Italy

The Sleeping Giants of Italy; Silvia Marchetti; OZY

Italy – Mount Etna

People flock to Italy for any number of reasons — the art, the fashion, the pasta Bolognese. But volcanoes? Believe it or not, my lovely country boasts the highest number and concentration of volcanoes in Europe. According to the Italian Center for National Research, the country has:

10 ACTIVE VOLCANOES, PLUS 12 MORE SLEEPING GIANTS, THAT COULD ERUPT AT ANY TIME.

This means that Italians are among the most exposed in the world to volcanic explosions. Remember what happened in Pompeii back in 79 A.D., when a catastrophic eruption buried thousands of fleeing villagers under a carpet of ash? Well a disaster like that could happen again — with even more dire consequences. “Italy lies in a very unfortunate spot: right at the intersection of the Eurasian and African plates that are constantly scraping against one another and boosting the underground trapped pressure,” explains Mario Sprovieri, an underwater geology researcher.

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