Daniel Halliday
Sep 26 ยท Last update 3 mo. ago.

Why is Earthquake prediction so difficult?

It has been estimated that up to half a million Earthquakes occur around the world each year, some with devastating human impact and a range of consequences such as severe building damage, fire, floods, tsunamis, landslides, soil liquefaction, and even volcanic activity. The study of earthquakes is known as seismology, but despite a good understanding of the mechanics of earthquakes and accurate methods of measuring earthquakes the science has achieved relatively little in the way of pre-emptive preparedness or a warning system for large-scale seismic activity. Even the few accurate predictions of earthquakes that have been made remain controversial. Why is it so hard to predict seismic activity? And why are forecasts and predictions of earthquakes so controversial?
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Maybe impossible

Many theories have been put forward for scientific methods that could be used in order to predict seismic activity, by either establishing reliable earthquake precursors, physically measureable events that are consistent before seismic shifts, or analysing statistical trends. However no predictions have been made constituently and no method has shown to have a distinct relation to what may be too complex an event for science to explain. It therefore remains controversial as false predictions or claims have often caused public panic and widespread unrest. Preparedness is the only way to approach the issue of earthquakes, instead focussing on trying to improve earthquake-warning systems, systems that are currently in use, to inform other regions of earthquakes will allow more prepare for a disaster.


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Daniel Halliday
Sep 26