13C/12C Ratio in Peat Cores: Record of Past Climates

  • G. Skrzypek
  • M.-O. Jedrysek


Three carbon isotope profiles, from the raised Polish peat bogs Zieleniec, Szrenica, and Suche Bagno, representing the last millennium, have been analysed. δ13C in the peat profiles varies from −31 to −22‰. δ13C changes were found similar in the horizons of various cores. We suggest that variation in δ13C of peat is dominantly governed by variations in temperature of vegetation period of Sphagnum composing given strata. It is also shown, that an increase of 1 °C of the vegetation temperature results in the of about −0.6‰ of δ13C. Based on δ13C isotope calibration, the following sequence in the climate variations between AD 600 and 1950 in Poland is proposed: a cold period from AD 600 to 1050, a very cold period from AD 1050 to 1200, a very warm period corresponding to the “Little Climatic Optimum” (Matthes 1939) from AD 1200 to 1550, a very cold period corresponding to the “Little Ice Age” from AD 1550 to 1820 and a warm moderate period corresponding to the “Global Climatic Warming” from AD 1830 to 1960.

Key words

peat carbon isotopes climate temperature 


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. Skrzypek
  • M.-O. Jedrysek

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