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  Weekly Feature (April 22, 2007)

Our Earth


On Friday, April 20th I attended a geography/geology workshop for teachers, and once again I was in awe of our amazing earth. We studied minerals (not the ones we eat in our vitamins), rocks, fossils, earthquakes, and volcanoes. We participated in activities to show seismic waves from earthquakes using ourselves along with really long slinkies.

In the Lower Mainland we often talk about being prepared for earthquakes, but are you prepared for a volcanic eruption? Mount Baker is known as the sleeping giant. It is an active volcano that last erupted in the 1800s. However, in the late 1970s it released gases and hot fluids to remind us it is still active.

If Mount Baker erupted, the hazards of greatest concern would be landslides, lahars (mud flows), and the filling of river valleys with sediment. The melting of the glaciers on Mount Baker would cause massive flooding in the Fraser Valley. Depending on the time of year and the direction of the wind, we could also be covered in volcanic ash.

The next time you are driving east on a sunny day, admire Mount Baker and remember it is an active volcano!


Pictures of Mount Baker

Information on the volcano Mount Baker



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