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7 interesting bits of environmental trivia

Jan. 26, 2012, 7:14 a.m.
the volcano krakatoa with billowing smoke

Photo: flydime/Flickr

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The volcano Krakatoa made the loudest noise in modern history in 1883

The Indonesian volcano Krakatoa erupted in 1883 in a big, big way, killing more than 40,000 people (and some estimate it was more than 120,000) and produced a sound that was reportedly heard nearly 3,000 miles away. The eruption began in earnest in June 1883 and culminated with four monstrous blasts a few months later in August — blasts that were heard in both Perth, Australia (2,200 miles away), and on the island of Rodrigues in the Indian Ocean (3,000 miles away). A huge tsunami followed shortly thereafter, reaching more than 150 feet high in some places. The final and most cataclysmic blast exploded out of Krakatoa at a speed of more than 675 miles per hour and was so powerful that it blew out the eardrums of nearby sailors and continued to be readable on barographs all around the world for days afterward.