Earthquake: Global Warming

By: Emily Ho

According to UNESCO, an earthquake is defined as ‘a violent tremor of the earth’s crust which originates naturally and below the surface.’

An earthquake with magnitude 9.0 hit Japan just recently. Previously this year, New Zealand, Chile, Southwestern Pakistan, and Haiti also received some significant rattles. Some say that the number of earthquakes haven’t increased; it’s just that information is more accessible now that we’re more aware of what’s going on.

However, I feel that the Mother Nature is trying to say something. Sure earthquakes have nothing to do with the release of CO2 directly or the amount of plastic we use. After a brief search, I’ve discovered that melting ice caps do in fact affect seismic activities:

“When glaciers begin to melt—as they are doing now at an increasingly rapid rate due to global warming—that pressure is reduced and eventually released.
“What happens is the weight of this thick ice puts a lot of stress on the earth,” said Patrick Wu, a geologist at the University of Alberta in Canada, in an interview with the Canadian Press. “The weight sort of suppresses the earthquakes, but when you melt the ice the earthquakes get triggered.” ”

So what if science is wrong? Fifty-percent of statistics is false anyways. But what if it is true? Why is it that some people still deny global warming or even play a blind eye? Are people’s own lives more important that they have no consideration what so ever for the earth, other people, or even for future generations?

I admit that sometimes I do feel ‘environmentalism’ to be too overwhelming and ‘unrealistic’ because the immediate effects are not around or affecting me. Not seeing it makes it even less important. But it’s the reason that it is so critical to stay in tune to know how to change the conditions through small steps that ‘environmentalism’ is nearly everywhere.

It’s okay to live in a student house with all inclusive rent but it’s not okay to forget that utilities are still natural resources that will eventually run out. It’s okay to be an engineer with great dreams to build purifying systems but it’s not okay to waste them now thinking you’ll save it later. It’s okay to be stressed about school work but it’s definitely not okay to take one hour showers to relieve your anxiety.

By the way, it’s extremely inappropriate to put ‘Pearl Harbour’ as a facebook status in response to the earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan.

You can donate and you can pray. What is also important is to realize the lessons to be learned and recognize that there is a problem that lays not in nature but in human beings ourselves disrupting the cycles of nature.