Rapid Climate Change (RAPID) was a £20 million, six-year (2001-2007) programme for the Natural Environment Research Council. The programme aimed to improve the ability to quantify the probability and magnitude of future rapid change in climate, with a main (but not exclusive) focus on the role of the Atlantic Ocean's Thermohaline Circulation.
The aims of the proposal were to compare high-resolution isotope records from terrestrial archives in NW Europe with model simulations of isotopes in precipitation in order to investigate the role of different forcing factors in rapid climate change during the late glacial and Holocene and to undertake model validation. The proposal constitutes a UK contribution to the PAGES ISOMAP initiative. A water isotope model was developed for the UK Hadley centre model HadCM3. Comparisons have been made between simulations of the isotopic composition of precipitation during periods of rapid climatic change and reconstructions from well-dated and well-calibrated palaeo-archives (lake sediments, peat and speleothem) generated in this study and obtained from the literature, in order to investigate the causes and nature of abrupt climatic events.