Advertisement

Chinese Science Bulletin

, Volume 57, Issue 24, pp 3130–3149 | Cite as

Cenozoic stratigraphy of Taiwan: Window into rifting, stratigraphy and paleoceanography of South China Sea

  • Chi-Yue HuangEmail author
  • Yi Yen
  • QuanHong Zhao
  • Chiou-Ting Lin
Open Access
Review Progress of Projects Supported by NSFC Special Topic: Deep Sea Processes and Evolution of the South China Sea

Abstract

Shallow marine sequences of the northern South China Sea (SCS) are uplifted and exposed by plate convergence in the Taiwan mountain belt. These deposits provide detailed geological information about the rifting event, stratigraphy, sedimentology, paleoclimate and paleoceanography of the shallow SCS to compare with what are recorded in the ODP 1148 deep-sea core. Seismic surveys and marine micropalentological studies show that Eocene sequences in the offshore Taiwan Strait and onland Taiwan mountain belt are all deposited in rifting basins and are covered unconformably by the Late Oligocene-Neogene post-rifting strata. Between syn-rifting and post-rifting sequences, there is a regional break-up unconformity throughout the island. Early Oligocene and Late Eocene strata are missing along the break-up unconformity equivalent to the T7 unconformity in the Pearl River Mouth Basin off south China. This may suggest that the SCS oceanic crust could have initiated between 33 and 39 Ma. Neither obvious stratigraphic gap nor slumping features are found in the Oligocene-Miocene transition interval of Taiwan. This observation highly contrasts with what has been documented from the ODP 1148 deep-sea core. This suggests that the stratigraphic gap and slumping features could only be recorded in the SCS deep sea region, but not in the shallow shelf near Taiwan. Compared to the Middle Miocene paleoceanographic re-organization events in the SCS deep sea, the geological history of the Taiwan shallow sequence shows changes of in sedimentation and faunal composition. Due to the Antarctic glacial expansion at ∼14 Ma, Middle to late Miocene strata of the Western Foothills show progressive regression sedimentations associated with a decrease of benthic foraminiferal abundance and a sharp faunal turnover event. Many Early-Middle Miocene endemic benthic foraminifers were extinct in 14-13 Ma and new benthic foraminifers of the Kuroshio Current fauna appeared from 10.2 Ma, comparable with new occurrence of Modern benthic foraminifers at 9 Ma in the Java Sea area. This reveals that the Western Boundary Kuroshio Current in the North Pacific could initiate from 10-9 Ma due to closures of the Indo-Pacific seaways by convergent tectonics between the Australian Continent and the Indonesian Arc in 12-8 Ma. Subduction of the SCS oceanic lithosphere since the Middle Miocene resulted in formation of the Hengchun Ridge accretionary prism and the North Luzon Arc. Occurrence of these two bathymetric highs (−2400 m) since the Middle Miocene and closures of the inter-arc passages in the North Luzon arc in the last 3.5 Ma would control the water exchanges between the West Pacific and the deep SCS. Accordingly, the tectonic evolution in the Central Range-Hengchun Peninsula accretionary prism and the arc-forearc Coastal Range not only control directly the route for water exchanges between the West Pacific and the SCS, but also indirectly shows a great influence on the geochemistry of deep SCS waters. The latter is best shown by much negative carbon isotope values of benthic foraminifers in the ODP 1148 deep-sea core than the West Pacific records in the last 14 Ma.

Keywords

Taiwan Cenozoic stratigraphy South China Sea geological records ODP Site 1148 

Supplementary material

11434_2012_5349_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (3 mb)
Supplementary material, approximately 3.03 MB.

