Restless Earth

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  • Created by: Bananna20
  • Created on: 24-05-16 10:29

Structure of the Earth:

  • Crust - hard outer shell broken into tectonic plates
  • Mantle - soft molten rock -  3800 degrees celsius
  • Outer core - liquid iron and nickel
  • Inner core - solid, cery hot, up to 5500 degrees celsius

Oceanic Crust

  • 5-10km thick
  • dense
  • sinks into mantle when oceanic & continental plates meet
  • oldest is only 180 million years old
  • forms constantly at constructive plate margins 
  • destroyed at destructive plate margins

Continental Crust

  • 25-100km thick
  • less dense
  • doesn't sink
  • very old - 3-4 billion years old
  • new crust isn't formed
  • can't be destroyed

Constructive Plate Boundary

  • plates move apart
  • magma rises to fill in the gaps
  • cooled magma creates new crust
  • earthquakes & volcanoes occur here
  • Iceland, Eyafjallajokull - American & Eurasian plates

Destructive Plate Boundary

  • two plates move towards each other
  • oceanic plate meets continental plate
  • oceanic sinks below continental (subduction) as it is denser
  • this creates volcanoes and ocean trenches
  • Earthquakes occur here
  • Andes - Nazca & South American plate

Conservative Plate Boundary

  • two plates move sideways past each other in opposite directions or the same direction at different speeds
  • crust isn't created or destroyed
  • earthquakes occur here
  • California - North American & Pacific plate

Fold Mountains

  • Form where plates collide at destructive margins
  • when tectonics collide, sedimentary rocks fold and are forced up to form mountains
  • fold mountain areas have high mountains which are rocky with steep slopes, snow & glaciers in the highest parts and lakes in valleys between mountains

Fold Mountains Case Study - Alps

  • Located in central Europe - Switzerland, Italy, France, Germany, Slovenia, Austria, Liechetenstein
  • Formed 30 million years ago when the European & African plates collided
  • Tallest peak Mont Blanc - 4810m French-Italian border
  • Population of 12 million


  • high mountain slopes aren't good for growing crops, so steeper areas are used to farm goats for milk & meat
  • lower slopes are used for crops, or higher slopes are terraced
  • some sunnier slops are used for vineyards - Lavaux, Switzerland


  • 100 million tourists a year
  • 70% of tourists in winter for skiing, snowboarding & ice climbing
  • in summer people visit for mountain biking, hiking & paragliding
  • new villages have been built to cater for the quantity of tourists - Tignes in France
  • Ski runs, ski lifts, cable cars, holiday chalets & restaurants fill the landscape

Hydroelectric Power:

  • narrow valleys are dammed to generate HEP - Berne, Switzerland
  • 60% of Switzerland's electricity is from HEP in the alps
  • electricity is used locally & exported


  • salt, iron ore, gold, silver & copper
  • mining has declined dramatically because of cheaper foreign sources
  • Mining is difficult in the Alps due to the steep slopes - zig-zag roads have been carved to get to them


  • Scots Pine is planted over the Alps as it is more resilient to goats, who have killed native tree saplings
  • Trees are logged & sold to make furniture, fuel & building materials

People have adapted to the conditions:

  • Steep relief: goats are farmed as they are well adapted…


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