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Featured article from karst/cave journal

zrc-sazu, Ljubljana
Acta carsologica, 2011, Vol 40, Issue 2, p. 233-238
LETTER: Comments on processes contributing to the isotope composition of 13C and 18O in calcite deposited to speleothems
Abstract:

Isotope compositions of carbon and oxygen in calcite de­posited to stalagmites are regarded as important proxies for paleo-climate. The number of papers reporting such proxies rises rapidly. Additionally cave monitoring is be­ing performed to observe chemical properties of the wa­ter dripping to speleothems, the partial pressure of CO2 in the soil above the cave and in the cave atmosphere, and other parameters outside the cave to relate recent climate conditions to recently deposited calcite.

There are, however, physical and chemical processes independent of climatic conditions, which also contrib­ute to the isotope composition and which can add noise to the climate signal. In this letter I resume these from the current literature to open a more easy access to this problem than available from the current original publi­cations.