The alacrity with which researchers from many disciplines have embraced the term “Anthropocene” to connote a fundamental man-made disruption to the Earth System suggests it is an extremely useful conceptual shorthand amongst professionals, as well as capturing the attention and imagination of the wider public.
This was clearly the intention of Crutzen & Stoermer (2000) who coined it, yet as atmospheric chemist and biologist, it is unclear whether they did so in the expectation that it could, or should, be implemented as a formal stratigraphic term, or that they had a clear understanding at the time of the challenges of achieving a practical (stratigraphic) definition that would be useful to all disciplines.
A cursory survey of the research in the journals Anthropocene and Anthropocene Review reveals the very broad temporal range of anthropogenic phenomena investigated, a significant proportion of which predates the ICS Working Group’s current recommended onset in the early 1960’s.
Such concerns have prompted a degree of scepticism (e.g. Klein, 2015) about the considerable efforts being expended by the IUGS/ICS in this area.
Your thoughts and opinions please, particularly those from professional stratigraphers.
Crutzen, Paul J & Stoermer, Eugene F “The Anthropocene” Global Change Newsletter No.41 International Geosphere–Biosphere Programme (IGBP) (May 2000):17-18
Klein, George Devries. "The Anthropocene": What is its Geological Utility? Episodes 38.3 (2015): 218-218.