Recycling of Graphite During Himalayan Erosion: A Geological Stabilization of Carbon in the Crust

  title={Recycling of Graphite During Himalayan Erosion: A Geological Stabilization of Carbon in the Crust},
  author={Valier V. Galy and Olivier Beyssac and Christian France‐Lanord and Timothy I. Eglinton},
  pages={943 - 945}
At geological time scales, the role of continental erosion in the organic carbon (OC) cycle is determined by the balance between recent OC burial and petrogenic OC oxidation. Evaluating its net effect on the concentration of carbon dioxide and dioxygen in the atmosphere requires the fate of petrogenic OC to be assessed. Here, we report a multiscale (nanometer to micrometer) structural characterization of petrogenic OC in the Himalayan system. We show that graphitic carbon is preserved and… 
Geological respiration of a mountain belt revealed by the trace element rhenium
Oxidation of petrogenic organic carbon in the Amazon floodplain as a source of atmospheric CO2
The two long-term sources of atmospheric carbon are CO2 degassing from metamorphic and volcanic activity, and oxidation of organic carbon (OC) contained in sedimentary rocks, or petrogenic organic
On the geological and scientific legacy of petrogenic organic carbon
Weathering, erosion, and redeposition of exhumed rock-derived or “petrogenic” organic carbon (OC) co-occurs with the burial of biospheric OC within sediments, modulating atmospheric CO2 and O2 over
Molecular and isotopic composition of modern soils derived from kerogen-rich bedrock and implications for the global C cycle
Ancient sedimentary organic matter (kerogen) represents the largest terrestrial organic carbon (OC) reservoir on earth and is vulnerable to remineralization upon exposure to earth’s atmosphere during
Organic Carbon Cycling During Himalayan Erosion: Processes, Fluxes and Consequences for the Global Carbon Cycle
The net effect of organic carbon cycling during continental erosion depends on the balance between rock-derived organic carbon oxidation and ­biospheric organic carbon burial in sediments. Himalayan
Redox constraints on a Cenozoic imbalance in the organic carbon cycle
  • M. Galvez
  • Environmental Science, Geology
    American Journal of Science
  • 2020
Over geological timescales, variations in atmospheric O2 are typically attributed to the imbalance between the weathering of organic carbon (OC) and reduced sulfur on land, the major sink terms for
The oxidative weathering of organic matter and its carbon dioxide emissions : insight from the trace elements rhenium and molybdenum
  • K. Horan
  • Environmental Science, Geology
  • 2018
Throughout geological history, the exposure of sedimentary rocks to chemical weathering at Earth’s surface has profoundly affected the geochemistry of the atmosphere, rivers and oceans. Oxidative
Glaciological window into the pace of the organic carbon cycle
The glaciological record of atmospheric composition suggests O2 has declined over the last 800000 years at an average rate of 0.3 x 1012 mol (Tmol) O2 yr-1. Because the geological carbon cycle
Sulphide oxidation and carbonate dissolution as a source of CO2 over geological timescales
It is shown that enhanced sulphide oxidation coupled to carbonate dissolution can provide a transient source of CO2 to Earth’s atmosphere that is relevant over geological timescales and should be considered a potentially important but as yet generally unrecognized component of the long-term carbon cycle.


Efficient organic carbon burial in the Bengal fan sustained by the Himalayan erosional system
This work presents a comprehensive organic carbon budget for the Himalayan erosional system, including source rocks, river sediments and marine sediments buried in the Bengal fan and indicates that 70 to 85 per cent of the organic carbon is recent organic matter captured during transport, which serves as a net sink for atmospheric carbon dioxide.
Reburial of fossil organic carbon in marine sediments
St isotopic analyses to graphitic black carbon samples isolated from pre-industrial marine and terrestrial sediments find that this material is terrestrially derived and almost entirely depleted of radiocarbon, suggesting that it is graphite weathered from rocks, rather than a combustion product.
Organic carbon burial forcing of the carbon cycle from Himalayan erosion
Weathering and erosion can affect the long-term ocean–atmosphere budget of carbon dioxide both through the consumption of carbonic acid during silicate weathering and through changes in the
Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Levels Over Phanerozoic Time
  • R. Berner
  • Environmental Science, Geography
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The model results correspond to independently deduced Phanerozoic paleoclimates and support the notion that the atmospheric CO2 greenhouse mechanism is a major control on climate over very long time scales.
Burial of terrestrial organic matter in marine sediments: A re‐assessment
Calculations based on recent observations indicate that approximately one third of the organic matter presently being buried in marine sediments may be of terrestrial origin, with the majority of
The carbon cycle and associated redox processes through time
  • J. Hayes, J. Waldbauer
  • Environmental Science, Geology
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2006
Elevated abundances of 13C in carbonate minerals ca 2.3 Gyr old are here interpreted as indicating the importance of methanogenic bacteria in sediments rather than increased burial of organic carbon.
Higher erosion rates in the Himalaya: Geochemical constraints on riverine fluxes
The modern erosion rate of continental-scale mountains is difficult to estimate and is usually based on measurement of the suspended load flux of rivers combined with assumptions about river bedload
Kerogen Recycling in the Ross Sea, Antarctica
It is suggested that up to 90 percent of the organic matter in Ross Sea sediments is derived from the igneous and ancient metamorphic and sedimentary rocks that are being glacially eroded on the Antarctic continent and transported seaward.