“The good news is, if this sucker blows, global warming is not going to be a problem. “

Some worrisome news from Greg Laden’s Science blog, also in the running for Best Science Blog

Note: Image below was not part of the original story

This images indicates Yellowstone earthquake from the past week. One of the most intense siesmic "swarms" in the national park's history has been shaking the north end of Yellowstone Lake. Since Dec. 26, 900 quakes, 111 measuring magnitude 2.0 to 3.9, have been recorded. Image by the U.S. Geological Survey.

Seismic Activity at Yellowstone by Greg Laden

You have already heard that there has been increased seismic activity at Yellowstone National Park over the last few days. Since December 26th, there have been several earthquakes a day, some jut over 3.0 magnitude, in the vicinity of the north side of Yellowstone’s lake. This is a seismically active region, but the level of earthquake activity being seen now is much greater than seen in perhaps decades (though the data are still not sufficiently analyzed to make positive comparisons yet).Volcano experts have absolutely no clue as to what this means. A major reason for virtually total uncertainty is that Yellowstone sits on top of a very large caldera of the type that is formed by a so-called “super volcano” and the last super volcano to erupt was a few years (like, 70 or so thousand years) before any seismic or other geological monitoring station were set up anywhere. Indeed, the first really serious data collection at Yellowstone began just over 30 years ago.

Anyway, I’ve got a few resources for you in case you want to explore this further. To begin with, I recommend a look at my earlier post on this matter:

The Yellowstone Problem

As you have surely heard, the Yellowstone Caldera … the place where Old Faithful and the Geyser Basin reside … has been undergoing increased “activity” including some earthquakes and a rising up of the land. Is this a big problem? Should the evacuate? Should those of us living only a few states away start wearing earplugs?

My sister, Elizabeth, publishes a newspaper in the vicinity of Yellowstone and they’ve got a very comprehensive piece on he caldera. In fact, my sister’s nickname is Caldera Girl. So she really knows her Calderas.

Tracking Changes in Yellowstone’s Restless Volcanic System

…Since the 1970s, scientists have tracked rapid uplift and subsidence of the ground and significant changes in hydrothermal features and earthquake activity. In 2001, the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory was created by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the University of Utah, and Yellowstone National Park to strengthen scientists’ ability to track activity that could result in hazardous seismic, hydrothermal, or volcanic events in the region…

Finally, we’ve got this somewhat hokey but still fun to watch movie of how we are all totally doomed (h/t Caldera Girl).

The good news is, if this sucker blows, global warming is not going to be a problem.

I am personally keeping close watch on the seismic activity in the area and if I see anything ominous I’ll let you know. As soon as I finish packing and driving about 2,000 miles to the south of here.

About these ads
This entry was posted in Earth, Science. Bookmark the permalink.

198 Responses to “The good news is, if this sucker blows, global warming is not going to be a problem. “

  1. VG says:

    looks like NCEP has suddenly lost interest in comparing past snow cover LOL

    http://moe.met.fsu.edu/snow/

  2. Perry Debell says:

    More information is also available at http://www.seablogger.com/?cat=22
    Chaiten volcano also seems hot to trot. Is it just me or are there more volcanoes kicking off around the globe than is usual? Leif might like to comment?

    The year without a summer.
    “It is now generally thought that the aberrations occurred because of the 5 April – 15 April, 1815 volcanic eruptions of Mount Tambora,[7][8] the world’s largest eruption in at least 1,600 years (Lake Taupo’s Hatepe eruption of c. 180 AD was probably of similar size, see Supervolcano), on the island of Sumbawa, Indonesia (then, part of the Dutch East Indies), which ejected immense amounts of volcanic dust into the upper atmosphere. The fact that the eruptions occurred during the middle of the Dalton Minimum (a period of unusually low solar activity) is also significant.

    Other volcanoes were active during the same time frame:

    * La Soufrière on Saint Vincent in the Caribbean in 1812
    * Mayon in the Philippines in 1814

    These other eruptions had already built up a substantial amount of atmospheric dust. As is common following a massive volcanic eruption, temperatures fell worldwide because less sunlight passed through the atmosphere.”

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

    The Supervolcano mentioned as erupting around 70,000 years ago is probably Mt Toba, which is considered by some to have nearly wiped out all alternative forms or species of human life.

    http://www.jqjacobs.net/anthro/paleo/bottleneck.html

    http://www.andaman.org/BOOK/originals/Weber-Toba/textr.htm

    Homo sapiens sapiens proposes, Gaia disposes. (If you believe in the Gaia idea, which I don’t.)

    Regards,

    Perry

  3. Ron de Haan says:

    Detailed information and daily reports on Yellowstone:
    1. Alan Sullivan, Fresh Bilge, http://www.seablogger.com
    2. Ralph Harrington’s Volcanism Blog: http://volcanism.wordpress.com/?s=yellowstone&searchbutton=go!
    3. Erik Klemetti’s Eruptions: http://eruptions.wordpress.com/

  4. Brian Johnson says:

    All the Yellowstone predictions and now this from the BBC just to add to the media frenzy!

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7817684.stm

    James Morgan [BBC Science "reporter"] should have put the last line of his report, first!

  5. tallbloke says:

    Full moon at perigee is tomorrow. It’s second closest approach to earth this year. Added to which, it’s not far below the maximum declination it reaches in it’s eighteen year cycle, which will bring it about as close as it gets to being overhead at Yellowstone. Added to which earth is only a few weeks past perihelion, it’s closest approach to the sun. To top it off, there is a detectable correlation between large volcanic events and low sunspot numbers

    So it’s not surprising that all the gravitational push-me-pull you and electromagnetic wierdness is causing some extra activity. Whether she’ll blow is anyones guess though. Let’s hope not.

    On July 21st there will be an even closer perigee (357464 km) – and new moon will be only 6 hours from it. New moon when the moon is between the earth and sun, creating an even more unbalanced extra gravitational tug on the earth’s crust. Fortunately, we will be near our furthest from the sun at that time of year.

    Fingers crossed.

  6. Lars Kamél says:

    If the Yellowstone super volcano erupts, it will really mean the end of civilization as we know it. No more worries about climate change, economic crisis, terrorism or something less fundamental than simply trying to survive. Oh, no! Now, I have become a doomsday prophet, too! But the geological data are rather clear. A super volcano eruption 70000 years ago in South East Asia almost made the human species extinct. Previous eruptions of the Yellowstone super volcano have covered large parts of North America with thick layers of ash. A large eruption by a normal volcano could make the world about one degree colder. What would a super volcano eruption do?

  7. Lubos Motl says:

    Wow, I am reading additional articles about the Yellowstone supervolcano, e.g.

    http://www.radionetherlands.nl/currentaffairs/region/northamerica/090108-yellowstone-volcano

    http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&q=yellowstone+supervolcano

    A 325 miles radius circle around the park to be possibly evacuated? That’s pretty impressive. Are the housing prices around the park dropping?

    The eruption would save a few trillion dollars for cooling the Earth (for 0.3 °C or so, more than all the carbon emission cuts until 2050), according to the carbon “market” prices, but that would probably not be the biggest effect of such an eruption.

  8. Radun says:

    Is there any correlation between Solar minima and earthquake activity?
    Any supporting data or views ?

  9. old construction worker says:

    ‘I am personally keeping close watch on the seismic activity in the area and if I see anything ominous I’ll let you know. As soon as I finish packing and driving about 2,000 miles to the south of here.’
    Hmmmm………that would put in southern Mexico.
    Or Hawaii, It could become our national capital.

  10. I have a lot of personal videos of the Yellowstone Geisers from this summer.

    It could be possible to compare with others from the previous years?
    Someone have more from 2007 or before?

    Some of them are at: (in spanish, sorry)

    http://descubriendolanaturaleza.blogspot.com/2008_08_01_archive.html

    Yellowstone’s geisers change his activity, and it’s normal, but if all of them increase his size or frecuency, could be a signal of the proximity of a “global catastrophe”

  11. KimW says:

    A “Supervolcano” eruption is usually classed as a Volcanic Explosivity Index of 8 and the last known one was a bit nearer than 70 000 years ago. Lake Taupo in New Zealand erupted 26,500 years ago producing 300 km³ of ignimbrite, 500 km³ of pumice and ash fall and a unknown volume of material inside the caldera – over 1000 cubic km in all. The eruption is thought to have formed the caldera now filled by Lake Taupo. The most recent eruption of Taupo was AD 186 but this was only a VEI of 7 – only about 150 cubic km of ash was erupted. The 186AD date is from Roman and Chinese observers noting red skies – quite good for an eruption on the other side of the world.

  12. King of Cool says:

    Theory has it that the earth was hit by a another planet which as well as tilting the axis giving us seasons also formed the moon from the debris. The collision also melted everything so that now we have a solid high temperature inner core, a molten mantle and a very thin cool crust from which the continents formed. In the cracks of this thin crust the mantle regularly spills out through volcano vent holes and rifts, many of which are under the ocean.

    The temperature is so hot inside the earth that if we drill down just 7.5 miles the temperature will reach over 400 deg F.

    But unlike the sun which is generating heat from nuclear fission which seems to be thermostatically controlled (although this may oscillate up and down around the power that has been set by a higher force), like a hot potato when you take it out of the oven, the earth is cooling. Our solar system is also subjected to other random events that are happening in the universe in which we are hurtling along with billions of other stars at 250 km/sec.

    However, the luminosity of the Sun will increase by 40% over the next 3.5 billion years. In 900 million years or so we will have lost all plant life, the oceans will have dried up and the earth will be uninhabitable. Even if the sun was to last forever, the earth would be uninhabitable in 500 million years as the cooling mantle would cause the loss of most of the atmosphere and oceans.

    In the meantime we have to survive super-volcanic eruptions, giant asteroid collisions, gamma ray bursts from space, mega-tsunamis, famines, global pandemics, anthropogenic warring (not a spelling error), overpopulation, climate change and thousands of Hollywood disaster movies.

    And Al Gore is worried about CO2 !!! I think we should start looking for another planet – now.

  13. John A says:

    If Yellowstone were to erupt, everyone would be praying for global warming. Believe me.

  14. MattN says:

    You think the economy is bad now…..

  15. Jared says:

    Bible codes predicting the future are often wrong, but there is a Bible code that predicts Yellowstone will erupt in 2010.

  16. Mark says:

    Yikes…

  17. Leon Brozyna says:

    I don’t doubt that if a “super volcano” erupts anywhere in the world we’ll be told that it’s masking AGW.

    But then, after a couple of years without a summer, I would imagine we’d all be more concerned about global famines than any imaginery dangers from global warming.

  18. realitycheck says:

    Lets be clear here – this is a not a piddly little Mount St. Helens – this is a SUPERvolcano. When the Lake Toba Supervolcano blew in Sumatra roughly 70 thousand years ago – there were layers of ash 600 meters thick deposited in Sumatra and up to 6 inches thick across the whole of India and in South Africa. From the geologic record they also know that global temperatures dropped by about 3 to 3.5 degrees Celsius for up to a century following the event and it likely led to a planet-wide die off. There is some evidence to suggest that the human lineage were almost wiped out by this event.

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

    If Yellowstone (comparable in size to the Lake Toba caldera) is really going to blow – you’d need to evacuate North America -not the States around it…

    Worried? – Sure, but tomorrow I could be hit by a bus. In the meantime, have a beer, sit back and laugh at Al Gore – you’d be surprised how much stress it will relieve.

  19. PaulHClark says:

    Anthony,

    I am not sure where 70,000 years comes from – the last super volcano was about 75,000 years ago and I believe it was in Sumatra.

    Yellowstone super volcano is suggested to erupt around every 600,000 to 650,000 years as I recall from a programme I watched and it last exploded … you guessed it ….around 650,000 years ago.

    It is suggested that after the last super volcano only a few thousand humans survived which is why we all apparently look so alike.

