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The Taconic Foreland Basin formed during the collision between the North American craton and the Ammonoosuc Arc, approaching from the east. Oxygen-depleted conditions in the basin were probably caused by density stratification in the water column due to a locally humid climate, in combination with stagnant conditions in the world ocean. A long-term cyclicity of alternating 500,000 to 1,000,000 year long “anaerobic phases” and “dysaerobic phases” appears to be the result of a combination of variations in the sedimentation rate, climatic conditions, and changes in the world ocean.

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