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Discussion papers | Copyright
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-2018-18
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Research article 30 Jan 2018

Research article | 30 Jan 2018

Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It has been under review for the journal Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences (NHESS). The manuscript was not accepted for further review after discussion.

Global warming causes sinkhole collapse – Case study in Florida, USA

Yan Meng1,2 and Long Jia2 Yan Meng and Long Jia
  • 1School of environmental studies, China university of Geosciences, Wuhan, 430074,China
  • 2Institute of Karst Geology, Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences/Karst Dynamics Laboratory, MLR & GZAR, CGS, Guilin, 541004,China

Abstract. The occurrence frequency and intensity of many natural geohazards, such as landslides, debris flows and earthquakes, have increased in response to global warming. However, the effects of such on development and spread of sinkholes has been largely overlooked. Most research shows that water pumping and related drawdown is the most important factor in sinkhole development, but in this paper evidence is presented which highlights the role played by global warming in causing sinkholes. The state of Florida, USA is used as a case study in which the role of global warming is evident, based on correlation analysis between sinkhole collapse and peak drought periods. Three distinct drought and sinkhole collapse phases are evident between 1965 and 2006, along with eight peak periods of sinkhole collapse that lag slightly behind eight peak drought periods. A prediction equation is derived according to curve fitting and a correlation coefficient of 0.999 is determined. The results of this study confirm that global warming related to climate change has led to an increase in sinkhole collapse events in Florida over the past 50 years, which is of significance for studying the occurrence and prediction of other sinkhole collapse events and global warming on an international scale.

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Yan Meng and Long Jia
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Yan Meng and Long Jia
Yan Meng and Long Jia
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Latest update: 17 Aug 2018
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Short summary
The paper reveals that the increase in sinkhole development correlates clearly with global warming which is of significance for studying the occurrence and prediction of other sinkhole collapse events and global warming on an international scale. Sinkhole peaks can be predicted based on a drought index curve fitting equation. New insights revealed into the relationship between global warming and geohazards and should study further through international comparison programs.
The paper reveals that the increase in sinkhole development correlates clearly with global...
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