    I think from what I saw on the TV programme it would be an “Extinction Level Event” so let’s hope it is a very long time away.

    REPLY: Not my writing, this is Greg Laden.

  20. Geoff Sharp says:

    Very normal to see this during times of grand minima, and its all probably due to the change in the “torque” that the solar system is experiencing right now just as it has every other time of grand minima. See graph below.

  21. TitiXXXX1892 says:

    Reminded me of that story, which I think I found on WUWT at first

    How to construct a world-wide panic

    The essential elements of an effective global panic consist of two parts:

    First, one needs to identify a potential source of a world-wide catastrophe. Second, one needs to convince everyone that that actions of man are about to trigger that catastrophe. This is best illustrated by this following theoretical example:

    It is well known that a “Super Volcano” lies under Yellowstone park. This volcano went undetected for many years, because its sheer size is so large it escaped notice when looking for something more familiar in size.

    The consequences of another eruption of this monster can be fairly well predicted. First, it will simply blow away a fair-sized piece of Montana, and falling ash will bury cities for many miles beyond. The atmospheric ejecta will blanket a large portion of the earth, blocking out the sun and producing a “nuclear winter” for a significant portion of mankind. Crop failures and other effects of rapid cooling will lead to the death of untold billions of both human and animal inhabitants.

    In fact, there are some significant geothermal and other indicators in Yellowstone that suggest this monster is again on the move. This has sparked at least one major television presentation discussing the potential for another eruption and the obvious catastrophe that would follow if it does. But this information in itself has not created much in the way of panic. Most citizens are resigned to the fact that mega-disasters, should they occur, can not be prevented by human action because they are part of the natural behavior of the planet and worrying excessively can not change anything. Don’t worry, be happy, we’re all in this together.

    To turn the Yellowstone Super Volcano into a world-wide panic, we need a convincing piece of junk science as a trigger. Taking our cue from the “man-made CO2 is causing global warming” hoax, here’s one distinct possibility as far as Yellowstone is concerned:

    Professor Wilfred Brimstone at the University of Mongolia has developed a model which clearly shows the buildup of human population on both the east and west coast of the United States is putting excessive pressure on both sides of the North American plate. The accumulation of vast amounts of additional weight in the form of people, buildings, automobiles, and other man-made items is creating such an excess of plate pressure at the edges, that magma is being forced laterally toward the center of the country, and in particular towards a weak crust zone in Montana centered at Yellowstone park. In the same manner as popping a pimple by squeezing from two opposing sides, the “coastal weight effect” is squeezing the magma beneath the crust and causing a rapid pressure buildup of the Yellowstone Super Volcano. Man’s greed to live near the ocean has tipped the balance of nature, and it is now only a matter of time until Yellowstone blows its top.

    ….. unless we take quick action to arrest and reverse this process.

    It is critically important to immediately evacuate everyone from both coasts, and dismantle all heavy structures and begin transporting them to the center of the country, redistributing them evenly over a wide area until the overall plate pressure has been suitably equalized and the danger has passed. Senator Barbara Boxer has introduced a bill which will impose a stiff tax on any item weighing more than six ounces in order to pay for the weight relocation. A new $100 million Center for Building Weight Studies is currently under construction in Santa Barbara.

    If you do not want to be dislocated from your present home, former Vice President Al Gore has just formed a new company, Relocation Unlimited, in which you can invest in “weight offsets” and not have to move. For a price, Mr. Gore will arrange have an equivalent weight of ordinary dirt dug up and relocated instead of your own 3 bedroom ranch.

    It is also of immediate importance that we educate our children in the nature of this pending disaster that their parents’ over-building has created. Children everywhere should quickly make costumes that resemble blocks of concrete and conduct ritualistic marches in the general direction of the central Midwest. This, combined with the waving of signs and the singing of Kumbaya will quickly spread the word throughout the public school system and draw the attention of the mainstream media which is also critical to this effort. Working together, we can all stem this rapidly looming disaster.

    incidentally, you can purchase your STOP YELLOWSTONE NOW t-shirts by visiting our online store, and our book by the same name is available on Amazon.com. A prime time television special is currently in production.

  22. Philip_B says:

    I’d worry more about Chaiten which continues to erupt and may well produce a cataclysmic Krakatoa sized eruption.

  23. Mark N says:

    Just finished reading Alston Chase’s book “Playing God in Yellowsrone” which was a fascinating look at the history of Yellowstone and the environemtnal movement. Geologist were one of the few allowed in when they started monitoring this activity. Surprisingly, keeping out the biologists.

    I hope it doesnt blow yet!

  24. Dan Lee says:

    Hmm, I live 2000+ miles Southeast of there (South Florida) and I don’t feel much better about it. A super-volcano in Yellowstone would still kill me & mine, but slowly, e.g. by starvation or any of the other consequences of such a rapid destruction of the global ecosystem. This would send us all back to the stone age.

  25. Luis Dias says:

    30 years of monitorization and already we are witnessing the signs of a super-bang that only happens once every 50/100 thousand years?

    What’s next? Gonna call the recent earthquake activity “unprecedented” and somehow glue it to a human behaviour?

    Pfff, chill. You people are suffering from over-consciousness to the chaotic world we’re living in.

  26. Armin says:

    I just happened to been there just between December 26th and January 2nd. When I took the snowmobile to Yellowstone Lake the ranger station (read: warming hut :-) ) they had this picture also printed out. Other than that It shows that most of the shocks are from under the lake. See also the dots. There is already longer suspicion that something is out there (and it ain’t Ness borther :-) ).

    Still no worries according to the experts. There is not enough magma (yet) to cause a new supervulcano.

  27. hotrod says:

    The Yellowstone super volcano would totally re-define the term major disaster if it decided to blow in modern times. It would certainly test the hypothesis of global cooling due to volcanic ass injection into the atmosphere.

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

    The Ash Fall fossil bed site in Nebraska tells the tale of an earlier eruption from that hot spot some 12 million years ago, that dumped volcanic ash feet deep in Nebraska.

    http://ashfall.unl.edu/ashfallstory.html

    There have been a couple of similar episodes, in Yellowstone. Uplift was noticed in the north end of the lake some years back when they realized the shore line was changing in odd ways that were best explained by the whole lake basin tilting.

    There was also a ground bulge scare in California. The Mammoth lakes region near the old Long Valley Caldera, also experienced ground inflation. That volcano has a very similar eruption history to Yellowstone.

    The so called Palmdale bulge appeared about the same time period, but it was believed due to stress building up for a potential release of a major earth quake.

    http://www.fieldwerks.com/yellowstone_lake.htm

    http://www.ireport.com/docs/DOC-172706

    http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,914086,00.html

    http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=950DEEDE163AF936A35751C1A96F948260

    Larry

  28. papertiger says:

    Na, you are thinking of a Stromboli type volcano, with a firehose nozzle ready to squeeze out the lava and pyroclastic whatnot in a spectacular fountain.
    That’s not the way Yellowstone operates.
    Yellowstone’s caldera covers 1500 square miles. It might burb. You ever see a kettle of sourmash fermenting with the slow motion bubbles rising to the surface? Burb …. burp …. burp. – Like that but with 800,000 years between burps – that’s what Yellowstone will do if it erupts.
    All the rest of it, “2500 times bigger then mount St Helens”, ” covering North America in 3 feet of ash” that stuff is just sweeps week packaging for the weather channel. Geologists doing a “booga, booga” at the public.

    I’m not afraid of no Yellowstone Boogerman.

    But if Mount Shasta starts having tremmors, then I’ll join you down in Cabo San Lucas for margaritas.

  29. hotrod says:

    typo correction should read — volcanic ash injection into the atmosphere.

    Ooops

    Larry

  30. Bill Illis says:

    You can see 5 old yellowstone-hotspot calderas in this satellite picture.

    The one on the bottom left, “the craters of the moon” caldera formed 11 million years ago. There are three more outside of this pic extending almost to California going back another 4 million years.

  31. Pearland Aggie says:

    I guess this is a new sunspot that will end the spotless streak…looks fairly legit.

    http://sohowww.nascom.nasa.gov/data/realtime/mdi_igr/1024/latest.html

  32. JimB says:

    The “Tracking Changes….” link is subscription only.

    JimB

  33. ClioSmith says:

    This is an interesting post. A large event like this (God forbid it should actually happen) would raise a plausible “escape hatch” for AGW alarmist scientists who may need cover for a failed hypothesis. I was impressed by Sharon Begley’s article in the Jan. 3 Newsweek, which discusses the extreme reluctance of scientists to change their minds, or to admit changing their minds.

    I’ve been miffed at Begley since her propaganda piece last spring about “The Denial Machine.” Now I wonder if she isn’t doing a lot of thinking about climb-down strategies for AGW alarmists. See http://www.newsweek.com/id/177740

  34. terry46 says:

    Off topic but Nasa has A news story about how solar activity doosday possible in our future.Isn’t it ironic that now with the sun being blank for the 2nd most days every recorded in A year we now hear of possible solar problems.You know they were saying the very same thing about sun cycle 24 and look it still blank.I’ll guarantee Hathaway is involved in this story somewhere.

  35. Jon says:

    You really think 2000 miles will matter? Ok, so you will have sun for a few extra weeks, but that thing goes massively and ‘nuclear winter’ like effect for the planet will likely happen for years.

  36. Jim Powell says:

    I have been watching and looking into different aspects of this earthquake swarm since it began. http://www.bnhclub.org/forums/showthread.php?t=506 I have lots of questions. Is the Lake Hotel Fault the same as the Outlet Graben? Could increased heat account for the increased flow out of Yellowstone Lake? Or would increased flow from underwater geysers be such a minuscule amount of increased heat that it wouldn’t make any difference?

  37. Paul says:

    I am sorry to report I don’t see the link or video that you refer to as Hokey but fun to watch.

  38. Smokey says:

    If Yellowstone blows, at least one human will survive to carry on: click

    It’s Friday… time to take a few seconds and cast another vote: click

  39. Austin says:

    From NWS FTW:

    WE ARE IN STORE FOR A BIG CHANGE LATTER HALF OF NEXT WEEK AS A BROAD
    TROUGH OVER MUCH OF NOAM SENDS COLD ARCTIC AIR DOWN INTO THE REGION.
    RELIABLE COMPUTER MODELS ARE STILL HAVING A DIFFICULT TIME
    DETERMINING JUST HOW COLD IT WILL BE. THE AIR MASS ORIGINATES IN
    NORTHERN AND EASTERN ALASKA WHERE DAYTIME TEMPS HAVE BEEN MINUS 20
    TO MINUS 45+ DEGREES. GIVEN THAT WE ARE NOW IN THE DEAD OF
    WINTER…STRENGTH OF A RIDGE BUILDING OFF THE WEST COAST…A
    MCFARLAND PATTERN SETUP NORMALLY RESULTS IN SOME OF THE COLDEST
    TEMPERATURES OF WINTER…

  40. tarpon says:

    Will a new tax make it quiet down?

  41. Tim C says:

    Yes that looks like a sunspot, moreover the region in question yesterday is showing signs too.

  42. jmrSudbury says:

    I checked 3 browsers. Paul is correct. The video does not seem to be there. The original link from the html page source was:

    John M Reynolds

  43. Bill in Vigo says:

    Hello Austin, We are getting the same forecast for NE Alabama for the cold next week.

    About Yellowstone. If that thing goes There will be no worry about warming. Just where the next meal will come from. With food supplies costing more and more on an almost daily basis now I wonder how bad it will be if most of the arable land in the northern hemisphere is covered in ash (which later will become fertile land) and nuclear winter for 5+years. I suspect that there will be some survivors and that they will be scattered around the globe. It would suit me just fine if the explosion were put off for a few hundred years. I just don’t want to witness it. There is certainly nothing we can do about it.

