Cities on Volcanoes 6 - Tenerife 2010
The international conference Cities on Volcanoes COV6 was held in Tenerife (Spain) from May 31 to June 4, 2010.
The Cities on Volcanoes conferences are important meetings of scientists from many disciplines. Not only volcanologists and geo-scientists attend; the social sciences also play an increasingly important role. Risk management is one of the most important issues in active volcanic and geothermal environments. This refers not only to local residents or volcano tourists, but also to strategies how to deal with volcanic eruptions affecting several countries with the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull a very recent example.
As part of the conference program a separate session with the theme Volcano Tourism was included for the first time! The focus of the presentations was on volcanic and geothermal environments as TOURIST DESTINATIONS with special consideration of potential hazards, visitor safety, the challenges of risk management as well as sustainability issues in volcanic and geothermal areas.
The number of abstracts submitted confirmed that volcano tourism is actively researched in different parts of the world and the presenters appreciated the opportunity to talk about their individual research findings and projects.
As millions of people travel to active and dormant volcanic environments every year it is important to consider all aspects of visiting these often quite challenging areas to make volcano tourism for the increasing numbers of visitors as safe as possible.
Temporary visitors are generally not included in current risk management strategies which are in place for residents living near active volcanoes. Existing guidelines therefore need to be amended to include temporary visitors, as these rarely have sufficient information about evacuation procedures, escape routes, shelters etc. in case of emergency.
Dr. Patricia Erfurt