Learning and teaching resources on Cascadia (northern California, Oregon, Washington, and southern British Columbia) earthquakes and tsunamis are provided in this section. The scientific detective story of Cascadia tsunami geology and the orphan tsunami of 1700 observed in Japan are central themes. WE also explain how Global Positioning System (GPS) data demonstrate that the Cascadia continental margin is storing elastic energy that will be released in the next great Cascadia earthquake with the resulting tsunami arriving onshore within 30 minutes. In addition to great subduction zone earthquakes, Cascadia also experiences “deep” earthquakes that occur within the subducting Juan de Fuca Plate and crustal earthquakes on faults that some times lie beneath densely-populated cities. These three kinds of Cascadia earthquakes present three distinct sets of challenges to earthquake preparedness. Finally, we the introduce learners to the newly discovered phenomenon of Episodic Tremor and Slip (ETS) and explain how motions of the Juan de Fuca and North American plates cause ETS in Cascadia.
We recommend that you start learning about Cascadia Earthquakes and Tsunamis using the TOTLE web site by viewing the Cascadia Earthquakes and Tsunamis PowerPoint Presentation. This presentation provides the basic concepts and observations as well as links to teaching resources appropriate for a middle school audience.
A PDF Guide to Cascadia Earthquakes and Tsunamis is also available. This guide is an outline of the Cascadia Earthquakes and Tsunamis topic that contains links to and a table of contents of TOTLE teaching resources on this topic.
This PowerPoint presentation covers basics of Cascadia earthquakes and tsunamis. Before veiwing this PowerPoint presentation, viewers are encouraged to view the PowerPoint presentations under the Introduction to Plate Tectonics and Earthquakes topic.
You are invited to download and modify this PowerPoint presentation for your own classroom teaching.
Roger Groom, Mt Tabor Middle School, developed this activity while working with Becca Walker at UNAVCO in Boulder, Colorado. Through this activity, students can learn about an exciting discovery made possible by invention of high-precision GPS receivers and deployment of these receivers across the Pacific Northwest. This activity can be used to illustrate how invention of new technologies can lead to new scientific discoveries that would have been impossible without the new instruments; a good lesson in how science works.
This PDF provides a brief (12 page) introduction to regional plate tectonics, earthquakes, and volcanoes of the Pacific Northwest. The focus is mainly on the subduction zone (coast to Cascade Mountains) because that is where most of the earthquakes and volcanoes occur, and where tsunamis can be generated. This information was gathered and repurposed by Jenda Johnson and Bob Butler from the Pacific Northwest Seismograph Network (www.pnsn.org/), the U.S.
This file is a zipped collection of PowerPoint Presentation along with associated QuickTime animations. The PowerPoint is 36 slides on the Japan magnitude 9.0 earthquake and resulting tsunami with comparisons to Cascadia past and future great earthquakes and tsunamis. You are welcome to download the zipped archive and use any or all elements for your own educational purposes. Please acknowledge Teachers on the Leading Edge as the source.
This PowerPoint presentation contains GPS time series plots for 10 Plate Boundary Observatory stations across the states of Washington and Oregon. These include four coastal stations (Neah Bay, Pacific Beach, Tillamook, and Newport); three stations in the urban corridor (Tumwater, Kelso, and Corvallis); and three stations located east of the Cascade Mountains (Othello, Wasco, and La Grande). Line fits to the north and east components of motion of these stations are shown and rates of north and east motion are provided for each station.
The basics of reading GPS time series plots are explained in this step wise, thorough, and nicely illustrated PowerPoint presentation developed by Shelley Olds at UNAVCO. This PowerPoint presentation can be used to support the Cascadia GPS Gumdrop Lesson Plan or simply for additional information for the teacher.