What are the consequences of plate tectonics?
Giant plates of lithosphere moving around on a sphere has consequences. Big consequences. Most earthquakes and volcanic eruptions are due to plate interactions. Mountains originate where plates interact. If Earth's crust never moved, there would be a lot fewer natural disasters!
Plate tectonic processes explain why we see many types of geological activity where we do. Stresses build up in some locations. These stresses may cause folding or faulting. Earthquakes strike along all three types of plate boundaries. The most damaging earthquakes are shallow focus. People in earthquake-prone regions must be aware of the potential damage from earthquakes. Seismologists have scales for measuring earthquake intensity and magnitude. Cities in earthquake zones must build safe structures. They also have guidelines for being safe in earthquakes. Earthquakes are often associated with volcanoes. Volcanoes erupt at all types of plate boundaries except transform. Volcanic eruptions can be quiet or explosive. Volcanoes have a variety of shapes. The shapes range from large shields, to classic peaks, to small cones. Supervolcano eruptions are rare but extremely deadly. Volcanic activity creates unique landforms. Hot springs and geysers result when water meets hot rock below ground. Some geological activity, both earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, is located away from plate boundaries.