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Earthquake Review-Forecast for August-September 2015
No 6.8 magnitude or larger earthquakes for August 2015
Something's Afoot (a lack of big earthquakes)
This time around, the monthly review and forecast report takes its lead story from an English lad named Jamie Gurney. His insights into geology and seismology caught my attention on a Facebook group called “Earthquake Reporting” ( https://www.facebook.com/groups/158001717702273/ ). I then began following him on his twitter page devoted to seismology ( https://twitter.com/UKEQ_Bulletin/favorites ) which will be a year old in mid September of 2015.
From that twitter page I read a few recent tweets by him devoted to an anomaly which we are presently in the midst of. Using a German site ( http://geofon.gfz-potsdam.de/eqinfo/list.php ) that records earthquake activity, he reported that there have been four gaps of at least 90 days since the start of 2014 (technically it started after a 7.5M earthquake on 17 November 2013), where there were no 7.0 magnitude or larger earthquakes occurring. That is just in 20 months time. If we look at the three years just before 2014 (beginning at the start of 2011), there was only one such gap during that time.
Since that German site tends to have estimates a tad smaller than those of the USGS in the U.S., I looked at the same periods at the USGS site using earthquakes of at least 7.1 magnitude and found the results to be the same. I then looked at the monthly average occurrences of such sized quakes for an 18 year period beginning in 1992, for a very active 4 year period beginning in 2010, and the current period beginning in the year 2014.
Based on the 18 year period the average comes out to 1.0185 such quakes per month. The monthly average for the 4 year period starting just after the 18 year period came out to 1.3125 (28.86% above average). For the 20 months beginning at the start of 2014, the average came out to 0.9 (11.64% below average).
20 months of extreme variability (Seismic Roller Coaster)
Another aspect to this peculiarity in activity is that, of the 18 quakes during that 20 month period (through the end of August 2015), 15 of those 18 quakes occurred during record bursts of seismic events in April 2014 and then the period that began with the Nepal disaster on April 25, 2015 and ended with the deep earthquake off the coast of Japan on May 30, 2015. There was a 7.8 magnitude quake on both of those last two dates but no earthquakes of 7.1 magnitude or larger has occurred for the 3 months following that last earthquake.
In other words, things have been blowing hot and cold during those recent 20 months, and with the last 3 months looking particularly inactive, it would seem that the occurrence of the larger earthquakes are likely to rise again in the near future. Coincidentally, the last 11 days of September and into October (particularly the 4th through the 7th), appear to indicate (based on my algorithm of angles between solar system objects that often parallel significant seismic events) that things will pick up during that period of time.
Smaller seismic events of note during August 2015:
There was a 4.0 magnitude earthquake in Piedmont, California on August 17 (located in the East Bay or part of the San Francisco Bay region). This earthquake was on the Hayward fault, as was another 4.0 magnitude event in Fremont, California, which occurred 27 days prior. A larger earthquake may be brewing for the near future. What I am expecting is a magnitude 5.0-5.9 earthquake, perhaps within the next few weeks or months, which could be a fore-shock to an earthquake approaching 7.0 in magnitude in the next few months to years.
A few days before this, on the 13th and 14th of August, there were two quakes of 4.0 and 4.2 in northern Oklahoma (near the Kansas border) and northern Nevada (near the Oregon border).
I have pointed out in the July-August Review-Forecast, that there has been a similar pattern of quakes of about their size (actually those were a bit stronger or in the 4.2-4.5 magnitude range) in these three areas within a few days of each other that occurred 3 months before and after the Nepal earthquake of April 25, 2015. There was also an uptick in worldwide seismic activity for earthquakes of at least 6.8 magnitude at each of the two times when these patterns emerged. The month of August 2015 did not have any earthquakes of at least 6.8 magnitude, but there were two of 6.6 magnitude (per the USGS) on the 10th and 15th of August (in the Solomon Islands, east of Papua New Guinea). If I have discovered a repeating pattern, then there may be at least one other earthquake, somewhere in the world, of at least the mid 7's in magnitude coming in the middle of November of 2015.
The Forecast for September 2015:
This time around, my algorithm came up with seismic windows which take up exactly 50% of the month of September 2015. Of these windows, there is a very large one that dominates the last 11 days of the month. Within that window are several peaks of note that may reflect the coming of a few significant events (earthquakes of at least 6.8 magnitude). One in particular, near the end of the month, on the 29th, is particularly strong and may even indicate an earthquake of at least 7.1 magnitude to come at that time. Here are the dates for the start and end of each window with the Greenwich Mean Time (GMT or Universal Time; UT) in decimal form (09/08.1= 2.4 hours past midnight of the 8th, GMT). The date ranges are then followed by potential epicenter locations (based on peaks in Eclipse Aspect Values for Eclipses that occurred within the past few years).
2015-09/01.0 – 09/03.9 Kamchatka, Aleutian Islands, New Zealand, southern Chile, Mexico, Papua New Guinea (PNG), Solomon Islands, Nepal.
2015-09/08.1 – 09/08.7 same as above
2015-09/12.25 – 09/12.75 PNG, Solomon Islands, Iran, Kamchatka.
2015-09/20.0 – 10/01.0 same as above +Sumatra, Nepal, India, Iraq, Turkey, Iceland.
Peak times during that last window to watch:
2015-09/23 1245UT +-20hrs (33% chance of 6.8 magnitude or larger quake).
2015-09/27 0000UT +-20hrs (ditto)
2015-09/29 0100UT +-20hrs (50% chance of 6.8 magnitude or larger quake).
© 2015 Joseph Ritrovato