MILANKOVITCH-SCALE GLACIO-EUSTASY RECORDED IN STRATIGRAPHY AND ITS RISING INFLUENCE IN 21ST CENTURY GEOSCIENCE
The importance of shallow marine cyclostratigraphy in 21st century geoscience relates to the development of the Milankovitch-based "Astronomical Time Scale" for Earth history. The Geologic Time Scale 2012 for the Cenozoic and late Mesozoic is calibrated by high-resolution Milankovitch cycles identified in deep-sea sediment derived from marine phytoplankton. By contrast, pre-Jurassic deep-sea sediment prior to the evolution of marine phytoplankton originates from the shallow shelf and near-shore, governed in large part by sea level changes. This has curtailed the reconstruction of Milankovitch cycle sequences from pre-Jurassic marine stratigraphy. Shallow-marine depositional systems are the next research frontier for understanding Milankovitch cycles in pre-Jurassic stratigraphy. This research, which is ongoing and robust with sophisticated analysis and modeling tools at hand, is poised to transform our understanding of ancient glacio-eustasy and climate change, and will extend the Astronomical Time Scale into the Precambrian.