Over the past two thousand years, volcanoes have influenced natural temperature variations more significantly than previously thought. This conclusion, according to Dendrochronologia, came to the British scientists, who decided to clarify the role of volcanoes in human history.
Large-scale volcanic eruptions can lead to catastrophic consequences. Ashes and other volcanic substances can trap in the atmosphere of the planet, closing the sunlight and provoking the cold. Vegetation of plants is decreasing and, accordingly, there are crop failures, which lead to hunger, epidemics and political instability. In human history, there have been many such periods.
The staff of the University of Cambridge decided to clarify how volcanic activity has affected the world history in the last two millennia. For this purpose, scientists have studied about nine thousand samples of dead and living trees, as well as analyzed ice cores. As a result, the researchers received reliable information about temperatures in North America and Eurasia in winter and summer, starting from the first century AD.
“We found that volcanic activity played a more than significant role in temperature variations. During periods when the planet was low in volcanic activity, temperatures were much higher than during periods of intense volcanic activity. Previously, we underestimated the contribution of volcanoes to temperature changes,” scientists say.