Meet Niijima, The Latest Addition To Planet Earth

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On November 21st, Japanese Coast Guards released photos of a brand new island created by an eruption of an underwater volcano in the Pacific Ocean, about a thousand kilometers south of the country's capital, Tokyo. While exciting, it received a somewhat lukewarm reception, given that most such islands tend to disappear within a short period of time. However now it seems that the volcanic landmass that has been called Niijima, may be here to stay!

The earth's latest baby is a mere 13.8 acres and rises just 60 to 80 feet about the ocean waters. It lies adjacent to Nishino-Shima, a larger landmass that was also created by an eruption in the Izu-Bonin-Mariana arc system in 1973-74.

The arc that extends 2,800 km all the way from south of Tokyo to beyond Guam, lies along the western edge of the Pacific 'Ring Of Fire' - a region where 90% of the world's earthquakes occur.

Niijima is so young that the thin puffs of smoke and volcanic ash can still be seen spewing up. This is good news to scientists because it indicates that the islet is still growing and may last longer than those recently formed near Pakistan and the Red Sea, which simply eroded away after a short time.

So will Niijima be making an appearance in the world atlas anytime soon? Probably not. That's because the Japanese meteorological agency predicts it will probably last just a few years and that is only if a massive volcano eruption doesn't blow it apart before that. We sure hope not!

Resources: earthobservatory.NASA.gov, latimes.com

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Geography
306 Comments
  • mhkgc235
    mhkgc235Monday, June 29, 2020 at 2:51 am
    wow!! cool!
    • LifeWednesday, February 20, 2019 at 10:27 am
      So cool
      • LifeWednesday, February 20, 2019 at 10:26 am
        Cool. I like it.
        • dardar
          dardarTuesday, February 7, 2017 at 5:46 pm
          That is very cool and interesting
          • MikeTheHackerThursday, January 12, 2017 at 11:40 am
            That's cool!
            • VannahWednesday, January 11, 2017 at 8:06 am
              Whoaaaaa
              • abhijay21
                abhijay21Friday, October 21, 2016 at 4:43 pm
                Totally OMG!!!!!!!
                • jmisaradeo
                  jmisaradeoWednesday, October 19, 2016 at 10:26 am
                  It is such a huge thing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
                  • jmisaradeo
                    jmisaradeoWednesday, October 19, 2016 at 10:25 am
                    I think that this is totally awsome
                    • skycupcake Thursday, September 15, 2016 at 1:50 pm
                      this is so cool im in 6th grade and i have learned about this. i learn in class when lava touches water it turns into rock i think thats why the island