Tag: Induced seismicity

Earthquakes, dams and responsibility

(November 21, 2011) Matt Ridley, writing about dams and induced seismicity in the Wall Street Journal, cites Probe International’s reports on the consequences of building the Three Gorges Dam: the Yangtze is drying up downstream, and seismic activity has increased 30-fold.


China’s deadly dam fever

(August 31, 2011) Financial rewards for bypassing dam safety procedures have
created an unrestrained dam-building boom in China that is threatening lives and the

Three Gorges Dam: trigger of severe earthquakes?

(March 2011) The giant structure located in China has already caused more than 3,400 (so far minor) earthquakes. Scientists are now warning that a much bigger disaster could be looming on the horizon. A study by seismologists at the China Earthquake Administration (formerly known as the China Seismological Bureau) indicates that the massive Three Gorges dam on the Yangtze River “significantly increased” seismic activity along the dam’s reservoir.

Danger Pent Up Behind Aging Dams

(February 21, 2011) Aging dams have become a growing problem in the United States, and a potential threat to downstream populations. Besides the perils of elderly infrastructure, putting off repairs due to belt-tightening in a time of recession can aggravate lurking dangers from internal erosion, over-topping, and earthquakes.

Evidence for surface loading as trigger mechanism of the 2008 Wenchuan earthquake

(July 14, 2010) Abstract: Two and a half years prior to China’s M7.9 Wenchuan earthquake of May 2008, at least 300 million metric tons of water accumulated with additional seasonal water level changes in the Minjiang River Valley at the eastern margin of the Longmen Shan. This article shows that static surface loading in the valley induced Coulomb failure stresses on the nearby Beichuan thrust fault system at <17km depth.