Sie sind auf Seite 1von 13

CE 1: TECTONIC PROCESSES (EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW!

Earth’s CRUST broken up into huge slabs of rock – TECTONIC Tectonic Plates move VERY slowly
All major EARTHQUAKES and VOLCANOES found at boundaries CONVECTION CURRENTS in Mantle drag plates along
OCEANIC PLATES 5-10km thick heavier
CONTINENTAL PLATES 25-90km thick lighter

Earth split up into 4 layers – CRUST, MANTLE, INNER CORE & OUTER CORE

CONSTRUCTIVE BOUNDARY DESTRUCTIVE BOUNDARY


‘MID-ATLANTIC RIDGE’ (Atlantic Ocean) PACIFIC RING OF FIRE
Plates diverge Plates converge
Mantle rock melts and erupts as lava Crust forced into mantle (subduction)
New crust formed - sea floor grows Oceanic crust melted/destroyed
Undersea ‘Vs’ form mid-ocean ridges Explosive ‘Vs’
Minor EQs as plates move Powerful EQs as plates move

COLLISION BOUNDARY CONSERVATIVE BOUNDARY


HIMALAYAS SAN ANDREAS FAULT
Plates converge Plates move in diff directions/speeds
Plates don’t sink into mantle Plates become locked together
Plates buckle = fold mountains Pressure builds-rock snaps at fault
Powerful EQs – no ‘Vs’ Plates move suddenly – powerful EQs

EQ magnitude (strength) measured using a SEISMOMETER against the RICHTER SCALE


Richter Effects near Epicentre Estimated
Magnitudes Number per Year
<2.0 Generally not felt, but recorded 600 000
2.0-2.9 Potentially noticeable 300 000
3.0-3.9 Felt by some 49 000
4.0-4.9 Felt by most 6 200
5.0-5.9 Damaging shocks 800
6.0-6.9 Destructive in populous regions 266
7.0-7.9 Major earthquakes. Inflict serious damage 18
≥8.0 Great earthquakes. Destroy communities near epicenter 1.4

PRIMARY EFFECTS of Earthquakes (immediately an EQ strikes)


e.g. Buildings collapse, Things fall from buildings, Dams burst

SECONDARY EFFECTS of Earthquakes (problems hours/days after an EQ)


e.g. Fire breaks out, Disease, Water supply cut off, TSUNAMIs

LONG-TERM EFFECTS of Earthquakes (problems years after an EQ)


e.g. Unemployment, Homelessness, Economical & Emotional damage

KOBE EQ (1995 – 7.2) GUJARAT EQ (2001 – 7.9)


Pacific Ring of Fire Nr. Himalayan Plate Boundary
1ry 200 000 buildings collapsed (5 500 dead) 1ry 35million people affected, 1mill buildings collapse
2ry 230 000 homeless 2ry lots of disease, 10 000s fled area
Other Approx 6months to recover from EQ Other $1.3billion damage
NOW HAVE EQ-PROOF BUILDINGS Quakes affected 1 016 villages & 8 urban areas
TECTONIC PLATES

The Earth’s crust is broken into huge slabs of rock called tectonic plates.

These vary in thickness: Oceanic plates are 5km to 10km thick (denser)
Continental plates are 25km to 90km thick (lighter)

Oceanic plates are made from denser rock than continental plates.

The diagram below shows the Global Distribution of the world’s main tectonic plates.

Look at how the world’s major Earthquake zones and Volcanoes are found at the boundaries between plates.
PLATE MOVEMENT

Tectonic plates move very slowly (approximately 2-3cm a year).

1. The core remains hot due to radioactive processes.


2. Heat from the core causes very slow movement in the mantle rocks called Convection currents.
3. Movements in the mantle ‘drag’ the plates along.

See diagram below.


STRUCTURE OF THE EARTH

The Earth is made up of four different layers: CRUST, MANTLE, INNER CORE, OUTER CORE.

