Activity for the week of 9 March-15 March 2005
The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report is a cooperative project between the Smithsonian's Global Volcanism Program and the US Geological Survey's Volcano Hazards Program. Updated by 2300 UTC every Wednesday, notices of volcanic activity posted on these pages are preliminary and subject to change as events are studied in more detail. This is not a comprehensive list of all of Earth's volcanoes erupting during the week, but rather a summary of activity at volcanoes that meet criteria discussed in detail in the "Criteria and Disclaimers" section. Carefully reviewed, detailed reports on various volcanoes are published monthly in the Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network.
New Activity / Unrest
| Paramushir Island (Russia)
| 50.324°N, 155.461°E
| Elevation 1781 m
Increased volcanic activity at Chikurachki on 12 March led KVERT to raise the Concern Color Code from Green to Yellow. Prior to the increase in Concern Color Code, on 1 March observers in Severo-Kurilsk (~70 km NE of Chikurachki) saw a gas-and-steam plume rise ~400 m above the volcano. On 12 March MODIS satellite imagery showed an ash plume extending NNW from the volcano. Chikurachki last erupted during April to June 2003.
Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)
| 19.514°N, 103.62°W
| Elevation 3850 m
An eruption at Colima on 10 March at 0810 produced pyroclastic flows that traveled up to 3 km down the volcano's flanks in all directions. In addition, an E-drifting ash cloud was generated that rose to a height of ~2 km above the crater. Ash fell in and near the cities of Guzmán and Jalisco. On 13 March at 1528 a large explosion produced a pyroclastic flow down several ravines: El Muerto, Montegrande, San Antonio, and the eastern part of El Cordobán. According to the Mexico City MWO, an ash plume rose to ~5 km above the crater. Ash and rock fragments fell in the towns of Mazos and Jalisco, ~12.5 km NE of the volcano.
Sources: Centro Universitario de Estudios e Investigaciones de Vulcanologia - Universidad de Colima, Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Hawaiian Islands (USA)
| 19.421°N, 155.287°W
| Elevation 1222 m
On 15 March only small areas of surface lava flows at Kilauea were visible on the Pulama pali fault scarp, and the amount of lava in the three branches of the PKK lava flow continued to decrease. Lava continued to enter the ocean at the Ka`ili`ili and East Lae`apuki ocean entries. Only a few small earthquakes occurred below the volcano's S flank. The level of volcanic tremor was low at the summit and moderate at Pu`u `O`o. Small amounts of deflation occurred at Kilauea's summit and Pu`u `O`o.
Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)
| Papua New Guinea
| 4.08°S, 145.037°E
| Elevation 1807 m
On 15 March, a thin plume from Manam was visible on satellite imagery. The Alert Level at Manam remained at 2.
Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)
| 19.023°N, 98.622°W
| Elevation 5393 m
During 9-15 March, Popocatépetl occasionally emitted steam, gas, and small amounts of ash. An ash emission on 9 March at 1304 produced a plume that rose to ~500 m above the summit crater and drifted E. Ash fell in the towns of Huejotzingo (~30 km NE of the volcano) and Puebla (~45 km E). The Alert Level at Popocatépetl remained at Yellow Phase I.
Source: Centro Nacional de Prevencion de Desastres (CENAPRED)
| New Britain (Papua New Guinea)
| 4.271°S, 152.203°E
| Elevation 688 m
Low-level eruptions continued at Rabaul caldera's active Tavurvur cone during 9-15 March. According to the Darwin VAAC, ash may affect Tokua airport, depending on the prevailing wind direction.
Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)
| 16.72°N, 62.18°W
| Elevation 915 m
Seismicity remained at low levels at Soufrière Hills during 4-11 March. The sulfur-dioxide flux remained around the same level as the previous week, with an average of 695 metric tons recorded daily. During the week, a strong sulfurous smell was noticed across the northern part of Montserrat. MVO attributed this to a deviation from the normal prevailing wind direction.
Source: Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO)
| United States
| 46.2°N, 122.18°W
| Elevation 2549 m
A small but significant explosion that occurred at St Helens on 8 March at 1725 produced a fine dusting of ash in Ellensberg, Yakima, and Toppenish, Washington during 1900-2100. By 0200 on 9 March, the leading edge of the faint, diffuse plume had reached western Montana. Scientists found that St. Helens' lava dome was intact after the explosion and that ballistics up to ~1 m in diameter were hurled as far as the northern flank of the old lava dome. No ballistics were found along, or beyond the crater rim. The source of the explosion was from the NNW side of the new lava dome and was very near the source of the 1 October 2004 and 16 January 2005 explosions.
After the 8 March explosion, St. Helens only emitted steam, and seismicity returned to a level similar to that during the several hours prior to the explosion. Gas emissions were very low, essentially unchanged from those measured in late February. During 9-15 March, St. Helens remained at Volcano Advisory (Alert Level 2); aviation color code Orange.
Source: US Geological Survey Cascades Volcano Observatory (CVO)
| Ryukyu Islands (Japan)
| 29.638°N, 129.714°E
| Elevation 796 m
Based on information from JMA, the Tokyo VAAC reported that an explosion at Suwanose-jima on 9 March produced an ash plume to a height of ~1.8 km a.s.l.
