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Early Rifting Deposition: Examples from Carbonate Sequences of Sardinia (Cambrian) and Tuscany (Triassic-Jurassic), Italy: An Analogous Tectono-Sedimentary and Climatic Context

Tommaso Cocozza, Previous HitAnnaTop Gandin

Lower Cambrian Ceroide Limestone (Sardinia) and Lower Jurassic Massiccio Limestone (Tuscany) belong to sequences deposited in analogous tectono-sedimentary context: the former linked to the Caledonian Sardic Phase, the latter to the Alpine Orogeny. Both units consist of massive pure limestone characterized by marginal and lagoonal sequences repeatedly interfingering in the same geological structure. This distribution indicates a morphology of the platforms composed of banks (marginal facies) and shallow basins (lagoonal facies) comparable with a Bahamian complex. Dolomitization affects patchily the massive limestone bodies, and karstic features, breccias, and sedimentary dikes occur at their upper boundary. Both units overlie early dolomite and evaporites (sabkha facies) ontaining siliciclastic intercalations in their lower and/or upper part and are unconformably covered by open-shelf red (hematitic), nodular limestone (Ammonitico Rosso facies). The sedimentary evolution of the two sequences appears to have been controlled by synsedimentary tectonics whose major effects are the end of the terrigenous input, the bank-and-basin morphology of the platform, the irregular distribution of the dolomitization, and the nodular fabric of the overlying facies. The end of the Bahamian-type system is marked by the karstification of the emerged blocks and is followed by their differential sinking and burial under red-nodular facies. From a geodynamic viewpoint, sequences composed of Bahamian-like platform carbonates followed by Ammonitico Rosso facies imply deposition along continental margins subjected to block-faulting during an extensional regime connected with the beginning of continental rifting. Moreover, the variation from sabkha to Bahamian conditions suggests the drifting of the continent from arid to humid, tropical areas.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #91038©1987 AAPG Annual Convention, Los Angeles, California, June 7-10, 1987.