February 20, 2015
Crustal deformation at the ends of the Himalayan arc: Rotating rivers and Mile-high Medieval floods


Roger G. Bilham
Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES)
University of Colorado, Boulder

New GPS data constrain Hmalayan convergence rates in Kashmir, Bhutan and Assam and show that the Shillong plateau and the Brahmaptura valley are rotating clockwise at 1deg/My. Earthquakes with Mw.8.5 appear to be overdue in these Himalayan locations. In 883AD a medieval earthquake triggered an earthquake that blocked the Jhelum and flooded the Kashmir valley. Temples appear to have been erected around the shoreline of this flood. The dates of their partial destruction by earthquakes is estimated from carbon interred beneath collapsed temple megabucks.