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      Sediment controls dynamic behavior of a Cordilleran Ice Stream at the Last Glacial Maximum

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          Abstract

          The uncertain response of marine terminating outlet glaciers to climate change at time scales beyond short-term observation limits models of future sea level rise. At temperate tidewater margins, abundant subglacial meltwater forms morainal banks (marine shoals) or ice-contact deltas that reduce water depth, stabilizing grounding lines and slowing or reversing glacial retreat. Here we present a radiocarbon-dated record from Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) Site U1421 that tracks the terminus of the largest Alaskan Cordilleran Ice Sheet outlet glacier during Last Glacial Maximum climate transitions. Sedimentation rates, ice-rafted debris, and microfossil and biogeochemical proxies, show repeated abrupt collapses and slow advances typical of the tidewater glacier cycle observed in modern systems. When global sea level rise exceeded the local rate of bank building, the cycle of readvances stopped leading to irreversible retreat. These results support theory that suggests sediment dynamics can control tidewater terminus position on an open shelf under temperate conditions delaying climate-driven retreat.

          Abstract

          Tidewater glaciers in fjords can advance/retreat independent of climate due to stabilization by sediments at their termini. We show that an Alaskan paleo-ice stream behaved similarly on an open shelf, suggesting that increased sediment flux may delay catastrophic retreat of outlet glaciers in a warming world.

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          Most cited references60

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          Preservation of elemental and isotopic source identification of sedimentary organic matter

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            Organic geochemical proxies of paleoceanographic, paleolimnologic, and paleoclimatic processes

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              Recent atmospheric warming and retreat of ice shelves on the Antarctic Peninsula

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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                cowanea@appstate.edu
                Journal
                Nat Commun
                Nat Commun
                Nature Communications
                Nature Publishing Group UK (London )
                2041-1723
                14 April 2020
                14 April 2020
                2020
                : 11
                : 1826
                Affiliations
                [1 ]ISNI 0000 0001 2179 3802, GRID grid.252323.7, Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences, , Appalachian State University, ; Box 32067, Boone, NC 28608 USA
                [2 ]ISNI 0000 0000 9281 5645, GRID grid.266150.6, School of Geoscience, Physics, and Safety, , University of Central Missouri, ; Warrensburg, MO 64093 USA
                [3 ]Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, Am Alten Hafen 26, 27568 Bremerhaven, Germany
                [4 ]Center for Marine Environmental Sciences, University of Bremen/MARUM, 28359 Bremen, Germany
                [5 ]ISNI 0000 0001 2112 1969, GRID grid.4391.f, College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences, , Oregon State University, ; Corvallis, OR 97331 USA
                [6 ]ISNI 0000 0001 2188 8502, GRID grid.266832.b, Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, , University of New Mexico, ; Albuquerque, NM 87131 USA
                [7 ]ISNI 0000 0004 1936 7312, GRID grid.34421.30, Department of Geological and Atmospheric Sciences, , Iowa State University, ; Ames, IA 50011 USA
                [8 ]ISNI 0000 0004 1936 8091, GRID grid.15276.37, Department of Geological Sciences, , University of Florida, ; Gainesville, FL 32611 USA
                [9 ]ISNI 0000 0004 1936 9924, GRID grid.89336.37, Institute for Geophysics & Department of Geological Sciences, Jackson School of Geosciences, , University of Texas at Austin, ; Austin, TX 78758 USA
                [10 ]ISNI 0000 0001 2180 7477, GRID grid.1001.0, Research School of Earth Science, , The Australian National University, ; Canberra, ACT 2601 Australia
                Author information
                http://orcid.org/0000-0001-6512-5769
                http://orcid.org/0000-0002-2975-4717
                http://orcid.org/0000-0003-0724-4131
                http://orcid.org/0000-0001-9587-1842
                http://orcid.org/0000-0003-4923-3553
                http://orcid.org/0000-0003-0248-489X
                http://orcid.org/0000-0003-4740-9068
                http://orcid.org/0000-0002-8064-5903
                Article
                15579
                10.1038/s41467-020-15579-0
                7156478
                32286283
                e5c76674-6f82-4cb2-8a84-ecdd025141d4
                © The Author(s) 2020

                Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/.

                History
                : 25 August 2019
                : 17 March 2020
                Funding
                Funded by: FundRef https://doi.org/10.13039/100000001, National Science Foundation (NSF);
                Award ID: OCE-1434945
                Award Recipient :
                Categories
                Article
                Custom metadata
                © The Author(s) 2020

                Uncategorized
                cryospheric science,palaeoclimate,sedimentology
                Uncategorized
                cryospheric science, palaeoclimate, sedimentology

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