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Letters to Nature
Nature 371, 326 - 329 (22 September 1994); doi:10.1038/371326a0

High-resolution climate records from the North Atlantic during the last interglacial

J. F. McManus*, G. C. Bond*, W. S. Broecker*, S. Johnsen, L. Labeyrie§ & S. Higgins*

*Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University, Palisades, New York 10964, USA
The Niels Bohr Institute, Department of Geophysics, University of Copenhagen, Haraldsgade 6, DK-2200, Copenhagen N, Copenhagen
Science Institute, Department of Geophysics, University of Iceland, Dunghaga 3, IS-107 Reykjavik, Iceland
§CFR Laboratoire mixte CNRS-CEA, Domaine du CNRS, 91198, Gif-sur Yvette, Cedex, France

THE two deep ice cores recovered by the GRIP1 and GISP22 projects at Summit, Greenland, agree in detail over the past 100,000 years3 and demonstrate dramatic climate variability in the North Atlantic region during the last glacial, before the current period of Holocene stability. This glacial climate instability has subsequently been documented in the marine sedimentary record of surface-ocean conditions in the North Atlantic4. Before 100 kyr ago the two ice core records are discrepant, however, casting doubt on whether the oxygen isotope fluctuations during the last interglacial (Eemian) seen in the GRIP core1,5 represent a true climate signal. Here we present high-resolution records of foraminiferal assemblages and ice-rafted detritus from two North Atlantic cores for the interval 65 kyr to 135 kyr ago, extending the surface-ocean record back to the Eemian. The correlation between our records and the Greenland ice-core records is good throughout the period in which the two ice cores agree, suggesting a regionally coherent climate response. During the Eemian, our marine records show a more stable climate than that implied by the GRIP ice core, suggesting that localized phenomena may be responsible for the variability in the latter record during the Eemian.

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