    Wait didn’t we do this once before for Y2K?!!!!!!

    Bill Derryberry

  44. Jeff Alberts says:

    Heh, if this blows it will be like winter in Seattle year-round, everywhere.

  45. BGOOD~WYOMING says:

    We live 200 miles from Yellowstone and our ask beds are 20 feet thick i dought that any thing lived through that!!!

  46. BGOOD~WYOMING says:

    lol ash beds !!

  47. paminator says:

    TitiXXXX1892 (03:53:15)-

    Absolutely hilarious!!!!!! Bravo!

  48. Charlie Iliff says:

    Problem solved. In a newly-signed contract ($3 billion) between the U.S. Government and BM Energy, Inc., the thermal energy under Yellowstone will be concerted to electricity without any CO2 emissions. Models by scientists at BM show that the atmosphere will be cooled by .01 degrees F and Ohio will receive free electricity forever. Bernard Madoff is heading the new energy company.

  49. Jeff L says:

    1st of all, let me say I am posting this as a geologist by profession so I hope you take these comments seriously (just as I hope you take Lief seriously when he posts about solar issues). Yes, the Yellowstone caldera could blow big, but it could also erupt in small fashion…. or not at all. There are many signs volcanologists look for in an impending significant eruption beyond earthquake swarms like the ones that has recently occurred – massive deformation of the land surface, pre-cursor small eruptions of increasing frequency, changes in volumes & types of gasses being emitted at the surface, new faulting see at the surface – none of which are being seen. Calderas ( & “super-volcano” eruptions associated with them) are formed by a collapse of the magma chamber – the magma chamber 1st has to be largely emptied. This occurs through a period of eruptions. We havent released any magma yet – so we are no where close to “super-volcano” danger. Also, FWIW, the EQ swarm activity has died down from in frequency & magnitude over the last few days. It is just a little reminder mother nature is active in this part of the world.

    Volcanoes do not erupt the same way every time they erupt. They have a statistical distribution – commonly lognormal- just as most natural phenomena do. What does that mean? The probability of a doomsday eruption is exceedingly low. It is disturbing to me that so many people focus on the P0.0001 case vs the P50 case. This is exactly what the Gore-Bull warning crew does – focusing on a doomsday warming scenario which has virtually no chance of occurrence. We need to do better than that. Focus on the science. Divorce yourself from the emotion. Make sure the public gets the best answer science can provide, not scaremongering.

    ..,, not to say this isn’t a phenomena that is exciting & interesting to watch, but lets keep it in perspective.

  50. Jeff says:

    I’ve been watching Yellowstone in the last few weeks & Chaiten in South America since last May through the Fresh Bilge BLOG. I highly recommend this site.

    I have learned many things: The most likely eruption from Yellowstone, if any, would be a steam explosion which can be quite powerful. The next most likely result is a magmatic extrusion. The ‘super’ explosive events of VEI 7 or 8 is the least likely & the ‘overdue’ tag is entirely bogus since these have not been regular events.

    The interseting thing to me is that the lake has greatly increased outflow when it normally would be getting less & less this time of year.

    Reading from one of the links at the top of this page, I also found out that Yellowstone emits more than 5% of all volcanic CO2, worldwide, & this only from the guysers & mudpots !

  51. Jeff says:

    By the way:

    Austin: what region are you talking about ?

  52. Jim Arndt says:

    This is a more likely possibility. There have been many “minor” eruptions at Yellowstone.

    http://pubs.usgs.gov/fs/2005/3024/

    “Lava Flows
    More likely in Yellowstone than a large explosive caldera-forming eruption is eruption of a lava flow, which would be far less devastating. Since
    Yellowstone’s last caldera-forming eruption 640,000 years ago, about 30 eruptions of rhyolitic lava flows have nearly filled the Yellowstone Caldera. Other flows of rhyolite and basalt (a more fluid variety of lava) also have been extruded outside the caldera. Each day, visitors to the park drive and hike across the lavas that fill the caldera, most of which were erupted since 160,000 years ago, some as recently as about 70,000 years ago. These extensive rhyolite lavas are very large and thick, and some cover as much as 130 square miles (340 km2), twice the area of Washington, D.C. During eruption, these flows oozed slowly over the surface, moving at most a few hundred feet per day for several months to several years, destroying everything in their paths. “

  53. CodeTech says:

    It’s not going to “blow”… but I like the way it scares some people :)

    I was there the year Elvis died. No kidding… family vacation, we were in Gardner, Montana overnighting with our tent trailer when someone asked if we’d heard the news.

    Hauled a giant 8-person Jayco trailer with our 1969 Buick Wildcat all the way up and down mountains, and gained a lot of respect for just how HUGE the geoformations are in that entire area. If you haven’t been there, I assure you that videos and pictures can’t possibly give you a sense of what it’s like. I clearly remember driving up an almost vertical face of thousands of feet with switchbacks and all, and when you get to the top it’s plains!

    Yellowstone itself humbles you. Well, assuming you’re a science-oriented person and actually think about what you’re looking at. If you ever want to feel insignificant on this planet, wander around and consider how this one natural formation dwarfs all of humanity’s works. Then consider that this huge thing is ONE thing, and a minor one at that.

    Sorry for waxing poetic, but… yeah… I don’t think it’s even possible for Yellowstone to blow, pretty much everything in the park is relieving the pressure that might otherwise be building up, and it would take tens of thousands of years of building up before there was enough to actually explode.

  54. hunter says:

    People love apocalyptic stories. For every cataclysmic eruption of Yellowstone, there are many small ones.
    We will muddle through this somehow, just as we will continue to muddle through our variable climate.

  55. Roger Sowell says:

    “An earthquake centered about a mile south of San Bernardino jolted Southern California briefly about 7:50 p.m. (PDT) Thursday evening (Jan 8, 2009), according to the U.S. Geological Survey and the Southern California Earthquake Center. It was estimated to be about magnitude 4.5.”

    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2009/01/earthquake-ratt.html

    I did not feel it on the coast in Manhattan Beach, perhaps because we were celebrating Florida’s win over Oklahoma in the BCS championship game!

    Roger E. Sowell
    Marina del Rey, California

  56. crosspatch says:

    There are several active volcanoes currently but the one I believe has the best potential for an explosive eruption would be Koryak (or Koryaksky) on Russia’s Kamchatka peninsula though it isn’t a “super” volcano.

    One thing that was very interesting recently was new volcanic activity in Ethiopia along a rift where many geologists believe a new ocean is forming. A new ocean is being made in our lifetimes though I doubt any of us will live to see it fill with water. The rift valley will some day be the spreading center of a mid-oceanic ridge.

  57. Ed Scott says:

    I have been reading that Panama is economically friendly to retirees. It is also outside the 600 mile radius of total destruction should Nature decide to replenish the fertility of the soil in western USofA. It is more likely that I would become a part of the landscape in the manner of Harry R. Truman, resident of Mt. St. Helens. In the meantime, I will live in fear of our newly elected “government” and their costly, vain attempt to rescue me from the CO2 which I exhale.
    —————————————————————
    Carbon market worth up to $118 bln in 2008-report

    http://uk.reuters.com/article/breakingFundsNews/idUKL828985820090108

  58. PaulHClark says:

    Jeff L (07:41:31)

    I, for one, am hugely reassured by your post. Thank You.

  59. Jon Jewett says:

    Jeff L

    Thanks for your input. We need a little adult supervision from time to time by professionals like you and Lief.

    That being said, there is a CD out by a group called “The Anonymous Four”. They are a group of sopranos and they did a mass written for the “end of time”, i.e. for the end of the world that was to happen in the year 1,000 AD. It is a acapella and really cool if you like Gregorian chants.

    Anyway, I would recommend all to purchase a copy, enjoy the music and get on with your lives. After all, the end of the world may be at hand (or maybe not) but there is nothing that you can do about it.

    Steamboat Jack

  60. fred says:

    The magma body under Yellowstone is around 7-10 kilometers deep. Essentially all the seismic activity is at shallower depths with few reaching down to the body. There is no sign of deeper activity that would indicate that the magma is being fed from below so there is really no immediate danger of a supervolcanic event.

    It has been quieter for a week or so now although there have been some harmonic tremors indicating that something is moving about in the crust above the magma (actually a slurry, they say).

    Here is a site where you can see the seismograms.

    http://www.seis.utah.edu/helicorder/heli/yellowstone/index.html

    Most of the activity was closest to seismometer LKWY_SHZ_US which has been offline for a day or so. There is a link to a map so that you can see which other seismos are near the north end of the lake, YLT, and YTP are pretty good. They are short period, but with the bumps being as close as they are the energy is relatively short period (high frequency) anyway (“high frequency is several Hz. and up in geophysics as opposed to the long distance stuff which is often less than 1 Hz., but they don’t give the specific band widths at this site). YFT and YUF are broadband sites nearby which is where you should look if you want to see something from far away in the world like the recent Indonesian quakes.

    Each line is 15 minutes long, vertical gridlines are 1minute color coded for 0-15, 15-30, 30-45 and 45-60 minutes after the hour. Zulu time on the right MST on the left.

    There are links to older data on the site.

  61. AnonyMoose says:

    I think it was a USGS or Utah U article about this swarm that stated that geologists expect there would be volcanic activity at the surface (a “normal volcano”) before the supervolcano would blow. There have been small volcanoes at Yellowstone since the last major eruption, and the last one was quite a while ago. So I’ll wait until there’s smoke before worrying about a fire.

  62. crosspatch says:

    TitiXXXX1892 (03:53:15) :

    Reminded me of that story, which I think I found on WUWT at first

    Hey, why not combine the crises into one? The Earth’s crust has a certain temperature gradient. For each unit of distance one goes deeper, temperature will rise a certain amount. This heat is conducted through the crust and is dissipated there. If one increases the average temperature at the surface, the temperature increases down through the entire crustal temperature gradient.

    Now if the temperature gradient in the upper crust is 20 K/km, then increasing temperature at the surface by 1 K (same as 1 C) ends up melting 50 meters of rock from where it is currently melted toward the surface. Global warming can then cause a super volcanic eruption. So Al Gore needs some new slides for a sequel to his movie. Besides, that old Oscar should be wearing out soon and he will be needing a replacement.

  63. Bill Marsh says:

    Anonymoose,

    Well, you don’t have the proper attitude at all. You’re supposed to be cowering in abject fear under your desk about this. At least until the next ‘ultimate disaster’ story.

  64. Rod Smith says:

    Jeff L (07:41:31) :
    “Volcanoes do not erupt the same way every time they erupt. They have a statistical distribution – commonly lognormal- just as most natural phenomena do. What does that mean? The probability of a doomsday eruption is exceedingly low. It is disturbing to me that so many people focus on the P0.0001 case vs the P50 case. This is exactly what the Gore-Bull warning crew does – focusing on a doomsday warming scenario which has virtually no chance of occurrence. We need to do better than that. Focus on the science. Divorce yourself from the emotion. Make sure the public gets the best answer science can provide, not scaremongering.”

    Well said, and very, very appropriate. Panic is extremely contagious and almost always counter-productive.

  65. Ed Scott says:

    A possible solution for Dr. Pachauri’s bovine, swine and farm animal methane pollution of the atmosphere. The capture and storage of the methane could provide for sustainable production of electricity.
    ————————————————————-

    Loo goes boldly up your bum

    http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/article2110528.ece#OTC-RSS&ATTR=News

    THIS credit crunch space loo goes boldly where no toilet has been before – up your bum.

  66. When does “suckers” use to blow up?, during solar minimums?. Anything to do with Ap index?

  67. fred says:

    Well, I was wrong, the link to the older data is not there, I think I found one somewhere before, but maybe I dreamed that. Anyway, here is a link to the Lake seismo for the 1st of Jan.

    Compare and contrast the activity to that for the 7th at the same station.

    Dec 26th was even more active than Jan1.

