Report on Soufriere Guadeloupe (France) — December 1976
Natural Science Event Bulletin, vol. 1, no. 15 (December 1976)
Managing Editor: David Squires.
Soufriere Guadeloupe (France) Mild steaming with an occasional weak phreatic explosion
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 1976. Report on Soufriere Guadeloupe (France). In: Squires, D (ed.), Natural Science Event Bulletin, 1:15. Smithsonian Institution. http://dx.doi.org/10.5479/si.GVP.NSEB197612-360060.
16.044°N, 61.664°W; summit elev. 1467 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
Activity has declined to mild steaming with an occasional weak phreatic explosion.
Geologic Background. La Soufrière de la Guadeloupe volcano occupies the southern end of Basse-Terre, the western half of the butterfly-shaped island of Guadeloupe. Construction of the Grand Découverte volcano about 0.2 million years ago (Ma) was followed by caldera formation after a plinian eruption about 0.1 Ma, and then by construction of the Carmichaël volcano within the caldera. Two episodes of edifice collapse and associated large debris avalanches formed the Carmichaël and Amic craters about 11,500 and 3100 years ago, respectively. The presently active La Soufrière volcano subsequently grew within the Amic crater. The summit consists of a flat-topped lava dome, and several other domes occur on the southern flanks. Most historical eruptions have originated from NW-SE-trending fissure systems that cut across the summit and upper flanks. A relatively minor phreatic eruption in 1976-77 caused severe economic disruption when Basse-Terre, the island's capital city, which lies immediately below the volcano, was evacuated.
Information Contacts: J. Gautheyrou, ORSTOM.