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Changing scales: from Earth to humans

This week we’ve seen extreme versions of four types of events; earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis and floods

The regular versions of these events will have probably been well known to us as they are a frequent occurrence on our planet.

Whether you’ve experienced these events or not, you are likely to have heard them reported about in other parts of the world.

The extreme versions however are altogether different and at the beginning of the week we defined them as:


A rare event over the course of our planet’s history and of a size or scale that has either none or very few comparative events.

We’ve looked at several examples of these events and seen the big changes they’ve brought about on our planet.

These events give us fascinating insight into Earth’s history and development into the planet we see today. They also show us that our planet is dynamic and is ever changing.

Just like the events we saw in Week 1, the sheer magnitude of the events we’ve looked at is hard for us to comprehend.

In Week 3, we’ll start to shift our focus closer to the present day and a human perspective on these events. We’ll explore the risk and hazard of these types of events and preparing for future events.

We hope you enjoyed Week 2, if you have any comments or questions on the week please add these in the comments below.

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This article is from the free online course:

Extreme Geological Events

Cardiff University

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