Biological overprint of the geological carbon cycle

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doi: 10.1016/j.margeo.2004.08.005
Author(s): Katz, Miriam E.; Wright, James D.; Miller, Kenneth G.; Cramer, Benjamin S.; Fennel, Katja; Falkowski, Paul G.
Author Affiliation(s): Primary:
Rutgers University, Department of Geological Sciences, Piscataway, NJ, United States
Stanford University, United States
Tohoku University, United States
Volume Title: Ocean chemistry over the Phanerozoic and its links to geological processes
Volume Author(s): de la Rocha, Christina L., editor; Paytan, Adina
Source: Ocean chemistry over the Phanerozoic and its links to geological processes, edited by Christina L. de la Rocha and Adina Paytan. Marine Geology, 217(3-4), p.323-338. Publisher: Elsevier, Amsterdam, Netherlands. ISSN: 0025-3227 CODEN: MAGEA6
Note: In English. 124 refs.; illus., incl. strat. cols.
Summary: The oxidation of Earth's atmosphere is coupled to the net sequestration of organic matter, which is related to the relative fractions of organic carbon (forg) and carbonate (fcarb) buried in marine sediments. These fractions can be inferred from carbon isotope data. We present bulk sediment δ13C records of carbonate (δ13Ccarb) and organic carbon (δ13Corg) with a compilation of evolutionary trajectories of major eucaryotic phytoplankton for the past 205 million years. Our analysis indicates that changes in phytoplankton community structure, coupled with the opening of the Atlantic Ocean basin and global sea-level rise, increased the efficiency of organic carbon burial beginning in the Early Jurassic; in turn, this organic carbon burial increased the oxidation state of Earth's surface while drawing down atmospheric CO2 levels (assuming no substantial negative feedbacks). The net oxidation and CO2 drawdown appear to be related to the opening phase of the current Wilson cycle, where the newly formed passive plate margins store organic matter for hundreds of millions of years. This process should reverse during the closing phase of the Wilson cycle, when the continents reassemble and the Atlantic Ocean basin closes. The associated oxidation and storage of organic matter have contributed to the long-term depletion of CO2, which was a key factor that selected C4 photosynthetic pathways in marine and terrestrial ecosystems in the latter part of the Cenozoic; these pathways increasingly influenced δ13Corg, and ultimately contributed to the reversal of the long-term trend in δ13Ccarb. Abstract Copyright (2005) Elsevier, B.V.
Year of Publication: 2005
Research Program: DSDP Deep Sea Drilling Project
IPOD International Phase of Ocean Drilling
Key Words: 12 Stratigraphy, Historical Geology and Paleoecology; Atlantic Ocean; C-13; C-13/C-12; Carbon; Carbon cycle; Cenozoic; Cretaceous; DSDP Site 137; DSDP Site 525; DSDP Site 527; DSDP Site 528; Deep Sea Drilling Project; Geochemical cycle; Holocene; IPOD; Isotope ratios; Isotopes; Jurassic; Leg 14; Leg 74; Lower Jurassic; Marine geology; Marine sediments; Mesozoic; Models; Oxidation; Phytoplankton; Plankton; Processes; Quaternary; Reconstruction; Sampling; Sediments; Stable isotopes; Statistical analysis; Tertiary; Wilson cycle
Coordinates: S283130 S283129 E0021927 E0021926
S280230 S280229 E0014549 E0014547
Record ID: 2005049925
Copyright Information: GeoRef, Copyright 2019 American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data from CAPCAS, Elsevier Scientific Publishers, Amsterdam, Netherlands