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Marturano, A., Aiello, G., Barra, D.

Evidence for Late Pleistocene uplift at the Somma-Vesuvius apron near Pompeii

Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, 202: 211–227, 2011

doi: 10.1016/j.jvolgeores.2011.02.010


carta-geologica-schematica-del-somma-vesuvio-300x244Detailed stratigraphic and micropalaeontological analyses of samples from boreholes at the Somma-Vesuvius apron, between Pompeii and the sea, allowed reconstruction of Late Quaternary palaeoenvironmental evolution of the Sarno coastal plain. In all, 116 samples were recovered from seven boreholes drilled from 2–10 m a.s.l. to 16.5–26 m b.s.l. Microfossil assemblages, with special regard to benthic foraminifers and ostracods, were used to reconstruct the depositional palaeoenvironment. Fossil remains show that all the pre-79 AD fossiliferous sediments from 2 to 24 m a.s.l. were deposited in shallow marine waters for a long time despite an appreciable sea level rise. The data indicate alternation of both shallow marine and subaerial conditions during the last ~15 kyr, evidencing ground uplift of the area of about 75 mat a rate of ~5 mm/year. Marine sediment accumulation (~6 m/kyr) and tectonic uplift long offset the sea level rise, and as a consequence, submerged areas remained the same as well.