A new Holocene relative sea level curve for the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica

Hocking, Emma, Bentley, Michael, Hodgson, Dominic, Roberts, Stephen J., Fretwell, Peter, Lloyd, Jerry, Larter, Robert, Whitehouse, Pippa, Leng, Melanie, Monien, Patrick and Moreton, Steven (2011) A new Holocene relative sea level curve for the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica. Quaternary Science Reviews, 30 (21-22). pp. 3152-3170. ISSN 0277-3791

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quascirev.2011.07.021

Abstract

Precise relative sea level (RSL) data are important for inferring regional ice sheet histories, as well as helping to validate numerical models of ice sheet evolution and glacial isostatic adjustment. Here we develop a new RSL curve for Fildes Peninsula, South Shetland Islands (SSIs), a sub-Antarctic archipelago peripheral to the northern Antarctic Peninsula ice sheet, by integrating sedimentary evidence from isolation basins with geomorphological evidence from raised beaches. This combined approach yields not only a Holocene RSL curve, but also the spatial pattern of how RSL change varied across the archipelago. The curve shows a mid-Holocene RSL highstand on Fildes Peninsula at 15.5 m above mean sea level between 8000 and 7000 cal a BP. Subsequently RSL gradually fell as a consequence of isostatic uplift in response to regional deglaciation. We propose that isostatic uplift occurred at a non-steady rate, with a temporary pause in ice retreat ca. 7200 cal a BP, leading to a short-lived RSL rise of w1 m and forming a second peak to the mid-Holocene highstand. Two independent approaches were taken to constrain the long-term tectonic uplift rate of the SSIs at 0.22e0.48 m/ka, placing the tectonic contribution to the reconstructed RSL highstand between 1.4 and 2.9 m. Finally, we make comparisons to predictions from three global sea level models.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Emma Hocking formerly published as Emma Watcham.
Subjects: F800 Physical and Terrestrial Geographical and Environmental Sciences
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Geography and Environmental Sciences
Depositing User: Helen Pattison
Date Deposited: 20 Apr 2012 15:20
Last Modified: 10 Aug 2015 11:17
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/6381

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