Dr. Guy Plint
Sedimentology, Stratigraphy and Basin Analysis
Professor & Graduate Chair
D.Phil. Oxford, 1981
Office: BGS 1072
primary research of my group is focused on the Cretaceous rocks of the Western
Canada foreland basin. Fundamentally, we are interested in understanding the
processes (tectonism, eustatic change, sediment supply) that controlled deposition,
erosion and depositional cyclicity. We have access to all public drilling
records (well logs) for the basin, which allows construction of very detailed
stratigraphic cross-sections. We employ an allostratigraphic (sequence
stratigraphic) approach which permits division of the basin fill into genetic
units, related to relative sea-level changes. Mapping of sequence-bounding
surfaces allows isopach maps to be constructed, which reveal the complex
subsidence history of the basin. This approach also permits mapping of facies
belts, and hence regional paleogeography can be reconstructed. The excellent
subsurface stratigraphic framework allows correlation to outcrop on the
periphery of the basin, allowing sedimentological detail from outcrop to be integrated
into the regional picture.
projects have involved both marine and nonmarine units ranging in age from late
Albian to early Campanian. Several projects focused on thick mudstone
successions which, although superficially monotonous, preserve a very detailed
history of tectonic movement of the basin floor. Other studies have revealed
evidence for small scale (~10 m) but high frequency (20-100 ky) relative sea
level oscillations which are most reasonably explained in terms of
glacio-eustasy - despite the popular notion of a mid-Cretaceous ‘greenhouse’
climate. Other studies have examined the relationship between subsidence rate
and the character of alluvial environments, including the nature of fluvial
systems, and paleosols. Major paleovalley and interfluve systems have been
mapped in detail, and drainage patterns can be related to flexural tectonics
and to more localised fault movement.
M.J., Cumbaa, S.L., Murray, A.M. & Plint, A.G. 2007. A new paraclupeid fish
(Clupeomorpha, Ellimmichthyiformes) from a muddy marine prodelta environment:
middle Cenomanian Dunvegan Formation, Alberta, Canada. Canadian Journal of
Earth Sciences, 44, 775-790.
B.S., Varban, B.L., Marfut, K.J. and Plint, A.G. 2007. Blind thrusts and fault-propagation
folds in the Upper Cretaceous Alberta Group, Deep Basin: Implications for
fractured reservoirs. Bulletin of Canadian Petroleum Geology, 55,
A., Plint, A.G. & McNeil, D.H., 2007, Correlation of physical surfaces,
bentonites, and biozones in the Colorado Group from the Alberta Foothills to
South-Western Saskatchewan, and a Revision of the Belle Fourche / Second White
Specks Formational Boundary. Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences, 44,
A.G. & Kreitner, M.A. 2007, Extensive, thin sequences spanning Cretaceous
foredeep suggest high-frequency eustatic control: Late Cenomanian, Western
Canada foreland basin. Geology, 35, 735-738.
B.L. & Plint, A.G., 2008, Palaeoenvironments, palaeogeography, and
physiography of a large, shallow, muddy ramp: Late Cenomanian-Turonian Kaskapau
Formation, Western Canada foreland basin. Sedimentology, 55, 201-233.
B.L. & Plint, A.G. 2008, Sequence stacking patterns in the Western Canada
foredeep: Influence of tectonics, sediment loading and eustasy on deposition of
the Upper Cretaceous Kaskapau and Cardium formations. Sedimentology, 55,
- Roca, X.,
Rylaarsdam, J.R., Zhang, H., Varban, B.L., Sisulak, C.F., Bastedo, K. and
Plint, A.G. 2008, An allostratigraphic correlation of Lower Colorado Group
(Albian) and equivalent strata in Alberta and British Columbia, and Cenomanian
rocks of the Upper Colorado Group in southern Alberta. Bulletin of Canadian
Petroleum Geology, 56, 259-299.
- Hu, Y.G.
and Plint, A.G. 2009, An allostratigraphic correlation of a mudstone-dominated
syn-tectonic wedge: The Puskwaskau Formation (Santonian-Campanian) in outcrop
and subsurface, Western Canada foreland basin. Bulletin of Canadian
Petroleum Geology, 57, 1-33.
A.G., Tyagi, A., Hay, M.J., Varban, B.L., Zhang, H. and Roca, X., 2009,
Clinoforms, paleobathymetry, and mud dispersal across the Western Canada
Cretaceous foreland basin: evidence from the Cenomanian Dunvegan Formation and
contiguous strata. Journal of Sedimentary Research, 79, 144-161.
- Hay, M.J.
and Plint, A.G. 2009, An allostratigraphic framework for a retrogradational
delta complex: the uppermost Dunvegan Formation (Cenomanian) in subsurface and
outcrop, Alberta and British Columbia. Bulletin of Canadian Petroleum
Geology, 57, 323-349.
A.G., 2010, Chapter 8, Wave- and storm-dominated shoreline and shallow marine
systems. In: Facies Models, 4th Edition, Dalrymple, R.W. and James, N.P., eds.
