Sequence Stratigraphy and Coal Petrology Applied to the Early Permian Coal-bearing Rio Bonito Formation, Paraná Basin, Brazil
Michael Holz, Wolfgang Kalkreuth, 2004. "Sequence Stratigraphy and Coal Petrology Applied to the Early Permian Coal-bearing Rio Bonito Formation, Paraná Basin, Brazil", Sequence Stratigraphy, Paleoclimate, and Tectonics of Coal-Bearing Strata, Jack C. Pashin, Robert A. Gastaldo
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The coal-bearing Early Permian succession of the Paraná Basin in southernmost Brazil is linked to a third-order depositional sequence, where the most important coals occur in the initial transgressive systems tract. In the Candiota area, the main coal zone consists of 17 seams, which were analyzed for petrographic properties (macerals, gelification index, tissue-preservation index, vitrinite reflectance). These results are compared to the high-resolution sequence-stratigraphic framework to enhance our understanding of the stratigraphic controls on coal formation, coal distribution, and coal quality, providing guidelines for optimal exploitation.
The results show that local changes in accommodation trends and high sediment influx practically preclude coal formation in the lowstand and highstand systems tracts, whereas major coal development occurred in the transgressive systems tract. Seam distribution and thickness are controlled directly by flooding events, as depicted by the parasequences mapped in the study area. The main variations in thickness and extent occur at, or close to, the parasequence bounding surfaces. The most important coals, which are as much as 2.50 m in thickness, occur in the initial transgressive systems tract.
Coal petrographic parameters suggest an overall drying-upward trend in the coal seams developed in the upper part of third-order sequence 2, with significant differences of coal properties relative to their stratigraphic position between and within the parasequences. Detailed petrographic analysis of seam subsections indicates a transgressive nature for the thick coal seams occurring in parasequence 4 (CCI and CCS seams). These are characterized by decreased vitrinite reflectance at the base and top of the coal seams. The high inertinite content of the overlying BL seam at the top of PS 4 suggests accumulation of the precursor peat in a regressive phase of the parasequence.
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The origin of coal-bearing strata has been debated vigorously for more than a century, and with the emergence of coalbed methane as a major energy resource and the possibility of sequestering greenhouse gas in coal, this debate has never been more relevant. This volume contains 10 chapters on coal-bearing strata of Carboniferous through Tertiary age and is based on a special session that was held at an AAPG Annual Meeting in New Orleans. The contributors to this volume have employed a multitude of approaches ranging from basin analysis to plant taphonomy to support a variety of views on the sequence stratigraphy, paleoclimate, and tectonics of coal-bearing strata.