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Evidence of late Holocene climate variability in the western Nanling Mountains, South China

Abstract

A 95-cm-thick peat sequence obtained from Daping Swamp in the western Nanling Mountains provides evidence for climate variability in the past ~3,000 year. Multi-proxy records (including organic carbon isotopes, humification degree, organic matter content, and dry bulk density) revealed three intensified Asian summer monsoon (ASM) intervals (i.e.~2900–2700, 2500–1700 and 1000–600 cal. yr BP) and three weakened ASM intervals (i.e.~2800–2500, 1700–1000 and 600–200 cal. yr BP). Our δ13C record shows a possible correlation with the sunspot number and residual atmospheric 14C records on multi-centennial scale, especially for the period between 2960 and 2200 cal. yr BP. A spectral analysis of δ13C record reveals three significant cycles (i.e., 396, 110 and 102 yr) and all these cycles could be related to solar activity, suggesting that solar output may have influenced the late Holocene climate variability in the study region.

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Acknowledgments

Radiocarbon dates were measured in the Key Lab. of Western China’s Environmental Systems (Ministry of Education of China), Lanzhou University. Organic carbon isotopes were analyzed in State Key Lab. of Gas Geochemistry, Lanzhou Institute of Geology, CAS. We feel grateful to Mr. Cao Jixiu and Prof. Zhang Chengjun in Lanzhou University and Dr. Yang Hui in Lanzhou Institute of Geology (CAS) for their help in laboratory analyses. We sincerely thank Prof. Steffen Mischke (the Associate Editor of this Journal) and two anonymous reviewers, for their thorough comments and constructive suggestions which significantly improved the manuscript. This work was supported by the Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 41071137 and 40671189), the Research Program of Institution of High Education in Guangdong Province for High-level Talents, and the Natural Science Foundation of Guangdong Province (Nos. S2011010003413 and 8151063101000044).

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Correspondence to Wei Zhong.

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Zhong, W., Xue, J., Ouyang, J. et al. Evidence of late Holocene climate variability in the western Nanling Mountains, South China. J Paleolimnol 52, 1–10 (2014). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10933-014-9774-6

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Keywords

  • Late Holocene
  • Asian monsoon
  • Solar forcing
  • Peat
  • Western Nanling Mountains