Volcanoes in FIFA World Cup Countries

This is a reblog of sorts. Erik Klemetti is hosting the Volcano World Cup at his blog “Eruptions,” listing volcanoes in all the countries competing in the 2014 FIFA World Cup and asking his readers to choose which country gets the award. (See bottom of this for updates)

Group A (see the above link) includes Brazil, Cameroon, Croatia and Mexico. Of course, I voted for Popocatépetl’s home country of Mexico!

Remember Don Goyo’s surprise on June 17, 2013?

Group B has Australia, Chile, the Netherlands and Spain. Now, if it had included New Zealand, home of the Auckland and Taupo volcanic zones and much more, that would have been a shoo-in. Instead, I think Chile’s many active and powerful volcanoes are the winning factor here. Spain’s Canary Islands make it a very close second.

Chile’s Chaiten Volcano erupted for the first time in recorded history on May 2, 2008:

His Group C brings us Colombia, Greece, Ivory Coast (points for ambiance!) and Japan. Frankly, I think Colombia, Greece and Japan are just about tied here, but Fuji’s social significance as well as the impact on Tokyo when it next erupts, together with the country’s new volcanic island of Nishinoshima, make Japan the winner here, in my eyes.

Seriously, what other volcano has such an international reputation as Fuji?

Certainly that scenery will change drastically when Fuji next erupts, but something like it will come back eventually.

This is why we are in awe of volcanoes, after all: There can be no such transcendent peace without a coexisting potential for utter devastation. How fortunate we are to lived while Fujisan slumbers!

Group D is Costa Rica, England, Italy and Uruguay (once upon a time [PDF]). Italy is the clear winner here because of active and beautiful Mount Etna, dangerous Vesuvius, and the very concerning Campi Flegrei (also known as the Phlegraen Fields).

Thomas Reichart captured some surreal video on Etna in December 2006.


Group E includes France, Switzerland (no volcanoes), Ecuador and Honduras. Though, as Dr. Klemetti notes, France’s Piton de la Fournaise erupted Saturday morning, I think that Ecuador wins this one hands down.

Remember this dramatic video when Tungurahua erupted earlier this year?


Group F includes Argentina, Iran, Nigeria and Bosnia & Herzegovina (no volcanoes). Argentina wins this round by sheer numbers, but I’m also voting for it because of Laguna del Maule, possible site of the world’s next caldera-forming eruption.

Don’t quote me on this, but I think everything in the background of this video profile of two volcanologists is the Laguna del Maule caldera – it’s huge!

Group G includes Germany (this includes the Laacher See), the United States, Ghana (no volcanoes, I think – Lake Bosumtwi sits in an impact crater, not a caldera) and Portugal. USA! USA! Also, Yellowstone! Hawaii!

That said, Portugal’s Azores are beautiful!


Group H includes Belgium (close to Germany’s Eifel Volcanic Field, but apparently not volcanic?), South Korea, Russia and Algeria. Russia overwhelmingly wins this, both for the active Kamchatka volcanoes and, in my opinion anyway, for the awesome Siberian Traps.

There are some amazing volcanoes on Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula, none more beautiful than Klyuchevskoy:


Dr. K’s Round of 16.

  • Games 1-4: Mexico v. Spain; Chile v. Cameroon; Japan v. Costa Rica; and Italy v. Costa Rica.
  • Games 5-8: Ecuador v. Iran; Argentina v. France; USA v. Algeria; Russia v. Portugal.
  • Semifinals: 1. Japan v. USA. 2. Chile v. Russia.
  • Finals: Chile v. US.
  • And the winner is…!

Categories: Sunday morning volcano

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