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Smithsonian / USGS Weekly Volcanic Activity Report

You are currently viewing Archived reports for the week of 30 April-6 May 2008.


















 Activity for the week of 30 April-6 May 2008

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.

Name Location Activity
Balbi Bougainville (Papua New Guinea) New
Chaiten Chile New
Ubinas Peru New

Aira Kyushu (Japan) Ongoing
Batu Tara Komba Island (Indonesia) Ongoing
Karymsky Eastern Kamchatka (Russia) Ongoing
Kilauea Hawaiian Islands (USA) Ongoing
Nevado del Huila Colombia Ongoing
Rabaul New Britain (Papua New Guinea) Ongoing
Sheveluch Central Kamchatka (Russia) Ongoing
Soufriere Hills Montserrat Ongoing
Tungurahua Ecuador Ongoing
Veniaminof United States Ongoing


New Activity / Unrest


Volcano index photo  Balbi  | Bougainville (Papua New Guinea)  | 5.92°S, 154.98°E  | Elevation 2715 m

Based on information from RVO, the Darwin VAAC reported that Balbi erupted on 7 May. Ash was not detected on satellite imagery. [Correction: RVO later confirmed that Balbi did not erupt on 7 May and attributed the reports to thunderstorm activity.]

Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Chaiten  | Chile  | 42.833°S, 72.646°W  | Elevation 1122 m

SERNAGEOMIN reported that Chaitén erupted on 2 May, following increased seismicity in the region the day before. A pulsating white to gray ash plume rose to an estimated altitude greater than 21 km (68,900 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SSE. The Alert Level was raised to Red. Based on observations of satellite imagery and pilot reports, the Buenos Aires VAAC reported an ash plume at altitudes of 13.7-16.8 km (45,000-55,000 ft) a.s.l. drifted NE. According to news articles, Chile's government declared a state of emergency on 2 May and several hundred people were evacuated from the town of Chaitén (10 km SE). The eruption was initially thought to have been from Minchinmávida, about 17 km ENE, which last erupted in 1835.

According to news sources, ashfall was reported during 2-6 May both locally and up to hundreds of kilometers away, affecting water supplies and roads. Based on observations of satellite imagery and pilot reports, the Buenos Aires VAAC reported that during 3-6 May ash plume rose to altitudes of 7-10.7 km (23,000-35,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SE, E, W, and NE. News sources indicated that about 4,000-5,000 people were evacuated from the town of Chaitén and surrounding areas as the eruption continued. On 5 May, ONEMI (Oficina Nacional de Emergencia - Ministerio del Interior) reported that evacuations took place in Futaleufú, about 65 km ESE, where about 30 cm of ash accumulated. One elderly person died during the evacuation efforts. On 6 May, ONEMI and SERNAGEOMIN reported that the eruption became more forceful and generated a wider and darker gray ash plume to an estimated altitude of 30 km (98,400 ft) a.s.l. All remaining people in Chaitén were ordered to evacuate, as well as anyone within 50 km of the volcano.

Sources: Agence France-Presse (AFP), Associated Press, Buenos Aires Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC), Oficina Nacional de Emergencia-Ministerio del Interior (ONEMI), Servicio Nacional de Geología y Minería (SERNAGEOMIN)



Volcano index photo  Ubinas  | Peru  | 16.355°S, 70.903°W  | Elevation 5672 m

Based on SIGMET reports and observations of satellite imagery, the Buenos Aires VAAC reported that ash plumes from Ubinas rose to altitudes of 5.5-9.1 km (18,000-30,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted NE, E, and SE during 30 April-3 May. According to news articles, an ash-and-gas plume rose to an altitude of 6.2 km (20,300 ft) a.s.l. on 2 May. Ashfall was reported in local communities and dozens of residents of Querapi, about 4.5 km SE, were evacuated.

Sources: Associated Press, Buenos Aires Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC), NBC News



Ongoing Activity


Volcano index photo  Aira  | Kyushu (Japan)  | 31.593°N, 130.657°E  | Elevation 1117 m

Based on information from JMA and observations of satellite imagery, the Tokyo VAAC reported that during 6-7 May eruption plumes from Sakura-jima rose to altitudes of 2.4-3.4 km (8,000-11,000 ft) a.s.l. The plumes drifted S.

Source: Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Batu Tara  | Komba Island (Indonesia)  | 7.791°S, 123.585°E  | Elevation 633 m

Based on observations of satellite imagery, the Darwin VAAC reported that low-level plumes from Batu Tara rose to an altitude of 3 km (10,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted NW on 3 and 7 May.

Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Karymsky  | Eastern Kamchatka (Russia)  | 54.049°N, 159.443°E  | Elevation 1513 m

KVERT reported that seismic activity at Karymsky was at background levels during 25 April-2 May. Possible activity was characterized by gas-and-ash plumes that rose to altitudes of 2-2.5 km (6,600-8,200 ft) a.s.l. Based on seismic interpretation, a gas-and-ash explosion may have occurred on 26 April. Observations of satellite imagery revealed that a thermal anomaly was present in the crater on 25, 27, and 28 April. Based on airport data and information from KEMSD, the Tokyo VAAC reported that an eruption plume rose to altitudes of 3.7 km (10,000-17,000 ft) a.s.l. during 6-7 May. Ash was not detected on satellite imagery. The Level of Concern Color Code remained at Orange.

Sources: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT), Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Kilauea  | Hawaiian Islands (USA)  | 19.421°N, 155.287°W  | Elevation 1222 m

Based on visual observations from HVO and National Park Service (NPS) crews and web camera views, HVO reported that during 30 April-6 May lava flowed SE through a lava tube system underneath Kilauea's Thanksgiving Eve Breakout (TEB) and rootless shield complex to the Waikupanaha ocean entry. On 4 May, lava flows from breakouts on the pali reached the coastal plain. Kilauea summit earthquakes were located beneath the Halema'uma'u crater, along the S-flank faults, and along the SW and E rift zones. The eruption from the vent in Halema'uma'u Crater continued to produce white plumes with minor ash content that drifted mainly SW. During most nights incandescence was seen at the base of the plume. Seismic tremor was elevated. The sulfur dioxide emission rate was high and fluctuated between 540 and 1,250 tonnes per day during 30 April-5 May. The background rate was 150-200 tonnes per day.

Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)



Volcano index photo  Nevado del Huila  | Colombia  | 2.93°N, 76.03°W  | Elevation 5364 m

INGEOMINAS reported that no significant morphological changes to the summit of Nevado del Huila were noted during an overflight on 6 May, although the NE and NW flanks could not be directly observed. Fumarolic plumes drifted NW. The Alert Level was lowered to Yellow (on a 4-color scale where Yellow is the second lowest).

Source: Servicio Geológico Colombiano (SGC)



Volcano index photo  Rabaul  | New Britain (Papua New Guinea)  | 4.271°S, 152.203°E  | Elevation 688 m

RVO reported that during 30 April-7 May ash plumes from multiple places inside Rabaul caldera's Tavurvur cone rose to altitudes of 1.2-2.2 km (3,900-7,200 ft) a.s.l. and drifted N, E, and SE. Intermittent roaring and rumbling noises and occasional explosions were reported. Ashfall was reported in nearby areas. Ash in Rabaul Town (3-5 km NW) suspended by wind and traffic was problematic. During 5-7 May, incandescent tephra was occasionally visible at night.

Source: Rabaul Volcano Observatory (RVO)



Volcano index photo  Sheveluch  | Central Kamchatka (Russia)  | 56.653°N, 161.36°E  | Elevation 3283 m

KVERT reported that seismic activity at Shiveluch was at background levels during 25 April-2 May. Observations of satellite imagery revealed that a thermal anomaly was present in the crater during 27, 28, and 30 April, and 1 May. On 28 April, ash deposits extending about 10 km NW were observed on satellite imagery and possible gas-and-ash explosions were detected by the seismic network. The Level of Concern Color Code remained at Orange.

Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)



Volcano index photo  Soufriere Hills  | Montserrat  | 16.72°N, 62.18°W  | Elevation 915 m

MVO reported that during 25 April-2 May the level of volcano-tectonic earthquakes at Soufrière Hills increased and was the highest since February 2006. Degassing from a vent above Gages Wall was audible in the St. George's Hill area to the NW. Steaming from the area above Tyre's Ghaut to the NW was visible. The Alert Level remained elevated at 4 (on a scale of 0-5).

Source: Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO)



Volcano index photo  Tungurahua  | Ecuador  | 1.467°S, 78.442°W  | Elevation 5023 m

The IG reported that although visual observations were occasionally limited due to cloud cover during 29 April-6 May, ash-and-steam plumes from Tungurahua were spotted and generally rose to altitudes of 5.5-7 km (18,000-23,000 ft) a.s.l. Ashfall was reported in areas to the SW and W during 29 April-1 May and on 4 May. On 30 April, explosions produced steam-and-ash plumes to altitudes of 9-10 km (29,500-32,800 ft) a.s.l. Incandescence at the summit was visible and incandescent blocks rolled down the flanks. Roaring noises were audible. On 1 May, explosions were accompanied by "cannon shots" and intense incandescence at the summit. Windows vibrated in areas 6 km NE. Incandescent blocks rolled 1 km down the flanks. On 3 May, a small lahar descended the W flank.

