Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Yellowstone Supereruption

Let's call it Area One. It's the 600-mile radius around the Yellowstone Caldera. Bill McGuire, professor of geohazards at University College London, considers a 600-mile radius to be deadly space during even a minimal supereruption. "Within a thousand kilometers, virtually all life would be killed by falling ash, lava flows, and the sheer explosive force of the eruption."
Some geologists now define 'supereruption' to mean at least 240 cubic miles of ejected material, which is identical to Yellowstone's last supereruption -- Yellowstone 3, aka, Lava Creek -- and about 960 times the quarter-cubic-mile of material ejected by St. Helens in 1980.
A quick and dirty calculation of counties included in Area One's 600-mile radius shows a current population of 19.8 million (estimates by the federal Census Bureau dated 01 July 2005). Unprepared, the vast majority of those will likely be dead or dying in the first days of a Yellowstone supereruption.
By recent scientific calculations using seismic data, the volume of Yellowstone's 80 x 40 x 8 km magma chamber is about 20,000 to 25,000 cubic km -- about 4800 to 6000 cubic miles. If Yellowstone 4 blows out just a quarter of its magma, the 1200 cubic miles spewed will be the largest known supereruption. Yellowstone 1, aka Huckleberry Ridge, about 2 million years ago, was 600 cubic miles of ejecta. Sumatra's Toba, about 74,000 years ago, was 720 cubic miles of ejecta. 1200 cubic miles of ejecta would be 4800 times St. Helens' 1980 blast. And it could happen tomorrow.
The actual size and date of the next Yellowstone supereruption is beside the point. The point is that our politicians have intentionally kept ordinary people unprepared. They want us to shop till we drop. Zero preparation is the point. Unprepared, a Yellowstone supereruption tomorrow, or twenty years from now, will be the nonfeasant murder of tens of millions of ordinary Americans -- by politicians of both parties, done in the corruption kickbacks and greed that fuel the superrichs' obscenely excessive profits.

------------------------------------

Zero preparedness threatens everyone living within 600 miles of Yellowstone. However, that specified radius -- from an interview of several geologists for a February 2000 BBC program -- has apparently been branded "alarmist" by Monkeybrain's regime. The map showing the 600-mile-radius -- what I'm calling 'Area One' -- is credited to the US Geological Survey on the Discovery Channel's site, but no longer appears on the USGS site. What does appear on the USGS site is a lot of no-worries pap stacked wide and deep.

The USGS no-worries pap is clearly social engineering designed to maintain government and the global economy for the benefit of the superrich. No fair spending the public money for public civil defense. Public money is for corporate welfare and the superrich.

Civil defense, once a robust arm of civil society but eviscerated for decades by the bought and paid for majority of superrich-representing politicians, is now FEMA's job. FEMA is where Monkeybrain's fascist goosesteppers are doing a heck of a good job securing their wardrobes and careers -- and not saying or doing anything to offend the Business Roundtable, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Bilderberg Group, or the unconstitutional, privately-owned, and treasonous Federal Reserve.

Despite the BBC programs on supervolcanoes that aired February 2000 and April 2005 -- and the executive summary presented to the FEMA hierarchy by the BBC and the program's scientists after the 2005 program -- FEMA still does not publish any preparedness guidelines for a supereruption.

You can search FEMA far and wide. No mention of radioactive volcanic ash fall appears. Their advice of what to do during a volcanic eruption is infantile, relative to a supereruption from which (1) evacuation might very well be impossible, and (2) roof-crushing radioactive ash might fall in heavily acidic rain for weeks, as far away as Dallas and Chicago. Needless to say, the states' disaster planning amounts to the same no-worries bureaucratic shuffle around short-term emergencies.

Despite FEMA's blind eye, the Yellowstone supereruption will not go away if we ignore it long enough. It is going to happen.

We have three supervolcano caldera in the western US. All of them are due to past-due. The Yellowstone Caldera, the Long Valley Caldera (SE of Yosemite in California), and the Valles Caldera (just west of Los Alamos, NM). Although the Valles Caldera is not as restless as the other two (which are currently making about 3,000 earthquakes per year), they are all capable of equaling Yellowstone 3 (240 cubic miles of ejecta). Continent-covering ash fall would be a killer component of any of their supereruptions. If just one goes off, the unprepared US and the whole world is in deep doo-doo.

