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Is the Yellowstone supervolcano dying ?

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In the event of an eruption the volcano could spew out 2,000 times the debris of Mount Saint Helen's.

The largest known active volcano in the world, the Yellowstone Caldera has gained a lot of media attention in recent years after it was revealed that this sleeping giant had the potential to erupt at any time and cause untold devastation across hundreds of square miles.

Read More: http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/news/264303/is-the-yellowstone-supervolcano-dying

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Since the researchers concluded this:

The last known eruption took place 70,000 years ago but was a lot smaller than eruptions prior to that and many of Yellowstone's trademark geysers and hot springs have been helping to dissipate some of the energy building up below the surface.

While the research team was keen to emphasize that the volcano is still very much alive, chances are good that we won't see a catastrophic eruption at any time in the foreseeable future.

I'm not going to lose any sleep worrying over this one.

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I am sure somebody will jump in to discredit these findings. Some people just to seem to be able to live with an end of the world scenario looming.

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Opportunity for great celebration; one of the threats to our civilization may not be so serious. Thing is, its a big bubble down there and what is below it may reinvigorate it some day.

Last time I counted there were a couple dozen known ways we could all be wiped out, none of which has more than a minute probability. Still, adding up minute probabilities can end up with a total a good less minute.

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Science tells us that some similar event as the eruption of Yellowstone in the past reduced the human population to a few thousand. We were nearly wiped out previously and we could be again.

The Toba catastrophe theory suggests that a bottleneck of the human population occurred c. 70,000 years ago, proposing that the human population was reduced to perhaps 10,000 individuals[3] when the Toba supervolcano in Indonesia erupted and triggered a major environmental change. The theory is based on geological evidences of sudden climate change and on coalescence evidences of some genes (including mitochondrial DNA, Y-chromosome and some nuclear genes)[4] and the relatively low level of genetic variation with humans.[3]

However, such coalescence is genetically expected and does not, in itself, indicate a population bottleneck, because mitochondrial DNA and Y-chromosome DNA are only a small part of the entire genome, and are atypical in that they are inherited exclusively through the mother or through the father, respectively. Most genes in the genome are inherited from either father or mother, and thus can be traced back in time via either matrilineal or patrilineal ancestry.[5] Research on many genes finds different coalescence points from 2 million years ago to 60,000 years ago when different genes are considered, thus disproving the existence of more recent extreme bottlenecks (i.e., a single breeding pair).[3][6]

On the other hand, in 2000, a Molecular Biology and Evolution paper suggested a transplanting model or a 'long bottleneck' to account for the limited genetic variation, rather than a catastrophic environmental change.[7] This would be consistent with suggestions that in sub-Saharan Africa numbers could have dropped at times as low as 2,000, for perhaps as long as 100,000 years, before numbers began to expand again in the Late Stone Age.[8]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Population_bottleneck

Br Cornelius

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As I understand it the most rapid and extreme evolution happens in such bottlenecks when a population is under serious selective pressure and new genes have a better chance if even by drift alone.

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Posted (edited)

No, there is no Yellowstone Caldera. No, no, no. What?

There wasn`t a Yellowstone Caldera and there will be no Yellowstone Caldera.

I want that there is no Yellowstone at all. Never and anywhere.

Can we talk about orbs or so? Can we?

Edited by toast

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Posted (edited)

As I understand it the most rapid and extreme evolution happens in such bottlenecks when a population is under serious selective pressure and new genes have a better chance if even by drift alone.

You are probably correct.

i would just point out that the Toba event would have been a considerably smaller event than even a diminished Yellowstone eruption. If Yellowstone went off it would represent another mass extinction event which humans would be unlikely to weather. A wiping of the slate so to speak. In the past such events have been signifcant spurs to planetary evolution with the transition from Dinosaurs to mammals been one of them.

From lifes perspective (ie the perspective of DNA) all such events are mere road blocks on the road.

Br Cornelius

Edited by Br Cornelius

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The Quiet before the storm !!!

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Posted (edited)

It us my understanding of volcanoes is they they move as the plate moves and there is some thought it is moving under the mountains and is less likely to erupt. I don't remember where I heard that, though, so I might me wrong.

http://youtu.be/IjGHwGkFIFw

Edited by GreenmansGod

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That would certainly be good.

