Fahu Chen

Fahu Chen
Chinese Academy of Sciences | CAS · Institute of Tibetan Plateau Research

Ph.D.

About

632
Publications
282,228
Reads
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23,811
Citations
Introduction
Quaternary environmental changes (especial during Holocene), climate changes, environmental archeology, loess record, desert evolution and palaeoclimatology with special focus on paleoenvironmental reconstruction, human-environment interactions in Arid Central Asia and the Tibetan Plateau.
Additional affiliations
October 2001 - June 2002
University of London
Position
  • Visiting Professor in 2001-2002
November 1991 - October 1997
University of Liverpool
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Description
  • Four periods from 1991 to 1997 works in Department of Geography, Department of Geology, times in U. of Liverpool.
June 1990 - present
Lanzhou University
Position
  • Lecture in 1990, Associate Professor in 1992, Professor in 1994, dean of Scool of Earth and Environment Sciecnes in 199-2005

Publications

Publications (632)
Article
Full-text available
The ubiquitous occurrence of glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (GDGTs) in soils and their ability to record temperature and environmental changes offer the prospect of independently reconstructing continental paleotemperature and paleoenvironment from the loess-paleosol sequences (LPS) from the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP). In this study we pres...
Article
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The Holocene temperature discrepancy between paleoclimate reconstructions and climate model simulations—known as the Holocene temperature conundrum—calls for new high‐quality Holocene temperature records at high elevations. Here, we present a quantitative Holocene mean annual air temperature record based on a site‐specific branched glycerol dialkyl...
Article
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Understanding the vegetation response to climate change and human activities during the Holocene may help predict the future trajectory of vegetation change. Moreover, in the semi-arid region of northern China, it may also provide a scientific basis for addressing ecological problems and achieving sustainable development goals. Based on 5 AMS ¹⁴C d...
Article
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Lithic raw material analysis is the key to understanding prehistoric foragers’ resource exploitation strategies, mobility patterns, cultural interactions and exchange networks. Previous geochemical study of obsidian artifacts from Paleolithic and Epipaleolithic sites on the Tibetan Plateau revealed possible human interactions in the Chang Tang and...
Article
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The Late Quaternary hydroclimatic evolution of lake systems in Mongolia remains unclear. Here we present a record of lake level variations at Orog Nuur in the Valley of Gobi Lakes in southern Mongolia, since the last interglaciation, based on paleo-shoreline dating using quartz optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) and K-feldspar post-infrared in...
Article
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The emergence of complex societies represents one of the major developments of human prehistory. Diverse agricultural strategies were implemented to produce the increased grain surplus necessary to allow the development of complex societies across the world. Little is known, however, about the millet–pig system that developed in Neolithic North Chi...
Article
The innovations of agricultural production and their extensive dispersal promoted the transformation of human livelihoods and profoundly influenced the evolution of human-land relationships in late prehistoric Eurasia. The Steppe and Silk Roads (SSRs) played important roles in the transcontinental exchange and dispersal of cereal crops and livestoc...
Article
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Semi-arid areas of northern China are under increasing pressures from anthropogenic activities and climate change. Although wetland areas in these drylands have experienced dramatic, unidirectional shifts in their ecological status in recent centuries, fundamental driving forces are poorly quantified. Here, we examine changes in sedimentary proxies...
Article
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Rapid lake expansions along with intensive glacier loss in the Tibetan Plateau (TP) in recent decades indicate an enhanced hydrological circulation. Well-preserved paleo-shorelines up to ∼200 m above modern levels in the TP attest to much greater lake expansions in the past and serve as analogues for future lake evolution under climate changes. Meg...
Article
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There are debates regarding whether a wet and warm climate or a dry and cold climate dominated Holocene fire activity in northern China on the millennial timescale, and when human activities overtook climate change as the dominant control on fire occurrence in the region. Here we present a high-resolution fire history for the past ∼15,500 years fro...
Article
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Paleoclimate reconstructions show that the arid Central Asia (ACA) is characterized by a wetting trend from the mid-Holocene (MH) to the Preindustrial period (PI), which has been acknowledged to be a result of increased mean precipitation. However, a systemic understanding of its governing dynamics remains elusive. Based on model outputs from 13 cl...
