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Title: Deep ocean carbonate ion increase during mid Miocene CO2 decline
Authors: Kender, Sev
Yu, J.
Peck, V. L.
First Published: 26-Feb-2014
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
Citation: Scientific Reports 4, Article number: 4187
Abstract: Characterised by long term cooling and abrupt ice sheet expansion on Antarctica ~14 Ma ago, the mid Miocene marked the beginning of the modern ice-house world, yet there is still little consensus on its causes, in part because carbon cycle dynamics are not well constrained. In particular, changes in carbonate ion concentration ([CO32−]) in the ocean, the largest carbon reservoir of the ocean-land-atmosphere system, are poorly resolved. We use benthic foraminiferal B/Ca ratios to reconstruct relative changes in [CO32−] from the South Atlantic, East Pacific, and Southern Oceans. Our results suggest an increase of perhaps ~40 μmol/kg may have occurred between ~15 and 14 Ma in intermediate to deep waters in each basin. This long-term increase suggests elevated alkalinity input, perhaps from the Himalaya, rather than other shorter-term mechanisms such as ocean circulation or ecological changes, and may account for some of the proposed atmospheric CO2 decline before ~14 Ma.
DOI Link: 10.1038/srep04187
ISSN: 2045-2322
eISSN: 2045-2322
Version: Publisher Version
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License (CC BY 3.0). To view a copy of this license, visit
Description: Supplementary information available at
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, Dept. of Geology

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