Saturday, April 26, 2014

M5.1 Earthquake hits Greenland Sea

An earthquake with a magnitude of 5.1 on the Richter scale hit the Greenland Sea on April 26, 2014, at 03:55:33 UTC at a depth of 10.00 km (6.21 mi). The epicenter of the earthquake is located right on the faultline that crosses the Arctic Ocean, at 73.479°N 7.974°E, some 567km (352mi) SSW of Longyearbyen, Svalbard.

[ click on image to enlarge ]
This follows four further recent earthquakes close to Svalbard or on the faultline north of Greenland, as indicated on above map. All these earthquakes struck at a depth of 10.00 km (6.21 mi).

Some of these earthquakes have also been discussed in earlier posts:
M4.6 - North of Franz Josef Land, 2014-04-13 02:12:19 UTC, also discussed in this post
M4.2 - North of Franz Josef Land, 2014-04-04 07:01:30 UTC
M4.4 - 262km NE of Nord, Greenland, 2014-04-22 10:30:23 UTC, also discussed in this post
M4.3 - 148km SSE of Longyearbyen, Svalbard, 2014-04-24 08:33:06 UTC
M5.1 - Greenland Sea, 2014-04-26 03:55:33 UTC
M4.5 - Gakkel Ridge, 2014-03-06 11:17.17.0 UTC, also discussed in this post

There have been a large number of earthquakes around Greenland since early 2014, as illustrated by the image below. This could be an indication of isostatic rebound, as also discussed in this earlier post.

[ click on image to enlarge ]

As melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet speeds up, isostatic rebound could cause earthquakes around Greenland to become stronger and occur more frequently. Earthquakes in this region are very worrying, as they can destabilize hydrates contained in the sediment under the seafloor of the Arctic Ocean. Furthermore, one earthquake can trigger further earthquakes, especially at locations closeby on the same faultline.


- M4.4 Earthquake hits Arctic Ocean north of Greenland

- M4.5 Earthquake hits Arctic Ocean

- Earthquakes in the Arctic Ocean

- Methane, Faults and Sea Ice

- Norwegian Sea hit by 4.6M Earthquake

- Greenland Sea hit by M5.3 Earthquake

- Earthquake hits waters off Japan

- Earthquake hits Laptev Sea

- Methane Release caused by Earthquakes

- Earthquake M6.7 hits Sea of Okhotsk

- Sea of Okhotsk

- Seismic activity

- Climate Plan


  1. It makes sense that isostatic rebound from Greenland could be causing these earthquakes. Earthquakes anywhere near methane hydrates are concerning.

  2. Meanwhile, another eathquake hit the Greenland Sea close to the quake discussed in the post. A M4.5 quake hit the Greenland Sea, on 2014-04-28 19:54:26 UTC, at 73.115°N 6.174°E, and at a depth of 10.0km (6.2mi).

    1. The mid ocean ridge expanding and shallow depth of 10 kilometers apparently standard now for earthquakes makes me reconsider the non biological high pressure and temperature formation of methane as described by Dr Light. I'm wondering if the horizontal fissures at near 250 km depth are trying to equalize distribution of a shifting level of gas formation; are Methane emissions along the ridge increasing near location of movement from deep source?