5 phreatic eruptions at Taal volcano in the Philippines

One of the four discrete phreatic or steam-driven eruption events, observed between 9:45 a.m. and 3:22 p.m. through the Taal Volcano Network (TVN) at the VTMC (Main Crater) observation station on April 12, 2024.
© PhivolcsOne of the four discrete phreatic or steam-driven eruption events, observed between 9:45 a.m. and 3:22 p.m. through the Taal Volcano Network (TVN) at the VTMC (Main Crater) observation station on April 12, 2024.
Taal Volcano in Batangas exhibited increased volcanic activity with five phreatic eruptions occurring within a 24-hour period, according to the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs).

In its latest bulletin, Phivolcs reported that between 12 a.m. Friday and 12 a.m. Saturday, Taal experienced five phreatic eruptions, with one event lasting for 13 minutes.

A phreatic eruption, according to Phivolcs, is a steam-driven explosion that occurs when water, either below the ground or on the surface, is heated by magma, lava, hot rocks, or fresh volcanic deposits.

During the same monitoring period, a total of fifteen volcanic earthquakes, including six volcanic tremors, with durations ranging from two to four minutes each, were recorded.

Plumes reaching heights of up to 2,400 meters were observed drifting southwest and northwest.


Mount Etna: Watch volcano blowing smoke rings in rare display

Smoke rings over Mt. Etna, Sicily, Italy,
© Maria LiottaSmoke rings over Mt. Etna, Sicily, Italy, on April 5, 2024.
Take a look at these amazing smoke rings bursting out of a volcano. in the Italian region of Sicily.

They're coming from Mount Etna, the largest active volcano in Europe.

This rare smoke-show is happening because gases are being pushed really quickly through a new circular crater that's appeared on the summit.


Costa Rica's Poas volcano awakens: ashfall and gas emissions trigger green alert

Today, the Poas Volcano experienced one of its most significant ash eruptions in the past five years. As of noon, ash and gas emissions persisted, though details regarding the height of the plume remain undisclosed, visible from kilometers away. This morning's event marks a continuation of ongoing activity from the colossus that commenced on Friday, March 29. A volcanic eruption of such magnitude has not been witnessed since 2019.

Maarten de Moor, a volcanologist from the Volcanological and Seismological Observatory of Costa Rica (OVSICORI), classified this eruption as passive, devoid of violent events or the expulsion of stones or incandescent material.

Bizarro Earth

The extraordinary climate events of 2022-24

Hunga Volcano
© judithcurry.comFigure 1. The Hunga Tonga eruption from space.
The unlikely volcano, the warmest year, and the collapse of the polar vortex.

The climate events of 2022-24 have been were truly extraordinary. From an unlikely undersea volcanic eruption to the warmest year on record to the collapse of the polar vortex after three sudden stratospheric warming events. This rare convergence presents a unique learning opportunity for climatologists and climate aficionados alike, offering insights into a climate event that may not be repeated for hundreds or even thousands of years.

1. January 2022, the unlikely volcano

Never before have we witnessed an undersea volcanic eruption with a plume capable of reaching the stratosphere and depositing a large amount of vaporized water. This extraordinary event occurred in January 2022 when the Hunga Tonga volcano erupted. The conditions for such an event are rare: the volcano must be deep enough to propel enough water with the plume, but not too deep to prevent it from reaching the stratosphere. Most undersea volcanoes do not produce plumes at all, which makes Hunga Tonga's eruption all the more remarkable.

The Hunga Tonga volcano occupied a unique "sweet spot" at a depth of 150 meters the day before the eruption. In addition, the eruption itself must be exceptionally powerful for water vapor to rise into the stratosphere. The January 2022 eruption of Hunga Tonga was the most powerful in 30 years, since the 1991 eruption of Mt. Pinatubo.

Active undersea volcanoes at the appropriate depth are rare, and the likelihood of one erupting with such intensity is relatively low. We may be looking at an event that occurs once every few centuries, or maybe even once every millennium. Undoubtedly, it was an exceptionally rare event.

While the most powerful eruptions, such as Tambora in 1815, can indeed strongly influence hemispheric weather for a few years, our observations of eruptions such as Agung (1963), El Chichón (1982), and Pinatubo (1991) suggest that their effects dissipate within 3-4 years.


Marapi volcano (Western Sumatra): sudden powerful explosion showered summit area with lava bombs

The explosive eruption at the volcano persists.

A spectacular eruption took place from the summit crater early last night. At aboout 00:13 local time, a towering pillar of grey-to-black ash and glowing ejecta released from the vent could be seen via surveillance cameras in Agam.

