The rapid eruption of the Agung volcano in Bali will lower the average annual temperature on Earth by about 0.2 degrees Celsius in the next five years and temporarily slow down, but will not stop global warming, writes Zeke Hausfather, an American climatologist at the University of California at Berkeley.
“It should be borne in mind that these forecasts are based on the assumption that the El Niño phenomenon will be in a” neutral “state.If El Niño is in the” negative “phase, La Niña, then the temperatures will drop by 0.4 degrees, and if it is in the “positive” phase, then the traces of cooling will be almost invisible, “- said the scientist.
Volcanoes of the Earth today are considered one of the key “conductors” of the climate of our planet. They can both raise the temperature on its surface, throwing huge masses of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases and lower it, filling the Earth’s atmosphere with ash particles and aerosol microdroplets, reflecting the rays and heat of the Sun.
Mankind has already experienced several such catastrophes in the short history of its existence. For example, the eruption of the Toba supervolcan, which occurred approximately 70,000 years ago, led to the onset of a “volcanic winter” for several years and the almost complete disappearance of people. Its smaller counterparts, the explosion of the island of Tambor in 1815 and the massive eruption of volcanoes in South America in 530 AD, caused massive famine and outbreaks of plague.
Volcano Agung is one of the largest layered volcanoes in the tropical part of Asia, and it is known to scientists for its infrequent, but very powerful eruptions. The last time Agung “woke up” in 1963, and his eruption led to the death of about a thousand inhabitants of the island, as well as a series of sudden climate change.
In September of this year, seismologists recorded a series of earthquakes in the vicinity of the volcano, which became the first serious evidence that he began to wake up, and that his new eruption could occur in the coming months and years. This led to the evacuation of approximately 100,000 people living on the slopes of Agunga, and prompted scientists to begin new projections on the consequences of its eruption.
According to Hausfather, based on the data on the past cataclysm in Bali, this eruption will lead to a significant slowdown in global warming in 2018-2023, if other climatic factors favor this.
If Agung’s eruption is stronger, then the consequences from this will be more noticeable, but the duration of this “global cooling”, according to the climatologist, will be about the same, since the aerosols thrown by the volcano will settle on the ground in about the same time. With a more modest eruption scale, its climatic consequences will be minimal, and the current course of global warming will not change.
In general, if the eruption occurs in 2018 and will be similar to the previous episode of Agung’s awakening, then global warming will be temporarily “discarded” by about four years. In other words, the average temperatures next year will be equivalent to those that dominated the Earth in 2014. In 2023, this effect will disappear, and global warming will resume its previous course.