Sumatra's Lake Toba supereruption, 74,000 years ago, caused a volcanic winter that probably lasted about six years. The evidence appears in ice cores taken from Greenland. The following thousand-year cold snap took the planet into the Ice Age that ended only 10,000 to 11,000 years ago. One supereruption. 64,000-year hangover.

Another downside. Many imminent scientists are considering scenarios in which multiple natural disasters of cataclysmic proportion are triggered in chain reactions -- by a space rock or space-rock storm, or one of the events themselves. A Yellowstone supereruption, a Long Valley supereruption, the San Andreas lock-up NW of Los Angeles cutting loose, the Cascadia Subduction Zone lock-up cutting loose on the NW coast, and lahars (hot volcanic mudflows) from Mt. Rainier devastating the southern Puget Sound area (into Tacoma) without much warning and without signs of a conventional eruption stand out as one glaring possibility of multiples.

Such chain reactions seem very reasonable. A storm of space rocks 1 km to 1.5 km in diameter (the dinosaur killer at Chicxulub is estimated at about 10 km in diameter) could blow out craters deep enough to explosively open either or both Yellowstone and Long Valley calderas to the atmosphere, easily leading to the chain reaction.

However, multiples are beyond the scope I've set here. Planning for a Yellowstone supereruption seems a good starting point for multiples preparedness. If we know what to do with the Yellowstone Area One, we'll know what to do with a Long Valley Area One.

Unprepared, we face communications failure, health care overload and breakdown; food and water contamination and scarcity; livestock death; food processing plants breakdown; mass starvation; residential cave-ins from ash load; masses of desperate homeless refugees; long-term loss of road and air transport to ash-fall effects; loss of prescription meds distribution; loss of petro-fuel processing and distribution -- just to name some of the problems.

Unprepared, the death toll inside Yellowstone Area One will be 10 to 20 million. We should expect the short term death toll outside Area One to be more tens of millions.

Of course, the corporations and superrich are preparing their fascist global economy to endure with only minimal loss of profits. Production facilities and jobs are already safely and profitably scattered off-shore. The global marketplace has been diversified away from America and into many populous off-shore areas. Monkeybrain's North American Union will spread the American national economy north and south of the borders. The NAU will also finally eliminate the people's rights and liberties under the American Constitution -- always a disruptor of billionaire profits.

Point is, the superrich are not banking on Yellowstone 4 being thousands of years from now, or, alternatively, being such a tiny little insignificant eruption that it can't possibly disturb their profits. They're clearly banking on desertion of America to keep their profits as stable as possible after Yellowstone 4 guts about two-thirds of the continental US. They are elite corruption-machine profit-makers, not natural-disaster half-way houses for the benefit of the rabble.

Middle East war profiteering should give the superrich and their Swiss bank accounts the boost needed for them to make it through the tough times ahead.

Still glad you allowed you rights and liberties to be taken by fascist government so that they can make Nazi-like aggressive war forever, and so that you and your family can be safe?

Still glad about all the time you've spent rebuilding the Democratic Party so that it can grab power from the Republinazis, without bringing any of the treasonous constitutional criminals to justice? So that fascist government can continue its pro-superrich policy of zero preparation -- to kill you and your family?

Still glad you've cocooned yourself away from populist remedies that are outside the box of predator-controlled party politics? (See the "Unity America" action plan in Open Letter To Susan and add nationally organized jury nullification.) Citizen preparation for Yellowstone 4 has the power to bridge and break the social, financial, and psychological cocooning that has paralyzed effective American citizen action for the past three decades. Connect with others. Prepare or die. Liberty or death.

Preparation is the only way to save people and prevent national collapse.

Earthquakes in a caldera, many scientists agree, mean that increasing pressure is breaking brittle rocks around and over the magma chamber, as the magma moves closer to the surface. Heat rises. There have been thousands of Yellowstone earthquakes in the past decade. USGS recorded 113 earthquakes there in the month of February 2007. No worries, of course, say the pap-masters. This is just normal.

