Empirical relationships between elevation and the stable isotope composition of precipitation and surface waters: Considerations for studies of paleoelevation change

Citation
Ma. Poage et Cp. Chamberlain, Empirical relationships between elevation and the stable isotope composition of precipitation and surface waters: Considerations for studies of paleoelevation change, AM J SCI, 301(1), 2001, pp. 1-15
Citations number
67
Language
INGLESE
art.tipo
Article
Categorie Soggetti
Earth Sciences
Journal title
AMERICAN JOURNAL OF SCIENCE
ISSN journal
0002-9599 → ACNP
Volume
301
Issue
1
Year of publication
2001
Pages
1 - 15
Database
ISI
SICI code
0002-9599(200101)301:1<1:ERBEAT>2.0.ZU;2-5
Abstract
A compilation of 68 studies from throughout many of the world's mountain be lts reveals an empirically consistent and linear relationship between chang e in elevation and change in the isotopic composition of precipitation alon g altitudinal transects, The isotopic composition of precipitation decrease s linearly with increasing elevation in most regions of the world except in the Himalayas and at elevations > 5000 m, There are no significant differe nces in isotopic lapse rates from most regions of the world (similar to0.28 permil/100 m) except at the extreme latitudes where isotopic lapse rates a re higher. Given information on past changes in the isotopic composition of precipitation preserved in pedogenic or authigenic minerals, this global i sotopic lapse rate can be used to place numerical constraints on the topogr aphic development of some ancient mountain belts or plateaus. There are many complicating factors that can confound interpretation of pal eoelevation change based on stable isotopes, and many of these are unique t o specific mountain belts or time periods, Relevant to all stable isotope b ased paleoelevation change studies is the temperature dependent isotope fra ctionation between a pedogenic or authigenic mineral and the water from whi ch it forms. In cases where isotopic proxy minerals are sampled from locali ties where temperature will change simultaneously with elevation change, th e apparent change in the isotopic composition of precipitation may be dampe ned by several permil, This suggests that samples taken from the rainshadow side of an emerging orographic barrier may be more likely to preserve isot opic changes resulting from mountain uplift than samples taken from atop a rising mountain range or plateau.