Yellowstone Supervolcano Unknown by Nearly Two-Thirds of Adult Americans, Says New Survey

Mar 21, 2005, 00:00 ET from Discovery Channel

    SILVER SPRING, Md., March 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Results from an online survey
 conducted for Discovery Channel by Harris Interactive(R) reveal that only 22%
 of adults in America are aware of the term "supervolcano."  Supervolcano is a
 term used to describe a volcano containing a large caldera able to produce an
 exceedingly large, catastrophic explosive eruption, in some cases over 100
 times bigger than anything experienced by humanity over historic time.  In
 scientific terms, a supervolcano implies a volcanic eruption of a magnitude of
 8 on the Volcano Explosivity Index, meaning that more than 1,000 cubic
 kilometers of magma are erupted.  When told that Yellowstone National Park,
 the home of "Old Faithful," is one of the few known examples of a
 supervolcano, 64 percent of adults surveyed said that they were unaware of
 that fact.
     Discovery Channel presents an opportunity for viewers to explore the
 Yellowstone supervolcano and witness for the first time a fact-based dramatic
 portrayal of what could happen if it erupted in SUPERVOLCANO, a two-hour
 docudrama premiering April 10, 8:00 - 10:00 PM (ET/PT).  Immediately following
 the docudrama, Tom Brokaw hosts a one-hour scientific epilogue to explore the
 science behind a supervolcano, talk to the world's leading experts on
 supervolcanoes and present research and evidence surrounding the possibilities
 and effects of a super-eruption.  Set in the near future, SUPERVOLCANO uses
 evidence from several previous eruptions at Yellowstone, as well as research
 from major scientific bodies, including the U.S. Geological Survey and the
 Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, to tell the story of what could happen.  To
 create the docudrama, over 40 leading experts in volcanology, geology,
 climatology, archaeology, geography, medicine, emergency contingency, defense,
 agriculture and economics were consulted.
     Upon hearing that scientists have determined that the history of the
 Yellowstone supervolcano suggests it explodes regularly, approximately every
 600,000 years, and that Yellowstone National Park was formed by the last
 explosion, which was 640,000 years ago -- making it now, by these measures,
 overdue -- 81 percent of adult Americans said they were not aware that this
 type of eruption underneath Yellowstone is likely to happen again.  To-date,
 evidence points to three super-volcanic eruptions blasting through
 Yellowstone: 2.1 million years ago, 1.3 million years ago, and 640,000 years
 ago.  The force of a single super-eruption at Yellowstone would be the
 equivalent of 1,000 Hiroshima bombs exploding every second.  The fallout
 effects are massive, including blizzards of ash, ozone depletion, dropping
 temperatures, and mudflows.
     Harris Interactive conducted the telephone survey among 1,013 adults 18
 years of age and older.  Figures were weighted demographically and the margin
 of error was +/- 3 percentage points.  Additional details are available upon
 request.
 
     About Discovery Channel
     Discovery Channel is the United States' largest cable television network,
 serving 89.6 million households across the nation with the finest in
 informative entertainment.  Discovery Networks, U.S., a unit of Discovery
 Communications, Inc., operates and manages Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal
 Planet, Travel Channel, Discovery Health Channel, Discovery HD Theater,
 Discovery Kids Channel, Discovery Times Channel, The Science Channel,
 Discovery Home Channel, Military Channel, Discovery en Espanol and FitTV.  The
 unit also distributes BBC AMERICA.
 
     About Harris Interactive(R)
     Harris Interactive Inc. (http://www.harrisinteractive.com), the 15th
 largest and fastest-growing market research firm in the world, is a Rochester,
 N.Y.-based global research company that blends premier strategic consulting
 with innovative and efficient methods of investigation, analysis and
 application.  Known for The Harris Poll(R) and for pioneering Internet-based
 research methods, Harris Interactive conducts proprietary and public research
 to help its clients achieve clear, material and enduring results.  Harris
 Interactive combines its intellectual capital, databases and technology to
 advance market leadership through U.S. offices and wholly owned subsidiaries:
 London-based HI Europe (http://www.hieurope.com), Paris-based Novatris
 (http://www.novatris.com), Tokyo-based Harris Interactive Japan, through newly
 acquired WirthlinWorldwide, a Reston, Virginia-based research and consultancy
 firm ranked 25th largest in the world, and through an independent global
 network of affiliate market research companies.
 
