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Geochemists have long recognized a correlation between rates of physical denudation and chemical weathering. What underlies this correlation? The Critical Zone can be considered as a feed-through reactor. Downward advance of the weathering front brings unweathered rock into the reactor. Fluids are supplied through precipitation. The reactor is stirred at the top by biological and physical processes. The balance between advance of the weathering front by mechanical and chemical processes and mass loss by denudation fixes the thickness of the Critical Zone reactor. The internal structure of this reactor is controlled by physical processes that create surface area, determine flow paths, and set the residence time of...
The cold deserts of the Colorado Plateau contain numerous geologically and geochemically distinct sedimentary bedrock types. In the area near Canyonlands National Park in Southeastern Utah, geochemical variation in geologic substrates is related to the depositional environment with higher concentrations of Fe, Al, P, K, and Mg in sediments deposited in alluvial or marine environments and lower concentrations in bedrock derived from eolian sand dunes. Availability of soil nutrients to vegetation is also controlled by the formation of secondary minerals, particularly for P and Ca availability, which, in some geologic settings, appears closely related to variation of CaCO3 and Ca-phosphates in soils. However, the results...

map background search result map search result map Controls of Bedrock Geochemistry on Soil and Plant Nutrients in Southeastern Utah Controls of Bedrock Geochemistry on Soil and Plant Nutrients in Southeastern Utah