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24 mars 2017
A multi-proxy approach to drought reconstruction

Fig. 1. Comparison of the speleothem fluid inclusion and tree ring cellulose δ18O time series (z-scores). The cellulose δ18O chronology has been smoothed by a 25-year running mean


In palaeoclimate reconstructions, the combination of proxy records measured in different climate archives is challenging because of the uncertainties associated with each proxy, but it can also help reduce some of these uncertainties. Here, we present a novel approach to combine speleothem and tree ring proxies for a drought reconstruction of the last 640 years: a fluid inclusion δ18O record from a stalagmite from Villars Cave (southwest France) and a tree ring cellulose δ18O record of Quercus spp. from the nearby Angoulême area. The δ18O of the fluid inclusions is taken as an estimate of the δ18O of the trees’ source water. Then, the cellulose and source water δ18O are used to calculate the leaf water isotopic enrichment, as well as relative humidity, which is the dominant controlling factor of this enrichment.

 

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