The anatomy of abrupt climate change: dissecting the palaeo-record to trace the mechanisms of climate variability

27.08 - 31.08.2018  
Gniew, Poland

The EGU Galileo conference "The anatomy of abrupt climate change: dissecting the palaeo-record to trace the mechanisms of climate variability", hosted by the INTIMATE network, will be held from 27-31 August 2018 in Gniew, Poland.


The meeting and all accommodation will be at the Hotel Zamek Gniew, on the banks of the Vistula River. The hotel is an approximately 1-hour drive south of Gdańsk. Coach transfers will be organised on 27 and 31 August.


Our understanding of the parameters of future change is born out of models and observations that are best tested in the laboratory of the past. Increasingly detailed, i.e. sub-decadal, reconstructions of climate change during past abrupt transitions have revealed substantial spatiotemporal heterogeneity in the response of the climate systems to a forcing. The identification of spatial patterns as well as temporal leads and lags in climatic behaviour is implicit for the identification of mechanisms, vulnerabilities and thresholds in the climate system.

In 1998 Björck et al. published an event stratigraphy for the North Atlantic realm, exploring past climate connections during the abrupt climate changes of the Last Glacial to Interglacial Transition and spurring two decades of collaborative research by participants in the open INTegrating Ice core, MArine and TErrestrial records (INTIMATE) network. The wealth of palaeoclimate and palaeoenvironmental datasets generated since that time, covering all areas of the earth, has produced an extremely detailed record of past climate change on local, regional and global scales. The latest event stratigraphy by Rasmussen et al. (2014) now reaches back to 123 ka BP.

To fully diagnose the mechanisms behind the complex teleconnections of past abrupt transitions, requires not only chronologically-precise comparisons of independent proxy records (both within and between archives), but also models of atmosphere-ocean-biosphere processes, and a better understanding of proxy-sensitivities to different aspects of climate and environmental change (e.g. temperature, precipitation, nutrient availability, sunlight).

Celebrating the latest developments in palaeoclimate science as well as two decades of INTIMATE research, this Galileo conference will look to further uncover the “Anatomy of Abrupt Climate Change” by bringing together researchers studying ice core, marine or terrestrial records with different proxies (e.g. pollen, stable isotopes, biomarkers, chemical composition), and those using physical models as a means of exploring climate system and proxy behavioural processes. Together we will review and explore what we have learnt, and set out what we must continue to learn, from collecting and connecting diverse high-resolution palaeoclimate archives, in order to achieve a greater understanding of the signals within.

For more information on the INTIMATE network, and how to get involved, see


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The conference will be organised into three cross-cutting themes, which will each review, inspect and connect the latest data about abrupt climate changes. Abstracts for poster and oral presentations are invited under these three headings:

Theme 1: Integrating records of climate and environment over the last glacial to interglacial cycle

Exploring methodologies for the integration of palaeoenvironmental records, e.g. by using independent chronologies, marker horizons or time-transfer function techniques New findings from connected ice-core, marine and / or terrestrial environmental records Considering chronological uncertainties in the inter-comparison of records Studies of leads, lags and synchronous change on local to global scales Integration of complex terrestrial archives into regional compilations

Theme 2: Resolving proxy signals of climate change and environmental response

Spatial and temporal variability in proxy-signals at abrupt transitions Quantification of palaeoclimate proxies Modelling proxy signals and uncertainties Toward annual-decadal scale resolution of environmental change New tools and techniques in palaeoenvironmental reconstruction

Theme 3: Diagnosing global climate mechanisms of abrupt change

Integrating modelling approaches to test climate mechanisms Scaling up from local processes to global teleconnections Learning from data – model comparisons Drivers and responders at past abrupt climates changes (e.g. D/O events, H-events, LGIT).


The abstract submission deadline is 30 April 2018.

Read requirements to submit an abstract in one of the three themes (above):


Registration opens in May and closes 27 June 2018.

Find out more:

Further information

Go to the official website: