Submarine landslides can be tremendous in scale. They are one of the most important processes for global sediment fluxes and tsunami generation. However, studies of prodigious submarine landslides remain insufficient. In this review paper, we compile, summarize, and reanalyze the results of previous studies. Based on this reanalysis, we discover the giant Baiyun–Liwan submarine slide in the Pearl River Mouth Basin, South China Sea. We describe three concurrent pieces of evidence from ~23 Ma to 24 Ma, the Oligocene–Miocene boundary, for this landslide: the shoreward shift of the shelf break in the Baiyun Sag, the slump deposition to the southeast, and the abrupt decrease in the accumulation rate on the lower continental slope. This landslide extends for over 250 km, and the total affected area of the slide is up to ~35,000–40,000 km2
. The scale of the landslide is similar to that of the Storegga slide, which has long been considered to be the largest landslide on earth. We suggest that strike–slip movement along the Red River Fault and ridge jump of the South China Sea caused the coeval Baiyun–Liwan submarine slide. The identification of the giant landslide will promote the understanding of not only its associated geohazards but also the steep rise of the Himalayan orogeny and marine engineering. More attention needs to be paid to areas with repeated submarine landslides and offshore installations.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited