Skip to Main Content
Skip Nav Destination

Similar Holocene glaciation histories in tropical South America and Africa

Anthony C. Vickers, Jeremy D. Shakun, Brent M. Goehring, Andrew Gorin, Meredith A. Kelly, Margaret S. Jackson, Alice Doughty and James Russell
Similar Holocene glaciation histories in tropical South America and Africa
Geology (Boulder) (September 2020) Pre-Issue Publication


Tropical glaciers have retreated alongside warming temperatures over the past century, yet the way in which these trends fit into a long-term geological context is largely unclear. Here, we present reconstructions of Holocene glacier extents relative to today from the Quelccaya ice cap (Peru) and the Rwenzori Mountains (Uganda) based on measurements of in situ 14C and 10Be from recently exposed bedrock. Ice-extent histories are similar at both sites and suggest that ice was generally smaller than today during the first half of the Holocene and larger than today for most, if not all, of the past several millennia. The similar glaciation history in South America and Africa suggests that large-scale warming followed by cooling of the tropics during the late Holocene primarily drove ice extent, rather than regional changes in precipitation. Our results also imply that recent tropical ice retreat is anomalous in a multimillennial context.

ISSN: 0091-7613
EISSN: 1943-2682
Serial Title: Geology (Boulder)
Serial Volume: Pre-Issue Publication
Title: Similar Holocene glaciation histories in tropical South America and Africa
Affiliation: Boston College, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Chestnut Hill, MA, United States
Published: 20200918
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States
References: 47
Accession Number: 2020-079510
Categories: Quaternary geology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. sketch maps
N00°00'00" - N01°00'00", E29°00'00" - E30°00'00"
S14°00'00" - S13°00'00", W71°00'00" - W70°00'00"
Secondary Affiliation: Tulane University, USA, United StatesDartmouth College, USA, United StatesBrown University, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2020, American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States. Reference includes data supplied by the Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, United States
Update Code: 202022
Close Modal

or Create an Account

Close Modal
Close Modal