Seafloor spreading, sea level, and ocean chemistry changes



High Cretaceous ocean crust production rates have been causally linked to high global sea level and global CO2 due to increased outgassing. However, recent studies have questioned the empirical basis for high Cretaceous global seafloor spreading rates, high Cretaceous sea level (230–320 m above present), and the relationship between geochemical fluxes and spreading rates.

Although this topic has been discussed at several recent international meetings, there has been little opportunity for the protagonists in the debate of constant versus variable global seafloor spreading rates to interact. However, a group of tectonophysicists, stratigraphers, and geochemists recently met at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey (Piscataway N.J.) to discuss global seafloor spreading changes and their possible relationships to sea level and geochemical variations.