In news: In the Philippines, a volcano called Taal on the island of Luzon, 50 km from Manila, erupted recently, spewing lava on the ground, and ash and smoke into the sky. 

A complex volcano: 

  • Taal is classified as a “complex” volcano by the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS). 
  • The Taal volcano does not rise from the ground as a distinct, singular dome but consists of multiple stratovolcanoes (volcanoes susceptible to explosive eruptions), conical hills and craters of all shapes and sizes.

A complex volcano, also called a compound volcano, is defined as one that consists of a complex of two or more vents, or a volcano that has an associated volcanic dome, either in its crater or on its flanks. Examples include Vesuvius, besides Taal.


Location: Taal’s closeness to Manila puts lives at stake. Because the country is situated at the boundaries of two tectonic plates — the Philippines Sea Plate and Eurasian plate — it is particularly susceptible to earthquakes and volcanism.