Article
A progressive warming or a long-term cooling trend during the Holocene remain controversial both at a regional and global scale. One possible reason for this discrepancy could be seasonality and uncertainties in the biases of various temperature proxies. Here, we present the distributions of archaeal isoprenoid glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers...
Article
Understanding the history and regional singularities of human impact on vegetation is key to developing strategies for sustainable ecosystem management. In this study, fossil and modern pollen datasets from China are employed to investigate temporal changes in pollen composition, analogue quality, and pollen diversity during the Holocene. Anthropog...
Article
Knowledge of the past interactions between climate and human land use is essential for understanding the possible future relationships between global change and human societies. In this study, we used pollen and other multi-proxy analyses of the sediments from Xingyun Lake in central Yunnan Plateau to reconstruct the history of land use and ecosyst...
Article
Peatland carbon accumulation generally increased during past intervals of natural warming. With recent anthropogenically-dominated warming being unprecedented over the past ∼2000 years, however, it is unclear how peatland carbon dynamics may operate compared to those under historical natural warmings. Here we examine the impacts of the recent warmi...
Article
Branched glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (brGDGTs) have shown promise for quantitative reconstructions of temperature and soil pH. However, several confounding factors (e.g., precipitation) have been suggested to influence the brGDGT distributions in various soils, and it is difficult to tease apart the brGDGTs’ dependencies on individual env...
Article
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Understanding changes in water availability is critical for Central Asia; however, long streamflow reconstructions extending beyond the period of instrumental gauge measurements are largely missing. Here, we present a 785-year-long streamflow reconstruction from spruce tree rings from the Tien Shan Mountains. Although an absolute causal relationshi...
Article
A key scientific issue in the study of the Anthropocene is the determination of the corresponding stratigraphic marker in geological archives. The arid and semi-arid regions of Asia are the second largest dust source on Earth, and their release, transport and deposition of dust affect global climate change, as well as marine and terrestrial biogeoc...
Article
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古气候重建记录显示, 中亚干旱区(arid central Asia; ACA)自中全新世(mid-Holocene; MH)以来湿度增加, 虽被认为与降水增多有密切联系, 但其动力机理尚没有系统的解释. 本文通过利用第四次古气候模式对比计划(Paleoclimate Model Intercomparison Project phase 4; PMIP4)中13个气候模式的结果和ACA地区最新的记录集成结果, 探讨工业革命前时期(pre-industrial; PI)ACA降水相对MH增多的动力机理. 结果显示: PMIP4模式基本都可重现记录中ACA湿度增多的趋势. 通过多模式集成分析发现, ACA年均降水增多与冬季(12月、1月和2月)、春季(3月、4月和5月)的水汽来源和水汽输送强度...
Article
The nature of the interaction between prehistoric humans and their environment, especially the vegetation, has long been of interest. The Qinghai Lake Basin in North China is well-suited to exploring the interactions between prehistoric humans and vegetation in the Tibetan Plateau, because of the comparatively dense distribution of archaeological s...
Article
China announced its national goal to reach the peak of carbon emission by 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2060, during the General Assembly of the United Nations in September 2020. In this context, the potential of the carbon sink in China’s terrestrial ecosystems to mitigate anthropogenic carbon emissions has attracted unprecedented attentio...
Article
Surface sediments such as aeolian sand, loess/sandy loess, and fluvial/alluvial clastics are widespread in the Yarlung Tsangpo (YT) catchment and across the Tibetan Plateau (TP). However, it is debated whether the source of the aeolian sediments is local or remote, involving transport across large regions, and whether the surface sediments, especia...
Article
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The Tibetan Plateau (TP) is one of the most sensitive areas to global climate changes. Quantitative paleotemperature reconstructions on the TP since the Last Deglaciation provide a prominent opportunity not only for assessing the position, but also for better understanding the mechanism of recent warming. In this study, we first present a well-date...
Book
As a consequence of anthropogenic perturbations the global ocean is warming, acidifying, losing oxygen and sea ice, and sea level is rising. While drastic reduction of the emission of greenhouse gases is urgently needed, which includes ocean energy substitution for fossil energy, we show that the ocean offers numerous opportunities to reduce the ca...
