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Palaeoenvironmental response to the ∼74 ka Toba ash-fall in the Jurreru and Middle Son valleys in southern and north-central India

  • Sacha Claire Jones (a1)


Distal deposits of rhyolitic volcanic ash from the ∼74 ka "supervolcanic" eruption of Toba, in northern Sumatra, are preserved in numerous river valleys across peninsular India. The Toba eruption is hypothesized to have resulted in climate change and the devastation of ecosystems and hominin populations. This study reports the results of the analysis of sediments and stratigraphical sequences from sites in the Jurreru and Middle Son valleys in southern and north-central India. The aim of the study is to determine the extent of palaeoenvironmental change in both valleys as a result of the ash-fall. Inferences based on evidence from the Jurreru valley are more detailed, where pre- and post-Toba palaeoenvironmental changes are divided into seven phases. The results indicate that ash-fall deposits in both valleys underwent several phases of reworking that possibly lasted for several years, indicating that ash was mobile in the landscape for a considerable period of time prior to burial. This could have enhanced and lengthened the detrimental effects of the ash on vegetation and water sources, as well as animal and hominin populations.


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Palaeoenvironmental response to the ∼74 ka Toba ash-fall in the Jurreru and Middle Son valleys in southern and north-central India

  • Sacha Claire Jones (a1)


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