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Passive Margin
A passive margin is the transition between oceanic and continental lithosphere that is not an active plate margin. A passive margin forms by sedimentation above an ancient rift, now marked by transitional lithosphere. Continental rifting creates new ocean basins. Eventually the continental rift forms a mid-ocean ridge and the locus of extension moves away from the continent-ocean boundary. The transition between the continental and oceanic lithosphere that was originally created by rifting is known as a passive margin. Global distribution Passive margins are found at every ocean and continent boundary that is not marked by a strike-slip fault or a subduction zone. Passive margins define the region around the Arctic Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, and western Indian Ocean, and define the entire coasts of Africa, Australia, Greenland, and the Indian Subcontinent. They are also found on the east coast of North America and South America, in Western Europe and most of Antarctica. Northea ...
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Rifting To Spreading Transition
In geology, a rift is a linear zone where the lithosphere is being pulled apart and is an example of extensional tectonics. Typical rift features are a central linear downfaulted depression, called a graben, or more commonly a half-graben with normal faulting and rift-flank uplifts mainly on one side. Where rifts remain above sea level they form a rift valley, which may be filled by water forming a rift lake. The axis of the rift area may contain volcanic rocks, and active volcanism is a part of many, but not all, active rift systems. Major rifts occur along the central axis of most mid-ocean ridges, where new oceanic crust and lithosphere is created along a divergent boundary between two tectonic plates. ''Failed rifts'' are the result of continental rifting that failed to continue to the point of break-up. Typically the transition from rifting to spreading develops at a triple junction where three converging rifts meet over a hotspot. Two of these evolve to the poi ...
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Greenland
Greenland ( kl, Kalaallit Nunaat, ; da, Grønland, ) is an island country in North America that is part of the Kingdom of Denmark. It is located between the Arctic and Atlantic oceans, east of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. Greenland is the world's largest island. It is one of three constituent countries that form the Kingdom of Denmark, along with Denmark and the Faroe Islands; the citizens of these countries are all citizens of Denmark and the European Union. Greenland's capital is Nuuk. Though a part of the continent of North America, Greenland has been politically and culturally associated with Europe (specifically Norway and Denmark, the colonial powers) for more than a millennium, beginning in 986.The Fate of Greenland's Vikings
, by Dale Mackenzie Brown, ''Archaeological Institute of Americ ...
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Pacific Ocean
The Pacific Ocean is the largest and deepest of Earth's five oceanic divisions. It extends from the Arctic Ocean in the north to the Southern Ocean (or, depending on definition, to Antarctica) in the south, and is bounded by the continents of Asia and Oceania in the west and the Americas in the east. At in area (as defined with a southern Antarctic border), this largest division of the World Ocean—and, in turn, the hydrosphere—covers about 46% of Earth's water surface and about 32% of its total surface area, larger than Earth's entire land area combined .Pacific Ocean
. '' Britannica Concise.'' 2008: Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.
The centers of both the
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West Africa
West Africa or Western Africa is the westernmost region of Africa. The United Nations defines Western Africa as the 16 countries of Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo, as well as Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha ( United Kingdom Overseas Territory).Paul R. Masson, Catherine Anne Pattillo, "Monetary union in West Africa (ECOWAS): is it desirable and how could it be achieved?" (Introduction). International Monetary Fund, 2001. The population of West Africa is estimated at about million people as of , and at 381,981,000 as of 2017, of which 189,672,000 are female and 192,309,000 male. The region is demographically and economically one of the fastest growing on the African continent. Early history in West Africa included a number of prominent regional powers that dominated different parts of both the coastal and internal trade netwo ...
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Volcanic Belt
A volcanic belt is a large volcanically active region. Other terms are used for smaller areas of activity, such as volcanic fields. Volcanic belts are found above zones of unusually high temperature () where magma is created by partial melting of solid material in the Earth's crust and upper mantle. These areas usually form along tectonic plate boundaries at depths of . For example, volcanoes in Mexico and western North America are mostly in volcanic belts, such as the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt that extends from west to east across central-southern Mexico and the Northern Cordilleran Volcanic Province in western Canada. The deeply deformed and eroded remnants of ancient volcanic belts are found in volcanically inactive regions such as the Canadian Shield. It contains over 150 volcanic belts (now deformed and eroded down to nearly flat plains) that range from 600 to 1,200 million years old. These are zones of variably metamorphosed mafic to ultramafic volcanic sequences wit ...
