A team of US scientists have identified climate change and ice sheet melt as the likely causes of several massive 7 to 7.5-magnitude quakes that occurred in 1811 and 1812 along the New Madrid fault in the middle of the North American continent in an area not typically prone to quake activity.
After studying the fault for a decade, the researchers found no evidence of growing pressure that might have ordinarily predicted a future quake. They instead concluded that the pressure was likely built through a geologic event such as the uplift of the Rocky Mountains. Then, at the end of the last Ice Age, when melting sheets flowed down the Mississippi River, the additional water flow washed vast amounts of sediment away, relieving pressure that had been weighing down on the Earth’s crust. This would create conditions for the fault to move, thus releasing the stored pressure and creating the quakes that occurred at that time.
Professor Eric Calais of University of Purdue stated, “We understand why earthquakes happen at the contact between tectonic plates, like in California, but it has always been a puzzle as to why earthquakes occur in the middle of the continent as well, and with no visible surface deformation.
Our theory links an external climate-driven process, the melting of the ice sheet, and earthquakes.”Thank you Professor Calais and colleagues for helping us to understand more about the link between global warming and disruptions like earthquakes.
May we heed this research and act to avoid future disasters by restoring the balance in our ecosphere. During an October 2009 videoconference in Indonesia, Supreme Master Ching Hai addressed similar scientific findings regarding temblors in a warming world, and suggested a holistic way to re-stabilize the planet.