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EPSC 185 (8)
John Stix (4)
Midterm

# Midterm Practice

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School
Department
Earth & Planetary Sciences
Course
EPSC 185
Professor
John Stix
Semester
Fall

Description
Basics 1) Explain the difference between hazard, risk and vulnerability?  Hazard – Potential threat to humans and their welfare  Risk – Probability of loss (deaths, injuries, damage, disruption of economic activity) as a result of a particular natural event  Vulnerability – Potential loss, or degree of loss, from the event o 0 = no damage o 1 = total loss 2) What is a DISASTER?  Disaster – A hazardous event affecting a community in an adverse way such that essential social structures and functions are disrupted. 3) What is the difference between Prediction/Forecasting and Mitigation?  Prediction & Forecasting – statement that a particular natural hazard will occur with a given probability during a certain time frame in a specified geographic area.  Mitigation – Efforts to reduce or minimize the effects of natural hazards on a community Mitigation usually occurs after a prediction/forecast is made. “mitigate losses” 4) Are Natural Disasters predictable?  Mother nature is non-deterministic  Individual events are inherently unpredictable  Thus, we use statistics such as probabilities based on past trends – since we do not fully understand many natural processes. 5) What is a Recurrence Interval?  Recurrence interval – Average time interval between the occurrence of two events of given magnitude  i.e. a flood of 6 meters which happens once every 50 years. (Recurrence interval of 50 years)… means that there is a 1 in 50 chance that such a flood will occur in any one year. ~Earthquakes~ 10/10/2012 6:37:00 AM 1) What is an earthquake?  The shaking or vibration of the ground 2) Where do earthquakes mainly occur?  Along plate boundaries 3) What is plate tectonics?  The study of the movement of plates 4) How many types of plate boundaries are there? What are they?  3 Types: o Divergent o Convergent o Transform 5) Where do the most powerful and destructive earthquakes occur?  The most powerful earthquakes occur at convergent margins  They can either be caused by a subduction zone, wherein a heavier oceanic plate converges and then submerges under a lighter continental plate OR it can occur when 2 continental plates collide, in which their buoyancy creates compression pressures that trigger an earthquake 6) What happens at a divergent plate margin?  Plates are being CREATED  2 plates move away from each other and magma from the lithosphere rises and cools creating new crust.  The movement of plates away from each other is known as rifting  VOLCANISM is a common occurrence at divergent plate margins, because the splitting and thinning of plates that are moving away from each other allows magma to reach the surface, stimulating volcanic activity. 7) What are convergent margins? Explain the different types that can occur.  Convergent margins occur when two plates slide into each other  Plates are being DESTROYED  There are 2 types of convergent margins: o Oceanic plate converges with a continental plate. The heavier, denser, oceanic plate slides under the lighter, buoyant continental plate  SUBDUCTION ZONE o Two continental plates converge into each other. Since they are both light and buoyant, they compress at a collision zone  Earthquakes that occur at convergent margins are large and destructive 8) What is a transform margin?  A transform margin is a plate boundary in which 2 plates slide past each other, neither creating nor destroying plates.  The San Andreas Fault is a transform boundary 9) Explain what the Pacific Rim of Fire is.  It is an area circulating around the pacific ocean from southeast asia up and around down to the south western coast of South America  This area has the most seismic and volcanic activity – mainly due to the Subduction zones (oceanic plates converging onto continental plates)  Very explosive, dangerious seismic and volcanic activity occurs on this rim. 10) What is the relationship between faults and earthquakes?  Earthquakes usually occur along fault lines  Faults are planes of weakness along which the Earth has been broken  Movements on a fault can be either slow (ductile deformation) or fast (brittle fracture) o A fast movement on a fault is what results in earthquakes. 11) What are the 3 types of dominantly vertical faults  1) Normal Fault – Tensional Forces  2) Reverse Fault – Horizontal Compression  3) Blind Thrust Fault – Horizontal Compression 12) What are horizontal faults?  Strike-Slip Faults o They are a small-scale version of transform margins  Left-Lateral (Sinistral) o Strike is to the left and Slip is to the right  Right-Lateral (Dextral) o Strike is to the right and Slip is to the left 13) What is the difference between a focus and an epicenter?  The focus of an earthquake is the point of origin of the earthquake along the fault line  The epicenter is the vertical projection of the fault line on the earth’s surface. 14) What is Elastic Rebound Theory?  Refers to how rocks return back to their original shape and stress level after an earthquake  Before fault rupture, rock deforms  after rupture, rocks return to their original shape and stress level.  But not very useful for predictions 15) Explain Richter magnitudes.  Measures the MAXIMUM AMPLITUDES of ground shaking during seismic activity  It is a logarithmic scale 16) How often do earthquakes occur? And at what magnitudes?  There are ~800,000 earthquakes a year of magnitude 2.0-3.4 (so most aren’t even noticed by humans)  An earthquake of magnitude 8 or higher occurs once in every 5-10 years (those people notice) 17) What are some factors that affect the destructiveness of an earthquake?  Depth  Earthquake magnitude  Strength of buildings  Nature of soil or bedrock upon which buildings are placed  Other local conditions  Distance to Epicenter 18) What is the San Andreas Fault? (Type of Plate Margin) th 19) Briefly describe the earthquake of April 18 , 1906. 20) Is it likely that there will be another big earthquake in the San Francisco Bay area within the next 20 years? 21) What is Cascadia? 22) Why does Quebec have so much seismic activity? 23) What are some effects of earthquakes? 24) List some appropriate building codes which can reduce earthquake damage. 25) What are signs of warning for an earthquake? %Hurricanes% 10/10/2012 6:37:00 AM A hurricane is a warm core, low pressure system with no front attached, that develops over tropical or subtropical waters characterized by wind speeds of at least 74mph. 1) What are economic costs of hurricanes?  Rebuilding of damaged infrastructure  Cost of evacuation  Impact on energy production  Cost of severe coastal erosion 2) What’s the difference between a hurricane, typhoon and cyclone?  LOCATION o Hurricane – Atlantic/Eastern Pacific o Typhoon – Western Pacific o Cyclone – Indian Ocean 3) Briefly list or discuss the stages of a tropical cyclone  Tropical Depression – the first sign of an organized circulation  Tropical Storm – System becomes named, some indication of a symmetric structure  Hurricane/Typhoon – Eye forms + Spiral Rainbands form 4) What is a warm core?  Warmest air is located at the center of the storm (the eye) 5) Discuss why there are few, if any, hurricanes along the coastal regions of South America?  The ocean temperatures are too cold 
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