Episodic fresh surface waters in the Eocene Arctic Ocean

Henk Brinkhuis*, Stefan Schouten, Margaret E. Collinson, Appy Sluijs, Jaap S Sinninghe Damsté, Gerald R. Dickens, Matthew Huber, Thomas M. Cronin, Jonaotaro Onodera, Kozo Takahashi, Jonathan P. Bujak, Ruediger Stein, Johan Van Der Burgh, James S. Eldrett, Ian C. Harding, André F. Lotter, Francesca Sangiorgi, Han Van Konijnenburg Van Cittert, Jan W. De Leeuw, Jens MatthiessenJan Backman, Kathryn Moran, S. Clemens, F. Eynaud, J. Gattacceca, M. Jakobsson, R. Jordan, M. Kaminski, J. King, N. Koc, N. C. Martinez, D. Mcinroy, T. C. Moore, M. O'Regan, H. Pâlike, B. Rea, D. Rio, T. Sakamoto, D. C. Smith, K. E K St John, I. Suto, N. Suzuki, M. Watanabe, M. Yamamoto

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

215 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

It has been suggested, on the basis of modern hydrology and fully coupled palaeoclimate simulations, that the warm greenhouse conditions that characterized the early Palaeogene period (55-45 Myr ago) probably induced an intensified hydrological cycle with precipitation exceeding evaporation at high latitudes. Little field evidence, however, has been available to constrain oceanic conditions in the Arctic during this period. Here we analyse Palaeogene sediments obtained during the Arctic Coring Expedition, showing that large quantities of the free-floating fern Azolla grew and reproduced in the Arctic Ocean by the onset of the middle Eocene epoch (∼50 Myr ago). The Azolla and accompanying abundant freshwater organic and siliceous microfossils indicate an episodic freshening of Arctic surface waters during an ∼800,000-year interval. The abundant remains of Azolla that characterize basal middle Eocene marine deposits of all Nordic seas probably represent transported assemblages resulting from freshwater spills from the Arctic Ocean that reached as far south as the North Sea. The termination of the Azolla phase in the Arctic coincides with a local sea surface temperature rise from ∼10°C to 13°C, pointing to simultaneous increases in salt and heat supply owing to the influx of waters from adjacent oceans. We suggest that onset and termination of the Azolla phase depended on the degree of oceanic exchange between Arctic Ocean and adjacent seas.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)606-609
Number of pages4
JournalNature
Volume441
Issue number7093
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2006

Fingerprint

Fresh Water
Oceans and Seas
Hydrology
Ferns
Expeditions
Water
Salts
Hot Temperature
Temperature

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Cite this

Brinkhuis, H., Schouten, S., Collinson, M. E., Sluijs, A., Damsté, J. S. S., Dickens, G. R., ... Yamamoto, M. (2006). Episodic fresh surface waters in the Eocene Arctic Ocean. Nature, 441(7093), 606-609. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature04692

Episodic fresh surface waters in the Eocene Arctic Ocean. / Brinkhuis, Henk; Schouten, Stefan; Collinson, Margaret E.; Sluijs, Appy; Damsté, Jaap S Sinninghe; Dickens, Gerald R.; Huber, Matthew; Cronin, Thomas M.; Onodera, Jonaotaro; Takahashi, Kozo; Bujak, Jonathan P.; Stein, Ruediger; Van Der Burgh, Johan; Eldrett, James S.; Harding, Ian C.; Lotter, André F.; Sangiorgi, Francesca; Cittert, Han Van Konijnenburg Van; De Leeuw, Jan W.; Matthiessen, Jens; Backman, Jan; Moran, Kathryn; Clemens, S.; Eynaud, F.; Gattacceca, J.; Jakobsson, M.; Jordan, R.; Kaminski, M.; King, J.; Koc, N.; Martinez, N. C.; Mcinroy, D.; Moore, T. C.; O'Regan, M.; Pâlike, H.; Rea, B.; Rio, D.; Sakamoto, T.; Smith, D. C.; St John, K. E K; Suto, I.; Suzuki, N.; Watanabe, M.; Yamamoto, M.

