Cardiff University | Prifysgol Caerdydd ORCA
Online Research @ Cardiff 
WelshClear Cookie - decide language by browser settings

Multiple carbon cycle mechanisms associated with the glaciation of Marine Isotope Stage 4

Menking, James A., Shackleton, Sarah A., Bauska, Thomas K., Buffen, Aron M., Brook, Edward J., Barker, Stephen ORCID:, Severinghaus, Jeffrey P., Dyonisius, Michael N. and Petrenko, Vasilii V. 2022. Multiple carbon cycle mechanisms associated with the glaciation of Marine Isotope Stage 4. Nature Communications 13 (1) , 5443. 10.1038/s41467-022-33166-3

[thumbnail of 41467_2022_Article_33166.pdf] PDF - Published Version
Download (1MB)


Abstract: Here we use high-precision carbon isotope data (δ13C-CO2) to show atmospheric CO2 during Marine Isotope Stage 4 (MIS 4, ~70.5-59 ka) was controlled by a succession of millennial-scale processes. Enriched δ13C-CO2 during peak glaciation suggests increased ocean carbon storage. Variations in δ13C-CO2 in early MIS 4 suggest multiple processes were active during CO2 drawdown, potentially including decreased land carbon and decreased Southern Ocean air-sea gas exchange superposed on increased ocean carbon storage. CO2 remained low during MIS 4 while δ13C-CO2 fluctuations suggest changes in Southern Ocean and North Atlantic air-sea gas exchange. A 7 ppm increase in CO2 at the onset of Dansgaard-Oeschger event 19 (72.1 ka) and 27 ppm increase in CO2 during late MIS 4 (Heinrich Stadial 6, ~63.5-60 ka) involved additions of isotopically light carbon to the atmosphere. The terrestrial biosphere and Southern Ocean air-sea gas exchange are possible sources, with the latter event also involving decreased ocean carbon storage.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Earth and Environmental Sciences
Additional Information: License information from Publisher: LICENSE 1: URL:, Type: open-access
Publisher: Nature Research
ISSN: 2041-1723
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 20 September 2022
Date of Acceptance: 2 September 2022
Last Modified: 02 May 2023 13:32

Actions (repository staff only)

Edit Item Edit Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics