Thursday, 12 September 2013

Magnitude 4.7 Earthquake beneath Lake Guozha, northwest Tibet.

The United States Geological Survey recorded a Magnitude 4.7 Earthquake at a depth of 34.7 km beneath Lake Guozha, a glacial lake in the remote Kunlun Mountains of northeast Tibet, slightly before 9.30 pm local time (slightly before 1.30 pm GMT) on Wednesday 11 September 2013. Earthquakes of this size at this depth seldom lead to damage or injuries, and given the remote location of this quake, it is unlikely that it was noticed by anyone at all.

The approximate location of the 11 September 2013 Lake Gouzha Earthquake. Google Maps.

The Kunlun Mountains are located to the north of the Himalayas, and form the northern fringe of the Tibetan Plateau. These are ancient mountains formed by uplift and volcanic eruptions during the collision of the ancient continents of Cimmeria and Siberia during the closure of the Palaeotethys Ocean during the Late Triassic, part of the formation of the Pangean Supercontinent. However modern Earthquake activity in the area is caused by the uplift of the Tibetan Plateau, due to the impact of India into Eurasia to the south. he Indian Plate is moving northwards at a rate of 5 cm per year, causing it to impact into Eurasia, which is also moving northward, but only at a rate of 2 cm per year. The collision of the Indian and Eurasian plates has lead to the formation of the Himalayan Mountains, the Tibetan Plateau, and the mountains of southwest China, Central Asia and the Hindu Kush.

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