Abstract

Field data from the Upper Cretaceous Blackhawk Formation in the Book Clitfs (Utah–Colorado) demonstrate the presence of laterally extensive carbonate cements beneath major marine flooding surfaces. The occurrence of firmgrounds, compaction around concretions, and high minus-cement porosities indicate that cementation occurred during early diagenesis. It is proposed that the early cementation associated with these marine flooding surfaces occurred as a result of reduced sediment accumulation rates or non-depositional hiatuses linked to abrupt deepening during marine flooding. These reduced sediment accumulation rates extended sediment residence time within early diagenetic zones, leading to enhanced early cementation in shallow marine sandstones and mudstones.

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