Solomon Islands Tsunami, One Year Later



The geologic and economic effects of the 2 April 2007 Solomon Islands earthquake and tsunami are distinctly visible a little more than a year after the event. Coral reef colonies that were sheared off and uplifted are slowly recovering, and many new earthquake-triggered landslides remain mobile. Large volumes of sediment created by the earthquake and mobilized by the tsunami have been flushed from the lagoons between the reef and shoreline into deeper water, although significant quantities remain on land. Sediment from the lagoons covers piles of shattered coral that the tsunami moved from the lagoons to the base of channels in the barrier reef. These shattered corals have a higher chance of preservation as paleotsunami deposits than the material deposited on land.