New sedimentological sea-level indicators are presented from the River Magra coastal plain, in NW Italy. Chronologically well-constrained paralic peats and organic sediments which had been deposited in a defined relationship with sea level were recovered in four of the seven boreholes considered in this work. Their evolution scatters in the time span of the past 6000 years. Since the cores are located within a single sedimentary basin, it was possible to correct the elevation of marker horizons for the effect of sediment compaction by means of both a field and a geotechnical method. Thus, seven reliable index points for the mid- to late-Holocene sea-level rise were obtained. The age–depth model derived from them was compared with that of sea-level predictions from two different Glacial Isostatic Adjustment (GIA) models available for the area. In both cases, the modelled sea-level estimates overlie the index points, suggesting lower relative sea-level elevation than the one predicted considering the combined eustatic and hydro-isostatic components. Based on the general tectonic setting of the area, this finding was interpreted as the effect of a tectonic subsidence of the basin, the rate of which can be quantified on average as 0.5 mm/yr since the middle Holocene, with a sharp increase after 2500 yr BP. By providing a reliable estimate of the rate of tectonic subsidence in a coastal area of NW Italy, this research contributes to refining the geodynamic model of this part of the Mediterranean basin.

Assessing tectonic subsidence from estimates of Holocene relative sea-level change: An example from the NW Mediterranean (Magra Plain, Italy)

SPADA, GIORGIO
2017

Abstract

New sedimentological sea-level indicators are presented from the River Magra coastal plain, in NW Italy. Chronologically well-constrained paralic peats and organic sediments which had been deposited in a defined relationship with sea level were recovered in four of the seven boreholes considered in this work. Their evolution scatters in the time span of the past 6000 years. Since the cores are located within a single sedimentary basin, it was possible to correct the elevation of marker horizons for the effect of sediment compaction by means of both a field and a geotechnical method. Thus, seven reliable index points for the mid- to late-Holocene sea-level rise were obtained. The age–depth model derived from them was compared with that of sea-level predictions from two different Glacial Isostatic Adjustment (GIA) models available for the area. In both cases, the modelled sea-level estimates overlie the index points, suggesting lower relative sea-level elevation than the one predicted considering the combined eustatic and hydro-isostatic components. Based on the general tectonic setting of the area, this finding was interpreted as the effect of a tectonic subsidence of the basin, the rate of which can be quantified on average as 0.5 mm/yr since the middle Holocene, with a sharp increase after 2500 yr BP. By providing a reliable estimate of the rate of tectonic subsidence in a coastal area of NW Italy, this research contributes to refining the geodynamic model of this part of the Mediterranean basin.
Chelli, Alessandro; Pappalardo, Marta; Bini, Monica; Brückner, Helmut; Neri, Giorgio; Neri, Michele; SPADA, GIORGIO
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/771717
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