NL Times

Netherlands

NAM wants to talk to predictor earthquakes

The Dutch Oil Company (NAM) would like to talk with the retired engineer Adriaan Houtenbos, who states that Groningen residents should expect more and more severe earthquakes.Based on own research Houtenbos, who worked at the NAM before his retirement, expects the first quake with a magnitude of 4 on the Richter scale this year, reported NRC Handelsblad Wednesday.

The NAM is interested in Houtenbos’ study and wants to meet with him, announces the company Wednesday in a response.

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The first earthquake with a magnitude of 5 on the Richter scale can be expected in 2029, according to the retired engineer. NAM states in response experts worldwide address the predictability of earthquakes.

Houtenbos, who relies on graphs and data of the KNMI, the NAM and the State Supervision of Mines, thinks the NAM and the KNMI have misled the population. In 2004, they should have known that earthquakes with a magnitude of 5 on the Richter scale are in the making.

The NAM, however, states until last year their calculations were based on earthquakes with a magnitude of 3.9 at the most. The earthquake in August last year in Huizinga led to new insights.

The quake resulted in renewed research into the magnitude and the consequences of earthquakes caused by gas drilling. Based on the available information the KNMI found an earthquake with a force of 4 to 5 on the Richter scale definitely a possibility.