VULCANICITY is a process through which molten rocks (magma) are intruded within the earth’s crust or extruded onto the earth’s surface.
Vulcanicity is aided by the process of faulting which forms cracks in the earth’s crust through which magma escapes.
When magma is intruded within the earth’s crust, it cools down and solidifies to form intrusive volcanic features e.g. batholiths, sills, dykes, lopolith, and laccolith.
When magma is extruded onto the earth’s surface, it changes to lava leading to the formation of lava plateaus, calderas, craters, hot springs, fumaroles, and geysers
Economic importance of volcanicity
- Sills can lead to formation of waterfalls e.g. Karuma falls which are good sites for generation of hydro electric power.
- Volcanic Mountains help in the formation of relief rainfall on the wind ward side which supports agriculture.
- Hot springs provide medicinal water e.g. Kitagata hot spring water contains sulphur which is used to treat skin diseases.
- Volcanicity leads to the formation of lakes which provide water for domestic and industrial use e.g. Lake Bunyonyi.
- Crater lakes are a source of minerals which can be sold for money e.g. salt obtained from Lake Katwe.
- Volcanicity favours mining because it exposes valuable minerals near the surface of the earth e.g. Diamond mining in Mwadui plug in Tanzania.
- Volcanic features attract tourists who bring in foreign exchange used for national development.
- Volcanic lava leads to production of fertile soil hence favouring agriculture e.g. coffee growing along the slopes of Mt. Elgon.
- Its a basis for geographical studies hence improving on research and study purposes.