Despite the pap-loaded party line from Monkeybrain's goosesteppers and superrich-controled ivory-tower types -- who have explanations for everything except zero preparation -- some prominent scientists continually say that Yellowstone 4 could happen tomorrow.

The fascist regime's main argument for the supereruption still being hundreds or thousands of years off in the future is as childishly vacuous, and as non sequitur, as they come.

All of this restless volcanic activity at Yellowstone, the vacuous argument goes, has been happening for about ten thousand years. Yellowstone is a restless caldera. Uplift and subsidence. New hydrothermal activity from crustal water heated by the magma below. It's all old news. It's all just normal. Therefore, nothing will happen in the foreseeable future.

As if heat does not rise. As if magma does not rise to the surface. As if magma just loiters around in some underground honeycomb condo for ten thousand years.

As if ten thousand years of the Yellowstone magma rising to the surface is no precursor to a supereruption.

As if not being able to stop it means that preparation is futile.

As if preparing for it is something that nobody could have imagined.

Very similar to the Monkeybrain goosesteppers' claim that nobody could have imagined airliners as bombs for the 9/11 attacks. Very similar to the Monkeybrain goosesteppers' claim that nobody could have imagined the breakdown of levies at New Orleans. Are we clear? Monkeybrain's goosesteppers have no imagination and lie their asses off about everything.

As if preparation for the supereruption would not tap off the public and private spending that benefits corporate welfare, the superrich, and the central banking war profiteers most of all.

Cooking for the next supereruption has not been going on for 10,000 years. It has been going on for about 640,000 years. The source is a relentless "mantle plume" hot spot, continually feeding new magma upward.

When the cooking breaks through to the surface -- by earthquake, cap rock melted away until it's too thin and weak to hold the pressure from below, space rock impact, al Qeada suitcase nuc, or whatever -- about 1200 cubic miles of molten, explosive rhyolite could blow up in our faces.

For the past fourteen years at least -- since NASA infrared scanning discovered the true extent of the Yellowstone Caldera in 1993 (doff of cap to Lawrence Joseph in his excellent 2007 book, Apocalypse 2012) -- any responsible government representing all the people would have been prepping citizens to survive the coming supereruption.

Stockpiling safe and renewable sources of food, water, and medicines; building disaster-proof communications; defining self-sustaining communities, and building underground shelters for them that are under survivable above-ground structures (the Swiss style, in poured and reinforced concrete, with blast doors at least 8 feet thick); and providing incentives for relocation out of Area One's 600-mile radius would be just the tip of the preparation iceberg.

But, noooooo. We've got to have an unconstitutional, felonious, and treasonous invasion of Iraq. We've got to have aggressive, internationally criminal warfare in the Middle East forever, so that the global billionaires can war-profiteer off the backs of dead and maimed US soldiers. We've got to bankrupt the US for war-profiteering so that low-income social programs can be tossed into the Reagan-Bush voodoo-economics toilet. No fair spending public money for the public. That money belongs to the billionaires.

Outside Area One's 600-mile blast-kill area -- the first ring of doom (with apologies to L. Joseph in A-2012) -- ash fall will be the second ring of doom. Well, if it's not overmatched by the radiation ring of doom. Radioactive minerals, such as uranium U-235, are a natural part of the Yellowstone's mantle plume heat. They're not likely to step aside so that the supereruption can go on without them.

We should expect 6-foot radioactive ash depths 1000 miles downwind from Yellowstone 4. An eruption at Bruno Jarbridge, in SW Idaho, about 10 million years ago -- fueled by the same hot spot that is now under Yellowstone -- buried hundreds of pre-historic animals in 6 feet of ash at present-day Orchard, Nebraska. Orchard is about 1000 miles away from the volcanic source.

(Relocation of the hot spot is no puzzle. The North American Plate moves southwest. The hot spot stays put. The 16- to 17-million-year geologic record of the hot spot's caldera and eruptions shows new caldera forming from southwest to northeast.)

