RT / If you spend any time on the internet, it seems every few months humanity is faced with a looming existential threat from the depths of space. Planet X/Nibiru, the rapture or a wayward comet are, according to conspiracy theorists, destined to destroy us. However, there is one particular conspiracy , treasured by theorists , that our impending doom will come from within planet Earth – that lurking beneath America’s Yellowstone National Park is a supervolcano that will kill us all.
Yellowstone, in the midwestern US, is – they claim – about to erupt and send unfathomable amounts of matter into the sky, covering anyone in the vicinity in a pyroclastic flow of ash and rock, and blocking out the sun, wiping out almost all life on Earth in the process.
Yellowstone National Park © USGS Conspiracy theories tend to draw on some grain of truth. The super volcano really has erupted before, three times in fact, over the last 2 billion years or so, but the theory goes that it’s bound to do so again soon, right? RT.com caught up with Michael Poland, Scientist-in-Charge at the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, to find out the full extent of this lurking supervolcanic ‘threat.’
Poland specializes in volcano geophysics, particularly in how volcanoes change and behave over time. Using GPS, satellites and other methods, he studies how the surface of Yellowstone National Park moves to figure out what’s happening below.
Firstly, what is a super volcano?
“Super volcanos, or super eruptions, are these eruptions that are on the eruption intensity scale, there’s something called the volcano explosivity index (VEI) and eruptions that have a VEI of eight are considered super eruptions. And that’s pretty massive, most eruptions that we see would be VEI three, four. Big ones are five and then once a century or so there’s a six, so a VEI eight is really, really tremendous.”
VIDEO: GoPro consumed by lava returns unique footage from inside the molten flow https://t.co/mq8ahc9J2P pic.twitter.com/VgJtVZVe8b
— RT (@RT_com) 12 November 2017 What would it take to cause one?
“You have to have a really amazing amount of magma in the subsurface, so that’s one of the criteria. In order to be able to put all of that stuff onto the surface and into the atmosphere you have to have it below the surface to begin with. And I think that’s something that is interesting about Yellowstone. We don’t know whether there’s enough magma beneath the surface to have a super eruption, the evidence suggests that a lot of the magma reservoir is actually solid, and about 50 percent of it is molten, so there may not be enough down there to have a super eruption.”
With that in mind, what are the odds of Yellowstone blowing it’s top?
“I think the odds of a supereruption in our lifetime, in our children’s lifetimes, in our grandchildren’s lifetimes are astronomically small. I couldn’t even quantify it, it’s not something I’m worried about.”
READ MORE: Iceland drafts emergency evacuation plans as volcano rumbles after centuries of inactivity
“I find it strange that Yellowstone is the volcano that’s ‘going to doom humanity.’ One of the things that bothers me about that is that there have been super eruptions when humans have been on the planet. There’ve been two and, in fact, both of those were larger than the last Yellowstone eruption. There was one about 74,000 years ago from Indonesia and there was one 27,000 years ago from New Zealand. Both of those were larger than the last eruption at Yellowstone and humanity survived.”
What about so-called earthquake swarms at Yellowstone? And wasn’t there a particularly strong swarm earlier this year, 4.5 on the richter scale?
“Yeah 4.5 is definitely noticeable, you’d feel it and people did, but there was a 4.8 in 2014 and there was a 7.5 in 1959. Certainly this summer’s swarm was really impressive, there were thousands of earthquakes, but that’s sort of what Yellowstone does. It has swarms all the time and one of them has to be the largest. I don’t see that as something to fear, however, instead I see it as an enormous opportunity for study.”
“The idea that Yellowstone is going to erupt and kill us all is so demonstrably false. There’s an odd disconnect I think between common sense and reality and what we know to be true and false based on past events and this irrational fear about yellowstone in particular.”
CARACAS.- La espera terminó y los Rays de Tampa Bay, en teoría, reforzaron la posición que menos le estaba aportando a la ofensiva con el regreso del criollo Wilson Ramos a las mayores. ?Estamos felices por tener a Wilson Ramos con nosotros? , dijo Kevin Cash a MLB.com. ?Me imagino que probablemente tenía algunas inquietudes…
La compraventa de inmuebles como Torre Agbar, Xanadú y el Edificio España aumenta un 70% la inversión en el primer semestre hasta los 6.000 millones de euros. La inversión inmobiliaria vuelve a registrar cifras récord en el mercado español. A falta de apenas cuatro días del cierre del semestre, la compraventa de edificios y solares…
san fernando Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley prayed with members of the Muslim community and distributed zakat (charity) to the needy as he celebrated Eid-ul-Fitr at two masjids in San Fernando yesterday. He attended the Eid services on an invitation from Minister of Local Government Kazim Hosein, who is also referred to as a…
gasparillo The mother of a disabled child was shot dead inside her apartment in Gasparillo yesterday. Ornella Philips, 28, was shot once in the chest. Her body was discovered lying in the living room around 10 a.m. The country’s murder toll now stands at 243. Her eight-year-old daughter, Kayla, has cerebral palsy and depends…
ISTANBUL (AP): Turkish police stopped activists for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex rights from gathering in large numbers for an LGBT Pride event in Istanbul yesterday, but smaller groups made impromptu press statements, defying a ban imposed by the governor. Organisers of the 2017 Istanbul LGBTI+ Pride had vowed to march in central Taksim…
LONDON (AP): The list of high-rise apartment towers in Britain that have failed fire-safety tests grew to 60, officials said yesterday, revealing the mounting challenge the government faces in the aftermath of London’s Grenfell Tower fire tragedy. All of the buildings for which external cladding samples were so far submitted failed combustibility tests, Communities Secretary…
BAHAWALPUR (AP): Alerted by an announcement over a mosque’s loudspeaker that an overturned tanker truck had sprung a leak, scores of villagers raced to the scene with fuel containers yesterday to gather the oil. Then the wreck exploded, engulfing people in flames as they screamed in terror. At least 153 men, women and children were…
WASHINGTON (AP): Making a final push, United States President Donald Trump said he doesn’t think congressional Republicans are “that far off” on a health overhaul to replace “the dead carcass of Obamacare”. Expressing frustration, he complained about “the level of hostility” in government and wondered why both parties can’t work together on the Senate bill…
While reliving the horrors experienced by so many families after another spate of bizarre violence across the country last week, I couldn’t help but picture Tourism Minister Ed Bartlett’s rictus grin plastered on television screens while the elderly and even suckling babes were being gruesomely slaughtered inside their homes. While the rest of us were…
- 13 December, 2017 Police Seeking To Restore Public Order In Montego Bay
- 13 December, 2017 ‘The Goonies,’ ‘Titanic’ added to National Film Registry
- 13 December, 2017 Couple held in SIS robbery
- 13 December, 2017 NMIA Divestment To Be Completed By June 2019
- 13 December, 2017 Shot dead by a soldier’s bullet
- 13 December, 2017 Christmas at the Ashram
- 13 December, 2017 A car crash stole his legs…but he never lost hope
- 13 December, 2017 Florida stone crab numbers down and the prices are up
- 13 December, 2017 How to see December 13 Geminid meteor shower
- 13 December, 2017 UPDATED: Aubyn Hill appointed EGC chief executive – Targets 2.3 per cent growth by next year