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The mid-Cretaceous super plume, carbon dioxide, and global warmingCarbon-dioxide releases associated with a mid-Cretaceous super plume and the emplacement of the Ontong-Java Plateau have been suggested as a principal cause of the mid-Cretaceous global warming. A carbonate-silicate cycle model is developed to quantify the possible climatic effects of these CO2 releases, utilizing four different formulations for the rate of silicate-rock weathering as a function of atmospheric CO2. CO2 emissions resulting from super-plume tectonics could have produced atmospheric CO2 levels from 3.7 to 14.7 times the modern preindustrial value of 285 ppm. Based on the temperature sensitivity to CO2 increases used in the weathering-rate formulations, this would cause a global warming of from 2.8 to 7.7 C over today's glogal mean temperature. Altered continental positions and higher sea level may have been contributed about 4.8 C to mid-Cretaceous warming. Thus, the combined effects of paleogeographic changes and super-plume related CO2 emissions could be in the range of 7.6 to 12.5 C, within the 6 to 14 C range previously estimated for mid-Cretaceous warming. CO2 releases from oceanic plateaus alone are unlikely to have been directly responsible for more than 20 percent of the mid-Cretaceous increase in atmospheric CO2.
Document ID
19910055803
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
Authors
Caldeira, Ken (New York University NY, United States)
Rampino, Michael R. (NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies; New York University NY, United States)
Date Acquired
August 15, 2013
Publication Date
June 1, 1991
Publication Information
Publication: Geophysical Research Letters
Volume: 18
ISSN: 0094-8276
Subject Category
METEOROLOGY AND CLIMATOLOGY
Funding Number(s)
CONTRACT_GRANT: NAGW-1697
CONTRACT_GRANT: NGT-50470
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Other