Download the earthquake dataset from USGS and identify its distribution

Sry Handini Puteri
2 min readFeb 20, 2023

A global dataset for earthquakes has been made globally available by USGS. Here are the steps to download the dataset and display it based on your necessity.

  1. Open https://earthquake.usgs.gov/ and click “Search Earthquake Catalogue”
USGS earthquake catalog homepage

2. Fill in the tab query based on your needs

In this example, I just chose every earthquake that are more than 2.5 magnitude in the past 7 days in the world.

Filling in queries

3. List of the earthquake will be displayed and click download

4. Choose the data format, choose the format that you’re convenient with

In this instance, I am downloading it as CSV. After the file is downloaded, open the file and understand the content of the table.

Data format

5. Open the CSV in your QGIS

Click Layers à Add layers à Add delimited text layers and search for the CSV that we just downloaded. The location and other details will be automatically defined in a different column. Don’t forget to change the projection to WGS84. Then click Add.

Add CSV file

6. The earthquake point will be displayed

Displayed point of earthquake

7. Add some base map to get the sense of the data earthquake distribution

Earthquake data with the basemap

8. Symbolize earthquake based on the magnitude

Depending on your need, you can symbolize the dots into different visualization based on the attributes of the dataset.

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Sry Handini Puteri

Personal learning space ; A Geoenthusiast ; Interested in Disaster Risk Management