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Explanations for the lack of acid geothermal springs in Tibet are inferred from a comprehensive hydrochemical comparison of Tibetan geothermal waters with those discharged from Yellowstone (USA) and two active volcanic areas, Nevado del Ruiz (Colombia) and Miravalles (Costa Rica) where acid springs are widely distributed and diversified in terms of geochemical characteristic and origin. For the hydrothermal areas investigated in this study, there appears to be a relationship between the depths of magma chambers and the occurrence of acid, chloride-rich springs formed via direct magmatic fluid absorption. Nevado del Ruiz and Miravalles with magma at or very close to the surface (less than 1–2 km) exhibit very acidic...