Project 640 - S4LIDE (Significance of Modern and Ancient Submarine Slope LandSLIDEs)

© Lorena Moscardelli
IGCP640 - Core workshop sponsored by the 2009 Submarine Mass Movements and Their Consequences Symposium

It has been widely recognized that subaquatic landslides are of common occurrence in lacustrine and marine environments. These units have commonly been referenced to as submarine landslides in the literature. They pose a risk to coastal communities and offshore infrastructure. During the past decades geoscientists have made important contributions towards the improved understanding of submarine landslides. Efforts by the geo-modelling community have helped fill the gap between submarine landslide occurrence, dynamics and tsunami genesis. However, our lack of understanding of the causal mechanisms and timing of submarine landslides has hampered progress in the prediction effort, which is essential to implement appropriate mitigation measures.

Complex issues like these can only be addressed via a multidisciplinary approach. Interest in the study of submarine landslides spans a wide range of sub-disciplines: geologists studying the link between climate change and gas hydrate dissociation, planetary geologists using submarine landslides as terrestrial analogs, petroleum geologists evaluating the seal/reservoir capacity of ancient submarine landslides, and engineers evaluating geotechnical risks. This project seeks to create an international and multidisciplinary platform allowing geoscientists from academia and industry to sustain a dialogue conducive to the integration of findings from different fields into a more cohesive understanding of submarine landslides.

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