Nature

Major Tectonic Shift Detected At Yellowstone Supervolcano

Major Tectonic Shift Detected At Yellowstone Supervolcano

The eruptions of the volcano in Hawaii have meant that focus has been increased on the Yellowstone supervolcano.

Alarm bells have been ringing, and the volcano has sparked eruption fears due to the increased activity below and above the surface.

Multiple Small Earthquakes and Geyser Eruption Spark Fears

There have been multiple earthquakes at the Yellowstone National Park along with another eruption of the dormant geyser, and this is the fourth. This has led scientists to speculate that the largest super volcano in the world might be about to erupt. The Yellowstone volcano is sitting on the Pacific Ring of Fire, and this is what was behind the volcanic activity and earthquake along the Pacific Ocean, the most recent including Hawaii and Indonesia.

The geyser at Yellowstone is named the Steamboat and has been in dormancy since 2014. However, suddenly on March 15, it erupted, then again on April 19, 27 and May 4.

Yellowstone National Park Caldera Steamboat Geyser

200 Small Earthquakes Over Two Weeks at Yellowstone

Over a period of two weeks, more than 200 earthquakes hit Yellowstone, and this told scientists that a huge tectonic plate shift had taken place underneath the surface of the Earth. It was said that two of three warning signs that there was going to be an imminent eruption caused panic when visitors were at the site. Warning signs include seismic activity increasing, an increase of gas outlet at the surface and the ground deforming.

While there has not been any sign of the ground deforming, during 2018, there has been an increase in the gas outlet and seismic activity, both under and above the ground's surface. Many people have started to get nervous. Seismologists have said that if there were an eruption at Yellowstone, there would be mass destruction. However, experts working at the National Earthquake Information Center played down any fears.

Mount Sinabung Yellowstone Caldera

US Geological Survey seismologist Harley Benz is among those monitoring the site and said that locals in the region would have lots of warning and it might be weeks or months before the volcano erupted. It was said that the volcano would get more intense in regards to seismic activity so people would know a long time ahead.

The increase in activity sparked fears for the chain of 13 volcanoes over 800 miles on the West Coast.

Liz Westby, a geologist at the US Geological Survey Cascades Volcano Observatory, said that if Yellowstone erupted, it could cause mass destruction. However, head scientist at USGS Yellowstone Volcano Observatory in Washington, Michael Poland, said that there was not going to be a major earthquake. He said that people were focusing on the chance of a big eruption. When one does happen, it shakes the region severely, and people should be prepared for that happening.

If the Yellowstone volcano erupts, the consequences would see ash that would devastate most of the United States.