Tectonic subsidence and sea-level changes: a reappraisal

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Abstract

Major advances in quantitative basin analysis have been made during the past decade. Lithospheric processes are not only crucial as a cause of long-term subsidence but are also of fundamental importance as a cause for short-term deviations from long-term patterns of thermal subsidence. Regional and global tectonics contribute signficantly to the record of sea-level changes. Both rifting and compression can give rise to phases of rapid subsidence that were hitherto commonly attributed to renewed phases of crustal stretching. These findings allow a critical appraisal of some concepts in basin formation and basin evolution that are vital in modern analysis of tectonic subsidence and basin correlation.