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Magnitude 8 Earthquake in the Solomon Islands

It wasn't the great earthquake in Japan, but the epicenter did land in a region that was identified as a high probablity location. Tsunami warning has been issued.  Figures (screenshots) below.  More details later. Probability of an M>8 in the blue polygon in Figure 1 was estimated as 6.2% within 3 years.  Reasonably high, but not nearly as high as Japan.

Figure 1

Steve's picture

Japan’s Next Earthquake

If you’ve been reading John’s blog, you know that he is forecasting a large earthquake near Japan “sometime soon”. 

Have you heard of the term ‘card counting’?  Strategists employ the technique to predict the outcome of the casino game “21”. Well, John is basically ‘quake counting’.

All around the world, earthquake statistics follow a fairly universal pattern. 

(A) If in a given region over a given period of time you have experienced a certain number of magnitude 5 quakes,  then you’d expect one of magnitude 6.

john's picture

Another Forecast of a Great Earthquake Near Japan

Over the weekend I received an email from a colleague, Professor Vladimir ("Volodya") Kossobokov, who works at the Institut de Physique du Globe in Paris.  Professor Kossobokov has been a close colleague of Professor Vladimir Keilis-Borok, who is famous for having initiated studies of pattern recognition applied to earthquakes, US presidential elections (along with Allan Lichtman at the American University in Washington, DC) and other areas of interest to forecasters.

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Interesting Reports on Global Natural Catastrophes

Every year, the largest re-insurance companies and others produce year-in-review reports of global natural catastrophes and loss.  Here are links to a few of these from Munich Re, AON Benfield, and Swiss Re (links to others will be inserted when they become available).


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Partnering with the Association of Pacific Rim Universities to Support the New Multi-Hazards Initiative

The Open Hazards Group is excited to partner with the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU) to contribute to the new Multi-Hazards Program as described here.  The APRU is comprised of the 42 leading universities around the Pacific Rim.  The new initiative grew out of discussions initiated by APRU Secretary General Dr.

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How to Make Your Own Earthquake Forecast Anywhere on Earth

Its really simple.  You can see earthquake probabilities for your own or any other location. Here are the steps.  We will use the Circle Selection Tool to define a circular region.

1.  Roll over the the Tools tab at the top to see the drop down menu.  Click on the words Earthquake Viewer.

2.  You will see a Google map.  Look to the left side of the map.  Under the "Earthquake Hazard" heading, locate the Circle Selection Tool.  Click on the adjacent little box to the left side.

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About that M>8 Earthquake Near Japan (Technical)

To further investigate the data underlying the forecast, we defined a polygon of (lat,long) pairs around the main islands of Japan.  These (lat,long) pairs are given by: (34.3,128.2), (38.0,136.8), (45.6,141.0), (42.9,147.7), (32.0,145.5), (27.5,131.5).  These were entered into the ANSS User Interface.  We found the following for the earthquakes occurring from just after the M9.1 event on 3/11/2011 through 12/29/2012 (Note that there is no data in the catalog from 12/30/2012 through today, 1/28/2013): 911 events with M>5;   94 events  with M>6; and 6 events with M>7. 

Steve's picture

Sandy Surge

I read that Hurricane Sandy inflicted 50 billion dollars of property damage. I don’t know what fraction of the 50 billion was purely wind-sourced versus the fraction caused by storm surge. Certainly, the most graphic pictures of the damage in my mind are the homes tossed helter-skelter by the latter. A close second are images of businesses and houses sitting 6 or 8 feet deep in muddy water.

john's picture

Is Japan at Risk for Another Great Earthquake (M>8) in the Near Future?

Unfortunately it is very possible, at least according to the calculations on this web site.  We can use the earthquake viewer, found under the "Tools tab", to define a selection polygon in the Japan region (Figure 1 below).  A relatively recent addition to the viewer tool then computes the numerical probability for events M>5, M>6, M>7, and M>8 for time periods 1 month from now, 1 year from now, and 3 years from now, occurring within the defined region.  Figure 1 below shows that the probability for an M>8 earthquake is very high.

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Increasing Earthquake Probabilities Near Tokyo, Japan 1/10/2013

In the December 29, 2012 blog we saw that earthquake probabilities have changed dramatically in the region devastated by the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami off the Tohoku coast of Japan.  It is therefore interesting to see that the chance of a M>6.5 earthquake during the next year seems to be increasing in the area of Tokyo and Chiba, Japan, even over a period as short as 2 weeks.  The screenshots below document this change. 


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