Discussion on the genetics and the correlation of river terraces in Taiwan

Quocheng Sung, Mng Tzu Lu, Heng Tsai, Ping Mei Liew

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Abstract

The study on the correlation among eight major river terrace groups was based on the morphological dating method to verify Tomita's correlation scheme (1937). Generally speaking, the Lateritic Terrace (LT) surfaces developed before 30,000 years ago, while the Fluvial Terrace (FT) surfaces have formed within 30,000 B.P.. Tomita's correlation scheme of river terraces may be plausible on the regional scale but not on those in the Chao-chou Fan Terraces, which have younger and low-elevated LT surfaces. The relative height and the presence of lateritic soil on the coverage of river terraces could not have played a major role in the correlation scheme. The time period and the conditions for lateritization in Taiwan remain to be studied. The main factors affecting the development of river terraces also include tectonism, eustatic change and climatic changes. Local tectonic activity plays a principal role in the evolvement of the relative height and the number of levels of river terraces. The dissection of most LT(I) surfaces can be attributed to the decrease in the global sealevel around 30,000 B.P.. As a result, climatic change has caused the formation of the FT surfaces in different regions of Taiwan since the last glacial in spite of drastic eustatic changes. Above all, the complex responses of a river system to tectonism, eustasy and climate have controlled the timing of the formation of river terraces in different regions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)31-45
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of the Geological Society of China
Volume40
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1997 Jan 1

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geology

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