References

  1. 1.
    Taylor B, Hayes D E. The tectonic evolution of the South China Sea In: Hayes D E, ed. The Tectonic and Geological Evolution of Southeast Asian Seas and Islands, Part I. AGU Monogr, 1980, 23: 89–104Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Yao B, Zeng W, Hayes D E, et al, The geological memoir of South China Sea Surveyed Jointly by China and USA. Beijing: China University of Geosciences Press, 1994, 204Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Taylor B, Hayes D E. Origin and history of the South China Sea Basin In: Hayes D E, ed. The Tectonic and Geological Evolution of Southeast Asian Seas and Islands, Part II. AGU Monogr, 1983, 27: 23–56Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Tsai Y B. Seismotectonics of Taiwan. Tectono. 1986, 125: 17–37CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Huang C Y, Shyu C T, Lin, S B, et al. Marine geology in the arc-continent collision zone off southeastern Taiwan: Implications for late Neogene evolution of the Coastal Range. Mar Geol, 1992, 107: 183–212CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Huang C Y, Wu W Y, Chang C P, et al. Tectonic evolution of accretionary prism in the arc-continent collision terrane of Taiwan. Tectonophy, 1997, 281: 31–51CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Huang C Y, Yuan P B, Lin C W, et al. Geodynamic processes of Taiwan arc-continent collision and comparison with analogs in Timor, Papua New Guinea, Urals and Corsica. Tectonophy, 2000, 325: 1–21CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Sun S C. The Tertiary basins of offshore Taiwan. Proc 2nd ASCOPE Conference and Exhibition, Manila, Philippines, 1982, 125–135Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Reed D L, Lundberg N, Liu, C S, et al. Structural relations along the margins of the offshore Taiwan accretionary wedge: Implications for accretion and crustal kinematics: Acta Geol Taiwan, 1992, 30: 105–122Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Wang P, Li Q. The South China Sea. Paleoceanography and Sedimentology. Heidelberg: Springer: 2009, 515Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Wang P, Prell W L, Blum P. Proceeding of ODP Init. Repts. 184 (CD-ROM). Ocean Drilling Program, Texas A&M University, College Station, 2000, TX77845-9547Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Li Q, Wang P, Zhao Q, et al. A 33 Ma lithostratigraphic record of tectonic and paleoceanographic evolution of the South China Sea. Mar Geol, 230: 217–235Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Tian J, Shevenell A, Wang P, et al. Reorganization of Pacific Deep Waters linked to middle Miocene Antarctic cryosphere expansion: A perspective from the South China Sea. Paleogeogr Paleoclimatol Paleoecol, 2009, 284: 375–382CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Zhao Q, Jian Z, Wang P, et al. Neogene oxygen isotopic stratigraphy, ODP Site 1148, northern South China Sea. Sci China Ser D, 2001, 44: 939–942Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Zhao Q, Wang P, Cheng X, et al. A record of Miocene carbon excursions in the South China Sea. Sci China Ser D, 2001, 44: 943–951CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Hsiao P T, Hu C C, Lin K A, Hydrocarbon potential evaluation of the Penghu Basin. Petrol Geol Taiwan, 1991, 26: 215–229Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Yu J W, Radiometric ages of the igneous bodies in the wells in the Western central Taiwan (in Chinese). Chin Petrol Comp Expl Dev Res Bull, 1981, 4: 363–366Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Huang T C, Chi W R. Calcareous nannofossils of the subsurface Pre-Miocene rocks from the Peikang Basement High and adjacent areas in western Central Taiwan (Part II: Paleocene). Petrol Geol Taiwan, 1979, 16: 