Source: Instituto Geofísico-Escuela Politécnica Nacional (IG)



Volcano index photo  Veniaminof  | United States  | 56.17°N, 159.38°W  | Elevation 2507 m

AVO reported on 3 May that the Volcanic Alert Level for Veniaminof was lowered to Normal and the Aviation Color Code was lowered to Green due to the absence of ash emissions and elevated surface temperatures. Seismicity was still above past background levels, but the rate and intensity had declined over the previous several weeks.

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)



Weekly Reports Archive

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Agung Fourpeaked Little Sitkin San Cristobal
Ahyi Fuego Llaima San Miguel
Aira Fujisan Loihi San Vicente
Akan Fukutoku-Oka-no-Ba Lokon-Empung Sangay
Alaid Galeras Lopevi Sangeang Api
Alu-Dalafilla Galunggung Machin Santa Ana
Ambae Gamalama Makian Santa Maria
Ambang Gamkonora Makushin Sarigan
Ambrym Gaua Maly Semyachik Sarychev Peak
Anatahan Gorely Manam Saunders
Antuco Great Sitkin Manda Hararo Semeru
Apoyeque Grimsvotn Marapi Semisopochnoi
Arenal Guagua Pichincha Maroa Seulawah Agam
Asamayama Guallatiri Martin Sheveluch
Askja Guntur Masaya Shishaldin
Asosan Hachijojima Mauna Loa Simbo
Augustine Hakoneyama Mayon Sinabung
Avachinsky Heard McDonald Islands Sinarka
Awu Hekla Melimoyu Siple
Axial Seamount Hierro Merapi Sirung
Azul, Cerro Hokkaido-Komagatake Metis Shoal Slamet
Azumayama Home Reef Misti, El Soputan
Bagana Hood Miyakejima Sorikmarapi
Balbi Hudson, Cerro Momotombo Sotara
Bamus Huila, Nevado del Monowai Soufriere Hills
Banda Api Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai Montagu Island Soufriere St. Vincent
Bardarbunga Ibu Moyorodake [Medvezhia] South Sarigan Seamount
Barren Island Ijen Mutnovsky Spurr
Batur Iliamna Myojinsho St. Helens
Bezymianny Iliwerung Nabro Stromboli
Bogoslof Inielika Negra, Sierra Sulu Range
Brava Ioto Negro, Cerro Sumbing
Bristol Island Iya Nightingale Island Sundoro
Bulusan Izu-Torishima Nishinoshima Suretamatai
Calbuco Jackson Segment Nisyros Suwanosejima
Callaqui Kaba Novarupta Taal
Cameroon Kadovar NW Rota-1 Tair, Jebel at
Campi Flegrei del Mar di Sicilia Kambalny Nyamuragira Takawangha
Cayambe Kanaga Nyiragongo Talang
Cereme Kanlaon Okataina Tambora
Chachadake [Tiatia] Karangetang Okmok Tanaga
Chaiten Karkar Ontakesan Tandikat-Singgalang
Chiginagak Karthala Oraefajokull Tangkoko-Duasudara
Chikurachki Karymsky Osorno Tangkubanparahu
Chiles-Cerro Negro Kasatochi Pacaya Tara, Batu
Chillan, Nevados de Katla Pagan Telica
Chirinkotan Kavachi Palena Volcanic Group Tenerife
Chirpoi Kelimutu Paluweh Tengger Caldera
Cleveland Kelut Panarea Three Sisters
Colima Kerinci Papandayan Tinakula
Colo Ketoi Parker Tofua
Concepcion Kharimkotan Pavlof Tokachidake
Copahue Kick 'em Jenny Peuet Sague Tolbachik
Cotopaxi Kikai Pinatubo Toliman
Cuicocha Kilauea Planchon-Peteroa Tongariro
Cumbal Kirishimayama Poas Tungurahua
Dabbahu Kizimen Popocatepetl Turrialba
Dempo Klyuchevskoy Puyehue-Cordon Caulle Ubinas
Descabezado Grande Kolokol Group Rabaul Ulawun
Dieng Volcanic Complex Korovin Ranakah Unknown Source
Dukono Koryaksky Raoul Island Unnamed
Ebeko Krakatau Rasshua Veniaminof
Ebulobo Krummel-Garbuna-Welcker Raung Villarrica
Egon Kuchinoerabujima Redoubt West Mata
Ekarma Kusatsu-Shiranesan Reventador White Island
Epi Kverkfjoll Rincon de la Vieja Witori
Erebus Lamington Rinjani Wolf
Erta Ale Lamongan Ritter Island Yasur
Etna Langila Rotorua Zaozan
Etorofu-Yakeyama [Grozny Group] Lanin Ruang Zavodovski
Eyjafjallajokull Lascar Ruapehu Zhupanovsky
Fernandina Lengai, Ol Doinyo Ruiz, Nevado del Zubair Group
Fogo Leroboleng Sabancaya
Fonualei Lewotobi Sakar
Fournaise, Piton de la Lewotolo Salak
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 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

