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Assessment of Black Sea water-level fluctuations since the Last Glacial Maximum

By
G. Lericolais
G. Lericolais
Institut Français de Recherche pour l'Exploitation de la Mer (IFREMER), Centre de BREST, BP 70, F29200 Plouzané cedex, France
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F. Guichard
F. Guichard
Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l'Environnement (LSCE), CNRS-CEA, Avenue de la Terrasse, BP 1, 91198 Gif-sur-Yvette cedex, France
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C. Morigi
C. Morigi
Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS), Department of Stratigraphy, Øster Voldgade 10, 1350 Copenhagen, Denmark
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I. Popescu
I. Popescu
Institutul National de Cercetare-Dezvoltare pentru Geologie si Geoecologie Marina (GeoEcoMar), 23-25 Dimitrie Onciul Str, BP 34-51, Bucuresti, Romania
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C. Bulois
C. Bulois
School of Geological Sciences, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland
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H. Gillet
H. Gillet
Unité Mixte de Recherche (UMR) 5805, Environnements et Paléoenvironnements Océaniques (EPOC), Université Bordeaux 1, Avenue des Facultés, F33405 Talence, France
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W.B.F. Ryan
W.B.F. Ryan
Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Columbia University, 61 Route 9w, Palisades, New York 10964, USA
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Published:
January 01, 2011

This paper presents geophysical and core data obtained from several marine geology surveys carried out in the western Black Sea. These data provide a solid record of water-level fluctuation during the Last Glacial Maximum in the Black Sea. A Last Glacial Maximum lowstand wedge evidenced at the shelf edge in Romania, Bulgaria, and Turkey represents the starting point of this record. Then, a first transgressive system is identified as the Danube prodelta built under ~40 m of water depth. The related rise in water level is interpreted to have been caused by an increase in water provided to the Black Sea by the melting of the ice after 18,000 yr B.P., drained by the largest European rivers (Danube, Dnieper, Dniester). Subsequently, the Black Sea lacustrine shelf deposits formed a significant basinward-prograding wedge system, interpreted as forced regression system tracts. On top of these prograding sequences, there is a set of sand dunes that delineates a wave-cut terrace-like feature around the isobath −100 m. The upper part of the last prograding sequence is incised by anastomosed channels that end in the Danube (Viteaz) canyon, which are also built on the lacustrine prograding wedge. Overlying this succession, there is a shelfwide unconformity visible in very high-resolution seismic-reflection profiles and present all over the shelf. A uniform drape of marine sediment above the unconformity is present all over the continental shelf with practically the same thickness over nearby elevations and depressions. This mud drape represents the last stage of the Black Sea water-level fluctuation and is set after the reconnection of this basin with the Mediterranean Sea.

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GSA Special Papers

Geology and Geoarchaeology of the Black Sea Region: Beyond the Flood Hypothesis

Ilya V. Buynevich
Ilya V. Buynevich
Department of Earth and Environmental Science, Temple University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
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Valentina Yanko-Hombach
Valentina Yanko-Hombach
Avalon Institute of Applied Science, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, and Department of Physical and Marine Geology, Odessa National I.I. Mechnikov University, Odessa, Ukraine
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Allan S. Gilbert
Allan S. Gilbert
Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Fordham University, Bronx, New York, USA
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Ronald E. Martin
Ronald E. Martin
Department of Geological Sciences, University of Delaware, Newark, Delaware, USA
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Geological Society of America
Volume
473
ISBN print:
9780813724737
Publication date:
January 01, 2011

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