The intense explosion sent incandescent pyroclastic material up to a considerable height, consequently showering the upper edifice with lava bombs. The ash column reached 4,400 meters altitude and drifted west-southwest.

In order to mitigate the current risk, people are advised to avoid the area within a 4.5 km radius of the Verbeek Crater.

The alert level for the volcano remains at Level III (Siaga) since 11 January.


Submarine volcanic activity bubbles up near Iwo Jima, Japan on March 16

The Japan Coast Guard captured a video of bubbly, frothy water emitting large clouds of smoke and steam. What's going on? This is a highly active region for volcanic activity and this is the result of a submarine eruption.


Mount Semeru in Indonesia erupts thrice within three hours

Mount Semeru, located on the border of the districts of Lumajang and Malang in East Java, erupted three times on Saturday within a period of three hours.

The first eruption occurred at 5:44 local time followed by a second eruption at 7:28 local time and the third eruption at 8:07 local time, Mount Semeru Observation Post officer Ghufron Alwi noted in a written report received on Saturday.

"On March 23, 2024, Mount Semeru erupted at 5:44 local time, with the height of the eruption column observed to be around 600 meters above the peak (4,276 meters above sea level)," Alwi revealed.

The volcanic ash column was seen to be white to gray in color, with thick intensity towards the north. The eruption was recorded on a seismograph, with a maximum amplitude of 22 mm and a duration of 112 seconds, he added.

The second eruption occurred at 7:28 local time, with the height of the eruption column followed by volcanic ash observed at around 700 meters above the peak (4,376 m above sea level).


Giant ancient volcano discovered on Mars

Ancient Volcano Mars
© Background: NASA / USGS; interpretation and annotations by Pascal Lee and Sourabh ShubhamThe newly discovered giant volcano on Mars is located just south of the planet’s equator, in eastern Noctis Labyrinthus, west of the Valles Marineris canyone system. The volcano sits on the eastern edge of a broad regional topographic rise called Tharsis, home to three other well-known giant volcanoes: Ascraeus Mons, Pavonis Mons, and Arsia Mons. Although more eroded and lower than these giants, the newly discovered volcano rivals the others in diameter (red dashed circle).
It's not every day that a giant volcano is discovered hiding in plain sight. By reviewing satellite imagery from many missions, scientists have spotted the remains of a colossal volcano on Mars. The volcano, provisionally named Noctis Mons, had been imaged repeatedly since the early 1970s, but extensive erosion had concealed it from view. Researchers have also spotted hints at an adjacent glacier buried underneath the volcanic slopes.

Noctis Mons is located near the Martian equator, in the eastern part of the Tharsis volcanic province, sandwiched between the vast canyons of Valles Marineris and the fractured maze-like terrain of Noctis Labyrinthus. "In fact, it is eastern Noctis Labyrinthus that is the volcano," says planetary scientist Pascal Lee (SETI Institute and the Mars Institute) who announced the finding during the 55th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in The Woodlands, Texas. The discovery adds yet another landmark to this intriguing region.


Iceland in state of emergency after volcano erupts, fourth time in 3 months

This image from video provided by Iceland Civil Defence shows lava erupting from a volcano
© Iceland Civil DefenceThis image from video provided by Iceland Civil Defence shows lava erupting from a volcano between Hagafell and Stori-Skogfell, Iceland, on March 16, 2024.
Icelandic police declared a state of emergency on Saturday as lava spewed from a new volcanic fissure on the Reykjanes Peninsula, the fourth eruption to hit the area since December.

A "volcanic eruption has started between Stori-Skogfell and Hagafell on the Reykjanes Peninsula," said a statement from the Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO). Live video images showed glowing lava and billowing smoke.

Iceland's Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management announced it had sent a helicopter to narrow down the exact location of the new fissure. The authority also said the police had declared a state of emergency due to the eruption.

According to the IMO, it occurred close to the same location as a previous eruption on February 8. Lava appeared to flow south towards the dykes built to protect the fishing village Grindavik, it said.


This Week in Volcano News: White Island volcano court case, advancing Lewotolok lava flow

Lewotolo Lava flow
Lewotolo volcano on March 3
During the last week, a lava flow advanced very close to but thankfully bypassed a village in Indonesia.

Meanwhile, in New Zealand, a major court case was settled relating to the White Island volcano disaster in 2019. And, in Japan, the submarine Fukutoku-Okanoba volcano may have just produced a brand new but small volcanic eruption.

This video will discuss these stories and list the 45 volcanoes which are currently erupting around the planet.