  68. Luke says:

    Instead of throwing all of these trillions at CO2, how about we invest it in the only route to salvation for the human race: life in space. We need to become planet free to ultimately survive…

  69. Mark says:

    The real question is whether these tremors might be anthropogenic. Too many people driving SUV’s in Yellowstone might be disturbing the natural balance of the park.

  70. Bill Marsh says:

    Rod Smith,

    That is an interesting behavior in humans. To focus an inordinate amount of anxiety in avoiding an almost non-existent threat. For instance, I have had many, many people tell me the reason they don’t wear seat belts is that 3% of the time it’s better not to be wearing a seat belt at the time of a crash and they see absolutely nothing wrong with this risk analysis.

  71. Ric Werme says:

    PaulHClark (03:47:02) :

    Yellowstone super volcano is suggested to erupt around every 600,000 to 650,000 years as I recall from a programme I watched and it last exploded … you guessed it ….around 650,000 years ago.

    A long time ago, November 29th, 2007, as a matter of fact, I addressed this issue in a science, uh, let’s see, at http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/11/29/statistician-debunks-gores-climate-linkage-of-the-collapse-of-the-mayan-civilisation/ . I was rather unkind to the poster I was replying to, but largely because he claimed it was the best science available.

    The key part of my statement was:

    The USGS spends lot of time studying Yellowstone’s many hazards and what appears to me to be very good scientific information in Preliminary Assessment of Volcanic and Hydrothermal Hazards in Yellowstone National Park and Vicinity says this on page 28:

    Although the probability of a large caldera-forming eruption at Yellowstone is exceedingly small, it is exceedingly difficullt [sic - I can find typos in anything!] to make a defensible quantitative estimate of that probability. As there have been three such eruptions in about the past 2,100,000 years, there are only two intereruptive periods from which to gauge any additional possible interval between the third and a potential fourth such event. The first interval, between the Huckleberry Ridge (2.059±0.004 Ma) and Mesa Falls (1.285±0.004 Ma) caldera-forming events, was 774,000±5700 years. The second interval, between the Mesa Falls and Lava Creek (0.639±0.002 Ma) events, was 646,000±4400 years. A statement, widely repeated in popular media, regards such eruptions as occurring at Yellowstone “every 600,000 years” with the latest eruption having been “600,000 years ago”. This is commonly taken to imply that another such eruption is “overdue”. Such a statement is statistically indefensible on the basis of the extrapolation of two intervals. (Even the simple arithmetic average of the two intervals is 710,000 years, not 600,000 years). From the line of reasoning outlined here, the probability of a fourth large caldera-forming event at Yellowstone can be considered to be less than 1 in a million, below the threshold of hazards interest unless future premonitory phenomena, probably more severe than those recorded historically in caldera systems around the world (Newhall and Dzurisin, 1988), were to be recognized.

    There are far more likely outcomes of an earthquake swarm at Yellowstone and the alarmist press can always find something to talk about. The last time I was the the Bozeman news paper had an article title “Is Yellostone Ready to Blow” due to uplift around the lake and very hot surface temps at the Norriss Basin.

    Gotta run….

  72. Jeff Alberts says:

    I felt my first quake after moving to scenic Whidbey Island in Western Washington State in 2002. (after having grown up in Northern VA)

    There was a 5.2 quake near Friday Harbor out in the San Jauns, I believe. At my house, probably 50-70 miles away, it felt like a low frequency vibration, like a column of heavy tanks were moving along at high speed on the road outside. Lasted for about 20 seconds or so. It was also like blasting one might feel near quarries or construction sites, but prolonged.

  73. Jeff Alberts says:

    Ed Scott (08:41:21) :
    It is more likely that I would become a part of the landscape in the manner of Harry R. Truman, resident of Mt. St. Helens.

    Only if you refuse to heed the numerous warnings given…

  74. Richard deSousa says:

    I watch the History Channel quite frequently. I think their title is a misnomer… it should be the Catastrophe Channel… LOL

  75. Ric Werme says:

    PaulHClark (03:47:02) :

    Yellowstone super volcano is suggested to erupt around every 600,000 to 650,000 years as I recall from a programme I watched and it last exploded … you guessed it ….around 650,000 years ago.

    A long time ago, November 29th, 2007, as a matter of fact, I addressed this issue in a science, uh, let’s see, at http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/11/29/statistician-debunks-gores-climate-linkage-of-the-collapse-of-the-mayan-civilisation/ . I was rather unkind to the poster I was replying to, but largely because he claimed it was the best science available.

    I tried to repost that, but WordPress caught it as a duplicate….

    There are far more likely outcomes of an earthquake swarm at Yellowstone and the alarmist press can always find something to talk about. The last time I was the the Bozeman news paper had an article title “Is Yellostone Ready to Blow” due to uplift around the lake and very hot surface temps at the Norriss Basin.

    Gotta run….

  76. Bruce Cobb says:

    “The good news is, if this sucker blows, global warming is not going to be a problem”
    No, the good news actually is global warming is not going to be a problem regardless of whether “this sucker” blows or not. The bad news is, if this sucker blows at a time when we’re cooling, such as we apparently are now, it could exacerbate the cooling significantly. It would also give the AGW believers like Greg Laden a handy “explanation” for the cooling in entirety, saying that it was just “masking” the warming, which would be sure to return in a few years. “Best Science”, my foot.
    Any fool knows that it is, in fact cooling that is to be feared, not warming.

  77. B Kerr says:

    I’m more concerned about NORTH COAST OF PAPUA, INDONESIA.

    Indonesia has a lot of big volcanoes.
    Big nasty volcanoes.

    Check out the past seven days

    http://earthquake.usgs.gov/eqcenter/recenteqsww/Quakes/quakes_all.php

    Yes you can find Yellowstone at the foot of the list.

  78. MartinGAtkins says:

    I can’t see what all the fuss is about. All we need do is fill the depression with reinforced concrete.

    We will of course have to start a letter campaign urging our world leaders to fire up every available cement mixer or, every living thing on earth will be destroyed….including polar bears.

  79. Smokey says:

    Please take a few seconds to cast your vote for our Best Science Blog: click

    Thanks. [Voting page is sometimes slow to load.]

  80. PaulHClark says:

    Ric Werme

    I am doubly reassured! (but would never tempt fate – not that I suggest anyone is BTW)

  81. ClimateFanBoy says:

    Rev. 8:6-7: “And the ‘SEVEN ANGELS’ which had the ‘SEVEN TRUMPETS’ prepared themselves to sound. The ‘First Angel’ sounded, and there followed HAIL and FIRE mingled with BLOOD, and they were cast upon the Earth: and the third part of trees was burnt up, and all green grass was burnt up.”

  82. Cassandra King says:

    I would have thought the type of volcanic ‘event’ is dependent on the quantity of gasses in the magma, a smooth flow of liquid magma means little gas is present which means that the upward flow of magma has not been constrained for a long period of time, now if the upthrusting magma at the head of the inner hotspot is prevented from reaching the surface due to an unyielding crust then the disolved gas content will increase over time changing the nature of the magma from extrusive to explosive.
    An intensive seismic survey of the chamber might help determine the character of the magma chamber or an analysis of the gasses emeging from the lake bed/geysers?
    If there has been a recent extrusion of liquid magma then the chances of an ‘explosive event’ is reduced I think.

  83. J.Hansford. says:

    Personally I think the world will be destroyed by mutant hamsters…. Rustling and scurrying, little beady eyes, watching….. always watching…. ;-)

  84. Ed Scott says:

    Jeff Alberts
    “Only if you refuse to heed the numerous warnings given…”

    —————————————————————

    The signal will be the mass exodus from the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory.

  85. Karl Heuer says:

    King Of Cool –

    The Sun gets its energy from fusion, not fission. It will also stay in the main sequence producing approximately the same amount of energy and luminosity for another 4 Billion years.

  86. AndrewWH says:

    Of course, if Yellowstone does go Kablooie! then I hope, before your power goes out, come on here and post a “We were wrong” apology!

    Sure you will. We on this site have integrity.

    Although there apparently is no need to brush snow off the top of an Anderson screen as it does not effect the readings, what is the recommendation if the covering is ten metres of ash?

    Ahh, panic. The only person who ever benefited from it was Harry Harrison’s Stainless Steel Rat – “I permitted myself one instant of panic, to promote the flow of adrenalin, then clamped down hard with my mental control. No panic, Jim! You’ve been in tight spots before. Think – don’t react blindly.”

  87. Leon Brozyna says:

    O/T

    From the “if at first you don’t succeed, try, try, try again” depatment…

    SWPC has just identified the newest sunspot. This one looks more promising than the last speck that failed to take off. And in the southern hemisphere there’s a new plage area which may bear watching to see if it further develops (it’s following on the heels of the previous failed spot/speck).

  88. crosspatch says:

    “It will also stay in the main sequence producing approximately the same amount of energy and luminosity for another 4 Billion years.”

    But the earth will likely be long dead by then anyway. First of all, the sun’s output increases as it ages even in the main sequence. It is currently hotter than it was when life first appeared on the planet. This increase in output will continue as it ages. At the same time as the Earth cools, volcanism will slow. This will reduce the gasses pumped into the atmosphere and reduce the action of plate tectonics.

    Any significant decrease in subduction would be a substantial decrease in CO2 entering the atmosphere. CO2 will be scrubbed out of the atmosphere and plants will begin to die which will then result in the animals dying. The atmosphere gradually “outgasses” into space, the oceans evaporate away and we are left with a planet looking much like Mars with only a thin CO2 atmosphere left. All of this while the Sun is still in the main sequence. We probably have less that 125 to 250 million years of Earth supporting life as we know it today.

  89. Jeff Alberts says:

    J.Hansford. (10:07:53) :

    Personally I think the world will be destroyed by mutant hamsters…. Rustling and scurrying, little beady eyes, watching….. always watching…. ;-)

    Nah, guinea pigs. Don’t you watch South Park? ;)

  90. Karl Heuer says:

    K-Of-Cool

    Also, I don’t know where you are getting your information on mantle cooling.

    The mantle cools about 50-75 degrees Kelvin/Billion Years*

    *http://www.the-conference.com/JConfAbs/5/1037.pdf

    Current temp of the Mantle ranges between 900 degrees F and 1700 degrees F at the mantle/crust boundary — to over 6000 degrees at the mantle/core boundary.

  91. George Bruce says:

    Obviously we need to reconsider human sacrifice……….

  92. Paddy says:

    http://www.volcano.si.edu/reports/usgs/ seems to be quite comprehensive. In a quick scan of these comments I did not see a cite to this website.

  93. Philip McDaniel says:

    Well…from a reading of the ‘general consensus’ if Jellystone, excuse me, Yellowstone decides to blow we’re in serious trouble. In fact, those of us farthest away – say, like here in South Florida, will most likely starve to death. On the other hand we could probably subsist on chicken-littles. There seem to be a bunch of them around down here discussing global warming.

  94. jonk says:

    hotrod (04:39:26) :

    “typo correction should read — volcanic ash injection into the atmosphere.”

    Thanks for the update. I was getting some disturbing mental pictures.

  95. Andrew says:

    Climatefanboy-not sure that verse makes much sense here. Yes, hot lava will be spewing from the Caldera, but the main effect the world has to worry about is the giant ash cloud that will spread around the world-the world wouldn’t burn, it would freeze. Unless, you meant that AGW was going to burn the world-which is frankly impossible. Even at the massive levels of CO2 in the Earth’s past, it didn’t get ~that~ hot. I personally think that refers to when the will expand and set nuclear fire to the atmosphere

    I hardly think there is any good news if Yellowstone rips us a new one. But just goes to show how AGW religion twists ones thinking.

  96. Andrew says:

    That should be the sun will expand.

