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Smithsonian / USGS Weekly Volcanic Activity Report

Weekly Volcanic Activity Map

You are currently viewing Archived reports for the week of 14 August-20 August 2002.

 Activity for the week of 14 August-20 August 2002

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
Asosan Kyushu (Japan) New
Hachijojima Japan New
Izu-Torishima Japan New
Suwanosejima Ryukyu Islands (Japan) New
Witori New Britain (Papua New Guinea) New

Etna Sicily (Italy) Ongoing
Fuego Guatemala Ongoing
Kilauea Hawaiian Islands (USA) Ongoing
Nyamuragira DR Congo Ongoing
Santa Maria Guatemala Ongoing
Sheveluch Central Kamchatka (Russia) Ongoing
Soufriere Hills Montserrat Ongoing
Tungurahua Ecuador Ongoing

New Activity / Unrest

Volcano index photo  Asosan  | Kyushu (Japan)  | 32.884°N, 131.104°E  | Elevation 1592 m

During 5 August to at least 15 August, isolated volcanic-tremor events occurred at Naka-dake, Aso's historically-active intra-caldera cone. The maximum number of events (335) was recorded on 12 August. Scientists found that the temperature of the southern crater wall remained high (307 ºC on 14 August) as it has since April 2002. There were no changes in water-pool temperature in the crater, nor had changes occurred in water level, sediment content, or fumarolic activity in the crater. The last time over 300 isolated volcanic-tremor events per day had been recorded at Aso was during 19 June-2 July 1992.

Source: Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) via the Volcano Research Center

Volcano index photo  Hachijojima  | Japan  | 33.137°N, 139.766°E  | Elevation 854 m

JMA reported that seismicity increased at Hachijo-jima beginning on 13 August around 1600. By 1700 that day 16 earthquakes were felt, with a maximum magnitude of 3. The hypocenters were located ~2 km off of the island's W shore at depths of 5-15 km, depending on assumed seismic-wave velocity models. During the afternoon of the 15th, the earthquakes migrated to the N, without a clear change in depth. By the 16th, volcanic tremor-like waveforms were also recorded. By the evening of the 16th seismicity began to decrease. JMA stated that the overall increase in seismicity might not lead directly to an eruption, though seismicity may continue at a similar level. According to the Geographical Survey Institute, GPS measurements revealed in the center of the island there was 5-6 cm of movement to the E and 10 cm of uplift until about 1500.

Source: Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) via the Volcano Research Center

Volcano index photo  Izu-Torishima  | Japan  | 30.484°N, 140.303°E  | Elevation 394 m

The eruption that began at Tori-shima on 11 August continued until at least noon on the 14th. Eruption clouds reached ~1.2 km a.s.l. on the 13th and ~1 km a.s.l. on the 14th. During observations on the 14th, scientists found smoke was being emitted from three areas on the western inner wall of the summit crater. They also found that the crater seemed to have widened during the eruption and the sea surface was no longer discolored.

Source: Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) via the Volcano Research Center

Volcano index photo  Suwanosejima  | Ryukyu Islands (Japan)  | 29.638°N, 129.714°E  | Elevation 796 m

Small explosive eruptions occurred at Suwanose-jima on 19 August. JMA reported that on the 19th two periods of continuous acoustic signals were recorded for 20-30 minutes each beginning around 0000 and 0630. The signals were the largest recorded thus far this year. Explosions and rumbling were heard from Toshima village, and an ash plume drifted to the SW. Volcanic tremor with continuous large acoustic signals was also recorded later in the day during 0940-0950 and 1410-1500. Small tremor events also occurred, and ash rose above the summit to an unknown height and drifted SE.

Sources: Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) via the Volcano Research Center, Kyodo News, Associated Press

Volcano index photo  Witori  | New Britain (Papua New Guinea)  | 5.576°S, 150.516°E  | Elevation 724 m

The Darwin VAAC reported that at Pago on 14 August around 1030 a very thin, low-level ash plume was visible on satellite imagery. The plume extended N to NNW and was probably below ~2.1 km a.s.l. On the 16th, intermittent eruptions with low ash content produced low-level plumes. The Rabaul Volcano Observatory reported that the low level of activity was expected to continue.

Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)

Ongoing Activity

Volcano index photo  Etna  | Sicily (Italy)  | 37.748°N, 14.999°E  | Elevation 3320 m

The Toulouse VAAC reported that beginning on 18 August around 1030, a web camera revealed that ash was near Etna's summit. Ash was also visible on satellite imagery. The Etna Volcan Sicilian website reported that during a visit to Etna on 18 August, ash was emitted from Northeast Crater, and gas, ash, and blocks were emitted from Bocca Nuova crater. Only gas was emitted from Voragine and Southeast craters.

