Scientists have found that the Yellow River began to form 1.25 million years ago

(ORDO NEWS) — Chinese researchers have found that the present-day Yellow River began to form 1.25 million years ago, according to an article published in Science Bulletin, China Daily reported Aug. 21.

Research into the formation history of the Yellow River and its driving mechanism can provide vital evidence to help us understand how the interaction between structure and climate has affected China’s geographic environment, said Lanzhou University professor Wang Xin.

He said that the Sanmengxia, as the last gorge along the main course of the Yellow River, plays a key role in studying the formation and evolution of the river system.

A research team from the university, together with China Earthquake Administration (CEA) Institute of Geology, CEA First Monitoring and Application Center, Shimane University, and China University of Geosciences (Wuhan), conducted environmental drilling and joint research in the center of the Sanmengxia Basin.

They obtained sedimentological, geochronological, and lineage data from a drilling core near Sanmenxia and concluded that typical riverbed deposits with detritus from the Ordos Block in upstream areas began to accumulate in Sanmenxia 1.25 Ma ago.

The researchers also suggested that the accelerated lowering of the eustatic level during the mid-Pleistocene transition may have played a role as important as tectonism in the origin and evolution of the modern Yellow River.

This study opens up a new perspective on the evolutionary history and development patterns of major river water systems around the world.

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