The AQUA2022 programme consists of four official sessions, and a number of themes.

People, Dust and Late Quaternary Environments – A Memorial Session for Lynda Petherick

This session is seeking presentations in honour of Lynda Petherick. Lynda’s research focussed on aeolian dust analysis, palaeoenvironmental reconstruction and palynological analysis in Australia and New Zealand, with a particularly focus on the giant sand mass region of subtropical eastern Australia and the Gulf of Carpentaria region. She was also an outstanding field scientist and played a key role in the OzIntimate and She-Max projects and we would particularly welcome submissions focussing on eastern Australian late Quaternary environments, Marine Isotope Stages 3 and 2 for Australia and New Zealand and/or interdisciplinary field based Quaternary studies.

Session chairs: Patrick Moss, John Tibby

The past two thousand years of hydroclimate: from mean states to climate extremes

Globally, the 20th and 21st centuries have been characterised by both inter-annual and inter-decadal variability with periods of above and below average rainfall/runoff. The recent climate extremes (droughts, fires and floods) are a cause for major societal concern resulting in the loss of life, catastrophic infrastructure damage and ecological devastation. How frequent are such extremes over the past two millennia and are they captured in the recent geological past? How different are they to changes in mean climate state? We welcome oral talks and poster presentations that quantify hydroclimatic conditions over the past two thousand years using proxy data, observational records, global climate models or the integration of all three.

Session chairs: Tim Cohen, Rachel Rudd, Helen McGregor

New insights into abrupt climate changes, tipping points and major transitions throughout the Quaternary

In this session, we focus on palaeoclimate records or modelling studies that provide new insights into the sequence of events, precise timing, or regional expression of abrupt climate changes or transitions throughout the Quaternary. We welcome submissions across a range of temporal scales, including (but not limited to) millennial-scale climate events, glacial terminations, and the Mid-Pleistocene Transition, from Australasia and beyond.

Session chairs: Ellen Corrick, Helen Bostock

Human-Environment Interactions: A Joint Session for the Australian Archaeological Association and Australasian Quaternary Association

The Australasian region has an expansive history of human occupation and migration over the last 65,000 years. The evolution of climate, environment and landscape over time had the potential to profoundly influence human habitation and social interaction. Notably, there has been extreme climatic and geographic change since the Last Glacial Maximum, after which sea levels rose ~130 m and transformed the landscape. So too, modification of the environment by humans is apparent in many locations, including petroglyphs, evidence of large-scale aquaculture, and charcoal deposits from traditional burning practices. The degree to which human practices may have altered the environment is still being uncovered, although significant changes in land use since European colonisation in Australasia are readily apparent in environmental records. We welcome presentations that discuss the palaeoenvironmental frame of human occupation and activities and highlight the varying interactions between peoples and their environment – including the effects of contact between cultures. This is the first joint session between the Australian Archaeological Association and Australasian Quaternary Association aiming to share knowledge between the archaeological and social sciences with the environmental-focussed Quaternary sciences.

Convenors: Patrick Morrison (AAA) and Caroline Mather (AQUA), The University of Western Australia.