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Geoscientist Online

Myanmar Geology, Resources and Tectonics

sftjuMyanmar Geology, Resources and Tectonics, Geological Society Memoir No. 48 is made up of 31 chapters and an appendix on geochronology.  Each chapter is a stand-alone paper that has been assimilated into a single volume covering three related topics.   Details of some of the papers present an easy-to-follow description of the tectonic setting of different mining areas throughout most the country.  The introduction to the volume has a general description of some of the major mining organizations that have worked in Myanmar since the Chinese started silver mining at the Bawdwin mine site in the 15th Century.  Myanmar’s location and geologic evolution with respect to India, Eurasia, China, Thailand, Laos, Sumatra and the Andaman Sea from the Paleozoic to the present is discussed.  

The authors note that, due to current internal conditions, not all of Myanmar is thoroughly discussed in the volume, or fully explored for mineral resources.  For what is included and covered, an overview of the local geologic setting relationship between the ores and gemstones with respect to the local and regional geology is well presented.  In several places the authors discuss the relationships between different ores and ophiolites, faulting, as well as granites and limestones or sandstones.  In several cases, samples of selected mines are discussed in enough detail to allow the reader to obtain a picture of the geologic setting at the mines, including how much ore had been removed, when data was available.

Overall, I found the volume to be an outstanding general reference for the geology, resources and tectonic description of Myanmar, including adjacent offshore areas.  A suggested improvement would be a map depicting all the major mines and placer deposits for the metals and gemstones on one sheet, as a supplement to the volume.  In addition, the discussion of coal oil and gas resources is a little short and could be expanded.  That said, I highly recommend this volume for anyone interested in the geology, resources and tectonics of Myanmar.  The volume should be reviewed as a benchmark by anyone considering preparing a similar volume in another country or region. 

Reviewed by Robert Anderson

MYANMAR GEOLOGY, RESOURCES AND TECTONICS edited by A.J. BARBER, K. ZAW AND M. J. CROW 2017 Published by The Geological Society, London, Memoir 48, ISBN:  978-1-86239-969-3 List Price:  £ 160 Fellows Price:  80.00 W: www.geolsoc.org.uk/M0048