Palaeoclimatic evolution in the Miocene from the Transylvanian Depression reflected in the fossil record
Carmen Chira, Sorin Filipescu, Vlad Codrea, 2000. "Palaeoclimatic evolution in the Miocene from the Transylvanian Depression reflected in the fossil record", Climates: Past and Present, Malcolm B. Hart
Download citation file:
The palaeoclimate during the Miocene of the Transylvanian Depression (Romania) is interpreted mainly by the response of calcareous nannoplankton, microfauna (foraminifera), molluscs and mammals (rhinoceros) assemblages.
The first significant palaeoclimatic event is recorded during the early Miocene. The climatic warming at the level of the Vima Formation was followed by a more important warming during the Eggenburgian, which is preserved in the fossil record of the Corus Formation. During the Ottnangian, a cooling episode is recorded in the Hida Formation, probably related to Atlantic and Boreal influences. The climate on land was probably subtropical, humid, but much cooler than the Eggenburgian, as the remains of rhinoceros from this formation indicate.
The Middle Miocene marine sub-tropical assemblages are present in the Dej Formation (early Badenian), but towards its upper part sub-tropical species become scarce. The endemic elements, with boreal influences, are recognized in Kossovian strata. On land, the Moravian rhinoceros also suggest a sub-tropical climate, with marshy, densely afforested areas. Another rhinoceros found in the upper part of the Moravian, indicates a tendency to the continentalization of the climate. The early Sarmatian began with short period of warming, followed again by a cooling episode (Feleac Formation).
The last significant warming is recorded in the Late Miocene, during the Pannonian (Lopadea Formation). The small aceratheres from the Pannonian suggest marshy areas with a relatively warm climate.
Figures & Tables
The climate of the early Earth was probably very warm and has, in general, reduced since the Archean. However, it now seems that the world is about 0.6°C warmer than it was 100 years ago and estimates of the rate of global warming over the next century range from 0.16°C to 0.35°C per decade. Concurrently, global sea-level is predicted to rise from 2.4 to 10 cm per decade. These rates of change are much faster than those normally associated with the geological record, causing geologists and palaeontologists to reassess their data and their forecasts on rates of future change.
With the current interest in global climatic change and, more specifically, with global warming, it is clear that palaeontologists have valuable information to provide on the impacts of past climatic change. This volume contains papers from an international array of such geologists and palaeontologists, showing how studies of micro- and macrofossils, plant and vertebrate fossils from a range of geological ages have contributed to our understanding of how climate affects both local and more widespread areas. The contributions are arranged in geological order, ranging from the Permo-Carboniferous to the post-glacial recovery of the last 18,000 years, with an emphasis on climate change during the last two million years, particularly in NW Europe.
Climates: Past and Present will be of interest to palaeontologists, geologists and palaeoclimatologists who specialize in climatic reconstructions and any professionals enagaged in research into the geological aspects of climate change.