Most people like a good scare, which is why disaster stories make gripping films. But some disasters are so colossal that no film could ever do them justice. They have happened ever since life first appeared on Earth, and another one could strike at any time. From gigantic eruptions to collisions with asteroids, they have the power to devastate life on Earth, or even to wipe it out altogether. Countdown to Disaster explains how these disasters happen, and how likely each kind is to strike. It looks into the past, showing when they have occurred, and what effect they had. Even more importantly, it looks forwards; explaining what would happen if one of these disasters happened today – is there anything we can do? Includes topics such as supervolcanoes, global warming, and asteroids. This is a companion volume to Countdown to Extinction.