Exploding lakes are a terrible natural phenomena and very serious environmental problem.
These lakes are capable of killing thousands, even millions of people and animals living in the region.
In 1986 an awful tragedy occurred when Lake Nyos, in the volcanic region of Cameroon, suddenly
released a cloud of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, killing 1,700 people and 3,500 livestock in nearby towns and villages.
Scientists were at the time not aware of the exploding lake phenomenon although the first event happened
in 1984, when 37 people near Lake Monoun died suddenly.
Lake Nyos is an active crater lake that formed by an eruption about 5 centuries ago.
Nyos is located about 95 km from Lake Monoum. Together these two are the only two volcanic lakes in the world
other than Lake Kivu that contain large amounts of CO2.
After many years of study the science community has come to an agreement that the origin of CO2 within Lake Nyos is due to CO2 that rises from
This CO2 is then dissolved into groundwaters and transferred to the lake resulting in the slow saturation of the hypolimnion.
Cameroon's exploding lakes are a unique example of this phenomenon, where CO2 is trapped in the bottom water of deep volcanic craters.
The gas stays at the bottom of the lake, held down by the pressure of the overlying water.
But eventually, CO2 gas can start to bubble up to the top of the lake, which reduces the water pressure that usually holds the gas down.
When this happens, the gas from the bottom of the lake can vent with exploding force, creating a suffocating cloud that can kill people and
animals in low-lying areas.
In order to prevent Lake Nyos from exploding again, an international team of scientists and engineers has developed and implemented a program to
artificially remove gas from the lake through piping.
USGS scientists initially advised on the project and have long monitored gas levels in the lake to determine whether this removal has been successful.
They'll also update devices monitoring gas levels in nearby Lake Monoun, another exploding lake, where CO2 has now been completely removed as
part of the same project.
Lake Nyos was responsible for the death of 1,700 people and 3,500 livestock.
In 2001, a French engineering firm installed pipes that reached the very bottom of the lakes. Pumps initially push some of the
lower water upward, releasing water pressure and allowing CO2 gas bubbles to form. Once bubbles form, the gas naturally flows up
and out of the pipe at a controlled rate.
This technique has successfully resulted in the complete degassing of Cameroon's Lake Monoun, which now poses no risk of gas
release. Much of the gas in Lake Nyos has been removed as well, but degassing will continue for several more years before the CO2 is completely gone.
The USGS continues to monitor water conditions at these two lakes. The probes that measure the dissolved gas pressure are built at
USGS, and are permanently installed in the lakes. After a decade of use, the most recent probes now need to be replaced.
Unfortunately, this problem is not yet solved. According to recent reports, the lake now contains twice as much carbon dioxide as
was released during the explosion. Earlier attempts to siphon off the gas had to be abandoned for financial reasons.
If Lake Kivu were to explode, over two million people and thousands of animals who live around it would be in danger.
Can we really say we lack financial resources to prevent these defenseless living beings from a possible horrifying death?
Huge Active Fault Found Directly Under Mount Fuji
It Can Trigger Strong Earthquake
Acccording to recent survey, a huge active fault was found under Mount Fuji, standing at 3,776 meters (12,385 feet) above sea level.
The fault, about 30 kilometers long, extends from just beneath the surface to a depth of about 5 km.
Mount Fuji, the highest and the nearly perfectly shaped peak in Japan, has been worshipped as a sacred mountain.
Unusual Natural Phenomena
Earth is a fantastic and beautiful planet full of wonders.
No matter where we decide to go there is always something amazing to admire in all corners of the world, from the East to
the West, from the South to the North, our planet offers a mixture of amazingly mysterious experiences which can occasionally even be somewhat dangerous.
Dangerous Fast and Furious - Birth Of Africa's New Ocean - with video
The only places where mid-ocean ridges appear above sea level are Ethiopia and Iceland.
Two new studies into the so-called “plumbing systems” that lie under volcanoes could bring scientists closer to predicting large
eruptions and reveal new information about where magma is stored and how it moves through the geological plumbing network.
Volcanic Super-Eruptions Could End Civilizations
Enormous volcanic eruptions with potential to end civilizations may have surprisingly short fuses, researchers have discovered.
These eruptions are known as super-eruptions because they are more than 100 times the size of ordinary volcanic eruptions like Mount St. Helens.
Most Dangerous Volcanoes In The World!
Volcanoes are unpredictable, deadly and fascinating.
They can be dormant for even many centuries, so people visit their mighty peaks, grow crops on rich volcanic soils, even build houses in their vicinity...
"Warming Hole" In The Sky Appears Over US
Scientists are still unable to determine what is causing the "warming hole" over United States.
Some have suggested natural variations in sea surface temperatures could be responsible, but recent studies indicate the hole has been created due to air pollution.
Temperatures are increasing on global scale, but in the central and eastern United States warming has not kept pace
with other parts of the world over much of the last century.