Scientists dismiss claims that Yellowstone supervolcano could erupt soon after a video with fleeing bison, who are presumably running away from an imminent cataclysm, had circumnavigated the world, but USGS warns that more earthquakes could rock the region in April. However, experts insist that the movements are normal and, although Yellowstone National Park experienced its largest earthquake in 34 years Sunday, the current volcano alert level is normal. The series of Earth movements is likely to continue in the current month, but Al Nash, chief of public affairs for the volcanic zone explains that there are 1,000 and 3,000 earthquakes on a yearly basis. Geologist Ilya N. Bindeman also believes that there are no reasons to panic as a massive eruption is unlikely to happen for at least one million years from now.
After dismissing claims that Yellowstone supervolcano is about to erupt, scientists state that earthquakes represent a normal occurrence in the area, so more movements could rock the park in April, but without any severe repercussions. According to the U.S. Geological Survey, a 4.7 event occurred on Sunday at 6:34 a.m. local time approximately four miles away north of Norris Geyser Basin in Wyoming, but the strike-slip motion may not even be linked to a volcanic process. YVO, the partnership between the USGS, Yellowstone NP and the University of Utah has been closely monitoring the volcanic activity in the park. The official statement of the observatory is that “the March 30 event was part of an earthquake series that began on March 27 and continues into April.” However, none of the upcoming earthquakes could cause the supervolcano to erupt, especially since there were at least four earthquakes out of about a hundred with magnitude three by the end of March and the parameters are still normal.
Yellowstone is in constant movement, so the existence of earthquakes should not cause panic, especially since it might not even be linked to volcanic activity, but to the rising and falling of the landscape.
Bison Fleeing Explanation
Yellowstone tweeted Thursday that the reason why animals leave the park is winter. According to the park’s professionals, mammals usually migrate to lower elevations outside of the park when food becomes scarce and, when the snow melts, they return to the area. Moreover, the viral video with fleeing bison was filmed long before Sunday’s earthquake, so there is no link between the animals’ movement and an upcoming supervolcano eruption.
Yellowstone National Park spokeswoman Amy Bartlett also stated that the bison fleeing is “a natural occurrence and not the end of the world,” and both park officials and government geologists assured the population that the volcano is not going to explode anytime soon. At the same time, Bindeman and his team analyzed the area and reached the conclusion that “Yellowstone is on a dying cycle, because three calderas have happened and collapsed,” which could mean that although the volcano will continue to produce magma, the production has reached lower levels. He stated that “a new eruption may happen somewhere in Montana,” but it will probably not occur in the next million years.
YVO has warned the population that more earthquakes could rock Yellowstone in April, but none of the past or future movements will activate the supervolcano. Both park officials and experts believe that the volcano is eons away from an eruption.
By Gabriela Motroc