Carbon isotopic evidence for organic matter oxidation in soils of the Old Red Sandstone (Silurian to Devonian, South Wales, UK)

A. T. Brasier, Jenny Morris, R. D. Hillier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Petrographic and calcrete carbon isotope data from seasonally waterlogged Upper Silurian (Přídolí) to Lower Devonian (Pragian) palaeo-Vertisols of the Old Red Sandstone, South Wales, UK, are presented. The δ13C values mostly range from -9 to -12‰ (VPDB), suggesting that the soils were inhabited by abundant vegetation that when oxidized (perhaps with microbial assistance) resulted in CO2-rich soils. Such soils would favour calcrete precipitation through equilibration of soil zone CO2 with the relatively lower atmospheric pCO2. However, reliably estimating palaeoatmospheric pCO2 using these carbon isotope data is a challenge.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)621-634
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of the Geological Society
Volume171
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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