95–129Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Huang C Y, Significance of Eocene extension basin sequences in the northern Western Foothills: A key point in study of Hsüehshan Range stratigraphy (in Chinese). Central Geol Surv Spec Publ, 2009, 22: 47–62Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Huang C Y, Chi W R, Yan Y, et al., The first record of Eocene sequence in a marine Paleogene rifting basin near Nantou, Western Foothills, central Taiwan. J Asian Earth Sci, 2012Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Huang C Y, Chi W R, Liew P M, et al. Significance of indigenous Eocene larger foraminifers Discocyclina dispansa in Western Foothills, central Taiwan: A Paleogene marine rifting basin in Chinese continental margin. J Asian Earth Sci, 2012Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Ho C S, Tsan S F. Tan, L. P. Geology and coal deposit of the Chichitashan area, Nantou, Taiwan. Geol Surv Taiwan Bull, 1956, 9: 1–80Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Ho, CS. Correlation of the Takeng Formation and some related stratigraphic principles. Proc Geo. Soc Chin, 1961,4: 61–71Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Huang C Y, Cheng Y M. Oligocene and Miocene planktic foraminiferal biostratigraphy of northern Taiwan. Proc Geol Soc China, 1983, 26: 21–56Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Huang C Y. Oligocene and Miocene stratigraphy of the Kuohsing area, central Taiwan. Acta Geol Taiwan, 1986, 24: 281–318Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Huang T C. Calcareous nannoplankton, paleoenvironment, age and correlation of the Upper Wulai Group and the Lower Hsichih Group (Oligocene to Miocene) in northern Taiwan. Proc Geol Soc China, 1978, 21: 128–150Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Huang T C, Ting J S. Calcareous nannofossils succession from the Oligo-Miocene Peikangchi section and revised stratigraphic correlation between northern and central Taiwan. Proc Geol Soc Chin, 1979, 22: 105–120Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Chang L S. Tertiary biostratigraphy of Taiwan. Geol Paleontol SE Asia, 1975, 15: 337–361Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Chang L S. A biostratigraphic study of the Oligocene in northern Taiwan based on smaller foraminifera. Proc Geol Soc Chin, 1962, 5: 47–52Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Huang T C. Calcareous nannoplanktons stratigraphy of the Upper Wulai Group (Oligocene) in northern Taiwan. Petrol Geol Taiwan, 1977, 14: 147–179Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Huang C Y, Micropaleontology study and stratigraphic correlation in northern Hsüehshan Range, Taiwan (I) (in Chinese). Central Geol Surv MOEA, 2008, 1–31Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    Huang C Y, Micropaleontology study and stratigraphic correlation in northern Hsüehshan Range, Taiwan (I). Central Geol Surv MOEA, 2008, 1–31 (in Chinese, unpublished)Google Scholar
  33. 33.
    Kanno S, Chung C T, Tertiary formations and their molluscan faunas from the Central Rang and foothill areas of northern Taiwan. Contri Geol Paleont SE Asia, 1975, 15: 363–391Google Scholar
  34. 34.
    Huang C Y, Micropaleontology study and stratigraphic correlation in northern Hsüehshan Range, Taiwan (II) (in Chinese). Central Geol Surv MOEA, 2009, 1–49Google Scholar
  35. 35.
    Fong C K, Huang T, Shea K S. New occurrence of larger Foraminifera in northern Taiwan and its stratigraphic significance. Cent Geol Surv Spec Publ, 1994, 8: 205–212Google Scholar
  36. 36.
    Matsumaru, K. Nummilites junbarensis and Assilina formosensis (late Early to early Middle Eocene) from Taiwan (Formosa). Revue Palébiol Genève, 2005, 24: 551–56Google Scholar
  37. 37.
