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2017 Pohang earthquake probably caused by geothermal plant

Science 11:04 March 20, 2019

SEOUL, March 20 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's second-most destructive earthquake, which struck the southeastern city of Pohang in 2017, was probably triggered by an experimental geothermal power plant, the government said Wednesday.

The government-led team of experts, from both South Korea and abroad, concluded that a series of earthquakes, reaching a magnitude of 5.4 on Nov. 15, 2017, could have been brought on by efforts to harness energy from the ground.

The study is the first official government finding that indicated the possible cause of the tremors that caused considerable damage in and around the industrial city, located 374 kilometers southeast of Seoul.

It was the second-strongest earthquake since observations began in 1978 and the most destructive ever recorded in South Korea. The temblor left dozens of people injured and more than 2,000 homes damaged.

The quake registered at magnitude 5.8 with its epicenter located near a township south of Gyeongju, 370 kilometers south of Seoul.

This Yonhap file photo shows houses damaged by an earthquake that hit the southern city of Pohang on Nov. 15, 2017. (Yonhap)


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