While this has been a relatively average year for the world's active volcanoes, the activity that did take place was spectacular. Out of an estimated 1,500 active volcanoes, 50 or so erupt every year, spewing steam, ash, toxic gases, and lava. In 2017, erupting volcanoes included Shiveluch in Russia, Villarrica in Chile, Mount Sinabung and Mount Agung in Indonesia, Turrialba in Costa Rica, Piton de la Fournaise on Réunion Island, Kilauea on Hawaii, Popocatepetl and Volcán de Colima in Mexico, Bogoslof Volcano in Alaska, Manaro Voui in Vanuatu, Mount Etna in Sicily, and more. Collected below are scenes from the wide variety of volcanic activity on Earth over the past year.

1. An eruption of ash rises from Shiveluch volcano on Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula, at sunrise on December 5, 2017.
Gennady Teplitskiy / Shutterstock
2. An Indonesian woman watches an eruption of Mount Sinabung from Tiga Pancur village, in Karo in North Sumatra on November 3, 2017. Sinabung roared back to life in 2010 for the first time in 400 years. After another period of inactivity it erupted once more in 2013, and has remained highly active since.
Ivan Damanik / AFP / Getty
3. In this timed-exposure night photo taken early on February 12, 2017, Mount Sinabung spews reddish clouds of ash, as seen from the Karo district in North Sumatra province.
AFP / Getty
4. Elementary schoolchildren play outside of their classrooms as Mount Sinabung spews thick volcanic ash as seen from Karo, North Sumatra province, on February 10, 2017.
AFP / Getty
5. Motorists cover their faces as thick ash blankets in Tiga Pancur village in Karo, North Sumatra on August 2, 2017, after Mount Sinabung erupted.
Ivan Damanik / AFP / Getty
6. A long-time exposure shows a lightning storm and the reddish glow of molten lava, which flows from the Piton de la Fournaise, one of the world's most active volcanoes, on the French Indian Ocean Réunion Island on February 3, 2017.
Gilles Adt / Reuters
7. Lava erupts and flows from the Piton de la Fournaise, on the island of Réunion, on July 14, 2017, according to the Piton de la Fournaise Volcano Observatory (OVPF).
Richard Bouhet / AFP / Getty
8. An aerial view shows lava flowing down the Piton de la Fournaise volcano on February 1, 2017.
Richard Bouhet / AFP / Getty
9. On May 28, 2017, Bogoslof volcano, a submarine stratovolcano in the Aleutian Islands that just barely pokes its summit above sea level, was captured by a passing satellite as it erupted. This Worldview satellite image collected on May 28 shows the initial development of the eruption cloud. The eruption began about 18 minutes prior to this image and the cloud rose to an altitude in excess of 40,000 ft above sea level. The white color of the cloud is due to the large amount of water that is incorporated into the eruption column as the vent is located in shallow water. Bogoslof erupted numerous times throughout the early months of 2017.
Dave Schneider / Alaska Volcano Observatory & U.S. Geological Survey
10. A closer look at the Worldview satellite image of the May 28th Bogoslof eruption. Note the explosive activity at the base, called "tephra jets." These are common where extremely hot volcanic material and gas meet water, converting explosively into particle-filled clouds of steam.
Dave Schneider / Alaska Volcano Observatory & U.S. Geological Survey
11. The Himawari 8 weather satellite also happened to have Alaska's Bogoslof volcano in view during its May 28 eruption, capturing this sequence of images as the ash cloud reached more than 40,000 feet above sea level, then spread out on the winds.
Japan Meteorological Agency
12. A volcanic cloud rising above Bogoslof volcano during an eruption event on June 23, 2017. The view is from Mutton Cove on southwest Unalaska Island about 67 kilometers southeast of the volcano. The Alaska Volcano Observatory estimated the volcanic cloud reached about 36,000 feet above sea level.
Masami Sugiyama courtesy of Allison Everett / Alaska Volcano Observatory & Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys / Masami Sugiyama
13. The steaming caldera of Bogoslof volcano, seen during an overflight on August 15, 2017. Some of the taller rocks date back to its first emergence from the sea, recorded in 1796.
Janet Schaefer / Alaska Volcano Observatory & Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys
14. A tourist looks at the ash spewed out by the Turrialba volcano in Cartago, Costa Rica, on January 6, 2017. Costa Rican authorities declared a green alert in the entire metropolitan area around the capital.
Ezequiel Becerra / AFP / Getty
15. A view of woods burned by a pyroclastic flow spewed out by the Turrialba Volcano in Cartago, Costa Rica, on February 3, 2017.
Ezequiel Becerra / AFP / Getty
16. View of Villarrica volcano taken from Pucon, some 800 kilometers south of Santiago, Chile, showing signs of activity on December 6, 2017.
Christian Miranda / AFP / Getty
17. An open lava stream pours out of a lava-tube exit, approximately 70 feet up on a sea cliff, falling into the ocean below, on January 28, 2017. Lava flowing from Kilauea began entering the sea in this location at the start of the year, intensifying into a "fire hose" of airborne lava. The flow subsided after a collapse on February 2.
Hawaiian Volcano Observatory / USGS
18. A lava flow at the ocean edge is viewed on December 16, 2016, in this aerial photo taken along the Kona Kohala Coast, Hawaii.
