Deep carbon cycles constrained by a large-scale mantle Mg isotope anomaly in eastern China
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Although deep carbon recycling plays an important role in the atmospheric CO2 budget and climate changes through geological time, the precise mechanisms remain poorly understood. Since recycled sedimentary carbonate through plate subduction is the main light-d26Mg reservoir within deep-Earth,Mg isotope variation in mantle-derived melts provides a novel perspective when investigating deep carbon cycling. Here, we show that the Late Cretaceous and Cenozoic continental basalts from 13 regions covering the whole of eastern China have low d26Mg isotopic compositions, while the Early Cretaceous basalts from the same area and the island arc basalts from circum-Pacific subduction zones have mantle-like or heavy Mg isotopic characteristics. Thus, a large-scalemantle low d26Mg anomaly in eastern China has been delineated, suggesting the contribution of sedimentary carbonates recycled into the upper mantle, but limited into the lower mantle. This large-scale spatial and temporal variation of Mg isotopes in the mantle places severe constraints on deep carbon recycling via oceanic subduction.
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