How many volcanoes are there in Japan?
There are about 80 active volcanoes. It is said that about 10% of the world's 800 active volcanoes are concentrated in Japan.
Seven volcanic belts run across the country、each of which has several active volcanoes.
One of the recent major eruptions was that of Mt. Fugen in Shimabara, Nagasaki Prefecture. This volcano erupted in 1990 for the first time in 200 years.
lts pyroclastic flow killed 43 people, and lava discharged from its crater covered part of Shimabara city.
Many people were forced to evacuate from their homes.
In March 2000, volcanic activity at Mt. Usu near Toyako Lake in Hokkaido began for the first time in 23 years.
But tremors made it possible to accurately predict eruptions and evacuate peopleliving nearby, avoiding any danger to human life.
However, in June 2000, earthquake activity on Miyake island, located about 100 kilometers to the south of Tokyo, increased, followed by the start of major volcanic eruptions.
With no end to the activity in site, a11 residents of the island were evacuated on September l｡
The eruptions eventually subsided, but the damage to homes and public facilities from volcanic ash and mudflows was enormous.
The islanders have yet to begin their return as of October, 2004.