Speleothem formation in Northeastern Iberian Peninsula under the influence of different climatic conditions over last glacial cycles

A. Moreno, Anchel Belmonte, Miguel Bartolomé, Carlos Sancho, Belén Oliva, Heather Stoll, L. R. Edwards, Hai Cheng, John Hellstrom


Speleothem growing is closely linked to warm climates with a positive hydrological balance. Mild temperatures and hydrological availability are conditions that tend to stimulate soil CO2 production due to denser vegetation cover and higher microbial activity. In such situations, waters enriched with dissolved carbonate are common and can infiltrate in the karstic system. This study compiles 158 dates from 34 speleothems collected in nine caves in the Northeastern Iberia to distinguish the time intervals with speleothem formation. A clear connection of speleothem growth and interglacial periods is established but precesssional influence is also observed, being periods of maxima insolation those with ideal conditions to produce karstic formations such as speleothems. The Holocene is without doubt the best represented period in the available records. However, last centuries were not characterized by an important development of speleothems in the studied caves.


speleothems, interglacial, Holocene, karstic systems

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18172/cig.1998

© Universidad de La Rioja, 2013

ISSN 0211-6820

EISSN 1697-9540