Yang Liu, Jingyun Zheng, Zhixin Hao, Xuezhen Zhang

Advances in Atmospheric Sciences

Published date June 29, 2017

Unprecedented warming revealed from multi-proxy reconstruction of temperature in southern China for the past 160 years

  • Examines data including the southern limit of snowfall recorded in Chinese documents, chronologies of tree-ring width, and tree-ring stable oxygen isotope (δ18O)
  • Reconstructs the annual temperature anomaly in southern China during 1850–2009 using the method of signal decomposition and synthesis
  • Results show that the linear trend was 0.47°C per century over 1871–2009, and the two most rapid warming intervals occurred in 1877–1938 and 1968–2007, at rates of 0.125°C per decade and 0.258°C per decade, respectively
  • Decadal variation shows that the temperature in the moderate warm interval of the 1910s–1930s was notably lower than that of the 1980s–2000s, which suggests that the warming since the 1980s was unprecedented for the past 160 years, though a warming hiatus existed in the 2000s
  • Provides an independent case to validate the global warming for the past 160 years and its hiatus recently, because the proxy data are not affected by urbanization