Source: Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| 1.467°S, 78.442°W
| Elevation 5023 m
During 9-14 March, volcanic and seismic activity were at relatively low levels at Tungurahua. Low-energy gas-and-steam plumes were emitted, and long-period earthquakes and episodes of tremor were recorded.
Source: Instituto Geofísico-Escuela Politécnica Nacional (IG)
| New Britain (Papua New Guinea)
| 5.05°S, 151.33°E
| Elevation 2334 m
RVO advised the Darwin VAAC that volcanic activity was relatively low at Ulawun on 8 March, but seismicity was increasing. On 15 March a faint plume was visible on satellite imagery
Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)
News Feeds and Google Placemarks
The RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed is identical to the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report minus some features including the header information (latitude and longitude and summit elevation), the Geologic Summary, and a link to the volcano's page from the Global Volcanism Program. Each volcano report includes a link from the volcano's name back to the more complete information in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report on the Smithsonian website.
The CAP (Common Alerting Protocol) feeds are XML files specifically formatted for disaster management. They are similar in content to the RSS feed, but contain no active links.
A Google Earth network link for the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report can be loaded into the free Google Earth software, and in turn will load placemarks for volcanoes in the current weekly report. Placemark balloons include the volcano name, report date, report text, sources, and links back to the GVP volcano page for that volcano and to the complete Weekly Report for that week.
Criteria & Disclaimers
The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report does not necessarily include all volcanic activity that occurred on Earth during the week. More than a dozen volcanoes globally have displayed more-or-less continuous eruptive activity for decades or longer, and such routine activity is typically not reported here. Moreover, Earth's sea-floor volcanism is seldom reported even though in theory it represents the single most prolific source of erupted material. The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report summarizes volcanic activity that meets one or more of the following criteria:
- A volcano observatory raises or lowers the alert level at the volcano.
- A volcanic ash advisory has been released by a volcanic ash advisory center (VAAC) stating that an ash cloud has been produced from the volcano.
- A verifiable news report of new activity or a change in activity at the volcano has been issued.
- Observers have reported a significant change in volcanic activity. Such activity can include, but is not restricted to, pyroclastic flows, lahars, lava flows, dome collapse, or increased unrest.
Volcanoes are included in the "New Activity/Unrest" section of the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report if the activity occurs after at least 3 months of quiescence. Once a volcano is included in the "New Activity/Unrest" section, updates will remain in that section unless the activity continues for more than 1 month without escalating, after which time updates will be listed in the "Continuing Activity" section. Volcanoes are also included in the "New Activity/Unrest" section if the volcano is undergoing a period of relatively high unrest, or increasing unrest. This is commonly equal to Alert Level Orange on a scale of Green, Yellow, Orange, Red, where Red is the highest alert. Or alert level 3 on a scale of 1-4 or 1-5.
It is important to note that volcanic activity meeting one or more of these criteria may occur during the week, but may not be included in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report because we did not receive a report.
1. The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report is intended to provide timely information about global volcanism on a weekly basis. Consequently, the report is generated rapidly by summarizing volcanic reports from various sources, with little time for fact checking. The accuracy of the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report is dependent upon the quality of the volcanic activity reports we receive. Reports published in the Bulletin of the Global Volcanism Network are monthly, and more carefully reviewed, although all of the volcanoes discussed in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report are not necessarily reported in the Bulletin. Because of our emphasis on rapid reporting on the web we have avoided diacritical marks. Reports are updated on the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report web page as they are received, therefore information may be included regarding events that occurred before the current report period.
2. Rapidly developing events lead to coverage that is often fragmentary. Volcanoes, their eruptions, and their plumes and associated atmospheric effects are complex phenomena that may require months to years of data analysis in order to create a comprehensive summary and interpretation of events.
3. Preliminary accounts sometimes contain exaggerations and "false alarms," and accordingly, this report may include some events ultimately found to be erroneous or misleading.
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RSS and CAP Feeds
An RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feed for the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report first made available on 5 March 2008 can be utilized with the aid of various free downloadable readers. The report content of the news feed is identical to the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report minus some features including the header information (latitude and longitude and summit elevation), the Geologic Summary, and a link to the volcano's page from the Global Volcanism Program. Each volcano report includes a link from the volcano's name back to the more complete information in the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report on the Smithsonian website. On 12 March 2009, GeoRSS tags were added so that the latitude and longitude for each volcano could be included with the feed.
At the end of each individual report is a list of the sources used. We would like to emphasize that the World Organization of Volcano Observatories (WOVO) website (http://www.wovo.org/) lists the regional volcano observatories that have the most authoritative data for many of these events.
CAP (Common Alerting Protocol) feeds are XML files specifically formatted for disaster management.
Google Earth Placemarks
A Google Earth network link for the Weekly Volcanic Activity Report was first made available on 1 April 2009. This file can be loaded into the free Google Earth software, and in turn will load placemarks for volcanoes in the current weekly report. Placemark balloons include the volcano name, report date, report text, sources, and links back to the GVP volcano page for that volcano and to the complete Weekly Report for that week.