A possible coseismic landslide origin of late Holocene moraines of the Southern Alps, New Zealand

Stuart Larsen, T Davies, M McSaveney

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Abstract

Moraine deposits of the Southern Alps, New Zealand, have been used to infer past climatic regimes, such as the Little Ice Age . Recent work has identified four major movements of the Alpine Fault since AD 1200. These earthquakes are inferred to have produced numerous large rock avalanches, some of which must have fallen onto the valley glaciers, with this debris subsequently deposited as terminal moraines. Evidence is presented which suggests that periods of moraine formation follow each of these major earthquakes. Considerable caution must therefore be exercised in inferring past climatic conditions from the size and location of these terminal moraines. These findings have implications for Southern Hemisphere mid-latitude paleoclimatic reconstruction
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)311 - 314
Number of pages4
JournalNew Zealand Journal of Geology, and Geophysics
Volume48
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2005
Externally publishedYes

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