The most devastating volcanic eruptions in history – 24/7 Wall St.
Each year, more than 50 volcanoes on average erupt around the world. For example, the Cumbre Vieja volcano in La Palma, one of the Spanish Canary Islands off the coast of Morocco, is currently erupting and has so far destroyed 500 buildings and caused the evacuation of two villages.
Many eruptions are minor, but sometimes a historic explosion causes considerable damage. Pyroclastic flows – a rapid flow of hot ash, lava, and gas – and mudslides can bury farms, towns and forests miles around a volcano. Tsunamis, triggered by avalanches of debris pouring into the ocean, can destroy coastal settlements, destroy vessels and damage fisheries.
And volcanic eruptions can wreak havoc not only in the area directly around the explosion, but around the world. The ash clouds that enter the stratosphere during an eruption are known to cause climate change that sometimes lasts for years and has been implicated in devastating famines throughout history. Some are even credited with putting an end to ancient civilizations and empires. (Here are 25 ancient civilizations destroyed by natural disasters.)
24/7 Wall St. has compiled a list of the most devastating volcanic eruptions in history, using data from the US Geological Survey and other sources. Many of them have caused millions of dollars in damage, as well as loss of life and homes, as people are forced to relocate to unaffected areas. The eruptions were chosen for the list based on the extent of property damage and fatalities they cause, their impact on the environment, and their strength.
Click here to see the most devastating volcanic eruptions in history
The strength of eruptions is measured on a scale called the Volcanic Explosive Index (VEI), which takes into account the amount of material ejected from the volcano, as well as the height at which it is ejected into the atmosphere and the duration of the eruption. . The highest VEI on record is a 7, which is 10 times more powerful than a VEI of 6. Most of the eruptions on the list are rated 6 or 7, making it one of the biggest natural disasters in the world. the story. (Here is the worst natural disaster in any state.)