New Moon, Full Moon: Do Moon Phases Trigger Volcanic Eruptions? Earthquakes?

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General Information

Source:
NBC Nightly News
Creator:
David Brinkley/Robert Bazell
Event Date:
06/13/1980
Air/Publish Date:
06/13/1980
Resource Type:
Video News Report
Copyright:
NBCUniversal Media, LLC.
Copyright Date:
1980
Clip Length:
00:02:00

Description

Geologists have a theory, based on observations: that the new or full phases of the moon may trigger volcanoes and earthquakes, through changes in gravitational pull and "earth tide."

Citation

MLA

"New Moon, Full Moon: Do Moon Phases Trigger Volcanic Eruptions? Earthquakes?" Robert Bazell, correspondent. NBC Nightly News. NBCUniversal Media. 13 June 1980. NBC Learn. Web. 21 January 2015.

APA

Bazell, R. (Reporter), & Brinkley, D. (Anchor). (1980, June 13). New Moon, Full Moon: Do Moon Phases Trigger Volcanic Eruptions? Earthquakes? [Television series episode]. NBC Nightly News. Retrieved from https://archives.nbclearn.com/portal/site/k-12/browse/?cuecard=5804

CHICAGO MANUAL OF STYLE

"New Moon, Full Moon: Do Moon Phases Trigger Volcanic Eruptions? Earthquakes?" NBC Nightly News, New York, NY: NBC Universal, 06/13/1980. Accessed Wed Jan 21 2015 from NBC Learn: https://archives.nbclearn.com/portal/site/k-12/browse/?cuecard=5804

Transcript

New Moon, Full Moon: Do Moon Phases Trigger Volcanic Eruptions? Earthquakes?

DAVID BRINKLEY, anchor:

There’s a theory, not proven though there is some evidence, that the phase of the moon has some effect on volcanoes and perhaps on earthquakes, too. If this is true, and nobody is certain, it appears the likeliest time for an eruption is the appearance of the new moon. Here’s our science correspondent, Robert Bazell.

ROBERT BAZELL, reporting:

May 18th, when Mt. St. Helens first exploded was 4 days past a new moon. May 25th when it erupted again was 4 days before the full moon and this morning’s eruption occurred on the day of a new moon. Geologists believe there is a connection between phases of the moon and volcanic eruptions. When the moon is full and lined up with the Sun behind the Earth or when it is new and between the Earth and the Sun, the gravitational pull, called the Earth tide, is strongest and this, the scientists say, could set off a volcano.

Dr. KLAUS JACOB (Columbia University): If it is ready to erupt, then it could trigger the eruption. I hesitate to say it will cause it, but the tidal force is very likely to play an important role as to the exact time when a major eruption may occur.

BAZELL: And there may be a connection with earthquakes. In the last few weeks, there has been intense earthquake activity along the faults in California and many geologists suspect there is a connection, in some way, to the volcanic eruption. Historically, one of the biggest earthquakes in California, along a 150 mile stretch of the San Andreas Fault, occurred in 1857 when Mt. St. Helens was last active.

Dr. JACOB: It is not impossible that a connection may exist. As a matter of fact, we suspect that, but we cannot prove it at this time.

BAZELL: Studies are yielding new and useful information, but the scientists say they are still a long way from being able to make accurate predictions. Robert Bazell, NBC News, New York.