According to the USGS site, a cubic meter of wet ash, stacked on top of another cubic meter of wet ash, could weigh up to 8,800 pounds -- over 4 tons. Deadly weight, for 6 feet of depth. Because it is electrically conductive glass, volcanic ash causes thunderstorms. Volcanic ash almost always falls in a rain. Figure on most of it being wet-weight.

Just the pyroclastic flows near Yellowstone 4 will be capable of killing thousands, tens of thousands, or millions. We've all seen images of the open-mouthed gasps frozen into the Roman corpses at Pompeii, buried in 20 feet of pumice and ash carried by a pyroclastic flow from Vesuvius, August 79 CE.

As with St. Helens, the 79 CE eruption of Vesuvius was just a volcanic hiccup relative to the American supervolcanoes.

The no-worries-pap predictions are for Yellowstone 4's pyroclastic flows to take out a 100 km -- 60-mile -- radius. St. Helens' pyroclastic flows took out a 28-km -- 17.4-mile -- radius. It seems pretty dumb to say that a caldera producing 1000 to 4800 times St. Helens' ejecta will collapse into its own giant, miles-deep hole and blow out pyroclastic flows of less than 4 times those of St. Helens.

Seems prudent to me to expect much larger pyroclastic flows at the end of a Yellowstone supereruption. But then, Area One will be pretty much dead already.

Still, a 60-mile radius is 11,304 square miles (area = pi times radius squared). Pick it up to a 100-mile radius and you've got 31,400 square miles. Either is unimaginable to the kid who once cut corn out of half-mile bean rows for weekend work.

Then there's the volcanic winter. It'll last some years or decades, depending on how big the supereruption is and how long it lasts. The planet, scientists say, will be completely encircled with volcanic clouds within two weeks after a supereruption. All ecosystems will be adversely affected. The Asian monsoons will be disrupted, adding the loss of that world's breadbasket to the loss of the US breadbasket.

The staggering list of killer effects goes on and on. Zero preparation sucks.

-------------------------

See especially:

BBC, Supervolcanoes, first aired 03 February 2000, transcript, at http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/horizon/1999/
supervolcanoes_script.shtml

BBC, Supervolcano: The Truth About Yellowstone Part 1, first aired 14 April 2005, transcript, at http://www.abc.net.au/catalyst/stories/s1343737.htm

BBC, Supervolcano: The Truth About Yellowstone Part 2, first aired 21 April 2005, transcript, at http://www.abc.net.au/catalyst/stories/s1350403.htm

----------------------------

Modified Wed 04 Apr 2007, at 3:45 p.m.

© 2007 by Stephen Neitzke

13 Comments:

At 3/29/2007 12:43 PM, Blogger stev said...

The predictions of Revelations are being made to come true by the Satanic axis of Maurice Strong and his fellow illuminasts. revlu.com/ystone.html
Revelations #8 seems to be a prediction of a super-explosion of Yellowstone, which might encompass one half of North America. Adding to this is the fact that all nuclear energy sites in North America seem to be located over seismic fault-lines. Mr. Strong, who is credited with arranging for North Kopreas nuclear program, is also the World Head of the 'Church of Satan.' Twenty Years ago, he was the Chaiman of Ontario Hydro, Canada.

 
At 5/21/2007 1:25 AM, Blogger Cassandra said...

Stephen, Awesome article. Here is yet another horrifying possibility I didn't even know about! Call me paranoid but I can't help wondering if the neocons have super-eruption on their wish list of "terrorist attack" possibilities (i.e., that suitcase nuke you mentioned). "Creative destruction" of the Old Order, as Michael Ledeen would put it. It makes me uneasy that Halliburton is moving to Dubai and I hear George & Laura have purchased land in South America. (Hey! Where's everybody going?)

You are so right that the billionaires are trying to starve governments while enriching themselves; it's a dual-purpose project. Honest government and the middle class are their greatest enemies---because the latter are educated and have high expectations of decent treatment and a decent life. Billionaires much prefer hardworking, destitute Asians and Latinos, who are so much more cooperative and low-maintenance. Kind of like widgets, easily replaceable and no back-talk.