 

SOURCE Discovery Channel
    SILVER SPRING, Md., March 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Results from an online survey
 conducted for Discovery Channel by Harris Interactive(R) reveal that only 22%
 of adults in America are aware of the term "supervolcano."  Supervolcano is a
 term used to describe a volcano containing a large caldera able to produce an
 exceedingly large, catastrophic explosive eruption, in some cases over 100
 times bigger than anything experienced by humanity over historic time.  In
 scientific terms, a supervolcano implies a volcanic eruption of a magnitude of
 8 on the Volcano Explosivity Index, meaning that more than 1,000 cubic
 kilometers of magma are erupted.  When told that Yellowstone National Park,
 the home of "Old Faithful," is one of the few known examples of a
 supervolcano, 64 percent of adults surveyed said that they were unaware of
 that fact.
     Discovery Channel presents an opportunity for viewers to explore the
 Yellowstone supervolcano and witness for the first time a fact-based dramatic
 portrayal of what could happen if it erupted in SUPERVOLCANO, a two-hour
 docudrama premiering April 10, 8:00 - 10:00 PM (ET/PT).  Immediately following
 the docudrama, Tom Brokaw hosts a one-hour scientific epilogue to explore the
 science behind a supervolcano, talk to the world's leading experts on
 supervolcanoes and present research and evidence surrounding the possibilities
 and effects of a super-eruption.  Set in the near future, SUPERVOLCANO uses
 evidence from several previous eruptions at Yellowstone, as well as research
 from major scientific bodies, including the U.S. Geological Survey and the
 Yellowstone Volcano Observatory, to tell the story of what could happen.  To
 create the docudrama, over 40 leading experts in volcanology, geology,
 climatology, archaeology, geography, medicine, emergency contingency, defense,
 agriculture and economics were consulted.
     Upon hearing that scientists have determined that the history of the
 Yellowstone supervolcano suggests it explodes regularly, approximately every
 600,000 years, and that Yellowstone National Park was formed by the last
 explosion, which was 640,000 years ago -- making it now, by these measures,
 overdue -- 81 percent of adult Americans said they were not aware that this
 type of eruption underneath Yellowstone is likely to happen again.  To-date,
 evidence points to three super-volcanic eruptions blasting through
 Yellowstone: 2.1 million years ago, 1.3 million years ago, and 640,000 years
 ago.  The force of a single super-eruption at Yellowstone would be the
 equivalent of 1,000 Hiroshima bombs exploding every second.  The fallout
 effects are massive, including blizzards of ash, ozone depletion, dropping
 temperatures, and mudflows.
     Harris Interactive conducted the telephone survey among 1,013 adults 18
 years of age and older.  Figures were weighted demographically and the margin
 of error was +/- 3 percentage points.  Additional details are available upon
 request.
 
     About Discovery Channel
     Discovery Channel is the United States' largest cable television network,
 serving 89.6 million households across the nation with the finest in
 informative entertainment.  Discovery Networks, U.S., a unit of Discovery
 Communications, Inc., operates and manages Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal
 Planet, Travel Channel, Discovery Health Channel, Discovery HD Theater,
 Discovery Kids Channel, Discovery Times Channel, The Science Channel,
 Discovery Home Channel, Military Channel, Discovery en Espanol and FitTV.  The
 unit also distributes BBC AMERICA.
 
     About Harris Interactive(R)
     Harris Interactive Inc. (http://www.harrisinteractive.com), the 15th
 largest and fastest-growing market research firm in the world, is a Rochester,
 N.Y.-based global research company that blends premier strategic consulting
 with innovative and efficient methods of investigation, analysis and
 application.  Known for The Harris Poll(R) and for pioneering Internet-based
 research methods, Harris Interactive conducts proprietary and public research
 to help its clients achieve clear, material and enduring results.  Harris
 Interactive combines its intellectual capital, databases and technology to
 advance market leadership through U.S. offices and wholly owned subsidiaries:
 London-based HI Europe (http://www.hieurope.com), Paris-based Novatris
 (http://www.novatris.com), Tokyo-based Harris Interactive Japan, through newly
 acquired WirthlinWorldwide, a Reston, Virginia-based research and consultancy
 firm ranked 25th largest in the world, and through an independent global
 network of affiliate market research companies.
 
 SOURCE  Discovery Channel