The 1991 eruption of Volcan Hudson, Chile : impacts on agriculture and rural communities and long-term recovery

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Wilson, T.M.; Stewart, C.; Cole, J.W.; Dewar, D.J.; Johnston, D.M.; Cronin, S.J. 2009 The 1991 eruption of Volcan Hudson, Chile : impacts on agriculture and rural communities and long-term recovery. Lower Hutt, N.Z.: GNS Science. GNS Science report 2009/66 77 p. 

Abstract: The August 1991 eruption of Volcán Hudson, in southern Chile, was the third-largest eruption of the 20th century. The eruption distributed ash over 150,000 km2 in Chile and Argentina, and reached the Falkland Islands. Land use in the impacted region included extensive pastoral agriculture and more intensive pockets of horticultural land, with the immediate consequences of the eruption being widespread livestock losses and impacts on crops and pastures. In proximal regions farms were abandoned. Given the similar latitude, temperate climate of the region and the similarity of pastoral farming systems, this eruption represents a close analogue to what may be expected in New Zealand from a moderate-to-large sized volcanic eruption from the Taupo Volcanic Zone or Taranaki Volcano. This report presents and discusses findings from a three-week study tour, in January/February 2008, of the region of Patagonia affected by the 1991 eruption of Volcán Hudson. Our field work was concerned with an assessment of the short and long term impacts of the eruption, and the extent to which recovery has occurred over this time period of almost 17 years. We placed particular emphasis on the impacts on farms, water supplies and other infrastructure, and on rural communities. (auth/DG)