Credit USGS; Almost 800 quakes mag 4 or higher with an astonishing 26 above mag 6 or higher have struck the eastern margin of the Australia plate since the first day of 2021 resulting in the biggest major quake total, mag 6 or higher in the first 65 days of the year.
By Gary Walton
In all 42 major quakes, mag 6 or higher have rocked the planet in just 65 days and we could be well on the way to recording the highest number ever recorded in a year which was 207 in 2011, the year of the Fukushima disaster. What makes the incredible number even more exciting is that the majority of the major quakes have been located along the eastern margin of the Australia plate. 27 of them in fact. What makes this total more incredible is that in the same period in 1921, a hundred years ago only 7 major quakes, mag 6 or higher had been recorded globally according to the USGS Data Base. Something big could well be about to unfold along with the "record-breaking" start to the year along the eastern margin of the Australia plate and the timing could well be crucial with the 10th anniversary of the Fukushima disaster next week.
Of the 42 major quakes recorded this year only two, a mag 6.2 recorded in Mongolia in January and a mag 6.3 recorded in Grecce earlier this month have been outside the Pacific Ring Of Fire. Stranger still 36 of the 42 have been on the Western side of the Pacific Ring leaving the Western Coast of the US still waiting for the "big one!"
To emphasise the incredible total of major quakes so far this year, we have to go back to earlier years for comparison. Last year in the same period during the dark beginning of 2020 a total of 24 major quakes, mag 6 or higher had been recorded around the globe, coincidently not one recorded along the eastern margin of the Australia plate which is dominating this year's activity. Back in 2019, just 20 major quakes had been reported up to March the 6th, just 50% of this year's total. In 2018, 24 major quakes had been reported and in 2017, just 15, 2017 went on to record the lowest amount of major quakes this century. In 2016, 24 and in 2015, just 18. Coincidentally, the highest number ever recorded in a year was 207 in 2011, the year of the Fukushima disaster, however, in that year up to March the 6th only 30 major quakes, mag 6 or higher had been recorded.
Seismotectonics of the Eastern Margin of the Australia Plate