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How Tsunami Happen

The term of tsunami comes from the Japanese which means harbour (tsu) and wave (nami). A tsunamigk is a series of waves generated when water in a lake or the sea is rapidly displaced on a massive scale. A tsunami can be generated when the sea floor abruptly deforms and vertically displaces the overlying water. Such large vertical movements of the earths crust can occur at plate boundaries. Subduction of earthquakes are particularly effective in generating tsunamis, and occur where denser oceanic plates slip under continental plates. As the displaced water mass moves under the influence of gravity to regain its equilibrium, it radiates across the ocean like ripples on a pond. Tsunami always bring great damage. Most of the damage is caused by the huge mass of water behind the initial wave front, as the height of the sea keeps rising fast and floods powerfully into the coastal area.

How Earthquakes Happen

Earthquake is one of the most destroying natural disasters. Unluckily it often happens in several regions. Recently a horrible earthquake has shaken West Sumatra. It has brought great damages. Why did it occur? Do you know how an earthquake happens? Earthquakes are usually caused when rock underground suddenly breaks along a fault. This sudden release of energy causes the seismic waves. It make the ground shake. When two blocks of rock or two plates are rubbing against each other, they stick a little. They don't just slide smoothly. The rocks are still pushing against each other, but not moving. After a while, the rocks break because of all the pressure that's built up. When the rocks break, the earthquake occurs. During the earthquake and afterward, the plates or blocks of rock start moving, and they continue to move until they get stuck again. The spot underground where the rock breaks is called the focus of the earthquake. The place right above the focus is called the epicenter of the earthquake.

How does global warming happen?

Basically the Earths atmosphere (our air) is made up oxygen, nitrogen and a dozen other gases. All of these serve to capture a certain amount of heat and keep the Earth warm. Sunlight hits the Earth and is absorbed as heat. That heat radiates outward back into the air. The molecules in the air absorb and release that heat. Certain molecules that are heavier than others radiate more heat back to earth. Without these molecules from special gases, the Earth would be frozen over at around 14 degrees below zero. This absorption and reflection of heat is known as the greenhouse effect. For just as in a greenhouse heat is trapped and built up by our atmosphere. So then, if all of this is supposed to happen, what is the problem? The problem is that we keep adding to the special mixture of our air too much of certain ingredients such as Carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide or CO2 is essential to nature. Plants use CO2 and sunlight to create sugars and fresh oxygen. Still you might think fine so the plants will grow even better if we have extra CO2. That is what many scientists thought when they first examined global warming. But we only have so many plants, and our oceans, which also absorb CO2, are at maximum capacity. So all this extra Carbon dioxide goes up into the atmosphere where it blocks the release of heat leaving the earth. Gases such as CO2 that absorb heat that otherwise would have expelled to outer space are called greenhouse gases. There are quite a few of them.