Paleoclimate data are derived from Earth's natural climate archives, including tree rings, ice cores, corals, speleothems, and ocean sediments. Such records are used to broaden the sampling of climate variability beyond what is possible from the instrumental record. Paleoclimate data are used to place recent changes into a long-term context, to understand the causes and impacts of climate change, and to explore the behavior of the climate system under vastly different boundary conditions than the present day.
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Years of record
Accumulated sediments at the bottom of lakes are invaluable archives of past climate and environmental change. These sediments contain a variety of physical,…