13 Apr 2022
13 Apr 2022
Status: this preprint is open for discussion and under review for Climate of the Past (CP).

Regional pollen-based Holocene temperature and precipitation patterns depart from the Northern Hemisphere mean trends

Ulrike Herzschuh1,2,3, Thomas Böhmer1, Manuel Chevalier4,5,6, Anne Dallmeyer5, Chenzhi Li1,2, Xianyong Cao1,7, Raphaël Hébert1, Odile Peyron8, Larisa Nazarova1,9, Elena Y. Novenko10,11, Jungjae Park12,13, Natalia A. Rudaya14,15, Frank Schlütz16,17, Lyudmila S. Shumilovskikh17, Pavel E. Tarasov18, Yongbo Wang19, Ruilin Wen20,21, Qinghai Xu22, and Zhuo Zheng23,24 Ulrike Herzschuh et al.
  • 1Alfred Wegener Institute Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, Polar Terrestrial Environmental Systems, Telegrafenberg A45, 14473 Potsdam, Germany
  • 2Institute of Environmental Science and Geography, University of Potsdam, Karl-Liebknecht-Str. 24-25, 14476 Potsdam, Germany
  • 3Institute of Biochemistry and Biology, University of Potsdam, Karl-Liebknecht-Str. 24-25, 14476 Potsdam, Germany
  • 4Institute of Geosciences, Sect. Meteorology, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universitä t Bonn, Auf dem Hü gel 20, 53121 Bonn, Germany
  • 5Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Bundesstrasse 53, 20146 Hamburg, Germany
  • 6Institute of Earth Surface Dynamics IDYST, Faculté des Géosciences et l'Environnement, University of Lausanne, Batiment Géopolis, 1015 Lausanne, Switzerland
  • 7Alpine Paleoecology and Human Adaptation Group (ALPHA), State Key Laboratory of Tibetan Plateau Earth System, Resources and Environment (TPESRE), Institute of Tibetan Plateau Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 100101 Beijing, China
  • 8Institut des Sciences de l’Evolution de Montpellier, Université de Montpellier, CNRS UMR 5554, Montpellier, France
  • 9Kazan Federal University, Kremlyovskaya str. 18, 420008 Kazan, Russia
  • 10Lomonosov Moscow State University, Faculty of Geography, Leniskie gory 1, 119991 Moscow, Russia
  • 11Department of Quaternary Paleogeography, Institute of Geography Russian Academy of Science, Staromonrtny lane, 29, 119017, Moscow, Russia
  • 12Department of Geography, Seoul National University, 1 Gwanak-ro, Gwanak-gu, Seoul, 08826, Republic of Korea
  • 13Institute for Korean Regional Studies, Seoul National University, 1 Gwanak-ro, Gwanak-gu, Seoul, 08826, Republic of Korea
  • 14PaleoData Lab, Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography, Siberian Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences, Pr. Akademika 36 Lavrentieva 17, 630090 Novosibirsk, Russia
  • 15Biological Institute, Tomsk State University, Pr. Lenina, 26, Tomsk, 634050, Russia
  • 16Lower Saxony Institute for Historical Coastal Research, D-26382 Wilhelmshaven, Germany
  • 17Department of Palynology and Climate Dynamics, Albrecht-von-Haller Institute for Plant Sciences, University of Göttingen, Untere Karspüle 2, 37073 Göttingen, Germany
  • 18Freie Universität Berlin, Institute of Geological Sciences, Palaeontology Section, Malteserstrasse 74- 100, Building D, 12249 Berlin, Germany
  • 19College of Resource Environment and Tourism, Capital Normal University, 105 West 3rd Ring Rd N, 100048 Beijing, China
  • 20Key Laboratory of Cenozoic Geology and Environment, Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 19 Beitucheng West Road, Chaoyang District, 100029 Beijing, China
  • 21CAS Center for Excellence in Life and Paleoenvironment, 100044 Beijing, China
  • 22College of Geographical Sciences, Hebei Normal University, 050024 Shijiazhuang, China
  • 23Guangdong Key Lab of Geodynamics and Geohazards, School of Earth Sciences and Engineering, Sun Yat-sen University, 519082 Zhuhai, China
  • 24Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Zhuhai), 519082 Zhuhai, China

Abstract. A mismatch between model- and proxy-based Holocene climate change, known as the Holocene conundrum, may partially originate from the poor spatial coverage of climate reconstructions in, for example, Asia, limiting the number of grid-cells for model-data comparisons. Here we investigate hemispheric, latitudinal, and regional mean time-series as well as anomaly maps of pollen-based reconstructions of mean annual temperature, mean July temperature, and annual precipitation from 1676 records in the Northern Hemisphere extratropics. Temperature trends show strong latitudinal patterns and differ between (sub-)continents. While the circum-Atlantic regions in Europe and eastern North America show a pronounced mid-Holocene temperature maximum, western North America shows only weak changes and Asia mostly a continuous Holocene temperature increase but with strong latitudinal differences. Likewise, precipitation trends show certain regional peculiarities such as the pronounced mid-Holocene optimum between 30 and 40° N in Asia and Holocene increasing trends in Europe and western North America which can all be linked with Holocene changes of the regional circulation pattern linked to temperature change. Given a background of strong regional heterogeneity, we conclude that the calculation of global or hemispheric means which initiated the Holocene conundrum debate should focus more on understanding the spatio-temporal patterns and their regional drivers.

Ulrike Herzschuh et al.

Status: open (until 15 Jun 2022)

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Ulrike Herzschuh et al.

Data sets

Northern Hemisphere temperature and precipitation reconstruction from taxonomically harmonized pollen data set with revised chronologies using WA-PLS and MAT (LegacyClimate 1.0) Herzschuh, Ulrike; Böhmer, Thomas; Li, Chenzhi; Cao, Xianyong

Ulrike Herzschuh et al.


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Short summary
A mismatch between model- and proxy-based Holocene climate change may partially originate from the poor spatial coverage of climate reconstructions. Here we investigate quantitative reconstructions of mean annual temperature and annual precipitation from 1676 pollen records in the Northern Hemisphere. Trends show strong latitudinal patterns and differ between (sub-)continents. Our work contributes to a better understanding of the global means.