Dams and Earthquakes

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A USD80-million research project at India’s Koyna dam site will study reservoir-triggered earthquakes (aka reservoir-induced seismicity) and the causes behind them. Dam activity at Koyna was blamed for a powerful earthquake in 1967 that destroyed the village of Koynanagar in western India’s Maharashtra state, left 180 people dead, 1,500 injured, thousands homeless and power cut off to Bombay.

USD 80 mn study in Koyna region to study causes of earthquakes

Mumbai, May 24, 2016, (PTI)

An experiment would be conducted by deep drilling in the Koyna region near Karad in Maharashtra to study the causes of reservoir-triggered earthquakes of the kind that hit the Koyna dam almost half a century ago, Union Minister for Science and Technology Harsh Vardhan said today.

As a part of the USD 80 million research project at the Koyna dam site to study reservoir triggered seismicity, a research laboratory will be set up at Karad in western Maharashtra, which will serve as the operational centre for the research activities related to the deep drilling, the minister said, addressing a national video-link Press conference from New Delhi, linking 12 cities, Vardhan said.

The Koyna region, close to the west coast of India, is considered an area of Reservoir Triggered Seismicity (RTS).

Three years after builders completed the Koyna Dam, a 6.5-magnitude earthquake hit the area in 1967, killing more than 100 people.

The phenomenon of dam-triggered earthquakes is known as reservoir-induced seismicity, but not much is known about the phenomenon.

The Government has successfully used science and technology for growth and development of the country, he said.

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