  97. Grant Hodges says:

    Hi guys,

    OT comment I want someone to criticize:
    Since we are in a period of cooling . . . some will say that we are in a flat period . . . . irregardless . . . . in as much as the warming is said to be the cause of the sea level rise because of ice melt, then . . .

    If the mms per year rise in sea level continues while the temperatures remain static . . . the theory of anthropomorphic global warming is definitively falsified. Perhaps it is possible to falsify AGW with existing information by this line of reasoning.

    Fire away.
    Grant

  98. Grant Hodges says:

    Having re read my post, I should have put Catastrophic in front of AGW. . . since the catastrophe is really the only absolute thing we are talking about. Earth is always warming or cooling. The only question is, is it doing this catastrohpically.

    Sorry bout dat.

  99. Michael H. Anderson says:

    Human sacrifice seems to be exactly what is being proposed by a lot of fringe – and mainstream – Greenies, and this pathological worldview has long ago entered public mainstream thought in the form of “humans-as-cancer/virus” groupthink.

    It’s certainly being proposed by regulars like SecularAnimist (give me strength) at RealClimate. I posted some humorous comment, none of which was approved…

  100. Mike M says:

    i am up for human sacrifice to appease the earth gods.

    lets start with the ones amongst us who have displayed the most hubris by suggesting that mere human activity is the driving force behind climate change(hansen, gore, ect)

  101. crosspatch says:

    If the mms per year rise in sea level continues while the temperatures remain static . . . the theory of anthropomorphic global warming is definitively falsified. Perhaps it is possible to falsify AGW with existing information by this line of reasoning.

    Fire away.
    Grant

    Sea levels have been flat to a slight downtrend since 2006. There is currently no sea level rise. It is another “projection” that has shown to be false.

  102. crosspatch says:

    “The mantle cools about 50-75 degrees Kelvin/Billion Years”

    And once it cools to the point where subduction stops, the rate of cooling will slow because subduction and volcanism is a method of heat transfer out of the mantle and lower crust.

  103. Jim Powell says:

    I figure that these last few earthquakes are right on the edge of the caldera. So if future earthquakes stay within the caldera they will be migrating north. These last earthquakes are 2.6 miles NNW of the WLWY station which has recorded a 10 inch uplift in the park over the last 4 years—the most of anywhere in the park.

  104. Mike M (12:06:42) :

    “i am up for human sacrifice to appease the earth gods”
    Let us sacrifice him (AG) to the Sun, better. The stake has to be a big one as his weight has increased a lot…(we could even make candles out from his grease!!)

  105. Michael H. Anderson says:

    MikeM – good thought. Why do these “let’s thin the human species” types never volunteer and set a good example for the rest of us? Put your money where your mouth is, says I!

  106. Ed Scott says:

    Melting Greenland ice “will drown coastlines”
    Written by Christopher Monckton
    Thursday, 08 January 2009

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/scarewatch/monckton_scarewatch_greenland.html

    The scare: In early January 2008, Stephen Schneider, a biologist turned climatologist, put up a blog posting to say that “We cannot pin down whether sea levels will rise a few feet or a few meters in the next century or two”; that there is a “potential for up to 7 meters of sea-level rise stored as ice on Greenland”; that “Greenland is apparently melting at an unprecedented rate, and way faster than any of our theories or models predicted”; that “mounting evidence from ice cores says probably there is unprecedented melting going on right now”; that “another decade or two of such scientifically-documented acceleration of melting could indeed imply we will get … meters of sea-level rise”; that “another 5 meters of potential sea level rise lurks … in West Antarctica”; and that “this is a gamble with Laboratory Earth that we can’t afford to lose.”

    The truth: Remarkably, Mr. Schneider does not provide references – or any other evidence whatsoever – for his assertions. He merely declaims.

  107. Michael H. Anderson says:

    Why not throw Al straight into Old Faithful? Direct action is what it’s all about, right?

  108. Jeff Alberts says:

    Since we are in a period of cooling . . . some will say that we are in a flat period . . . . irregardless . . . . in as much as the warming is said to be the cause of the sea level rise because of ice melt, then . . .

    Besides “irregardless” being a useless word, I don’t have much to say about it.

    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/irregardless

  109. Suzanne Morstad says:

    Living about 100 miles from Yellowstone, I’m finding this discussion very interesting. I’m not really worried by living so close to Yellowstone. If it blows as a supervolcano eruption, those living close to the caldera will be the lucky ones. Dying of ash pneumonia, cold and starvation are far worse that incineration and that’s what appears to have happened to all but a few thousand or less humans when Toba erupted about 74,000 years ago.

  110. tallbloke says:

    Philip McDaniel (11:08:25) :

    Well…from a reading of the ‘general consensus’ if Jellystone, excuse me, Yellowstone decides to blow we’re in serious trouble. In fact, those of us farthest away – say, like here in South Florida, will most likely starve to death. On the other hand we could probably subsist on chicken-littles. There seem to be a bunch of them around down here discussing global warming.

    Fluttered south to discuss their pet theory somewhere nice and warm did they?

  111. Ed Scott says:

    Note that the IPCC falsely states the cause and exaggerates the consequences, both constructs of a straw man.
    —————————————————
    Temperature Change and CO2 Change – A Scientific Briefing
    Written by Christopher Monckton
    Wednesday, 07 January 2009

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/monckton/temperature_and_co2_change_briefing.html

    THE CHIEF REASON for skepticism at the official position on “global warming” is the overwhelming weight of evidence that the UN’s climate panel, the IPCC, prodigiously exaggerates both the supposed causes and the imagined consequences of anthropogenic “global warming”; that too many of the exaggerations can be demonstrated to have been deliberate; and that the IPCC and other official sources have continued to rely even upon those exaggerations that have been definitively demonstrated in the literature to have been deliberate. In short, science is being artfully manipulated to fabricate what are in essence political and not scientific conclusions – a conclusion that is congenial to powerful factions whose ambition is not to identify scientific truth but rather to advance the special vested interests with which they identify themselves.

  112. Ric Werme says:

    PaulHClark (10:02:40) :

    I am doubly reassured!

    Then I guess it was worth the second attempt (which also claimed it was a duplicate, and probably referred to the previous post).

    I stumbled across a nice USGS link of recent EQ activity at Yellowstone, see http://earthquake.usgs.gov/eqcenter/recenteqsus/Maps/special/Yellowstone.php . The red loop is the border of the caldera. Feel free to panic if you see quakes all around the periphery, though Jeff L’s (07:41:31) post again before panicing. The brown lines are faults in the area, be nice to them. The gray line is the border of the park, it’s about 3X the size of Rhode Island.

    I’m no world traveler, but I can’t imagine a more unique place than Yellowstone, especially if you might be interested in Geology. I’ve been there once on a bicycle tour (1974), once in winter (1989, after the fires), and once as a side trip to another bicycle tour (2003, see http://wermenh.com/biketour/yellowstone.html ). Yellowstone is seismically active in almost any way you can imagine except as a tectonic plate boundary. The ever-increasing instrumentation lets us see things that would have been missed just a decade or two before.

    On my first visit, I was disappointed with Old Faithful and the waterfalls on the Yellowstone River because they’re hard to get close to. I was blown away by the variety other thermal features from dry fumaroles to wonderfully clear hot springs. Each of the thermal basins has a special personality – I think I’d feel more safe in the middle of the earthquake swarm than when I was at Norris Basin. The energy and risk of a steam explosion that could happen right next to me was quite unnerving.

    Gotta get there again, it would be fun to hike to some of the thermal areas that are undeveloped.

  113. fred says:

    @Grant Hodges,

    There would be a lag between changes in the atmospheric temperature and ocean temperature even if one assumes the former to drive the latter, which is by no means clear.

    BTW it’s “anthropogenic”, anthropomorphic means shaped like a man. ;-)

  114. Ed Scott says:

    “Global Cooling is really Global Warming”
    Written by Christopher Monckton
    Monday, 05 January 2009

    http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/scarewatch/warming_really_cooling.html

    The scare: On 2 January 2009, the Wall Street Journal wrote one of a series of articles apparently co-ordinated throughout the generally alarmist news media throughout the holiday season, trying to overcome the problem posed for “global warming” alarmists by the fact that global mean surface temperatures have been on a downtrend for eight straight years.

    “Subtle changes, adding up decade after decade, amount to more than the climate’s natural variation”: In fact, they don’t. For a start, as previously noted, many of the changes are so small that they are well within the very large variations that have taken place in the climate of the past. In any event, the end of the present decade will prove to have been substantially cooler than the beginning, notwithstanding the steady increase in CO2 concentration throughout. In the past, one might have relied upon the Wall Street Journal to check its facts, and to present both sides of the story – especially the factually-true side. But, on “global warming”, no news medium can now be trusted to check even the elementary and readily-available facts recorded here. End of scare.

  115. Michael H. Anderson says:

    Sorry to veer OT like that. Been watching this site for a while now: http://www.yellowstonegis.utah.edu/. Nice compendium of stuff.

  116. Ric Werme says:

    Ed Scott (08:41:21) :

    I have been reading that Panama is economically friendly to retirees. It is also outside the 600 mile radius of total destruction should Nature decide to replenish the fertility of the soil in western USofA. It is more likely that I would become a part of the landscape in the manner of Harry R. Truman, resident of Mt. St. Helens.

    I think Harry Truman made the right decision, though apparently he stayed more to protect the property than because he couldn’t imagine living off the mountain.

    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/mountsthelens/hary11.shtml

    Rather than Yellowstone, other volcanoes in the Cascades pose a more immediate threat (where immediate means possibly in my lifetime). For example, you won’t find me moving to a river valley within sight of Mt Rainier. And you can see Rinier from a long ways away.

    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/mountsthelens/rain12.shtml

  117. Ron de Haan says:

    TitiXXXX1892 (03:53:15) :

    “Reminded me of that story, which I think I found on WUWT at first

    How to construct a world-wide panic

    The essential elements of an effective global panic consist of two parts:

    First, one needs to identify a potential source of a world-wide catastrophe. Second, one needs to convince everyone that that actions of man are about to trigger that catastrophe. This is best illustrated by this following theoretical example:

    It is well known that a “Super Volcano” lies under Yellowstone park. This volcano went undetected for many years, because its sheer size is so large it escaped notice when looking for something more familiar in size.

    The consequences of another eruption of this monster can be fairly well predicted. First, it will simply blow away a fair-sized piece of Montana, and falling ash will bury cities for many miles beyond. The atmospheric ejecta will blanket a large portion of the earth, blocking out the sun and producing a “nuclear winter” for a significant portion of mankind. Crop failures and other effects of rapid cooling will lead to the death of untold billions of both human and animal inhabitants.

    In fact, there are some significant geothermal and other indicators in Yellowstone that suggest this monster is again on the move. This has sparked at least one major television presentation discussing the potential for another eruption and the obvious catastrophe that would follow if it does. But this information in itself has not created much in the way of panic. Most citizens are resigned to the fact that mega-disasters, should they occur, can not be prevented by human action because they are part of the natural behavior of the planet and worrying excessively can not change anything. Don’t worry, be happy, we’re all in this together.

    To turn the Yellowstone Super Volcano into a world-wide panic, we need a convincing piece of junk science as a trigger. Taking our cue from the “man-made CO2 is causing global warming” hoax, here’s one distinct possibility as far as Yellowstone is concerned:

    Professor Wilfred Brimstone at the University of Mongolia has developed a model which clearly shows the buildup of human population on both the east and west coast of the United States is putting excessive pressure on both sides of the North American plate. The accumulation of vast amounts of additional weight in the form of people, buildings, automobiles, and other man-made items is creating such an excess of plate pressure at the edges, that magma is being forced laterally toward the center of the country, and in particular towards a weak crust zone in Montana centered at Yellowstone park. In the same manner as popping a pimple by squeezing from two opposing sides, the “coastal weight effect” is squeezing the magma beneath the crust and causing a rapid pressure buildup of the Yellowstone Super Volcano. Man’s greed to live near the ocean has tipped the balance of nature, and it is now only a matter of time until Yellowstone blows its top.

