The tempo-spatial development of the Cenozoic Asian aridification across the Eocene-Oligocene and its controlling factors are important scientific topics in Earth Sciences, which are pertinent to regional and global tectonic and climatic events. However, sedimentary rocks preserving the record of aridification during this time from central Asia (ACA) are rare. Here we present a preliminary analysis of sedimentary facies of the lower Paleogene in the northeastern Tajik Basin, which reveals that: the lower part of the studied section is dominated by shallow marine deposits of the Paratethys, the middle part is typical of alternations of eolian dune and fluvial deposits, the upper part is represented by eolian loess-sandy loess (L&SL) like facies, and the top exhibits alternations of fluvial-lacustrine and loess like facies. Based on a chronological framework derived from preliminary magnetostratigraphy, published U-Pb dating of a volcanic ash, and regional litho-stratigraphic correlations, we determine that eolian and L&SL facies accumulated in the northeastern Tajik Basin during the Late Eocene and through most of the Oligocene. These sedimentary units indicate that semi-arid to arid environments of ACA had developed at least since the late Eocene. This initial aridification is closely linked to the westward retreat of the Paratethys that was likely driven by a combination of tectonic activity and sea level changes.
- Eolian deposits
- Northeastern Tajik Basin
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)