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TitleSubglacial recharge into the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin--impact of Pleistocene glaciation on basin hydrodynamics
AuthorGrasby, S E; Chen, Z
SourceGeological Society of America Bulletin vol. 117, no. 3-4, 2005 p. 500-514,
Alt SeriesGeological Survey of Canada, Contribution Series 2004012
PublisherGeological Society of America
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formathtml; pdf
ProvinceBritish Columbia; Alberta; Manitoba
NTS62; 63; 64; 72; 73; 74; 82; 83; 84
AreaWestern Canada Sedimentary Basin
Lat/Long WENS-120.0000 -96.0000 60.0000 49.0000
Subjectshydrogeology; sedimentology; recharge rates; eskers; sedimentary basins; hot springs geochemistry; salt springs; spring water geochemistry; carbonates; glacial history; meltwater channels; permeability; subglacial recharge; hydrogeology; eskers
Illustrationslocation maps; cross-sections; tables; graphs; cross-sections, stratigraphic; equations
AbstractBrine springs discharging from Devonian carbonates of the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin have distinct water chemistry from brines in laterally equivalent units deeper in the basin. Stable isotope data suggest that the brine springs originated as Pleistocene meltwater. These waters are interpreted to originate as an infl ux of subglacial meltwater related to a reversal of the basin-scale flow system, caused by the overriding ice sheet. Esker distribution shows a notable relationship between shield and sedimentary rocks. An integrated edimentary basin/ice sheet model supports the interpretation that high permeability carbonate units acted as preferential subglacial drains that in turn affected esker development. The fluid flow history of the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin is characterized by back-and-forth movement through geological time in response to changing boundary conditions. Modern-day flow systems may not then be indicative of historic movement of economic fluids through the basin.