The journal Quaternary launches a new special issue entitled ‘Speleothem records and climate‘, edited by Prof. Sandy Harrison (Reading Univ., UK) and Dr. Laia Comas (Univ. College Dublin, Ireland). The special issue is an initiative of the SISAL Working Group of PAGES and invites contributions from the community documenting speleothem records and their interpretation for key regions of the world particularly, but not exclusivey, contributions drawing on the SISAL database. Methodological contributions, including innovative approaches to dating, interpretation, climate reconstruction, and data-model comparison are also welcome. Submission are open until 30 September 2018.
Given their high temporal resolution and the excellent opportunities for dating, speleothem records provide a unique opportunity for assessing climate change on various spatial and temporal scales, over the last 21,000 years and beyond. Measurements made on speleothems, including stable isotopes of oxygen and carbon (δ18O, δ13C) and various trace elements, are widely used to reconstruct changes in the hydrological cycle and in atmospheric composition. Furthermore, regional syntheses of speleothem data provide an opportunity to reconstruct changes in atmospheric circulation patterns. Such syntheses open up the possibility of using speleothem records to evaluate state-of-the-art climate models that explicitly simulate water and carbon isotopes and/or atmospheric tracers such as dust.