Journal article

Southern high latitude climate variability in the late Cretaceous greenhouse world

Stephen J Gallagher, Barbara E Wagstaff, Jennifer G Baird, Malcolm W Wallace, Chung Leong Li

GLOBAL AND PLANETARY CHANGE | ELSEVIER | Published : 2008

Abstract

A palynological study of oil exploration wells in the Gippsland Basin southeastern Australia has provided a record of southern high latitude climate variability for the last 12 million years of the Cretaceous greenhouse world. During this time, the vegetation was dominated by a cool to temperate flora of Podocarpaceae, Proteaceae and Nothofagidites spp. at a latitude of 60°S. Milankovitch forced cyclic alternations from drier to wetter climatic periods caused vegetation variability from 72 to 77 Ma. This climate change was probably related to the waxing and waning of ephemeral (100 ky) small ice sheets in Antarctica during times of insolation minima and maxima. Drying and cooling after 72 Ma..

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