Interplay between detrital and diagenetic processes since the last glacial maximum on the northwest Iberian continental shelf

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Mohamed, Kais Jacob
Rey, Daniel
Rubio, Belen
Vilas, Federico
Frederichs, Thomas
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Environmental magnetism
Detrital input
Iberian continental shelf
Early diagenesis
Paleoclimatic evolution
Integrated analyses of magnetic, geochemical and textural data on six cores from the northwestern Iberian continental shelf allowed the reconstruction of the paleoenvironmental evolution of this area since the last glacial maximum (LGM). Four sedimentary units were identified, representing a succession from fluvial and subaerial settings to high and finally low-energy marine deposits subsequent to the post-LGM sea evel rise. The uppermost unit was deposited during the Holocene and its magnetic properties were controlled by the interplay between detrital input and early diagenetic reductive dissolution of magnetic minerals. Identification of a primary steady-state early diagenetic signal allowed the recognition of periods of increased detrital input bounded by intervals of lower detrital input and intensified reductive diagenesis related related to upwelling intensifications in the area. These paleoenvironmental alternations are consistent with the climatic evolution of the late Holocene. During the Roman Warm Period (RWP) and Medieval Warm Period (MWP), the combined effect of greater humidity and intense agricultural and mining activities led to a greater erosion and transport of detrital sediments to the shelf. In contrast, enhanced diagenetic reduction intervals, caused by upwelling intensification, were roughly coincident with the colder Dark Ages (DA) and the Little Ice Age (LIA).
Author Posting. © The Author(s), 2010. This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of Elsevier B.V. for personal use, not for redistribution. The definitive version was published in Quaternary Research 73 (2010): 507-520, doi:10.1016/j.yqres.2010.02.003.
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