Eolian evidence from the Chinese Loess Plateau

The onset of the Late Cenozoic Great Glaciation in the Northern Hemisphere and Qinghai-Xizang Plateau uplift forcing

Zhisheng An*, Sumin Wang, Xihao Wu, Mingyang Chen, Donghuai Sun, Xiuming Liu, Fubao Wang, Li Li, Youbin Sun, Weijian Zhou, Jie Zhou, Xiaodong Liu, Huayu Lu, Yunxiang Zhang, Guangrong Dong, Xiaoke Qiang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

68 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

On the basis of a newly-constructed record of magnetic susceptibility (SUS) and the depositional rate change of eolian loess-red clay sequences in the last 7.2 Ma BP from the Loess Plateau, together with a comparison of a record of δ18O values from the equatorial East Pacific Ocean and eolian Quartz flux variations from the North Pacific Ocean, the evolutionary process of the Late Cenozoic Great Glaciation in the Northern Hemisphere can be divided into three stages: the arrival stage around 7.2-3.4 Ma BP, the initial stage at about 3.4-2.6 Ma BP, and the Great Ice Age since 2.6 Ma BP. The evolution of the East Asian monsoon is characterized by paired winter and summer monsoons, and it is basically composed of the initial stage of weak winter and summer monsoons, the transitional stage of simultaneous increase in intensity of winter and summer monsoons, and the prevailing stage of strong winter and weak summer monsoons, or weak winter and strong summer monsoons. The Late Cenozoic global tectonic uplift, particularly the Qinghai-Xizang Plateau uplift and the associated CO2 concentration variation, controls the cooling processes of the onset of Great Glaciation and the long-term changes of East Asian monsoon climate in the Northern Hemisphere to a large extent. The accelerating uplift of the Qinghai-Xizang Plateau between 3.4 and 2.6 Ma BP provided an important driving force to global climiatic change.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)258-271
Number of pages14
JournalScience in China, Series D: Earth Sciences
Volume42
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1999

Keywords

  • East Asian monsoon evolution
  • Eolian deposits of Loess Plateau
  • Great Glaciation in the Northern Hemisphere
  • Late Cenozoic
  • Qinghai-Xizang Plateau uplift

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