It is commonly believed that the Po Plain is an area of low seismic hazard. This conclusion is essentially a combination of two factors: (1) the historical record of earthquakes, which shows a relatively small number of events of moderate magnitude, and only two significant earthquakes, which occurred in the Middle Ages; and (2) the lack of ad-hoc research on the geology of earthquakes in this area, as although many studies have highlighted the local Quaternary tectonics, only a very few of them have discussed the observed evidence in terms of seismic hazard. In contrast, the data presented in the present study strongly suggest that the level of earthquake hazard in the Po Plain is comparable to that of the wellknown seismic areas of the Apennine range, at least in terms of maximum magnitudes. Indeed, the high population density and the concentration of industrial facilities make the Po Plain today one of the more high-risk areas of the Italian territory. The Po Plain represents the foredeep of two growing mountain belts, the southern Alps and the northern Apennines. Recently, modern active tectonics studies have been conducted along its margins to the south, along the northern Apennine Piedmont belt, and to the northeast, along the eastern southern Alpine Piedmont belt. However, in the central and western sectors of the Po Plain, where the south-verging western southern Alpine front links up with the north-verging Monferrato, Emilia and Ferrara arcs, the Quaternary history of tectonic deformation and faulting are still relatively poorly understood. These lie beneath the relatively flat alluvial surface of the Po River, and provide the evidence for paleoseismicity and the resulting seismic hazard. In this review, we compile the data from the literature to reassess the style and magnitude of the ongoing crustal deformation and the associated earthquake faulting.

Active compressional tectonics, Quaternary capable faults, and the seismic landscape of the Po Plain (northern Italy)

MICHETTI, ALESSANDRO MARIA;LIVIO, FRANZ;
2012-01-01

Abstract

It is commonly believed that the Po Plain is an area of low seismic hazard. This conclusion is essentially a combination of two factors: (1) the historical record of earthquakes, which shows a relatively small number of events of moderate magnitude, and only two significant earthquakes, which occurred in the Middle Ages; and (2) the lack of ad-hoc research on the geology of earthquakes in this area, as although many studies have highlighted the local Quaternary tectonics, only a very few of them have discussed the observed evidence in terms of seismic hazard. In contrast, the data presented in the present study strongly suggest that the level of earthquake hazard in the Po Plain is comparable to that of the wellknown seismic areas of the Apennine range, at least in terms of maximum magnitudes. Indeed, the high population density and the concentration of industrial facilities make the Po Plain today one of the more high-risk areas of the Italian territory. The Po Plain represents the foredeep of two growing mountain belts, the southern Alps and the northern Apennines. Recently, modern active tectonics studies have been conducted along its margins to the south, along the northern Apennine Piedmont belt, and to the northeast, along the eastern southern Alpine Piedmont belt. However, in the central and western sectors of the Po Plain, where the south-verging western southern Alpine front links up with the north-verging Monferrato, Emilia and Ferrara arcs, the Quaternary history of tectonic deformation and faulting are still relatively poorly understood. These lie beneath the relatively flat alluvial surface of the Po River, and provide the evidence for paleoseismicity and the resulting seismic hazard. In this review, we compile the data from the literature to reassess the style and magnitude of the ongoing crustal deformation and the associated earthquake faulting.
Michetti, ALESSANDRO MARIA; F., Giardina; Livio, Franz; K., Mueller; L., Serva; G., Sileo; E., Vittori; R., Devoti; F., Riguzzi; C., Carcano; S., Rogledi; L., Bonadeo; F., Brunamonte; G., Fioraso
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11383/1801515
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