Subtitle: Yes, apparently we can even cause earthquakes now too.

This one comes from a thoroughly scary article on National Geographic’s Website. Christian D. Klose of Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory in Palisades, New York, has released research indicating that the largest earthquake in Australian history, was caused by 200 years worth of coal mining in a specific region. The removal of millions of tons of coal, plus the displacement of over 4 times that much weight in groundwater (to prevent the underground mine from flooding), created the stresses that led to the 5.6 magnitude quake.

Now, a 5.6 quake really isn’t that big, as far as earthquakes go, but it’s far above what geologists would normally expect to see in seismically stable Australia.

Klose’s research also points to more than 200 other earthquakes triggered by human activity – mostly mining, but also include various water projects, and natural gas extraction. Three of the largest of these earthquakes ranged between magnitude 6.8 to 7.3, which are pretty sizable quakes.

It’s a pretty interesting, and spooky read.

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