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The Southern Alps of New Zealand: An Integrated Picture of an Evolving Plate Boundary
Presented by Phaedra Upton, Senior Scientist, Geodynamics Team Leader, GNS Science
The Southern Alps of New Zealand – An integrated picture of an evolving plate boundary
The central South Island has long been a favourite site to study and model oblique continental collision, because the orogen is young, narrow, and a single structure, the Alpine Fault, takes up >70% of relative plate motion. The orogen is highly asymmetric and varies along strike as the nature of the two colliding plates change along the boundary. I will explore the 3D structure and kinematics of the orogen, and discuss how regional deep-seated tectonic processes of mountain building are geodynamically interconnected with climate, landscape, and near-surface geological processes that create local fluid flow, effective stress, and temperature anomalies.