UPDATE: Scientists Eye Unusual Swarm of Yellowstone Quakes


For three straight days, Yellowstone National Park has been shaken by a serise of small earthquakes. Scientists are watching to see whether the tremors are signaling something bigger to come. (ABC News Photo Illustration)

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) – Yellowstone National Park was jostled by a host of small earthquakes for a third straight day Monday, and scientists watched closely to see whether the more than 250 tremors were a sign of something bigger to come. Swarms of small earthquakes happen frequently in Yellowstone, but it’s very unusual for so many earthquakes to happen over several days, said Robert Smith, a professor of geophysics at the University of Utah.

“They’re certainly not normal,” Smith said. “We haven’t had earthquakes in this energy or extent in many years.”

Smith directs the Yellowstone Seismic Network, which operates seismic stations around the park. He said the quakes have ranged in strength from barely detectable to one of magnitude 3.8 that happened Saturday. A magnitude 4 quake is capable of producing moderate damage.

“This is an active volcanic and tectonic area, and these are the kinds of things we have to pay attention to,” Smith said. “We might be seeing something precursory.

Related article:
Yellowstone National Park Hit by Hundreds of Small Earthquakes (Bloomberg)

“Could it develop into a bigger fault or something related to hydrothermal activity? We don’t know. That’s what we’re there to do, to monitor it for public safety.”

Read moreUPDATE: Scientists Eye Unusual Swarm of Yellowstone Quakes

Eruption of 3 volcanoes has scientists asking questions

PUZZLE: Is there a common thread or were events just coincidence?

How likely is it that three neighboring volcanoes would all erupt at the same time — as the Kasatochi, Okmok and Cleveland volcanoes in the Aleutians did this summer?

About as likely as a storm that only appears once in a thousand years, says Anchorage volcanologist Peter Cervelli, who’ll deliver a paper on the subject this winter to the American Geophysical Union.

In other words, seldom enough that Cervelli is now exploring the question of whether Alaska’s triple eruption was only a coincidence involving three independent volcanoes or whether it was triggered by some common mechanism.

Read moreEruption of 3 volcanoes has scientists asking questions

Hawaii: Volcano spews greater amount of lava than ever before

A volcano in Hawaii has begun to spew lava in greater quantities than witnessed ever before, experts have warned.

The lava flow from Kilauea, which has been erupting on and off for 25 years, started on Nov 21 last year. But experts said that more lava is spilling from the volcano and into the ocean than usual.

Officials at the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory said that the lava is emerging near the Pacific on the southeastern side of the state’s Big Island. A surface flow is snaking eastwards from the crater, while underground “tubes” are also expelling lava into the ocean.

See what is really going on at the RSOE Alertmap – The Infinite Unknown

Read moreHawaii: Volcano spews greater amount of lava than ever before

30,000 Scientists Rejecting Global Warming Hypothesis

Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine (OISM)

Who: Dr. Arthur Robinson of the OISM

What: release of names in OISM “Petition Project”

When: 10 AM, Monday May 19

Where: Holeman Lounge at the National Press Club, 529 14th St., NW, Washington, DC

Why: The Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine (OISM) will announce that more than 31,000 scientists have signed a petition rejecting claims of human-caused global warming. The purpose of OISM’s Petition Project is to demonstrate that the claim of “settled science” and an overwhelming “consensus” in favor of the hypothesis of human-caused global warming and consequent climate damage is wrong. No such consensus or settled science exists. As indicated by the petition text and signatory list, a very large number of American scientists reject this hypothesis.

It is evident that 31,072 Americans with university degrees in science – including 9,021 PhDs, are not “a few.” Moreover, from the clear and strong petition statement that they have signed, it is evident that these 31,072 American scientists are not “skeptics.”

CONTACT: Audrey Mullen, +1-703-548-1160, for the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine

/PRNewswire-USNewswire — May 15/

SOURCE Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine

Source: Street Insider

Eruptions subside at Sicily’s Mount Etna

The eruptions that have shaken the Mount Etna volcano on the southern Italian island of Sicily have subsided, experts said Sunday at the Palermo Geophysics and Volcanology Institute.The eruptions, which started Saturday afternoon, died away towards 9:30 p.m. (1930 GMT) the same evening.

“Seismic activity has returned to normal,” a technician told AFP.

The eruption, accompanied by streams of lava, had started between 3 and 4:00 p.m. local time on the volcano’s southeast crater.

The last eruption of Mount Etna was in November last year, two months after another eruption forced a temporary closure of nearby Catania airport due to flying lava and clouds of ash.

The last truly spectacular eruption was in the summer of 2001.

Sun May 11, 2:20 PM ET

Source: AFP

Chile volcano blasts ash 20 miles high, forcing evacuations

SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — The long-dormant Chaiten volcano blasted ash some 20 miles (30 kilometers) into the Andean sky on Tuesday, forcing the last of thousands to evacuate and fouling a huge stretch of the South American continent.

A thick column of ash climbed into the stratosphere and blew eastward for hundreds of miles (kilometers) over Patagonia to the Atlantic Ocean, closing schools and a regional airport. Chilean and Argentine citizens were advised to wear masks to avoid breathing the dangerous fallout.

Chilean officials ordered the total evacuation of Chaiten, a small provincial capital in an area of lakes and glacier-carved fjords just six miles (10 kilometers) from the roiling cloud.

Interior Minister Edmundo Perez said anyone still in the area should “urgently head to ships in the bay to be evacuated.”

More than 4,000 people were evacuated over the weekend and 350 more headed out Tuesday.

Also emptied was the soot-coated border town of Futaleufu, about 75 miles (120 kilometers) from the volcano.

The five-day-old eruption is the first in 9,370 years, said Charles Stern, a volcanologist at the University of Colorado-Boulder who has studied Chaiten.

He said the nearby town could end up buried, much like the Roman city of Pompeii following Mount Vesuvius’ eruption in 79 A.D. Volcanic material from Chaiten’s last eruption measured up to 5 feet in places.

“What happens after today is anybody’s guess,” Stern said.

Read moreChile volcano blasts ash 20 miles high, forcing evacuations