Skip to main content

Natural Hazards

The USGS monitors and conducts research on a wide range of natural hazards to help decision-makers prepare for and respond to hazard events that threaten life and property.

Filter Total Items: 220

Do volcanoes affect weather?

Yes, volcanoes can affect weather and the Earth's climate. Following the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines, cooler than normal temperatures were recorded worldwide and brilliant sunsets and sunrises were attributed to this eruption that sent fine ash and gases high into the stratosphere, forming a large volcanic cloud that drifted around the world. The sulfur dioxide (SO2) in this...

link

Do volcanoes affect weather?

Yes, volcanoes can affect weather and the Earth's climate. Following the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo in the Philippines, cooler than normal temperatures were recorded worldwide and brilliant sunsets and sunrises were attributed to this eruption that sent fine ash and gases high into the stratosphere, forming a large volcanic cloud that drifted around the world. The sulfur dioxide (SO2) in this...

Learn More

How Do Volcanoes Erupt?

Deep within the Earth it is so hot that some rocks slowly melt and become a thick flowing substance called magma. Since it is lighter than the solid rock around it, magma rises and collects in magma chambers. Eventually, some of the magma pushes through vents and fissures to the Earth's surface. Magma that has erupted is called lava.Some volcanic eruptions are explosive and others are not. The...

link

How Do Volcanoes Erupt?

Deep within the Earth it is so hot that some rocks slowly melt and become a thick flowing substance called magma. Since it is lighter than the solid rock around it, magma rises and collects in magma chambers. Eventually, some of the magma pushes through vents and fissures to the Earth's surface. Magma that has erupted is called lava.Some volcanic eruptions are explosive and others are not. The...

Learn More

How many active volcanoes are there on Earth?

There are about 1,350 potentially active volcanoes worldwide, aside from the continuous belts of volcanoes on the ocean floor at spreading centers like the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. About 500 of those 1,350 volcanoes have erupted in historical time. Many of those are located along the Pacific Rim in what is known as the "Ring of Fire." In the United States, volcanoes in the Cascade Range and Alaska...

link

How many active volcanoes are there on Earth?

There are about 1,350 potentially active volcanoes worldwide, aside from the continuous belts of volcanoes on the ocean floor at spreading centers like the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. About 500 of those 1,350 volcanoes have erupted in historical time. Many of those are located along the Pacific Rim in what is known as the "Ring of Fire." In the United States, volcanoes in the Cascade Range and Alaska...

Learn More

What is the relationship between volcanism and the geysers and hot springs in Yellowstone?

Heat and volcanic gases from slowly cooling magma rise and warm the dense salty water that occupies fractured rocks above the Yellowstone magma chamber. That brine, in turn, transfers its heat to overlying fresh groundwater, which is recharged by rainfall and snowmelt from the surface. Water boiling at depth below the surface is hotter than the temperature of boiling at the surface. If it rises...

link

What is the relationship between volcanism and the geysers and hot springs in Yellowstone?

Heat and volcanic gases from slowly cooling magma rise and warm the dense salty water that occupies fractured rocks above the Yellowstone magma chamber. That brine, in turn, transfers its heat to overlying fresh groundwater, which is recharged by rainfall and snowmelt from the surface. Water boiling at depth below the surface is hotter than the temperature of boiling at the surface. If it rises...

Learn More