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Sun, 20 May 2018
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Volcanoes

Attention

Series of stronger eruptions at Stromboli volcano in Italy

Stromboli volcano
A series of stronger explosions occurred yesterday (24 April) morning at 11:05 local time from the southernmost vent of the central crater area, ejecting glowing bombs to approx 250 m and generating a dense ash plume that rose a few hundred meters.

Attention

Threat remains from 6 active volcanoes on Vanuatu islands

Ash from the eruption of the volcano on the Vanuatu island of Ambae has smothered crops.
© Penama Provincial
Ash from the eruption of the volcano on the Vanuatu island of Ambae has smothered crops.
As Vanuatu's government prepares to evacuate Ambae Island after volcanic activity intensified, volcanoes on other islands remain in a state of unrest.

Ambae's Manaro Voui crater is at alert level three of five, posing a threat to the health of the island's 11,000 inhabitants, who are being encouraged by the government to evacuate.

Nearby, a level two alert is in place on Ambrym, according to the Geohazards Department, with exclusion zones around the erupting Benbow and Marum craters.

A geohazards analyst Melinda Haru said the main threat for the people of Ambrym outside those zones was gas emitted by the volcano.

Sherlock

Aerial photography reveals unexplained holes appearing in Arctic sea ice

Curious Circles in Arctic Sea Ice
© NASA photograph by John Sonntag/Operation IceBridge.
NASA's Operation IceBridge - the airborne mission flown annually over both polar regions-is now in its tenth year making flights over the Arctic. That's a lot of flight hours spent mapping the region's land ice and sea ice. But on April 14, 2018, IceBridge mission scientist John Sonntag spotted something he had never seen before.

Sonntag snapped this photograph from the window of the P-3 research plane while flying over the eastern Beaufort Sea. At the time, the aircraft's location was 69.71° North and 138.22° West, about 50 miles northwest of Canada's Mackenzie River Delta. "We saw these sorta-circular features only for a few minutes today," Sonntag wrote from the field. "I don't recall seeing this sort of thing elsewhere."

The features are more of a curiosity than anything else. The main purpose of the flight that day was to make observations of sea ice in an area that lacked coverage by the mission prior to 2013. Still, the image sparked a fair amount of intrigue, so we set out to see what we could learn. That's not always easy based on a photograph or satellite image alone, so the following ideas are speculation.

Comment: So, this aerial photography has been going on for 10 years, it's the first time these scientists have seen them, and there are no other examples of holes like this?

Considering the activity going on in the depths of our planet, many signs we're seeing on the surface, though this may turn out to be seals, there are other, more worrying, theories as to what could be causing this, such as heat coming from below:


Attention

Volcano erupts for first time in 250 years in Japan

PICTURES
A volcano in southern Japan erupted for the first time in 250 years on Thursday, spewing steam and ash hundreds of metres into the air, as authorities warned locals not to approach the mountain.

"There is a possibility that (Mount Io) will become more active," said Makoto Saito, an official from the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA), confirming the eruption.

In a televised press conference, he warned residents in the area to stay away from the mountain, part of the Mount Kirishima group of volcanoes, as major ash deposits spread from the crater.

It was the first eruption of the mountain since 1768, the JMA said.


Comment: A different report adds that one person was killed and that authorities have banned access to the peak.


Attention

New activity notice issued for Kilauea volcano in Hawaii

USGS: Lava within the west pit at Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō has continued to rise since HVO’s previous overflight (March 27) and has formed a perched lava pond (center) contained within a levee.

USGS: Lava within the west pit at Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō has continued to rise since HVO’s previous overflight (March 27) and has formed a perched lava pond (center) contained within a levee.
Observations suggest that the magma system beneath Puʻu ʻŌʻō has become increasingly pressurized. A new vent could form at any time.

On Tuesday, scientists issued a new Volcanic Activity Notice for Kilauea on Hawaii Island.

According to the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, observations suggest that the magma system beneath Puʻu ʻŌʻō has become increasingly pressurized. If this activity continues, USGS says, a new vent could form at any time. The new vent could be on the Puʻu ʻŌʻō cone, or along adjacent areas of the East Rift Zone.


Attention

Volcano in Vanuatu spills heavy ash as acid rain falls from the sky, evacuation fears for 11,000 residents

A state of emergency has been declared for Vanuatu's Ambae Island as a volcano continues to spill heavy ash

A state of emergency has been declared for Vanuatu's Ambae Island as a volcano continues to spill heavy ash
A state of emergency has been declared for Vanuatu's Ambae Island as a volcano continues to spill thick heavy ash.

