Martin Gibling on Rivers in the Geological Record - Part 1
Listen now
Description
Rivers can seem very ephemeral, often changing course or drying up entirely.  Yet some rivers have persisted for tens or even hundreds of millions of years, even testifying to the breakup of Pangea, the most recent supercontinent, about 200 million years ago.  On the one hand, their courses may be determined by tectonic processes such as the formation of mountain belts.  And on the other, they themselves can affect tectonic processes by creating continent-scale features, such as giant submarine fans. Martin Gibling has spent a lifetime studying rivers and river sediments around the world.  He is Emeritus Professor in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia in Canada. This episode is the first of two of our conversation about rivers.  In this episode we talk about fluvial deposits in the geological record and the impact of the break-up of Pangea on river systems.  In the second episode we talk specifically about the history of the rivers of Europe and the Americas, as well as the impact of recent ice ages.  We end by considering how humans have changed rivers and their deposits throughout human history.  For pictures and figures that support this podcast, go to geologybites.com.
More Episodes
We know that most magma originates in the Earth’s mantle. As it pushes up through the many kilometers of lithosphere to the surface, it pauses in one or more magma chambers or partially melted mush zones for periods of up to a few millennia before erupting. But while we have seismic evidence and...
Published 05/06/24
Published 05/06/24
At roughly 15-25-million-year intervals since the Archean, huge volumes of lava have spewed onto the Earth’s surface. These form the large igneous provinces, which are called flood basalts when they occur on continents. As Richard Ernst explains in the podcast, the eruption of a large igneous...
Published 04/10/24