The Morocco segment of the Central Atlantic passive continental margin experienced km-scale exhumation during the early post-rift (late Jurassic-Early Cretaceous). In the Meseta and the High Atlas this led to the development of a N-S trending ridge sourcing terrigenous sediments which were brought to the Atlantic sea via wide rivers flowing on fairly flat plains. In correspondence with the W termination of the High Atlas, waters were deeper and no terrigenous sediments are found in the Lower Cretaceous. South of the High Atlas, exhumation followed a different pattern and led to the formation of a WSW-ENE striking topgraphic high which formed the first order divide of the region. Coeval sediments along the coast are sands to conglomerates deposited mainly in fluvial systems.

The source-to-sink approach helps in predicting offshore distribution and characteristics of the sand bodies which form one of the most interesting reservoirs along the coast of NW Africa


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


  1. Bertotti, G., Gouiza, M.
    , 2012. Post-rift vertical movements and horizontal deformations in the eastern margin of the Central Atlantic: Middle Jurassic to Early Cretaceous evolution of Morocco. Int. J. Earth Sci.101, 2151–2165. doi:10.1007/s00531‑012‑0773‑4
    https://doi.org/10.1007/s00531-012-0773-4 [Google Scholar]
  2. Davison, I.
    , 2005. Central Atlantic margin basins of North West Africa: Geology and hydrocarbon potential (Morocco to Guinea). J. African Earth Sci.43, 254–274.
    [Google Scholar]
  3. De Lamotte, D.F., Leturmy, P., Missenard, Y., Khomsi, S., Ruiz, G., Saddiqi, O., Guillocheau, F., Michard, A.
    , 2009. Mesozoic and Cenozoic vertical movements in the Atlas system (Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia): An overview. Tectonophysics475, 9–28. doi:10.1016/j.tecto.2008.10.024
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tecto.2008.10.024 [Google Scholar]
  4. Ghorbal, B., Bertotti, G., Foeken, J., Andriessen, P.
    , 2008. Unexpected Jurassic to Neogene vertical movements in “stable” parts of NW Africa revealed by low temperature geochronology. Terra Nov.20, 355–363. doi: 10.1111/j.1365‑3121.2008.00828.x
    https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-3121.2008.00828.x [Google Scholar]
  5. Hafid, M.
    , 2000. Triassic-early Liassic extensional systems and their Tertiary inversion\ Essaouira Basin “Morocco.”Mar. Pet. Geol.17, 409–429.
    [Google Scholar]
  6. Ruiz, G.M.H., Sebti, S., Negro, F., Saddiqi, O., Frizon de Lamotte, D., Stockli, D., Foeken, J., Stuart, F., Barbarand, J., Schaer, J.-P.
    , 2011. From central Atlantic continental rift to Neogene uplift – western Anti-Atlas (Morocco). Terra Nov.23, 35–41. doi: 10.1111/j.1365‑3121.2010.00980.x
    https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-3121.2010.00980.x [Google Scholar]
  7. Sebti, S., Saddiqi, O., El Haimer, F.Z., Michard, A., Ruiz, G., Bousquet, R., Baidder, L., Frizon de Lamotte, D.
    , 2009. Vertical movements at the fringe of the West African Craton: First zircon fission track datings from the Anti-Atlas Precambrian basement, Morocco. Comptes Rendus Geosci.341, 71–77. doi: 10.1016/j.crte.2008.11.006
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.crte.2008.11.006 [Google Scholar]
  8. Sehrt, D.M.
    , 2014. Variscan to Neogene long-term landscape evolution at the Moroccan passive continental margin (Tarfaya Basin and western Anti-Atlas). Ruprecht-Karls University Heidelberg.
    [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error