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Lecture 4

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Environmental Science
Nick Eyles

Lecture 4 and Quiz Continue Reading Chapters 14 1 MidOcean Ridges Modern and Ancient Ophiolites 2 Transform Faults 3 Iceland Waling Over A MidOcean Ridge 4 Volcanic Activity Under Glaciers Jokulhlaups 5 Geothermal Energyif you understand plate tectonic youll understand themeaning of life This weeks quiz is about what Im going to say today In terms of oceans our expiration of the planets ocean basins oceans just like you and me They start off small and today were going to see them grow mature and the classic example is the Atlantic Ocean Now I choosen the Atlantic because we can go to a place called Iceland and we can walk over the middle of the ocean What we can the midocean ridge Its exposed above sea level dry we can study the volcanoes and we can use this information to see the processes thats going on below the rest of the ocean Figure 22shows the the reverse process at the bottom To put into reverse gear and slowly bring back the continent together until were into Pangea 2 Its about the same time in the future About 150000000 years time Lifecycle of oceans and the Atlantic ocean is a mature oceanWere going to take a close look at midocean ridges How they function Were going to look at modern ridges and theres a term up thereOphiolites which is the name we give to fossil midocean ridges Ancient midocean ridges You can appreciate that oceans are closed Were going to take you to the Himalayas etc And show you what happens when oceans closed next week I can take you to Newfoundland too and much of the islands in Newfoundland is made up of ancient ocean crust which is there because Africa collided with Eastern North America 400 million years ago So in Newfoundland we can walk over these ridges so we see these fossils in the mid ocean ridges we call them ophiolites Then were going to learn about transform faults and then will continue our journey to Iceland where we can walk over a midocean ridge and Ill say a few comments about hazards in Iceland Figure 21 Look at the AtlanticOcean and youll see the North American Plate The Western margin is where What Canadian city sits right on the Western marginVancouver Hence the next big one the big earthquake that will occur if its a matter of when because Vancouver sits right on top of the Cascadia subduction zone where in the Pacific plate have been driven down below North America The active plate margin on the west coast Wheres the opposite plate margin The passive margin of the North American plate is actually along the middle of the Atlantic Ocean That is where the plate is beingcreated pushing all the other plates west So that explains why were on the move And that explains why Vancouver is being driven over the Pacific plate Its pushing the plate west Okay look at the other side of the middle of the Atlantic ocean youll see the Eurasian plateone of the largest plates on the planet thats being pushed eastwardsAgain thats the passive plate margin We call them passive margin not really because we get lots of earthquakes there Fairly shallow fairly small earthquakes So the term passive is not absolutely right But can anybody tell me where the active plate margin is in the Eurasian plate And what we find along its margin Where would you go in Europe to stand on the active plate marginIceland is the passive plate margin The medditeranian is really the boundary between the Europe Eurasian plate and the African plate But what mountains would you go to that recall the tense collision between those two The Alfs And youll see the Alfs about where it says Arabian plate The black line with the teeth and it goes all the way to Turkey So thats a major active plate boundary marked by high mountains So were going to look at that next week
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