    Chen M M, Yu N T, Chu H T, Larger foraminifers in the so-called “Meichi Sandstone” of Wujie area, southern Hsuehshan Range (in Chinese). Central Geol Surv Spec Publ, 2009, 22: 227–242Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    Yen T P. The Eocene sandstones in the Hsuehshan Range Terrain, northern Taiwan. Proc Geol Soc Chin, 1973, 16: 97–110Google Scholar
  39. 39.
    Huang T C. A calcareous nannofossils biostratigraphic study of the Assilina-bearing section, Chunkengchi, Nantou. Proc Geol Soc Chin, 1980, 23: 7–15Google Scholar
  40. 40.
    Blow W H. Late Middle Eocene tp Recent planktonic foraminiferal biostratigraphy. In, Bronnimann, P, Renz H H, Eds, Proceedings of the First International Conference on Planktonic Microfossils, 1: 199–421Google Scholar
  41. 41.
    Wade B S, Pearson P N, Berggren W A, et al. Review and revision of Cenozoic tropical planktonic foraminiferal biostratigraphy and calibration to the geomagnetic polarity and astronomical time scale. Earth Sci Rev, 2011, 104: 111–142CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. 42.
    Lee C T, Wang Y, Stratigraphy and structure of the slate terrane near Likuan, southern cross-island highway (in Chinese). Ti-Chih, 1985, 6: 1–20Google Scholar
  43. 43.
    Chang L S. The Lushanian Stage in the Central Range of Taiwan and its fauna In: Takayanagi Y, Saito T, eds. Progress In Micropaleontology. The American Museum of Natural History, New York: Micropaleontology Press, 1976, 27–35Google Scholar
  44. 44.
    Huang T C. Calcareous nannofossils from the Slate Terrane west of Yakou, Southern Cross-Island Highway. Petrol Geol Taiwan, 1980, 17: 59–74Google Scholar
  45. 45.
    Hashimoto W, Matsumaru K. On the Lepidocyclina-bearing limestone exposed at the Southern Cross-Mountain Highway, Taiwan. Geol Paleont SE Asia, 1975, 16: 103–116Google Scholar
  46. 46.
    Chang L S. Eocene/Miocene hiatus and N Conglomerate in the Central Range of Taiwan. Proc Geol Soc Chin, 1972, 15: 93–98Google Scholar
  47. 47.
    Chang L S, Stratigraphy of Taiwan. Quart J Taiwan Bank, 1955, 7: 1–7Google Scholar
  48. 48.
    Pang X, Chen C M, Shi H S, et al., The Pearl River Deep-water Fan System & Petroleum in South China Sea. Beijing: Science Press, 2007. 266Google Scholar
  49. 49.
    Briais A, Patriat P, Tapponnier P. Update interpretation of magnetic anomalies and seafloor spreading stages in the South China Sea: Implication for the Tertiary tectonics of southeast Asia. J Geophys Res, 1993, 98: 6299–6328CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. 50.
    Huang C Y. Late Oligocene benthic foraminiferal assemblages in northern Taiwan: The Second International Symposium on Benthic Foraminifera, Pau, France, 1984, 317–323Google Scholar
  51. 51.
    Huang, T C. A supplementary note on the calcareous nannofossils, age, and correlation of the Wuchihshan Formation. Petrol Geol Taiwan, 1979, 16: 85–93Google Scholar
  52. 52.
    Huang C Y. Biometric study of Lepidocyclina in the Kungkuan Tuff of northern Taiwan. Acta Geol Taiwan, 1979, 20: 41–51Google Scholar
  53. 53.
    Haq B U, Hardenbol J, Vail P R. Chronology of fluctuating sea level since the Triassic. Science, 1987, 235: 1156–1167CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. 54.
    Huang, T C. The Oligocene/Miocene boundary in Taiwan. Memoir Geol Soc Chin, 1979, 3: 103–123Google Scholar
  55. 55.
    Miller K G, Fairbank R G, Mountain G S. Tertiary oxygen isotope synthesis, sea level history, and continental marine erosion. Paleoceanology, 1987, 2: 1–19CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. 56.
    Woodruff F, Douglas R G. Response of deep-sea benthic foraminifera to Miocene paleoclimatic events, DSDP Site 289. Mar Micropal, 1981, 6: 617–632CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. 57.