Article
Precipitation has been suggested as a crucial influencing factor in the primary productivity in arid and semi-arid regions, yet how moisture fluctuation in an arid mountain-basin system of the north Qinghai–Tibetan Plateau has affected human activities is poorly understood. Here, we reconstruct the variations of grazing intensity in high elevations...
Article
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Quantifying seasonal bias in proxy reconstructions (for example, sea surface temperature (SST)) has been a long-standing challenge, hampering our understanding of past climate evolution (for example, the Holocene temperature conundrum)1,2. Recently, Bova et al.3 proposed. a seasonal to mean annual transformation (SAT) method that seems to effective...
Article
The late Holocene vegetation of the Loess Plateau in China was influenced by both climate change and human activities, however, details of how humans modified the vegetation are unclear, especially in the mountain region of northern China. In this study we used pollen and charcoal analysis of a radiocarbon-dated sediment core from Mayinghai Lake, i...
Article
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As the cradle of Chinese civilization the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) and its climatic and environmental history have attracted much research attention; however, the spatial characteristics of Holocene climatic conditions across the CLP remains unclear. We investigated five loess sections from the Ganjia Basin in the western CLP, and used paleoclim...
Article
The southern arid central Asia (SACA, 35.25°–45°N, 46.25°–80°E) is influenced by Mediterranean type of climate with wet cool season. This study analyzed the variations of winter precipitation and their mechanisms during 1979–2017. The results suggest the variations of winter precipitation in SACA are influenced by two water vapor pathways, which ar...
Article
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The information revolution has been one of the driving forces to the innovation in geography. However, environmental remote sensing, geographic information science and technology, and geocomputing, which once resided within the family of geography, are gradually moving close to information science but are alienated from geography. Therefore, it is...
Article
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Land-surface temperature changes lead to thermal contrasts between the land and the sea and have significant water cycle impacts particularly within global monsoon regions. Whilst such influence may dominate in the East Asian summer monsoon region, the long-term warm-season temperature dynamics in monsoonal China have not been effectively explored....
Article
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Changes in the magnitude of millennial-scale climate variability (MCV) during the Late Pleistocene occur as a function of changing background climate state over tens of thousands of years, an indirect consequence of slowly varying incoming solar radiation associated with changes in Earth’s orbit. However, whether astronomical forcing can stimulate...
Article
One of the Holocene abrupt events around 4200 years ago, lasting for ∼200 years, is thought to have caused cultural disruptions, yet terrestrial climatic status right after the cold/dry event remains poorly defined and is often presumed that a generally cool condition prevailed during the Bronze Age (∼4000-2200 years ago). Here we report an alkenon...
Article
High lake levels were developed in wide areas of western China during the late Quaternary as revealed by an increasing number of studies on dating shorelines; however, whether the high lake level of these lakes occurred simultaneously and what drove them are unresolved problems. In this study, in the Jilantai sub-depression within the Jilantai–Heta...
Article
The scarcity of research in NE China on lake ecosystem responses to large-scale climate oscillations since the last deglaciation limits our abilities for informing conservation practices and policies in the context of recent global warming. Here, a high-resolution, sedimentary diatom record covering the past ∼17,500 years was retrieved from Lake Mo...
Article
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Given the reported increasing trends in high Asian streamflow and rapidly increasing water demand in the Indian subcontinent, it is necessary to understand the long‐term changes and mechanisms of snow- and glacier-melt-driven streamflow in this area. Thus, we have developed a June–July streamflow reconstruction for the upper Indus River watershed l...
Article
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The East Asian summer monsoon (EASM) northern boundary is a critical indicator of EASM variations. Movement of the boundary is modulated by both the EASM and the mid-latitude westerlies. Here, we use the Earth system model EC-Earth to quantify the contribution of orbital forcing and vegetation feedbacks in modulating the movement of EASM northern b...
Data
SI of ‘Biofuels Reserve Controlled Wildfire Regimes Since the Last Deglaciation: A Record From Gonghai Lake, North China‘ , and Black carbon of Gonghai lake for past ~ 14800yr, link: https://doi.org/10.6084/m9.figshare.14439425 https://www.ncei.noaa.gov/access/paleo-search/study/35233
Article
Precipitation fluctuation has been suggested as a crucial influencing factor in the evolution of ancient civilizations across the world. Nuomuhong culture (~3400–2450 BP) and Tuyuhun (313–663 CE) were unique ancient civilizations that developed in the eastern Qaidam Basin of the north Tibetan Plateau. However, how precipitation variation in the mou...
