Bizarro Earth

Lava erupts from Hawaii's Kilauea volcano

One of the world's most active volcanoes began erupting again on Hawaii's Big Island Thursday morning, sending a thick ribbon of lava from its summit down into the forests nearby.

The lava lake at the summit of Kilauea Volcano, located within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park near the southern end of the island, was still active Friday, according to officials with the U.S. Geological Survey office that monitors the volcano.

The volcano's lava flow posed no threat to surrounding communities at this time, they added, "but [they] are being monitored closely," as some of the lava flows "are marked by smoke plumes where lava is creeping into the forest."

Comment: The number of volcanoes erupting right now is greater than the 20th century's YEARLY average! Other signs of increased volcanic activity recently include:
  • Huge columns of ash being spewed form the Cotopaxi volcano in Ecuador and Mexico's Colima volcano.
  • A series of avalanches on Mount Ruapehu, New Zealand, with vulcanology expert Harry Keys stating "I've been up the crater lake a lot and I don't remember ever seeing so many avalanches in the crater."
  • Reunion Island volcano in the Indian ocean erupting again.


Reunion Island volcano erupts again

The volcano on Reunion Island erupted Monday after a dramatic increase in seismic activity throughout the day. The Piton de la Fournaise captured the world's attention last month when it erupted after beach cleaners found a piece of wreckage believed to have come from a missing airliner.

On Monday night tourists flocked to good viewing spots to watch the volcano's eruption. Local residents and tourists hiked about an hour up a nearby mountain at night to watch the volcano. The volcano erupted throughout the night spewing lava, fire and red smoke for hours.

Comment: Elsewhere, there has been increased activity recently at the Cotopaxi volcano in Ecuador which is spewing out huge columns of ash, as is Mexico's Colima volcano.


Researchers find helium anomaly preceded Mount Ontake eruption

© Earthquake Research Institute, The University of Tokyo
Mount Ontake is located 200 km west of Tokyo on the border of Gifu and Nagano Prefectures. This image shows the continued release of steam and gas from the volcano after the eruption.
University of Tokyo researchers discovered an increase in a helium isotope during a ten-year period before the 2014 Mount Ontake eruption in central Japan. The finding suggests that this helium isotope anomaly is related to activation of the volcano's magma system and could be a valuable marker for long-term risk mitigation concerning volcanic eruption.

Small quantities of the isotope helium-3 are present in the mantle, while helium-4 is produced in the crust and mantle by radioactive decay. A higher ratio of helium-3 to helium-4 therefore indicates that a sample of helium gas originates from the mantle rather than the crust. Previous research suggested that variation of helium isotopic ratios over time in crater fumaroles and hot springs correlates well with volcanic activity.

However, helium anomalies reported in these studies were all related to magmatic eruptions, and not to hydro-volcanic or phreatic eruptions, caused when a heat source such as magma vaporizes water to steam. Because phreatic eruptions are highly local phenomena, they are extremely difficult to predict. Mount Ontake, which erupted unexpectedly on September 27, 2014 just before noon, is believed to have been a phreatic eruption, and resulted in 58 deaths with 5 still missing.

Bizarro Earth

Erupting mud volcano resembles a gigantic human eye from the sky

© Caters News Agency
This mud volcano in Russia is watching. Always watching...

This bizarre piece of land may look like a gigantic eye from the sky - but is in fact an erupting mud volcano.

The rare flare-up recently occurred at the Pugachevsky mud volcano on the east Russian island of Sakhalin.

From above it appears that the centre of the volcano is the pupil, which is surrounded by a muddy brown iris.

Control Panel

One of Japan's most active volcano shows increased activity; families evacuated as alert level raised

© Kyodo
An aerial view shows Mt. Sakurajima in Kagoshima, southwestern Japan.
Residents near the Sakurajima volcano on Kyushu, Japan's southernmost main island, evacuated to safer places Saturday after the government raised its alert level to 4 on a 5-point scale, indicating a major eruption could be imminent.

Level 4 is the highest ever for Sakurajima, located just 4 kilometres away from the centre of the major southern port city of Kagoshima, since the current volcanic alert system was launched in 2007.

Kyushu Electric Power's Sendai nuclear power plant, which Tuesday became the first to be rebooted under tighter safety rules adopted in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear plant disaster, is located just 50km from the volcano. No abnormality has been reported at the plant.

The alert was raised to 4, meaning people living in the area should prepare to evacuate, from 3, which restricts entry to the mountain area. In response, the Kagoshima city government issued an evacuation advisory for areas near the mountain, affecting 77 residents, all of whom left the areas by evening.