    ….. unless we take quick action to arrest and reverse this process.

    It is critically important to immediately evacuate everyone from both coasts, and dismantle all heavy structures and begin transporting them to the center of the country, redistributing them evenly over a wide area until the overall plate pressure has been suitably equalized and the danger has passed. Senator Barbara Boxer has introduced a bill which will impose a stiff tax on any item weighing more than six ounces in order to pay for the weight relocation. A new $100 million Center for Building Weight Studies is currently under construction in Santa Barbara.

    If you do not want to be dislocated from your present home, former Vice President Al Gore has just formed a new company, Relocation Unlimited, in which you can invest in “weight offsets” and not have to move. For a price, Mr. Gore will arrange have an equivalent weight of ordinary dirt dug up and relocated instead of your own 3 bedroom ranch.

    It is also of immediate importance that we educate our children in the nature of this pending disaster that their parents’ over-building has created. Children everywhere should quickly make costumes that resemble blocks of concrete and conduct ritualistic marches in the general direction of the central Midwest. This, combined with the waving of signs and the singing of Kumbaya will quickly spread the word throughout the public school system and draw the attention of the mainstream media which is also critical to this effort. Working together, we can all stem this rapidly looming disaster.

    incidentally, you can purchase your STOP YELLOWSTONE NOW t-shirts by visiting our online store, and our book by the same name is available on Amazon.com. A prime time television special is currently in production”.

    And you believe that?

  118. Llanfar says:

    J.Hansford. (10:07:53) :

    Personally I think the world will be destroyed by mutant hamsters…. Rustling and scurrying, little beady eyes, watching….. always watching…. ;-)

    Everyone knows that it’s Skynet, dude

  119. King of Cool says:

    Karl and crosspatch, thank you for your corrections and reassuring comments about the life of sun and earth. Mine was just a light, not very well researched banter on the perspective of little picture – Gore and big picture – universe. Next time I go swimming I will keep in the shallow end.

  120. davidgmills says:

    I say we pump the chamber with water, then add some ping pong balls to float the “boat” so to speak. Then we slowly pump the water out. We can raise the necessary revenue with taxes.

  121. E.M.Smith says:

    hotrod (04:35:00) :
    It would certainly test the hypothesis of global cooling due to volcanic ass injection into the atmosphere.

    Would that be when it blows all our posteriors into the air? ;-)

  122. Philip_B says:

    I’m more concerned about NORTH COAST OF PAPUA, INDONESIA.

    Indonesia has a lot of big volcanoes.
    Big nasty volcanoes.

    Suprisingly, Indonesian Papua doesn’t have any volcanos that we know about (Holocene eruptions). Despite being on the Ring of Fire with numerous volcanos in surrounding areas.

  123. Karl Heuer says:

    crosspatch-

    the Sun has gotten ~300 degrees Kelvin hotter since it entered the Main Sequence about 4.57 Billion years ago — it will not get appreciably hotter , or more luminous until it starts burning helium – A little over 4GY in the future

    The Sun will not be luminous enough to kill all plant life on Earth in 900 Million years — as KOC posited.

    Subduction will not stop in 125 or even 250MY

    The Earth’s Core will still be 7000 degrees in 250MY (maybe 200 degrees C lower than today, maybe not) — the upper mantle will be between 800 degrees F and 1600 degrees F – the lower still 2500-6000 Subduction will still be going on

  124. canadada says:

    …. hmmm, I’m trying to figure out who has greater ‘control’ of the current global zeitgeist at the moment – ‘weather forecasters’ or ‘financial analysts’ … ? Seriously.

    … let’s apply ‘chaos theory’ to both these models … and what do we SEE?

    Repetative ebbing AND flowing, exponential expanding AND contracting, and much that is RANDOM, UNKNOWN and UNIMAGINED by lotsa puny little humans …

    o’my, o’my, what’s a girl to do? what to THINK?

    Well, I find the synchronicity between the potential cataclysmic ‘supra-eruption’ and the historic ‘crowning’ of a the next American President somewhat, ah, intriguingly coincidental … …. no?

    Seems like – Timing is Everything in these here Patterns of Evolution.

  125. Karl Heuer says:

    The Earth’s Core and Mantle temperatures will still be plenty hot for the next 2 Billion Years — Core Temps >5000 F and Mantle Temps between 800 and 1600 F (the mantle only cools by 50-75 degrees K per GY.

  126. Ed Scott says:

    2008 Coldest Year Since 2000 and Clearly Not a Top Ten Warmest Year
    Jan 09, 2009
    By Joseph D’Aleo, CCM, AMS Fellow

    MSU Satellite Temperatures Continue to Diverge from Global Data Bases

    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/MSU_Satellite_Temperatures_Continue_to_Diverge_from_Global_Data_Bases.pdf

  127. George Bruce (10:31:48) : “Obviously we need to reconsider human sacrifice…”

    Not at awl, brethren and cistern! Awl yew haff to dew is appease Almight-T-Gawud for your sins! Sin awffsets will be on sale in the lobby as soon as you’ve watched my movie, “An Incontinent Truth.”

  128. Karl Heuer says:

    crosspatch

    Mars lost its atmosphere due to low planetary mass, and a very weak magnetic field — that was apparently quite lopsided to begin with — strong in the Southern Hemi — weak in the North — leading to atmosphere removal — even with a magnetic field

    Mars only has 11% the mass of Earth — 1/3 the gravity — that is the main reason for the thin atmosphere — the thin atmosphere is the reason it is so affected by the solar wind

    Venus has a very weak magnetic field also — but with a mass close to that of earth –its atmosphere is much denser — and creates a strong ionosphere that protects from solar wind atmospheric removal

  129. crosspatch says:

    I am well aware of that, Karl, which is one reason Earth has retained so much atmoshere to date. Venus is apparently has very active volcanism which keeps the atmosphere recharged with fresh gasses.

    Gasses are constantly being stripped out of the atmosphere by the solar wind and by such things as disruptions by large flares that are directed at Earth. They are replaced by volcanism. Stop volcanism and you stop those gasses being replaced. And at the same time, if you constantly turn the heat up from the sun over time, as it does when it ages, you are eventually left with a rock.

    We could probably get an atmosphere going again on mars by doing something like A: intentionally crash Phobos into the planet since it is in an unstable orbit and is going to crash into Mars anyway in another million or two years, just get that overwith now. B: Drill a very, very deep hole and intentionally drop enough fissionable material down that hole to cause a “melt down” (intentionally not enough moderator). Then stand back and wait a few million years. Heck, you might just want to go collecting up asteroids all through the belt and send them into Mars. Some serious bombardment would begin to heat the place back up again.

  130. Jeff Alberts says:

    jorgekafkazar (15:05:07) :

    George Bruce (10:31:48) : “Obviously we need to reconsider human sacrifice…”

    Not at awl, brethren and cistern! Awl yew haff to dew is appease Almight-T-Gawud for your sins! Sin awffsets will be on sale in the lobby as soon as you’ve watched my movie, “An Incontinent Truth.”

    Don’t forget the free lemonade!

  131. Robinson says:

    I think it’s worth noting that seismic recording has only been going on for a few decades here. We have no way of knowing if this is “normal”; it may have happened many times before. In all probability, given the speed with which scientists come out and spout crap about anything these days, I’d say it’s probably benign and that there’s nothing to worry about.

  132. Jim Arndt says:

    This will also stop global warming.

  133. King of Cool says:

    Pearland Aggie (04:46:24) :
    I guess this is a new sunspot that will end the spotless streak…looks fairly legit.

    Cycle 24 begins!

    http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2008/10jan_solarcycle24.htm


    REPLY:
    Um, that was last January. And I scooped NASA on it days before they had the story, see here:

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2008/01/04/solar-cycle-24-has-officially-started/

  134. David S says:

    I may be able to spin this into an excuse for not shoveling snow tomorrow.

  135. Eloise says:

    I used to watch docos on the Discovery Channel, and some about Volcanoes, and they basically said Yellowstone could errupt at any given time and that’s been proven indefinetely compared to AGW. Good thing I’m in Australia xD

    Eloise

  136. H.R. says:

    @Smokey (06:19:29) :

    “If Yellowstone blows, at least one human will survive to carry on: click”

    LOL Great satire!

    However, ummmm… I think it requires a specific combination of two humans to perpetuate the species ;0)

  137. len says:

    I hope it holds off a bit. I need to get used to the sun shutting off first. If this does go then forget mild ‘Grand Minimum’ … we’re in for a Sporer and Maunder double whammy. It’s going to be 200 years before we get back to the 70’s let alone 80’s. That should do in wheat farming just south of the 60th parrallel ;)

  138. Julie L says:

    hotrod (04:35:00) : The Yellowstone super volcano would totally re-define the term major disaster if it decided to blow in modern times. It would certainly test the hypothesis of global cooling due to volcanic ass injection into the atmosphere.

    (I hope I did the blockquote correctly…)

    hotrod, you made my day!
    Here I am, home sick (CFS??), and I’ve been giggling all day over the volcanic ass injection. That’s the most memorable thing I’ve seen on this blog (heck, ANY blog) in years!

    :D :D

    Thanks for the giggles!

    Anthony, I haven’t commented in ages – must thank you again for this blog. Awesome job, dude.

  139. Grant Hodges says:

    Hi Fred,

    Thanks for your comment.

    Since there is probably some warm-up lag between air temp and ice melt, perhaps something definitive could be said if 5 years from now, we’re still in a cooling phase and the sea is still rising by anything above statistical noise.

    re: anthropomorphic – I’m supposed to know that. LOL

  140. King of Cool says:

    REPLY: Um, that was last January. And I scooped NASA on it days before they had the story, see here:

    Oops, what a difference a year makes. Thanks Anthony, hope you scoop them again. I’ll get back the wading pool.

  141. Cathy says:

    @Julie L !

    Ah! the rewards of reading all the comments.

    I needed a chuckle, too. Hope you’re feeling better, soon.

    Thanks for pointing out that great typo courtesy of Hotrod.

    ” . . I’ve been giggling all day over the volcanic ass injection. That’s the most memorable thing I’ve seen on this blog (heck, ANY blog) in years!

    :D :D”

    Yep. Memorable.

    (You DO think it was a typo – don’t you? I mean he wouldn’t have done that on purpose . . . . .:D

  142. Ray Reynolds says:

    I have to wonder…well ok, I have to wonder about everything, but if the thin fragile skin of the earth were to cool and contract would that not put more pressure of the earths molten core to breach the surface?

    Hey…go vote!

  143. insurgent says:

    Don’t worry. I have it on good authority that it won’t blow until 2012! ;)

  144. Mister Jones says:

    According to the USGS there was a similar ‘swarm’ of earthquakes back in 2004 and there was no cataclysm. Larger ‘swarms’ were reported in 1985 and 1995, yet pointing this wouldn’t sell any newspapers, or make people watch weally scawy TV ‘documentaries’ would it?

    The last paragraph of the 2004 USGS report linked to makes mention of the probable cause of the 2004 ‘swarm’ being migration of hot water and gas, not magma. Soo, don’t book the ‘end of the world’ party just yet.
    2008 report: http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/yvo/activity/
    2004 report: http://volcanoes.usgs.gov/yvo/publications/2004/apr04swarm.php

  145. crosspatch says:

    “Karl Heuer (14:49:03) :

    crosspatch-

    the Sun has gotten ~300 degrees Kelvin hotter since it entered the Main Sequence about 4.57 Billion years ago — it will not get appreciably hotter , or more luminous until it starts burning helium – A little over 4GY in the future”

    That is absolutely not true. We can find lots of references. one of the more generous gives us a billion years most give 250 to 500 million. There’s a little more detail here

    And, Kasting said, a cataclysmic finale may come even sooner. As Earth becomes a global desert, carbon dioxide levels are expected to drop. At a certain level, which he and his colleagues say might be achieved in half a billion years, there would not be enough carbon dioxide to support photosynthesis, and most plants would die.

