Global Cyclostratigraphy: An Application to the Eocene Green River Basin

  1. P. L. de Boer2 and
  2. D. G. Smith3
  1. M. D. Matthews and
  2. M. A. Perlmutter

Published Online: 29 APR 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9781444304039.ch28

Orbital Forcing and Cyclic Sequences

Orbital Forcing and Cyclic Sequences

How to Cite

Matthews, M. D. and Perlmutter, M. A. (1994) Global Cyclostratigraphy: An Application to the Eocene Green River Basin, in Orbital Forcing and Cyclic Sequences (eds P. L. de Boer and D. G. Smith), Blackwell Publishing Ltd., Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444304039.ch28

Editor Information

  1. 2

    Utrecht, The Netherlands

  2. 3

    London, UK

Author Information

  1. Texaco Exploration and Producing Technology Division, 3901 Briarpark, Houston, TX 77042, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 29 APR 2009
  2. Published Print: 28 JAN 1994

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780632037360

Online ISBN: 9781444304039



  • global cyclostratigraphy - application to Eocene Green River Basin;
  • present global climatic patterns;
  • palaeo global climatic patterns;
  • Milankovitch climatic patterns and sediment flux;
  • Eocene Green River Basin cyclostratigraphy


Global cyclostratigraphy is a process-response model that hindcasts a basin's stratigraphic character by integrating climate and tectonics into a globally synchronous framework. The evolution of depositional environments throughout a basin's history is recreated by superimposing short- to long-term, orbitally driven, climatically controlled stratigraphic variations onto the very long-term, tectonically controlled evolution of basin morphology.

The global nature of this model predicts an interesting difference in the timing of sediment delivery to lacustrine and marine systems in mid-latitudes. In lacustrine systems, runoff and sediment flux are directly linked to lake level. However, in marine systems the phase relationship of runoff and sediment flux to sea level is latitudinally dependent because changes in the sum of worldwide runoff (especially ice storage/melting) affect sea level while changes in local runoff affect sedimentation.

The application of global cyclostratigraphic concepts to the Eocene Green River Basin predicts the general stratigraphic succession and characteristics of the basin. The general evolution of the stratigraphy from fluvial (Wasatch Formation) to lacustrine (Green River Formation) to fluvial (Bridger Formation), and the higher frequency variations within these formations (deep lake–shallow lake, oil shale–trona/marl, braided–meandering rivers) confirm the model's power to infer and provide a context for otherwise conflicting geological observations.