A sediment core (LS-1) collected from Long Lake in King George Island, South Shetland Islands (West Antarctica) was analyzed for a variety of textural, geochemical, isotopic and paleontological properties together with 14C age dates. These data combined with published records of other studies provide a detailed history of local/regional postglacial paleoproductivity variation with respect to terrestrial paleoclimate change. The lithologic contrast of a lower diamicton and an upper fine-grained sediment demonstrates glacial recession and subsequent lake formation. The upper fine-grained deposit, intercalated by mid-Holocene tephra-fallout followed by a tephra gravity flow, was formed in a lacustrine environment. Low total organic carbon (TOC) and biogenic silica (Sibio) contents with high C/N ratios characterize the diamicton, whereas an increase of TOC and Sibio contents characterize the postglacial lacustrine fine-grained sediments, which are dated at c. 4000 yrBP. More notable are the distinct TOC maxima, which may imply enhanced primary productivity during warm periods. Changes in Sibio content and δ13C values, which support the increasing paleoproductivity, are in sympathy with these organic matter variations. The uniform and low TOC contents that are decoupled by Sibio contents are attributed to the tephra gravity flows during the evolution of the lake rather than a reduced paleoproductivity. A very recent TOC maximum is also characterized by high Sibio content and δ13C values, clearly indicating increased paleoproductivity consequent upon gradual warming across King George Island . Comparable with changes in sediment geochemistry, the occurrence and abundance of several diatom species corroborate the paleoproductivity variations together with the lithologic development. However, the paleoclimatic signature in local terrestrial lake environment during the postglacial period (for example the Long Lake) seems to be less distinct, as compared to the marine environment.
The organic carbon (OC)-rich, black shale succession of the Middle Triassic Bravaisberget Formation in Spitsbergen contains scattered dolomite-ankerite cement in coarser-grained beds and intervals. This cement shows growth-related compositional trend from non-ferroan dolomite (0–5 mol % FeCO3) through ferroan dolomite (5–10 mol % FeCO3) to ankerite (10–20 mol % FeCO3, up to 1.7 mol % MnCO3) that is manifested by zoned nature of composite carbonate crystals. The d13C (-7.3‰ to -1.8‰ VPDB) and d18O (-9.4‰ to -6.0‰ VPDB) values are typical for burial cements originated from mixed inorganic and organic carbonate sources. The dolomite-ankerite cement formed over a range of diagenetic and burial environments, from early post-sulphidic to early catagenic. It reflects evolution of intraformational, compaction-derived marine fluids that was affected by dissolution of biogenic carbonate, clay mineral and iron oxide transformations, and thermal decomposition of organic carbon (decarboxylation of organic acids, kerogen breakdown). These processes operated during Late Triassic and post-Triassic burial history over a temperature range from approx. 40°C to more than 100°C, and contributed to the final stage of cementation of the primary pore space of siltstone and sandstone beds and intervals in the OC-rich succession.
51 samples from the Middle Triassic black shales (organic carbon−rich silt− stones; up to 4.9% TOC – Total Organic Carbon) from the stratotype section of the Bravaisberget Formation (western Spitsbergen) were analyzed with respect to isotopic composition of pyritic sulphur (34S) and TOC. Isotopic composition of syngenetic py− rite−bound sulphur shows wide (34S from −26‰ to +8‰ VCDT) and narrow (34S from −4‰ to +17‰ VCDT) variation of the 34S in upper and lower part of the section, respec− tively. Range of the variation is associated with abrupt changes in dominant lithology. Wide 34S variation is found in lithological intervals characterized by alternation of black shales and phosphorite−bearing sandstones. The narrow 34S variation is associated with the lithological interval dominated by black shales only. Wide and narrow variation of the #2;34S values suggests interplay of various factors in sedimentary environment. These fac− tors include oxygen concentration, clastic sedimentation rate, bottom currents and bur− rowing activity. Biological productivity and rate of dissimilatory sulphate reduction had important impact on the 34S variation as well. Wide variation of the 34S values in the studied section resulted from high biological productivity and high rate of dissimilatory sulphate reduction. Variable degree of clastic sedimentation rate and burrowing activity as well as the activity of poorly oxygenated bottom currents could also cause a co−occurrence of isotopically light and heavy pyrite in differentiated diagenetic micro−environments. Occurrence of organic matter depleted in hydrogen could also result in a wide variation of the 34S values. Narrow variation of the #2;34S values was due to a decrease of biological productivity and low rate of dissimilatory sulphate reduction. Low organic matter supply, low oxygen concentration and bottom currents and burrowing activity were also responsible for narrow variation of the 34S. The narrow range of the 34S variation was also due to occurrence of hydrogen−rich organic matter. In the studied section the major change in range of the 34S variation from wide to narrow appears to be abrupt and clearly associated with change in lithology. The change of lithology and isotopic valuesmay sug− gest evolution of the sedimentary environment from high− to low−energy and also facies succession from shallow to deeper shelf. The evolution should be linked with the Late Anisian regional transgressive pulse in the Boreal Ocean.
