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Science. 2000 Dec 22;290(5500):2285-7.

Reconstruction of the Amazon Basin effective moisture availability over the past 14,000 years.

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1
Environmental Change Research Centre, Department of Geography, University College London, 26 Bedford Way, London, WC1H 0AP, UK. mmaslin@geog.ucl.ac.uk

Abstract

Quantifying the moisture history of the Amazon Basin is essential for understanding the cause of rain forest diversity and its potential as a methane source. We reconstructed the Amazon River outflow history for the past 14,000 years to provide a moisture budget for the river drainage basin. The oxygen isotopic composition of planktonic foraminifera recovered from a marine sediment core in a region of Amazon River discharge shows that the Amazon Basin was extremely dry during the Younger Dryas, with the discharge reduced by at least 40% as compared with that of today. After the Younger Dryas, a meltwater-driven discharge event was followed by a steady increase in the Amazon Basin effective moisture throughout the Holocene.

PMID:
11125137
DOI:
10.1126/science.290.5500.2285
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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