Poore, R. Z., United States Geological Surve, St Petersburg, USA, rpoore@usgs.gov
Richey, J. N., University of South Florida, St Petersburg, USA, jrichey@usf.edu

NORTHERN GULF OF MEXICO CLIMATE VARIABILITY

Available records from the northern Gulf of Mexico (GOM) indicate that significant multidecadal and century-scale variability in sea-surface temperature (SST) occurred over the last 1,400 years. Mean annual SST varied as much as 30C, and decadal-long excursions to cold SST between 1,000 and 150 years ago coincide with minima in sunspot activity indicating that minor variations in solar output are linked to SST change in the Gulf of Mexico. Compilation of tree-ring records for the last few hundred years indicates that multi-year-long droughts periodically occur along the Gulf Coast. One such drought that affected the central and eastern Gulf Coast was centered at about A.D. 1800. Additional climate and environmental records with sufficient age control and sampling density to resolve decadal to multidecadal-scale climate variation are needed to refine the history of natural climate variability in the northern Gulf Coast in the recent geologic past. The records are required to estimate the range of natural variability that is likely to occur in the next century and to help identify and separate natural from anthropogenic-forced changes.

Oral presentation

Presentation is given by student: No
Session #:078
Date: 03-06-2008
Time: 17:15

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