When the big one comes

Have taken to watching lectures on the geology of the Pacific North West. Particularly those given by Nick Zentner of Central Washington University. The one below is a little low tech for the most part, but worth watching all the way through.

Link to the New Yorker article by Kathryn Schulz that Nick references early in his talk here. It’s interesting isn’t it? And even more so when you appreciate the fact that a seven hundred mile subduction plate boundary comes unstuck every four to five hundred (or a thousand) or so years. I like to think of it as the biggest zip fastener in the world. And what a zipper it is. When it goes, so will the entire West coast of North America, all the way from Mexico to Alaska. My goodness. All that beach front property.

In the event of a 9.0 plus unzip, Downtown Victoria would be wiped off the map and Vancouver, even though it would miss the brunt of any subsequent tidal wave and Earthquake, would definitely be no place to be. The Airport Delta and Richmond areas would be flattened. The resulting Tsunami would hit everywhere on the Pacific rim as it did before on January 26th 1700. Don’t believe me? Read the report. Watch the video model.

However, I’m not going to lose any sleep over it. If it happens it’s a toss up between the house falling down around our ears and the mountain we live half way up the side of sliding down into the sea. Such is death. We all have to go sooner or later.

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