The last deglaciation: an example of global warming

Date & time

4–5pm 26 July 2012


Leonard Huxley Theatre, Building 56, ANU Acton Campus


Professor Edouard Bard, Collège de France


 Robyn Petch
 +61 2 6125 9970

In contrast with the last few millennia that are characterized by a rather stable climate, the period between 21,000 and 6,000 years before present saw a complete reorganization of all parts of the climate system, e.g. atmosphere, ice sheets and ocean, together with their associated ecosystems and biogeochemical cycles. This period of first order changes is fascinating for climatologists because it allows them to study switches between equilibrium modes and transient variations at various spatial and temporal time scales. The last deglaciation is still a great source of scientific inspiration and remains a period full of interesting questions for the entire scientific community. It is only recently that paleotemperature records covering the last deglaciation have become available at a global scale, including tropical sites that are remote from the main centre of variation linked to the melting of former ice sheets on each side of the North Atlantic basin. In addition, dating of these records is now sufficiently accurate and precise to allow meaningful compilation and comparisons with model simulations performed in a transient mode. This work allows estimation of the phase relationships between causes (insolation and the greenhouse effect) and the responses, often abrupt, of the various components of the climate system such as the atmosphere, oceans and ice sheets. Edouard Bard has the Professor Chair in Climate & Ocean Evolution at the Collège de France and his laboratory is located in Aix-en-Provence. His various studies are at the interface of climatology, oceanography and geology. He earned his master degree in 1985 from the geological engineering school at Nancy and his doctoral degree in 1987 from the University of Paris 11-Orsay. He conducted his research in Columbia University’s Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory as a postdoctoral fellow in 1988 and as an Associate Research Scientist in 1989 and started teaching as a professor at the University of Aix-Marseille in 1991 and at the Collège de France since 2001. Register now for this intriguing seminar, presented by the Research School of Earth Sciences.

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