*) This even is free of charge for graduate students (Ind.: Mahasiswa Pascasarjana)


Volcanoes are one of the most spectacular and beautiful features of the physical world. On the other hand, great volcanic eruptions in historic times have brought death and destruction to many areas around the world. Volcanoes pose a threat to almost half a billion people; today there are approximately 500 active volcanoes on Earth, and every year there are 10 to 40 volcanic eruptions. Volcanic eruptions produce hazardous effects for the biodiversity, environment, climate, as well as the health of the exposed persons, and are associated with the deterioration of social and economic conditions. Erupting volcanoes have claimed more than 1000 lives in every year. This number includes not only those that are killed by pyroclastic flows, mudflows, and ash falls but also those that die from starvation after crop failures because of volcanic eruptions. Furthermore, relatively small amounts of ash can be fatal to animals because of the loss of vegetation and the ingestion of poisonous ash on what vegetation remains  (Kirianov 2000).

Volcanic ash contains components that can stimulate biological production in the marine and aqueous environments. Volcanic ash is also a good fertilizer and contains many elements that increase soil fertility. Volcanism can change the gas composition of the atmosphere, increase the temperature of the atmosphere, and cause a decrease in solar radiation reaching Earth’s surface. Along with magma and steam (H2O), the following gases surface in the environment: carbon dioxide (CO2) and sulphur dioxide (SO2), carbon monoxide (CO), hydrogen sulphide (H2S), carbon sulphide (CS), carbon disulfide (CS2), hydrogen chloride (HCl), hydrogen (H2), methane (CH4), hydrogen fluoride (HF), hydrogen bromide (HBr) and various organic compounds, as well as heavy metals (mercury, lead, gold). Their unfavourable effects depend on the distance from a volcano, on magma viscosity, and on gas concentrations. The hazards closer to the volcano include pyroclastic flows, flows of mud, gases and steam, earthquakes, blasts of air, and tsunamis. Among the hazards in distant areas are the effects of toxic volcanic ashes and problems of the respiratory system, eyes and skin, as well as psychological effects, injuries, transport and communication problems, waste disposal and water supplies issues, collapse of buildings and power outage. Further effects are the deterioration of water quality, fewer periods of rain, crop damages, and the destruction of vegetation (Zuskin et al. 2007).

Plants are destroyed over a wide area, during an eruption. Wild-lives and livestock have been killed by lava flows, pyroclastic flows, tephra falls, atmospheric effects, gases, and tsunami. They can also die from famine, forest fires, and earthquakes caused by or related to eruptions. The 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens (USA) provides an example. It estimated that 11,000 hares, 6,000 deer, 5,200 elk, 1,400 coyotes, 300 bobcats, 200 black bears, and 15 mountain lions died from the pyroclastic flows of the 1980 eruption. Aquatic life can be affected by an increase in acidity, increased turbidity, change in temperature, and/or change in food supply. These factors can damage or kill fish. Eruptions can influence bird migration, roosting, flying ability, and feeding activity. The impact of eruptions on insects depends on the size of the eruption and the stage of growth of the insect. For example, ash can be very abrasive to wings.


How do Volcanoes Affect the Biodiversity and Environment?

1. Genetic diversity
2. Diversity of species
3. Diversity of ecosystems
4. Ethnobiology & Socioeconomics
5. Life Science and Technology



Jl. Pancasila No. 2, Buluksumur, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Tel. +62 274 563461

Date : 18-19 March 2017
Time : 08.00 to 16.30 WIB


Note: All manuscripts relating to the sub-themes can be submitted.