New evidence for a mid- to late-Holocene change in the marine reservoir effect across the South Pacific Gyre

Petchey, Fiona (2020) New evidence for a mid- to late-Holocene change in the marine reservoir effect across the South Pacific Gyre. Radiocarbon, 62 (1). pp. 127-139.

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View at Publisher Website: https://doi.org/10.1017/RDC.2019.103
 
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Abstract

Holocene climate change in the South Pacific is of major interest to archaeologists and Quaternary researchers. Regional surface ocean radiocarbon (14C) values are an established proxy for studying changing oceanographic and climatic conditions. Unfortunately, radiocarbon variability in the marine environment over the period of specific importance to human colonization of the remote Pacific islands—the last 3500 years—has been poorly studied. In order to build robust and accurate archaeological chronologies using shell, it is important to rectify this. In this paper, radiocarbon marine reservoir offsets (ΔR) are presented from eight archaeological sites, ranging in age from 350 cal BP to 3000 cal BP, and compared to coral datasets from the east Australian coastline. The results indicate that a significant decrease in the South Pacific Gyre ΔR occurred between 2600 and 2250 cal BP, most likely caused by changes in ocean circulation and climate. Accurately recording the timing of variability in reservoir offset is critical to untangling changes in society that took place in the Pacific, in particular, the development of Ancestral Polynesian Society.

Item ID: 62943
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 0033-8222
Keywords: archaeology, marine reservoir correction, South Pacific
Copyright Information: © 2019 by the Arizona Board of Regents on behalf of the University of Arizona
Date Deposited: 11 May 2020 03:01
FoR Codes: 21 HISTORY AND ARCHAEOLOGY > 2101 Archaeology > 210102 Archaeological Science @ 70%
21 HISTORY AND ARCHAEOLOGY > 2101 Archaeology > 210106 Archaeology of New Guinea and Pacific Islands (excl New Zealand) @ 30%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9505 Understanding Past Societies > 950503 Understanding Australias Past @ 50%
96 ENVIRONMENT > 9611 Physical and Chemical Conditions of Water > 961104 Physical and Chemical Conditions of Water in Marine Environments @ 50%
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