Why is Mount Kilauea considered the most active volcano in the world?

Kilauea is the youngest volcano on the Big Island of Hawaii. It stands above the ocean floor, but is not a large volcano, reaching a mere 1,277 maters above sea level. The Hawaiians believed that Kilauea is the home of Pele, the Hawaiian volcano goddess, and that it erupted when she was annoyed. Apparently, the goddess has been very angry of late, for Kilauea has been spewing continuously since 1983.

Actually, Kilauea has had continuous activity during the 19th century, and the early part of this century. Through most of the eruptions were gentle ones, scientists know that the volcano has an extensive layer of ash and rock called tephra that can be blasted as high as 17 kilometers. Since 1952, there have been 34 eruptions, and currently it is erupting in a remote area along its eastern edge, where more than 150 small earthquakes have been recorded. Is it any wonder that it is considered the most active volcano in the world?

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