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Evidence of rapid Cenozoic uplift of the shoulder escarpment of the Cenozoic West Antarctic rift system and a speculation on possible climate forcing

Geology

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Abstract

The Cenozoic West Antarctic rift system, characterized by Cenozoic bimodal alkalic volcanic rocks, extends over a largely ice-covered area, from the Ross Sea nearly to the Bellingshausen Sea. Various lines of evidence lead to the following interpretation: the transantarctic Mountains part of the rift shoulder (and probably the entire shoulder) has been rising since about 60 Ma, at episodic rates of ~1 km/m.y., most recently since mid-Pliocene Time, rather than continuously at the mean rate of 100 m/m.y. Uplift rates vary along the scarp, which is cut by transverse faults. It is speculated that this uplift may have climatically forced the advance of the Antarctic ice sheet since the most recent warm period. A possible synergistic relation is suggested between episodic tectonism, mountain uplift, and volcanism in the Cenozoic West Antarctic rift system and waxing and waning of the Antarctic ice sheet beginning about earliest Oligocene time. -from Authors

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Evidence of rapid Cenozoic uplift of the shoulder escarpment of the Cenozoic West Antarctic rift system and a speculation on possible climate forcing
Series title:
Geology
Volume
19
Issue:
4
Year Published:
1991
Language:
English
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
Geology
First page:
315
Last page:
319