Apocalyptic megavolcano ‘has a one in six chance of erupting this century’ as scientists warn of ‘global devastation’

All too often we are warned of massive asteroids coming our way and the tremendous effort required to avoid them.

But what many people don’t realize is that there’s already an even greater threat here on the ground.

An underwater volcano devastated Tonga last year

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An underwater volcano devastated Tonga last yearPhoto credit: Getty

And it’s far more likely to happen than an asteroid hitting Earth.

This forgotten menace is nothing more than volcanoes, which experts say don’t get nearly enough attention to prevent widespread death and destruction.

Looking back, those flaming masses have wreaked havoc time and time again.

But the world, according to Dr. Michael Cassidy from the University of Birmingham and Dr. University of Cambridge’s Lara Mani ‘pathetically ill-prepared’

Rare
168 dead after powerful tsunami after Krakatoa eruption in Indonesia

They say the catastrophic risk of a giant eruption is comparable to that of a 1 km wide asteroid collapsing on us.

But the shocking difference is that the probability of a volcanic catastrophe is a hundred times greater than the probability of an asteroid or comet collision combined.

If that’s not alarming enough, scientists predict there’s a one in six chance of a magnitude 7 eruption this century.

If you’re wondering how bad a magnitude 7 is, it’s 10 or 100 times bigger than December’s terrible Tonga eruption.

Tonga should be “a wake-up call”.

Hunga Tonga-Hunga Haʻapai, as the underwater volcano is known, resulted in the deaths of six people, and not all of the victims were on the island itself.

Two victims drowned by a deadly megawave on the beach all the way to Peru.

In Japan and the US, hundreds of thousands have been urged to stay off shores for fear of tsunamis.

Meanwhile, the Pacific islands in close proximity were surrounded by ash, power outages and long communication problems.

It took a full month to repair a vital undersea cable that Tonga needs to make calls and access the internet.

So you can imagine the severe disruption and huge loss of life that an eruption 10 or 100 times larger would cause.

Ash-covered aftermath of an eruption

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Ash-covered aftermath of an eruptionPhoto credits: © Daniele Volpe

Last magnitude 7 eruption killed 100,000 people

You only have to look in the history books to see just how bad a magnitude 7 can be.

“Such gigantic eruptions caused abrupt climate change and the collapse of civilizations in the distant past,” said Dr. mani.

The last occurred in Indonesia in 1815, and it is estimated that around 100,000 people died.

The deadly event caused global temperatures to drop by an average of one degree, making it known as “the year without a summer.”

The crops did not grow properly, famines, violent uprisings and epidemics followed.

“We now live in a world with eight times the population and over forty times the trade,” warned Dr. Cassidy.

“Our complex global networks could make us even more vulnerable to the shock of a large eruption.”

The financial cost of such a catastrophically large magnitude could well be in the trillions today.

More needs to be done now

The experts say the current lack of planning is “reckless”.

They want more detection technology to be sorted out.

“Hundreds of millions of dollars are pumped into asteroid threats each year, but there is a serious lack of global funding and coordination for volcano preparedness,” continued Dr. Mani gone.

“That urgently needs to change.

“We completely underestimate the risk that volcanoes pose to our societies.”

dr Cassidy added: “We may not even know about relatively recent eruptions due to the lack of research on marine and sea cores, particularly in neglected regions like Southeast Asia.

“Volcanoes can be dormant for long periods of time but still be capable of sudden and extraordinary destruction.”

Lava erupts in the Meradalir Valley in Iceland

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Lava erupts in the Meradalir Valley in IcelandPhoto credit: Getty

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https://www.thesun.ie/tech/9305520/apocalyptic-mega-volcano-eruption-one-in-six-chance/ Apocalyptic megavolcano ‘has a one in six chance of erupting this century’ as scientists warn of ‘global devastation’

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