Russian north-west and European north to become heaviest earthquake epicentre in next few years

In the next few years the Russian north-west and the European north are expected to endure earthquakes exceeding grade 7.

This was disclosed on Thursday at an International Scientific Geological Conference in Petrozavodsk (the centre of the Russian Karelian Autonomy, bordering on Finland).

At the conference Andrei Nikonov, the chief scientific worker of the Institute of Physics of the Earth, the Russian Academy of Sciences /RAN/, forwarded new data of seismic activities in Fennoscandia, comprising the Karelian republic, the Murmansk and partly the Leningrad regions, Norway, Sweden and Finland.

According to Nikonov, that is the place, where heavy earthquakes, occurring in Fennoscandia approximately once a century, might happen. The last earthquake, equal to grade 8, occurred on the Swedish-Norwegian border in 1904.

"We cannot point to the exact place of the earthquake. The Kola peninsula and the White Sea are most possible, but the data we acquired must be taken into account by those in chief of all regions, major industrial units and project organizations, which are situated on the seismically risky territory," Nikonov said in his interview with RIA Novosti.

The new data considered, the seismic zoning map and federal enactments will be altered, and measures will be taken to secure units built earlier, the scientist remarked.

Over 340 representatives of 28 RAN offices, enterprises of Russian industry's various branches, as well as scientists from Norway, Sweden, Finland, the US, Estonia, Belorussia and Ukraine are taking part in the international conference.

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