A key to understanding the erosional history of Western Scandianvia
It is well known that sediment deposition in the North Sea and on the Norwegian Shelf varied significantly during the Cenozoic as a consequence of varying erosion rate mainly in Western Scandinavia, in Scotland and in the Alps. Recent results have demonstrated that a causal relationship exists between the global climate record (oxygen isotopes) and lithology variations on the Eocene-Oligocene transition in the eastern North Sea. Due to the strongly limited time resolution of low temperature thermochronology, the Cenozoic sedimentary record potentially provides the most detailed history of variations in erosion rates. Here we present the rationale behind the project, the data available and some preliminary results. The dense seismic and well coverage in the area makes it possible to estimate the rate of deposition of matrix mass. Assuming that sediment storage is not important, this provides a lower limit to erosion rate in source areas of the respective sedimentary bodies. The lower limit arises because some erosional products are transported out of the mapped area, and some erosion is caused by chemical dissolution. The development of the source areas will be modelled using surface process models. The matrix mass deposition history will be compared with the paleoclimate record (e.g. oxygen isotope curves) to see if the previously observed correlation in the eastern North Sea can be extended to other ages and locations.
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33th IGC International Geological Congress Oslo 2008