The idea is that human ground water consumption caused subsidence that caused the formation of India by lowering the water table unequally so that India slipped under Nepal and created the Himyalas.

Here's my thinking:

  • India moved 1 billion mm in a billion years before humans. This is 1 million meters or 1000 kilometers. This means that India was moving the tectonic plates 1 mm a year before humans.

  • Then, when Indians invented agriculture 100,000 years ago, the modern acceleration rate became 100mm. The water table was much higher in ancient times by miles. This is why the ice age is too small to explain for example underwater pyramids, underwater civilizations and the much higher land level before human consumption caused land to fall much more than the ice age would allow or explain.

  • Before humans India and Nepal were colliding equally. Human water use could've caused the water table to fall on the Indian side making India subduct. There is no evidence for the water use because it is very easy to get ground water and ground water, and that use can cause earthquakes that wipe out the evidence of the water levels in previous times. The indirect evidence would be that India irrigated a large area and the water had to come from somewhere.

  • The Himalayas have a large Karst cave network. The Indian side is underground now. The remaining caves could only form from water. There is no way caves can form without water and the fact these huge caves are empty and collapsed seems to prove humans consumed much ground water and caused the Indian side to subside unequally.

So I'm thinking humans created the Himalayas by causing large ground water consumption, causing subduction, and many other areas also did this, so many civilization are underwater. I think the Ice Age is inadequate to explain how far and deep humans have caused the land level to fall since agriculture was invented.

Can this claim hold up, or what evidence is there for/against such a process?

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ Good question, which also applies to my kitchen: although, or perhaps because, I draw water from the tap every two to three hours, the pile of unwashed dishes in the neighboring sink continues to grow. $\endgroup$
    – klanomath
    Commented Jun 13 at 14:33
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ I've clarified the title. As originally written, heavy water could have been misinterpreted. $\endgroup$
    – Fred
    Commented Jun 14 at 19:23
  • $\begingroup$ Deemed spam or similar type of content $\endgroup$
    – f.thorpe
    Commented Jun 16 at 17:16

1 Answer 1


This is incorrect for many reasons. A lot is wrong here, tbh, I think you're trolling, but I'll respect your question and answer you seriously.

  1. The Himalayas started forming around 50 million years ago. I believe scientist know this because the oldest fossils of marine origin are also around 50 million years old. Therefore the speed at which the Indian tectonic plate has been moving much faster than your acclaimed 1mm/yr.

  2. Agriculture started around 12,000 years ago, not 100,000 years ago.

  3. How does lowering of ground water make the entire lithosphere subduct? Ground subsidence due to water extraction is due to decrease in pore water pressure, thus, effective stress is greater and therefore decrease in void space (Terzaghi's Principle). But that only affects soil, not rock. At the lithospheric scale, go far enough deep and the soil becomes rock due to diagenesis.

Tldr; 2 assumptions are off by an order of magnitude, and the main process that your hypothesis relies on does not affect the lithosphere.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Point 2 might be in relation to a recent push of Indian nationalism to rewrite the history of sciences, basically saying that India discovered just about everything. Sure India have had (and still have) great mathematicians, astronomers, etc. across the centuries, but this movement has some ridiculous claims. I remember seeing this at HSMSE, but cannot find it anymore (probably because it was deleted and I don't have enough reputation there to see deleted posts). $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 14 at 12:38
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    $\begingroup$ @Jean-MariePrival: Interesting point you make about "inventing everything". It's not the first time it's happened & it won't be the last. The Soviet Union used to make claims about Russians inventing things that were invented in western countries. $\endgroup$
    – Fred
    Commented Jun 14 at 19:28
  • $\begingroup$ The question also falsely assumes that early agricultural irrigation involved pumping up groundwater, rather than channeling surface water into ditches and reservoirs. The technology to extra groundwater at scale is historically recent. $\endgroup$ Commented Jun 14 at 22:14

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