This Canadian Volcano Is Threatening To Erupt, Scientists Say
The volcanic eruption last month in Hawaii made headlines as huge lava flows displaced hundreds of people and levelled neighbourhoods. The island chain is famous for its sublime volcanic activity, but that beauty is also a threat.
But did you know that Canada also has dozens of volcanoes? We think of volcanoes as a tropical phenomenon, but tectonic activity has no climatic limitations. In fact, volcanoes line the Pacific plate fault line along the west coast of Canada.
Most are dormant, but scientists warn that climate change could soon revive them.
Melting glaciers around some volcanoes could displace enough terrain to trigger landslides and even eruptions.
The many volcanoes in British Columbia are especailly worrysome. Mount Meager's volatility is already well-documented. In 2010, volcanic activity cause the largest landslide in Canadian history. Volcanic gases already seep through its icy cliffs.
Right now, the glaciers that surround the volcano seem to cap and secure gasses beneath. Melting ice will likely weaken that seal in the near future, allowing compressed gas to burst through the surface. Displaced rock would only further destabilize the mountain.
One side of the mountain is already marked as "unstable." Climate change will only exacerbate the situation.