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Baikal Rift Zone: Wikis

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Map of the Lake Baikal Rift Zone from the USGS factsheet

The Baikal Rift Zone is a divergent plate boundary centered beneath Lake Baikal in southeastern Russia. To its west is the Eurasian Plate and to its east is the Amur Plate which is moving away from the rift toward Japan at about 4 mm per year.

As in all divergent plate boundary zones, the crust in the Baikal Rift Zone is thinning and magma is very close to the surface. Hot springs are present both on land and under Lake Baikal, although thus far, no evidence of actual volcanism has been found in the immediate vicinity of the lake. However, geologically-recent volcanic activity has occurred nearby and is probably associated with the Baikal Rift Zone. These volcanic centers are the Udokan Plateau,[1] located about 400 km ENE of the northern tip of Lake Baikal, the Oka Plateau,[2] located about 200 km WNW of the southwest tip of Lake Baikal, and the Vitim Plateau,[3] around 200 km east of the rift.

Besides the East African Rift and the West Antarctic Rift, the Baikal Rift zone is the only other current example of a divergent plate boundary within continental crust on Earth.

Interpreted seismic reflection profile across Lake Baikal from the USGS factsheet

References

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