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THE Tsunami Thread (merged)

Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby rockdoc123 » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 12:54:10

Correlation is certainly not necessarily causation, and improved monitoring can certainly skew the data, but if you check the records on wiki or elsewhere, there have been about 150 earthquakes over 7 (the usual definition of 'major or great') since 2000 (the date where your graph stops, and only about 50 from 1970 to 2000. It is not my specialty, but I don't know of any major breakthrough in seismology technology that would have increased our ability to sense earthquakes by about ten times in 2000. So presumably there has been some significant level of increase in the last ten years over the long term average. I am inclined to assume that the fact that this coincides with the period when the effects of GW, especially of large ice bodies, really started to accelerate dramatically. But it does not strike me as on the face of it an utterly inane question whether ice cap melting and sea level rise has or could affect pressure points in plate tectonics, some of which are apparently on hair triggers, ready to go off explosively with the slightest forcing.


Worth reading the statement called earthquake myths at the USGS
http://earthquake.usgs.gov/learn/faq/?faqID=110
It is noted the frequency/energy release of earthquakes since 2000 though increasing on average over the past 10 years pales in comparison to where it was from 1900 through to 1930 when it was much higher and for which you could not possibly draw a correlation with melting ice caps or rising sea level.
http://www.johnstonsarchive.net/other/quake1.html

The number of rock mechanic principles you would have to completely ignore to suggest that crustal response to melting ice in the Artic has any influence on Japan trench tectonics boggles the mind.

As to correlation and causation Lubos Motl had an interesting tongue in cheek observation:

In particular, the Japanese earthquake was caused by iPad 2 which is being released exactly today while iPad 1 was released exactly one year ago, i.e. 2 weeks after the Chilean earthquake. At the time of the Indonesian tsunami, Apple changed its suppliers and opened its first store in Europe (London) and sold its 200-millionth song via iTunes.


Apparently it is all to do with the number of people storming to the apple stores and creating unequal loading in the continental crust! :roll:
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby rockdoc123 » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 12:59:51

Oh bullshit rockdoc. I've been around here for over 5 years and without a doubt there have been other things you've called people ill-informed for, like asserting that Saudi production has peaked. I believe you had some choice words in that vein for the late Matt Simmons. Meanwhile, the Saudis seem to be having trouble getting back to 9mb/d and seem to have an excess of crappy, thick, sulfur-laden shit that nobody wants. Maybe it slipped your mind, but peak oil is about the light, sweet stuff. Yow know, the high EROEI stuff.


so far off topic but I will respond as it seems to be a personal attack.

At this point, it's pretty much like whatever you say, the smart money is on the opposite. And in 5 years, you've been proven wrong time and time again. When do you quit?


First off peark oil is not about the "light, sweet stuff" it is about oil in general and given heavy sour crudes when treated are fungible with lighter sweet crudes your argument is nonsensical.

What evidence is there the Saudis are having trouble getting to 9 mb/d …..and what evidence is there that the extra oil is either heavy or higher sulphur….None whatsoever is the answer.

The fact here is that the Saudis increased their production by 300,000 bopd in January and early February. As well the quality of the crude is exactly the same as it has always been. None of the megaprojects brought on stream since 2008 have either higher sulphur nor lower API than the average of historical production.

You make a statement like that you should back it up with examples. From memory it seems I said the Saudis would be able to complete the megaprojects and get to the 12 MMB/d spare capacity. All of the projects were completed with the exception of Manifa which was postponed until 2013 and Aramco has stated several times their spare capacity is now at 12 MMB/d. I also said that Simmons had not read the SPE articles with proper understanding as what he portrayed as a disaster waiting to happen was actually portrayed as problems that were being solved in the actual papers. Proof in the pudding would be his comment that Ghawar was going to collapse very quickly (5 years and that hasn’t happened) that Khurais would never produce (it is producing and has capacity of 1.5 MMB/d as I remember) that the Ghawar water encroachment would continue (the 30% average water cut in Ghawar has been maintained according to Aramco publications in SPE. I think I also said that there seemed to be no observable connection between CO2 and global temperatures and over the past 5 years CO2 has continued to rise increasing the level of divergence with temperature. I also pointed out that the nonsense being spewed here by some by about the BP blowout was incorrect noting they would eventually get it under control and that there was not a number of other leaks related to it (which of course was also correct).
So again please point to some example where I’ve been “wrong time and time again” with some proof to that effect. Better yet start another thread if you are so intent on making an arse of yourself.
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby Maddog78 » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 13:09:36

