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Media Advisory


NSF PA/M 03-27 - May 12, 2003

Descent into "Deep-Time": NSF Workshop Highlights Earth's Ancient Paleoclimate
Rock record preserves results of large-scale changes in Earth's environment

Earth's "deep-time" rock record preserves the results of multiple large-scale changes in the planet's environment, according to geologists. Although studies of recent climate can be conducted with a resolution lacking in deep-time observations, they fail to capture the breadth of climate-system behavior, say these geologists. Deep-time paleoclimatology encompasses the study of Earth's history at resolutions ranging from the million-year to millennial. Deep-time studies showcase environmental disturbances unknown in recent periods, and feedbacks that occur on longer time scales and in response to different perturbations of the Earth system than those observable from recent time. Researchers have made great strides in their ability to reconstruct the climate of Earth's deep-time past, and resolution and dating techniques have improved considerably, according to earth scientists.

Significant advances in analytical techniques applicable to deep- time climate studies now enable researchers to achieve unprecedented resolution. Scientists working in this field will take part in a workshop, funded by NSF, to discuss the science of deep-time paleoclimatology and try to define the fundamental climate system problems that can be uniquely studied and understood in deep-time.



Geologists from several universities and institutions, scientists on "deep-time" climate studies


Workshop: "Descent into Deep-Time: Studies of Earth's Ancient Climate"


Friday, May 16, 2003, and Saturday, May 17, 2003


Marymount University-Ballston
1000 North Glebe Road, Room 204
Arlington, Virginia (Ballston Metro Stop)

For more information contact:

Media contact:

 Cheryl Dybas

 (703) 292-7734


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