In: Nature, Vol. 441, No. 7093, 01.06.2006, p. 606-609.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Brinkhuis, H, Schouten, S, Collinson, ME, Sluijs, A, Damsté, JSS, Dickens, GR, Huber, M, Cronin, TM, Onodera, J, Takahashi, K, Bujak, JP, Stein, R, Van Der Burgh, J, Eldrett, JS, Harding, IC, Lotter, AF, Sangiorgi, F, Cittert, HVKV, De Leeuw, JW, Matthiessen, J, Backman, J, Moran, K, Clemens, S, Eynaud, F, Gattacceca, J, Jakobsson, M, Jordan, R, Kaminski, M, King, J, Koc, N, Martinez, NC, Mcinroy, D, Moore, TC, O'Regan, M, Pâlike, H, Rea, B, Rio, D, Sakamoto, T, Smith, DC, St John, KEK, Suto, I, Suzuki, N, Watanabe, M & Yamamoto, M 2006, 'Episodic fresh surface waters in the Eocene Arctic Ocean', Nature, vol. 441, no. 7093, pp. 606-609. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature04692
Brinkhuis H, Schouten S, Collinson ME, Sluijs A, Damsté JSS, Dickens GR et al. Episodic fresh surface waters in the Eocene Arctic Ocean. Nature. 2006 Jun 1;441(7093):606-609. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature04692
Brinkhuis, Henk ; Schouten, Stefan ; Collinson, Margaret E. ; Sluijs, Appy ; Damsté, Jaap S Sinninghe ; Dickens, Gerald R. ; Huber, Matthew ; Cronin, Thomas M. ; Onodera, Jonaotaro ; Takahashi, Kozo ; Bujak, Jonathan P. ; Stein, Ruediger ; Van Der Burgh, Johan ; Eldrett, James S. ; Harding, Ian C. ; Lotter, André F. ; Sangiorgi, Francesca ; Cittert, Han Van Konijnenburg Van ; De Leeuw, Jan W. ; Matthiessen, Jens ; Backman, Jan ; Moran, Kathryn ; Clemens, S. ; Eynaud, F. ; Gattacceca, J. ; Jakobsson, M. ; Jordan, R. ; Kaminski, M. ; King, J. ; Koc, N. ; Martinez, N. C. ; Mcinroy, D. ; Moore, T. C. ; O'Regan, M. ; Pâlike, H. ; Rea, B. ; Rio, D. ; Sakamoto, T. ; Smith, D. C. ; St John, K. E K ; Suto, I. ; Suzuki, N. ; Watanabe, M. ; Yamamoto, M. / Episodic fresh surface waters in the Eocene Arctic Ocean. In: Nature. 2006 ; Vol. 441, No. 7093. pp. 606-609.
@article{b6e047785f414b129e226f8e4a5df97b,
title = "Episodic fresh surface waters in the Eocene Arctic Ocean",
abstract = "It has been suggested, on the basis of modern hydrology and fully coupled palaeoclimate simulations, that the warm greenhouse conditions that characterized the early Palaeogene period (55-45 Myr ago) probably induced an intensified hydrological cycle with precipitation exceeding evaporation at high latitudes. Little field evidence, however, has been available to constrain oceanic conditions in the Arctic during this period. Here we analyse Palaeogene sediments obtained during the Arctic Coring Expedition, showing that large quantities of the free-floating fern Azolla grew and reproduced in the Arctic Ocean by the onset of the middle Eocene epoch (∼50 Myr ago). The Azolla and accompanying abundant freshwater organic and siliceous microfossils indicate an episodic freshening of Arctic surface waters during an ∼800,000-year interval. The abundant remains of Azolla that characterize basal middle Eocene marine deposits of all Nordic seas probably represent transported assemblages resulting from freshwater spills from the Arctic Ocean that reached as far south as the North Sea. The termination of the Azolla phase in the Arctic coincides with a local sea surface temperature rise from ∼10°C to 13°C, pointing to simultaneous increases in salt and heat supply owing to the influx of waters from adjacent oceans. We suggest that onset and termination of the Azolla phase depended on the degree of oceanic exchange between Arctic Ocean and adjacent seas.",
author = "Henk Brinkhuis and Stefan Schouten and Collinson, {Margaret E.} and Appy Sluijs and Damst{\'e}, {Jaap S Sinninghe} and Dickens, {Gerald R.} and Matthew Huber and Cronin, {Thomas M.} and Jonaotaro Onodera and Kozo Takahashi and Bujak, {Jonathan P.} and Ruediger Stein and {Van Der Burgh}, Johan and Eldrett, {James S.} and Harding, {Ian C.} and Lotter, {Andr{\'e} F.} and Francesca Sangiorgi and Cittert, {Han Van Konijnenburg Van} and {De Leeuw}, {Jan W.} and Jens Matthiessen and Jan Backman and Kathryn Moran and S. Clemens and F. Eynaud and J. Gattacceca and M. Jakobsson and R. Jordan and M. Kaminski and J. King and N. Koc and Martinez, {N. C.} and D. Mcinroy and Moore, {T. C.} and M. O'Regan and H. P{\^a}like and B. Rea and D. Rio and T. Sakamoto and Smith, {D. C.} and {St John}, {K. E K} and I. Suto and N. Suzuki and M. Watanabe and M. Yamamoto",
year = "2006",
month = "6",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1038/nature04692",
language = "English",
volume = "441",
pages = "606--609",
journal = "Nature",
issn = "0028-0836",
publisher = "Nature Publishing Group",
number = "7093",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Episodic fresh surface waters in the Eocene Arctic Ocean

AU - Brinkhuis, Henk

AU - Schouten, Stefan

AU - Collinson, Margaret E.

