Disaster Fact Checks

FACT CHECK: The moon cannot cause a worldwide tsunami

Rappler.com
FACT CHECK: The moon cannot cause a worldwide tsunami
A tsunami is a series of ocean waves often caused by earthquakes, landslides, volcanic eruptions, explosions, or meteorites.

Claim: The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) warned that the moon will shift and cause a tsunami worldwide.

Rating: FALSE

Why we fact-checked this: The clickbait caption of the video posted on Facebook making the erroneous claim has 686 reactions, 324 comments, and 40,000 views.

The bottom line: Tsunamis are not caused by astronomical bodies like the moon. According to the International Tsunami Information Center, tsunamis are caused by “violent, impulsive undersea disturbance or activity near the coast or in the ocean.”

A tsunami is a series of waves often caused by earthquakes, landslides, volcanic eruptions, explosions, or meteorites. Astronomical bodies like the Earth’s moon have gravitational forces that can affect the tides. But these bodies cannot cause tsunamis.

Flood, not tsunami: In 2021, NASA did release a study that warned of high-tide floods in the coastal areas of the United States by 2030 due to the combined effects of the lunar cycle and climate change. This means that the rising sea levels caused by climate change could be worsened by the resulting gravitational forces dependent on the position of the moon, the earth, and the sun. These floods would not be caused by the moon alone. And these floods are not the same as tsunamis. – Pola Regalario/Rappler.com

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