Earthquakes occur everywhere around the world and they cannot be stopped. Caused by convection currents in the mantle, both phenomena’s cause seismic activity. This essay is about these two disasters and their effect on the global environment. Also, this paper will dictate whether or not British Columbia is ready for “the big one” (Earthquake), and how big it will really be.
The past 25 years have held varieties of earthquakes and volcanoes that have changed global environments considerably.
Out of the two beasts, I would have to say volcanoes have a greater and more widespread effect on the global environments. All Earthquakes do is form new landscapes and seabed. Volcanoes, such as the biggest one on Hawaii, have affected the weather of the southern part of the island and have caused a decreased amount of rainfall. Volcanoes can cause acid rain near the tops of craters, which in turn can severely affect ecosystems. Volcanic eruptions can cause global weather changes. This is due to the ash that is spewed out of the volcanoes mouth during an eruption to eventually block sunlight and cause a mini ice age. Although this is greatly feared, it takes a massive volcanic eruption to affect the world this way. One minor weather change is the downpour of rain near the volcano, due to the ashes’ ability to attract water vapor. A couple of other changes are the feared effects of lightning and perhaps thunder. One positive effect of an eruption is the fertile soils that land to be grown on. Even though these two malignant actions damage wildlife and the environment, their effects and only temporary.
Are we ready for “the big one” here in BC, one might ask, I for one think there could be some improvement. First of all, I want to emphasize how people will never be fully prepared for earthquakes. Seeing that, preventative measures can be taken but only the quake will tell if those measures will hold. Some simple things everyone can do to be prepared is to have a protected food stash somewhere where you spend most of your time. One measure is giving people knowledge as to how one should act when the love waves hit (LoL). Some tips are to know the crash position and where you go to do the crash position i.e. doorway, under desk, etc. Big changes such as making bridges “earthquake proof”, making buildings stronger, and sewage lines far underground or away from civilization would be smart to take. So far, BC has built almost every building to withstand a 7.2-7.4 magnitude EQ so buildings shouldn’t be a problem. A couple of problems I see are basic room details. For example, using glass instead of plexi-glass, or having loose cabinetry (that one was for you Ms. Collins). One thing I fear most is the predicted thoughts of Richmond sinking. The only action that could be taken to lessen the chance of Richmond sinking is to build stronger and perhaps bigger dikes.
Another problem we can rule out when the EQ occurs, are tsunamis. Since most of the tsunami will hit Vancouver Island, the lower mainland will remain calm of waters.
Glancing over what I have wrote about EQs and volcanoes, I could definitely see a global change happening in the future. Whether it is an ice age or acid rain, life’s existence on earth is prone to extinction some time or another. Also I feel BC could put a little more effort into preparing for an EQ. Lastly, do you think we are ready to shake, shake, shake!?