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Tsunami Backgrounder

Tsunami



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It is the worst natural disaster in decades. On December 26 a gargantuan undersea earthquake off the coast of Sumatra rocked the Indian Ocean, sending killer waves racing toward land. Ravaging shores from Indonesia to Somalia, the tsunami claimed the lives of an estimated 150,000 people and left millions of others homeless and vulnerable to starvation and disease. In the hopes that Scientific American's past coverage may help readers to understand why earthquakes and tsunamis occur--and the efforts scientists are making to predict them--we have pulled together a collection of our articles on these subjects. Links to other sites on the Web documenting the tragedy, as well as a list of some of the organizations accepting donations to aid its victims, follow.
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Tsunamis

02/28/2002
Silent Volcanic Quakes Could Portend Tsunamis

09/04/2001
Scientists Predict a MegaTsunami May Devastate Eastern U.S. Coastline

10/20/2000
Killer Waves on the East Coast?

05/18/1999
Tsunami!

Earthquakes

12/16/2004
Hidden Fault May Threaten Bay Area

03/01/2004
The Threat of Silent Earthquakes

12/09/2003
'Domino' Earthquakes Could Be Deadly

05/05/2003
Earthquake Warning System Sounds Alarm Seconds before Tremors Begin

03/01/2003
Triggered Swarms

01/01/2003
Earthquake Conversations

09/19/2002
Popular Model of Earthquake Prediction Found Faulty

05/13/2002
Scaling the Quakes

09/19/2001
Devastating Medieval Earthquake Finally Understood

08/27/2001
Massive Himalayan Earthquake Overdue, Scientists Conclude

05/02/2001
New Phase Transition May Explain Deep Earthquakes

04/26/2001
Scientists Shake Up Theory of Plate Tectonics

04/12/2001
Scientists Explain Mysterious Quake

09/29/2000
Mississippi's Triple Temblors

09/14/2000
Little Quake, Big Shakeup

12/20/1999
Stress Test

04/01/1998
On Shaky Ground

Elsewhere on the Web

NOAA and the Indian Ocean Tsunami

USGS page on the Northern Sumatra earthquake and tsunami

West Coast/Alaska Tsunami Warning Center page on the Indian Ocean tsunami

Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory page on the December 26 tsunami

Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory tsunami feature

Relief Organizations

American Red Cross

Americares

Action against Hunger

Direct Relief International

Doctors without Borders

International Medical Corps

International Rescue Committee

Oxfam America

Save the Children

UNICEF

United Nations World Food Programme

World Health Organization

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