Continuous earthquakes in Kon Tum caused by hydropower projects

SGGP
Initially, scientists have determined that the earthquakes in Kon Plong District are earthquake excitations caused by the water reservoir of the hydropower projects but they are not serious.
Continuous earthquakes in Kon Tum caused by hydropower project ảnh 1 The bed of the Upper Kon Tum hydropower water reservoir in Kon Plong District, Kon Tum Province. (Photo: SGGP)
The Institute of Geophysics, on May 11, said that there was a survey report on earthquakes in Kon Tum Province.

Accordingly, following the direction of Deputy Prime Minister Le Van Thanh, on April 19, the technical delegation consisted of experts and scientists formed by the Institute of Geophysics, the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology, organized field trips to assess earthquake activities in the area of Kon Plong District in Kon Tum Province and surrounding areas.

The earthquakes occurring from March 2021 to April 2022 in the district of Kon Plong, Kon Tum Province, and neighboring areas caused the highest vibration of grade 5 which is not severe enough.

Initially, experts and scientists said that the earthquakes in Kon Plong District were earthquake excitations caused by the water reservoir of the hydropower project. However, to confirm the causes of earthquakes and have a basis to forecast the trend and intensity of earthquakes in the future to assess the possibility of damage to civil works and hydropower plants, it is necessary to carry out detailed surveys, observations, and studies on tectonic geology and seismic regimes in Kon Tum and the surrounding areas.

Continuous earthquakes in Kon Tum caused by hydropower project ảnh 2 Authorities visit people in the earthquake epicenter in Kon Plong District. (Photo: SGGP)
Previous research results on the seismic regime and earthquake activity in Kon Tum and the surrounding area were not detailed enough to be able to assess the cause and level of danger of earthquakes to civil structures and hydroelectricity plants. At the same time, there are no detailed studies of earthquake excitations in the area. Therefore, a detailed study is needed to identify the cause and level of earthquake hazards and put forward appropriate response solutions. In addition, it is necessary to have close coordination of ministries, sectors, localities, and hydroelectricity managing and exploiting units in the area.

Regarding the handling of earthquakes in the area of Kon Plong District in Kon Tum Province, the Ministry of Science and Technology is proposed to develop the task of "Research and assessment of earthquake activity in Kon Tum Province and surrounding areas to serve the prevention and mitigation of natural disasters caused by earthquakes" with the main contents of clarifying the causes of earthquake chains occurring in Kon Plong District and surrounding areas; the relationship between earthquake activity and the storage of water; forecasting earthquake activity trends; assess the risk and develop possible response scenarios.

At the same time, it is necessary to propagate and guide earthquake response skills to authorities and people in Kon Tum Province and surrounding areas.

By Huu Phuc, Van Phuc – Translated by Thuy Doan

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