• Researchers predict 40% probability of a 7.1 magnitude earthquake in Nigeria by 2028, seek to better understand active regional tectonics
Episodes of earthquakes in and around Abuja, Niger, Kaduna, Kwara, Saki in Oyo and Ile Ife in Osun have left telltale signs of a reappearance.
The Guardian reliably gathered that unreported seismic activity in early November 2021 caught the attention of the National Assembly and the Presidency.
Indeed, Abuja has recently become a hotbed of tremors. The last officially reported episode took place on November 1, 2018. An earlier September 5, 2018 event that lasted for three days in Mpape and parts of Maitama District in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) left not only residents, but also the whole country. fearing that an earthquake would occur.
Residents of Abuja, Saki in Oyo and Ife in Osun who confirmed the incidents said the tremors lasted for days. “It didn’t look good. The whole place was shaking, ”Jimoh Abba told The Guardian on Monday.
The Guardian has reliably estimated that the federal government may soon form an emergency committee to tackle regular earthquakes in Nigeria.
Scientists from the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) and sources in the National Assembly have confirmed the earthquakes to the Guardian.
It has been reliably established that the Senate Science and Technology Committee was already seeking corrective action and assurances before making the announcement to Nigerians.
In addition, researchers at the Department of Civil Engineering at Covenant University, Ota, Ogun State, have predicted the possibility of a 7.1 magnitude earthquake in Nigeria by 2028.
The study titled “Probabilistic Analysis of Seismic Hazards in Nigeria: The Extent of the Devastating Future Earthquake” was published in the journal IOP Conf. Series: Materials Science and Engineering.
The researchers concluded: “The results of this assessment have established that Nigeria is at risk of devastating earthquakes in the future. These probable earthquake magnitudes can reach 6.0 in 2020; 6.5 between 2021 and 2022; 7.0 between 2025 and 2026 and 7.1 in 2028. The probability of these events occurring during the forecast year is 36.79%. The probability that a
A 7.1 magnitude earthquake will also occur from 2019 to 2028 and is between 9% and 36.79%.
“It is therefore recommended that the Nigerian authority begin to enforce the law regarding seismic considerations in structural designs in places such as the South West region which has seen most of the seismic events in the past. It is also recommended that activities such as heavy rock blasting be moved to non-residential locations to reduce seismic stimulation in residential areas.
Depending on the earthquake magnitude scale, magnitudes of 5.5 to 6.0 will cause slight damage to buildings and other structures; 6.1 to 6.9 can cause a lot of damage in densely populated areas; Magnitudes 7.0 to 7.9 are major earthquakes with severe damage; and a magnitude of 8.0 or greater is a large earthquake and can totally destroy communities near the epicenter.
According to studies, earthquakes occur due to the sudden release of energy accumulated in rocks. Other activities on the earth’s surface can also stimulate earthquakes. Some of these activities include drilling boreholes and constructing heavy buildings.
Simply put, an earthquake is a sudden shaking of the ground that causes destruction, as a result of movement within the earth’s crust or volcanic action. It is of a lower magnitude compared to an earthquake. Shakes and earthquakes are measured with a seismograph.
An earthquake, on the other hand, refers to the violent shaking of the Earth’s surface, resulting from the sudden release of energy in the Earth’s lithosphere that creates seismic waves.
Earthquakes can range from those that are so weak that they cannot be felt, to those severe enough to topple people and destroy entire cities.
A large earthquake from afar will look like a slight bump followed a few seconds later by stronger rolling shakes that may look like sharp tremors for a little while.
A small earthquake nearby will look like a small sharp shake followed by a few stronger sharp shakes that pass quickly.
A recent study published in the September 2021 edition of the journals Frontiers in Earth Science and Advances in African Earth Sciences and titled “On the Origin of Orphan Tremors and Interpolate Seismicity in Western Africa” confirmed the occurrence of tremors in Nigeria.
The researchers concluded, “We investigated the source of the earthquakes reported from September 5-7, 2018 in the Abuja region of central Nigeria. We have reviewed previous seismic activity in the region, speculated on how the tremors are related to single teleseismic events, or may be related to other alternative explanations, i.e. triggered by l anthropology, or whether regional tectonics and local geology could have made the region more vulnerable. to triggered fault rupture and to the amplification of seismic tremors. We have explored the spatial and temporal origins of tremors using seismology and investigated basement structure and surface deformation using aeromagnetic and SAR data. We found the strongest support for the seismicity linked to anthropogenic groundwater extraction. Although other hypotheses cannot be completely ruled out for the case study presented here, we emphasize that more work is needed to establish a better understanding of the potential links between the inherited structure of the subsoil, the active regional tectonics. and disturbances from anthropogenic stress.
The researchers are from the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA; Department of Geosciences, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, USA; Goergen Institute for Data Science, University of Rochester, Rochester, NY, USA; Department of Geology, Obafemi Awolowo University (OUA), Ife, Osun State, Nigeria; and School of Geology and Geophysics, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, USA.
Meanwhile, NASRDA warned in 2018 that Nigeria should be prepared for the earthquake experience, which should prompt authorities to think and plan now.
The expected date of 20 years from 2008 of an earthquake in Nigeria is not far off, as signs have started to emerge through the Abuja earthquake.
Although the Emergency Management Agency of Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory Abuja has confirmed reports of the earthquake in affected areas, it has suggested that it may have come from the movement of the earth or from the earthquake. blasting of rocks or mining operations. in the area, while urging residents to remain calm and hide under tables if they are inside the house, or to stay away from buildings if they are outside.
NASRDA had told reporters that it had established that the November 1, 2018 earthquake in parts of Abuja was a weak event and not a strong one to cause structural damage.
The Space Agency argued that aftershocks to a main event could continue to occur in days, weeks and even months depending on the nature of the outage.
The Space Agency has revealed that the results of previous surveys from its Center for Geodesy and Geodynamics in Toro have shown that low magnitude earthquakes of 3.5 or less have a high probability of occurring in Nigeria at the future.
He said, however, that there is a need to have seismic monitoring equipment and other relevant monitoring equipment in all areas where earthquakes have been observed for effective monitoring of seismic activities.
In a recent publication in a scholarly journal, the scientist said, “At exactly 03:10 GMT on September 11, 2009, an earthquake occurred in the vicinity of Abeokuta, Ogun State. This earthquake was felt mainly in most parts of Ogun State and parts of Lagos State. Three seismic stations of the network of the Center of Geodynamics and Geodesy (CGG) in Nigeria, recorded this event. Since 2008, when the CGG network started, the event of September 11 was the first major shock recorded in an instrumental way. Although there have been many earthquakes (minor to major) in the past in this part of the country and other regions, but there have been no local instrumental records to analyze seismicity (vulnerability earthquakes) in the region.
NARSDA researchers said the quake is a sign that Nigeria is not immune to the earthquake’s occurrence. One of the researchers from the geology department at Obafemi Awolowo University (OUA), Ile Ife, Osun State, Dr Abraham Adekunle Adepetumi had told the Guardian that the country was not in the region to earthquake proof.
Predicting the possibility of a long-term earthquake for the southwest, he said: “The empirical model of earthquake recurrence – a time-dependent model – has been used to predict probabilistic occurrences of earthquakes in Ijebu-Ode and its surroundings between 2008 and 2028.
“This probability model takes the average recurrence intervals and the standard deviation of historical seismic events in that area to determine the probability of earthquakes occurrence for the years predicted.”