The change in climatic conditions as observed by the scientist was as a result of volcanic activity. The paper will explain the various climatic effects that resulted from volcanic eruption in the past1.
The change was linked to the eruption of the Laki fissure system. Laki fissure system was a chain of volcanic activities that results to the movement of lava through several cracks in the ground rather than from a single point. The eruption happened in Iceland. The Laki eruptions took place in more than 8 months and produced about 14 km3 of basalt that was made up thin, black and fluid lava. The eruption also resulted to production of ash clouds that made their way into the stratosphere. The ash clouds formed a dense haze across Europe which resulted to blockage of the sun’s rays from reaching the ground. In addition to the ash, the eruptive clouds that came out of the fissures consisted mainly of high quantities of hydrogen chloride, sulfur dioxide and hydrogen Fluoride gases2. These gases combined with atmospheric water to produce acid rain that lead to death of livestock as well as destruction of vegetations and crops. The effect was however severe in Iceland where seventy five percent of the livestock and twenty five percent of the people died from the toxic impact of the volcanic activities. The impact of the eruption was also felt in places far away from Iceland. During the period the United States recorded low temperatures. In fact, the temperatures in the northern hemisphere decreased by over a degree Celsius.
There are various reasons on how large volcanic eruption may have an impact on the global climate. Volcanic eruptions often produce large quantities of carbon dioxide, a gas that is associated with the green house effect. Carbon dioxide is known to trap gases that are been radiated form the surface of the earth forming an insulations around the earth. The green house impact is essential for human survival as it maintains the temperatures