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variable > percent organic carbon

Preferred term

percent organic carbon  


  • Weight percent total organic carbon (TOC) is one of the most commonly used descriptors for both Recent and ancient sediments. It is commonly considered to be approximately proportional to organic carbon accumulation rates and, therefore, a gauge of those rates. Weight percent TOC is also used to judge hydrocarbon source rock potential and primary productivity of the overlying water column.

Broader concept


  • [controlled by ] Tomas Staszevski , 2013-06-08" , "[source of definition ] Doyle, Larry J.; Garrels, Robert M. 1985. What does percent organic carbon in sediments measure? Geo-Marine Letters, Volume 5, Issue 1, pp.51-53

Scope note

  • US LTER controlled vocabulary




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