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Only 'A Matter of Time' Until Scotland is Hit - Scaremongering.

SCIENTISTS believe it is only a matter of time before Scotland is hit by a massive natural disaster.

Just a small climactic shift could trigger freak weather conditions or increase the pace at which the polar ice caps melt.

There is also the possibility of underwater earthquakes, volcanic eruptions or even a meteor strike all bringing death and destruction.

A tsunami is a series of huge waves caused by an impact, eruption or explosion on the ocean. The name means harbour wave in Japanese.

The actual existence of Britain as an island came about as a result of a 40ft tsunami. The Storegga tsunami, 8000 years ago, was caused by an underwater landslide off the coast of Norway.

That created a succession of giant waves which flooded down the east coast and battered the landmass near the Borders which connected Britain to Europe and flooded it.

The waves can be virtually undetectable, can travel across an ocean in 24 hours and be hundreds of feet high when they hit shore.

And according to experts, it could be only a matter of time before the Scottish coast is pounded by a wall of water.

And it could come from any number of directions.

An impact from space would produce destruction on a massive scale.

Like the film Deep Impact, any sort of asteroid or meteorite hitting an ocean would create a huge wave.

The fact that tsunamis are able to travel across hundreds of miles of oceans in a matters of hours, means even an impact thousands of miles away on the other side of the world, could have serious consequences for Scotland.

A less dramatic - but equally effective - cause of giant wave destruction could be triggered by global warming.

The Day After Tomorrow effect - where the melting of polar ice caps interrupts the current of warm Gulf water moving up to heat the climate of the northern Atlantic causing a new ice age - is a genuine scientific concern.

Although it would happen over decades, the idea of Scotland being hit with floods and ice storms is perfectly feasible.

Dr Andrew Dugmore of Edinburgh University said: 'It is a fact that the Greenland ice cap is reducing and the saltiness of the water is definitely changing. That could have some serious impacts on global change.'

While Dr Mark Maslin of the University College London recently predicted that the melting ice caps could cause the land underneath the Greenland ice shelves to shift.

He believes that would cause underwater earthquakes - sending tsunamis across the north Atlantic.

With a force of 1000 hurricanes, the 15ft wall of water would cover the entire country in minutes.

But the most likely, imminent and terrifying source of sea-born destruction to threaten Scotland comes in the form of two Spanish words which could hold the key to our future - Cumbre Vieja.

That is the name of an unstable volcano on La Palma in the Canary Islands. Many scientist predict Cumbre Vieja could erupt in a matter of years and send a rock twice as big as the Isle of Man into the sea.

They believe that would create a 500mph tsunami which would be sent in all directions.

The effects would include a wave 160ft high hitting the east coast of both North and South America Waves of up to sixty feet would smash into the west coast of Scotland and the rest of the UK.

That would ravage towns and cities for several miles inland with a similar impact to the Storegga destruction, and possibly leave hundreds of thousands dead.

But although the eruption is destined to happen - scientists at the Benfield Greig Hazard Research Centre in London believe it could take place in the next few decades - experts are divided on the impact.

While some believe there could be a 60 foot tsunami, others claim it will peter out by the time it reaches the UK and hit us with a 10 or 15 foot high wall of water - still deadly but not as devastating.

But as one expert predicted: 'It is not a question of if it will happen, only when it will happen.'

Only 'a Matter Of Time' Until Scotland Is Hit
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