Criteria

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.


Disclaimers

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.

4. Many news agencies do not archive the articles they post on the Internet, and therefore the links to some sources may not be active. To obtain information about the cited articles that are no longer available on the Internet contact the source.

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Information presented on this website is considered public information and may be distributed or copied. Use of appropriate byline/photo/image credit is requested. We strongly recommend that USGS data be acquired directly from a USGS server and not through other sources that may change the data in some way. While USGS makes every effort to provide accurate and complete information, various data such as names, telephone numbers, etc. may change prior to updating. USGS welcomes suggestions on how to improve our home page and correct errors. USGS provides no warranty, expressed or implied, as to the accuracy, reliability or completeness of furnished data.

Some of the documents on this server may contain live references (or pointers) to information created and maintained by other organizations. Please note that USGS does not control and cannot guarantee the relevance, timeliness, or accuracy of these outside materials.

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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.

 Acronyms and Abbreviations

a.s.l. - above sea level

AVO - Alaska Volcano Observatory

AVHRR - Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer

CENAPRED - Centro Nacionale de Prevencion de Desastres (México)

CONRED - Coordinadora Nacional para la Reducción de Desastres

COSPEC - Correlation Spectrometer

CVGHM (formerly VSI) - Center of Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation

CVO - Cascades Volcano Observatory (USGS)

GMS - Geostationary Meteorological Satellite

GOES - Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite

GVO - Goma Volcano Observatory

GVP - Global Volcanism Program (Smithsonian Institution)

HVO - Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (USGS)

ICE - Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad (Costa Rica)

IG - Instituto Geofísico (Ecuador)

IGNS - Institute of Geological and Nuclear Sciences (New Zealand) - now GNS Science

INETER - Instituto Nicaragüense de Estudios Territoriales (Nicaragua)

INGEMMET - Instituto Geológical Minero y Metalúrgico (Peru)

INGEOMINAS - Instituto Colombiano de Geología y Minería (Colombia)

INGV-CT - Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia - Sezione di Catania (Italy)

INSIVUMEH - Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia e Hidrologia (Guatemala)

IRD - Institut de Recherche pour le Développement (France)

JMA - Japanese Meteorological Agency

KEMSD - Kamchatkan Experimental and Methodical Seismilogical Department

KVERT - Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team

M - magnitude

METEOSAT - Meteorological Satellite

MEVO - Mount Erebus Volcano Observatory

MODIS - Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer

MVO - Montserrat Volcano Observatory

MWO - Meteorological Watch Office

NEIC - National Earthquake Information Center

NIED - National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Prevention (Japan)

NOAA - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

NOTAM - Notice to Airmen

OVDAS - Observatorio Volcanologico de los Andes del Sur (Chile)

OFDA - Office of US Foreign Disaster Assistance

ONEMI - Oficina Nacional de Emergencia - Ministerio del Interior (Chile)

OVPDLF - Observatoire Volcanologique du Piton de la Fournaise (France)

OVSICORI-UNA - Observatorio Vulcanologico y Sismologico de Costa Rica, Universidad Nacional (Costa Rica)

PHIVOLCS - Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Philippines)

RSAM - Real-time Seismic Amplitude Measurement

RVO - Rabaul Volcano Observatory

SERNAGEOMIN - Servicio Nacional de Geologia y Mineria (Chile)

SIGMET - Significant Meteorological Information

SNET - Servicio Nacional de Estudios Territoriales (El Salvador)

SVERT - Sakhalin Volcanic Eruption Response Team (Russia)

USAID - US Agency for International Development

USGS - United States Geological Survey

UTC - Coordinated Universal Time

VAAC - Volcanic Ash Advisory Center

VAFTAD - Volcanic Ash Forecast Transport And Dispersion

VDAP - Volcano Disaster Assistance Program (USGS)

VHP - Volcano Hazards Program (USGS)

VRC - Volcano Research Center (Japan)