Measures taken across the world to restrict vehicular traffic and public movement in order to reduce the spread of the coronavirus have begun to have a positive impact on the environment — and even on the Earth itself — Greek scientists said recently.
Our world has not only become quieter and cleaner but is also surprisingly shaking less, with scientists recording a marked drop in seismic “noise” produced by the seismic activity of our planet.
In addition to the reduction in air pollution levels over Europe, as has been clearly seen by satellites, the measures have had another, much more unexpected, side effect.
The various lockdowns across the world have reduced the planet’s characteristic “seismic footprint,” a phenomenon that is already noticeable in Greece, based on data recorded by the United National Seismological Network.
The original research was carried out by Greek Professor Efthymios Sokos of the Seismology Laboratory of the Department of Geology of the University of Patras, Dr. Christos Evangelidis, lead researcher at the Geodynamic Institute of the National Observatory of Athens, and seismologist Dr. Dimitrios Giannopoulos.
The research began immediately after the first restrictions were imposed across the nation of Greece.
The results revealed a gradual decline in seismic noise levels, which began immediately after the first set of measures restricting movement and activity, including the shuttering of restaurants, cafes and leisure facilities, and shopping malls, as well as the closure of schools.
According to the researchers, the seismic noise levels show a steady decline after the first announcement of the curfew measures, with the levels reaching their lowest point immediately after the announcement of the second phase of restrictions.
This involved the implementation of universal restrictions on public movement, amounting to a complete nationwide lockdown, which was announced on March 23 in Greece.
With information from AMNA