Paleoclimates: Understanding Climate Change Past and Present

Hardcover | November 9, 2009

byThomas M. Cronin

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The field of paleoclimatology relies on physical, chemical, and biological proxies of past climate changes that have been preserved in natural archives such as glacial ice, tree rings, sediments, corals, and speleothems. Paleoclimate archives obtained through field investigations, ocean sediment coring expeditions, ice sheet coring programs, and other projects allow scientists to reconstruct climate change over much of earth's history.

When combined with computer model simulations, paleoclimatic reconstructions are used to test hypotheses about the causes of climatic change, such as greenhouse gases, solar variability, earth's orbital variations, and hydrological, oceanic, and tectonic processes. This book is a comprehensive, state-of-the art synthesis of paleoclimate research covering all geological timescales, emphasizing topics that shed light on modern trends in the earth's climate. Thomas M. Cronin discusses recent discoveries about past periods of global warmth, changes in atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations, abrupt climate and sea-level change, natural temperature variability, and other topics directly relevant to controversies over the causes and impacts of climate change. This text is geared toward advanced undergraduate and graduate students and researchers in geology, geography, biology, glaciology, oceanography, atmospheric sciences, and climate modeling, fields that contribute to paleoclimatology. This volume can also serve as a reference for those requiring a general background on natural climate variability.

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The field of paleoclimatology relies on physical, chemical, and biological proxies of past climate changes that have been preserved in natural archives such as glacial ice, tree rings, sediments, corals, and speleothems. Paleoclimate archives obtained through field investigations, ocean sediment coring expeditions, ice sheet coring pr...

Thomas M. Cronin is an adjunct professor in the Science, Technology, and International Affairs Program at Georgetown University's Walsh School of Foreign Service, where he teaches a course on oceans, climate, and world policy. Since earning his Ph.D. in geology at Harvard University, Cronin has been a leading researcher in the field o...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:448 pages, 11 × 8.5 × 0.98 inPublished:November 9, 2009Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0231144946

ISBN - 13:9780231144940

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Table of Contents

List of TablesPrefaceAcknowledgmentsAbbreviations1. Paleoclimatology and Modern Challenges2. Methods in Paleoclimatology3. Deep Time: Climate from 3.8 Billion to 65 Million Years Ago4. Cenozoic Climate5. Orbital Climate Change6. Glacial Millennial Climate Change7. Millennial Climate Events During Deglaciation8. Holocene Climate Variability9. Abrupt Climate Events10. Internal Modes of Climate Variability11. The Anthropocene I: Global and Hemispheric Temperature12. The Anthropocene II: Climatic and Hydrological Change During the Last 2000 YearsEpilogueAppendix: Paleoclimate ProxiesReferencesIndex

Editorial Reviews

There is much to be recommended, and the book will serve well in many libraries, both institutional and personal.