Story: Sea floor geology

Subduction under the North Island

Subduction under the North Island

This east–west cross-section through the central part of the North Island illustrates how the Pacific Plate descends (subducts) beneath the Australian Plate acts rather like a bulldozer's blade, and the sediments on top of the Pacific Plate are scraped off and crumpled, forming the hills of the Wairarapa and Hawke's Bay.

Using this item

GNS Science

Permission of GNS Science must be obtained before any use of this image.

Source: Ray Wood and others, New Zealand’s continental shelf and UNCLOS Article 76. Lower Hutt: Institute of Geological and Nuclear Sciences; Wellington: National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research, 2003

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Keith Lewis, Scott D. Nodder and Lionel Carter, 'Sea floor geology - Continental slopes, canyons and landslides', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/diagram/5603/subduction-under-the-north-island (accessed 21 October 2021)

Story by Keith Lewis, Scott D. Nodder and Lionel Carter, published 12 Jun 2006