I'm surprised anybody even mentions Simmons around here after all the embarrassing stuff he said about Macondo.
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby Sys1 » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 13:41:38

Reading this made me think about some home made theory :
As mankind change the atmosphere of the planet by adding CO2 and CH4, the ability of Earth to dissipate heat decrease, the air and oceans are getting warmer, absorbing more energy from the sun.
At the same time, Earth create heat itself as it always do, with magma moving this heat up and up to the surface. I guess that, just like skin for a human body, the crust is the point where heat from the planet dissipate in the atmosphere (or oceans) then space. Would it be possible that too warm oceans (and eventually atmosphere) would reduce the ability of Earth to dissipate its core heat?
If it were the case, heat under crust would increase to the point where many volcanoes eruptions/earthquakes would happen.
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby rockdoc123 » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 14:51:50

Heat from the earths core is measured as around 85 milliwatts/m2 whereas the heat from the sun is around 2000 kilowatts/m2. As a consequence the heat derived from the core is miniscule in comparison to that derived from the sun....and if you believe all the AGW pundits the sun is relatively unimportant itself in comparison to CO2.
So I think this is a logic failure unless I got my solar radiance number incorrect (possible since I'm pulling it from memory).
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby scas » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 15:51:12

I wonder at what threshold rising sea levels start having an effect on seismic activity? Obviously I will wait for the people studying such phenomena.

I thought the suns radiance at top of the atmosphere averaged ~1300 watts not kilowatts. And according to wiki only 250 watts of that make it to each square metre on the ground...

And that's why small factors like greenhouse gasses and pollution add up to a net few-watts and cause large changes.

Could be wrong. Wouldn't be the first. If anyone tells you the sun is unimportant, just tell them to look at the difference between night and day..its good to brush up.
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby sparky » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 18:24:29

.

the forces causing earthquakes are trully huge ,
theoreticallly at the point of rupture a little girl skipping along could create a magnitude 10 earthquake
that doesn't means the little girl "caused "the earthquake
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby dolanbaker » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 18:36:21

+1

The classic "hair trigger" in action, anything can set it off, but none of these things or forces armed the 'quake in the first place.
Ronald Coase, Nobel Economic Sciences, said in 1991 “If we torture the data long enough, it will confess.”
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby efarmer » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 20:58:10

After earning international acclaim with my theorem of White Mice Causing Cancer,
I will put my ample mind to work at how plate tectonics is controlled by posts on Facebook,
particularly ones about what you had for lunch and which TV show you are presently watching.
If you smell rubber burning, you know I am thinking hard.
I will return with the goods once I hammer out a few missing pieces of logic...

EF
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby joewp » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 21:10:19

dolanbaker wrote:+1

The classic "hair trigger" in action, anything can set it off, but none of these things or forces armed the 'quake in the first place.


But I think that's the point here. The melting ice and rising seas are adding stress to already stressed plate boundaries in multiple locations, causing them to release in a bunch rather than over a longer time, which would have happened had things remained more or less static. It makes sense to me.
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby Asterisk » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 22:05:23

rockdoc123 wrote:It is noted the frequency/energy release of earthquakes since 2000 though increasing on average over the past 10 years pales in comparison to where it was from 1900 through to 1930 when it was much higher and for which you could not possibly draw a correlation with melting ice caps or rising sea level.



Good point. I'll give you that! I suppose if there is another large quake this year, we will have to reconsider.
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby rockdoc123 » Wed 16 Mar 2011, 22:50:24

But I think that's the point here. The melting ice and rising seas are adding stress to already stressed plate boundaries in multiple locations, causing them to release in a bunch rather than over a longer time, which would have happened had things remained more or less static. It makes sense to me.


Last time anyone looked there was no melting ice anywhere near the Pacific Plate nor the Japan trench. As I pointed out there is no way you could come up with an explanation of how such minuscule extensional stresses would be transmitted this distance through plates and plate boundaries. And as to ice melt lubrication of faults this would only happen in very, very shallow levels (less than a km and of course where the ice is melting) and the quakes in question are medium to deep crustal. As to sea level rise Dorlomin pointed out how the stress involved is ridiculously small for current sea level rise.

