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El Niño–Southern Oscillation: Absent in the Early Holocene?

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  • 1 Climate Research Group, CMC, PCB, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain, and Center for Ocean–Land–Atmosphere Studies, IGES, Calverton, Maryland
  • | 2 Climate Research Group, CMC, PCB, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
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Abstract

High-resolution sedimentary proxies from low latitudes are rare but nevertheless important to understanding the role of tropical regions in the global climate. The reanalysis of a sedimentary record from Lake Pallcacocha (Andes) shows that ENSO was present throughout the Holocene. Even from 10 000 to 7000 calendar years before present, when the Tropics underwent a period of low variance, there is still evidence of a weak ENSO. This weakening, however, has been strongly overestimated. A frequency decomposition shows that all frequency components, except the millennial band (which has a different origin), covary synchronically for more than 6000 yr. A need to reconcile methodologies and results from climate studies at different time scales thus arises.

Corresponding author address: Dr. Xavier Rodó, Climate Research Group, Center of Meteorology and Climatology, BSP-University of Barcelona, C. Baldini I Reixach, 4-6, Torre D. Barcelona 08018, Spain. Email: xrodo@pcb.ub.es

Abstract

High-resolution sedimentary proxies from low latitudes are rare but nevertheless important to understanding the role of tropical regions in the global climate. The reanalysis of a sedimentary record from Lake Pallcacocha (Andes) shows that ENSO was present throughout the Holocene. Even from 10 000 to 7000 calendar years before present, when the Tropics underwent a period of low variance, there is still evidence of a weak ENSO. This weakening, however, has been strongly overestimated. A frequency decomposition shows that all frequency components, except the millennial band (which has a different origin), covary synchronically for more than 6000 yr. A need to reconcile methodologies and results from climate studies at different time scales thus arises.

Corresponding author address: Dr. Xavier Rodó, Climate Research Group, Center of Meteorology and Climatology, BSP-University of Barcelona, C. Baldini I Reixach, 4-6, Torre D. Barcelona 08018, Spain. Email: xrodo@pcb.ub.es

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