The Andes Case Study

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  • west coast of South America
  • pases through 6 countries  Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Argentina and Chile
  • 7,000km long
  • worlds largest mountain range
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  • Converging of Nazca and south American plates
  • Nazca plate has subducted under the South American plate.
  • Rocks on the South Americam plate have folded and crumpled to create the mountains
  • As it is a destructive plate boundary volcanoes and earthquakes are situated along it.
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Uses: Farming

  • Mainly subsistance farming
  • Main Staple crop is potatoes
  • Soya, maize, rice and cotton are also grown
  • To get the most of th farming terraces have been built on the side of mountains
  • Llamas are used to carry goods and for transportation.
  • Alpacas are also used for this along wiht creating cloth
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Uses: Mining

  • Lots of useful and valuable materials can be found in the Andes.
  • There are large deposits of coal, natural gas, tin, copper, iron ore, silver, phosphates, nitrates and bauxite (aluminium)
  • Most important deposit is gold
  • Yanacocha mine is the biggest open cast gold mine in the world.
  • Cajamarca's (close town) population has gone from 30,000 to 240,00 (2005) since the mine opened.
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Uses: Hyrdoelectic power (HEP)

  • Has deep valleys and rivers
  • some are narrow so can be easily be converted into dams.
  • The Yuncan dam in Peru blocks the rivers Puacartambo and Hauchon.  
  • Most of the water flowing through the river is due to melting of snow (less in winter).
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Uses Tourism

  • Most of Peru's income is though tourism
  • Mainly the Inca trail one of the 23 world heritage sites
  • the trail is 43km of old pathways through old settlements and the mountains
  • The walk is done over 4 days and finishes at Machu Picchu
  • only 500 trecjers can start the trail a day
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