Biostratigraphic correlation based on microfossil datum levels, directly or indirectly tied to the paleomagnetic time scale, provides a high resolution time control for the Miocene in the equatorial and middle latitude North Pacific. Faunal changes and abundance fluctuations of planktic foraminiferal species combined with the oxygen Pacific. Faunal changes and abundance fluctuations of planktic foraminiferal species combined with the oxygen isotope record of foraminifers, reveal the paleoclimatic and paleoceanographic history. The planktic foraminiferal assemblage change in the early Miocene, extinction of Oligocene fauna and rise of a highly diverse Neogene fauna, appears to be related to increased water mass stratification in the world oceans presumably resulting from the establishment of circum-Antarctic circulation. An increase in the siliceous productivity in the eastern equatorial Pacific region between 20 and 18 Ma suggests that the vertical and horizontal circulation was intensified at that time. Climates cooled rapidly during the middle Miocene between 14 and 13 Ma suggesting the growth of a major east Antarctic ice sheet. Paleoclimatic conditions remained generally cool, although oscillating, during the late Miocene. In the late early to middle Miocene faunal provincialism developed between low and middle latitudes, and by late Miocene time a distinct provincialism similar to the present was established. ?? 1981.