    Remaining plants would not be sufficient to support a biosphere, Kasting contends. So while the entire planet might incinerated in a few billion years, or cast off into a deep freeze, it’s possible that life on Earth is already in the sunset years.

    “If we calculated correctly, Earth has been habitable for 4.5 billion years and only has a half-billion years left,” Kasting said

    And I have heard this same scenario from more sources. The sun is getting brighter all the time though it may not be a constant, even increase. It might increase in steps. The sun will be about 40% brighter than it is now before it starts fusing helium. Earth will have been a dead rock for billions of years before that.

  146. Roger Carr says:

    America STOP Please being immediate re-cycling of Yellow Brick Road into very tall Yellow Brick Chimney atop Yellowstone National Park STOP Very tall STOP

  147. crosspatch says:

    Karl, more reference for you:

    The Sun is not exactly constant. After some hydrogen is used up at the center, the hydrogen fusion must proceed more vigorously to provide enough pressure, and the Sun becomes slightly more luminous with time . When the Sun was young 4x109years ago, the Sun was less luminous than now by 30%

    A star spends most of its time getting brighter as it ages. The Earth is about 80% through its span of time where it will be a habitable place for life. It is probably much beyond that, maybe 95% through its span if time where it is a habitable place for life like us.

  148. hotrod says:

    Thanks for pointing out that great typo courtesy of Hotrod.

    I’m glad I injected some humor into your day!

    :D

    It was not intentional, (although a Freudian slip cannot be ruled out, being well within my normal typing error range). Sometimes my keyboard has a mind of its own, and the mind is frequently well ahead of where the fingers are typing. I am not used to posting a no-edit environment, and need to keep that in mind as I proof read my posts.

    Larry

  149. J.Hansford. says:

    Jokes aside…. It must be an interesting time for vulcanologist’s at the moment…. It’s not everyday that the site of ancient super volcano becomes peculiarly active…. And of course, after the 2004 tsunami, I don’t really count the probability of possibilities out anymore… as long as they are scientifically feasible that is. Catastrophic AGW is bizarre.. No science nor observation to back it up… But a super volcano… We’ve had ‘em before, we can have ‘em again.

    It’d just be that we’d be the unluckiest generation around if it happened now, ’tis all.

  150. crosspatch says:

    “It’s not everyday that the site of ancient super volcano becomes peculiarly active”

    We have one in California that becomes active from time to time. We had a swarm of quakes there in the late 90’s. Long Valley caldera near Mammoth Lakes. There are a lot of hot springs in that area, too, and even an area where camping is not allowed because so much CO2 leaks out of the ground that it might kill anyone who decided to sleep on the ground in any kind of a depression. The CO2 level is so high in the soil that it has killed the trees in the area. I believe I read that the last time Long Valley erupted, it spread a layer of ash as far as Nebraska. It has erupted since with the Mono Craters, I think, being the latest eruption some 600 years ago.

    We might be due for some fireworks there, too:

    During the past 3,000 years the Mono-Inyo Craters have erupted at intervals of 700 to 250 years, the most recent eruptions being from Panum Crater and the Inyo Craters 500 to 600 years ago (Miller, 1985; Bursik and Sieh, 1986), and Paoha Island about 250 years ago (Stine, 1990)

  151. VG says:

    VG (01:26:04) :

    looks like NCEP has suddenly lost interest in comparing past snow cover LOL
    http://moe.met.fsu.edu/snow/ anyone know why?

  152. E.M.Smith says:

    While touring: http://www.smalldeadanimals.com/

    I ended up at:

    http://ca.news.yahoo.com/s/afp/090107/oddities/france_weather_snow_offbeat

    Europe seems to be getting walloped! And TWC is saying midwest to N.E. USA to get noze froze Real Soon Now…

    Is there a canonical record of these ‘odd’ events anywhere? And has anyone bothered to notice the frequent ~20-30 year ago pattern in when last seen? Almost like it was a 30 year weather cycle…

  153. Aviator says:

    E.M. Smith – …”And TWC is saying midwest to N.E. USA to get noze froze Real Soon Now…” Any chance it will hold until 20 January and cause a major freeze at the inauguration? Frostbite for the true believers would be an interesting diversion and perhaps lead to some realistic policies.

  154. deadwood says:

    Crosspatch:

    Mammoth Lakes Caldera is 6 miles in diameter while the Yellowstone Caldera is 45 miles across. Not at all in the same class.

  155. crosspatch says:

    “Almost like it was a 30 year weather cycle”

    PDO

  156. Pierre Gosselin says:

    According to this German news report, in Spain it’s the coldest winter in 35 years.

    http://klimakatastrophe.wordpress.com/2009/01/09/kaltester-winter-in-spanien-seit-35-jahren/

  157. Mike McMillan says:

    Just looked at the sun, and we have 4 or 5 modest spots in one group, and a real tight splortch on the magnetogram.

    Fox News story on NASA report –

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,478024,00.html

    ” … Obviously, the sun is Earth’s life blood,” said Richard Fisher, director of the Heliophysics division at NASA. “… it is vital that we better understand extreme space weather events caused by the sun’s activity.”

    “Space weather can produce solar storm … extreme currents … disrupting … blackouts … [end of world, etc, etc],” the report states. “Severe space weather also produces solar energetic particles and the dislocation of the Earth’s radiation belts, which can damage satellites … ”

    The race is on for better forecasting abilities, as the next peak in solar activity is expected to come around 2012.

    While the sun is in a lull now, activity can flare up at any moment, and severe space weather — how severe, nobody knows — will ramp up a year or two before the peak. Some scientists expect the next peak to bring more severe events than other recent peaks.

    Sorry, I can’t dwell on Jellystone; I have to worry about the sun, like, you know, 2012 is like tomorrow, just later.

  158. SunSword says:

    “A fake website bearing the USGS logo claims that an evacuation order has been issued for the park and surrounding area due to concern over the supervolcano erupting…” From here: Website Hoax

  159. MA says:

    Sorry if I’m just one of these evil sceptics that tries to calm down …serious things, but in an American lifetime the possibility that this will happen shold be 1/6000 if it happens every 600 000 years… Or? If it’s much more likely that this happens now, because it has not happen in a long time, let’s say 1 in 1000 during an Americans lifetime. But all Americans will not die from a super volcano. (The risk of dying may be 1 in 100 000.)

    At the same time the risk to die in a car accident for a man/woman in the Western world should be approximately 1 in 500 (in Sweden) and probably 1 in 200 in Greece (although this isn’t destroy nature and force ppl from their homes).

    Ah! Evil me (if the 1 in 1000 occurs).

  160. Somehow, this will all be blamed on Bush :D

  161. Peter says:

    MA:

    At the same time the risk to die in a car accident for a man/woman in the Western world should be approximately 1 in 500 (in Sweden) and probably 1 in 200 in Greece

    Furthermore, your chance of dying from any cause within the next 70 years is approximately 1 in 1.

    Doesn’t worry me in the slightest.

  162. Peter says:

    Stephen Schneider:

    “We cannot pin down whether sea levels will rise a few feet or a few meters in the next century or two”; that there is a “potential for up to 7 meters of sea-level rise stored as ice on Greenland”

    Then again, perhaps it will have the opposite effect.
    The Earth’s crust is considerably thinner below the oceans than below land, so any extra weight of water in the oceans may depress the crust more than the equivalent weight of ice over land, and so lead to a drop in sea levels.

  163. Frank Lansner says:

    UAH jan 2009 for now seems to find jan 2008 level. Its not that likely (?) that this would hold the rest of the month as it would be the biggest fall in UAH global temperatures in one month for several years. But still, interesting to follow.
    Graphic:

    Source: http://discover.itsc.uah.edu/amsutemps/

  164. tallbloke says:

    And of course, after the 2004 tsunami, I don’t really count the probability of possibilities out anymore…

    Just as a point of information, not trying to make any claims, but this event also occured at a time when the moon was full at the same time perigee occurred.
    Dec 27 19:16 406487km Full+1d 4h

  165. RICH says:

    Let’s try a reverse form of psychology, to see if it helps our alarmist friends;

    TEST:

    Q) Why are polar bears endangered?

    A) Because their population is increasing???

    —————

    Q) Why is CO2 a toxic pollutant?

    A) Because it’s essential to life???

    —————

    Q) Why are glaciers retreating?

    A) Because of 10,000 years of global warming???

    —————

    Q) Why will Florida soon be under water?

    A) Because of 1-2 mm rise in sea level???

    —————

    Q) Why is warmth bad?

    A) Because it sustains life???

    (Note: Look inside an actual GREENhouse.)

    —————

    FAILURE.

    Whenever you alarmists want to SNAP out of whatever trance you are in, please feel free to join the rest of us in reality.

    CONCLUSION.

    There is no impending climatic dooms day. You are sheep being tended to by deceptive and delusional shepherds. Man is {prophecizing} through the use of computers. Got that?

    Instead of wasting hundreds of billions of $dollars in climate research, why don’t we spend the money on realtime pestilence… cancer and disease.

    And the lunacy continues…

  166. Douglas DC says:

    I’ve done a lot of Snowpack surveys in that area as a Pilot, then fought several fires in
    Yellowstone (after ’88 -I missed the big circus) also as a Tanker Pilot. Has anyone noted anything unusual around and in the lake like ah, a rise in temperature?Melting
    snow and ice?…

  167. Mike Bryant says:

    WUWT and Climate Audit currently have about half the votes. Pharyngula, about half of what’s left. Real Climate is declining…

    Don’t forget to vote…

    I hope Hansen doesn’t get ahold of thos numbers.

  168. Mike Bryant says:

    Does anyone have any news about the glacier on Mt St. Helens?

  169. TonyB says:

    Frank Lansner

    WE know the reasons that Hansen wants to bolster the GISS figures, but how is he explaining ‘scientifically’ why his graphs are going in completely the opposite direction to everyone elses?

    tonyB

  170. Ric Werme says:

    Aviator (22:43:28) :

    E.M. Smith – …”And TWC is saying midwest to N.E. USA to get noze froze Real Soon Now…” Any chance it will hold until 20 January and cause a major freeze at the inauguration? Frostbite for the true believers would be an interesting diversion and perhaps lead to some realistic policies.

    It’s time to start the Inaugural Weather Watch. The GFS model for Jan 20 1200UTC (7 AM) at http://www.nco.ncep.noaa.gov/pmb/nwprod/analysis/namer/gfs/12/images/gfs_ten_240m.gif shows temps near freezing and a coastal storm forming to the SW.

    I don’t have time to dig deeper at the moment, but interested geeks can go to http://www.nco.ncep.noaa.gov/pmb/nwprod/analysis/namer/gfs/12/model_m.shtml and click on the leftmost column on the 240 hour row.

    Forecasts 10 days out are mostly fiction, so there will be lots to speculate over and argue about. :-)

  171. Tim Clark says:

    I went on a Chevy Chase family vacation to Yellowstone in 2005. I had last been there in 1965 with my parents. After 40 years, what surprised me the most (outside of a lackluster morning glory pool and dry mudpots) was the absolute devastation of Mammoth Hot Springs by the large numbers of unrestrained elk invading the Springs. They were there as we toured and approached within ten feet of us. I asked the available Park Ranger why they didn’t do something about them. He said regulations prohibited them from interfering with the wildlife (shortened abridged version). Yellowstone National Park is in greater of being destroyed by environmental wackos with fuzzy notions of Yogi and Bubba than by vulcanism.

