Convulsing supervolcano near Naples

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The Campi Flegrei supervolcano, located near Naples, Italy, has been showing increased seismic activity, raising concerns about a potential eruption. The volcano has been gradually inflating since 2005, and in August 2023, its seismic activity became more frequent and intense, with a magnitude-4.2 earthquake striking the caldera on September 27, the most powerful quake in almost 40 years. The Italian government is planning for a possible mass evacuation of tens of thousands of people who live around the supervolcano. Campi Flegrei is a large, bowl-shaped caldera centered on the Gulf of Pozzuoli, just outside Naples, and is home to more than 360,000 people, with a total of 2.3 million people living on or around it. The caldera was formed by two massive eruptions 36,000 and 15,000 years ago. While it is not possible to predict exactly when an eruption will occur, the probability of a cataclysmic supervolcanic eruption (an 8 on the Volcanic Explosivity Index scale) is 0.12% in the next 100 years, and the probability of a 7 on the scale is much higher, at 3.6%.
what is the history of volcanic activity near naples

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The area near Naples, Italy, is home to the Campi Flegrei caldera, one of the most hazardous volcanic systems on Earth. The caldera has experienced significant volcanic activity throughout history, with the most recent significant eruption occurring in 1538. The Campi Flegrei caldera has been the site of slow vertical movements since at least Roman times. A slow subsidence had occurred since the last eruption in 1538. An uplift observed in 1970 continued until 1972 without significant seismic activity. The inferred maximum uplift with respect to previous levellings was 170 cm. Slow ground oscillations observed between 1972 and 1982 had an annual period with a range of about 10-15 cm/year in the zone of maximum uplift. The rate of seismic strain energy release at Campi Flegrei was higher during the first three months of 1984 than during 1983. The seismic strain energy released in the first three months of 1984 was almost as high as that released during all of 1983, although it must be noted that seismic activity did not begin to be detected until March 1983. Since January 1985, there has been no detectable seismic activity at Campi Flegrei and the ground has been subsiding at a mean rate of ~1 cm/month without any seismic activity. The pattern of ground deformation during the crisis of 1982-84 was similar to that during 1970-72. In recent years, there has been an increase in seismic activity. For instance, 219 low-magnitude earthquakes occurred at Campi Flegrei during September 2012, a comparatively large number with respect to the previous year. As of October 2023, the Italian government is planning for a possible mass evacuation of tens of thousands of people who live around the Campi Flegrei super volcano near Naples due to increased seismic activity. The Campi Flegrei caldera has experienced two catastrophic events, the Campanian Ignimbrite (~40 ky) and the Neapolitan Yellow Tuff (~15 ky), and more than 60 eruptions. The caldera is still active, posing a significant risk to the dense population living nearby. The Campi Flegrei caldera has a trans-crustal magmatic feeding system characterized by a main storage reservoir hosted at ~9 km that feeds and interacts with shallow reservoirs, mainly placed at 2–4 km. The increased seismic activity is probably linked to a phenomenon known as bradyseism, when the earth rises, or falls, depending on the cycle, caused by the filling or emptying of underground magma chambers. In conclusion, the history of volcanic activity near Naples is marked by significant eruptions and periods of seismic activity. The Campi Flegrei caldera remains an active and closely monitored volcanic system due to its potential to impact the densely populated surrounding areas.
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