Bali volcano REVERSE global warming: NASA say Mount Agung could plunge earth into ice age | World | News

Volcanic debris, ash and other particles have continued to spew out of the volcano, leaving a seven-mile high hazardous cloud above the mountain top.

Evacuation orders are in place for the 100,000 villagers and citizens living within six miles of the mountain, while thousands of tourists remain stranded after the main airport was closed for more than two days.


But experts have warned the Bali volcano may affect the whole world, possibly cooling the planet for up to five years.

And the result will be in a reverse of global warming, as the planet’s temperatures cool instead of increasing as projected.


Volcanic ash has continued to spew out of the volcan

Scientists have known for a long time volcanic eruptions can alter the planet’s climate for months on end, as millions of gases and particles spread through the atmosphere.

But how much this is changed depends on what is being erupted – with a volcanic explosion causing the ideal conditions to trigger a drastic change to earth’s temperature.

NASA climate scientist Chris Colose said: “To have a notable climate impact, there needs to be an explosive enough eruption (to get material in the stratosphere) and a sulphur-rich eruption (the SO2 converts to sulphate aerosol, which is what radiatively matters).

“If these conditions are met, the eruption cools the surface/troposphere and warms the stratosphere, the opposite of both patterns associated with CO2 increases. But both are very short-lived (~years).”


The Bali volcano rises 300m above ground


Some 100,000 people have been told to evacuate their homes

For volcanoes to do anything to climate you need a lot of SO2 released and a high enough plume for that SO2 to get into the stratosphere

NASA climate scientist Chris Colose

In 1963, Mt Agung eruptions reached as high as 16 miles (26km) above sea level. about 1,110 people were killed in the devastating blast.

The 1963 eruption was not exceptional in volume of ash produced, according to Mr Colose, but “somewhat unique in sulphur released”.

He said: “For volcanoes to do anything to climate you need a lot of SO2 released and a high enough plume for that SO2 to get into the stratosphere.

“The SO2 particles have sizes comparable to a visible wavelength and are strongly scattering to incoming sunlight, cooling…

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