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Title: Reckoning with the Rocky Relationship Between Eruption Size and Climate Response: Toward a Volcano-Climate Index
Volcanic eruptions impact climate, subtly and profoundly. The size of an eruption is only loosely correlated with the severity of its climate effects, which can include changes in surface temperature, ozone levels, stratospheric dynamics, precipitation, and ocean circulation. We review the processes—in magma chambers, eruption columns, and the oceans, biosphere, and atmosphere—that mediate the climate response to an eruption. A complex relationship between eruption size, style, duration, and the subsequent severity of the climate response emerges. We advocate for a new, consistent metric, the Volcano-Climate Index, to categorize climate response to eruptions independent of eruption properties and spanning the full range of volcanic activity, from brief explosive eruptions to long-lasting flood basalts. A consistent metric for categorizing the climate response to eruptions that differ in size, style, and duration is critical for establishing the relationshipbetween the severity and the frequency of such responses aiding hazard assessments, and furthering understanding of volcanic impacts on climate on timescales of years to millions of years. ▪ We review the processes driving the rocky relationship between eruption size and climate response and propose a Volcano-Climate Index. ▪ Volcanic eruptions perturb Earth's climate on a range of timescales, with key open questions regarding how processes in the magmatic system, eruption column, and atmosphere shape the climate response to volcanism. ▪ A Volcano-Climate Index will provide information on the volcano-climate severity-frequency distribution, analogous to earthquake hazards. ▪ Understanding of the frequency of specific levels of volcanic climate effects will aid hazard assessments, planning, and mitigation of societal impacts.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
2221896 2015322
Author(s) / Creator(s):
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Annual Review of Earth and Planetary Sciences
Page Range / eLocation ID:
627 to 661
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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