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Smithsonian / USGS Weekly Volcanic Activity Report

New Activity / Highlights


















 Activity for the week of 5 December-11 December 2018

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
Manam Papua New Guinea New
Mayon Luzon (Philippines) New

Aira Kyushu (Japan) Ongoing
Copahue Central Chile-Argentina border Ongoing
Dukono Halmahera (Indonesia) Ongoing
Ebeko Paramushir Island (Russia) Ongoing
Etna Sicily (Italy) Ongoing
Ibu Halmahera (Indonesia) Ongoing
Kilauea Hawaiian Islands (USA) Ongoing
Krakatau Indonesia Ongoing
Merapi Central Java (Indonesia) Ongoing
Nevados de Chillan Chile Ongoing
Sabancaya Peru Ongoing
Sheveluch Central Kamchatka (Russia) Ongoing
Turrialba Costa Rica Ongoing
Veniaminof United States Ongoing


New Activity / Unrest


Volcano index photo  Manam  | Papua New Guinea  | 4.08°S, 145.037°E  | Elevation 1807 m

The Darwin VAAC reported that on 6 December ash plumes from Manam were identified in satellite images rising to an altitude of 5.2 km (17,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifting SE. RVO noted that at 1215 on 8 December seismicity increased and indicated an eruption had begun, according to a news article. The eruption was characterized by forceful ash emissions, explosions that ejected lava fragments above the crater, and rumbling and roaring noises. Around 1300, based on pilot observations, information from RVO, and satellite images, large ash plumes rose as high as 15.2 km (50,000 ft) a.s.l and drifted E. Island reports noted that ejections of material ceased around 1900; audible noises ended around 1930. Satellite data indicated that ash from the high-altitude plume had begun to dissipate by 2020, and that on-going ash emissions rose to 8.2 km (27,000 ft) a.s.l. Island residents described heavy ashfall and that the sun was blocked by airborne ash, based on second-hand social media posts. News reports indicated that residents in Bokure and Kolang (NE and ENE flanks, respectively) had evacuated. Seismicity had declined by the end of the day. Dark ash plumes continued to be visible the next day, rising as high as 7.6 km (25,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifting E, though were less frequent.

Sources: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC), ReliefWeb, Loop, Loop



Volcano index photo  Mayon  | Luzon (Philippines)  | 13.257°N, 123.685°E  | Elevation 2462 m

PHIVOLCS reported that during 5-11 December white steam plumes periodically emitted from Mayon drifted mainly WSW. Crater incandescence was sometimes visible at night. A four-minute long event recorded by the seismic network began at 1224 on 9 December, and produced a grayish-brown ash plume that drifted W. The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a 0-5 scale) and PHIVOLCS reminded residents to stay away from the 6-km-radius Permanent Danger Zone and the 7-km Extended Danger Zone on the SSW and ENE flanks.

Source: Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (PHIVOLCS)



Ongoing Activity


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

JMA reported that at least two events at Minamidake crater (at Aira Caldera’s Sakurajima volcano) were recorded during 3-10 December, producing plumes that rose as high as 1.1 km above the crater rim. The Alert Level remained at 3 (on a 5-level scale).

Source: Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA)



Volcano index photo  Copahue  | Central Chile-Argentina border  | 37.856°S, 71.183°W  | Elevation 2953 m

The Buenos Aires VAAC reported that on 6 December a pilot observed ash from Copahue at an altitude of 3 km (10,000 ft) a.s.l. Ash was not visible in satellite data and could not be confirmed by unavailable webcams. An ash emission observed by a pilot and identified in satellite images on 7 December rose to 3 km (10,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SW.

Source: Buenos Aires Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Dukono  | Halmahera (Indonesia)  | 1.693°N, 127.894°E  | Elevation 1229 m

Based on satellite data, wind model data, and notices from PVMBG, the Darwin VAAC reported that during 4-11 December ash plumes from Dukono rose to altitudes of 1.8-2.4 km (6,000-8,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted mainly W, SW, and SE. The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a scale of 1-4), and visitors were warned to remain outside of the 2-km exclusion zone.

Sources: Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM), Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)



Volcano index photo  Ebeko  | Paramushir Island (Russia)  | 50.686°N, 156.014°E  | Elevation 1103 m

Volcanologists in Severo-Kurilsk (Paramushir Island), about 7 km E of Ebeko, observed explosions during 30 November-7 December that sent ash plumes to 3.6 km (11,800 ft) a.s.l. Ash plumes drifted E, causing ashfall in Severo-Kurilsk on 30 November, and 1 and 4 December. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-color scale).

Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)



Volcano index photo  Etna  | Sicily (Italy)  | 37.748°N, 14.999°E  | Elevation 3295 m

INGV reported that during 3-9 December activity at Etna was characterized by gas emissions at the summit craters, with periodic Strombolian activity from vents in Bocca Nuova, Northeast Crater (NEC), and New Southeast Crater (NSEC). Strombolian explosions at the cone in NSEC became more frequent on 4 December. In addition, lava effusion became continuous with small overlapping flows traveling about 500 m down the E flank of the cone. Incandescent blocks generated by the lava flows rolled to the base of the cone, and occasional small collapses produced minor ash plumes. Strombolian activity and occasional ash emissions were characteristic of vents in the W part of Bocca Nuova’s (BN-1) crater floor. Gas emissions at Voragine Crater continued from a vent on the E rim of the crater, and Strombolian explosions were evident at NEC.

