The Question:How big does an earthquake have to be to be considered "major" and how many major earthquakes happen each year? The Answer:For an earthquake to be considered "major" it must have a magnitude between 7 and 7.9. According to the National Earthquake Information Center, 18 major earthquakes occur each year around the world. Here is a link to a chart of the Frequency of Earthquakes Worldwide. â€”The Fact Monster 
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