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Examining the case for the use of the Tertiary as a formal period or informal unit

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate

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  • Robert O. B. Knox
  • P. N. Pearson
  • T. L. Barry
  • Dan Condon
  • John Cope
  • A. S. Gale
  • Phil Gibbard
  • A.C. Kerr
  • Mark William Hounslow
  • J.H. Powell
  • P. F. Rawson
  • Alan J. Smith
  • Colin Waters
  • Jan Zalasiewicz
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<mark>Journal publication date</mark>06/2012
<mark>Journal</mark>Proceedings of the Geologists' Association
Issue number3
Volume123
Number of pages4
Pages (from-to)390-393
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

The ‘Tertiary’, omitted from IUGS-approved timescales since 1989, is still in common use. With the recent re-instatement of the Quaternary as a formal unit, the question arises as to whether the Tertiary too should be reinstated as a formal period, with the ‘Paleogene’ and ‘Neogene’ being downgraded to sub-periods. This paper presents arguments for and against this proposal, stemming from discussions by members of the Geological Society Stratigraphy Commission. It is intended to stimulate discussion of the topic in the wider community.