CARIMA : Natural versus anthropogenic controls of past monsoon variability in Central Asia recorded in marine archives


Many studies have tackled monsoon dynamics from a terrestrial perspective. In contrast, we propose to use marine proxy signals of past monsoon activity and to consider both, terrestrial and marine, environmental changes together with climate modeling to obtain a coherent picture of monsoon dynamics in the past in order to improve future climate projections. In this context, marine records offer the advantage of integrating terrestrial signals over entire catchment areas of large rivers. The natural variations in the monsoon system will be used to assess whether recent changes were indeed caused by human activity.

Study sites will be located in the Arabian Sea, the South China Sea, and the Bay of Bengal. The planned work will enhance the knowledge base of climate change in central Asia. It will provide insights into future monsoon behavior, a risk assessment of extreme events and an evaluation of the vulnerability of coasts in the monsoon region.

The CARIMA study aims at a better understanding of monsoon dynamics at timescales of societal relevance. We plan to employ high-resolution marine climate archives and novel proxies in combination with climate modeling in order to disentangle natural from human-induced variations in the Asian monsoon system. We will use proxies that reflect environmental conditions on land, specifically, changes in vegetation, hydrological and carbon cycles. Moreover, we intend to investigate how the occurrence of inter-annual climate modes and tropical cyclones are affected by climate change and how the interaction between climate and subsidence affects the vulnerability of coastal areas.


Involved working groups and institutes

Zentrum für Marine Umweltwissenschaften (MARUM)

Universität Hamburg, Institut für Biogeochemie und Meereschemie

Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, Fachbereich Geowissenschaften, AG Paläobiologie

Leibniz-Zentrum für Marine Tropenökologie (ZMT), Institut für Biogeochemie und Geologie

Max Planck.Institut für Meteorologie Hamburg, Abteilung: Ozean im Erdsystem

Bundesanstalt für Geowissenschaften und Rohstoffe (BGR)