Geology

Antonio Aledo, Professor of Sociology at the University of Alicante, warns that "because of real estate speculation and the management of public budgets based on income from the real estate business, seismic risk has been forgotten."

As an example, he used the town of Torrevieja, where one of the biggest earthquakes in the province of Alicante took place in 1829 with more than 389 dead and 209 wounded. And things would not be much better now.


The December 26th 2004 Mw ~9.2 Indian Ocean earthquake, also known as the Sumatra-Andaman or Aceh-Andaman earthquake and generated massive, destructive tsunamis, clearly demonstrated the need for a better understanding of how frequently subduction zone earthquakes and tsunamis occur. 

Using subsidence stratigraphy, a team traced the different modes of coastal sedimentation over the course of time in the eastern Indian Ocean where relative sea-level change evolved from rapidly rising to static from 8,000 years ago to the present day.

Two new studies led by UC Irvine using data from NASA Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment satellites show that civilization is rapidly draining some of its largest groundwater basins, yet there is little to no accurate data about how much water remains in them.

The result is that significant segments of Earth's population are consuming groundwater quickly without knowing when it might run out, the researchers conclude. The findings appear today in Water Resources Research.


Researchers have found chemical evidence for the presence of sulfur in the Earth's core. They determined the composition of the core, which is inaccessible to direct sampling, by analyzing isotopes - atoms of the same element that have different masses - of copper in various crust and mantle rocks and then comparing them with the chemical composition of meteorites, representative of the materials that formed the Earth. 

A new study shows that, from 1500 until 2000, about a third of floods in southwestern Netherlands were deliberately caused by humans during wartimes. Some of these inundations resulted in significant changes to the landscape, being as damaging as floods caused by heavy rainfall or storm surges. 


The central United States has undergone a dramatic increase in seismicity over the past 6 years. From 1973-2008, there was an average of 24 earthquakes of magnitude 3 and larger per year. From 2009-2014, the rate steadily increased, averaging 193 per year and peaking in 2014 with 688 earthquakes. So far in 2015, there have been 430 earthquakes of that size in the central U.S. region through the end of May.

There are many questions and misconceptions about what’s happening. How does the observed increase relate to oil and gas production activities? Does this connect to fracking—more formally known as hydraulic fracturing? What exactly is fracking? What are induced earthquakes?


The new disaster movie San Andreas draws on science fact - that earthquakes are a reality - and turns it into an action movie by creating a domino effect and pitting Duane "The Rock" Johnson against them.

Salt rock behaves as a fluid and can play a pivotal role in the large-scale, long-term collapse of the world's continental margins. However, the precise way in which this occurs is laced in controversy; nowhere is this controversy more apparent than along the Brazilian continental margin, where the origin of a feature called "the Albian Gap" has generated much heated debate over several decades.

Albian Gap is a zone in the Santos Basin, offshore Brazil, up to 75 kilometers wide and within which the Albian section is missing. 

The birth of a volcanic island is a potent and beautiful reminder of our dynamic planet’s ability to make new land. Given the destruction we’ve seen following natural events like earthquakes and tsunamis in the past few years, stunning images of two islands forming in the southern Red Sea are most welcome.

Anna Reusch, a doctoral student at ETH Zurich's Geological Institute, was making a routine research vessel run on Lake Neuchâtel when she noticed an unusual shape on the control panel screen.

At a depth of over 100 mettrs, she found something no one had ever detected before: a crater measuring 10 meters deep and 160 meters in diameter. 

Reusch investigates the sediment in the lakes on the western Swiss Plateau for traces of past earthquakes, which involves taking high-resolution measurements of the floor of Lake Neuchâtel to find evidence of tectonically active zones that could trigger major earthquakes. The period Reusch is looking at is geologically speaking very recent: sometime in the past 12,000 years.