at 13 ("Warming of 1[degrees]C relative to 1880-1920 keeps global temperature close to the Holocene range, but warming of 2[degrees]C, to at least the Eemian
level, could cause major dislocations for civilization.
, Early and Late Vistulian, and Holocene vegetation in the region of Machnacz peatbog near Bialystok (NR Poland).
It was created during the Eemian
period, when temperatures were 3-5C warmer than they are today, when Stone Age hunter gatherers had spread from Africa to the Middle East and animals such as the hippopotamus were roaming in what is now the Thames estuary.
In a new study, scientists have used a 2,540 metre long Greenland ice core to reach back to the Eemian
period 115-130 thousand years ago and reconstruct the Greenland temperature and ice sheet extent back through the last interglacial.
By contrast, marine transgression onto the Sunda Platform comparable to present sea levels occurred at 400 K (Holsteinian), 325 K, and 125 K (Eemian
) years BP; the two highest of these episodes, the Holsteinian and Eemian
, saw sea levels perhaps 5 m higher than present.
In studying cores drilled from both ice sheets and deep ocean sediments, Hansen found that global mean temperatures during the Eemian
period, which began about 130,000 years ago and lasted about 15,000 years, were less than 1 degree Celsius warmer than today.
CSIRO's Dr David Etheridge, one of several Australian scientists involved in the North Greenland Eemian
Ice Drilling (NEEM) project, says drilling reached bedrock at a depth of 2537 metres in late July.
Ice core samples from Eemian
period 130,000 to 115,000 years ago - the last time Earth's climate was a few degrees warmer than today - could help forecast the impacts of current global warming, the researchers said.
For example, paleosols formed in glacial deposits, such as the Sangamon paleosol in the United States and Canada (Hall 2000) and the Eemian
soil in Europe (Stremme 1998), bave been important in identifying ancient surfaces and interpreting interglacial climates.
The first dates referring to the Eemian
age (90 000 and 100 000 TL yr BP; Kajak et al.
2] concentrations reached even close to such levels in the past - during the Eemian
interglacial period, for example, beginning 135,000 years ago - they were accompanied by a rapid rise in temperatures.
Conditions during that period, the Eemian
, interest scientists in part because they may shed light on how easily today's climate might shift.