I wouldn't be surprised if the billionaires rationalize that they are "helping" industrialized nations by weaning them off their harmful addiction to welfare statism. It's time the middle class woke up to who their real enemies are. In the eyes of billionaires, it is WE who are the "useless eaters"---because we expect a good life and aren't enthusiastic about working in their sweat shops. Therefore, what good are we? None---except to pay money for the useless junk emanating from said sweatshops. The poor work hard to make it, and we work hard to buy it. Everybody's working hard to keep the cash rolling in for the billionaires. Something wrong with this system.

See? I'm typical of a middle-class troublemaker, grousing about the way things are. A little dose of "reality" (in the form of monetary crisis and/or natural disaster) will do us good, by weeding out the weak and unproductive. A little creative destruction.

How I miss the days at Truthout's Town Meeting Stephen, where I didn't have to wander all over the internet to find good conversation. I hope you are well. I really enjoyed your snotty rant about the monkeybrain and his goosesteppers!

Keep up the good work!

 
At 5/21/2007 11:41 AM, Blogger Stephen Neitzke said...

cassandra -- Thanks for the good comments. Yes, we lost something valuable when we lost the Truthout Town Meeting. I'll always believe that whoever was responsible for cancelling that community understood exactly how its high-quality texts were unifying people against the superrich and their fascist govt functionaries. Cancellation just ahead of Election 2006 could not have been simple coincidence.

I get the impression, reading between your lines, that you've not spent time with Arron Russo's 2006 film, "America: Freedom To Fascism". If you haven't, please do. It moves the superrich from conspiracy theory to deeply planned political reality.

I've a blurb about Russo's AFTF in my blog's sidebar. The blurb gives a hot link to the free-per-view Google video, as well as hot links to two essays -- one my own and one pointedly knocking down central banking conspiracy theory. The latter was written by Joe Bageant and was published on Counterpunch. I think you'll enjoy both essays.

Whatever comes out of the superrich mouths is a lie, no matter how much it sounds like a rationalization. Greed is its own master.

 
At 10/31/2007 2:24 PM, Blogger mini14 said...

As someone who knows more about volcanoes than you illumnati believing, gun stashing, jew-hating conspiracy theory believing nuts, I think you should be force-fed a few facts about this volcano, as well as several others.

Number 1: These supereruptions only occur once in intervals of hundred of thousands to millions of years (that's right, years, not months, not weeks, not days), and I am one of those millions who live in the "danger zone". Because of the infrequency of these catyclysmic occurances, it ain't worth my time to worry about it. Life is full of risk, so get used to it.

2. To have evacuation drills from this type of eruption would be prohibitively expensive and difficult, even for the big, bad "alimighty" government.

3. A supereruption or a flood basalt would threaten everyone, regardless of wealth or preparation, and a volcanic eruption is something that no mortal man can withstand. If Yellowstone were to go off tomorrow, there would be nothing anyone could do. No mortal man, not me, not you, not the big bad government nor the illumnati can stop a volcanic eruption anymore than anyone can stop the sun from rising in the morning.

4. Volcanic eruptions are very unpredictable. Geoligists at the time of Mount Saint Helens in the early stages were unsure of its chances of eruption, and the only time they could accurately predict was right when it was inevitable that the mountain would blow. Last year, they thought fourpeaked volcano in Alaska would erupt, but it didn't.

5. If a supereruption were to occur tomorrow, all of us, inlcuding the neo-cons would be in deep $%^#. The last thing on our minds would be politics or conspiracy theories, and the super-rich and the politicians would be in that same pot as all of us in that case.

And if you're wondering, moving from the danger zone will not protect you from a supereruption. The effects of one will be global, and you quickly get an idea of what the year without a summer looked like, but the effects would be greater. And besides, there are quite a few supervolcanic calderas that we know of, and there are most likely more that we DO NOT know about.

Get out of your dank bunkers and unfinished basements and experience reality. Life is full of risk, so get used to it. You retards are pathetic.

 
At 10/31/2007 10:47 PM, Blogger Stephen Neitzke said...

mini-14 -- You trolls who hide behind names of firearms are pathetic.

