Evidence For Decadal and Century Scale Climate and Oceanic Variability in the Guaymas Basin, Gulf of California, Over the Last Millenium
Ana Christina Ravelo2
- Earth and Planetary Sciences Department, UCSC
- Ocean Sciences Department, UCSC
- Moss Landing Marine Lab
Natural climate change affects coastal water resources, human land use, and marine biological productivity. In particular, the seasonal migration of the Intertropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) is influenced by changes in global-scale temperature and pressure gradients and is responsible for spatial changes in summertime rainfall in Mesoamerica impacting regional water resources and the strength of upwelling. In October 2014, aboard the Research Vessel El Puma, a 3.9 meter long core (G14-P12) was recovered from the Northeast flank of the Guaymas Basin in the Gulf of California within the oxygen minimum zone (27˚52.11’N, 111˚41.51’W, water depth of 677m) to investigate changes in seasonal upwelling and Central Mexico rainfall over the last ~1000 years. The age model was developed using Pb210, C14 and lamination counting. The time interval includes the Little Ice Age and the Medieval Warm Period. Biological productivity and precipitation proxy records were produced using an X-Ray Fluorescence (XRF) core-scanner and a color line scanner to generate a record of bulk chemistry and color reflectance. The records indicate marked decadal and centennial scale variability in the lithologic composition of the sediment superimposed on millimeter-scale variability that reflects the presence of seasonally laminated sediments. Nitrogen isotopic and nitrogen weight % measurements were used, in combination with the scanned data, to interpret changes in nitrate utilization and biological productivity. These new records will have broad implications on the link between regional coastal environmental conditions in the Gulf of California and global climate change.