Abstract

Secular changes in bulk sedimentation have a significant impact on the preservation of climatic signals in rhythmically bedded strata. In this study a quantitative cyclostratigraphic methodology is developed to use these signal distortions as a means to reconstruct sedimentation. The method exploits a moving-window Fourier technique that we designate "evolutive harmonic analysis" (EHA). We calibrate this methodology to a specific set of geologic conditions (i.e., changes in bulk sedimentation) using a series of stratigraphic models and then apply the technique to the Cenomanian-Turonian Greenhorn Formation of the Western Interior basin. Application of EHA to strata that preserve a record of orbital forcing allows the reconstruction of a high-resolution sedimentation history in which bulk sedimentation rates and hiatuses are quantified. Using the data on bulk sedimentation rate, rates of accumulation for geochemical proxies representing detrital, biogenic, and authigenic contributions to the sediment can be calculated. By integrating these quantitative assessments of siliciclastic dilution, primary production, and depositional redox conditions within a high-resolution chronostratigraphic framework, we are able to deconvolve secular trends in hemipelagic sedimentation during the Late Cenomanian-Early Turonian in the Western Interior basin. This integrated quantitative stratigraphic approach allows a reevaluation of hypotheses for the accumulation of excess organic matter in the Western Interior basin during the interval representing Oceanic Anoxic Event II.

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