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1. n. [Geology]

The relative sinking of the Earth's surface. Plate tectonic activity (particularly extension of the crust, which promotes thinning and sinking), sediment loading and removal of fluid from reservoirs are processes by which the crust can be depressed. Subsidence can produce areas in which sediments accumulate and, ultimately, form sedimentary basins.

See: accommodationbasincrustgrowth faultplate tectonicsriftsedimentsedimentary basinsequence stratigraphy

Cross sections and maps of evaporites, rifting, and subsidence.

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