Strongest earthquakes (since 1900) within a 150 km radius from this earthquake. In March 2019, a government-commissioned research team in South Korea concluded after a year-long study that the 5.4-magnitude earthquake that rattled the city of Pohang in November 2017 was triggered by geothermal power generation. And the earthquakes kept getting bigger as time went by. There may be some truth to that in some places, but the experience in Pohang tells us it’s not the whole story. Immediately after the report was published, the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Energy, which owns the geothermal power generation project, asserted that it had accepted the results reached by the research team and would immediately stop the facility’s operations; however, doing so has not reassured the citizens of Pohang of their safety. Despite the “Phase One” deal, U.S.-China total trade is slipping in importance. Small earthquakes lingered for weeks after the operators turned the pumps off or backed off the pressure. The lessons learned from the Pohang earthquake are not limited to the field of natural sciences. The close race indicates lasting shifts in American politics which will spill over to U.S. international engagements. “We have understood for half a century that this process of pumping up the Earth with high pressure can cause earthquakes,” said Ellsworth, who co-directs the Stanford Center for Induced and Triggered Seismicity and is a professor in the School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences (Stanford Earth). You pump cold water down one, the Earth warms it up, and you extract hot water at the other end. That’s the red light. The selection of a weak Magnitude, a 24 hour delivery on a worldwide list would result in an avalanche of emails (each earthquake will generate an E-mail). This was a particularly dangerous place. How has the report that confirmed the correlation between the earthquake and the geothermal power project affected the victims and residents of Pohang? The fact that the earthquake was a man-made disaster is considerably important to the citizens because, contrary to natural events that are unpredictable and often recurring, a man-made disaster offers a sense of comfort as well as the notion that the situation is controllable and that further earthquakes can be prevented. But the risk is very much higher in the city. Pohang has been suffering from reduced house prices, a decreased number of tourists, population outflow, and the shrinking of local businesses since the earthquake. To read all stories about Stanford science, subscribe to the biweekly Stanford Science Digest. How does enhanced geothermal technology work? As more than 59 deaths were reported soon after a shot, the South Korean government is asking people to trust its health officials that the vaccine is safe. “There is no doubt,” said Stanford geophysicist William Ellsworth. What lies ahead for the Korean Peninsula? If Yes, tell us by using the I FELT IT form behind the earthquake or at the bottom of this page. 2019–2020 Japan–South Korea trade dispute: Japan announces the removal of South Korea from its list of most trusted trading partners, effective on August 28. South Korea has a long history of making vague or intentionally misleading statements on its environmental policies. Chinese state media call the U.S. election chaotic and costly, while social media users can't stop talking about it. About Holding the Central Government Responsible. Workers want the government to guarantee pay for their extra working hours and stop a move to shift management of the industry from schools to local governments. They pump water into the well at high pressure, forcing open existing fractures or creating new ones. According to Stanford Professor William Ellsworth, although an earthquake poses the same amount of “hazard” whether it occurs in a densely populated city or an uninhabited desert, the “risk” is considerably higher in the former. July 21, 2019 by Armand Vervaeck. Operators drilling a geothermal well line it with a steel tube using the same process and technology used to construct an oil well. With more and more citizens participating in the lawsuits, Pohang’s local government is asking the central government and the National Assembly to closely cooperate on special legislation that defines and compensates the victims of the 2017 Pohang earthquake, which is a more efficient solution than being faced with numerous lawsuits. Hazard is a potential source of harm or danger. Chemistry Professor Carolyn Bertozzi says recruiting world-class scientists and engineers and developing ChEM-H into a hub where doctors and researchers can come together will be two of her main goals. Oceanic Transform Faults and Fracture Zones, Copyright - Use in Commercial sites ONLY after written approval, City/Village where you felt the earthquake, Street or suburb (area) where you felt the earthquake, Latitude (area) where you felt the earthquake, Longitude (area) where you felt the earthquake, Tell us your experience and how many seconds the shaking lasted + let us know if your property has been damaged (even slight damage). In practice, authorities and drillers tend to focus more on preventing small earthquakes that can be felt rather than on avoiding the much less likely event of an earthquake strong enough to do serious harm. A new report into the region's digital economy shows the dramatic effects that the pandemic has had on daily life. To date, the government has only provided funds to the earthquake victims based on pre-existing regulations concerning disaster relief, such as 9 million won ($7,735) for a totally destroyed house and 4.5 million won ($3,868) for a half-destroyed house. Problems have also emerged from the citizens’ fear of the geothermal facility that still remains in their city. On a November afternoon in 2017, a magnitude 5.5 earthquake shook Pohang, South Korea, injuring dozens and forcing more than 1,700 of the city’s residents into emergency housing. Juheon Lee is a visiting assistant professor in the Government and Law Department at Lafayette College, the United States. In 2019, there were 65 earthquakes recorded in South Korea, decreasing from 98 in the previous year. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. 500 characters). What led to the big earthquake in Pohang, South Korea? In March 2019, a government-commissioned research team in South Korea concluded after a year-long study that the 5.4-magnitude earthquake that … The violent destruction of a Muslim holy site in India prompted religious studies scholar Anna Bigelow to ask why some communities succumb to violence and others do not. A section of bare rock is left open at the bottom of the well. “Usually we don’t say that in science, but in this case, the evidence is overwhelming.” Ellsworth is among a group of scientists, including Kang-Kun Lee of Seoul National University, who published a perspective piece May 24 in Science outlining lessons from Pohang’s failure. And it comes at a time when the technology could provide a stable, ever-present complement to more finicky wind and solar power as a growing number of nations and U.S. states push to develop low-carbon energy sources. Locals take shelter in a gymnasium after the Pohang earthquake, November 18, 2017. A new analysis suggests flaws in some of the most common ways of trying to minimize the risk of such quakes when harnessing Earth’s heat for energy. Winter smog, religious festivals and election campaigns pose a crucial test of India’s pandemic management. These cookies do not store any personal information. Many geothermal, oil and gas projects have also been guided by a hypothesis that as long as you don’t put more than a certain volume of fluid into a well, you won’t get earthquakes beyond a certain size. We will not share your E-mail with anyone else, it will be used only for earthquake alerts. Therefore, the citizens and the city government alike have been trying to disassociate Pohang from the negative earthquake image by highlighting that the event was technological rather than natural. Therefore, it is important to consider risk rather than hazard with regard to geothermal projects. Amid COVID-19, the South Asian country needs its economic partnerships with France more than ever. And it’s important to consider it through the lens of evolving risk rather than hazard. Most significantly, the central government and the operating company did not sufficiently communicate with the local government and Pohang’s citizens. For example, if there’s a possibility of a magnitude 5.0 earthquake before the project starts, then you can estimate the damages and injuries that might be expected. Enjoying this article? The public panic over flu vaccine safety highlights the potential problems facing a COVID-19 vaccine. The victims asked that the central government apologize and offer compensation, although it still has not formally admitted its responsibility for the incident. If you can create that network of fractures, then you can use two wells to create a heat exchanger. A more selective Magnitude, delivery option and area of your interest will give the best result. Natural geothermal systems are an important source of clean energy from which we may achieve significant benefits if we safely develop the technology. His research focuses on environmental politics, disaster resilience, and social capital, and he has published multiple articles on the social impacts of natural hazards in the East Asian region. Depth and Magnitude updates in the list below. Kim Jong Un’s year did not go as planned. for Us, which produced a network of fractures and activated a previously unknown underground fault, two underground carbon dioxide (CO2) storages. If earthquakes begin to get larger, then you adjust operations. This website uses cookies to improve your experience.