University of California, Riverside

Earth Sciences

Department of Earth Sciences



Sandra Kirtland Turner


Sandra Kirtland Turner

Assistant Professor

Ph.D, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego
M.S., Scripps Institution of Oceanography, UC San Diego
B.S., Georgetown University

Specialty: Paleoclimate/Paleoceanography

Email: sandra.kirtlandturner@ucr.edu
Phone: (951) 827-3191
Office: Geology 1224A

Research Interests:

My research focuses on reconstructing and modeling the biogeochemistry and dynamics of the oceans during the early Cenozoic ‘greenhouse’ world. Pasted on this background of high temperatures were multiple episodes of extreme, rapid, greenhouse-gas driven global warming events called ‘hyperthermals’ that may provide analogs for future global climate change. By combining geochemical records from deep ocean sediment cores with Earth system modeling, I investigate the drivers and consequences of carbon cycling on a warm Earth on timescales ranging from the geologically brief hyperthermals (tens of thousands of years) to multi-million year trends.

Recent funded projects:

1. High-resolution foraminiferal carbon and oxygen stable isotope stratigraphy of Eocene sediments from the North Atlantic IODP Expedition 342. 2. GENIE Earth system modeling of Paleogene hyperthermals.

Kirtland Turner, S., 2014, Pliocene switch in orbital-scale carbon cycle/climate dynamics, doi:101002/2014/PA002651. 

Kirtland Turner, S., P.F. Sexton, C.D. Charles, and R.D. Norris, 2014, Persistence of carbon release events through the peak of early Eocene global warmth, Nature Geoscience, Vol. 7, pp. 748-751, doi:10.1038/ngeo2240. 

Kirtland Turner, S. and A. Ridgwell, 2013, Recovering the true size of an Eocene hyperthermal from the marine sedimentary record, Paleoceanography, Vol. 28(4), pp. 700-712, doi:10.1002/2013/PA002541. 

Norris, R.D., S. Kirtland Turner, P. Hull, and A. Ridgwell, 2013, Marine Ecosystem Responses to Cenozoic Global Change, Science, Vol. 341 (6145), pp. 492-498, doi:10.1126/science.1240543. 

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