Source: Sezione di Catania - Osservatorio Etneo (INGV)



Volcano index photo  Ibu  | Halmahera (Indonesia)  | 1.488°N, 127.63°E  | Elevation 1325 m

PVMBG reported that on 11 December an ash plume from Ibu rose to 1.8 km (6,000 ft) a.s.l., according to the Darwin VAAC. Weather clouds prevented views of the plume in satellite data. The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a scale of 1-4), and the public was warned to stay at least 2 km away from the active crater, and 3.5 km away on the N side.

Sources: Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM), Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)



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

HVO reported that lava at Kilauea’s Fissure 8 cone was last visible on 4 September, signaling the end of the Lower East Rift Zone (LERZ) eruptive phase. Consequently, the end of the LERZ eruption also marks the end of the over-arching, on-going eruption at Kilauea that began at the East Rift Zone (ERZ) in 1983. That determination was made by HVO in part by using the Global Volcanism Program guideline that an eruption should be considered over on the date of the last eruptive activity, and when there has not been renewed activity in the following three months.

HVO noted that geophysical data continued to show magma being supplied to Kilauea, including the refilling of the middle ERZ, and reminded the public that Kilauea remains an active volcano. As of 4 December the Volcano Alert Level remained at Advisory and the Aviation Color Code remained at Yellow.

Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)



Volcano index photo  Krakatau  | Indonesia  | 6.102°S, 105.423°E  | Elevation 813 m

PVMBG reported that events at Anak Krakatau were recorded at 0711 on 7 December, at 1050 on 9 December, and 1413 on 10 December. The event on 9 December generated a dense black ash plume that rose 700 m above the summit and drifted N.

Source: Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM)



Volcano index photo  Merapi  | Central Java (Indonesia)  | 7.54°S, 110.446°E  | Elevation 2910 m

PVMBG reported that during 30 November-6 December the lava dome in Merapi’s summit crater grew at a rate of 2,200 cubic meters per day. By 6 December the volume of the dome, based on photos taken from the SE, was an estimated 344,000 cubic meters. White emissions of variable density rose a maximum of 150 m above the summit. The Alert Level remained at 2 (on a scale of 1-4), and residents were warned to remain outside of the 3-km exclusion zone.

Source: Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM)



Volcano index photo  Nevados de Chillan  | Chile  | 36.868°S, 71.378°W  | Elevation 3180 m

ONEMI and SERNAGEOMIN reported that at 0313 on 7 December an explosion at Nevados de Chillán was recorded by the seismic network, and produced a high-temperature emission of gas and tephra recorded by a webcam. The Alert Level remained at Orange, the second highest level on a four-color scale, and residents were reminded not to approach the crater within 3 km. ONEMI maintained an Alert Level Yellow (the middle level on a three-color scale) for the communities of Pinto, Coihueco, and San Fabián.

Sources: Oficina Nacional de Emergencia-Ministerio del Interior (ONEMI), Servicio Nacional de Geología y Minería (SERNAGEOMIN)



Volcano index photo  Sabancaya  | Peru  | 15.787°S, 71.857°W  | Elevation 5960 m

Observatorio Vulcanológico del Sur del IGP (OVS-IGP) and Observatorio Vulcanológico del INGEMMET (OVI) reported that an average of 17 explosions per day occurred at Sabancaya during 3-9 December. Long-period seismic events were recorded, and hybrid earthquakes were infrequent and of low magnitude. Gas-and-ash plumes rose as high as 3 km above the crater rim and drifted 40 km E and SW. MIROVA detected seven thermal anomalies, and on 6 December the sulfur-dioxide gas flux was high at 3,600 tons per day. The report noted that the public should not approach the crater within a 12-km radius.

Sources: Instituto Geológico Minero y Metalúrgico (INGEMMET), Instituto Geofísico del Perú (IGP)



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

KVERT reported that a thermal anomaly over Sheveluch was identified in satellite images on 30 November, 1 December, and 3-4 December. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-color scale).

Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)



Volcano index photo  Turrialba  | Costa Rica  | 10.025°N, 83.767°W  | Elevation 3340 m

OVSICORI-UNA reported continuing activity at Turrialba during 5-11 December. A minor emission from the vent was visible on 5 December, and an ash emission drifted S the next day. An event at 0749 on 8 December produced an ash plume that rose 500 m and drifted NW. Emissions of ash, steam, and gas rose as high as 1 km on 9 December and caused ashfall in areas of Valle Central. On 10 December diffuse emissions were periodically observed during periods of clear viewing. That same day ash fell in Moravia (31 km WSW) and Santa Ana, and residents of Heredia (38 km W) noted a sulfur odor.

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



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

AVO reported that on 2 December satellite data revealed that a third lobe of lava from the cone in Veniaminof’s ice-filled summit caldera had traveled a short distance down the SE flank of the cone. All three lobes produced sometimes voluminous steam plumes due to their interaction with the ice and snow. The eruption of lava continued during 4-5 December. Satellite and webcam data showed elevated surface temperatures. Steam plumes with possible diffuse ash were periodically identified in webcam and satellite images. On 6 December seismicity changed from nearly continuous, low-level volcanic tremor to intermittent, small, low-frequency events and short bursts of tremor, possibly indicating that lava effusion had slowed or stopped. Variable seismicity continued through 12 December, though there was no visual confirmation of lava effusion. The Aviation Color Code remained at Orange (the second highest level on a four-color scale) and the Volcano Alert Level remained at Watch (the second highest level on a four-level scale).

Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)



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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.

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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)