See diagram below.

At each part of the Earth’s structure different processes occur


PLATE BOUNDARIES

Plate boundaries, or margins, are the places where two or more tectonic plates meet.

CONSTRUCTIVE BOUNDARY e.g. ‘MID-ATLANTIC RIDGE’ (Atlantic Ocean)


Oceanic plates diverge.
Mantle rock melts and erupts as lava.
New crust is formed and sea floor grows larger.
Undersea volcanoes form mid-ocean ridges.
Minor earthquakes occur as plates move.

DESTRUCTIVE BOUNDARY e.g. ‘PACIFIC RING OF FIRE’ or 'WEST COAST OF SOUTH


AMERICA.’
Oceanic and continental plates converge.
Denser oceanic crust is forced down into the mantle (subduction).
Oceanic crust is melted and destroyed.
Explosive volcanoes are formed.
Powerful earthquakes occur as the plates move.

COLLISION BOUNDARY e.g. HIMALAYAS (Asia)


Continental plates converge.
Plates are not dense enough to sink into the mantle.
Plates buckle and form fold mountains.
There are powerful earthquakes but no volcanic eruptions.

CONSERVATIVE BOUNDARY e.g. SAN ANDREAS FAULT


(West Coast of N.America)
Tectonic plates move in different directions, or at different speeds.
Plates become locked together.
Pressure builds until rock snaps along a fault.
Plates move suddenly, causing powerful earthquakes.
CAUSES OF EARTHQUAKES

Earthquakes occur mainly on plate boundaries that are moving towards, or past, each other

Over many years pressure builds up until eventually the rocks snap along a weak area called the FAULT LINE

The place underground where the rock snaps is the FOCUS

The place at the surface directly above the focus is called the EPICENTRE

The stored energy is released, travelling outwards in SEISMIC WAVES


Seismic Waves are strongest at the epicentre of an earthquake – this is where the most damage is caused
Seismic Waves spread out from the focus like ripples
*AS SEISMIC WAVES TRAVEL OUTWARDS THEY LOSE ENERGY*

THE CLOSER TO THE SURFACE THE FOCUS OF THE EARTHQUAKE IS


THE HIGHER THE MAGNITUDE AND AMOUNT OF DAMAGE
EARTHQUAKE SCALES

RICHTER SCALE

Earthquake magnitude (the strength) is measured using a seismometer and these results are measured against the
Richter Scale.

The scale is logarithmic, each subsequent level is x10 more powerful than the previous.

The scale is continuous (has no end) although nothing above 9.2 has not been recorded on land.

Richter Magnitude Description Number


1 to 3.4 None, only recorded on seismographs Over 100 000 each year
3.5 to 4.2 Feels like the vibrations due to a passing lorry. Noticed
by people at rest
4.3 to 4.8 Noticed by everyone. Loose objects rocked, sleepers
woken up and church bells ring.
4.9 to 5.4 Trees sway, loose objects fall. Some damage. Walls
crack, plaster falls. General alarm
5.5 to 6.1 About 100 each year
6.2 to 6.9 Some buildings collapse. Chimneys fall. Pipes break.
Ground fissured or cracked.
7.0 to 7.3 Ground cracks badly. Buildings destroyed. Railways lines 14/15 each year
bent. Landslides.
7.4 to 8.1 Only few buildings withstand shock, bridges destroyed.
All pipes and cables broken, landslides, floods.
Over 8.1 Countryside devastated. Total destruction. 1 every 4 or 5 years

Richter Magnitudes Effects near Epicentre Estimated Number per Year


<2.0 Generally not felt, but recorded 600 000
2.0-2.9 Potentially noticeable 300 000
3.0-3.9 Felt by some 49 000
4.0-4.9 Felt by most 6 200
5.0-5.9 Damaging shocks 800
6.0-6.9 Destructive in populous regions 266
7.0-7.9 Major earthquakes. Inflict serious damage 18
≥8.0 Great earthquakes. Destroy communities near epicenter 1.4

MERCALLI SCALE

The effects of earthquake hazards can be also be measured on a scale.

