Title: New insights in the Late Pliocene and Early Pleistocene vegetation and climate stratigraphy of NW Europe

Timme Henrik Donders (1), Alexander Houben (2), Cohen Kim (1), Ding Hao (1), Krom Lisanne (1), Busschers Freek (2), Dearing Crampton-Flood Emily (3), Verreussel Roel (2) & Peterse Francien (1)

Faculty of Geosciences, Utrecht University, The Netherlands (1); Geological Survey of the Netherlands, Utrecht, The Netherlands (2); The University of Manchester, Manchester, UK (3)

Event: Abstract GeoUtrecht2020

Date: 2020

DOI: 10.48380/dggv-t6xk-1f45

The chronostratigraphy and climate record of the Late Pliocene and Early Pleistocene in Northwest Europe was spurred by pioneering work in the 1960’s by Waldo Zagwijn. This period is particularly important because of the inception of ice sheets in the Northern Hemisphere. However, the classic stratigraphic framework based on palynology is difficult to couple to the Marine Isotopic Stages (MIS) due to a lack of independent dating of the terrestrial deposits. The type area in the Dutch-German border area is characterized by a complex local stratigraphy and represents an incomplete sedimentary record.

We aim to reconstruct a new stratigraphic composite reference section for the Late Pliocene and Lower Pleistocene of the shallow marine to deltaic deposits of the north-western Netherlands and North Sea. Recent borehole analyses show clear Late Pliocene to earliest Pleistocene interglacial-glacial cyclicity in the Netherlands, expressing variation in sediment supply, large-scale landscape reorganisation and terrestrial temperature variation.

A new 380 m deep onshore borehole targets Early Pleistocene vegetation and marine ecosystem change, in relation to the glacioeustatic and paleoclimatic cyclicity. The shallow-marine to deltaic facies are logged in detail and yield well-preserved and diversified pollen and organic-walled dinoflagellate cyst associations. New onshore and offshore paleomagnetic data allow an improved tie of the terrestrial pollen zones to the MIS‘s. The integrated marine- and terrestrial palynostratigraphic framework for the Late Pliocene and Early Pleistocene of the Netherlands, in a scientific drilling framework, will lead to improved reconstructions of climate, sea-level and sediment provenance.

: Europe

Back to list