Over 20,000 earthquakes hit New Zealand every year; know why country is prone to jolts?

New Zealand Earthquake: Many specialists have provided an explanation for why this natural calamity is so often in the "land of earthquakes".

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The Kermadec Islands region, which is located north of New Zealand, experienced an earthquake on Thursday with a magnitude of 7.1, according to a USGS statement. At a depth of 10 kilometres, the disaster occurred. Coastal areas within 300 kilometres of the epicentre may see dangerous tsunami waves, the agency warns in a separate statement. However, as per National Emergency Management Agency, there is no tsunami risk for New Zealand.

Why is New Zealand so earthquake-prone?

Earthquakes occur frequently, ranging in intensity from barely audible to catastrophic high-magnitude seismic events that claim thousands of lives. Many specialists have provided an explanation for why this natural calamity is so often in the "land of earthquakes".

The tectonic plates of the Pacific and Australia meet at Aotearoa New Zealand. These plates are striking one another with such force that one is slowly grinding over, beneath, or next to the other. A fault explodes as the pressure causes the fragile crust to give way, setting off an earthquake.

More than 20,000 earthquakes are recorded in New Zealand annually by GNS Science. As tectonic plates move in relation to one another, energy accumulates in certain regions, which is why earthquakes are frequently centred there. The energy's release is symbolised by earthquakes, according to ScienceBlogs.

California and New Zealand both rest on plate boundaries that are part of the Pacific Plate, although they do so in very distinct locations and ways. The Pacific plate, which rotates anticlockwise and rubs against the plate that forms that region of the US continent, surrounds California on the northeastern edge.

This is quite energising and can cause significant earth movements, enormously intricate fault networks, and numerous earthquakes. But that falls short in comparison to what occurs in New Zealand, Japan, and a number of other areas.

READ | Earthquake of magnitude 7.1 jolts New Zealand's Kermadec Islands, tsunami alert sounded


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