Abstract

A quantitative record of the rate and direction of plate convergence around the North Pacific Ocean can be derived by combining information on Northern Hemisphere plate motion as related to hot spots with the details of North Pacific plate evolution. Such a record permits reconstruction of both north-south and east-west components of convergence and shows that the North and east Pacific margins were characterized by convergence rates in excess of 20 cm/yr during the time period between about 80 and 45 Ma. The west Pacific was characterized by north-northwesterly convergence at 15 to 20 cm/yr prior to 80 Ma and by moderate westerly convergence since then.

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