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Will there be another VEI level six (or higher) volcanic eruption on Earth before 2025?

The Volcanic Explosivity Index (VEI) is a relative measure of the explosiveness of volcanic eruptions. It was devised by Chris Newhall of the United States Geological Survey and Stephen Self at the University of Hawaii in 1982.

Volume of products, eruption cloud height, and qualitative observations (using terms ranging from "gentle" to "mega-colossal") are used to determine the explosivity value. The scale is open-ended with the largest volcanoes in history given magnitude 8. A value of 0 is given for non-explosive eruptions, defined as less than 10,000 m^3 (350,000 cu ft) of tephra ejected; and 8 representing a mega-colossal explosive eruption that can eject 1.0×1012 m^3 (240 cubic miles) of tephra and have a cloud column height of over 20 km (66,000 ft).

The scale is logarithmic, with each interval on the scale representing a tenfold increase in observed ejecta criteria, with the exception of between VEI 0, VEI 1 and VEI 2.

An eruption rated level six on the VEI would involve ejecta volume of at least 10 km3, a plume height of at least 20 km, and substantial troposhperic and stratospheric injection of material.

Three eruptions ranking level six have occurred since 1900: Santa Maria in 1902, Novarupta in 1912, and Mount Pinatubo in 1991.

The most recent level seven eruption occurred at Mount Tambora in 1815, and the most recent level eight eruption took place about 26,500 years ago.

By 2010, the Global Volcanism Program of the Smithsonian Institution had catalogued the assignment of a VEI for 7,742 volcanic eruptions that occurred during the Holocene (the last 11,700 years) which account for about 75% of the total known eruptions during the Holocene. Of these 7,742 eruptions, about 49% have a VEI of ≤ 2, and 90% have a VEI ≤ 3.

This question asks: Before 1 January 2025, will any eruption rated level six, seven, or eight occur anywhere on Earth?

This question resolves positively if any competent authority on volcanism credibly assesses that an eruption occurring after this question opens but before 1 January 2025 is rated level six, seven or eight on the Volanic Explosivity Index.

In case of major controversy in the scientific community over this assessment, the resolution shall rest upon the VEI level assigned to the event by either the US Geological Survey or the comparable authority of the nation in which the event takes place. In the event that these numbers differ, the higher of the two shall be taken as correct for purposes of resolving this question.


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