Br Cornelius

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It us my understanding of volcanoes is they they move as the plate moves and there is some thought it is moving under the mountains and is less likely to erupt. I don't remember where I heard that, though, so I might me wrong.

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I have heard the same thing from an old friend whose husband studied these things.

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I am sure somebody will jump in to discredit these findings. Some people just to seem to be able to live with an end of the world scenario looming.

Don't look in my direction for that. We've known for roughly a decade that there isn't enough eruptible magma to cause significant volcanic activity. Of course that could change, but we'd detect the earthquakes and know long ahead what was coming. For the next thousand years, there doesn't seem to be anything to worry about.

On the other hand, steam explosions, some fairly large, have occurred since the park was founded. Those could be a problem for park visitors or rangers, or maybe even a buffalo or two, but probably wouldn't have an effect outside the park boundary. I'd like to take a mid-winter snowshoe hike along the Firehole River; maybe a week or so. Bet you could get some really neat photos doing that.

Doug

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Science tells us that some similar event as the eruption of Yellowstone in the past reduced the human population to a few thousand. We were nearly wiped out previously and we could be again.

I understand that there are no volcanoes on earth currently capable of such an eruption and that it would take at least a millennium for the needed lava to accumulate. Even so, some big eruptions have occurred among smaller volcanoes. Tamborra, Krakatoa, Thera and Vesuvius come to mind.

Doug

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Atleast this one is not active anymore:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siberian_traps

It possibly killed 90 % of the life on earth. Now thats what i call a volcano.

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We have have to save/protect the wildlife around yellow if something were to happen.

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We have have to save/protect the wildlife around yellow if something were to happen.

I think that would be the least of our concerns.

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Posted (edited)

We have have to save/protect the wildlife around yellow if something were to happen.

If yellow stone erupts there won't be much of North America left and the rest of the world will be stuck in a winter lasting years, caused by all the ash. It will also happen to fast for anyone to react or evacuate.

Edited by Finity

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both Stromboli and Mt Etna are happily bubbling away at the moment and the Italians/Sicilians don't seem worried.

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Posted (edited)

I made a volcano for science class in 1978. It's still active.

Edited by ancient astronaut
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I am sure somebody will jump in to discredit these findings. Some people just to seem to be able to live with an end of the world scenario looming.

I'm just going to say that after what's happened in my area lately (which is an entirely different subject), I'm not taking everything authorities say at face value ever again. They would lie if it meant keeping people calm.

Does this mean I don't believe what these guys have said? Absolutely not. I'll trust what they have to say for now. I'm not going to worry about this, because really, if it does happen it's out of our control anyway. How do you stop a volcano from erupting?

Answer: You can't.

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I've lived at various times of my life in places highly exposed to volcanoes, earthquakes, typhoons (hurricanes in the East Pacific) and tornadoes. The interesting thing is that the populations of those places tend to put it out of their minds and live normally in spite of the threat. They have a remarkable tendency to think it won't happen, and they don't even make simple preparations. I guess this is part of the human phenomenon we call denial.

The recent landslide in Washington state in the US illustrates that too. Here it seems the authorities had warned the local residents decades ago of the threat and they all knew and just lived with it.

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Posted (edited)

I saw some type of National Geographic special on PBS recently.

From what I recall, the Yellowstone caldera is more massive than previously thought, and the ground is bulging upwards slightly every year.

Should it suddenly go boom, devistation will be limited and NOT cause a world-wide disaster.

Of course, lives will be lost within a couple hundred miles, and potentially suffocating ashes will spread much further. But no "apocalypse"

EDIT: If it happens, and you are not within the primary event zone, rather being in a commercial building outside of the primary event , or a house, a house trailer or even your car you will be safe. Ashes, sometimes ignited and suffocating would be the main problem, otherwise you are somewhat safe.

Edited by pallidin

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RIP Yellowstone, with emphasis on the P.

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RIP Yellowstone, with emphasis on the P.

Unfortunately, the magma chamber underneath is massive, some 50 miles wide and and God knows how deep, and bulging.

Current geological surface vents have less than 5% of pressure relief.

It will blow, it's just a matter of when... hopefully not soon.

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