Palaeoclimate Evolution in Siberia and the Russian Far East from the Oligocene to Pliocene – Evidence from Fruit and Seed Floras


Abstract: The Cenozoic continental deposits of Western Siberia, Eastern Siberia and the Russian Far East are best described on the basis of carpological records. The palaeoclimate evolution has been reconstructed quantitatively (Coexistence Approach) providing inferred data on temperature, precipitation and the mean annual range of these parameters. Climate curves document the transition from very warm and humid conditions in the Late Oligocene via the Middle Miocene Climatic Optimum to a cool temperate climate during the Pliocene. Compared with other time intervals the Miocene climate is the most comprehensively reconstructed. For the Middle Miocene the Siberian and Far Eastern data are combined with the 'NECLIME data set' available for the same time slice, thus allowing a synthesis and discussion of temperature and precipitation patterns on a Eurasia-wide scale. The MAT pattern on a Eurasia-wide scale shows a strong latitudinal temperature increase from the Russian Far East to China, and a well expressed longitudinal gradient from Western Siberia to warmer conditions in Europe, the Black Sea area and the Eastern Mediterranean. The reconstructed MAP of Western Siberia is around 1000 mm, which is close to the data obtained for the continental interior of Northern China but lower than most of the data in the Eurasian data set.

Keywords: Siberia, Russian Far East, Oligocene, Miocene, Pliocene, fruit and seed floras, palaeoclimate

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