Tuesday, January 09, 2018

2018 Could Bring Increase in Severe Worldwide Earthquakes

[Newsweek] The new year could bring an increase in massive and devastating earthquakes, research from October suggested. But as our prediction of earthquakes becomes better, so does our ability to prepare for these natural disasters.
About four years ago, the Earth’s rotation slowed slightly. Although the decrease was not enough to notice, the Earth’s slower rotation may spark an increase in severe earthquakes for 2018, researchers from University of Colorado Boulder predicted in the fall.
According to the team’s research, which they presented at the Geological Society of America annual meeting in Seattle this October, there may be a trend between slower Earth rotations and more global earthquakes. Over the past 100 years, there was a 25 to 30 percent increase in the number of significant earthquakes associated with a slowdown in the Earth’s rotation.
According to Science Mag, Earth’s rotation began to slow nearly five years ago, which means that if this theory is true, 2018 could bring two to five more magnitude 7 earthquakes than usual. While this theory may predict how many earthquakes we can expect in 2018, it can’t help us identify where on the globe these earthquakes may occur, Newsweek reported.
Earthquakes are measured on the Richter scale, which categorizes the natural event on a scale of one to 10. The Richter scale measures the vibrations caused by the earthquake using a tool called a seismometer. While smaller earthquakes are very common, larger ones are less frequent, and significantly more devastating. There has never been a category 10 earthquake in recorded history, but those of 7 or 8 can cause significant damage and loss of life, BBC reported. Read More