Publié le 5 octobre 2021 Mis à jour le 11 mars 2022

History has shown us that economic consequences of a volcanic eruption can be disastrous, and nowadays 800 million people in 86 different countries are living within 100 km of an active or a potentially active volcano. Loss and damages can be direct, indirect, tangible or intangible, short-term or long-term, depending on the physical characteristics of the eruption and on the exposure and vulnerability of the economic activities. Existing databases on historical eruptions do not provide, or too sparsely, information on these economic impacts. The aim of our project is to build a new database to increase our understanding in the field, to facilitate the identification of vulnerability and resilience factors to future events.

We first selected a sample of 55 eruptions from 42 volcanoes located in 18 developing and developed countries, that occurred after the World War II. We documented a number of physical characteristics of these eruptions and volcanoes. Second, we identified the different damages and losses due to volcanic events through about 20 qualitative and quantitative variables. We collected economic information and data on these variables, using a variety of sources (governmental and non-governmental agencies, academic institutions, volcanic observatories, press, etc.) that are systematically cited. We also gathered data and information on the current human and economic geography of the selected volcanoes.

This database is accessible through this web interface where the community will be able to contribute to its development by recording information on the economic consequences of past and future events.

Visit the database here:

To cite and more information in: El Hadri H., Goujon M., Paris R. (2021) “A database of the economic impacts of historical volcanic eruptions”, Études et Documents, n°14, CERDI.

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