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Marcott et al. 2013. Science

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Temperature reconstruction for the last 13,500 years. Note steep rise in recent time. (Science)

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Published By

Dr. Dick van der Wateren


Climate Change, Holocene, Global Warming

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New climate study replicates anthropogenic warming trend

09.03.2013, Age: 3153 days

After more than a decade of sometimes bitter controversies and personal attacks, a new reconstruction of regional and global temperature anomalies since the last Ice Age strongly supports Michael Mann's 'hockeystick curve'. Global climate during the last decade is warmer than during three quarters of postglacial time and temperatures rise faster than ever before.

The new reconstruction by Shaun Marcott, Jeremy Shakun, Peter Clark and Alan Mix from Oregon State University and Harvard University, USA, leaves little room for doubt: the last decades show global warming at unprecedented rates, while temperatures have risen to higher levels than during most of the Holocene. This study provides a detailed reconstruction of the temperature history since the last glaciation, thereby replicating earlier studies by Michael Mann and others (the 'hockeystisck curve'). Anyone skeptic about human-induced global warming will need to produce exceptionally strong arguments based on solid data to falsify the global warming dataset.


Surface temperature reconstructions of the past 1500 years suggest that recent warming is unprecedented in that time. Here we provide a broader perspective by reconstructing regional and global temperature anomalies for the past 11,300 years from 73 globally distributed records. Early Holocene (10,000 to 5000 years ago) warmth is followed by ~0.7°C cooling through the middle to late Holocene (<5000 years ago), culminating in the coolest temperatures of the Holocene during the Little Ice Age, about 200 years ago. This cooling is largely associated with ~2°C change in the North Atlantic. Current global temperatures of the past decade have not yet exceeded peak interglacial values but are warmer than during ~75% of the Holocene temperature history. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change model projections for 2100 exceed the full distribution of Holocene temperature under all plausible greenhouse gas emission scenarios.

Shaun A. Marcott, Jeremy D. Shakun, Peter U. Clark, Alan C. Mix: A Reconstruction of Regional and Global Temperature for the Past 11,300 Years. Science 8 March 2013: Vol. 339, no. 6124, pp. 1198-1201. DOI: 10.1126/science.1228026.

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