Super Volcanoes or, something even scarier than Brexit?!

The York and District Branch of the GA hosted the renowned Geophysicist Bill McGuire, Emeritus Professor at UCL, to talk about the threat of Super Volcanoes using the 1815 Tambora eruption as an example of the global fall-out of such an event.  Many people have heard of the effects of ash on the sunsets in Europe following the eruption of Krakatoa in 1886 but few know about the more worrying impact of sulphur dioxide aerosol in the atmosphere.  After Tambora this caused huge climatic disruption, famine in Europe and social unrest as food prices soared and crops failed.

A bleak picture indeed and one that is almost certain to happen at some time, the Super Volcanoes to watch at the moment both reside in South America with Laguna del Maule in Chile inflating with magma at a worrying rate of 6 cm a year. The audience, which was over 100 strong, was treated to an whirlwind tour of the Super Volcano threat and it certainly took our minds off other worries, as Bill pointed out our reactive, rather than proactive, politicians are definitely putting their heads in the sand about this inevitable risk.

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