Nepal: Facts, Opinions, and an unforgettable video

The massive earthquake that shattered Nepal on Saturday came as no surprise to anyone. Christine Gibson, a doctor volunteering in Nepal when the disaster struck, urges people to help with donations to the Patan hospital, Doctors Without Borders, or the Red Cross. Photo by Christine Gibson © 2015

Nepal’s Predictable Agony. By Deborah Jones

The massive earthquake that shattered Nepal on April 25, 20115, came as no surprise to anyone. The country sits atop one of the world’s most seismically dangerous places. There have been countless warnings about Nepal’s rickety infrastructure, haphazard housing, lax building codes, and rampant urban development. There was even a warning a few weeks ago that a quake was imminent, precisely where it occurred.


image-20150427-18138-1ovy9gzThe science behind the Nepal earthquake. By Mike Sandiford, CP Rajendran, and Kristin Morell

Nepal is particularly prone to earthquakes. It sits on the boundary of two massive tectonic plates – the Indo-Australian and Asian plates. It is the collision of these plates that has produced the Himalaya mountains, and with them, earthquakes. The April 25 quake measured 7.8 on the moment magnitude scale, the largest since the 1934 Bihar quake, which measured 8.2 and killed around 10,000 people. Another quake in Kashmir in 2005, measuring 7.6, killed around 80,000 people. These quakes are a dramatic manifestation of the ongoing convergence between the Indo-Australian and Asian tectonic plates that has progressively built the Himalayas over the last 50 million years.



This video was shot by hikers on Everest just as an avalanche swept onto their camp. It was posted to YouTube by German climber Jost Kobusch;  it’s not clear if he was one of the climbers. 


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