In the 1970s, scientists were optimistic that a practical method for predicting earthquakes would soon be found, but by the 1990s continuing failure led many to question whether it was even possible. Demonstrably successful predictions of large earthquakes have not occurred and the few claims of success are controversial.“
To date, there is no agreement on whether the prediction of earthquakes is even theoretically possible.
Arguments against include the theory that the Earth's geology is in a sate of 'Self-Organized Criticality' (a branch of chaos theory). If so, it can be proven that predictions are mathematically impossible.
Note: There are many anecdotal reports about domestic, wild and farmed animals behaving unusually shortly before major earthquakes. There have been few scientific studies of the subject (e.g. see Retrospective studies of unusual animal behavior as an earthquake predictor) - if some animals are somehow sensitive to impending earthquakes, the mechanism is unknown.
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