Sunday, 28 February 2010


Earthquakes - Erdbeben - and other natural disasters have been in the news rather too often in recent months. When you are learning German it's often useful to be able to talk about such things - their affect on people and their causes. carries an interesting article about the earthquake in Chile Trümmer, Schreie, Verzweiflung. It looks like reality caught up with a Chilean reality show. There is also criticism of the liberalisation of building regulations in Chile.

All the German newspaper websites are reporting this earthquake which has left hundreds dead. There are also fears of a tsunami in the Pacific, particularly as there was another quake centred near Okinawa, the southern most Japanese island. I suspect we'll be worrying about the affect on copper production since Chile produces more than a third of the world's copper. The following quote about the Pacific ring-of-fire is from FAZ and you can view their report here

Chile liegt am sogenannten „Pazifischen Feuerring“, einem hufeisenförmigen Vulkangürtel am Rande des Pazifiks. Etwa 90 Prozent der Erdbeben weltweit ereignen sich innerhalb des Feuerrings.

Coverage in Spiegel online includes some information in the sidebar about die Richterskala and Erdbebenwelle (Tsunami) and they have a forum where you can discuss Tsunamis - sind wir richtig gerüstet?

Quarks & Co the science series from WDR Fernsehen has covered Erdbeben in the past. You can download a PDF file from the broadcast in 2008. The video Erdbeben – wenn die Erde zuschlägt is a 60MB download. I found these broadcasts very accessible and well presented. Having the PDF file means you can look up any unfamiliar vocabulary. For anyone wishing to explore the science a little more than try the Geoforschungszentrum Potsdam which has English as well as German pages.

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