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Speleothem evidence of warm episodes in northeast France during Marine Oxygen Isotope Stage 3 and implications for permafrost distribution in northern Europe

  • Edwige Pons-Branchu (a1) (a2), Bruno Hamelin (a1), Benoit Losson (a3), Stephane Jaillet (a4) and Jacques Brulhet (a5)...

U–Th ages have been obtained by TIMS on the growth periods of a stalagmite from the “Grotte des Puits de Pierre-la-Treiche” (northeastern France), during the middle part of the “Weichselian glaciation” (Marine Isotope Stage 3), between 55.36 ± 0.95 and 53.34 ± 0.49 ka and around 45.85 ± 0.49 ka. These episodes are contemporaneous with abrupt climatic variations recorded in Greenland ice cores (Greenland interstadials 12, 14 and 15) that have been previously recognized in European speleothems. They also coincide with two interstadials, known as “Goulotte” and “Pile” in the Grande Pile pollen sequence (eastern France), which have been correlated with the Moershoofd complex in the Netherlands. Such evidence of speleothem deposition related to temperate episodes gives a strong indication of the absence of continuous shallow permafrost during the middle part of MIS 3 in northeastern France.

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