Skip to Main Content
Book Chapter

The Palaeocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum super greenhouse: biotic and geochemical signatures, age models and mechanisms of global change

By
A. Sluijs
A. Sluijs
1
Palaeoecology, Institute of Environmental Biology, Utrecht University, Laboratory of Palaeobotany and Palynology, Budapestlaan 4, 3584 CD Utrecht, The Netherlands (A.Sluijs@uu.nl)
Search for other works by this author on:
G. J. Bowen
G. J. Bowen
2
Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Purdue University, 550 Stadium Mall Drive, West Lafayette, IN 47907, USA
Search for other works by this author on:
H. Brinkhuis
H. Brinkhuis
1
Palaeoecology, Institute of Environmental Biology, Utrecht University, Laboratory of Palaeobotany and Palynology, Budapestlaan 4, 3584 CD Utrecht, The Netherlands (A.Sluijs@uu.nl)
Search for other works by this author on:
L. J. Lourens
L. J. Lourens
3
Faculty of Geosciences, Department of Earth Sciences, Utrecht University, Budapestlaan 4, 3584 CD Utrecht, The Netherlands
Search for other works by this author on:
E. Thomas
E. Thomas
4
Center for the Study of Global Change, Department of Geology and Geophysics, Yale University, New Haven CT 06520-8109, USA; also at Department of Earth &Environmental Sciences, Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT, USA
Search for other works by this author on:
Published:
January 01, 2007

Abstract

The Palaeocene–Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM), a geologically brief episode of global warming associated with the Palaeocene–Eocene boundary, has been studied extensively since its discovery in 1991. The PETM is characterized by a globally quasi-uniform 5–8 °C warming and large changes in ocean chemistry and biotic response. The warming is associated with a negative carbon isotope excursion (CIE), reflecting geologically rapid input of large amounts of isotopically light CO2 and/or CH4 into the exogenic (ocean–atmosphere) carbon pool. The biotic response on land and in the oceans was heterogeneous in nature and severity, including radiations, extinctions and migrations. Recently, several events that appear similar to the PETM in nature, but of smaller magnitude, were identified to have occurred in the late Palaeocene through early Eocene, with their timing possibly modulated by orbital forcing. Although debate continues on the carbon source, the mechanisms that caused the input, the mechanisms of carbon sequestration, and the duration and pacing of the event, the research carried out over the last 15 years has provided new constraints and spawned new research directions that will lead to improved understanding of PETM carbon cycle and climate change.

You do not currently have access to this article.

Figures & Tables

Contents

The Micropalaeontological Society, Special Publications

Deep-Time Perspectives on Climate Change: Marrying the Signal from Computer Models and Biological Proxies

Geological Society of London
Volume
2
ISBN electronic:
9781862396203
Publication date:
January 01, 2007

GeoRef

References

Related

Citing Books via

Close Modal
This Feature Is Available To Subscribers Only

Sign In or Create an Account

Close Modal
Close Modal