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Reconstructing Neoproterozoic seawater chemistry from early diagenetic dolomite

Peter W. Crockford, Marcus Kunzmann, Clara L. Blaettler, Boriana Kalderon-Asael, Jack G. Murphy, Anne-Sofie Ahm, Shlomit Sharoni, Galen P. Halverson, Noah J. Planavsky, Itay Halevy and John A. Higgins
Reconstructing Neoproterozoic seawater chemistry from early diagenetic dolomite
Geology (Boulder) (December 2020) 49 (4): 442-446


The pairing of calcium and magnesium isotopes (delta (super 44/40) Ca, delta (super 26) Mg) has recently emerged as a useful tracer to understand the environmental information preserved in shallow-marine carbonates. Here, we applied a Ca and Mg isotopic framework, along with analyses of carbon and lithium isotopes, to late Tonian dolostones, to infer seawater chemistry across this critical interval of Earth history. We investigated the ca. 735 Ma Coppercap Formation in northwestern Canada, a unit that preserves large shifts in carbonate delta 13C values that have been utilized in global correlations and have canonically been explained through large shifts in organic carbon burial. Under the backdrop of these delta (super 13) C shifts, we observed positive excursions in delta (super 44/40) Ca and delta (super 7) Li values that are mirrored by a negative excursion in delta (super 26) Mg values. We argue that this covariation is due to early diagenetic dolomitization of aragonite through interaction with contemporaneous seawater under a continuum of fluid- to sediment-buffered conditions. We then used this framework to show that Tonian seawater was likely characterized by a delta (super 7) Li value of approximately 13 ppm ( approximately 18 ppm lower than modern seawater), as a consequence of a different Li cycle than today. In contrast, delta (super 13) C values across our identified fluid-buffered interval are similar to modern seawater. These observations suggest that factors other than shifts in global seawater chemistry are likely responsible for such isotopic variation.

ISSN: 0091-7613
EISSN: 1943-2682
Serial Title: Geology (Boulder)
Serial Volume: 49
Serial Issue: 4
Title: Reconstructing Neoproterozoic seawater chemistry from early diagenetic dolomite
Affiliation: Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel
Pages: 442-446
Published: 20201210
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States
References: 30
Accession Number: 2021-010114
Categories: StratigraphyIsotope geochemistry
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. sketch maps
N64°37'00" - N64°37'00", W129°41'60" - W129°41'60"
Secondary Affiliation: Princeton University, USA, United StatesCSIRO, AUS, AustraliaUniversity of Chicago, USA, United StatesYale University, USA, United StatesMcGill University, CAN, Canada
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2022, American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from GeoScienceWorld, Alexandria, VA, United States. Reference includes data supplied by the Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, United States
Update Code: 202107
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