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Fault Line Living: The World’s Most Dangerous Landscapes to Live

Geysers, mud pots, and what Barba Papa has to do with the benefits of geothermal energy.

Fault lines are cracks in Earth’s crusts where tectonic plates converge. As you’d expect, these areas have an extraordinarily propensity for earthquakes due to the constant geodesic activity going on beneath. And yet millions of people around the world live on and around fault lines, in a constant state of alertness, with the sound of the earthquake drill alarm growing more familiar than the doorbell.

Faul Line Living is a 15,000-mile expedition from Iceland to Iran documenting the lives of people who live along the world’s most notorious fault lines. The multi-media project explores the human stories that populate these high-risk natural environments, working with school students, seismologists and citizens of each country along the way to better understand how different communities adapt to the challenges of life in fault zones.

Broken jug, damaged in the 1976 earthquake at Kopaska, belonging to Jon Halldorsson
The Blue Lagoon – despite the wind and rain, the warm waters of the Blue Lagoon provide a fillip to tourists and locals alike

Faul Line Living won the 2010 Go Beyond bursary from the UK’s Royal Geographical Society and Land Rover, a £10,000 award encouraging winners to push past their own limits as a way of promoting a wider understanding and appreciation of geography.

Fun after the rain
Steaming mud pots at Namafjall

On July 31, the UK-based team — Tamsin Davies, Serena Davies and Adam Whitaker — embarked upon their journey into these collision zones of nature and humanity. For 12 weeks, they will drive across the UK, Denmark, Iceland, Germany, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Iran, Syria and Lebanon, learning to use a seismometer and delving into the social anthropology of fault line living through photography, interviews and real-time mapping.

Honeycomb basalt formations at Dimmuborgir
Barba Papa house at Seysdisfjordur

Explore the project’s breathtaking gallery and follow along vicariously on Twitter. Meanwhile, keep yourself grounded by appreciating the geological stability of your own locale.


Published August 31, 2010

https://www.brainpickings.org/2010/08/31/fault-line-living/

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