Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems

Chemical weathering on the North Island of New Zealand: CO2 consumption and fluxes of Sr and Os

Authors

  • Tim Blazina,

    1. Radiogenic Isotope Geochemistry Laboratory, Department of Earth Sciences, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA
    2. Now at Department of Water Resources and Drinking Water, Eawag: Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology, Dübendorf, Zurich, Switzerland
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  • Mukul Sharma

    Corresponding author
    1. Radiogenic Isotope Geochemistry Laboratory, Department of Earth Sciences, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, USA
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Abstract

[1] We present Os and Sr isotope ratios and Os, Sr and major/trace element concentrations for river waters, spring waters and rains on the North Island of New Zealand. The Os and Sr data are used to examine whether the NINZ is a significant contributor of unradiogenic Os and Sr to the oceans. Major element chemistry is used to quantify weathering and CO2 consumption rates on the island to investigate relationships between these processes and Os and Sr behavior. Chemical erosion rates and CO2 consumption rates across the island range from 44 to 555 km−2 yr−1 and 95 to 1900 × 103 mol CO2 km−2 yr−1, respectively. Strontium flux for the island range from 177 to 16,100 mol km−2 yr−1 and the rivers have an average flux normalized 87Sr/86Sr ratio of 0.7075. In agreement with the previous studies these findings provide further evidence that weathering of arc terrains contributes a disproportionally large amount of Sr to the oceans and consumes very large amounts of CO2 annually compared to their areal extent. However, the 87Sr/86Sr from the NINZ is not particularly unradiogenic and it is likely not contributing significant amounts of unradiogenic Sr to the oceans. Repeated Os analyses and bottle leaching experiments revealed extensive and variable sample contamination by Os leaching from rigorously precleaned LDPE bottles. An upper bound on the flux of Os from NINZ can nevertheless be assessed and indicates that island arcs cannot provide significant amounts of unradiogenic Os to the oceans.