Sources: Toulouse Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC), Etna Volcan Sicilien (Charles Rivière)

Volcano index photo  Fuego  | Guatemala  | 14.473°N, 90.88°W  | Elevation 3763 m

A new cycle of eruptive activity began at Fuego on 16 July that consisted of an increase in Strombolian explosions and the occurrence of high-frequency volcanic tremor for 24 hours. On 28 July a thick gray ash cloud extended 10-15 km in length and drifted to the W. Ash was deposited in the areas of Rochela, Panimaché, Morelia, Santa Sofía, Yepocàpa, and Chimaltenango. This activity was associated with the collapse of the front of a lava flow, which began on 23 January. On 29 July an increase in seismic activity was recorded, the energy of explosions in the crater increased, and there was a 2- to 3-km-long lava flow. On 2 August explosions changed from Strombolian to Vulcanian, ash columns rose 800-1,400 m above the crater, and avalanches of volcanic blocks traveled down the volcano's flanks. The same day, gas emission from the crater decreased significantly, and the SE lava flow did not travel as quickly as it had previously.

Source: Instituto Nacional de Sismologia, Vulcanologia, Meteorologia, e Hidrologia (INSIVUMEH)

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

During 14-19 August, lava flows from Kilauea sporadically entered the sea, traveling to the coast through lava tubes and also on the land surface. On the morning of the 18th several people saw part of a lava bench collapse into the sea. For most of the report period seismicity was at normal levels, with a decrease in the amount of long-period earthquakes and tremor that had been occurring since early June. On the morning of the 18th the amount of long-period seismicity increased. No significant deformation was recorded at the volcano.

Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)

Volcano index photo  Nyamuragira  | DR Congo  | 1.408°S, 29.2°E  | Elevation 3058 m

Scientists observing Nyamuragira, following the eruption that began on 25 July, found that on 6 August the lower part of a fracture on the volcano's N flank was active. They saw three very active lava fountains eject scoria about 100 m high and a very fast moving lava flow travel to the NE from a breach in the lowest part of the fracture. They estimated that about 3 million cubic meters of lava was being emitted per day. By the 7th, activity had dropped significantly, with only one weak lava fountain active and a decrease in the amount of tremor recorded.

Sources: Observatoire Volcanologique de Goma (OVG), UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)

Volcano index photo  Santa Maria  | Guatemala  | 14.757°N, 91.552°W  | Elevation 3745 m

Based on information from INSIVUMEH, the Washington VAAC reported that a lava-dome collapse at Santa María on 16 August at 0919 produced ash that rose to near the summit. No ash was visible on satellite imagery.

Source: Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)

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

During 9-16 August, seismicity remained above background levels at Shiveluch with about 10 earthquakes occurring with magnitudes 1.7-2.4 and a number of smaller earthquakes at depths of 0-6 km. In addition, many other local shallow seismic signals were registered, which possibly indicated ash-and-gas explosions (one to three per day to heights of 1.5-2.5 km above the dome). Avalanches were also registered. Seismicity decreased slightly by the end of the week. On several days thermal anomalies were visible on satellite imagery. The Concern Color Code was reduced from Orange ("explosive eruption is possible within a few days and may occur with little or no warning") to Yellow ("volcano is restless").

Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)

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

Volcanic and seismic activity at Soufrière Hills remained at high levels during 9-16 August. Lava-dome growth remained focused on the N side of the dome complex. Rockfall talus accumulated in the upper portions of Tuitt's Ghaut, and small pyroclastic flows occurred to the N in both Tuitt's and White's ghauts. The active lobe also shed rockfall talus into the notch in the north-western sector of the old dome which leads towards Tyre's Ghaut. SO2 fluxes remained at moderate levels.

Source: Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO)

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

During 14-20 August, emissions of steam, gas, and ash continued at Tungurahua. According to pilot reports, ash was seen rising to a maximum height of ~9.1 km a.s.l. Ash was not visible on satellite imagery.

