Scientists Touchy Over Earthquake Information

“This doesn’t make any sense. Have new faults appeared where?

“If all earthquakes occur on faults, then by definition there are a whole bunch of faults under or near CHCH.

“Is this really what we want to say?” Kelvin Berryman.

Correct me if I’m wrong but why would scientists be touchy about what causes Earthquakes. They have been researching and monitoring them for ages after all. Could it be there were no fault lines under Christchurch and if there weren’t than why did such intense and destructive Earthquakes occur?

Scientists were touchy, even defensive, about communicating the science behind Canterbury’s earthquakes, documents show.

Papers given to The Press under the Official Information Act (OIA) reveal discussions between scientists and the Government over scientific material. They also show disagreements.

The response from the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority (Cera) contains emails, draft press releases, reports and meeting minutes but also a lot of withheld information.

An email to a government official from natural hazards platform manager and GNS Science principal scientist Kelvin Berryman the morning after the deadly magnitude-6.3 February 22, 2011, quake showed a push to ensure scientists presented a united front.

“We regard the Lyttelton event as a late and large aftershock of the Sept 4 Darfield earthquake. I will make sure the researchers use this terminology going forward.”

The same day, Berryman addressed the parliamentary education and select committee.

Minutes of the meeting said: “Scientists from the Institute of Geological and Nuclear Sciences (GNS) were hoping that time period when a large aftershock in the vicinity of a magnitude 6 . . . had passed. Sadly, they were mistaken, the committee heard.”

In the minutes next to that, a comment was added by “GNS” saying: “I don’t think ‘mistaken’ is the best choice of words – ‘sadly, CHCH has not been so fortunate’ might be better-balanced words.”

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5 thoughts on “Scientists Touchy Over Earthquake Information

      • well maybe they feel deep in their (wish)bones, there is a moral problem when the biggest supply of money to academia seems always to be connected to the requirement to produce predetermined research results which are complete garbage.
        Academic institutions should have community farms and gardens where EVERYone works a few hours a week.

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