Our paper “Climate changes in interior semi-arid Spain from the last interglacial to the late Holocene” is now online in Climate of the Past Discussions (https://www.clim-past-discuss.net/cp-2019-16/).
In this paper, we reconstruct the paleoclimate in semi-arid Spain since before the last interglacial, using the pollen record in El Cañizar de Villarquemado. Modern pollen-climate relationships are used to reconstructed changes in seasonal temperatures and moisture conditions, accounting for CO2 effects on plants. The reconstruction shows coherent climate changes on glacial-interglacial and orbital timescales. Although we focus on long-term changes in climate here, this record also shows millennial-scale changes corresponding to Dansgaard-Oeschger cycles. We found that both summer insolation and abrupt climate changes contribute to temperature seasonality. The low glacial CO2 means moisture changes are less extreme than suggested by the vegetation shifts and driven by evapotranspiration rather than rainfall changes. These results provide a detailed picture of the response of the western Mediterranean climate to external forcing for a long time and will be useful for the whole Mediterranean and Europe area.