The largest active geyser in the world, known as the Steamboat Geyser, has erupted three times in the last six weeks at Yellowstone National Park. Geologists believe that under Wyoming, there’s a volcanic eruption on the way, and it could be destructive.
The last three eruptions happened on 15 March, 19 April and on 27 April. The last time it erupted three times in just a year it was in 2003. And the last eruption before these three in a row happened in September 2014.
It’s Not Going to Happen Any Soon
However, Michael Poland, the scientist at the U.S. Geological Survey’s Yellowstone Volcano Observatory said that “there is nothing to indicate that any sort of volcanic eruption is imminent.”
Jake Lowenstern, a USGS research geologist, and volcano expert, also tries to calm down everyone, saying that: “Yellowstone hasn’t had a volcanic eruption for 70,000 years! Geysers erupt all the time.”
Most geysers don’t erupt on a schedule, so they’re just random. They can have huge eruptions that happen once in a while or smaller and frequent ones.
These last three eruptions could be due to a thermal disturbance in the basin of the geyser.
Another geyser that can cause have large eruptions is the Waimangu Geyser in New Zealand, but the last time it rocketed higher than Steamboat, it was over 100 ago, according to the U.S. National Park Service.
An Amazing Place to Visit
Yellowstone is placed on top of a vast volcano crater, hosting a diverse and expansive hydrothermal system. It has multicolored springs, mud pots and geysers, making Yellowstone National Park an amazing place to visit.
Eruptions of geysers are completely usual and there is nothing to worry about yet. What should worry us is when the hydrothermal systems get completely dry and there is no more eruption from the geysers. That would mean that the hot magma underneath is making its way up, and starts destroying the whole Park.
Andre Blair s is the lead editor for Advocator.ca. He holds a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Toronto, and a Master of Science in Public Health (M.S.P.H.) from the School of Public Health, Department of Health Administration, at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Andre specializes in environmental health, but writes on a variety of issues.