Source: Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)

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Agung Colo Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai Lewotobi Papandayan Sotara
Ahyi Concepcion Ibu Lewotolo Parker Soufriere Hills
Aira Copahue Ijen Little Sitkin Pavlof Soufriere St. Vincent
Akan Cotopaxi Iliamna Llaima Peuet Sague South Sarigan Seamount
Alaid Cuicocha Iliwerung Loihi Pinatubo Spurr
Alu-Dalafilla Cumbal Inielika Lokon-Empung Planchon-Peteroa St. Helens
Ambae Dabbahu Ioto Lopevi Poas Stromboli
Ambang Dempo Irazu Machin Popocatepetl Sulu Range
Ambrym Descabezado Grande Iya Makian Puyehue-Cordon Caulle Sumbing
Anatahan Dieng Volcanic Complex Izu-Torishima Makushin Rabaul Sundoro
Antillanca Volcanic Complex Dukono Jackson Segment Maly Semyachik Raikoke Suretamatai
Antuco Ebeko Kaba Manam Ranakah Suwanosejima
Apoyeque Ebulobo Kadovar Manda Hararo Raoul Island Taal
Arenal Egon Kambalny Marapi Rasshua Tair, Jebel at
Asamayama Ekarma Kanaga Maroa Raung Takawangha
Askja Epi Kanlaon Martin Redoubt Talang
Asosan Erebus Karangetang Masaya Reventador Tambora
Augustine Erta Ale Karkar Maule, Laguna del Reykjanes Tanaga
Avachinsky Etna Karthala Mauna Loa Rincon de la Vieja Tandikat-Singgalang
Awu Etorofu-Yakeyama [Grozny Group] Karymsky Mayon Rinjani Tangkoko-Duasudara
Axial Seamount Eyjafjallajokull Kasatochi McDonald Islands Ritter Island Tangkuban Parahu
Azul, Cerro Fernandina Katla Melimoyu Rotorua Tara, Batu
Azumayama Fogo Kavachi Merapi Ruang Telica
Bagana Fonualei Kelimutu Midagahara Ruapehu Tenerife
Balbi Fournaise, Piton de la Kelut Misti, El Ruiz, Nevado del Tengger Caldera
Bamus Fourpeaked Kerinci Miyakejima Sabancaya Three Sisters
Banda Api Fuego Ketoi Momotombo Sakar Tinakula
Bardarbunga Fujisan Kharimkotan Monowai Salak Tofua
Barren Island Fukutoku-Oka-no-Ba Kick 'em Jenny Montagu Island San Cristobal Tokachidake
Batur Galeras Kikai Moyorodake [Medvezhia] San Miguel Tolbachik
Bezymianny Galunggung Kilauea Mutnovsky San Vicente Toliman
Bogoslof Gamalama Kirishimayama Myojinsho Sangay Tongariro
Brava Gamkonora Kizimen Nabro Sangeang Api Tungurahua
Bristol Island Gaua Klyuchevskoy Negra, Sierra Santa Ana Turrialba
Bulusan Gorely Kolokol Group Negro, Cerro Santa Maria Ubinas
Calbuco Great Sitkin Korovin Nightingale Island Sarigan Ulawun
Callaqui Grimsvotn Koryaksky Nishinoshima Sarychev Peak Unnamed
Cameroon Guagua Pichincha Krakatau Nisyros Saunders Unnamed
Campi Flegrei del Mar di Sicilia Guallatiri Krummel-Garbuna-Welcker Novarupta Semeru Veniaminof
Cayambe Guntur Kuchinoerabujima NW Rota-1 Semisopochnoi Villarrica
Cereme Hachijojima Kurikomayama Nyamuragira Seulawah Agam West Mata
Chachadake [Tiatia] Hakoneyama Kusatsu-Shiranesan Nyiragongo Sheveluch Whakaari/White Island
Chaiten Heard Kverkfjoll Okataina Shishaldin Witori
Chiginagak Hekla Lamington Okmok Simbo Wolf
Chikurachki Hierro Lamongan Ontakesan Sinabung Yasur
Chiles-Cerro Negro Hokkaido-Komagatake Langila Oraefajokull Sinarka Zaozan [Zaosan]
Chillan, Nevados de Home Reef Lanin Osorno Siple Zavodovski
Chirinkotan Hood Lascar Pacaya Sirung Zhupanovsky
Chirpoi Huaynaputina Lateiki Pagan Slamet Zubair Group
Cleveland Hudson, Cerro Lengai, Ol Doinyo Paluweh Soputan
Colima Huila, Nevado del Leroboleng Panarea Sorikmarapi
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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 profile page and to the complete Weekly Report for that week. This feature was first made available on 1 April 2009.

 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.

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.

5. USGS Disclaimer Statement for this Website:

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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URL: https://volcano.si.edu/reports_weekly.cfm

 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)