What can caves teach us about climate change?


Well-known member
A good start might be to look into the pioneering speleothem dating work done by Mel Gascoine and friends in the 1970s at a certain Dales show cave which you know particularly well. Mel was originally Lancaster based then moved on to McMaster in Canada, from where he continued his work for most of his career.

Mel actually left McMaster in 1982. You can read more about his career here:

Research on speleothems has progressed considerably since Mel's research, but this paper gives a good summary of the area he was interested in.


Active member
(Note if anyone is struggling to access academic journal articles* please so post on here - UK research is primarily funded by UK taxpayers -you- but the results are often only available at exorbitant costs through the research journal structures.) You never know when someone might be around and be able to direct you to an accessibly copy.

*can't help with books though


Well-known member
Interesting to think that as caves are formed, lots of CO2 is actually released!

One could actually turn it around and ask, what can climate change tell us about caves???