The Mercalli Scale measures damage caused. It is a descriptive scale ranging from 1 (rarely felt) to 12 (total devastation).

No Effects
1 Detected only by instruments
2 Slight vibrations, hardly noticed
3 Slight vibrations, noticed by people not moving
4 Moderate, felt by people moving about
5 Quite strong, loose objects fall over
6 Strong, slight damage to buildings
7 Very strong, walls crack
8 Destructive, chimneys fall
9 Ruinous, buildings collapse
10 Disastrous, many buildings destroyed
11 Very disastrous, few buildings left standing
12 Catastrophic, total destruction
EARTHQUAKES: PREDICTION & PREPARATION

PREDICTION

EARTHQUAKES are very hard to predict

Scientists can search for CLUES: changes in well water levels


gas emissions
cracks appearing in rocks
even strange animal behaviour!!

Computers can analyse data to forecast future earthquakes BUT they can’t be predicted accurately as they occur UNEXPECTEDLY!

PREPARATION

GOOD PLANNING and PREPARATION reduce the effects of a Tectonic Hazard

EMERGENCY DRILLS are held to practise what to do in the event of an earthquake

INFORMATION on emergency procedures can be made available to the public (e.g. in school classes, pamphlets, newspapers)
sheltering under a table or avoiding standing next to walls can save your life!

EMERGENCY PLANS can be drawn up by the local authorities and government and practised in order to reduce damage, death and
injury
MONITORING helps predict when hazards are coming so people can be warned

FAMILIES can organise supplies of food and water, dust masks, spare clothes, basic medical supplies, shelters, torches,
batteries, mobile phones and other useful stuff

EMEGENCY SERVICES such as the Police, Fire Brigade and Ambulance service can be well prepared to deal with any hazard

EMERGENCY SUPPLIES of water and power can be organised in advance

BUILDING & ROAD DESIGNS


can be planned for earth movements so they don’t collapse under the strain
e.g. New SKYSCRAPERS in earthquake zones can be built with a computer controlled counterweight, cross
bracings and special foundations to reduce the impact of an earthquake (SEE BELOW)

STRENGTHENED ROADS & RAILWAYS


can help reduce damage
(sometimes this doesn’t work – in Kobe 1995 – the Bullet Train track bent unexpectedly)
EFFECTS OF EARTHQUAKES

These can be split into different types:

PRIMARY EFFECTS
(Hazards which happen immediately an Earthquake strikes)

8 Buildings collapse, killing and trapping people inside


8 Dams burst
8 Bridges and elevated roads collapse, crushing cars and people
8 Objects such as signs and glass fall from buildings, injuring people below

SECONDARY EFFECTS
(Problems faced in the hours and days after an Earthquake strikes)

8 Fire breaks out from broken pipes


8 Water supply is cut off due to broken water pipes
8 Disease spreads as there is lack of food and clean water
8 Access is difficult: buckled roads and railways, fallen telephone lines make travelling and communicating difficult
8 TSUNAMIs (Sea Waves of up to 30m, travelling at 500km/hour) may occur in coastal areas, where an earthquake has happened
at sea

LONG-TERM EFFECTS
(Problems that can continue for years after the Earthquake)

8 Unemployment where offices and factories were destroyed


8 Homelessness while waiting for homes to be rebuilt
8 Economic damage as the government spends billions on rebuilding
8 Psychological and emotional damage to those involved
PEOPLE LIVING IN TECTONIC AREAS

There are BENEFITS of living in areas which are prone to TECTONIC ACTIVITY

9 Volcanic LAVA and ASH make FERTILE SOILS so people settle and farm nearby

9 Precious MINERALS and FOSSIL FUELS are found in volcanic zones (like GOLD and DIAMONDS)

9 Land is CHEAP in volcanic and earthquake zones and people FEEL SAFER with technological advances like
‘EARTHQUAKE-PROOF’ houses

9 Many TOURISTS (bringing income) come to see features such as GEYSERS and bubbling MUD POOLS (people also believe that
HOT SPRINGS created by Volcanoes improve health)

9 Some people are too POOR to leave their home (especially in LEDCs – also poor education)
Even when people can afford to leave the area they may be ATTACHED TO THEIR HOME (not literally!)