Article
The Paleolithic archaeological record of the Tibetan Plateau is crucial for understanding human ecological and genetic adaptation to life in high altitudes. Recent work on the Tibetan Plateau has documented hominin occupations by Denisovans at Baishiya Karst Cave (BKC) from at least ca. 160, and again around 100 and 60 thousand years ago (ka), foll...
Article
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Wildfire activity is an important activity in evolution of vegetation and carbon cycling. Whether wet weather will suppress wildfire or promote them by increasing fuel reserves during the Holocene is not clear. We obtained a record of black carbon from a sediment core spanning the last 14.8 kyr from Gonghai Lake, in North China. There is a close re...
Article
Asian dust storms have long been a major environmental concern in China, affecting the lives of about one billion people. However, it is unclear whether the mechanisms responsible for Asian dust storms during the Holocene varied on different timescales, and thus it is unclear whether there was a shift from a natural forcing to an anthropogenic forc...
Article
Although the pattern of Holocene temperature variations in central Asia is complex, it is clear that temperature played a fundamental role in influencing humidity conditions and regional human activity. We reconstructed temperature changes using Pediastrum species data, verified by clumped isotopes (Δ47), in the carbonates of sediment cores recover...
Article
The dunefields upwind of the Chinese Loess Plateau (CLP) are widely regarded as the major source of the sediments of the CLP. To test this inference, we conducted a source tracing study using UePb age spectra of detrital zircons from the central Badain Jaran Desert (BJD). The results reveal that since 1.1 Ma the sediments in the central BJD have or...
Preprint
The mechanisms of recent Elevation-Dependent Warming (EDW) remain debated because nearly all data sources are limited to past decades and subject to anthropogenic effects. Here, we study how temperature changed along the elevation gradient since the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) and aim to shed lights on the mechanisms of EDW and implications for the...
Article
Full-text available
Knowledge of the paleoclimatic record of the northeastern Tibetan Plateau (NETP) can potentially improve our understanding of the evolution of the Asian summer monsoon (ASM). However, the history of climate change and inferred spatial extent of the ASM on the NETP since the last deglaciation remain unclear. Here, we use several environmental proxie...
Article
The nature of Holocene temperature changes is controversial because of the apparent discrepancy between global temperature reconstructions and climate modelling results. Here we present evidence indicating that the discrepancy can be attributed to the combination of seasonal biases in the proxy temperature records and insufficient understanding of...
Article
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The ancient Silk Road played a crucial role in cultural exchange and commercial trade between western and eastern Eurasia during the historical period. However, the exchanges were interrupted in the early 16th century CE, during the Ming dynasty. Various causes for the decline of the ancient Silk Road have been suggested. Unlike social factors, nat...
Article
The climate of arid central Asia (ACA) is extremely dry and early human settlement in the region were dependent upon an unstable water supply. Thus, knowledge of the hydrological fluctuation history is essential for understanding the relationship between humans and the environment in the region. Here we present a record of Holocene lake hydrodynami...
Article
Full-text available
Plain Language Summary Although pastoralism has long been the dominant subsistence strategy in the Eurasian steppe region, previous studies did not discuss when and why the pastoralism started in northern China, and the mechanisms involved due to limited data. With new and well‐dated fossil data, it is possible to understand better the population d...
Article
Knowledge of the alpine glacier meltwater variations is fundamental prerequisite for understanding glacier dynamics and assessing the availability of freshwater resources. Glaciers on the Tibetan Plateau (TP) are sources of water for most major Asian rivers, but their melting history remains unclear, preventing in-depth understanding of their mecha...
Article
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The northeastern Qinghai‐Tibet Plateau is strongly influenced by the East Asian summer monsoon (EASM), the Indian summer monsoon (ISM) and the westerlies. However, how these various circulation systems interacted in the region during the Holocene, and the nature of the associated environmental impacts, are unclear and even controversial. Here we pr...
Article
Arid Central Asia (ACA) is far from oceanic moisture sources and has a prevailing arid climate; thus the environment of the region is hydroclimatically sensitive. The eastern part of ACA is dominated by the basin-mountain system. A previous study proposed that the humid mountains and the arid basins were characterized by an opposite pattern of clim...