This paper broadens the description of sedimentary organic matter from the conventional use of coal petrography to include palynological and geochemical sedimentary organic matter. Palynological sedimentary organic matter includes all chemically resistant organic microfossils, such as pollen and spores, dinocysts, microforaminifera (chitinoid-like linings of foraminifera), microscopic algae, charcoal, palynodebris, acritarchs, chitinozoans, and scolecodonts. Geochemical sedimentary organic matter includes organic biomarkers, lipids, and photosynthetic pigments. We provide examples of the use of palynological and geochemical analysis of sedimentary organic matter to understand patterns and impacts of changing climate, fire regimes, hydrologic extremes, water quality, and land change on terrestrial and marine systems through geologic time to provide a long-term perspective to evaluate anthropogenic impacts on the Earth as well as to support forensics investigations.
|Title||Broadening the perspectives of sedimentary organic matter analysis to understand Earth system response to change|
|Authors||Debra A. Willard, Leslie F. Ruppert|
|Publication Subtype||Journal Article|
|Series Title||International Journal of Coal Geology|
|Record Source||USGS Publications Warehouse|
|USGS Organization||Eastern Energy Resources Science Center; Florence Bascom Geoscience Center|