The city of Balikpapan sits at the mouth of a bay on Borneo island

Scientists have identified a potential tsunami risk in the region chosen by Indonesia for its new capital.

The researchers mapped evidence of multiple ancient underwater landslides in the Makassar Strait between the islands of Borneo and Sulawesi.

If the largest of these were repeated today, it would generate tsunami capable of inundating Balikpapan Bay – an area close to the proposed capital.

But the international team cautions against an overreaction.

“We still have a lot more work to do to properly assess the situation. That said, this is something that Indonesian governments probably should have on the risk register somewhere – even if we’re only talking about ‘low frequency, high impact’ events,” said Dr Uisdean Nicholson

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