Paleosols and Past Climate Change

  • Martin Kehl
  • Farhad Khormali
Part of the World Soils Book Series book series (WSBS)


Paleosols in Iran have received less attention than modern soils, although Quaternary deposits and exposures therein are widespread. The chapter gives a short introduction into the general nature of buried and relict paleosols and on methodological aspects how to recognize, characterize and date paleosols. Examples are given for Pre-quaternary and Quaternary paleosols in Iran. The focus is on paleosols in loess-soil sequences in Northern Iran, which have been studied in more detail. These loess exposures contain paleosols of various development degrees separated by layers of more or less unweathered sediment. Strongly developed argillic horizons of paleo-Luvisols occur as well as very weakly developed brown horizons reflecting syngenetic soil formation. The loess-paleosol sequences are excellent geological archives of climate change, where paleosols mark periods of increased humidity and layers of unweathered loess dry phases. The paleosols most probably correlate with interglacial and interstadial periods of the last glacial cycles suggesting that climate change in Northern Iran was in phase with well-known cycles recorded in the temperate zone of the northern hemisphere. The high potential of paleosols as stratigraphic markers and geological archives of climate change and landscape evolution in Iran is still widely unchallenged.


Nature of paleosols Quaternary Loess Pedostratigraphy Climate archive 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of CologneCologneGermany
  2. 2.Agricultural Sciences and Natural ResourcesGorgan UniversityGorganIran

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