The Really Big One

A public forum on earthquake hazards and preparedness in the Pacific Northwest. Watch a video of the forum

The Science Behind the Next “Really Big One”

The recent New Yorker magazine article, entitled the “The Really Big One,” about the possibility of a magnitude 9.0 earthquake in the Pacific Northwest has sparked intense public interest in earthquake science and emergency preparedness. University of Oregon geologists Rebecca Dorsey and Douglas Toomey will host a public forum to explain the science behind earthquake preparedness, answer common questions and detail the potential risks to residents of the region.

Panelists will discuss the types of earthquakes that occur in the Pacific Northwest, and the history of the Cascadia subduction zone, as well as recent advances toward regional preparedness and efforts to expand a West Coast Earthquake Early Warning System.

Event Information

Illustration of the Cascadia Subduction Zone

Are You Ready?

The following links provide information about earthquake hazards in the Pacific Northwest.

Public Forum Video

The entire public forum lasted approximately two hours, and included presentations by geologists and disaster preparedness experts in addition to a public question and answer session afterwards. Approximately 500 people attended the public forum and an additional 220 watched the online stream.

The original video is also available on the UO Channel:

Watch the Video

Scientists and Experts

Representatives from the University of Oregon and Oregon State Universtiy will be available for questions.

University of Oregon — Department of Geological Sciences

douglas-toomey-uoDouglas Toomey, PhD
Professor of Geological Sciences

amanda-thomas-circleAmanda Thomas, PhD
Assistant Professor of Geological Sciences

ray-wheldon-circleRay Wheldon, PhD
Professor of Geological Sciences

Oregon State University — College of Earth, Ocean & Atmospheric Sciences

chris-goldfinger-circleChris Goldfinger, PhD
Professor of Geology and Geophysics

Oregon Partnership for Disaster Resilience

josh-bruce-circleJosh Bruce, MCRP

Plan for the Future

Join us on Thursday, August 6 for a public discussion about earthquake readiness.

Event Information

The forum will take place on Thursday, August 6 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Room 156 of Straub Hall, just southeast of the Erb Memorial Union.

Admission is free.

The event will be streamed live on the Internet via the UO Channel and you can follow the discussion on Twitter at #TheReallyBigOne.

Contact Jim Barlow, (541) 346-3481 or; or Lewis Taylor, (541) 346-2816 or for more information.


Straub Hall

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