  172. Neil Craig says:

    The 19th C had 2 major eruptions Tambora in 1815 and Krakatoa in 1997, both in Indonesia. The 20th C had none. Doesn’t mean that the pressure is building up & something big is inevitable but certainly our experience of what something big would be is coloured by the last century.

  173. Mike Bryant says:

    It seems that the glacier at Mt. St Helens has not been named. I propose that this large and growing glacier be named Glacier Gore.

  174. Eloise (16:39:00) :I used to watch docos on the Discovery Channel, and some about Volcanoes, and they basically said Yellowstone could errupt at any given time

    I’m thankful for WUWT to out-document the docos.

    BTW, what proportion of our planetary temperature comes from the heat way down below, and not from the Sun? How big a factor is it in global warming/cooling …?

  175. crosspatch says:

    “Does anyone have any news about the glacier on Mt St. Helens?”

    The two arms (east and west) merged last summer. Once in a while the CVO will post pictures here.

    Currently there is a series of pictures for comparison.

  176. pkatt says:

    George Bruce (10:31:48) :
    Obviously we need to reconsider human sacrifice……….

    Burn the witch .. !! Burn the witch!!
    Oh wait that’s me:P

    Honestly most of you folks are sounding like a Yellowstone erruption movie I saw on the Sci fi channel once:P The fact that its wiggling and shaking might indicate a release of pressure. I wonder has the bulge on that side of the lake dropped at all? I think they put gps instruments in at one point, be interesting to see.

    If you are afraid, educate yourself. This site will show you all the earthquakes in the world and you can zoom down to smaller areas and even see a running 7 day animation of earthquakes.. they happen often but are rarely distructive.

    http://earthquake.usgs.gov/eqcenter/recenteqsus/

    And.. there are usually no less than 15 active volcanos around the world at any given time. Some are regulars on the list some are new. I think the biggest scientific discovery of our current time is that there is no such thing as a dormant volcano:)

    http://www.volcano.si.edu/reports/usgs/

    They burp, they spew ash into our atmosphere, they release pressure from our plate movements. Get used to just being along for the ride because you arent at the wheel when it comes to the sun, the earth or the weather:)

  177. Dave says:

    Can we do anything about super volcanoes?

    May seem like a dumb question, but perhaps it isnt.

    Presumably a super volcano blows when it builds up a certain energy level, which is too much for the crust above it to hold back. That energy level builds up over thousands and thousands of years, so when it blows, it gives off a massive amount of energy in an eruption.

    But what if we put lots of geothermal powerstations on these volcanos? That would take away some of the energy that is building up there. If you were able to take enough energy away, then in theory, as long as you take it away from the right place, the volcano shouldnt blow.

    And it would produce a lot of cheap energy as a by-product.

    Can someone tell me if I am talking rubbish here?

    It seems to me that at the very least, an eruption could be delayed if you take away some of the volcano’s energy. Maybe by only a short time, but I would quite like every extra second I could get thank you.

  178. swampie says:

    Dave, I believe that was done on Pompeii by the aliens….now where did I see that? Oh, yeah, it was a Dr. Who episode!

  179. Frank Lansner says:

    TonyB

    I hope when everybody can see that there is no global warming people will want answers. I hope every paper wil be turned. I hope Hansen and everybody else with “Bad Karma” will be revealed to the world for what they are.
    I hope for full justice in court. If Hansen and others have something to hide, only then do i understand their fever like GW claims. I see desperation.

  180. Steve Moore says:

    Want to play “Volcano Trivia”?

    Name the only city in the US with an active volcano inside the city limits.

  181. Steve Moore says:

    Ooops!
    After some fact-checking, I need to revise that earlier post:

    1. It should be “Continental US”

    2. It depends on one’s definition of “Active”. There are two cities with volcanoes within their limits, but from what I’ve read, one is considered “extinct”.

  182. Ric Werme says:

    Dave (14:07:22) :

    Presumably a super volcano blows when it builds up a certain energy level, which is too much for the crust above it to hold back. That energy level builds up over thousands and thousands of years, so when it blows, it gives off a massive amount of energy in an eruption.

    The buildup isn’t steady. The current Yellow earthquake swarm isn’t associated with movement of magma. If magma were moving, we’d see “harmonic tremors” in the seismic data, and we don’t.

    But what if we put lots of geothermal powerstations on these volcanos? That would take away some of the energy that is building up there. If you were able to take enough energy away, then in theory, as long as you take it away from the right place, the volcano shouldnt blow.

    I’m not sure how deep the hotspot under Yellowstone is. Perhaps you can look it up and let us know. You’d certainly want to tap the energy in the hotspot, just tapping the energy in the topmost several miles might harden that, but that might lead to a bigger explosion when if fails. Of course, cracking due to cooling might leave it weaker and hasten the eruption.

    Geotthermal areas that are tapped greatly weaken features like geysers, hot springs, etc. It would be a shame to lose the best parts of Yellowstone to something that won’t make things safer.

    And it would produce a lot of cheap energy as a by-product.

    Not so cheap – geothermal water is quite corrsive and mineral laden. Cheap enough, though.

    It seems to me that at the very least, an eruption could be delayed if you take away some of the volcano’s energy. Maybe by only a short time, but I would quite like every extra second I could get thank you.

    So, where has your research concluded is the safest place to live and have you moved there?

  183. Ric Werme says:

    Mike Bryant (10:43:35) :

    It seems that the glacier at Mt. St Helens has not been named. I propose that this large and growing glacier be named Glacier Gore.

    It is called Crater Glacier and I presume that’s an official name. It’s been interesting watching it be pushed around by the 2004-2008 eruption. A pretty good photo of the east and west arms the dome is the first one at http://vulcan.wr.usgs.gov/Volcanoes/MSH/Images/MSH04/crater_dome_eruption_july_2008.html .

    http://vulcan.wr.usgs.gov/Volcanoes/MSH/NatMonument/PointsInterest/lava_dome.html is from 2006, not how far apart the to arms are. Also note how filthy the glacier is thanks to ash, rockfalls, etc.

  184. Jeff Alberts says:

    Steve Moore. Los Angeles is one. I believe.

  185. Karl Heuer says:

    crosspatch:

    The Sun is expected to reach its hottest surface temperature (~5900K) in ~3GY (7.5GY age +/- .3). After that it will cool.

    At that time the luminosity is estimated to be 26% higher than today, based on a 70% proto-Sol ignition Luminosity

    Funny thing that,

    4.57 GYa at ignition, Sol was somewhere betwen .7 and 1.07 times as luminous, depending on what paper you read concerning solar evolution, and how to resolve the warm young earth with a 70% as luminous Sun. Some theorists posit a huge mass loss early-on , some posit an ignition luminosity of 85% that of present, and some 70%

    IF we take the middle road, which is just as valid as the others, that gives us an increase in luminosity of 15% relative to today’s luminance. That works out to 3.2% per GY (15%/4.56GY).

    At that rate it would take 3GY to approach the +10% flux limit proposed by some scientist to result in a highly water vapor saturated atmosphere, and stratospheric loss of water — losing the oceans to space, assumptions largely based on the same science used to construct the highly accurate (cough, snicker) climate forecasting models used by the IPCC and other charlatans.

  186. anna v says:

    Dave (14:07:22) :

    Can we do anything about super volcanoes?

    May seem like a dumb question, but perhaps it isnt.

    Presumably a super volcano blows when it builds up a certain energy level, which is too much for the crust above it to hold back. That energy level builds up over thousands and thousands of years, so when it blows, it gives off a massive amount of energy in an eruption.

    But what if we put lots of geothermal powerstations on these volcanos? That would take away some of the energy that is building up there. If you were able to take enough energy away, then in theory, as long as you take it away from the right place, the volcano shouldnt blow.

    And it would produce a lot of cheap energy as a by-product.

    Hmm, some engineering problems here. Just for fun:

    First of all to release the pressure build up one would have to dig down to the magma layer, since the pressure builds up because the main outlet gets blocked. You would need wells, like oil wells.

    Suppose one could go down to the magma feeding the volcano, the probability it would blow there and then where the well is should be very high.

    On the other hand, if one had a way of seeing the magma then making ten or a hundred such wells might do the trick.

    In any case, this means that money and effort should be spent in studying these possibly real dangers , instead of chasing the shadow of CO2.

  187. Steve Moore says:

    Jeff Alberts:

    The only ones I know of are Mt. Tabor in Portland ,Oregon, and Pilot Butte in Bend, Oregon.

    Bend is not a place I’d want to live. It’s located between the Sisters and the Newberry Caldera — both active areas.

  188. Jeff Alberts says:

    Steve Moore, I thought LaBrea was considered a mildy active volcano. Or maybe I watch too many movies ;)

  189. Jeff Alberts says:

    Lol, you’re right Steve, I do watch too many movies. La Brea isn’t associated with volcanism at all.

  190. shonny says:

    I am personally keeping close watch on the seismic activity in the area and if I see anything ominous I’ll let you know. As soon as I finish packing and driving about 2,000 miles to the south of here.

    Maybe this time it would be the Mexicans closing their borders to the scourge from the North?
    Poetic justice?
    If only it would happen in Israel as well!

  191. beng says:

    **********
    Dave (14:07:22) :

    Can we do anything about super volcanoes?

    May seem like a dumb question, but perhaps it isnt.

    Presumably a super volcano blows when it builds up a certain energy level, which is too much for the crust above it to hold back. That energy level builds up over thousands and thousands of years, so when it blows, it gives off a massive amount of energy in an eruption.

    But what if we put lots of geothermal powerstations on these volcanos? That would take away some of the energy that is building up there. If you were able to take enough energy away, then in theory, as long as you take it away from the right place, the volcano shouldnt blow.

    And it would produce a lot of cheap energy as a by-product.

    Can someone tell me if I am talking rubbish here?
    ********

    Not a bad idea if done on a large scale — ala Iceland. Wouldn’t have to drill to the magma — just above it would be sufficient. The amount of steam heat that generates electricity could be significant.

    But if destructive elk can’t even be thinned because of the envirowackos, do you think any industrial activity would be allowed in Yellowstone? Never happen.

  192. LeftCoastCurmudgeon says:

    I really doubt the hypothesis that this increase in activity in the Yellowstone Caldera is being caused by population concentrations in the US coastal regions.

    Anyone with an ounce of savvy would understand that it was unquestionably caused by the “no-bid” contract Bush and Cheney gave to EvilHaliburton to create waterfront property near the huge inland sea which will be created when they engineer the super-eruption.

    This information was gleaned from a definitive follow-up New York Times report after the one detailing how GWB and “Darth Vader” Cheney steered Hurricane Katrina directly into New Orleans because – as reported by Kanye West – Mr. Bush doesn’t care about black people.

  193. Ranger Joe says:

    The curiousity of a layman wonders about all those huge volcanoes on Mars and the fact that Mars still has a molten core. What are the chances that a huge simultaneous eruptions eons ago ripped the atmosphere to shreds and are responsible for the cold dead rusty planet we have now? Mt. Olympus looks like a planet devouring monster! Maybe when Mars blew up the alien hamsters evacuated to earth and evolved into humans.

  194. E.M.Smith says:

    Frank Lansner (15:11:26) :
    TonyB
    I hope when everybody can see that there is no global warming people will want answers. I hope every paper wil be turned. I hope Hansen and everybody else with “Bad Karma” will be revealed to the world for what they are.
    I hope for full justice in court.

    I expect it to be just like the discovery that tri-stearate does nothing to cholesterol, yet trans fats will kill you. Go the grocery store. Look at the margarine. Many are still 1/3 trans fat. OK, so how many people died of heart attacks from eating ‘heart healthy’ trans fat laden margarine as the experts instructed? Where is all the press release saying “Oh, nevermind, we were wrong. Sorry.”? AGW will be just like that. It will just quietly fade away and Hansen will get a nice retirement package and life will wander on to the next ‘crisis’…

Comments are closed.