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Interdecadal Pacific variability and eastern Australian megadroughts over the last millennium


Vance, TR and Roberts, JL and Plummer, CT and Kiem, AS and van Ommen, TD, Interdecadal Pacific variability and eastern Australian megadroughts over the last millennium, Geophysical Research Letters, 42, (1) pp. 129-137. ISSN 0094-8276 (2015) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2014 American Geophysical Union

DOI: doi:10.1002/2014GL062447


The Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation (IPO) influences multidecadal drought risk across the Pacific, but there are no millennial-length, high-resolution IPO reconstructions for quantifying long-term drought risk. In Australia, drought risk increases in positive phases of the IPO, yet few suitable rainfall proxies and short (∼100 years) instrumental records mean large uncertainties remain around drought frequency and duration. Likewise, it is unknown whether megadroughts have occurred in Australia's past. In this study, an atmospheric teleconnection in the Indian Ocean midlatitudes linking East Antarctica and Australia is exploited to produce the first accurate, annually dated millennial-length IPO reconstruction from the Law Dome (East Antarctica) ice core. Combined with an eastern Australian rainfall proxy from Law Dome, the first millennial-length Australian megadrought (>5 year duration) reconstruction is presented. Eight megadroughts are identified including one 39 year drought (A.D. 11741212), which occurred during an unprecedented century of aridity (A.D. 11021212).

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:Interdecadal Pacific Oscillation, reconstruction, megadroughts, Australia
Research Division:Earth Sciences
Research Group:Physical geography and environmental geoscience
Research Field:Palaeoclimatology
Objective Division:Environmental Policy, Climate Change and Natural Hazards
Objective Group:Understanding climate change
Objective Field:Effects of climate change on Australia (excl. social impacts)
UTAS Author:Vance, TR (Dr Tessa Vance)
UTAS Author:Roberts, JL (Dr Jason Roberts)
UTAS Author:Plummer, CT (Mr Christopher Plummer)
UTAS Author:van Ommen, TD (Dr Tas van Ommen)
ID Code:98025
Year Published:2015
Web of Science® Times Cited:91
Deposited By:CRC-Antarctic Climate & Ecosystems
Deposited On:2015-01-29
Last Modified:2017-10-30
Downloads:349 View Download Statistics

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