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INSTAAR seminar: Insights into the climate evolution since the Last Glacial Maximum: A melding of...

Monday, February 05, 2018, 12:15PM - 1:15PM


Bette Otto-Bliesner

Climate and Global Dynamics Laboratory, NCAR


Sievers Room - SEEC S228

Full title

Insights into the climate evolution since the Last Glacial Maximum: A melding of paleoclimate modeling and data


Paleoclimate modeling has progressed from its early days of idealized time slices for particular geologic periods using atmosphere-only models to simulations that can explore the transient evolution of the climate system, especially the time-evolving nature of the atmosphere, ocean, sea ice, and land surface and their interactions, over many millennia. These transient simulations have been made possible by the increase in computing power, the development and coupling of new model components, and the availability of improved chronologies of changes in the important forcings and responses.

The mechanisms and feedbacks responsible for explaining the temporal nature of the records – leads and lags, abrupt changes – are now better understood by the combined analysis from paleoclimate modeling and data together, progress which neither can make alone. The data provides us with the ‘what’ and ‘when’, while modeling provides us a tool to test the ‘why’. In this talk, I will provide insights into some of the questions surrounding the last 21,000 years. What forcings contributed to the abrupt Bølling-Allerød warming in Greenland? Why did the African Humid Period start synchronously and rapidly over much of Africa just after 15,000 years ago? Was the Last Glacial Maximum ENSO stronger or weaker than present? By continuing to explore the unanswered puzzles of paleoclimate, together, our community provides a firmer basis for understanding the future trajectory for our Earth.


Refreshments at 11:45, south end SEEC 2nd floor


Free and open to the public.