Comparative Analysis of Marine Diatom Species Richness and Diversity Across the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum at Different Latitudes

Authors: Anne Hentzen*, UMKC - Earth and Environmental Sciences Department, Caroline Davies, UMKC - Earth and Environmental Sciences Department
Topics: Environmental Science
Keywords: diatoms, Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum, Shannon-Wiener Diversity Index
Session Type: Virtual Guided Poster
Day: 4/8/2021
Start / End Time: 4:40 PM / 5:55 PM
Room: Virtual 53
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


This study examines the impacts of rapid warming experienced during the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM), approximately 56 Ma, on marine diatom communities and how these effects differ based on latitude. Understanding how diatom communities have responded to rapid warming events like the PETM may provide insight into how diatom communities will be impacted by changes occurring as a result of the current global climate crisis. Diatom assemblages may reflect potential changes to the carbon cycle and marine primary production resulting from these changes. There are differing views of whether these changes will lead to positive or negative feedbacks in the global carbon cycle. Potential changes are assessed using statistical analyses of diatom abundance data from existing marine sediment cores from Lomonosov Ridge, in the Central Arctic Ocean, Blake Nose, in the western North Atlantic Ocean, and Broken Ridge, in the Eastern Indian Ocean. Cluster analysis and Principal Component Analysis are performed to identify variance between datasets. Abundance data is not measured consistently at all locations, complicating comparisons between datasets. There is some evidence that diagenesis has limited diatom preservation during the PETM in some locations. Impacts on diatom communities are assessed using species richness and species diversity calculated using the Shannon-Wiener Diversity Index. Changes observed in diatom species are assessed for a more comprehensive picture of how rapid warming impacted diatom species richness and diversity across the globe.

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