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Late Quaternary glacial-interglacial changes in sediment composition at the East Greenland continental margin and their paleoceanographic implications

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Nam, S. I. , Stein, R. , Grobe, H. and Hubberten, H. W. (1995): Late Quaternary glacial-interglacial changes in sediment composition at the East Greenland continental margin and their paleoceanographic implications , Marine Geology, 122 , pp. 243-262 . doi: 10.1016/0025-3227(94)00070-2
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Abstract:

Stable isotope records, and sedimentological and organic-geochemical investigations of marine sediments from the east Greenland Sea at 70°N provide important information about glacial-interglacial variations of paleoenvironments through the last 225 kyr.The oxygen isotope records established on the planktonic foraminifer N. pachyderma sin. show some excursions from the global climate pattern, probably due to local/regional overprint by meltwater supply. The cold, low-saline East Greenland Current and fluctuations in sea-ice covering were a crucial element controlling the carbonate production in the subsurface/surface water column in the east Greenland Sea over the last 225 kyr. The beginning of Termination Ia is AMS 14C dated at about 15.8 kyr B.P. and interpreted as a Greenland Ice Sheet meltwater signal. The stage 2/3 boundary is dated at about 25 kyr B.P. The timing of the onset of the last deglacial meltwater event is about 800 years earlier than that of the Barents Shelf Ice Sheet meltwater signal recorded in the Fram Strait.Several major pulses of increased supply of coarse-grained terrigenous material by glacio-marine processes occurred during the last 225 kyr. The supply of coarse-grained ice-rafted debris at the East Greenland continental slope reached maximum values during the last glacial maximum (stage 2/Weichselian, 15-19 kyr B.P.).The drastic climatic change and the gradual retreat of continental ice masses/glaciers during the last deglaciation (Termination I) are clearly documented in the marine sedimentary sequences from shelf and upper slope environments. This process resulted in distinctly decreased supply and deposition of ice-rafted debris in the open shelf-upper slope environments. During Termination I, the sea-ice cover also decreased, causing an increase in surface-water productivity, indicated by increased organic carbon and biogenic opal deposition.

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