In the face of climate model limitations, paleoclimatic studies of the Quaternary (2.5-0M Ma), which is characterized by the establishment of the present natural climatic system, are essential. They allow us to improve our understanding of the climate response to various forcings and of feedback mechanisms that take place. Geotop helps defining better the role of the different components of the climate system. These include sea ice cover, the role of convection zones (e.g., the Labrador Sea) in sea-atmosphere exchanges and in the carbon cycle, fluctuations and instabilities of ice sheets and variations of the hydrological cycle. Particular attention is given to comparing reconstructions of marine and continental paleoenvironments, and to studying high resolution records from recent time intervals (i.e., at the scale of the Holocene) to get information on annual to secular climate variations.