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Date and Time
Virtual Talk via Zoom
The formation of the Isthmus of Panama about 3 million years ago is one of the most significant geological events in recent Earth’s history, which is believed to have triggered migration of terrestrial organisms between the Americas, modified interoceanic currents, and led to establishment of current climate system. However, the geological history of Panama remains poorly understood due to logistic limitations to study rock sequences in the tropical environment. The formation of the Isthmus is often associated with the collision of the Panama volcanic arc with South America. Yet, Panama is a land of volcanoes, with a long history of volcanic activity that reflects important tectonic changes in the area over the past hundred million years. This webinar will present our most recent knowledge about this volcanic evolution. We will discuss how volcanism - not only tectonics - could have contributed to the emergence of the area by helping shape the modern landscape of the Isthmus.
Dr David Buchs is a Senior Lecturer in geology at the University of Cardiff, UK, and a Research Associate at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama. David studies ancient volcanic systems and is notably interested in the formation and erosion of oceanic islands such as those that grew to form the Isthmus of Panama. David leads the Geological Research on the Isthmus of Panama (GRIP), which is a project aimed at exploring and studying the geological evolution of the region. (https://panamageology.wordpress.com).