AU - Sluijs, Appy

AU - Damsté, Jaap S Sinninghe

AU - Dickens, Gerald R.

AU - Huber, Matthew

AU - Cronin, Thomas M.

AU - Onodera, Jonaotaro

AU - Takahashi, Kozo

AU - Bujak, Jonathan P.

AU - Stein, Ruediger

AU - Van Der Burgh, Johan

AU - Eldrett, James S.

AU - Harding, Ian C.

AU - Lotter, André F.

AU - Sangiorgi, Francesca

AU - Cittert, Han Van Konijnenburg Van

AU - De Leeuw, Jan W.

AU - Matthiessen, Jens

AU - Backman, Jan

AU - Moran, Kathryn

AU - Clemens, S.

AU - Eynaud, F.

AU - Gattacceca, J.

AU - Jakobsson, M.

AU - Jordan, R.

AU - Kaminski, M.

AU - King, J.

AU - Koc, N.

AU - Martinez, N. C.

AU - Mcinroy, D.

AU - Moore, T. C.

AU - O'Regan, M.

AU - Pâlike, H.

AU - Rea, B.

AU - Rio, D.

AU - Sakamoto, T.

AU - Smith, D. C.

AU - St John, K. E K

AU - Suto, I.

AU - Suzuki, N.

AU - Watanabe, M.

AU - Yamamoto, M.

PY - 2006/6/1

Y1 - 2006/6/1

N2 - It has been suggested, on the basis of modern hydrology and fully coupled palaeoclimate simulations, that the warm greenhouse conditions that characterized the early Palaeogene period (55-45 Myr ago) probably induced an intensified hydrological cycle with precipitation exceeding evaporation at high latitudes. Little field evidence, however, has been available to constrain oceanic conditions in the Arctic during this period. Here we analyse Palaeogene sediments obtained during the Arctic Coring Expedition, showing that large quantities of the free-floating fern Azolla grew and reproduced in the Arctic Ocean by the onset of the middle Eocene epoch (∼50 Myr ago). The Azolla and accompanying abundant freshwater organic and siliceous microfossils indicate an episodic freshening of Arctic surface waters during an ∼800,000-year interval. The abundant remains of Azolla that characterize basal middle Eocene marine deposits of all Nordic seas probably represent transported assemblages resulting from freshwater spills from the Arctic Ocean that reached as far south as the North Sea. The termination of the Azolla phase in the Arctic coincides with a local sea surface temperature rise from ∼10°C to 13°C, pointing to simultaneous increases in salt and heat supply owing to the influx of waters from adjacent oceans. We suggest that onset and termination of the Azolla phase depended on the degree of oceanic exchange between Arctic Ocean and adjacent seas.

AB - It has been suggested, on the basis of modern hydrology and fully coupled palaeoclimate simulations, that the warm greenhouse conditions that characterized the early Palaeogene period (55-45 Myr ago) probably induced an intensified hydrological cycle with precipitation exceeding evaporation at high latitudes. Little field evidence, however, has been available to constrain oceanic conditions in the Arctic during this period. Here we analyse Palaeogene sediments obtained during the Arctic Coring Expedition, showing that large quantities of the free-floating fern Azolla grew and reproduced in the Arctic Ocean by the onset of the middle Eocene epoch (∼50 Myr ago). The Azolla and accompanying abundant freshwater organic and siliceous microfossils indicate an episodic freshening of Arctic surface waters during an ∼800,000-year interval. The abundant remains of Azolla that characterize basal middle Eocene marine deposits of all Nordic seas probably represent transported assemblages resulting from freshwater spills from the Arctic Ocean that reached as far south as the North Sea. The termination of the Azolla phase in the Arctic coincides with a local sea surface temperature rise from ∼10°C to 13°C, pointing to simultaneous increases in salt and heat supply owing to the influx of waters from adjacent oceans. We suggest that onset and termination of the Azolla phase depended on the degree of oceanic exchange between Arctic Ocean and adjacent seas.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=33745243680&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1038/nature04692

DO - 10.1038/nature04692

M3 - Article

C2 - 16752440

AN - SCOPUS:33745243680

VL - 441

SP - 606

EP - 609

JO - Nature

JF - Nature

SN - 0028-0836

IS - 7093

ER -