Volcanoes are among the most amazing natural events on earth. They play a large part in Awakening of the Beast, the sequel in the Beast series. To make volcanoes come alive, I’ve put together a photo essay on volcanic eruptions. Double-click the pictures to expand them.
Volcanic lakes can be very dangerous, especially when there is volcanic activity. “Nature” posted an article online that discusses the hazards with a focus on Lake Kivu in Africa.
In late 2001, Mount Nyiragongo in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) was growing restless. Plumes of smoke issued from the central crater, alarming volcanologists in the nearby city of Goma. Then, on 17 January 2002, lava fountained from a fracture on Nyiragongo’s southern flank. The molten rock snaked down the sides of the volcano and razed the centre of Goma… the lava streamed into nearby Lake Kivu, generating a plume of water vapour that clouded the area for days1.
More than 100 people were killed and nearly 300,000 people fled their homes. The only obvious refuge for the displaced people was along the shores of the lake. But Kivu poses its own threats. Beneath its placid surface, the lake contains 300 cubic kilometres of carbon dioxide and 60 cubic kilometres of methane. A disruption to the lake — such as a bigger, closer eruption — could cause a gas burst, with potentially deadly consequences for the roughly 2 million people who live along Kivu’s shores… Continue reading