Diagenetic carbonate deposits (concretions, cementation bodies and cementstone bands) commonly occur in organic carbon-rich sequence of the Agardhfjellet Formation (Upper Jurassic) in Spitsbergen . They are dominated by dolomite/ankerite and siderite. These deposits originated as a result of displacive cementation of host sediment in a range of post-depositional environments, from shallow subsurface to deep-burial ones. Preliminary results of the carbon and oxygen isotopic survey of these deposits in southern Spitsbergen (Lĺgkollane, Ingebrigtsenbukta, Reinodden, and Lidfjellet sections) show the δ13C values ranging between –13.0‰ and –1.8‰ VPDB, and the δ18O values between –16.0‰ and –7.7‰ VPDB. These results suggest that the major stage of formation of the carbonate deposits occurred during burial diagenesis under increased temperature, most probably in late diagenetic to early catagenic environments. Carbonate carbon for mineral precipitation was derived from dissolution of skeletal carbonate and from thermal decomposition of organic matter.
The Silurian Pelplin Formation is a part of a thick, mud-prone distal fill of the Caledonian foredeep, which stretches along the western margin of the East European Craton. The Pelplin Formation consists of organic carbon- rich mudstones that have recently been the target of intensive investigations, as they represent a potential source of shale gas. The Pelplin mudstones host numerous calcite concretions containing authigenic pyrite and barite. Mineralogical and petrographic examination (XRD, optical microscopy, cathodoluminoscopy, SEM-EDS) and stable isotope analyses (δ13Corg, δ13C and δ18O of carbonates, δ34S and δ18O of barite) were carried out in order to understand the diagenetic conditions that led to precipitation of this carbonate-sulfide-sulfate paragenesis and to see if the concretions can enhance the understanding of sedimentary settings in the Baltic and Lublin basins during the Silurian. Barite formed during early diagenesis before and during the concretionary growth due to a deceleration of sedimentation during increased primary productivity. The main stages of concretionary growth took place in yet uncompacted sediments shortly after their deposition in the sulfate reduction zone. This precompactional cementation led to preferential preservation of original sedimentary structures, faunal assemblages and early- diagenetic barite, which have been mostly lost in the surrounding mudstones during burial. These components allowed for the reconstruction of important paleoenvironmental conditions in the Baltic and Lublin basins, such as depth, proximity to the detrital orogenic source and marine primary productivity. Investigation of the concretions also enabled estimation of the magnitude of mechanical compaction of the mudstones and calculation of original sedimentation rates. Moreover, it showed that biogenic methane was produced at an early-diagenetic stage, whereas thermogenic hydrocarbons migrated through the Pelplin Formation during deep burial.
Modern hydrology of a typical Arctic fjord (Hornsund, SW Spitsbergen, Sval− bard) was investigated and compared with commonly used in paleoceanography proxies: benthic foraminiferal assemblages and their stable isotope (#2;18O and #2;13C) composition. The benthic foraminifera from Hornsund comprised 45 species and 28 genera. Their spatial variations follow the zonation pattern, resulting from the influence of Atlantic water at the fjord mouth and glacial meltwaters at the fjord head. At the mouth of the fjord, the total number of species and the contribution of agglutinating species were the highest. In the in− ner part of fjord, the foraminiferal faunas were poor in species and individuals, and aggluti− nating species were absent. “Living” (stained) foraminifera were found to be common throughout the short sediment cores (~10 cm long) studied. The stable isotope values of #2;18O and #2;13C were measured on tests of four species: Elphidium excavatum forma clavata, Cassidulina reniforme, Nonionellina labradorica and Cibicides lobatulus. The results con− firmed the importance of species−specific vital effects, particularly in the case of C. loba− tulus. The variability in the isotopic composition measured on different individuals within a single sample are comparable to isotopic composition of the same species test between sam− pling stations. The temperatures and bottom water salinities calculated from #2;18O values in different foraminifera tests mirrored those recorded for bottom waters in the central and outer fjords relatively well. However, in the case of the inner fjord, where winter−cooled bottom waters were present, the calculated values from #2;18O were systematically higher by about 2#3;C. The obtained results imply that particular caution must be taken in interpretation of fjord benthic foraminifera assemblages in high resolution studies and in selection of ma− terial for isotope analyses and their interpretation in cores from inner fjords or silled fjords, where winter−cooled waters may be present.