Abrupt Change in Climate and Biotic Systems

Filippo Botta*, Dorthe Dahl-Jensen, Carsten Rahbek, Anders Svensson, David Bravo Nogues

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalReviewResearchpeer-review

    Abstract

    Fifty years ago, Willi Dansgaard and colleagues discovered several abrupt climate change events in Greenland during the last glacial period. Since then, several ice cores retrieved from the Greenland ice sheet have verified the existence of 25 abrupt climate warming events now known as Dansgaard-Oeschger events. These events are characterized by a rapid 10-15°C warming over a few decades followed by a stable period of centuries or millennia before a gradual return to full glacial conditions. Similar warming events have been identified in other paleo-archives in the Northern hemisphere. These findings triggered wide interest in abrupt climate change and its impact on biological diversity, but ambiguous definitions have constrained our ability to assign biotic responses to the different types of climate change. Here, we provide a coherent definition for different types of climatic change, including 'abrupt climate change', and a summary of past abrupt climate-change events. We then review biotic responses to abrupt climate change, from the genetic to the ecosystem level, and show that abrupt climatic and ecological changes have been instrumental in shaping biodiversity. We also identify open questions, such as what causes species resilience after an abrupt change. However, identifying causal relationships between past climate change and biological responses remains difficult. We need to formalize and unify the definition of abrupt change across disciplines and further investigate past abrupt climate change periods to better anticipate and mitigate the impacts on biodiversity and society wrought by human-made climate change.

    Original languageEnglish
    JournalCurrent Biology
    Volume29
    Issue number19
    Pages (from-to)R1045-R1054
    Number of pages10
    ISSN0960-9822
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 7. Oct 2019

    Fingerprint

    Climate change
    climate change
    Biodiversity
    Greenland
    Ice
    biodiversity
    ice
    Ecosystems
    Ecosystem
    global warming
    ecosystems

    Cite this

    Botta, F., Dahl-Jensen, D., Rahbek, C., Svensson, A., & Nogues, D. B. (2019). Abrupt Change in Climate and Biotic Systems. Current Biology, 29(19), R1045-R1054. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2019.08.066
    Botta, Filippo ; Dahl-Jensen, Dorthe ; Rahbek, Carsten ; Svensson, Anders ; Nogues, David Bravo. / Abrupt Change in Climate and Biotic Systems. In: Current Biology. 2019 ; Vol. 29, No. 19. pp. R1045-R1054.
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    abstract = "Fifty years ago, Willi Dansgaard and colleagues discovered several abrupt climate change events in Greenland during the last glacial period. Since then, several ice cores retrieved from the Greenland ice sheet have verified the existence of 25 abrupt climate warming events now known as Dansgaard-Oeschger events. These events are characterized by a rapid 10-15°C warming over a few decades followed by a stable period of centuries or millennia before a gradual return to full glacial conditions. Similar warming events have been identified in other paleo-archives in the Northern hemisphere. These findings triggered wide interest in abrupt climate change and its impact on biological diversity, but ambiguous definitions have constrained our ability to assign biotic responses to the different types of climate change. Here, we provide a coherent definition for different types of climatic change, including 'abrupt climate change', and a summary of past abrupt climate-change events. We then review biotic responses to abrupt climate change, from the genetic to the ecosystem level, and show that abrupt climatic and ecological changes have been instrumental in shaping biodiversity. We also identify open questions, such as what causes species resilience after an abrupt change. However, identifying causal relationships between past climate change and biological responses remains difficult. We need to formalize and unify the definition of abrupt change across disciplines and further investigate past abrupt climate change periods to better anticipate and mitigate the impacts on biodiversity and society wrought by human-made climate change.",
    author = "Filippo Botta and Dorthe Dahl-Jensen and Carsten Rahbek and Anders Svensson and Nogues, {David Bravo}",
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    Botta, F, Dahl-Jensen, D, Rahbek, C, Svensson, A & Nogues, DB 2019, 'Abrupt Change in Climate and Biotic Systems', Current Biology, vol. 29, no. 19, pp. R1045-R1054. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2019.08.066

    Abrupt Change in Climate and Biotic Systems. / Botta, Filippo; Dahl-Jensen, Dorthe; Rahbek, Carsten; Svensson, Anders; Nogues, David Bravo.

    In: Current Biology, Vol. 29, No. 19, 07.10.2019, p. R1045-R1054.

    Research output: Contribution to journalReviewResearchpeer-review

    TY - JOUR

    T1 - Abrupt Change in Climate and Biotic Systems

    AU - Botta, Filippo

    AU - Dahl-Jensen, Dorthe

    AU - Rahbek, Carsten

    AU - Svensson, Anders

    AU - Nogues, David Bravo

    PY - 2019/10/7

    Y1 - 2019/10/7

    N2 - Fifty years ago, Willi Dansgaard and colleagues discovered several abrupt climate change events in Greenland during the last glacial period. Since then, several ice cores retrieved from the Greenland ice sheet have verified the existence of 25 abrupt climate warming events now known as Dansgaard-Oeschger events. These events are characterized by a rapid 10-15°C warming over a few decades followed by a stable period of centuries or millennia before a gradual return to full glacial conditions. Similar warming events have been identified in other paleo-archives in the Northern hemisphere. These findings triggered wide interest in abrupt climate change and its impact on biological diversity, but ambiguous definitions have constrained our ability to assign biotic responses to the different types of climate change. Here, we provide a coherent definition for different types of climatic change, including 'abrupt climate change', and a summary of past abrupt climate-change events. We then review biotic responses to abrupt climate change, from the genetic to the ecosystem level, and show that abrupt climatic and ecological changes have been instrumental in shaping biodiversity. We also identify open questions, such as what causes species resilience after an abrupt change. However, identifying causal relationships between past climate change and biological responses remains difficult. We need to formalize and unify the definition of abrupt change across disciplines and further investigate past abrupt climate change periods to better anticipate and mitigate the impacts on biodiversity and society wrought by human-made climate change.

    AB - Fifty years ago, Willi Dansgaard and colleagues discovered several abrupt climate change events in Greenland during the last glacial period. Since then, several ice cores retrieved from the Greenland ice sheet have verified the existence of 25 abrupt climate warming events now known as Dansgaard-Oeschger events. These events are characterized by a rapid 10-15°C warming over a few decades followed by a stable period of centuries or millennia before a gradual return to full glacial conditions. Similar warming events have been identified in other paleo-archives in the Northern hemisphere. These findings triggered wide interest in abrupt climate change and its impact on biological diversity, but ambiguous definitions have constrained our ability to assign biotic responses to the different types of climate change. Here, we provide a coherent definition for different types of climatic change, including 'abrupt climate change', and a summary of past abrupt climate-change events. We then review biotic responses to abrupt climate change, from the genetic to the ecosystem level, and show that abrupt climatic and ecological changes have been instrumental in shaping biodiversity. We also identify open questions, such as what causes species resilience after an abrupt change. However, identifying causal relationships between past climate change and biological responses remains difficult. We need to formalize and unify the definition of abrupt change across disciplines and further investigate past abrupt climate change periods to better anticipate and mitigate the impacts on biodiversity and society wrought by human-made climate change.

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    SN - 0960-9822

    IS - 19

    ER -

    Botta F, Dahl-Jensen D, Rahbek C, Svensson A, Nogues DB. Abrupt Change in Climate and Biotic Systems. Current Biology. 2019 Oct 7;29(19):R1045-R1054. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2019.08.066