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Little River, New Zealand

D'Arrigo R.,Columbia University | Palmer J.,Gondwana Tree Ring Laboratory | Ummenhofer C.C.,University of New South Wales | Kyaw N.N.,FRI Compound | Krusic P.,University of Stockholm
Geophysical Research Letters | Year: 2011

Asian monsoon extremes critically impact much of the globe's population. Key gaps in our understanding of monsoon climate remain due to sparse coverage of paleoclimatic information, despite intensified recent efforts. Here we describe a ring width chronology of teak, one of the first high-resolution proxy records for the nation of Myanmar. Based on 29 samples from 20 living trees and spanning from 1613-2009, this record, from the Maingtha forest reserve north of Mandalay, helps fill a substantial gap in spatial coverage of paleoclimatic records for monsoon Asia. Teak growth is positively correlated with rainfall and Palmer Drought Severity Index variability over Myanmar, during and prior to the May-September monsoon season (e.g., r = 0.38 with Yangon rainfall, 0.001, n 68). Importantly, this record also correlates significantly with larger-scale climate indices, including core Indian rainfall (23°N, 76°E; a particularly sensitive index of the monsoon), and the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO). The teak ring width value following the so-called 1997-98 El Niño of the Century suggests that this was one of the most severe droughts in the past ∼300 years in Myanmar. Evidence for past dry conditions inferred for Myanmar is consistent with tree-ring records of decadal megadroughts developed for Thailand and Vietnam. These results confirm the climate signature related to monsoon rainfall in the Myanmar teak record and the considerable potential for future development of climatesensitive chronologies from Myanmar and the broader region of monsoon Asia. Copyright © 2011 by the American Geophysical Union.

Hogg A.,University of Waikato | Turney C.,University of New South Wales | Palmer J.,Gondwana Tree Ring Laboratory | Cook E.,Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory | Buckley B.,Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory
Radiocarbon | Year: 2013

Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (CAMS) Tasmanian Huon pine (Lagarostrobos franklinii) decadal measurements for the interval AD 745-855 suggest a mean interhemispheric radiocarbon offset (20 ± 5 yr), which is considerably lower than the previously reported mean interhemispheric offset for the last 2 millennia (44 ± 17 yr). However, comparable University of Waikato (Wk) New Zealand kauri (Agathis australis) measurements show significantly higher values (56 ± 6 yr), suggesting the possibility of a temporary geographic (intrahemispheric) offset between Tasmania, Australia, and Northland, New Zealand, during at least 1 common time interval. Here, we report 9 new Wk Tasmanian Huon pine measurements from the decades showing the largest Huon/kauri difference. We show statistically indistinguishable Wk Huon and Wk kauri 14C ages, thus dispelling the suggestion of a 14C geographic offset between Tasmania and Northland. © 2013 by the Arizona Board of Regents on behalf of the University of Arizona.

Villalba R.,CONICET | Lara A.,Austral University of Chile | Masiokas M.H.,CONICET | Urrutia R.,Austral University of Chile | And 17 more authors.
Nature Geoscience | Year: 2012

Recent changes in the summer climate of the Southern Hemisphere extra-tropics are primarily related to the dominance of the positive phase of the Southern Annular Mode. This shift in the behaviour of the Southern Annular Mode - essentially a measure of the pressure gradient between Southern Hemisphere mid and high latitudes - has been predominantly induced by polar stratospheric ozone depletion. The concomitant southward expansion of the dry subtropical belts could have consequences for forest growth. Here, we use tree-ring records from over 3,000 trees in South America, Tasmania and New Zealand to identify dominant patterns of tree growth in recent centuries. We show that the foremost patterns of growth between 1950 and 2000 differed significantly from those in the previous 250 years. Specifically, growth was higher than the long-term average in the subalpine forests of Tasmania and New Zealand, but lower in the dry-mesic forests of Patagonia. We further demonstrate that variations in the Southern Annular Mode can explain 12-48% of the tree growth anomalies in the latter half of the twentieth century. Tree-ring-based reconstructions of summer Southern Annular Mode indices suggest that the high frequency of the positive phase since the 1950s is unprecedented in the past 600 years. We propose that changes in the Southern Annular Mode have significantly altered tree growth patterns in the Southern Hemisphere. © 2012 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.

D'Arrigo R.,Lamont Doherty Earth Observatory | Abram N.,Australian National University | Abram N.,Natural Environment Research Council | Ummenhofer C.,University of New South Wales | And 2 more authors.
Climate Dynamics | Year: 2011

The Citarum river basin of western Java, Indonesia, which supplies water to 10 million residents in Jakarta, has become increasingly vulnerable to anthropogenic change. Citarum's streamflow record, only ~45 years in length (1963-present), is too short for understanding the full range of hydrometeorological variability in this important region. Here we present a tree-ring based reconstruction of September-November Citarum streamflow (AD 1759-2006), one of the first such records available for monsoon Asia. Close coupling is observed between decreased tree growth and low streamflow levels, which in turn are associated with drought caused by ENSO warm events in the tropical Pacific and Indian Ocean positive dipole-type variability. Over the full length of record, reconstructed variance was at its weakest during the interval from ~1905-1960, overlapping with a period of unusually-low variability (1920-1960) in the ENSO-Indian Ocean dipole systems. In subsequent decades, increased variance in both the streamflow anomalies and a coral-based SST reconstruction of the Indian Ocean Dipole Mode signal the potential for intensified drought activity and related consequences for water supply and crop productivity in western Java, where much of the country's rice is grown. © 2009 Springer-Verlag.

Hogg A.,University of Waikato | Palmer J.,Gondwana Tree Ring Laboratory | Boswijk G.,University of Auckland | Turney C.,University of New South Wales
Radiocarbon | Year: 2011

The best means for correcting Southern Hemisphere (SH) radiocarbon measurements, which are significantly influenced by temporal variations in the interhemispheric offset, is by the construction of a SH-specific calibration curve from dendrochronologically dated wood. We present here decadal 14C measurements on dendrochronologically secure New Zealand kauri (Agathis australis), covering the period 195 BC-AD 995, extending the range of calibration measurements from New Zealand tree rings to more than 2 millennia. Recently published Tasmanian huon pine (Lagarostrobos franklinii) data for the interval 165 BC to AD 1095 measured at the Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (CAMS) have underestimated standard errors, which need to be re-assessed before the data can be considered for a Southern Hemisphere calibration curve update. The CAMS huon data, unlike the Waikato kauri data presented here, show a significant reduction in the SH offset for the interval AD 775-855. Although these data points are being checked, it is unlikely this represents a temporal geographic location-dependent offset. With re-assessed errors, the huon data set from 165 BC to AD 995 closely matches the new kauri data, with the combined data sets producing a mean interhemispheric offset with IntCal09 of 44 ± 17 yr for the time interval 195 BC-AD 1845. This SH offset is lower than the modeled offset of 55-58 yr used in the construction of SHCal04, and we recommend the lower value be used in future SHCal updates. Although there is an apparent increase in higher frequency events in the SH offset (NZ kauri plus Tasmanian huon) from 200 BC-AD 1000, the reason for this remains unclear. © 2011 by the Arizona Board of Regents on behalf of the University of Arizona.

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