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The history of the Kilauea Volcano dates back hundreds of thousands of years, when it first began erupting below the surface of the South Pacific Ocean. It is estimated that the eruption of the volcano began somewhere between 300,000 and 600,000 years ago, and it finally rose above the surface of the ocean between 50,000 to 100,000 years ago.
Since its initial eruption, the volcano has been continually active, and thousands of tourists come to see the fiery glow of the flowing lava every year. Kilauea is the youngest volcano on the island of Hawaii, and is found on the southern side connected to a much larger volcano, Moan Loa.
The current eruption of the volcano began in 1983, and shows no sign of slowing down. In the process, this eruption has added more than 100 square kilometers of land to the southern shores of the island. The lava flow has destroyed more than a hundred houses, a volcano visitor center, and more.
The majority of the volcano’s eruptions have been non-explosive, which means that the lava smoothly flows down in river fashion, but there have been the explosive varieties as well.
In 2003, the current eruption reached its 20-year mark, making it’s the world’s longest eruption. Today it is still flowing, continually adding to this record.