Portents O’ Doom

It’s only Monday, and we already have a winner in this week’s best letter to the editor of the PDN.

Paul Zerzan, local teacher and dedicated letter writer, writes in to warn everybody about the imminent disaster of the Anatahan volcano some 200 miles to the north. He predicts a massive explosion on Anatahan, akin to the cataclysmic eruption of Krakatoa in the 19th century, sometime this year. The resulting havoc will decimate the island of Guam with killer tsunami over 100 feet tall.

That would be a hell of disaster. I’m glad I live on high ground.

6 thoughts on “Portents O’ Doom

  1. Merm

    Omigod! Is there any truth to what he is saying? Have other seismologists or volcanologists studied this volcano?

  2. Merm

    Okay, my next question is did the PDN just post this letter with nothing else to prevent panic in the people who are now living on Guam? What kind of irresponsible journalism is that?! They should have done some research to allay fears about this. My gosh. I did my own research and came up with this from the CNMI government website http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/cnmi

    “An unlikely scenario is a massive explosive eruption (VEI 6 or higher) that forms an even larger caldera than currently exists (for example, the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines) or a large landslide (for example, the 1980 landslide at Mount St. Helens, USA). This activity would represent a major threat to aviation in case of a massive explosive eruption, and tsunami generation in either case with effects likely to be felt throughout the Mariana Islands. WE EMPHASIZE THE UNLIKELY NATURE OF SUCH EVENTS.” [my use of capitalization for effect–Merm]

  3. Thomas

    Relax, relax. Paul Zerzan is not a seismologist, volcanologist, or geologist. He’s a teacher here on Guam, and based on the number of letters he submits to the PDN it’s fair to say he is something of a crank.

    There is a remote possibility that Anatahan will cataclysmically erupt and generate tremendous tsunami and ash fall. There is also a remote possibility that a meteor will strik the Pacific Ocean and generate a collosal tsunami. Am I worried about either scenario? Not very much. I’m more concerned about rising oil prices and political instability in East Asia.

  4. Merm

    Well, I can only hope that we have a better tsunami warning system on Guam than they did in Indonesia….just in case.

  5. Anonymous

    mr. zerzan is an unstable freak. i’ve met him on two occassions in formal academic meetings. he broke down in violent verbal anger both times. now don’t get me wrong, i like “freaks”, but i don’t do UNstable “freaks” very well.

    enjoy the anatahan process, it will be memorable for all in close proximity. the only eruption going on there is out of UNstable Freak’s head. enjoy that one, too.

    wes

  6. paul zerzan

    Well, Anonymous, I may be an “unstable freak” but at least I have the courage to use my own name when I express my opinion.

    All the information I have on Anatahan is information off the net.

    The reference to a “krakatoa-type event” is from a statement by a University of Texas Professor who studied Anatahan in 2003 (I mentioned him in my letter to the PDN. You can read his article on the internet).

    My guess as to the probability of a cataclysmic-type explosion on Anatahan may be way too high.

    I really hope I am way off and dead-wrong on the matter.

    But does anyone know?

    Anatahan was thought to be extinct until it blew in 2003, so nobody really knows much about this volcano (except that it is felsic and of the explosive type).

    In any case I am trying to initiate public awareness and discussion as to the nature of this volcano and its potential impact on Guam.

    I think that is a more interesting and important topic than a discussion of my personal imperfections or volcanic temper.

    Paul A. Zerzan

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