(ORDO NEWS) — If you think about it, humanity is constantly on the verge of extinction. At any moment in time, an asteroid can fall on us, because scientists discover some of them too late.
In addition to this, people can be killed by a sudden earthquake, tsunami, hurricane and, of course, a volcanic eruption.
According to scientists, today there are about 900 active volcanoes in the world, and we are talking only about those that are on land – no one can say for sure how many of them there are under water.
Approximately 75 thousand years ago, humanity was already on the verge of extinction due to the eruption of the Toba volcano.
After this catastrophe, it became so difficult to live on Earth that a bottleneck effect arose, as a result of which the population of our planet was reduced to 10 thousand (!) People. Let’s find out
The eruption of the Toba volcano in the view of the artist
Features of Toba Volcano
The Toba supervolcano is located in the north-central part of the Indonesian island of Sumatra. It is a caldera with an area of 1775 square kilometers – in fact, it is a huge basin with steep walls and a relatively flat bottom. It is noteworthy that at the bottom there is a lake of the same name, which is considered the largest on the island.
Toba volcano area and lake of the same name
Toba volcano eruption
Like all supervolcanoes, the Indonesian Toba is quite capable of causing dramatic climate change on Earth. Once he has already proved his power – according to the results of research, he erupted about 75 thousand years ago and provoked the death of a huge number of people and animals.
At the time of its eruption on our planet, it was already difficult to live, because we are talking about the ice age. So, after the eruption of Toba, the planet became even colder.
The beauty of Sumatra
Climate change was due to the fact that more than 2,800 square kilometers of magma were thrown into the sky during a volcanic eruption.
Due to the formation of a layer of volcanic ash in the atmosphere of the planet, sunlight almost did not touch the surface and it became very cold all over the world – volcanic winter came. It is believed that the average air temperature dropped from 1 to 15 degrees Celsius for several years and even decades.
Volcanic winter sets in after Toba caldera eruption
Scientists are inclined to assume that due to climate change 75 thousand years ago, not only the inhabitants of European lands, but also the inhabitants of warm Africa suffered.
According to some reports, from the African population of people, about 10,000 people survived the volcanic winter.
However, some scientists do not agree with this assumption, because according to their calculations, after the eruption of the Toba volcano, the average temperature in Africa decreased by only 1.5 degrees Celsius.
If so, then there should have been more survivors. But be that as it may, the fact is that the eruption of the Toba volcano almost killed all of humanity.
The risk of a supervolcano eruption in the future
The question arises – can such a catastrophe happen again? There is practically no doubt that an event dangerous for humanity can be repeated. After all, there are about 20 supervolcanoes in the world, the eruption of which can easily cause a volcanic winter.
The greatest danger today is the Yellowstone Caldera, which is located in the northwestern part of Wyoming. According to scientists, the eruption of the Yellowstone volcano will have the same consequences as in the case of the Toba volcano.
The second most dangerous supervolcano is the Long Valley Caldera, located in eastern California. The last eruption of this volcano occurred about 760 thousand years ago.
At the same time, approximately 750 square kilometers of volcanic ash fell into the atmosphere – less than during the eruption of the Toba volcano, but the consequences were also serious.
For several decades, activity has been observed on the territory of the Long Valley supervolcano, so there is always a risk of a second eruption.
Vicinity of Long Valley Caldera
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