This is special pleading. You want to have every disaster in the world somehow linked to AGW and hence be the fault of man. It simply isn't. Stress in the plate boundaries builds up to a point which is called Elastic Yield Stress. Occasionally when the fault plane does not have a high coefficient of sliding friction perhaps caused by fault gouge faults move continuously without exhibiting the stick-slip nature that is necessary for faults to happen. Exactly what the yield stress is or what the situation of resolved stress is along a given fault plane is not well known hence when or whether or not a fault will create an earthquake due to strain release is currently unpredictable. As I mentioned before there has been an immense amount of experimental work in this area, the really detailed empirical and mathmatical work completed at the Centre for Tectonophysics Research at A&M.

Earthquakes have been happening with greater frequency and greater energy since geologic time began. There is no pattern that can be drawn to equate it with global warming and certainly no logical scientific theory. You might as well suggest that fairies dancing in your garden are responsible...there is an equal amount of theory and evidence to justify that suggestion.
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby scas » Thu 17 Mar 2011, 00:16:09

I don't care that nobody thinks it can have an effect now. I care that in my lifetime sea level will rise 2 feet, temperatures by 4 degrees, and that will have a significant effect.

http://www.montrealgazette.com/technolo ... story.html

According to data from the U.S. Geological Survey there were 1,085 major earthquakes in the 1980s. This increased in the 1990s by about 50 per cent to 1,492 and to 1,611 from 2000 to 2009. Last year, and up to and including the Japanese quake, there were 247 major earthquakes.

There has been also a noticeable increase in the sort of extreme quakes that hit Japan. In the 1980s, there were four mega-quakes, six in the 1990s and 13 in the last decade. So far this decade we have had two. This increase, however, could be temporary.

Hynes said there is some evidence that one earthquake can snowball into another until the Earth's crust has adjusted to the new pressure transfers.

The coast of British Columbia sits on the Pacific fault line that curves around the southern coast of Alaska, travelling southwest to Japan.

Hynes said the upper plate of Vancouver Island is flexing like a bow. It's stuck and bending upward. Ultimately it will release itself and produce a major quake, he said.

Japan's big earthquake could change the tectonic stresses in the Pacific and possibly affect Vancouver.

"I'm afraid to say that Canada is by no means as careful about its building codes as Japan," Hynes said.

Montreal sits on a fault line that travels along the St. Lawrence River valley.

Hynes said the fault is smack in the middle of a tectonic plate, making it harder to understand the stresses.


Ironic because I was thinking about this a few months ago. But when don't doomers think of doom? Personally I don't care because when you're living on that fault zone you mentally block it out.
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby rangerone314 » Thu 17 Mar 2011, 00:18:38

dolanbaker wrote:+1

The classic "hair trigger" in action, anything can set it off, but none of these things or forces armed the 'quake in the first place.

+2 Don't they call that the "butterfly effect" in chaos theory or such?
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby sparky » Thu 17 Mar 2011, 07:23:37

.
Not quite ,
the butterfly effect refer to a chaotic system where the final result cannot be computed from its initial state
the trigger effect is when a fully determinated system reach a change of state
at the infinitely brief moment when the forces are balanced an infinitely small event can trigger
a rupture , rather than a butterfly it's more the proverbial camel and the proverbial straw
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby TheDude » Thu 17 Mar 2011, 08:18:03

However, "relative to the 20-year period from the mid-1970s to the mid 1990s, the Earth has been more active over the past 15 or so years," said Stephen S. Gao, a geophysicist at Missouri University of Science and Technology. "We still do not know the reason for this yet. Could simply be the natural temporal variation of the stress field in the earth's lithosphere." (The lithosphere is the outer solid part of the Earth.)


Big quake question: Are they getting worse? - World news - Chile earthquake - msnbc.com

Even taking out the New Zealand events, there are still four major earthquakes at least as big as magnitude 8.6 in the last seven years – the two events in Sumatra in 2004 and 2005, the Chilean earthquake in 2010, and Japan. This is unusual, Rundle said.
"The question is, is it so unusual that these things are causal? We don't know that, but we used to believe that these things were independent and you would see random clustering, but this has become so pronounced that you have to think there might be some correlation to it," he told me today. "In fact most of our models that we use do show correlations of earthquake events."
Rundle added that he believes that earthquakes are correlated and these big events are correlated. The question is, are they correlated because there is a surge in plate motion or do these things just align in spurts when looked at over spans of thousands of years?


Cosmic Log - Is Japan's quake part of a cluster?

This also has a riposte from a USGS employee, with handy three chart pdf. Throwing in the Tōhoku quake it does look to me like events >9 mm do occur, clustered throughout a decade, as the author admits. Unfortunately he didn't bother with labeling the X axis, but you can get the gist easy enough. Tried to find some actual detailed research on this but didn't come up with much.

