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Will 2018 Bring Massive Earthquakes? Earth Could Enter High Seismic Activity Period
As the new year dawns on us, the first horrible news is already out for the year. Scientists are predicting a massive increase in the number of large earthquakes in 2018.
Scientists have found an alarming link between slowing seismic activity of Earth and an increase in the number of surface tremors. There are periods where minute fluctuations in the speed of Earth’s rotation cause a change in the length of days and nights. These changes add up and cause a period of measurably slower speed in Earth’s rotation around its own axis. It is believed these changes could trigger increased seismic activity.
A team of researchers from University of Colorado (CU) in Boulder found during the past 100 years, Earth’s slowdowns have correlated surprisingly well with periods with a global increase in magnitude 7.0 and larger earthquakes.
Usefully, the spike, which adds two to five more quakes than typical, happens well after the slow-down begins.
“The Earth offers us a 5-years heads up on future earthquakes, which is remarkable,” says Roger Bilham, professor at CU and lead author of study along with Rebecca Bendick at the University of Montana in Missoula in a study related released on journal Science….
New Report Shows Weather Disasters In 2017 Cost More Than $300 Billion
Before it got cold this winter, it was warm. Very warm. In fact, new data out Monday shows 2017 was the third warmest year recorded in the lower 48 states.
And it was also a smackdown year for weather disasters: 16 weather events each broke the billion-dollar barrier.
First, the heat. Last year was 2.6 degrees F warmer than the average year during the 20th century.
That may be hard to remember in the thick of winter. But climate scientist Deke Arndt points out that even in a warm year, we still have frigid weather that invades from the north. “We still have very cold poles and we still have the same weather systems that pull cold air away from those poles into places where we live,” he explains.
Administration that assesses each year’s weather and climate. They note that 2017 is the 21st year in a row in which the average annual temperature was warmer than the average over the 20th century. And the five warmest years for the lower 48 states have all occurred since 2006.
NOAA experts also tally the cost of bad weather. And last year was pricey. NOAA researcher Adam Smith says the cost of these events was unprecedented. “The cumulative impact of these 16 events exceeds $300 billion in damage,” Smith says, “which is a new U.S. annual record.” And having 16 billion-dollar events in one year has only happened once…