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Discussion papers
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-411
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/acp-2019-411
© Author(s) 2019. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 22 May 2019

Research article | 22 May 2019

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics (ACP).

History of desert dust deposition recorded in the Elbrus ice core

Stanislav Kutuzov1, Michel Legrand2,3, Suzanne Preunkert2,3, Patrick Ginot2,3,6, Vladimir Mikhalenko1, Karim Shukurov4, Alexey Poliukhov5, and Pavel Toropov1,5 Stanislav Kutuzov et al.
  • 1Institute of Geography, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, 119017, Russia
  • 2Université Grenoble Alpes, CNRS, Institut des Géosciences de l’Environnement (IGE), Grenoble, 38402, France
  • 3CNRS, Institut des Géosciences de l’Environnement (IGE), Grenoble, 38402, France
  • 4A.M. Obukhov Institute of Atmospheric Physics of Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, 119017, Russia
  • 5Faculty of Geography, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, 119991, Russia
  • 6Observatoire des Sciences de l’Univers de Grenoble, IRD/UGA/CNRS, Grenoble, 38400, France

Abstract. Ice cores are one of the most valuable paleo-archives. Records from the ice cores can provide information not only about the amount of dust in the atmosphere but also about dust sources and its changes in the past. A 182 m long ice core has been recovered at the western plateau of Mt. Elbrus (5115 m elevation) in 2009. This record was extended with the shallow ice core drilling in 2013. Here we present analysis of the concentrations of Ca2+, a commonly used proxy of dust, recorded in Elbrus ice core over the period 1774–2013. The calcium record reveals a quasi decadal variability with a general increasing trend. Using multiple regression analysis we found a statistically significant spatial correlation of the Elbrus Ca2+ summer concentrations and precipitation and soil moisture content in Levant region (specifically Syria and Iraq). The Ca2+ record also correlates with drought index in North Africa (r = 0.69 p < 0.001) and Middle East regions (r = 0.71 p < 0.001). There is a prominent increase in dust concentration in the ice core over the past 200 years which confirms that the recent droughts in Fertile Crescent 1998–2012 period were most severe at least for the past two centuries. For the 33 years (1979–2012), the significant correlations were found between the Ca2+ and Pacific circulation indexes (PDO, SOI and Niño 4) which may indicate that due to increase in frequency of extreme El Niño and La Niña events with climate warming the influence of circulation over the Pacific Ocean extended to the Middle East.

Stanislav Kutuzov et al.
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Stanislav Kutuzov et al.
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Short summary
Ice cores are one of the most valuable paleo-archives. Here we present analysis of the concentrations of calcium, recorded in ice core from Caucasus over the past 240 years. We found a correlation between dust recorded in ice and precipitation and soil moisture content in the Middle East and North Africa. The prominent increase in dust concentration in the ice core confirms that the recent droughts in Fertile Crescent were most severe at least for the past two centuries.
Ice cores are one of the most valuable paleo-archives. Here we present analysis of the...
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