A late Cenozoic Earth's crust and climate dynamics record from Lake Baikal

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The sedimentary record from Lake Baikal (Siberia, Russia) has been an important source of information about paleoclimatic variability in the northern hemisphere and dynamics of continental rift development. A lack of reliable chronology has, however, been a major obstacle to fully utilizing the Baikal archive for time scales beyond about 4-5 Myr. In this paper we use the distribution of 10Be to establish a new chronology for the longest core drilled in Lake Baikal so far. The 10Be-based chronology spans the last 8 Myr and provides better constraints on sedimentation rates and consequently on an east-west tectonic extension in the lake, which has been apparently coeval with other rifts in Asia that are related to the Tibetan plateau uplift. Our data also show higher 10Be flux in the sediment section older then 5 Myr compared with the younger period. This can be explained partly by warm and humid climatic conditions of the Miocene and partly by a high cosmic ray flux to the Earth resulting from possible low geomagnetic field intensity during that time.

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Journal of Paleolimnology