Global GIS Lesson

Exploring North American Earthquakes

By Joseph J. Kerski

Dock after 1989 Lomo Prieta earthquake.
U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 90-547.

Loma Prieta, California, Earthquake October 17, 1989, Moss Landing. Damaged approach and abutment of the bridge linking the Moss Landing spit to the mainland near the Moss Landing Marine Laboratory. Liquefaction of the beach and Salinas River deposits caused ground cracking and differential settlement. Slide XV-2, U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 90-547. Open File Report-90-547 (, Digital File:tjc00009, ID. Tinsley, J.C. 9ct

In this lesson, students use Geographic Information Systems (GIS) together with the tools and data from the North America Global GIS CD to investigate earthquakes, volcanoes, and population from a local to global scale. The lessons can be used with other data in the Global GIS project to investigate earthquakes in other continents. Furthermore, the methods used here can be applied to other map themes contained within the North America Global GIS CD.