Yellowstone Sees Earthquakes Increase In 2021
If you live in Wyoming, no doubt you are familiar with the myths of our supervolcano, AKA the Yellowstone Caldera. The standing rumor is that if the supervolcano ever decides to blow, the whole world would feel the repercussions. And, that rumor is relatively true, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS). So, it stands to reason that whenever Yellowstone's Caldera gets active, we (meaning Wyoming and the rest of the world,) start paying attention.
Well, I have news for you - Yellowstone was very busy in 2021. And I'm not just referring to the swarms of tourists that hit up the park during the outdoor craze of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Yellowstone Volcano Observatory (YVO) reports that America's first National Park has seen an increase in volcanic activity in 2021 when compared to 2019 and 2020.
The report by the USGS monitored Steamboat Geyser and found that its continued pattern of eruptions reduced from 48 eruptions to about 20 eruptions in 2021 - not alarming at all. But the overall number of earthquakes radiating from Yellowstone increased from 1,722 to 2,773 in 2021. The total number of 2,773 was higher than the usual average of 1,500 to 2,500 the USGS expects a year. Of those earthquakes, only four were felt by humans, with the largest being a 3.6 earthquake in July. For reference, the Richter Scale measures earthquakes from 1 (mild) to 9 (extreme).
The good news is that the USGS says that Yellowstone's in a "normal" state of seismic activity. Perhaps the Caldera is just feeling a little active lately. So, there's no need to worry about Wyoming's own supervolcano going ballistic. Besides, the USGS says that it's highly unlikely any massive eruptions occur in the next 1,000 years or so.