As a result of substantial uplift and erosion during the Cenozoic, much of the Scottish landmass is devoid of Tertiary strata. In eastern Scotland, Tertiary deposits are limited to the Pliocene Buchan Gravels (Flett & Read 1921; Hall, A. M. 1985; McMillan & Merritt 1980) and an ice-rafted block of Miocene clay (Crampton & Carruthers 1914). The only substantial onshore deposits are the lavas and largely pyroclastic sediments of the Hebridean Igneous Province (see Chapter 14).
These volcanic rocks constitute part of the North Atlantic Tertiary Igneous Province, which developed in response to the rise of the North Atlantic mantle plume beneath the continental crust of East Greenland during the Palaeocene. Regional plume-related uplift and associated rift tectonics in the North Atlantic region (Fig. 13.1) led to the creation of a landmass that encompassed much of present-day Scotland and what is now the largely submerged Orkney-Shetland Platform. Uplift and erosion of this landmass, especially the Orkney-Shetland Platform, resulted in substantial sediment supply to the adjacent North Sea and Faeroe-Shetland basins, where the Tertiary successions attain maximum thicknesses of around 3 and 4km, respectively (Fig. 13.2).
The aim of this chapter is to give the reader a general account of the evolution of these sedimentary basins. Because of the long history of hydrocarbon exploration and production in these basins, a very substantial literature has developed, much of it of a highly technical nature. The following selection of references is intended to provide the reader with
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This 4th edition of The Geology of Scotland is edited by Dr Nigel Trewin of the Department of Geology and Petroleum Geology at the University of Aberdeen. The volume is greatly expanded from the previous edition with 34 authors contributing to 20 chapters.
A new format has been adopted to provide a different perspective on the geology of Scotland. A brief Introduction is followed by a chapter outlining some of the important historical aspects that in the 19th century placed Scottish geologists at the forefront of a new science.
Scotland is constructed from a number of terranes that finally combined in roughly their present positions prior to about 410 million years ago. Thus the geology of each terrane is described up to the time of amalgamation, providing chapters on the Southern Uplands, Midland Valley, Northern Highland, Grampian and Hebridean terranes. At the end of this section, a brief synthesis summarizes the events that resulted in the amalgamation of the various terranes into the present configuration.
Traditional practice is followed in the description of the Old Red Sandstone, Carboniferous, Permo-Trias, Jurassic, Cretaceous, Tertiary and Quaternary strata. A separate chapter covers Tertiary igneous rocks. An attempt is made to tell the story of the geological evolution of Scotland, rather than catalogue all areas and formations. Priority is given to the onshore geology, encouraging the reader to go into the field and visit some of the world-class geology on show in Scotland. The chapters are broadly-based, attempting to integrate the sedimentary and igneous histories, and summarize changes in palaeogeography and palaeoenvironments.
Economic aspects are covered with chapters on Metalliferous Minerals, Bulk Resources, Coal and Hydrocarbons. A new departure is a chapter on aspects of Environmental Geology and sustainability.
Additionally, this publication contains a colour section of 32 plates, illustrating aspects of Scottish Geology, as well as a coloured geological map of Scotland.