Home » Filipino History » Taal is a supervolcano

Taal is a supervolcano

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It boggles me as to why Taal Lake is not generally considered as a supervolcano. All the characteristics of a supervolcano (collapsed caldera, gigantic ridges, etc.) are inherent in her. The breathtaking landscape of Tagaytay ridge, for instance, is actually the enormous rim of that ancient supervolcanic crater.

If I’m not mistaken, Taal Lake is the only supervolcano that still has an active crater in its center. Therefore, in my opinion, this makes Taal Volcano as the most dangerous in the world. To say that it is just one of the most dangerous is already false humility.

After reading Thomas R. Hargrove’s famous little book about Taal Lake and its mysterious volcano, I am finally convinced that people should stay out of the danger zone… PERMANENTLY. According to Hargrove’s research, several towns surrounding the lake were buried and/or submerged underwater throughout Taal Volcano’s recorded history. The Spanish friars tried their best to take the native Batangueños away from the volcano. They have transferred from place to place whenever the volcano’s unpredictable fury took away their homes. But now that they’re gone, their flocks’ stubborn descendants keep on returning to where they shouldn’t be in the first place.

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13 thoughts on “Taal is a supervolcano

  1. A super-volcano has to be VEI (Volcanic Explosivity Index) of 8.

    In comparison, Pinatubo (1991) was VEI 6. The largest recorded eruption at Taal (1754) was VEI 4.

    VEI, like earthquake magnitude, is logarithmic. That means each level is 100x more powerful than the last.

    So a super-volcano power is approximately Pinatubo x 100².

    The pre-historic eruption (circa 3-500,000 years ago) that formed Taal caldera was undoubtedly large, but isn’t calculated as a super-volcano. It was probably circa VEI 7.

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    • The material most likely is scattered around the 50-60km from the center. If you look on the area around the volcano, you can see the whole Cavite-Batangas area is kinda where most of the material settled with some settled under the lake itself.

      The whole Batangas-Cavite area is actually a sloped flank of Taal. I live in one of the cities in Cavite, and we generally understand that my location is higher in elevation against Manila, and I am closer to Manila than Taal.

      So definitely, Taal might be an old Supervolcano that like to explode always with smaller explosions.

      And erosion and ground flattening for construction flattered most of the material. But from miles from the volcano you can see it’s long deposit flanks up to Manila.

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  2. Yellowstone is another supervolcano, which has a lake in the center, but no obvious crater. Around Yellowstone are a lot of geysers and below it is a hotspot. They are also saying that when the Yellowstone hotspot erupts, it will also be a catastrophic eruption for the US and Canada.

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  3. I hope the authorities would take into consideration scientific facts when they make decisions. Nobody could defy science and get away with it, safe.

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  4. I agree with this probability. I live in Alfonso, Cavite where, within our coffee farm up to now, I can still see hardened lava. When I was a child, my mother would always ask us to collect these stones we call pila (hardened lava) and put it away so we could dig with ease for planting coffee trees. I imagine the volcano before was really huge to reach our place.

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