*TRIVIA*
RECENT SCIENTIFIC STUDIES HAVE REPORTED THAT SHED-LOADS OF PEOPLE ARE LIVING IN EARTHQUAKE ZONES - SO
MANY THAT IT WOULD BE A NIGHTMARE TO RE-HOUSE THEM, AND MANY OF THEM DON’T WANT TO LEAVE ANYWAY
TECTONIC HAZARDS IN LEDCs & MEDCs

EARTHQUAKES and VOLCANOES are a nightmare anywhere, but they cause MORE PROBLEMS FOR LEDCs

THREE FACTORS AFFECT HOW SERIOUS THE DISASTER IS

RURAL / URBAN AREAS rural areas have fewer people and buildings so the size of the disaster is smaller

POPULATION DENSITY the more people the more deaths!


e.g. Gujarat EQ 2001 – occurred in a very populated area = 20 000 deaths

HOW PREPARED A COUNTRY IS


this depends on how developed a country is
LEDCs have less time, money and expertise to prepare for hazards
MEDCs are better prepared but they still can’t stop disasters happening – they just limit the damage

**MEDCs can put EMERGENCY PLANS into action** (like the one below!)

1. Local authority EXPERTS assess the seriousness of the situation and the damage

2. Local CITIZENS are kept INFORMED – they need to be reassured and told what to do next

3. IMMEDIATE EMERGENCIES must be dealt with FIRST


All casualties should be taken to hospital and fires must be put out – these are a BIG PROBLEM if gas pipes have been damaged

4. DISRUPTED PUBLIC SERVICES such as power, water supply and sewage disposal must be RESTORED as soon as possible because
there is a risk of DISEASE

5. COMMUNICATIONS such as roads, bridges, railways and telephones may have been damaged and MENDING these is a top
priority so that HELP from outside the area can get in

6. The efforts of INDIVIDUALS, GOVERNMENT and NGOs (Non-Governmental Organisations) such as OXFAM must be
coordinated

7. Once the situation is CLEAR, and there’s NO RISK of a further hazard – LIFE CAN GET BACK TO NORMAL

**LEDCs are NOT so well prepared**

1. Many people in LEDC HAZARD ZONES haven’t been given information about what to do if there is a hazard

2. Some LEDCs DON’T prepare plans – the Government has enough problems already!

3. COMMUNICATION is bad – many people live in SHANTY TOWNS with no proper ACCESS roads and BADLY BUILT housing
which collapses easily causing more injury

**GETTING BACK TO NORMAL TAKES LONGER TOO**

1. There are FEW EXPERTS available to ASSESS the situation

2. WITHOUT PLANS there will be DELAYS dealing with fires, injured people etc

3. BADLY BUILT housing means MORE DAMAGE and allows FIRES and DISEASES to spread quickly

4. LIMITED COMMUNICATIONS mean people still don’t know what’s happening – this means there will only be a few ambulances
and fire engines available

5. WATER and POWER supplies are normally POOR and mending them is difficult

6. ROADS and TRANSPORT SYSTEMS are poor to start with, so it’s DIFFICULT to bring supplies of food, medicine, clothes,
shelter – even if these are available!

