Journal of Earth Sciences and Geotechnical Engineering

Sea Level Changes in the Mesopotamian Plain and Limits of the Arabian Gulf: A Critical Review

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  • Abstract


    The Mesopotamian Plain is a vast almost flat plain which descends in elevation towards southeast until it reaches the sea level along the Gulf shore. The plain covers the central part of Iraq; it is covered totally by different type of Quaternary sediments. Among those sediments, the fluvial flood plain sediments of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers with their distributaries are the most prevailing. The two river merge together to form the Shatt (River) Al-Arab which drains into the Gulf. The extensions of the Gulf are a matter of debit, especially between two groups of researchers: geologists and archeologists and even within the same group. We have presented different opinions which have dealt with the Gulf extensions, since the beginning of the last century and until most recent studies. From the presented and discussed data, it is clear that there is no clear and sound data which confirms the actual extensions of the Gulf during Holocene and even Late Pleistocene. 


    Keywords: Arabian (Persian) Gulf; Pleistocene; Holocene; Sea level changes.