Articles | Volume 17, issue 6
Research article
25 Nov 2021
Research article |  | 25 Nov 2021

Maastrichtian–Rupelian paleoclimates in the southwest Pacific – a critical re-evaluation of biomarker paleothermometry and dinoflagellate cyst paleoecology at Ocean Drilling Program Site 1172

Peter K. Bijl, Joost Frieling, Margot J. Cramwinckel, Christine Boschman, Appy Sluijs, and Francien Peterse

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Cited articles

Anagnostou, E., John, E. H., Edgar, K. M., Foster, G. L., Ridgwell, A., Inglis, G. N., Pancost, R. D., Lunt, D. J., and Pearson, P. N.: Changing atmospheric CO2 concentration was the primary driver of early Cenozoic climate, Nature, 533, 380–384,, 2016. 
Anagnostou, E., John, E. H., Babila, T. L., Sexton, P. F., Ridgwell, A., Lunt, D. J., Pearson, P. N., Chalk, T. B., Pancost, R. D., Foster, G. L.: Proxy evidence for state-dependence of climate sensitivity in the Eocene greenhouse, Nat. Commun., 11, 4436,, 2020. 
Barke, J., Abels, H. A., Sangiorgi, F., Greenwood, D. R., Sweet, A. R., Donders, T., Reichart, G. J., Lotter, A. F., and Brinkhuis, H.: Orbitally forced Azolla blooms and middle Eocene Arctic hydrology: Clues from palynology, Geology, 39, 427–430,, 2011. 
Baxter, A. J., Hopmans, E. C., Russell, J. M., and Sinninghe Damsté, J. S.: Bacterial GMGTs in east african lake sediments: Their potential as palaeotemperature indicators, Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta, 259, 155–169,, 2019. 
Bijl, P.: bijlpeter83/DINOSTRAT: Release DINOSTRAT V1 for peer review process (1.0), Zenodo [data set],, 2021. 
Short summary
Here, we use the latest insights for GDGT and dinocyst-based paleotemperature and paleoenvironmental reconstructions in late Cretaceous–early Oligocene sediments from ODP Site 1172 (East Tasman Plateau, Australia). We reconstruct strong river runoff during the Paleocene–early Eocene, a progressive decline thereafter with increased wet/dry seasonality in the northward-drifting hinterland. Our critical review leaves the anomalous warmth of the Eocene SW Pacific Ocean unexplained.