The warm Pliocene: Bridging the geological data and modelling communities
© Author(s) 2022. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

A Pliocene palaeoclimate record from Taigu-Yushe Basin, central China 

Huayu Lu1, Mark Dekkers2, Xiaoqiang Li3, Feng Cheng4, Ran Zhang5, Yichao Wang1, Hanlin Wang1, Jef Vandenberghe6, and Chengsen Li7
Huayu Lu et al.
  • 1School of Geography and Ocean Science, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210023; Key Laboratory of Tibetan Plateau Land Surface Processes and Ecological, Conservation (Ministry of Education), Xining 810016. China
  • 2Paleomagnetic Laboratory 'Fort Hoofddijk', Faculty of Earth Sciences, Utrecht University, Budapestlaan 17, 3584 CD Utrecht, The Netherlands
  • 3Key Laboratory of Vertebrate Evolution and Human Origins, Institute of Vertebrate Paleontology and Paleoanthropology, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100044, China
  • 4Key Laboratory of Orogenic Belts and Crustal Evolution, Ministry of Education, School of Earth and Space Sciences, Peking University, Beijing 100871, China
  • 5Institute of Atmospheric Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029, China
  • 6Department of Earth Sciences, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, De Boelelaan 1085, 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
  • 7Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100029, China.
  • Pliocene climate is regarded as an analogue of future global warming (Burke et al, 2018; IPCC, 2021). How was the Pliocene precipitation in the monsoonal East Asia is not well known, although the Pliocene eolian silt ‘Red Clay’ deposit sequences have been investigated (Gallagher et al., 2021; Wang et al., 2022.). The poor preservation of floral and fauna fossils, and low sedimentation rate of the Red Clay makes it inappropriate to use as proxies that quantitatively reconstructing the Pliocene paleoclimate. In this study, a thick lacustrine deposit sequence at the Taigu-Yushe Basin (TYB) in central China is investigated, in order to semi-quantitatively reconstruct the East Asian monsoon precipitation variations during the Pliocene and early Pleistocene. These lacustrine sediments are rich in fossils. The thick lacustrine deposit sequences are dated by paleomagnetic stratigraphy analysis and correlated with the loess-paleosol time-series. The results show that the TYB lake deposit was accumulated during circa 4.0 -1.5 Ma. The Xiaobai Formation, which indicates a humid climate, was formed during 4.0-2.4 Ma. The pollen assemblage of the lake deposits and fluvial sediments reveals a dry climate after 2.4 Ma. Our proxy analyses show the precipitation during the middle Pliocene was 30% more than the present. This sedimentary record unravels the strengthened East Asian monsoon circulation which transported more vapor to the monsoon marginal during the Pliocene warmth.

How to cite: Lu, H., Dekkers, M., Li, X., Cheng, F., Zhang, R., Wang, Y., Wang, H., Vandenberghe, J., and Li, C.: A Pliocene palaeoclimate record from Taigu-Yushe Basin, central China , The warm Pliocene: Bridging the geological data and modelling communities, Leeds, United Kingdom, 23–26 Aug 2022, GC10-Pliocene-23, https://doi.org/10.5194/egusphere-gc10-pliocene-23, 2022.