Many earthquakes originating from the volcano have been recorded since 7am Saturday and an increase in crustal movement was also observed, the Japan Meteorological Agency said, adding those are signs indicating magma has risen to near the volcanic vent.

Pacific Ring of Fire

Bizarro Earth

Japan raises eruption alert for volcano near nuclear plant

© Agence France-Presse
Japan’s weather agency on 15 August raised their alert to its second-highest level after picking up increasing seismic activity around the volcano Sakurajima.
Tokyo: Japan raised an eruption warning for a volcano on the southern island of Kyushu to the second-highest level, days after restarting a nuclear reactor 50 kilometers (31 miles) away.

The Japan Meteorological Agency increased the alert level for the volcano Sakurajima to 4 from 3, advising people within 3 kilometers of the crater to prepare to evacuate. It detected multiple earthquakes in the area on Saturday, the agency said on its website.

Kyushu Electric Power Co. began bringing online the No. 1 reactor at its Sendai power station on 11 August, the first nuclear facility to restart in Japan under new safety rules implemented following the 2011 Fukushima disaster.


Cotopaxi volcano in Ecuador spews ash column 5 kilometers high

© Juan Cevallos/AFP
Ashes rise above Cotopaxi volcano in the Andes mountains about 50 kilometers south of Quito, Ecuador on August 14, 2015. The Cotopaxi reaches 5,897 meters and is one of the highest volcanos.
A volcano in Ecuador spewed a column of ash five kilometers (3 miles) high on Friday, prompting officials to raise the alert level.

The ash was preceded overnight by two small explosions from the crater, the Geophysics Institute said on Twitter.

The Cotopaxi volcano stands 5,897 meters (19,500 feet) high and is located 45 kilometers (30 miles) south of the capital Quito.

The Geophysics Institute said Cotopaxi is one of the most dangerous volcanos in the world because of the large amount of snow at its peak and because nearby areas are densely populated.


Volcano erupts on island near Madagascar where possible MH370 debris found (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

A volcano erupted on Friday on a remote island in the Indian Ocean, not far from where wreckage suspected to be part of the plane from missing Malaysian flight MH370 was found, reportedly hampering work of investigators examining the debris.

Mesmerizing video and breathtaking photos taken from a bird's eye view have captured the eruption of the Piton de la Fournaise volcano in the southeastern part of Reunion Island.

Comment: Has there been an increase in volcanic activity recently? Actually, the number of volcanoes erupting right now is greater than the 20th century's YEARLY average!

See also: Russian scientist: Slowdown in Earth's rotation means we're on the verge of major climatic upheaval


Volcanic ash from Nevado del Ruiz forces two airport closures in Colombia

© AFP Photo/Santiago Osorio
The Nevado del Ruiz volcano, pictured on January 3, 2015, erupted in an ash cloud on Sunday, prompting authorities to temporarily close two airports in the area
Colombia's Nevado del Ruiz volcano erupted in an ash cloud on Sunday, prompting authorities to temporarily close two airports in the area.

The civil aeronautics agency said it closed airports at Manizales and Pereira as a precaution after the 8:30 am (1330 GMT) eruption.

This resulted in the cancellation of at least 16 flights on Sunday.

A major eruption of the Nevado del Ruiz in 1985 melted the volcano's snowcap, unleashing mudslides that wiped out the town of Armero, killing an estimated 23,000 people.

The volcano, which has been active for an estimated 150,000 years, is 220 kilometers (137 miles) west of Bogota.

Source: AFP


"Kick 'Em Jenny" undersea volcano rumbles off Grenada

© www.drgeorgepc.com
The underwater seat floor typography north of Grenada.
An active underwater volcano off Grenada's northern coast called Kick 'em Jenny was rumbling Thursday and regional disaster authorities were put on alert, though they said it posed no threat of triggering a destructive tsunami.

Since its discovery in the 1930s, Kick 'em Jenny has erupted beneath the surface of the Caribbean Sea at least 12 times, most recently in 2001. The volcano, which rises 1,300 meters (4,265 feet) above the seafloor on a steep slope of the Lesser Antilles ridge, hasn't caused any known deaths or injuries.

The Seismic Research Center at the University of the West Indies said seismic activity had increased in the volcano, which sits 8 kilometers (5 miles) north of Grenada. Recreational divers have reported seeing some "degassing" on the seafloor off Grenada's west coast as gas-rich magma bubbles.

Center researchers put the alert level at "orange," which means an eruption could take place within 24 hours. An eruption would stir up high waves and heat surrounding waters to boiling temperatures. Scientists say the volcano can also shoot hot rocks up through the water column.

Comment: There was also a strong 6.5 magnitude earthquake in nearby Barbados on July 17th: