Deciphering local and regional hydroclimate resolves contradicting evidence on the Asian monsoon evolution

Annabel Wolf*, Vasile Ersek*, Tobias Braun, Amanda D. French, David McGee, Stefano M. Bernasconi, Vanessa Skiba, Michael L. Griffiths, Kathleen R. Johnson, Jens Fohlmeister, Sebastian F. M. Breitenbach, Francesco S.R. Pausata, Clay R. Tabor, Jack Longman, William H. G. Roberts, Deepak Chandan, W. Richard Peltier, Ulrich Salzmann, Deborah Limbert, Hong Quan TrinhAnh Duc Trinh

*Corresponding author for this work

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The winter and summer monsoons in Southeast Asia are important but highly variable sources of rainfall. Current understanding of the winter monsoon is limited by conflicting proxy observations, resulting from the decoupling of regional atmospheric circulation patterns and local rainfall dynamics. These signals are difficult to decipher in paleoclimate reconstructions. Here, we present a winter monsoon speleothem record from Southeast Asia covering the Holocene and find that winter and summer rainfall changed synchronously, forced by changes in the Pacific and Indian Oceans. In contrast, regional atmospheric circulation shows an inverse relation between winter and summer controlled by seasonal insolation over the Northern Hemisphere. We show that disentangling the local and regional signal in paleoclimate reconstructions is crucial in understanding and projecting winter and summer monsoon variability in Southeast Asia.
Original languageEnglish
Article number5697
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalNature Communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sept 2023

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