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Camilo Ponton and Liviu Giosan examine a sediment core from India

Climate and Culture

MIT/WHOI Joint Program student Camilo Ponton and WHOI geologist Liviu Giosan examine a sediment core they used to reconstruct the history of India’s monsoon over the past 10,000 years. Collected from near the mouth of the Godavari River by the National Gas Hydrate Program of India, the core contained remnants of the plants that were abundant on land during the accumulation of the sediment. Ponton, Giosan, and colleagues found that an extended arid period around 4,000 years ago, followed by highly variable monsoons after 1,700 years ago, probably contributed to the development of sedentary agriculture in India. (Photo by Tom Kleindinst, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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