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Glacial-interglacial excursion in the concentration of atmospheric CO_2: effect in the ^(13)C/^(12)C ratio in wood cellulose

Krishnamurthy, R. V. and Epstein, S. (1990) Glacial-interglacial excursion in the concentration of atmospheric CO_2: effect in the ^(13)C/^(12)C ratio in wood cellulose. Tellus B, 42 (5). pp. 423-434. ISSN 0280-6509. doi:10.1034/j.1600-0889.1990.t01-5-00003.x.

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Stable carbon isotope ratios (^(13)C/^(12)C) of cellulose extracted from wood belonging to the last glacial-maximum period (20 ± 2k yr) is on the average 4‰ higher than that for the corresponding ratios from the recent interglacial age, and could not be the result of any changes in humidity or temperature alone. This temporal variation of δ^(13)C in wood cellulose corresponds chronologically to the reduced concentration of atmospheric CO_2 measured in glacial ice cores, thus providing the first direct evidence of the effect of reduced atmospheric CO_2 concentration on land biota. The higher δ^(13)C in wood cellulose and the manner in which it varies with time could be explained if, in addition to causes introduced by a changing ocean chemistry during glacial time, there is an additional carbon reservoir created by vegetation flourishing in the newly exposed land surfaces accompanying a lowering of the sea level.

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Additional Information:© 1990 Co-Action Publishing. This journal is published under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC-BY 4.0) License. Manuscript received 13 September 1988; in final form 19 April 1990. We are grateful to the many individuals who supplied us with age-determined samples of this study. In particular, we are indebted to the following: R. Berger, S. Burner, L. D. Carter, T. E. Cerling, B. Criss, K. Echelmeyer, C. J. Ferguson, T. D. Hamilton, I. H. Mercer, D. Mickelson, K. Nagy, C. L. Oman, R. L. Phipps, H. Polach, M. Rubin, E. Spiker, B. N. Smith, H. E. Suess, K. Vancleve and S. Wood. This research was supported by Grant NSF EAR-8504096. We thank Joseph Ruth and Eleanor Dent for technical assistance. Contribution No. 4524 of the Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, California Institute of Technology.
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Caltech Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences4524
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ID Code:42137
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:31 Oct 2013 22:04
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