A volcanic island suddenly appeared off the coast of Japan a few years ago, and this newly formed island just keeps growing and growing and growing and ...

On November 20th of last year, an underwater volcano erupted in the waters of the Pacific Ocean near southwestern Japan, rapidly forming a little island right next to Nishinoshima, an island that appeared the same way from an eruption in 1974. When it happened, as expected, it made for interesting news. But now, unexpectedly, the island seems to be growing by the day, fascinating scientists and many others. Within eight months, the island has expanded by 22 million square meters, roughly the same size as 18 baseball stadiums. The two islands have now become one.

This is a real treat for geologists, and all of us, too. Living in the modern world, we forget that Mother Earth is very much alive and always evolving. Sure, extreme weather is one thing, but when you can literally watch a new island forming, which will probably exist for way longer than mankind ever will, it's pretty exciting.

This reminds me of a story I read about a few years ago, that's somewhat related to this subject. India and Bangladesh were both claiming a tiny island in the Bay of Bengal as their own. This created tension, and negotiations were about to take place to put an end to the issue once and for all. One morning, everyone woke up, and the island was gone! Rising sea levels drowned the tiny island, and it disappeared into the ocean. As you might have guessed, negotiations were cancelled on the spot.

Anyway, this Japanese island is probably bigger now than when you started reading this article. Just a little bit, but it's showing no signs of stopping.


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