    Huang C Y. Implication of the Post-Lushanian faunal change for the occurrence of Kuroshio Current in the early late Miocene: foraminiferal evidence from the Chuhuangkeng section, northern Taiwan. Proc Geol Soc Chin, 1989, 32: 21–45Google Scholar
  58. 58.
    Chang L S. A biostratigraphic study of the Miocene in western Taiwan based on smaller foraminifera (Part II: benthonics). Bull Geol Surv Taiwan, 1960, 12: 67–91Google Scholar
  59. 59.
    Wang P, Zhang J, Qinbao M. Distribution of foraminifera in surface sediments of the East China Sea. In Wang P. ed. Marine Micropaleontology of China. Berlin: Spring-Verlag, 1985. 34–69Google Scholar
  60. 60.
    Kennett J P, Keller G, Srinivasan M S. Miocene planktonic foraminiferal biogeography and paleoceanographic development of the Indo-Pacific region. Geol Soc Amer Mem, 1985, 163: 197–236Google Scholar
  61. 61.
    Qu T, Girton, J B, Whitehead, J A. Deepwater overflow through Luzon Strait. JGR, 111, CO1002, doi:10.1029/2005JC003139Google Scholar
  62. 62.
    Zachos J, Pagani M, Sloan L, et al. Trends, rhythms, and aberrations in global climate 65 Ma to present. Science, 2001, 292: 686CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. 63.
    Huang C Y, Yuan P B, Tsao S J. Temporal and spatial records of active arc-continent collision in Taiwan: A synthesis. Geol Soc Amer Bull, 2006, 118: 274–288CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. 64.
    Yang T Y, Liu, T K, Chen C H. Thermal event records of the Chimei igneous complex: constraint on the ages of magma activities and the structural implication based on fission track dating. Acta Geol. Taiwan, 1988, 26: 237–246Google Scholar
  65. 65.
    Chang L S, A biostratigraphic study of the Tertiary in the Hengchun Peninsula, Taiwan, based on smaller foraminifera (III: Southern Part). Proc Geol Soc China, 1966, 9: 55–63Google Scholar
  66. 66.
    Huang C Y, Yuan P B, Song S R, et al, Tectonics of short-lived intraarc basins in the arc continent collision terrane of the Coastal Range, eastern Taiwan. Tectonics, 1995, 14: 19–38CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. 67.
    Chang C P, Angelier J, Huang C Y, et al. Structural evolution and significance of a mélange in a collision belt: the Lichi Mélange and the Taiwan arc-continent collision. Geol Maga, 2001, 138: 633–65Google Scholar
  68. 68.
    Huang C Y, Jien C W, Chang C P, et al. The Lichi Mélange: A tectonic collision complex originated form sheared forearc in Coastal Range, eastern Taiwan. Geol Soc Amer Spec Paper, 2008, 436: 127–154Google Scholar
  69. 69.
    Lin Y C, Evolution of Loho remnant forearc basin and significance of the Lichi Mélange in the basin, Coastal Range, eastern Taiwan: Micropaleontology and clay mineral assemblage evidences (in Chinese). Master’s Thesis, Department of Earth Sciences, Cheng Kung University, 2010, 5Google Scholar
  70. 70.
    Huang C Y, Zhao Q, Jian Z. Fluctuations of bottom water paleoceanography of South China Sea linked to tectonic evolution of accretionary prism-Luzon volcanic arc in Taiwan region. AGU Fall Meeting, EOS, OS 54A-03.Google Scholar
  71. 71.
    Malavieille J, Lallemand S E., Dominguez, S, et al. Arc-continent collision in Taiwan: New marine observations and tectonic evolution. Geol Soc Ame, Special Paper, 2002, 358: 187–211Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2012

Open AccessThis article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Authors and Affiliations

  • Chi-Yue Huang
    • 1
    Email author
  • Yi Yen
    • 1
  • QuanHong Zhao
    • 2
  • Chiou-Ting Lin
    • 1
  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Marginal Sea Geology, Guangzhou Institute of GeochemistryChinese Academy of SciencesGuangzhouChina
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory of Marine Geology, School of Ocean and Earth SciencesTongji UniversityShanghaiChina

Personalised recommendations