South of Haida Gwaii likely location of future earthquakeExperts studying the second-biggest earthquake measured in Canadian history have zeroed in on the Pacific archipelago of Haida Gwaii as the likely source of a future large quake and tsunami. The earthquake off British Columbia’s coast in October 2012 relieved some of the region’s tectonic strain, but new research shows the shifting also increased pressure immediately south of the islands along the Queen Charlotte Fault. “What this has done in essence is raise the possibility of future thrust earthquakes and tsunamis along this part of the British Columbia margin,” said Thomas James, a researcher with the Geological Survey of Canada. James is one of the lead authors of a compendium of studies analyzing various facets of the recent earthquake, most of which were published Monday in the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America. The Pacific and North American tectonic plates mostly slide along one another, but where those plates meet at certain points along the Queen Charlotte Fault they also push against each other, he explained. The release of that pushing pressure gave rise to the thrust earthquake of 2012. FULL REPORT