The expansion of the earth’s surface is demonstrated by what U.S. state that is believed to be increasing by 1.2 “nanostrains” per year?
“We didn’t expect it to be so spread out,” University of Colorado geophysicist Anne Sheehan told the Albuquerque Journal. Indeed, the rift’s movement hasn’t been absorbed into the land directly around it, leading to a widespread stretching and rucking that has affected terrain in a radius of hundreds of miles – and maybe even more, stretching not just New Mexico but Texas and Arizona as well.
The driving distance between Phoenix and Dallas is getting farther. It’s a minuscule difference – not even a millimeter a year – but it’s a tangible phenomenon, and you can blame on the middleman: New Mexico. The Rio Grande Rift, the fault line that bisects the southwestern state, is bursting at the seams, pushing apart New Mexico’s borders and stretching the land around it.
New Mexico Is Stretching, Slowly but Surely