A series of significant May earthquakes and their aftershocks are being examined by seismologists, who say Alaska is markedly above its usual rate of earthquakes for the month.
Alaska Earthquake Center seismologist Natalia Ruppert said Alaska typically experiences a "background level" of 35,000 earthquakes each year, plus any significant quakes and their aftershocks.
The center typically documents about 3,000 quakes statewide in a month — but May has been well ahead of that pace, Ruppert said.
"Right now, with the aftershocks, we recorded close to the monthly average in just the first 10 days," Ruppert said.
The catalog of May temblors as of Wednesday included at least three larger than a 6 on the Richter scale; seven larger than a 5 and 50 larger than a 4, according to an overview compiled by the center's Ian Dickson.
The month began with a 6.2 quake and a 6.3 aftershock on May 1 under the Haines Highway in Canada that rattled much of Southcentral Alaska, causing significant damage in the Canadian city of Whitehorse.
State seismologist Michael West said the quake struck along the Denali fault line, which extends from Southeast through Canada into the Alaska Range.
More than 800 aftershocks had been detected from the Southeast quake by Wednesday, Dickson wrote. The state also saw a 5.2 quake 10 miles north of Ninilchik on May 6 that was felt in Valdez and Palmer, as well as a 3.8 shaker the following day northeast of the Fort Knox Gold Mine that was felt in Fairbanks.
On Monday, a pair of 5.5 temblors off Adak in the Aleutian Islands built to a 6.2 quake, downgraded from a preliminary magnitude of 6.4, although no damage reports were received.
Ruppert said some quakes strike along fault lines known to be more active. Others, however, occur after buildups of seismic tension that can take centuries.
"We know some large-scale tectonic features in the state," Ruppert said. "We know that almost all significant earthquakes are related to the subduction zone, and there are also some Interior faults that are capable of producing large-scale earthquakes — but we don't know everything."
The Aleutian Islands quakes were products of a known earthquake zone near Tanaga Island and its associated volcano 62 miles west of Adak, Ruppert said, where high rates of tectonic plate movement generate high levels of activity.
"We've seen it before — we've seen it in 2008, the last time was a little before in 2004," Ruppert said. "Once we saw this strong earthquake, we knew we could expect some strong aftershocks because we've seen it before."
Earthquakes and volcanic eruptions can sometimes occur together, Ruppert said, so the Alaska Volcano Observatory monitored the volcano for any subsequent activity — but it "didn't find any" at Tanaga or other nearby volcanoes.
Already the climate change has raised concern among the people. Now the recent news of volcanoes erupting all over the world is baffling and may make things even more serious. Italy’s Mount Etna as of late erupted with a large amount of magma amid what is presently its second emission in the most recent year. Mount Etna is been referred to as Europe’s greatest and most capable spring of gushing lava, and its emission represents a peril to air activity and conceivably the encompassing towns and homes on the lower inclines of the well of lava.
Despite the fact that Mount Etna is the most recent fountain of liquid magma to stand out as truly newsworthy, there are various different emissions happening everywhere throughout the world. There has been news about volcanic eruptions from all over the planet. India’s only volcano is dynamic again after having been dormant for 150 years, and four of Iceland’s fundamental volcanoes are speculated to erupt soon. As indicated by Volcano Discovery, 35 volcanoes are either as of now ejecting at this moment or just as of late emitted everywhere throughout the world. There are significantly more volcanoes with eruption notices and huge amounts of different volcanoes that are dynamic, which means they could, in fact, emit at any moment.
Mount Etna eruption was the most recent one. On February 27, 2017, the dynamic fountain of liquid magma, situated on the Eastern bank of Sicily, Italy, emitted. The volcano is 3,329 meters tall which makes is the biggest active volcano in Europe. As per geophysicist Páll Einarsson, four of Iceland’s primary volcanoes are demonstrating increasingly movement, showing that they will emit soon. One of these volcanoes, Katla, is showing the signs of been the most active in 40 years.
In a shocking event, this month, Indonesia’s Mount Sinabung in north Sumatra region erupted 7 times that too in one day. Sightseers and local people in the range are wearing eye, mouth, and face covers keeping in mind the end goal to counteract guide presentation to the volcanic slag, and a large number of villagers were uprooted. At the season of the emission, Mount Sinabung spoke to the tenth volcanic ejection through the span of seven days.
There is a possibility that these volcanic eruptions may not have been happening due to the geographic area since Iceland and Indonesia are to a great degree far separated. Unmistakably something is bringing about an expansion in overall seismic movement.