Al Jazeera World

Living with the Volcano

Life in the shadow of an active volcano might be risky but people living near Mount Vesuvius in Italy are there to stay.

Volcanic eruptions, large-scale destruction, seismic movements and emergency evacuation – are all constant threats to the three million people who live near the world’s most dangerous active volcano, Mount Vesuvius, near Naples, Italy.

The 800,000 who live in the “red zone” in the immediate vicinity of the volcano are at even greater risk.

Mount Vesuvius has not erupted since 1944, but many volcanologists say a new explosion is due.

In this documentary, we meet local people who, far from living in fear, embrace life in the red zone and would not live anywhere else. While some are understandably nervous, farmers and gardeners love the rich soil and the quality produce, while winemakers make a good living. Others are so attached to the volcano that they miss it when they go away, and a supportive community has formed in the high-risk area.

This film reveals the human side of volcanic seismology and captures the contradictions and complexities of living in the shadow of what some locals call “a monster”.