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Tectonic Uplift
Tectonic uplift is the geologic uplift of Earth's surface that is attributed to plate tectonics. While isostatic response is important, an increase in the mean elevation of a region can only occur in response to tectonic processes of crustal thickening (such as mountain building events), changes in the density distribution of the crust and underlying mantle, and flexural support due to the bending of rigid lithosphere. Tectonic uplift results in denudation (processes that wear away the earth's surface) by raising buried rocks closer to the surface. This process can redistribute large loads from an elevated region to a topographically lower area as well – thus promoting an isostatic response in the region of denudation (which can cause local bedrock uplift). The timing, magnitude, and rate of denudation can be estimated by geologists using pressure-temperature studies. Crustal thickening Crustal thickening has an upward component of motion and often occurs when continental ...
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Convergent Boundary
A convergent boundary (also known as a destructive boundary) is an area on Earth where two or more lithospheric plates collide. One plate eventually slides beneath the other, a process known as subduction. The subduction zone can be defined by a plane where many earthquakes occur, called the Wadati–Benioff zone. These collisions happen on scales of millions to tens of millions of years and can lead to volcanism, earthquakes, orogenesis, destruction of lithosphere, and deformation. Convergent boundaries occur between oceanic-oceanic lithosphere, oceanic-continental lithosphere, and continental-continental lithosphere. The geologic features related to convergent boundaries vary depending on crust types. Plate tectonics is driven by convection cells in the mantle. Convection cells are the result of heat generated by the radioactive decay of elements in the mantle escaping to the surface and the return of cool materials from the surface to the mantle. These convection cells bring ...
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Plate Tectonics
Plate tectonics (from the la, label=Late Latin, tectonicus, from the grc, τεκτονικός, lit=pertaining to building) is the generally accepted scientific theory that considers the Earth's lithosphere to comprise a number of large tectonic plates which have been slowly moving since about 3.4 billion years ago. The model builds on the concept of ''continental drift'', an idea developed during the first decades of the 20th century. Plate tectonics came to be generally accepted by geoscientists after seafloor spreading was validated in the mid to late 1960s. Earth's lithosphere, which is the rigid outermost shell of the planet (the crust and upper mantle), is broken into seven or eight major plates (depending on how they are defined) and many minor plates or "platelets". Where the plates meet, their relative motion determines the type of plate boundary: '' convergent'', '' divergent'', or ''transform''. Earthquakes, volcanic activity, mountain-building, and oceanic tr ...
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Northeast Asia
Northeast Asia or Northeastern Asia is a geographical subregion of Asia; its northeastern landmass and islands are bounded by the Pacific Ocean. The term Northeast Asia was popularized during the 1930s by American historian and political scientist Robert Kerner. Under Kerner's definition, "Northeast Asia" included the Mongolian Plateau, the Northeast China Plain, the Korean Peninsula, the Japanese archipelago, and the mountainous regions of the Russian Far East, stretching from the Lena River in the west to the Pacific Ocean in the east. Definitions The definition of Northeast Asia is not static but often changes according to the context in which it is discussed. In common usage, the term Northeast Asia typically refers to a region which includes Northeast China (Inner Mongolia and Manchuria). Other countries and territories which make up Northeast Asia are the Russian Far East including the Sea of Okhotsk, Mongolia, Japan, North Korea, and South Korea. Parts or the whole ...
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Antarctica
Antarctica () is Earth's southernmost and least-populated continent. Situated almost entirely south of the Antarctic Circle and surrounded by the Southern Ocean, it contains the geographic South Pole. Antarctica is the fifth-largest continent, being about 40% larger than Europe, and has an area of . Most of Antarctica is covered by the Antarctic ice sheet, with an average thickness of . Antarctica is, on average, the coldest, driest, and windiest of the continents, and it has the highest average elevation. It is mainly a polar desert, with annual precipitation of over along the coast and far less inland. About 70% of the world's freshwater reserves are frozen in Antarctica, which, if melted, would raise global sea levels by almost . Antarctica holds the record for the lowest measured temperature on Earth, . The coastal regions can reach temperatures over in summer. Native species of animals include mites, nematodes, penguins, seals and tardigrades. Where ve ...
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Western Europe
Western Europe is the western region of Europe. The region's countries and territories vary depending on context. The concept of "the West" appeared in Europe in juxtaposition to "the East" and originally applied to the ancient Mediterranean world, the Roman Empire (Western Roman Empire and Eastern Roman Empire), and medieval " Christendom" (Western Christianity and Eastern Christianity). Beginning with the Renaissance and the Age of Discovery, roughly from the 15th century, the concept of ''Europe'' as "the West" slowly became distinguished from and eventually replaced the dominant use of "Christendom" as the preferred endonym within the region. By the Age of Enlightenment and the Industrial Revolution, the concepts of " Eastern Europe" and "Western Europe" were more regularly used. Historical divisions Classical antiquity and medieval origins Prior to the Roman conquest, a large part of Western Europe had adopted the newly developed La Tène culture. As the Roman ...
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