The relief and minerals of South America

1. What processes form the relief of the east of the continent?

To answer this question, you need to compare two maps – a map of the structure of the earth’s crust and a map of the modern relief. Look at these maps and compare the structure of the earth’s crust in the east and west of the continent. The areas of the South American platform in the east of the continent are represented in relief by plains and plateaus, and areas of modern folding on the boundary of lithospheric plates are the Andes mountain system.

2. How the Andes were formed?

Formed at the junction of two lithospheric plates, the Andes did not complete their education at the present time. The oceanic lithospheric plate goes under the continental shelf, raising and destroying it in the zone of interaction and constant stress, which often manifests itself in the form of earthquakes, following these earthquakes tsunamis and volcanic eruptions. Spontaneous natural disasters, whose time

of action is difficult to predict, cause great damage to people and often leads to numerous human casualties.

3. Explain the regularity of the location of mineral deposits on the mainland.

Knowledge of the relationship between the structure of the earth’s crust and the relief will help you understand the causal relationships that exist between the structure of the earth’s crust, relief and minerals. Relatively flat areas on the surface of the earth’s crust are usually covered with a thick layer of sedimentary rocks, and only sometimes the crystalline basement of the platforms comes to the surface of the earth. Such sites are characterized by minerals of sedimentary origin. The areas of the earth’s crust in mobile folded areas are expressed on the surface by a form of relief such as mountains, they contain more minerals of magmatic and metamorphic origin. This is due to intense volcanism, subsidence and elevation of individual sections of the earth’s crust during frequent earthquakes.

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The relief and minerals of South America