Alpine fault shifts greater than thought

The Alpine Fault running down the middle of the South Island has shifted more than previously thought.

The Alpine FaultNew research from Victoria University Wellington and GNS Science has revealed that the two sides of the fault have shifted 700km relative to each other in the last 25 million years – more than any other known onland fault on Earth.

“I don’t think anybody in their wildest dreams would have thought that displacements on the fault could be so large, and also change direction so dramatically through time,” said author Associate Professor Simon Lamb from Victoria’s School of Geography, Environment and Earth Sciences.

The findings were recently published in the American Geophysical Union journal Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems. You can read more about the research in a media release from Victoria University Wellington.

Coverage of the research includes:

MSN NZ News: Alpine Fault the world’s biggest mover
Otago Daily Times: Massive shift in Alpine Fault
Newshub: South Island’s Alpine Fault has moved more than any other
New Zealand Herald: Research shows big shift in Alpine Fault Alpine Fault moves more than any other known land fault in the world