The growing number of monitoring stations isn't really an issue with tracking these huge quakes; I'd figure you'd be hard pressed to not know about those, even pre 19th century. I have my doubts about global warming causing major quakes, but perhaps major quakes cause major quakes.
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby rockdoc123 » Thu 17 Mar 2011, 09:35:46

The growing number of monitoring stations isn't really an issue with tracking these huge quakes; I'd figure you'd be hard pressed to not know about those, even pre 19th century. I have my doubts about global warming causing major quakes, but perhaps major quakes cause major quakes.


The issue is the sensitivity of the monitoring equipment. They pick up the slightest vibration (which creates issues with filtering noise of course) and can, hence, detect earthquakes at very long distances. Prior to monitoring you would only be aware of those within the distance by which the earthquake generated P & S waves were attenuated. An earthquake of say richter 7.0 would be felt up to a distance of around a 100 km away, any further and you wouldn't be aware anything happened.

And yes it has been known for a very long time that large quakes can cause a series of quakes. Those quakes, however should be within the same plate and not at long distances. What happens is that as a fault dislocation occurs the in-situ stress field is altered such that fault planes which previously had resolved fault plane stresses that favored no movement suddenly are in a situation where the primary compressive/extensional/transtensional stress has reoriented to a position which favors movement. This is precisely why there are after shocks....other less major movements caused as a result of the major movement. This is also the problem with predicting major quakes from minor "preshocks" which are small movements along fault planes. Because it is impossible to tell what the resolved fault plane stress is on any given fault at any given time and even harder to figure it out once a fault has occurred it is impossible to say that preshocks will always lead to a major movement. The number of variables here is quite large, again why a stochastic approach is best.
The rationale for saying it is unreasonable to assume that a major quake in Japan will suddenly make a major quake somewhere else along the "ring of fire" activate is because the ring of fire is a series of subduction zones on several different plate boundaries. These plates have movement speed and trajectories that are quite dissimilar, the dip of the benioff zone (the earthquake swarms which define the subducting slab) is quite variable and the rock materials are considerably different. Many of the subduction zones have almost perpendicular plate convergence whereas others are quite oblique which determines also that the fault mechanism and depth of earthquake will be different. As an example the state of Alaska has everything from oblique to perpendicular convergence, a product of the shape of the continent and the trajectories of the Pacific and North American plates.
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby sparky » Mon 21 Mar 2011, 19:41:26

.
No need to go to California to be frightened
this one is what get the Japanese wetting their pants
the 1923 great Kanto earthquake ,a follow up is now overdue

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1923_Great ... earthquake
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby dohboi » Mon 06 Jun 2011, 21:33:35

Japan Times

Tuesday, June 7, 2011 NISA doubles early fallout estimate
Kyodo--NISA on Monday more than doubled its estimate of the radioactive material ejected into the air in the early days of the Fukushima nuclear crisis to 770,000 terabecquerels.

The nuclear safety agency also issued its own assessment of the cores in reactors 1, 2 and 3 at the Fukushima No. 1 power plant, assuming that all of them melted, and said it was possible the meltdowns in units 1 and 2 happened faster than the time frame estimated by Tokyo Electric Power Co.

The assessment by the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency is expected to be reflected in Japan's report on the accident at a ministerial meeting being hosted by the International Atomic Energy Agency later this month.


Climate Debate Daily
Seismic activity linked to global warming
Finally, human civilization is starting to get global warming events that it can FEEL.

Earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanoes. Something real, something hard, fast, and impossible to ignore. Increasing evidence and statistical analysis links increased seismic activity to global warming.

This alarming notion was first discussed in 1998 and is now more widely mentioned in university studies and recent publications - from the Journal of Geodynamics to National Geographic, to blogs reporting opinions of scientists (below).

Some intuitive calculation may help understanding: A cubic yard of ice weighs nearly a ton. The Antarctic ice sheet is a few miles thick. Earth adjusted to that immense weight over the millennia - now, as ice caps melt, this weight is slowly lifting..
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Re: Did global warming cause the Japan Earthquake/Tsunami?

Unread postby Ferretlover » Mon 06 Jun 2011, 23:39:02

No, it was tectonic(sp?) plate movement.
A more pertinent question would be something along the lines of: What affect did the quake & tsunami have on Japan's resources, especially energy?
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