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New magnetostratigraphic results from a 3300 m-thick section across the syntectonic fluvial sediments of the Campodarbe Formation (Upper Eocene–Oligocene) in the Ebro foreland basin (NE Spain) are presented. The new data allow the top of the Campodarbe Formation to be correlated to Chron 7r (Chattian), younger than previously stated (C10r), therefore shifting the age of significant palaeogeographical changes in the foreland basin. The deformation in the southern front produces the cannibalization in the piggyback basin of 1300 m of sediments spanning c. 3.7 Myr. Average accumulation rates are lower in the Ebro foreland basin than in the piggyback basin and decrease from 35 to 27 cm kyr−1 by the time the San Felices thrust sheet activity decelerates (at c. 28 Myr). Shifts of accumulation rates result from accommodation space changes, which occur locally and are linked to the activity of the San Felices thrust, while the sediment supply occurs at orogenic scale (source of sediments is c. 200 km to the NE). Finally, sequence boundaries previously considered isochronous in the continental record of the Cenozoic Pyrenean basins are revealed to be 1.8–1 Myr older in the piggyback basin than in the Ebro foreland basin.

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