Mount Etna volcano eruption


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  • Created by: Ellie
  • Created on: 26-05-12 17:33

Quick Fact

  • Date: 2001/2002
  • Location: Mt Etna, Scicily, Italy. M.E.D.C.
  • Volcano Type: Composite
  • Plate Boundary: Destructive
  • Plate boundary location: Eurasian and African
  • Main settlements: Messina and Catania
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Physical Causes

  • Mount Etna lies on a destructive plate boundary
  • African plate subducts the Eurasian plate.
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Human pressures

Tourism had a big impact due to it being one of the largest industries in the area.

  • Nicolosi and Rifugio are the top two ski resorts. The lava flows swallowed up cabins, houses and snow ploughs. As a result the tourism dropped meaning economic losses and job losses.
  •  Tourism also dropped because the snow was not settling on the flanks of the volcano due to the intense heat.

Another human pressure is the population density of the Mount Etna area. It is the most densely populated areas on the North Eastern coast. 

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Physical effects

  • Damages and loss to tourism and agriculture .
  • vegetation destroyed.
  • Animals killed and habitats destroyed.
  • destruction of roads so difficult to access the area. 
  • Vineyards and orange groves in Zafferano destroyed.
  • Lava wiped out airports resulting in their closure.
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Human Effects

major damage to the economy due to;

  • damaged to tourism
  • loss of farmland, covered by ash
  • loss of vineyards and orange groves
  • loss of airports- Catania runway blocked by ash

All of these factors effect level of exports, therefore loss of income, loss of jobs and loss of produce. There are elements of an L.E.D.C's economy and money should have been spent before on prevention. 

There were some social effects too:

  • Holiday villas destroyed. So again, loss of tourists and economic income
  • People died
  • Towns and villages destroyed; for example Catania
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Response, Prevention and Prediction

  • Rifugio Sapienza, diverted lava flows to keep it under control. 
  • USA army provided external aid. They bought concrete blocks to block the lava flows.
  • Italian government gave £5.6 million of aid.
  • Evacuation was put in place.
  • People prayed
  • Dams wee built
  • Rebuilding of damaged housing 
  • Project on improving their technology in order to allow successful planning, evacuations strategies and improve emergency services.
  • Mt Etna, hugely relies on tourism to generate money. Larger way of making money should be considered. 
  • Italian government allowed tax breaks. 
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