7. LACK OF MONEY means they have to rely on FOREIGN AID which takes TIME to reach them

8. MEDICAL FACILITIES are LIMITED so many people die of INJURIES or DISEASE linked to dirty water supply and poor living
conditions
KOBE EARTHQUAKE

The Kobe Earthquake occurred in 1995 and measured 7.2 on the Richter Scale

It happened at 5.46am on 17 January 1995, lasting 20 seconds

During this time the ground moved 18cm horizontally and 12cm vertically

The Earthquake occurred because Japan is at the centre of Destructive Plate Boundaries

WHAT WERE THE EFFECTS OF THE EARTHQUAKE?

PRIMARY EFFECTS Nearly 200 000 buildings collapsed


1km of the elevated Hanshin Expressway and numerous bridges collapsed
130km of the ‘Bullet Train’ route was destroyed
Several trains on minor lines were derailed
120 of 150 quays in the port of Kobe were destroyed

SECONDARY EFFECTS Electricity, gas and water supplies were disrupted


Roads were at gridlock, delaying ambulances and fire-engines
Fires, caused by broken gas pipes and ruptured electricity mains, raged for several days destroying a further
7500 houses
An estimated 230 000 people were made homeless
Industries, including Mitsibushi and Panasonic were forced to close

WHAT HAPPENED IN THE MONTHS AFTER THE EARTHQUAKE?


Kobe’s infrastructure, including water, electricity, gas and telephone services were not fully operational until
July
All rail services were back to normal by August
Most commercial buildings were rebuilt
One year later the port of Kobe was 80% operational
Replacement buildings had to meet stronger earthquake-resistance standards
There was an increase in the number of seismic instruments to record earth movements in the region

FINAL FIGURES FOR THE ‘KOBE EARTHQUAKE’


Death Toll 5500
Injured 40 000
Houses destroyed 180 000

The Kansai International Airport and Akashi Bridge were both undamaged – presumably due to their high-tech construction aimed at
withstanding earthquakes
GUJARAT EARTHQUAKE

The Gujarat Earthquake occurred in 2001 and measured 7.9 on the Richter Scale

It happened at 8.46 (IST) on 26 January 2001, lasting 20 seconds

The earthquake occurred in north-western India


The epicentre was close to the small desert town of Bhuj in the north-western state of Gujarat

India lies on a collision margin. The Indo-Australian and the Eurasian Plate collide into each other at the rate of around 2cm per year

As neither plate can subduct (both plates are continental) the land where the two plates meet is forced upwards
(This process has formed the Himalayas)

As the two continental plates move towards ach other pressure builds up. Eventually this pressure is released – this caused the earthquake
in India

WHAT WERE THE EFFECTS OF THE EARTHQUAKE?

PRIMARY EFFECTS At least 21 000 people killed (a further 18 in Pakistan!)


Initial figures suggested approx. 200 000 people injured
350 000 buildings destroyed and 750 000 damaged
400 school children and their teachers were covered by tons of falling masonry
35million people were affected in India
More than 50 high-rise buildings collapsed close to the epicentre

SECONDARY EFFECTS An estimated 1 000 000 people were made homeless and in need of immediate relief including water, food,
shelter and protection from disease
After the initial Earthquake 1000s slept in the open air (for fear of being caught in collapsing buildings) –
danger of exposure
Quake victims were all vulnerable to diseases (typhoid, cholera and gastroenteritis)
Many hospitals were destroyed – patients treated in the open air (desperate need for beds and medical
supplies for the wounded)
Gas pipelines, power supply stations, phone lines and water services were SEVERELY affected
10s of 1000s of people fled Gujarat as aftershocks continued
Approx 350 aftershocks, the largest measuring 6.0

WHAT HAPPENED IN THE MONTHS AFTER THE EARTHQUAKE?


Extensive infrastructure and material damage – estimates at $1.3billion
Quakes affected 1 016 villages and 8 major built-up areas

FINAL FIGURES FOR THE ‘GUJARAT EARTHQUAKE’


Death Toll 30 000
Injured 55 000
Homeless over 1 000 000
Cost £2.2billion (estimated)