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TitlePostglacial rebound at the northern Cascadia subduction zone
AuthorJames, T S; Clague, J J; Wang, K; Hutchinson, I
SourceQuaternary Science Reviews 19, 2000 p. 1527-1541,
Alt SeriesGeological Survey of Canada, Contribution Series 1998125
PublisherElsevier BV
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
ProvinceBritish Columbia
NTS92; 102I; 102P
AreaCordillera; Puget Lowland; United States of America; Canada
Lat/Long WENS-130.0000 -120.0000 52.0000 47.0000
Subjectssurficial geology/geomorphology; isostatic rebound; postglacial emergence; postglacial evolution; crustal tilt; crustal uplift; ice retreat; shoreline changes; sea level changes; proglacial lakes; Cascadia Subduction Zone; Cordilleran Ice-Sheet; Quaternary
Illustrationssketch maps; graphs; tables
AbstractPostglacial rebound is the response of the Earth to the decay of ice-sheets. A postglacial rebound model explains crustal tilting and rapid uplift at the northern Cascadia subduction zone that occurred during retreat of the Cordilleran ice-sheet. Observations explained by the model include the shoreline tilts of two proglacial lakes that formed at 13.5-14 ka (14C yr ago) and rapid sea level fall (land uplift) at 12-12.5 ka. Modelled mantle viscosity values range from 5×1018 to 5×1019 Pa s, and are consistent with previous viscosity inferences from observations of crustal deformation following subduction zone earthquakes (1018-1019 Pa s). No lower limit to subduction zone mantle viscosity is apparent from our model, but viscosity values equal to or larger than 1020 Pa s are definitely ruled out. Our modelled subduction zone viscosity values are smaller than most upper-mantle viscosity estimates derived from postglacial rebound studies of tectonically less-active regions (1020-1021 Pa s). The rapid observed uplift at 12 ka requires, in addition to a low mantle viscosity, rapid unloading from a sudden collapse of remaining coastal portions of the southern Cordilleran ice-sheet. The sudden collapse provides 0.18 m of global eustatic sea level rise, approximately 0.7% of the sea level rise associated with melt-water pulse IA. Predictions of a global postglacial rebound model (ICE-3G) with a 1021 Pa s upper-mantle viscosity were previously applied to geodetic data from this region to isolate signals associated with the earthquake cycle. Owing to the low-viscosity values, and resulting rapid recovery of glacial deformation, our model predicts present-day postglacial rebound uplift rates at least 10 times smaller than ICE-3G (less than about 0.1 mm/yr). As the ICE-3G adjustments were substantial, this indicates the need for re-evaluation of the geodetic data.

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