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South African Geological Hazards Observation System

The Council for Geoscience completed a project in 2004 funded by the Department of Science and Technology, to create a South African Geological Hazards Observation System. The project aimed to create an inventory and database of known geological hazards affecting South Africa and developing techniques for the assessment of geological hazards using remote sensing data.

Geological hazards are naturally occurring or human induced conditions or phenomena that present a risk or are a potential danger to life and infrastructure. Potential geological hazards facing South Africa include coastal and beach erosion, terrestrial erosion ,deformation due to mining activities and water abstraction, geochemical hazards (natural or anthropogenic), landslides, problem soils (including shrink/swell clays and acidic soils), seismic activity, sinkholes, tsunamis and groundwater related hazards.



A landslide is the movement of a mass of rock, debris or earth down a slope. Landslides are life threatening and also cause damage...



Certain parts of the ground surface of South Africa are prone to sudden, catastrophic collapse, which may lead to death...



Mining activities in South Africa over the past 120 years have changed the natural environment in several ways. Current challenges...

Geochemical Hazards


Potentially hazardous geochemical element-anomalies were identified on existing geochemical maps of South Africa...