Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
I noticed over the last couple days that this was one of the top stories this week, including with major media like The New York Times and Fox News, and various other national news organizations are just now picking it up today. You’ve probably seen a few of these.
Something like the volcano in Yellowstone could never be satisfactorily summed up within the scope of any of those news articles. There are many variables and even unknowns with volcanoes, particularly with the 20 really big volcanoes in the world, including the Yellowstone volcano.
Yellowstone routinely goes through periods of earthquakes and ground deformation from magma shifting miles deep inside Earth. The earthquakes are not the specific type of quake that would suggest the volcano is due to erupt soon.
The recent study itself indicated changes in minerals within rocks (referred to as “crystals” in many of the articles) that occurred over a period of mere decades (rather than centuries as previously thought) leading up to an eruption in the distant past – but there’s no indication these geological processes are underway again now and thus hinting at a new eruption within our lifetimes. It’s a very poor choice in phrasing that the headlines of many of the articles say that the volcano may ‘erupt sooner’ or ‘rumble to life sooner’ than we thought.
While I salute Arizona State graduate student Hannah Shamloo and her colleagues, similar studies should be done by other folks to see if findings can be duplicated and then expanded to include a closer look at what our current geology can tell us based on all their findings. I’m sure that’ll be forthcoming – Yellowstone is the most studied volcano in the world. If you’re interested in reading more, look-up “The Yellowstone Caldera”.
As a science person, I find Yellowstone to be very interesting, but I would never want to see anyone with any part of their lifetime or daily routine spent worrying about it erupting. My thought is that whether or not Yellowstone or any of the world’s other “supervolcanoes” ever affect mankind has already been accounted for by God.
An example of a video and an article out today: