American seismologists are sounding the alarm: the movement of ocean plates may be caused by natural disasters, which will lead to the destruction of dozens of settlements in the north-west coast of the U.S., says the Internet newspaper "Morning."
According to experts of the laboratory of tectonic activity and underwater mapping of the University of Oregon, a new earthquake of magnitude higher than 8 can be expected in the immediate vicinity of the coast of the United States.
Large-scale natural disaster affect the so-called cascade — the coastal population in the north-western United States, stretching from Vancouver Island to Northern California. Following the peak trigger subsequent tsunami and a series of aftershock jolts that will erase from the face of the earth dozens of small towns situated near the coastal zone.
The last time a major earthquake in the area was more than 300 years ago. Since "megazemletryaseniya" occur with a frequency of about once every 240 years, it is estimated scientists aftershocks with magnitude greater than 8 should be expected in the coming years with a probability of 45%, and 9-point earthquake — with a probability of 15%.
By "megazemletryaseniyami" seismologists imply powerful tremors that occur in subduction zones — places where oceanic crust into the mantle. That such was the earthquake in Japan on March 11, which became the most destructive in the history of the country. Peak capacity of 9 quake on the Richter scale was recorded in an area where two tectonic plates are closed.
Connection of two tectonic plates — the North American and Juan de Fuca — a seismically dangerous subduction zone. Laboratory of the University of Oregon recorded an increase in pressure of the plates to each other can result in a large-scale disaster. "I have no doubt that it is now gaining strength for the coming earthquake," — said the head of the research group of Professor Chris Goldfinger.
"History teaches us that in the next ten years should expect new megazemletryaseny. And we have no reason to think that they will not exceed the rate of one per year, as it was before ", — says Director of the Yale Institute for the Study of the biosphere Jeffrey Park in one of his recent articles.
American experts are not alone in their pessimistic forecasts. The fact that the Earth has entered a new phase of the seismic, say Russian scientists. Thus, the head of the Laboratory of Regional Geology and Tectonophysics Pacific Oceanological Institute Valery Abramov believes that now is seismotectonic activation subsurface. Increase in seismic activity scientists predict for the summer and autumn of this year.
Recall that the earthquake in Japan, the Eurasian tectonic plate moved 20 meters to the east. Moreover, the researchers found that the movement of the tectonic plates of Europe and Africa, diverging from each other for thousands of years, has recently stopped, which may be a sign of the beginning of the reverse process — convergence.