A new biostratigraphic scheme for the Paleocene onshore West Greenland and its implications for the timing of the pre-volcanic evolution
H. Nøhr-Hansen, E. Sheldon, G. Dam, 2002. "A new biostratigraphic scheme for the Paleocene onshore West Greenland and its implications for the timing of the pre-volcanic evolution", The North Atlantic Igneous Province: Stratigraphy, Tectonic, Volcanic and Magmatic Processes, D. W. Jolley, B. R. Bell
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Based upon dinoflagellate cyst and nannofossil data, a detailed zonation of the Lower Paleocene succession in the Nuussuaq Basin, onshore West Greenland has been established. The succession is divided into the five dinoflagellate cyst zones: Trithyrodinium evittii, Cerodinium pannuceum, Senegalinium iterlaaense, Palaeocystodinium bulliforme and Alisocysta margarita. The dinoflagellate cyst zones are correlated with nannoplankton zones. The stratigraphically most important nannofossils recorded include Chiasmolithus cf. bidens, Neochiastozygus modestus, N. perfectus, N. saepes, Prinsius martinii and Zeugrhabdotus sigmoides. A new zonal scheme has been erected and resolves previous problems relating biostratigraphic and 40Ar/39Ar data in the region.
The Upper Maastrichtian-Lower Paleocene succession records faulting and valley/submarine canyon incision resulting from pre-volcanic rifting and regional uplift of the basin. Two Early Paleocene tectonic phases have been recognized during NP1–NP3. These uplift phases were followed by rapid subsidence during NP4. Initiation of volcanism onshore West Greenland is broadly concurrent with the Alisocysta margarita Zone indicating that volcanism began during late NP4, in accordance with recent palaeomagnetic results and 40Ar/39Ar dating of the volcanics. On the basis of the first occurrence datum of the dinoflagellate cyst species Cerodinium kangiliense and Alisocysta margarita, it is possible to correlate the lowermost volcanic Anaanaa Member hyaloclastites from the southwestern part of Nuussuaq with sediments of the Eqalulik Formation from the northern coast of Nuussuaq.
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The North Atlantic Igneous Province has been the subject of extensive scientific investigation over the past thirty years, with a wide field of knowledge being accumulated. Recently, recognition of the potential role of Large Igneous Provinces in affecting ocean and atmosphere systems and biotic evolutionary pathways has lead to increased interest in this province. This has been further stimulated by the expansion in the search for oil and gas in Mesozoic and Tertiary sediments along the NE Atlantic Margin. An improved understanding of the interaction between igneous and sedimentary processes is vital for the identification of potential hydrocarbon resources.
The regions covered include continental margin Norway, east and west Greenland, the Faroe-Shetland Basin and the Faroe Islands themselves. The papers in this book contain new data and interpretations of North Atlantic Igneous Province magmatic processes, rift evolution, tectonics, stratigraphy (chemostratigraphy, biostratigraphy, seismic and isotope stratigraphy) and sediment dispersal. Many of the papers adopt a multidisciplinary approach to tha analysis and interpretation of complex volcanic and sedimentary sequences. These new data, and the reviews and compilations of existing data provide the reader with access to current research directions in North Atlantic Igneous Province geology.