During the past 30 years, since the first edition of this publication (Curry et al. 1978), both the absolute chronology of the Tertiary, and its calibration to other geochronological and biochronological events, have been progressively refined and stabilized. This has resulted from resolution of the relationships of successions in different areas, largely through biostratigraphy, magnetostratigraphy and improved radiometric dating. Important milestones during the earlier part of this period have been syntheses by Berggren et al. (1985, 1995), Haq et al. (1987, 1988) and Harland (1990). The Berggren et al. (1995) publication incorporated a rigorous re-evaluation of key planktonic foraminiferid and calcareous nannoplankton datums, and their calibration to the magnetostratigraphic and geochronological scale. It also incorporated the first astronomically tuned calibration of the timescale, which had been extended ‘downwards’ from the Pleistocene through the Pliocene by this time. The Berggren et al. (1995) timescale remained the standard reference for almost a decade.
Figures & Tables
This Special Report comprehensively describes the stratigraphy and correlation of the Tertiary (Paleogene-Neogene) rocks of NW Europe and the adjacent Atlantic Ocean and is the summation of fifty years of research on Tertiary sediments by Chris King. His book is essential reading for all geologists who deal with Tertiary rocks across NW Europe, including those in the petroleum industry and geotechnical services as well as academic stratigraphers and palaeontologists.
Introductory sections on chronostratigraphy, biostratigraphy and other methods of dating and correlation are followed by a regional summary of Tertiary sedimentary basins and their framework and an introduction to Tertiary igneous rocks. The third and largest segment comprises the regional stratigraphic summaries. Regions covered are the North Sea Basin, on shore areas of southern England and the eastern English Channel area, the North Atlantic margins (including non-marine basins in the Irish Sea and elsewhere) and the Paleogene igneous rocks of Scotland.