Dendrochronological Field Invesitigations at the Northern North American Treeline

Regions: Sahtu Settlement Area

Tags: biology, climate change, paleoclimatology, paleontology, dendrochronology

Principal Investigator: D'Arrigo, Rosanne (1)
Licence Number: 13595
Organization: Columbia University
Licensed Year(s): 2004
Issued: Apr 19, 2004
Project Team: Brendan Bu

Objective(s): The goal of the project is to develop tree-ring records from old growth trees at northern treeline locations in Canada and Alaska for paleoclimatic studies. Over the past two to three decades, scientists from the Lamont-Doherty Observatory have conducted field work from such locations, including the Coppermine River (first sampled in 1978), Mackenzie Mountains (first sampled in 1984), and the Thelon River area (first sampled in 1984). As a result of these efforts, the Observatory has compiled a database of tree-ring data for the circumpolar Arctic which is used to reconstruct Arctic and Northern Hemisphere temperatures over the past several centuries to millennium. The current project aims to collect both living and subfossil wood material, primarily of white spruce, from the Coppermine and Mackenzie Mountain areas in the summer of 2004 in order to update and extend the previous collections. The resulting extended records will allow the inference of information about the nature of past climate during the "Medieval Warm Period" and the "Little Ice Age", relative to the past century of large-scale warming and anthropogenic increase in trace gases.