The Tectonic Setting of Alaska & How it Causes Earthquake in Our State

tectonic boundaries map Pacific Ocean.Alaska is the most tectonically active region in the United States. We experience more than half of all earthquakes recorded in North America each year. This is due to the state’s unique location on the northern rim of the Pacific Basin. At the northwest corner of the North America, Alaska is situated at the receiving end of the Pacific Plate as it slides laterally past southeast Alaska and collides directly with the North American Plate across southcentral Alaska and along the length of Aleutian Island Chain. The accumulation of tectonic stresses at depth along the plate boundaries and the translation of those stresses into the shallower crust of southern Alaska are the driving forces behind the high level of earthquake activity that occurs in our state.