Earthquake near a major city with death toll ‘unprecedented in human history’ a matter of time: Professor Iain Stewart

Unlike gorebull warblers, this guy is talking about genuine risk:

IT’S only a matter of time before a huge earthquake strikes a major city and results in a death toll “unprecedented in human history”.

Well-known Scottish scientist Iain Stewart delivered that grim prediction yesterday in Brisbane during an address to a global geology conference.

Professor Stewart, a geologist and academic who has gained fame for multiple BBC television series on the planet, said the risk of disaster has grown because a growing number of mega-cities are built on or near major earthquake faults.

Large settlements since antiquity have been based on these fault lines because they also help provide water and are usually located near flat plains ideally suited for growing crops.

This “fatal attraction” to dangerous areas was “actually a good thing”, because historically the trade-off was worth it since earthquakes were rare and most cities were not that large, he said.

While earthquakes today were often less destructive because of improved building codes, more people were affected because cities were larger, Prof Stewart told delegates at the 34th International Geological Congress.

Courier-Mail

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2 responses to “Earthquake near a major city with death toll ‘unprecedented in human history’ a matter of time: Professor Iain Stewart

  1. So don’t live in a big city.

  2. Bloke down the pub

    Iain Stewart was a big supporter of the hockey stick but I haven’t seen him being so vocal lately.

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