Eocene Thermal Maximum 2 (ETM2) and H2 were two short-lived global warming events that occurred ∼2 m.y. after the Paleocene–Eocene thermal maximum (PETM, ca. 56 Ma). We have generated benthic foraminiferal stable carbon and oxygen isotope records of four sites along a depth transect on Walvis Ridge (∼3.5–1.5 km paleodepth, southeast Atlantic Ocean) and one site on Maud Rise (Weddell Sea) to constrain the pattern and magnitude of their carbon isotope excursions (CIEs) and deep-sea warming. At all sites, ETM2 is characterized by ∼3 °C warming and a –1.4‰ CIE. The H2 event that occurred ∼100 k.y. later is associated with ∼2 °C warming and a –0.8‰ CIE. The magnitudes of the δ13C and δ18O excursions of both events are significantly smaller than those during the PETM, but their coherent relation indicates that the δ13C change of the exogenic carbon pool was similarly related to warming during these events, despite the much more gradual and transitioned onset of ETM2 and H2.
- Received 14 October 2009.
- Revision received 4 January 2010.
- Accepted 2 February 2010.
- © 2010 Geological Society of America