Earth could have only one central continent in the future if the Pacific Ocean disappears completely.
It is hard to imagine the Earth without its seven continents, although this was already the case in the age of Pangaea. According to National Geographic, the flow of currents caused the lands to form cracks and slowly drift apart. However, it looks like history is repeating itself, as the Earth may have one giant continent in the future.
Infinite Ocean Recycling
As the largest ocean on Earth, the Pacific Ocean has played an essential role throughout history. Science Alert reports that the Pacific Ocean will cease to exist in about 300 million years. The diagnosis was made by a new supercomputer simulation of Earth’s “constantly drifting tectonic plates.”
The tectonic plates in the ocean act like a giant recycling system. New lava from the bottom of the ocean erupts, forming a new crust as it swallows the old crust into the depths of the cracks.
The Pacific Ocean is shrinking.
The recycling process is causing the Pacific Ocean to shrink slowly. As the Pacific tectonic plate slides more and more under the Eurasian and Indo-Australian plates, the distance between North America, Asia, and Australia automatically decreases.
The formation of the future continent would not be comparable to that of millions of years ago. Some studies even suggest that the increasing shrinkage of the ocean could cause North America to merge with Asia, creating a continent known as “Amasia.” Science Alert writes about this:
This new [simulation] suggests that the Pacific Ocean, not the Atlantic Ocean or the Caribbean Sea, will be destroyed if Amasia forms.
However, some studies contradict the exact formation of the giant continent and question the regions that lie side by side.
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