• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

A knowledge of plate tectonics does not just help in understanding many geographical processes and features but also in managing them. How far do you agree with this view?

Extracts from this document...


A2 Geography Essay A knowledge of plate tectonics does not just help in understanding many geographical processes and features but also in managing them. How far do you agree with this view? Plate tectonics helps us to understand three main things; the distribution of the worlds major landforms, where natural hazards such as volcanoes and earthquakes can strike, and the distribution of minerals and energy supplies. There are at seven main plates composed of the narrow crust that forms the outer shell or limosphere of the Earth. All of these plates are in continuous motion moving in different directions. This is continental drift and can be proven by fossil evidence, structure of continents and climatic change. This causes to plates to meet. Plate margins are the points at which the plates meet. There are three different types of these, each formed by a different process and each causing a different feature. The Constructive plate margin is located where two plates are moving apart. As they separate magma rises into the gap formed and creates new land. One example of this is the mid - Atlantic ridge which was formed as the American plate and the Eurasian plate moved away from each other, pulled by diverging convection currents in the upper mantle. ...read more.


Rebuilding of cities, businesses and lives takes years, and it is unknown that if when they finish the restoration, another earthquake might hit again. People still build settlements and take homes in areas of great danger, whether next to a volcano or on a high-risk earthquake area. This is because of the economic value of such a dangerous place; in time volcanic rocks produce highly fertile soil. This is extremely good for agriculture and brings the people an income. These areas often offer beautiful scenery; this has a great impact on tourism in an area. Many people still visit the yellow sand national park. Mineral wealth and geothermal energy is of great availability, for example hot water from geysers. The conservative plate margin that receives the most publicity and greatest scientific study is in California. The north American plate is almost completely still, however the pacific plate is moving in a north westwards direction by 10cm a year. The largest and best-known fault here is the San Andreas. In 1089 the Loma Prieta earthquake suffered a great loss of life. However California and areas like it, which have frequent earthquakes, have ideal climate, perfect soils and plenty of resources. ...read more.


Dust and ash in the atmosphere, intercepting the light from the sun was thought to reduce the global temperatures for 5 years. However, after all of this devastation, only 500 people died altogether. This was due to accurate forecasting which enabled the area for 15 miles to be evacuated. As magma rises up into and through the volcanic zone, there are warning signs, steam and the releases of gases, e.g. hydrogen sulphide. Technology is used to help the prediction, satellites can monitor heat changes, which is of great help to LEDC's that do not have the money to have ground monitoring stations. However earthquakes are harder to predict and the best people can do is prepare, which costs money. This is where LEDC's suffer more when they are hit by a natural disaster. They do not have the money to prepare sufficiently, and then do not have the money to restore afterwards. If we had no knowledge of how plate tectonics, how they work and what features they create, many more people would die when disasters strike, and the world would suffer more economically. By managing these, we cannot prevent an earthquake, volcanic eruption or tsunami from occurring, but we can predict when, and how badly they will occur. ?? ?? ?? ?? Sophie Curtis Essay assignment no1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Hazardous Environments section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Hazardous Environments essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Discuss the degree to which the theory of plate tectonics is supported by seismic ...

    5 star(s)

    This continues until the stress has risen sufficiently to break through the asperity, suddenly allowing sliding over the locked portion of the fault, releasing the stored energy. This energy is released as a combination of seismic waves, frictional heating of the fault surface, and cracking of the rock, resulting in an earthquake.

  2. Chromatography assignment

    These constraints must be taken into account before I begin my method. Task 2 Preparation of analgesics To prepare the analgesics you must do the following: * Take a quarter tablet of your chosen analgesic.

  1. Mount St. Helens - Natural disasters.

    24 hours to those blaming the volcano's restlessness on the desecration of Indian graves in the area. Harry Truman began his climb to media folk-hero status due to extensive coverage in newspapers and television. He is the only person who has refused to leave his home on the south shore of Spirit Lake.

  2. Knowledge of plate tectonics helps us to understand geomorphological processes but has not significantly ...

    However only MEDC's can usually afford the technology for prediction and therefore our knowledge of technology and plate boundaries has not really increased our ability to manage hazards, but it has increased are scope of prediction. Another approach to managing hazards is through prevention, which in theory is ideal as

  1. Discuss the view that geomorphological processes such as weathering, mass movement and those resulting ...

    Although chemical weathering is not only restricted to the tropics and can occur in areas of lower temperatures but not at the same rates as in the tropics. The process of carbonation can create distinctive landscapes and landforms in areas of limestone and these areas usually have poor surface drainage, disappearing surface streams, dry valleys and underground cave systems.

  2. Evaluate how plate tectonics theory helps our understanding of the distribution of seismic and ...

    Here there are active volcanoes, which are unassociated with plate convergence or divergence. Despite this flaw, hot spots can be explained by plate tectonic theory, as the hot spot is stationary, over time, the plate moves over this hotspot, creating an Island arc which includes an active volcano and other extinct own.

  1. To what extent can the theory of plate tectonics explain global distribution of ...

    These hotter areas of mainly liquid magma produce a circulatory motion which causes the plates to move. These currents create high temperatures that cause tensional forces which pull the crust apart at ridges and rift zones. In areas of Continental crust rift valley systems can be made and if rifting

  2. Volcanic and seismic events are major pieces of evidence towards proving that plate-tectonics theory ...

    The paleomagnetic signature of a rock also provides useful information about the location of the Earth?s poles. Just as a free-swinging magnet today will point toward today?s magnetic north polle, so too does a rock?s paleomagnetism act as a pointer toward the Earth?s magnetic north pole at the time of rock formation.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work