Telluric hazards can dramatically affect a large number of coastal regions, world-wide and in particular vulnerable insular areas.

French overseas territories (e.g. La Réunion, Mayotte, Guadeloupe and Martinique) are threatened by important volcanic  and seismic hazards. In Europe, the Mediterranean (from the Gibraltar-Azores system to the Hellenic trench-Aegean system) hosts a number of offshore active faults able to produce major earthquakes and tsunamis. However, because the active processes occur below the ocean floor, further progress is hampered by the lack of appropriate seafloor seismological and geodetic instrumentation. 

To address the observational gap in the ocean, the international community must be ready to collect new data at tectonically active zones with the appropriate offshore instrumentation, at as many sites as possible, including in Europe and in its overseas regions.

Our ambition is to start developing such a pool for France, with the idea of extending this initiative at the European level.

This seaward extension of Résif-Epos on-land networks and sensors will allow to get closer to the sources of submarine earthquakes which release most of the seismic energy affecting the Earth. We also anticipate that developing seafloor geodesy will foster our understanding of geodynamic processes, as the development of GPS for continental areas did in the nineties.

Slideshow Advances in seismic hazards research