Abstract

High concentrations of fine-grained and probably wind-blown quartz with an Australian provenance have been mapped in Holocene sediments in the southwest Pacific. During the last glacial maximum a narrow zone of high eolian input, as reflected in a higher abundance of quartz, extended more than 20° longitude farther east than today. This zone, which was significantly farther north than at present, is centered around lat 30° S but curves around the northern tip of New Zealand. These quartz distributions imply that the westerly winds that blew the airborne quartz over the southwest Pacific had shifted considerably to the north under the influence of intensified atmospheric circulation during the last glacial maximum.

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