Revision of "Falaise de Blanche" (Lower Cretaceous) in Lebanon, with the definition of a Jezzinian Regional Stage

Abstract : The "Falaise de Blanche" is a prominent cliff, consisting mostly of Lower Cretaceous limestones that extends as linear outcrops over most of the Lebanese territory and provides geologists a remarkable reference for stratigraphic studies. However, until now, this unit was lacking a clear definition. We introduce herein the Jezzinian Regional Stage, the type-locality of which is at Jezzine. It equates as an unconformity-bounded unit and, per definition, it is framed by two discontinuities. Because we identified an additional, median sequence-boundary, poorly-expressed in the type-section but better at Aazour, only 4.5 km westward of Jezzine, the new regional stage implicitly spans two sequences. The lithostratigraphic framework being properly redefined, we were able to investigate time-constrained micropaleontological assemblages, consisting mostly of benthic foraminifers and calcareous algae. Typically Southern Tethysian, these assemblages contribute to high-resolution, holostratigraphic correlations with the Persian Gulf area, on the eastern part of the Arabian Plate. The Jezzinian interval correlates with the upper part of the Kharaibian Regional Stage (also known as "Thamama II" reservoir unit in the oil industry). In turn, the Jezzinian is indirectly correlated with the Northern Tethysian Urgonian stratigraphic units where it corresponds to a rather short interval encompassing the standard Barremian - Bedoulian stage boundary. Locally the upper discontinuity is associated to a significant intra-Bedoulian hiatus. The macrofossil assemblages found in the Jezzinian (echinids) and above it (ammonites) support, or at least do not contradict, our micropaleontological dating.
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Sibelle Maksoud, Bruno Granier, Dany Azar, Raymond Gèze, Jean-Claude Paicheler, et al.. Revision of "Falaise de Blanche" (Lower Cretaceous) in Lebanon, with the definition of a Jezzinian Regional Stage. Carnets de Geologie, Carnets de Geologie, 2014, 14 (18), pp.401-427. ⟨http://paleopolis.rediris.es/cg/1418/index.html⟩. ⟨10.4267/2042/54359⟩. ⟨hal-01133577⟩

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