04/22/2022, 15.12
VIETNAM
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Earth Day, earthquake warning in Kon Tum the dam area

by Thanh Thuy

Since early 2021, as many as 169 quakes were reported in Kon Plông, a district with many hydroelectric plants. For geophysics experts, there is a link between large-scale water accumulation and earthquakes.

Kon Tum (AsiaNews) – Kon Tum province recorded 169 earthquakes with intensity ranging from 2.5 to 4.5 on the Richter scale, between April 2021 and April 2022, this according to Vietnam’s Institute of Geophysics (IGP).

Between 15 and 18 April this year, as many as 22 earthquakes were reported in Kon Plông district, which has a number of hydroelectric dams. For this reason, the IGP has set up an observation station to better monitor the phenomenon.

Meanwhile, while the world celebrates Earth Day today, the Vietnamese try to cope with ongoing quakes. On Monday, a 4.5 earthquake struck Đăk Tăng municipality, causing fear and panic.

For Anh Ngiyễn Xuân, director of Viet Nam Geophysics, the presence of geological faults and the accumulation of water from large hydroelectric dams are factors causing earthquakes,

Three quakes struck ​​the Sông Trang 2 Hydropower dam in Bắc Trà Mi, a district in Quảng Nam province, the strongest at 3.2 on the Richter scale in 2016.

“In the past few days, earthquakes have occurred continuously in Kon Tum province,” said Hoài Trần Quang, director general of the Department of Natural Disaster Prevention and Control. “Most likely, these earthquakes were caused by water-storage hydroelectricity”.

For this reason, Hoài suggested that local hydroelectric plants not store water when it rains unseasonably. In addition, the IGP will provide information on earthquake forecasts to local authorities in Kon Tum province.

The authorities also plan to work out measures to be taken with dam management and local businesses to limit the impact of earthquakes on local communities. However, some activists are sceptical. “These companies today pursue profits more than human life,” they told AsiaNews.

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