RSGS - VolcanoesSome Facts and Figures

  • More than 80% of the Earth’s surface was created by volcanic action.
  • Most of the 550 active volcanoes are found along the edges of the Earth’s tectonic plates.
  • More than half of these encircle the Pacific Ocean in the so-called ‘Ring of Fire’.
  • Indonesia is the country with the most volcanoes.
  • The biggest active volcano in the world is Mauna Loa in Hawaii.
  • CO2 emissions from volcanoes on land average about 100th of human CO2
  • Volcanoes are not always mountain-shaped. Some volcanoes form depressions in the Earth because the loss of magma causes the Earth to sag.
  • It is estimated that about 60 volcanoes erupt every year around the world. The majority of these are very weak.
  • The red hot pyroclastic flows can reach speeds of 700km per hour.