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Recent Increases in Tasmanian Huon Pine Ring Widths from a Subalpine Stand: Natural Climate Variability, CO2 Fertilisation, or Greenhouse Warming?

Edward R. Cook; R. J. Francey; Brendan M. Buckley; Rosanne Dorothy D'Arrigo

Title:
Recent Increases in Tasmanian Huon Pine Ring Widths from a Subalpine Stand: Natural Climate Variability, CO2 Fertilisation, or Greenhouse Warming?
Author(s):
Cook, Edward R.
Francey, R. J.
Buckley, Brendan M.
D'Arrigo, Rosanne Dorothy
Date:
Type:
Articles
Department(s):
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
Volume:
130
Persistent URL:
Book/Journal Title:
Papers and Proceedings of the Royal Society of Tasmania
Geographic Area:
Tasmania
Abstract:
Tasmanian subalpine Huon pines from the extreme high-altitude limit of the species distribution provide a summer temperature reconstruction extending back beyond 800 Be. Compared to low elevation Huon pine sites, the subalpine ring-widths exhibit a straightforward direct response to current growth-season temperatures and indicate anomalous warming of 0.33 ± O.06°C from 1967- 91. This warming is consistent with Tasmanian instrumental records and with hemispheric and global records. The possibility that the trees are responding directly to CO2 fertilisation is explored, using a high-precision record of CO2, obtained from air in Antarctic ice and firn, plus direct measurements of air from Cape Grim. The temperature forcing appears capable of explaining the ring-width variations in the alpine trees over the full range of observed periods, whereas CO2 fertilisation would require a more complex interaction and is not supported by other arguments. Two millennia-long tree-ring reconstructions of summer temperatures from South America do not exhibit the recent warming, nor other features found in the Tasmanian record on decadal to century time-scales. In fact, the South American chronologies bear little resemblance to each other, but do, however, reflect their own regional instrumental records. The Mt Read ring-width chronology, and the instrumental temperature series used for its calibration, also co-vary with climate influences of a distinctly regional character, yet still replicate many of the features reported as hemispheric and global temperatures over the last century. Spectral analysis of the Mt Read tree-ring data over the full 2,792 years suggests that at least part of the recent warming in the instrumental records could be a consequence of "natural forcing" of the record, complicating an interpretation in terms of a greenhouse-forced warming.
Subject(s):
Dendroclimatology
Huon pine
Paleoclimatology
Climatic changes
Item views
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Suggested Citation:
Edward R. Cook, R. J. Francey, Brendan M. Buckley, Rosanne Dorothy D'Arrigo, , Recent Increases in Tasmanian Huon Pine Ring Widths from a Subalpine Stand: Natural Climate Variability, CO2 Fertilisation, or Greenhouse Warming?, Columbia University Academic Commons, .

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