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Puy-de-Dôme in the Auvergne : France

Puy-de-Dôme in the Auvergne : France

In the heart of the Massif Central in France, is a range of about 80 extinct volcanoes, the Puys or Dômes, which testify to the recent volcanic activity (15000 years ago) of the region. They have also been described as “textbook volcanoes,” being remarkably well preserved with well-defined summit craters.

When a solidified lava plug is pushed bodily up out of the neck, like a piston, due to pressure of magma and volatiles trapped beneath it, Plug Domes up to more than 300 m high with no craters are created. Smaller plugs form lava spine, standing hundreds of feet above the summit of the dome.

Puy de Dome Auvergne and Mount Pelee, Martinique are the two most famous examples of volcanic spines.

The pristine quality of this natural heritage is linked to the sparse population, the reforestation of areas deserted by the rural exodus, and the persistence of the old customary legal framework which has always favoured collective property over private parcels of land.

Puy-de-Dôme

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