Growing up, I was always told that the volcanoes we live around were mostly safe and dormant. Now a new study has revealed that they are much more alive and dangerous then anyone thought.

Scientists have found an enormous "lava chamber engine" that flows under all 3 of the Northwests most dangerous volcanoes: Mt Rainier, Mt. St Helens, & Mt Adams. The lava chamber is said to be twice the volume of magma then was thought to exist in all 3 volcanoes combined, at least 12,800 cubic kilometers according to the study. This huge lava chamber is much closer in structure to the huge chamber that fuels Yellowstone National Park.

This discovery raises multiple questions that need to now be answered. Is this lava chamber what causes the volcanic eruptions? Where is the lava coming from? Is it a magma chamber or part of a magma plume? Understanding some of these questions will help scientists access the new found risk that the residents of the Northwest face. This discovery does not make these famous volcanoes more dangerous, they are just more dangerous then we thought.