 
At 11/01/2007 1:44 PM, Blogger mini14 said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At 11/01/2007 4:27 PM, Blogger Stephen Neitzke said...

Game over, troll.

 
At 2/24/2009 3:28 AM, Blogger H.T. Feivel said...

Now...I may be wrong but am I the only one who has thought of taking preventative action to STOP it from erupting and turning it all into energy?....

Geothermal power is always useful...
What if we could somehow "pipe" the magma through tunnels in the rock to lighten the MASSIVE pressure that is on the caldera, and with the flowing magma, use it to power geothermal plants?

PLEASE tell me I'm not the only one who thought of this.

Because this seems like it would work, and it would also provide an economic boom to the USA. Congress ought to pass a bill requiring this to happen so millions and millions of citizens don't just simply die.

 
At 4/24/2010 2:46 AM, Blogger Arizona foreclosures said...

See? I'm typical of a middle-class troublemaker, grousing about the way things are. A little dose of "reality" (in the form of monetary crisis and/or natural disaster) will do us good, by weeding out the weak and unproductive. A little creative destruction. Concrete Cutting Los Angeles

 
At 6/15/2010 10:52 PM, Blogger Dublin Mick said...

Hello Stephen
I stumbled into your blog on google. Yellowstone is not totally unrelated to what is happening in the gulf as all of the earth's geology is interrelated per Edgar Cayce.

Henning kemner is of the opinion the gulf is not an oil volcano but a real volcano as it is spewing very little oil and a lot of hydrogen sulfite and iron which is the reason it is reddish in color.

I will be linking the Yellowstone piece.

http://stargazersandgravediggers.blogspot.com/2010/06/what-time-is-it_15.html

http://wwwcampfire.blogspot.com/

We have somewhat of a network you might be interested in also.

http://snippits-and-slappits.blogspot.com/2010/06/great-abyss-entire-continent-burning.html

http://kennysideshow.blogspot.com/

http://smokingmirrors.blogspot.com/2010/06/hammer-of-heaven-and-synagogue-of-satan.html

http://twelfthbough.blogspot.com/

http://floggingdeadhorses.blogspot.com/?zx=f406f9dcbaf855bf

 
At 6/17/2010 1:26 AM, Blogger Noor al Haqiqa said...

I looked into Yellowstone awhile back and started to watch a film about it blowing. Lost the url never finished. To be honest I have been so busy working on the human angle... the wars... the opening eyes... because I believe that wakening the people matters... I just never went back to the volcanoes. I live right on top of the San Andreas and ... have lived with this in the back of my mind for so long... I just forget it.

I have been through the ripping apart of our planet before. So I died? Big deal. I was born again when the time was right. I have been keeping up and educating as best I can with the Deepwater horror and having been a reader of Cayce when I was young, on some level I am ready for everything. I feel no need to fight to live in such a hostile environment. It means little to me if I live or die to be very honest, my only preference being that it be fast.

What will be will be. In his own crude way, that mini character is right. We have all been awed by the power of nature and just how small and helpless one feels in hurricanes or cyclones or blizzards or electric storms or ... any of these things. On some level we know what is ahead more or less.

I plan to check out.

 
At 6/17/2010 1:27 AM, Blogger Noor al Haqiqa said...

I looked into Yellowstone awhile back and started to watch a film about it blowing. Lost the url never finished. To be honest I have been so busy working on the human angle... the wars... the opening eyes... because I believe that wakening the people matters... I just never went back to the volcanoes. I live right on top of the San Andreas and ... have lived with this in the back of my mind for so long... I just forget it.

I have been through the ripping apart of our planet before. So I died? Big deal. I was born again when the time was right. I have been keeping up and educating as best I can with the Deepwater horror and having been a reader of Cayce when I was young, on some level I am ready for everything. I feel no need to fight to live in such a hostile environment. It means little to me if I live or die to be very honest, my only preference being that it be fast.

What will be will be. In his own crude way, that mini character is right. We have all been awed by the power of nature and just how small and helpless one feels in hurricanes or cyclones or blizzards or electric storms or ... any of these things. On some level we know what is ahead more or less.

I plan to check out.

 
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