Carbonate diagenesis is now much more interesting than it used to be: I’ll prove it

Paul Wright - National Museum Wales & PW Carbonate Geoscience

While ever-improving analytical techniques and the ability to absolute date diagenetic phases are driving ever more sophisticated interpretations in carbonate sedimentology, observation-based studies have also led to huge shifts in how we perceive carbonate diagenesis. We now appreciate, but have yet to fully understand, how critically important mineral transformations and translocations in marine fluids are during even very shallow burial. What controls diagenesis in shallow meteoric systems is also being revised, and there is a rapidly growing appreciation of the extent of how hypogene fluids have the ability to modify limestones even at the seismic-scale. Thus the framework in which we interpret marine, meteoric and burial carbonate diagenesis has been, and still is, undergoing a series of paradigm shifts.