<p>Paleoenvironmental reconstruction (also known as paleoclimate reconstruction) refers to the results and the investigations undertaken to determine what the climate and vegetation were like at a particular time and place in the past. Climate, including vegetation, temperature, and relative humidity, has varied considerably during the time since the earliest human habitation of planet earth, from both natural and cultural (human-made) causes.</p><p>The Little Ice Age was the last painful climate change, suffered by the planet during the Middle Ages. Here are four stories about how we coped.</p>Marine Isotope Stages are what geologists use to identify global shifts in climate. This page lists the cooling and warming periods identified for the past one million years, the dates for those periods, and some of the events that happened during those tumultuous periods.According to historical and archaeological evidence, there was a persistent dust veil covering much of Europe and Asia Minor for up to a year and a half. Here&#39;s the evidence. The dust plume in the photo is from the Icelandic Eyjafjallajökull volcano in 2010.A massive eruption of the Toba Volcano in Sumatra about 74,000 years ago dumped ash on the ground and into the air from the south China Sea to the Arabian Sea. Interestingly, the evidence for planet wide climate change as a result of that eruption is mixed. The image illustrates the thick deposit from Toba&#39;s eruption at the southern Indian Paleolithic site of Jwalapuram.Although the jury is still about exactly how the large-bodied mammals disappeared from our planet, one of the major culprits had to have been climate change.Contributing writer Thomas F. King describes the work of Bruce Masse, who used geomythology to investigate the possible comet or asteroid strike that led to disaster legends. This image is, of course, on an impact crater on our moon.<p>The Ebro Frontier may or may not have been a real block to the population of the Iberian peninsula by humans, but the climate changes associated with the Middle Paleolithic period may well have affected the ability of our <a href="https://www.thoughtco.com/neanderthals-study-guide-171212" data-component="link" data-source="inlineLink" data-type="internalLink" data-ordinal="1">Neanderthal</a> kin to live there.</p>The giant ground sloth is just about the last survivor of the large-bodied mammal extinctions. Its story is one of survival through climate change, only to be overwhelmed by human predation.One of the bleaker stories of climate change is that of the Vikings on Greenland, who struggled fairly successfully for 300 years on the cold rock, but apparently succumbed to a 7 degree C temperature downturn.However, the Khmer Empire collapsed, after 500 years of strngth and control over their water requirements. Climate change, assisted by political and social upheaval, had a role in its failure.<p>The <a href="https://www.thoughtco.com/angkor-civilization-ancient-khmer-empire-169557" data-component="link" data-source="inlineLink" data-type="internalLink" data-ordinal="1">Khmer Empire</a> [AD800-1400] were flatout wizards at water control, capable of changing the microenvironments of their communities and capitals.</p>The Last Glacial Maximum occurred something like 30,000 years ago, when the glaciers covered pretty much the northern third of our planet.<p>An extreme dry period occurred in the American plains and southwest between about 3,000 and 7,500 years ago, and our <a href="https://www.thoughtco.com/archaic-period-american-hunter-gatherers-169976" data-component="link" data-source="inlineLink" data-type="internalLink" data-ordinal="1">American Archaic</a> hunter-gatherer ancestors survived by hunkering down and excavating wells.</p><p>Qijurittuq is a <a href="https://www.thoughtco.com/thule-tradition-archaeology-169863" data-component="link" data-source="inlineLink" data-type="internalLink" data-ordinal="1">Thule culture</a> site, located on Hudson Bay in Canada. The residents successfully lived through the so-called &#34;Little Ice Age&#34;, by building semi-subterranean housing and snow houses.</p>Landnam is the agricultural technique that the Vikings brought with them to Greenland and Iceland, and using its techniques despite climate change is believed by some scholars to have resulted in the end of the colony on Greenland.There are multiple and intersecting reasons which scholars have come up with to explain the crash of the society on the tiny island of Rapanui: but it seems clear that some environmental alterations of the neighborhood.The Tiwanaku (sometimes spelled Tiahuanaco) were the dominant culture in much of South America for four hundred years, long before the Inca. They were agricultural engineers, building terraces and raised fields to adapt to changing conditions. But, the theory goes, the climate changes experienced were too much for them.In a 2008 article in <em>Current Anthropology</em>, anthropologist Susan Crate considers what anthropologists can do to work on behalf of our indigenous research partners who don&#39;t have the political clout to act on climate change.This classic book from Brian Fagan describes the effects of climate change on many different human cultures, spanning the entire range of our residence of this planet.