It’s not new to hear that Yellowstone National Park is a giant super-volcano, but new research adds some detail to what we know about the plumbing underneath.
It turns out there’s a reservoir of very hot and molten rock sitting ten to thirty miles below the surface, warmed from beneath by a scary plume of nasty Earth’s-core-grade magma.
Here’s my favorite line from the Washington Post article – “This is a volcano that can erupt either in a big way or a truly colossal and catastrophic way.”
It’s nice to know we have choices.
One gets the impression that were this baby to blow, it would have an effect everywhere and you could count on a level of personal inconvenience well beyond having to some wash dust off the windows.
But on the global disaster hand-wringing scale it’s hard to know how freaked out to be about this, since humans haven’t been around long enough to have witnessed the last Yellowstone eruption. Is it more or less troublesome than a meteor strike?
Or what if a rogue comet scored a direct hit on Earth with the point of impact right on top of the Yellowstone caldera? I know the odds are against it, which is why that disaster movie is probably already in production.
Oh for the innocent 1950’s, when the Earth’s center was filled with giant lizards and mushroom forests.
What’s your favorite disaster movie?