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Uppermost Cambrian carbon chemostratigraphy: the HERB and undocumented TOCE events are not synonymous

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  16 June 2020

Ed Landing*
New York State Museum, 222 Madison Avenue, Albany, NY12230, USA
Robert L. Ripperdan
Montgomery County Public Schools, Montgomery City, MO63361, USA
Gerd Geyer
Lehrstuhl für Geodynamik und Geomaterialforschung, Institut für Geographie und Geologie, Bayerische Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Am Hubland, D-97074Würzburg, Germany
Author for correspondence: Ed Landing, Email:


Chemostratigraphic units require consistent definitions and unambiguous names. So-called TOCE (Top of Cambrian Excursion) is used as an uppermost Cambrian δ13Ccarb negative excursion although it was proposed without documentation, is ambiguously defined, and variably correlated into four Laurentian trilobite zones. TOCE, a nihilartikel, is regularly substituted to the exclusion of the earlier named, precisely documented and geochronologically older HERB (Hellnmaria-Red Tops Boundary) Event. HERB allows late Cambrian global correlation; its onset is close to the lowest occurrence of the conodont Eoconodontus notchpeakensis at the base of a proposed replacement (Lawsonian Stage) of Cambrian Stage 10. TOCE must be retired from use and abandoned as a synonym of the HERB Event.

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© The Author(s), 2020. Published by Cambridge University Press

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