10 Feb 2022
10 Feb 2022
Status: this preprint is currently under review for the journal ESSD.

LegacyClimate 1.0: A dataset of pollen-based climate reconstructions from 2594 Northern Hemisphere sites covering the late Quaternary

Ulrike Herzschuh1,2,3, Thomas Böhmer1, Chenzhi Li1,2, Manuel Chevalier4,5,6, Anne Dallmeyer5, Xianyong Cao1,7, Nancy H. Bigelow8, Larisa Nazarova1,9, Elena Y. Novenko10,11, Jungjae Park12,13, Odile Peyron14, Natalia A. Rudaya15,16, Frank Schlütz17,18, Lyudmila S. Shumilovskikh18, Pavel E. Tarasov19, Yongbo Wang20, Ruilin Wen21,22, Qinghai Xu23, and Zhuo Zheng24,25 Ulrike Herzschuh et al.
  • 1Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research, Polar Terrestrial Environmental Systems, Telegrafenberg A45, 14473 Potsdam, Germany
  • 2Institute of Environmental Science and Geography, University of Potsdam, Karl-Liebknecht-Str. 24-25, 14476 Potsdam, Germany
  • 3Institute of Biochemistry and Biology, University of Potsdam, Karl-Liebknecht-Str. 24-25, 14476 Potsdam, Germany
  • 4Institute of Geosciences, Sect. Meteorology, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn, Auf dem Hügel 20, 53121 Bonn, Germany
  • 5Max Planck Institute for Meteorology, Bundesstrasse 53, 20146 Hamburg, Germany
  • 6Institute of Earth Surface Dynamics IDYST, Faculté des Géosciences et l'Environnement, University of Lausanne, Batiment Géopolis, 1015 Lausanne, Switzerland
  • 7Alpine Paleoecology and Human Adaptation Group (ALPHA), State Key Laboratory of Tibetan Plateau Earth System, and Resources and Environment (TPESRE), Institute of Tibetan Plateau Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 100101 Beijing, China
  • 8Alaska Quaternary Center, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, Alaska 99775, USA
  • 9Kazan Federal University, Kremlyovskaya str. 18, 420008 Kazan, Russia
  • 10Lomonosov Moscow State University, Faculty of geography, Leniskie gory 1, 119991 Moscow, Russia
  • 11Department of Quaternary Paleogeography, Institute of Geography Russian Academy of Science, Staromonrtny lane, 29, 119017, Moscow, Russia
  • 12Department of Geography, Seoul National University, 1 Gwanak-ro, Gwanak-gu, Seoul, 08826, Republic of Korea
  • 13Institute for Korean Regional Studies, Seoul National University, 1 Gwanak-ro, Gwanak-gu, Seoul, 08826, Republic of Korea
  • 14Institut des Sciences de l’Evolution de Montpellier, Université de Montpellier, CNRS UMR 5554, Montpellier, France
  • 15PaleoData Lab, Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography, Siberian Branch, Russian Academy of Sciences, Pr. Akademika 36 Lavrentieva 17, 630090 Novosibirsk, Russia
  • 16Biological Institute, Tomsk State University, Pr. Lenina, 26, Tomsk, 634050, Russia
  • 17Lower Saxony Institute for Historical Coastal Research, D-26382 Wilhelmshaven, Germany
  • 18Department of Palynology and Climate Dynamics, Albrecht-von-Haller Institute for Plant Sciences, University of Göttingen, Untere Karspüle 2, 37073 Göttingen, Germany
  • 19Freie Universität Berlin, Institute of Geological Sciences, Palaeontology Section, Malteserstrasse 74-100, Building D, 12249 Berlin, Germany
  • 20College of Resource Environment and Tourism, Capital Normal University, 105 West 3rd Ring Rd N, 100048 Beijing, China
  • 21Key Laboratory of Cenozoic Geology and Environment, Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 19 Beitucheng West Road, Chaoyang District, 100029 Beijing, China
  • 22CAS Center for Excellence in Life and Paleoenvironment, 100044 Beijing, China
  • 23College of Geographical Sciences, Hebei Normal University, 050024 Shijiazhuang, China
  • 24Guangdong Key Lab of Geodynamics and Geohazards, School of Earth Sciences and Engineering, Sun Yat-sen University, 519082 Zhuhai, China
  • 25Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Zhuhai), 519082 Zhuhai, China

Abstract. Here we describe the LegacyClimate 1.0, a dataset of the reconstruction of mean July temperature (TJuly), mean annual temperature (Tann), and annual precipitation (Pann) from 2594 fossil pollen records from the Northern Hemisphere spanning the entire Holocene with some records reaching back to the Last Glacial. Two reconstruction methods, the Modern Analogue Technique (MAT) and Weighted-Averaging Partial-Least Squares regression (WA-PLS) reveal similar results regarding spatial and temporal patterns. To reduce the impact of precipitation on temperature reconstruction and vice versa, we also provide reconstructions using tailored modern pollen data limiting the range of the corresponding other climate variables. We assess the reliability of the reconstructions using information from the spatial distributions of the root-mean squared error of prediction and reconstruction significance tests. The dataset is beneficial for climate proxy synthesis studies and to evaluate the output of climate models and thus help to improve the models themselves. We provide our compilation of reconstructed TJuly, Tann, and Pann as open-access datasets at PANGAEA (; Herzschuh et al., 2021). R code for the reconstructions is provided at Zenodo (; Herzschuh et al., 2022), including harmonized open-access modern and fossil datasets used for the reconstructions, so that customized reconstructions can be easily established.

Ulrike Herzschuh et al.

Status: final response (author comments only)

Comment types: AC – author | RC – referee | CC – community | EC – editor | CEC – chief editor | : Report abuse
  • RC1: 'Comment on essd-2022-38', Anonymous Referee #1, 07 Mar 2022
  • RC2: 'Comment on essd-2022-38', Patrick Bartlein, 09 Mar 2022

Ulrike Herzschuh et al.

Data sets

Northern Hemisphere temperature and precipitation reconstruction from taxonomically harmonized pollen data set with revised chronologies using WA-PLS and MAT (LegacyClimate 1.0) Herzschuh, Ulrike; Böhmer, Thomas; Li, Chenzhi; Cao, Xianyong

Model code and software

LegacyClimate 1.0: A dataset of pollen-based climate reconstructions from 2594 Northern Hemisphere sites covering the late Quaternary Herzschuh, Ulrike; Böhmer, Thomas; Li, Chenzhi; Chevalier, Manuel; Dallmeyer, Anne; Cao, Xianyong; Bigelow, Nancy H.; Nazarova, Larisa; Novenko, Elena Y.; Park, Jungjae; Peyron, Odile; Rudaya, Natalia A.; Schlütz, Frank; Shumilovskikh, Lyudmila S.; Tarasov, Pavel E.; Wang, Yongbo; Wen, Ruilin; Xu, Qinghai; Zheng, Zhuo

Ulrike Herzschuh et al.


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Short summary
Climate reconstruction from proxy data can help evaluate climate models. Here we present pollen-based reconstructions of mean July temperature, mean annual temperature, and annual precipitation from 2594 pollen records from the Northern Hemisphere using three reconstruction methods (WA-PLS, WA-PLS_tailored, MAT). Since no global or hemispheric synthesis of quantitative precipitation changes are available for the Holocene so far, this dataset will be of great value to the geoscientific community.