Thousands of residents who call the island home have been warned they may need to evacuate after up to 1cm of ash has fallen in some areas north of the island on Tuesday night.

The situation was described as 'becoming critical in some areas' and national EMT coordinator Dr Basil Leodoro told Vanuatu Daily Post they had 'received reports of houses collapsing due to the weight of the ash.'

Attention

Popocatepetl volcano in Mexico erupts and sends huge plume of smoke and flaming debris into the sky

The smoke begins to turn a dark red colour as it continues spewing out of the volcano

The smoke begins to turn a dark red colour as it continues spewing out of the volcano
This is the incredible moment a volcano explodes into life sending a huge cloud of smoke into the sky and flaming debris flying.

The Popocatepetl volcano, located between the central Mexican states of Morelos, Puebla and Mexico, burst into life.

In the video, a huge plume of black smoke can be seen coming out from the volcano's crater.


Fire

Is the Pacific Ring of Fire becoming more active?

Sinabung eruption February 2018
© Agence France -Presse/Anto Sembiring
Indonesian schoolchildren walk together at Sipandak elementary school in Tiga Pancur village in Karo, North Sumatra on Feb. 19, 2018, as thick volcanic ash from Mount Sinabung volcano rises into the air following another eruption. Sinabung roared back to life in 2010 for the first time in 400 years and has remained highly active since.
Recent eruptions prompt calls for better building standards and evacuation plans in Southeast Asia

When Bali's Mount Agung started rumbling last September, authorities on the Indonesian resort island -- mindful of the destruction the 3,000-meter volcano had caused in 1963 -- began warning residents to evacuate. Tremors of varying intensity continued until Nov. 21, when it finally began to erupt, forcing as many as 140,000 people to seek refuge. More than four months later, it still hasn't stopped.

On Jan. 23, Mount Kusatsu-Shirane, about 150km northwest of Tokyo, astounded the Japan Meteorological Agency when it suddenly erupted 2km from one of 50 areas around the country kept under constant video surveillance. Falling debris killed a member of the Ground Self-Defense Force who was skiing nearby and injured five others.

At much the same time, Mount Mayon in the Philippines began spewing ash and lava, displacing more than 56,000 people.

Then, in mid-February, Mount Sinabung in Sumatra, Indonesia, blew spectacularly, sending billowing pillars of steam and superheated ash over 7km into the air. People fled, and schoolchildren ran home wailing.

Sinabung's eruption was followed in late February by a magnitude-7.5 earthquake in Papua New Guinea, its worst in a century. Earlier in the month, a magnitude-6.4 quake rocked Taiwan's Hualien County, tilting buildings and killing 17.

Comment: Slowdown in Earth's rotation means we're on the verge of major climatic upheaval


Attention

Another major eruption at Mount Sinabung, Indonesia

Mount Sinabung eruption
© AFP
Mount Sinabung erupted on April 6, 2018, spewing a massive volcanic ash column up to 5km into the air and sending hot clouds as far as 3.5km in different directions.
Indonesia's Mount Sinabung in North Sumatra, erupted on Friday (April 6) spewing a massive volcanic ash column up to 5km into the air and sending hot clouds as far as 3.5km in different directions.

The eruption took place at 4:07 pm (5:07 pm Singapore time), shocking local residents living around the volcano. Mt Sinabung had been relatively quiet for the past month.

"There was no eruption recorded in the past month. This quiet condition has been disrupted following the big eruption today," Pelin Depari, resident of Gurukinayan village said.


Comment: This is the second major eruption of this volcano within 2 months. See also:


Cloud Lightning

Footage shows Japan's Shinmoedake explode with volcanic lightning

Volcanic lightning at Shinmoedake, Japan
© Japan News-Yomiuri
Volcanic lightning at Shinmoedake is seen from Kirishima, Kagoshima Prefecture, on Thursday morning in Japan.
An explosive eruption occurred early Thursday morning at Shinmoedake, a volcano in the Kirishima mountain range straddling Miyazaki and Kagoshima prefectures, the Japan Meteorological Agency said the same day.

Volcanic smoke from the 1,421-meter Shinmoedake reached as high as 5,000 meters above the crater, the highest since a series of eruptions began on March 1. Minor pyroclastic flows poured in the direction of Takaharu, Miyazaki Prefecture, which is located southeast of the crater, some spreading about 800 meters from the crater.

This was the first time since March 25 that both an explosive eruption and pyroclastic flows were observed. The two prefectural governments said they had not received any reports of injuries or damage to buildings caused by the eruption. The agency said there is no need for immediate evacuation.


The Yomiuri Shimbun