A Yellowstone volcano eruption in 2014 is feared by some who point to how roads are melting and earthquakes are increasing in number and magnitude. But should we fear a Yellowstone supervolcano forming in the famous national park?
In a related report by The Inquisitr, believers in a Yellowstone conspiracy theory claim that the United States Geological Survey (USGS) is hiding earthquake data that points to fissures opening up all around the national park. Proponents even claimed that bisons were fleeing from the earth tremors and more recent reports say the National Guard is preparing for an "event" at Yellowstone National Park. But it's claimed by conspiracy theorists are attempting to cover up such information because of the mass panic that would be generated if a Yellowstone volcano eruption were to happen in 2014.
Recent news may seem to justify some of these fears. For example, a 3.3 mile stretch of road called Firehole Lake Drive has become so hot that the road began to melt according to Yellowstone National Park officials:
"It basically turned the asphalt into soup. It turned the gravel road into oatmeal."
But park officials claim that we should not fear since the closure of some parts of Yellowstone is said only to be temporary. In fact, repair crews have already worked on the melted roads and they're once again open to the public.
Still, the reason that so many people fear a Yellowstone volcano eruption is because it's really a supervolcano lurking beneath our feet. In fact, the British Geological Survey recently claimed the threat of a supervolcano is more likely than the dangers posed by global warming or World War 3.
The giant caldera measures 35 by 45 miles and the amount of magma was recently discovered to be about 2.5 times larger than previously estimated. Older reports say it was around 36,000 atmospheres, which is crazy if you consider that Mexico'sPopocatépetl was estimated to be around 54 atmospheres when it erupted.When the caldera generates enough pressure it will explode with the power of a nuclear explosion, killing millions of people in the initial blast and burying a good portion of the United States in mountains of ash. This eruption would also continue for months if not years.
The only good news is that the USGS is tracking the pressure of the underground magma in the Yellowstone caldera. The USGS also calculates the odds against a Yellowstone eruption as 730,000 to one on an annual basis. As a comparison, the odds of a royal flush in poker is 1 in 649,740 so perhaps that's not too comforting.
But if you ask scientists who have studied the area for years about the possibility of a Yellowstone supervolcano eruption they do not seem too concerned. For example. Dr. Robert Smith of the University of Utah is said to know more about the Yellowstone volcano than anyone else alive. For a long time he's been monitoring satellite images for land bulges indicating underground activity. While he calls a Yellowstone earthquake from last year "the biggest earthquake in 30 years" he does not seem too concerned about what he's been seeing from the seismograph readings based upon his 60 years of experience.
When Smith was asked about the possibility of the "big one" occurring soon he focused on probabilities:
"If we were to have another big eruption, it would affect a large area, on the order of several states. But, as I said, that probability is very, very, very, very small. In my calculations it's point zero, zero, zero, one percent."
Are you concerned about a Yellowstone volcano eruption in 2014? What do you think about the conspiracy theories claiming the government is hiding an imminent supervolcano?