Evaluating climate indices and their geochemical proxies measured in corals
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Standard ocean/climate indices such as the Niño-3 sea surface temperature (SST) index, based on sparse instrumental data, and atmospheric indices such as the Southern Oscillation Index (SOI), may now be substituted and/or extended by coral-based indices. Several elements or their isotopes are incorporated in coral aragonitic skeletons at predictable concentrations, some of which are temperature or salinity dependent. The availability of century-old corals, at key oceanographic sites, permits the establishment of a network of proxy climate indices.