A SPATE of earthquakes around the globe have been blamed on the upcoming supermoon, with some warning that more devastation is to come as the moon reaches its peak tonight.
Earthquakes in the Dominican Republic, Chile, Argentina and most notably in New Zealand, one of which left two people dead, have been felt in the last few days, leading to speculation that the gravitational pull from the supermoon is causing fault lines to rupture.
Three huge earthquakes have been felt on New Zealand’s South Island, the biggest measuring 7.5 on the Richter Scale, while a 5.9 tremor hit Argentina’s La Rioja, a 6.3 quake hit the Philippines, a 4.8 earthquake hit the Dominican Republic while Chile experienced a 5.7 tremor.
One user wrote on Facebook: “Of cause [sic] it was a big factor as the moons gravitational pull controls tides around the world and can cause lots of varying forces.”
Another added, referring to the New Zealand tremors: “One has to wonder if there is a connection between the ‘supermoon’ (the moon is currently at it’s closest point to Earth in 68 years) and the 7.5 magnitude earthquake this morning?”
A seismologist chimed into the debate, stating to Kiwi media that the moon can in fact cause earthquakes if it is close enough.
GNS Science Dr John Ristau told newshub.co.nz: “When you get the tidal forces from the moon it does cause increased stresses in the Earth’s crust, so what can happen, potentially, is if you did have a fault that was almost at the very tipping point of rupturing, this could potentially act as the straw that broke the camel’s back.”
The moon is set to reach the closest it has been to Earth since 1948 and will appear 14 per cent bigger and 30 per cent brighter than usual. The next time that our lunar satellite will be this close is 2034.