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The influence of carbonate platform interactions with subduction zone volcanism on palaeo-atmospheric CO_2 since the Devonian

Pall, Jodie and Zahirovic, Sabin and Doss, Sebastiano and Hassan, Rakib and Matthews, Kara J. and Cannon, John and Gurnis, Michael and Moresi, Louis and Lenardic, Adrian and Müller, R. Dietmar (2018) The influence of carbonate platform interactions with subduction zone volcanism on palaeo-atmospheric CO_2 since the Devonian. Climate of the Past, 14 (6). pp. 857-870. ISSN 1814-9324. doi:10.5194/cp-14-857-2018.

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The CO_2 liberated along subduction zones through intrusive/extrusive magmatic activity and the resulting active and diffuse outgassing influences global atmospheric CO_2. However, when melts derived from subduction zones intersect buried carbonate platforms, decarbonation reactions may cause the contribution to atmospheric CO_2 to be far greater than segments of the active margin that lacks buried carbon-rich rocks and carbonate platforms. This study investigates the contribution of carbonate-intersecting subduction zones (CISZs) to palaeo-atmospheric CO_2 levels over the past 410 million years by integrating a plate motion and plate boundary evolution model with carbonate platform development through time. Our model of carbonate platform development has the potential to capture a broader range of degassing mechanisms than approaches that only account for continental arcs. Continuous and cross-wavelet analyses as well as wavelet coherence are used to evaluate trends between the evolving lengths of carbonate-intersecting subduction zones, non-carbonate-intersecting subduction zones and global subduction zones, and are examined for periodic, linked behaviour with the proxy CO_2 record between 410 Ma and the present. Wavelet analysis reveals significant linked periodic behaviour between 60 and 40 Ma, when CISZ lengths are relatively high and are correlated with peaks in palaeo-atmospheric CO_2, characterised by a 32–48 Myr periodicity and a  ∼  8–12 Myr lag of CO_2 peaks following CISZ length peaks. The linked behaviour suggests that the relative abundance of CISZs played a role in affecting global climate during the Palaeogene. In the 200–100 Ma period, peaks in CISZ lengths align with peaks in palaeo-atmospheric CO_2, but CISZ lengths alone cannot be determined as the cause of a warmer Cretaceous–Jurassic climate. Nevertheless, across the majority of the Phanerozoic, feedback mechanisms between the geosphere, atmosphere and biosphere likely played dominant roles in modulating climate. Our modelled subduction zone lengths and carbonate-intersecting subduction zone lengths approximate magmatic activity through time, and can be used as input into fully coupled models of CO_2 flux between deep and shallow carbon reservoirs.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Zahirovic, Sabin0000-0002-6751-4976
Matthews, Kara J.0000-0003-3249-3869
Cannon, John0000-0003-4749-5605
Gurnis, Michael0000-0003-1704-597X
Moresi, Louis0000-0003-3685-174X
Müller, R. Dietmar0000-0002-3334-5764
Alternate Title:The influence of carbonate platform interactions with subduction zone volcanism on palaeo-atmospheric CO2 since the Devonian
Additional Information:© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License. Published by Copernicus Publications on behalf of the European Geosciences Union. Received: 04 Sep 2017 – Discussion started: 19 Sep 2017. Revised: 01 Jun 2018 – Accepted: 07 Jun 2018 – Published: 21 Jun 2018. The authors acknowledge and thank the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the Deep Carbon Observatory (DCO) for funding this research. We would also like to thank members of the EarthByte Group for all their assistance, as well as the University of Sydney for supporting open source and open access research. Author contributions: SD and JP developed the Subduction Zone toolkit together and carried out modelling experiments under the supervision of DM and SZ. Figures were prepared by JP and SD, and the toolkit repository was prepared by SD. JP conducted wavelet analysis with assistance from RH. JP also prepared the manuscript with contributions from all co-authors. The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
Group:Seismological Laboratory
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Alfred P. Sloan FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Deep Carbon ObservatoryUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:6
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20180705-081138932
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Official Citation:Pall, J., Zahirovic, S., Doss, S., Hassan, R., Matthews, K. J., Cannon, J., Gurnis, M., Moresi, L., Lenardic, A., and Müller, R. D.: The influence of carbonate platform interactions with subduction zone volcanism on palaeo-atmospheric CO2 since the Devonian, Clim. Past, 14, 857-870,, 2018
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:87544
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:05 Jul 2018 17:33
Last Modified:15 Nov 2021 20:49

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