Category Archives: earthquakes

317 years since the last rupture of the Cascadia megathrust

At around 9pm on the 26th January 1700, the Cascadia subduction zone – a shallowly dipping thrust fault that runs more than 1000 km north from Cape Mendocino in Northern California to the vicinity of Vancouver Island, ruptured in an estimated magnitude 9 earthquake. Continue reading

Categories: earthquakes, geohazards, society

An unremarkable year – seismically, anyway.

Political pundits seem fond of geological metaphors such as ‘earthquake’, ‘seismic shift’, ‘tectonic shift’ and ‘tsunami’ – and they’ve certainly had plenty of reasons to use such metaphors in the past 12 months, as both my birth country and my … Continue reading

Categories: earthquakes, geology, tectonics

The geodetic fingerprints of shallow thrusting in Nepal

NASA’s Earth Observatory put out this great image last week, which shows the ground displacement in Nepal resulting from last month’s devastating magnitude 7.8 earthquake, which has claimed at least 8,500 lives. The vertical displacements have been calculated by comparing … Continue reading

Categories: earthquakes, geohazards, structures, tectonics

Sumatra +10: contemplating the power of tsunami

Whilst touring Port Lockroy in Antarctica last Christmas Day, one of the exhibits describing the scientific research undertaken there had this interesting footnote: This is pretty mind-blowing, if you think about it: an isolated Antarctic outpost at around 65 degrees … Continue reading

Categories: earthquakes, geohazards, society

L’Aquila earthquake manslaughter verdict reversed

It should come as no surprise that I think that this is the right result: Six seismologists accused of misleading the public about the risk of an earthquake in Italy were cleared of manslaughter on 10 November. An appeals court … Continue reading

Categories: earthquakes, public science, society