Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Older Age Confirmed for East Africa Rift

The huge changes in the Earth's crust that shaped the face of the African continent are being redefined. The East African Rift system has two main segments, the eastern branch passing through Ethiopia and Kenya and a western branch that forms a giant arc from Uganda to Malawi. The new research says the two rift segments developed together.
The Great Rift Valley of East Africa, the birthplace of the human species, may have taken much longer to develop than previously believed, researchers say.
Scientists from Australia's James Cook University and Ohio University said their findings suggest a major tectonic event as far back as 25 million to 30 million years ago rearranged the flow of large rivers such as the Congo and the Nile to create the landscapes and climates found in East Africa today.
The East African Rift system has two main segments, the eastern branch passing through Ethiopia and Kenya and a western branch that forms a giant arc from Uganda to Malawi.
Most scientists had believed the eastern branch of the region is much older, having developed 15 million to 25 million years before the western branch, but the new research provides evidence the two rift segments developed simultaneously. Read More