Geological Association of Canada, p. 167-199.
I., Moser, D., Kamo, S. and Plint, A.G., 2011, High-precision ID-TIMS U-Pb
Zircon dating of two transcontinental bentonites: Cenomanian Stage, Western
Canada Foreland Basin. Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences, 48, 543-556.
- Ausich, W.I.,
Buckley, R.A. & Plint, A.G., 2011, Nearshore articulate crinoid from the
Albian of Alberta, Canada (Early Cretaceous, Echinodermata). Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences, 48, 719-727.
A.G., Tyagi, A., McCausland, P.J.A., Krawetz, J.R., Zhang, H., Roca, X., Hu,
Y.G.,, Varban, B.L., Kreitner, M.A. and Hay, M.J., 2012, Dynamic relationship
between subsidence, sedimentation, and unconformities in mid- Cretaceous,
shallow-marine strata of the Western Canada Foreland Basin: Links to
Cordilleran tectonics. In: Busby, C. and Azor, A., (eds.), Recent Advances in
the Tectonics of Sedimentary Basins. Wiley-Blackwell, in Chapter 24, pp.
- Plint, A.G., Macquaker, J.H.S. and Varban, B.L. 2012, Shallow-water,
storm-influenced sedimentation on a distal, muddy ramp: Upper Cretaceous
Kaskapau Formation, Western Canada foreland basin. Journal of Sedimentary Research , 82,
- Mongrain, J.R.,
McCarthy, P.J., Plint, A.G. and Fowell, S.J., 2013 Integrated paleopedology and
palynology from alluvial paleosols of the Cretaceous (Cenomanian) Dunvegan
Formation, Alberta and British Columbia, Canada: paleoenvironmental and
stratigraphic implications. In: New Frontiers in Paleopedology and
Terrestrial Paleoclimatology. SEPM Special Publication, 104, p. 231-255.
- McCarthy, P.J. and Plint, A.G. 2013 A pedostratigraphic approach to
nonmarine sequence stratigraphy: a three-dimensional paleo-landscape model from
the Cenomanian Dunvegan Formation, Alberta and British Columbia, Canada. In: New Frontiers in Paleopedology and
Terrestrial Paleoclimatology. SEPM Special Publication 104, p. 159-177.
- Shank, J.A. and Plint, A.G. 2013,
Allostratigraphy of the Upper Cretaceous Cardium Formation in subsurface and
outcrop in southern Alberta, and correlation to equivalent strata in
northwestern Montana, Bulletin of Canadian Petroleum Geology, 61, 1-40.
- Grifi, M.D., Plint, A.G. and Walaszczyk, I., 2013, Rapidly changing
styles of subsidence revealed by high-resolution mudstone allostratigraphy:
Coniacian of Sweetgrass Arch area, southern Alberta and northern Montana. Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences, 50, p. 439-461.
- Cook, T.D., Wilson, M.V.H., Murray, A.M., Plint, A.G., Newbrey, M.G. and
Everhart, M.J. 2013, A
high-latitude euselachian assemblage from the Early Turonian of Alberta, Canada. Journal of Systematic Paleontology, in
- Plint, A.G., Mud dispersal across a Cretaceous prodelta:
Storm-generated, wave-enhanced sediment gravity flows inferred from mudstone
microtexture and microfacies. Sedimentology, in press.
- Walaszczyk, I., Shank, J.A., Plint, A.G. and
Cobban, W.A., Hiatuses in the lower
Niobrara Formation of the central US Western Interior Basin revealed by
inoceramid faunal succession in the Cardium Formation, Alberta: Implications
for eustatic control on sedimentation. Geological
Society of America, Bulletin, in press.
Sciences 2260a: From Beds to Basins – an Introduction to Sedimentology and
Sciences 4450y: Regional Geology Field School. Ten day field course in Nova
Scotia and New Brunswick.
Sciences 4460a: Clastic and carbonate facies and environments.
9564a/b: Basin Analysis and Sequence Stratigraphy (Graduate course, lectures,
labs, research paper, seminar).
9571a/b: Selected Topics in Sedimentary Geology. (Research paper, seminar)
Omar Al-Mufti, MSc candidate
Piotr Angiel, PhD candidate
El Mahadia Ibrahim Mohammed, PhD candidate
Olivia Henderson, Research Associate
Elizabeth Hooper, PhD candidate
Kienan Marion, BSc Hons thesis
Erica Tso, BSc Hons thesis
Projects available to applicants with appropriate qualifications and experience
- Paleopedology, mineralogy and geochemistry of
sequence-bounding paleosols in Viking-equivalent strata, Alberta
Foothills. PhD. Requires student with background in pedology, clay
mineralogy, low-temperature geochemistry.
- Stratigraphy and sedimentology of the Viking and Bow
Island formations in SW Alberta, subsurface and outcrop. PhD. Requires
student with experience of shallow marine and/or alluvial sediments,
plus interest in working extensive detailed well log correlations.
Field conditions are demanding.