Ocean acidification in the aftermath of the Marinoan glaciation

Boron isotope patterns preserved in cap carbonates deposited in the aftermath of the younger Cryogenian (Marinoan, ca. 635 Ma) glaciation confirm a temporary ocean acidification event on the continental margin of the southern Congo craton, Namibia. To test the significance of this acidification event and reconstruct Earth’s global seawater pH states at the Cryogenian-Ediacaran transition, we present a new boron isotope data set recorded in cap carbonates deposited on the Yangtze Platform in south China and on the Karatau microcontinent in Kazakhstan. Our compiled δ11B data reveal similar ocean pH patterns for all investigated cratons and confirm the presence of a global and synchronous ocean acidification event during the Marinoan deglacial period, compatible with elevated postglacial pCO2 concentrations. Differences in the details of the ocean acidification event point to regional distinctions in the buffering capacity of Ediacaran seawater.

Ohnemueller F., Prave A. R., Fallick A. E. & Kasemann S. A., in press. Ocean acidification in the aftermath of the Marinoan glaciation. Geology. Article (subcription required).

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