Analysis of climate indicators from the North Atlantic, California Margin, and ice cores from Greenland suggest millennial scale climate variability is a component of earth's climate system during the last interglacial period (marine oxygen isotope stage 5). The USGS is involved in a survey of high resolution marine records covering the last interglacial period (MIS 5) to further document the variability of climate and assess the rate at which climate can change during warm intervals.
The Gulf of Mexico (GOM) is an attractive area for analysis of climate variability and rapid change. Changes in the Mississippi River Basin presumably are translated to the GOM via the river and its effect on sediment distribution and type. Likewise, the summer monsoon in the southwestern US is driven by strong southerly winds. These winds may produce upwelling in the GOM which will be recorded in the sedimentary record. Several areas of high accumulation rate have been identified in the GOM. Ocean Drilling Program (ODP) Site 625 appears to meet the criteria of having a well preserved carbonate record and accumulation rate capable of discerning millennial scale changes.
Additional Publication Details
USGS Numbered Series
Sediment color and reflectance record from Ocean Drilling Program Hole 625B, Gulf of Mexico (marine isotope stage 5 interval)
U.S. Dept. of the Interior, U.S. Geological Survey,