George Rose / Getty
19. Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geologists observed a breakout from an inflating tumulus on the slopes of Kīlauea on December 6, 2017. As pāhoehoe lava flowed from the tumulus, it cooled and crusted over. But this crust could not contain the amount of lava being supplied to the flow, and molten lava subsequently broke through it.
Hawaiian Volcano Observatory / USGS
20. Coastal breakouts from Kīlauea on October 4, 2017. Over the previous weeks, there were at least three breakouts within 100 meters (330 feet) of the Kamokuna ocean entry. These lava cascades consisted of both ‘a‘ā and pāhoehoe flows onto the delta. This image was taken by a time-lapse camera of multiple lava cascades on the sea cliff on October 4. Just a few of the many resulting surface flows can be seen on the delta both below the cliff and near the front, which is lit by lava and moonlight.
Hawaiian Volcano Observatory / USGS
21. Numerous fumaroles are present near the rim of Kilauea's Halema'uma'u Crater, evident by the bright yellow sulfur deposits. In recent years these fumaroles have been covered by a thick carpet of "Pele's hair" (glassy strands of cooled lava) produced by the lava lake. Moisture emitted by the fumaroles collects as tiny water droplets on the fine hairs, resembling a thin dusting of snow, photographed here, on May 28, 2017.
Hawaiian Volcano Observatory / USGS
22. Closeup of the lava stream pouring out of a tube on the sea cliff at the Kamokuna ocean entry at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island of Hawaii on January 28, 2017.
U.S. Geological Survey via AP
23. Ash spews from the Popocatepetl volcano as seen from Tepehitec community in Tlaxcala State, Mexico, on November 10, 2017. The Popocatepetl volcano, located about 55 kilometers from Mexico City, has been recording numerous low-intensity eruptions since late September.
Emmanuel Flores / AFP / Getty
24. Steam and ash emanates from the Manaro Voui volcano located on Vanuatu's northern island Ambae in the South Pacific, on October 1, 2017. A sudden increase in eruptions in September led officials to raise alarms for island residents, with nearly all evacuated by mid-October. The Vanuatu Daily Post reported that local chiefs made a trek to the shores of Lake Voui for a ceremony and offering to the custodian of Lake Voui: "A highly valued animal (pig) was slaughtered in line with custom. Chief Tari One uttered a custom address at the shore of Lake Voui before the ingredients complete with meat, food, and mats were offered by being released into the lake."
Ben Bohane / Reuters
25. Mount Agung volcano is seen spewing ash in Bali, Indonesia, on November 26, 2017.
Courtesy Emilio Kuzma-Floyd @eyes_of_a_nomad / Reuters
26. A tourist poses in front of Mount Agung at Amed beach in Karangasem on Indonesia's resort island of Bali on November 30, 2017.
Juni Kriswanto / AFP / Getty
27. View of Mount Agung during an eruption seen from Kubu sub-district in Karangasem Regency, on Bali, on November 26, 2017.
Sonny Tumbelaka / AFP / Getty
28. Villagers watch a river overflowing with water mixed with volcanic ash during the eruption of Mount Agung in Karangasem, Bali, Indonesia, on November 28, 2017.
Johannes Christo / Reuters
29. Clouds of ash from Mount Agung are lit with warm sunset light in Karangasem, Bali, Indonesia, on November 30, 2017. Authorities told tens of thousands of people to leave an area extending 10 kilometers (6 miles) from the volcano as it belched volcanic materials into the air.
Firdia Lisnawati / AP
30. A fisherman sits on a traditional boat as Mount Agung erupts, seen from Kubu sub-district in Karangasem Regency on Indonesia's resort island of Bali on November 28, 2017.
Sonny Tumbelaka / AFP / Getty
31. A silhouette of a man admiring the eruption of Mount Etna in Sicily, Italy.
Marco Calandra / Shutterstock
32. Snow-covered Mount Etna, Europe's most active volcano, spews lava during an eruption in the early hours of March 16, 2017.
Salvatore Allegra / AP
33. A photographer takes images of lava flow on Italy's Mount Etna.
Wead / Shutterstock
34. A tourist stands in front of Mount Etna, Europe's tallest and most active volcano, as it spews lava during an eruption on the southern island of Sicily, Italy, on February 28, 2017.
Antonio Parrinello / Reuters
35. A recently ejected volcanic rock steams as it sits on the snowy slopes of Mount Etna during a February 2017 eruption.
Wead / Shutterstock
36. A nighttime view of an eruption of Mount Etna in February 2017.
Wead / Shutterstock
37. The orange glow of a lava flow reflects on snow on the side of Italy's Mount Etna as it erupts on the southern island of Sicily, Italy, on February 28, 2017.
Antonio Parrinello / Reuters
38. Snow-covered Mount Etna spews lava during an eruption in the early hours of March 16, 2017.
Salvatore Allegra / AP
39. The Colima or Fuego volcano spews ash and steam on January 23, 2017, as seen from San Antonio, Colima State, Mexico.
Hector Guerrero / AFP / Getty
40. View from the Comala community, Colima State, Mexico, of the "volcano of fire" in eruption on January 19, 2017. Colima volcano is one of the most active in Mexico.
Sergio Velasco Garcia / AFP / Getty