Activity for the week of 27 February-4 March 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.
New Activity / Unrest
| Bougainville (Papua New Guinea)
| 6.137°S, 155.196°E
| Elevation 1855 m
Based on observations of satellite imagery and information from RVO, the Darwin VAAC reported that a diffuse plume from Bagana rose to an altitude of less than 3 km (10,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SW on 3 March. Later that day an ash-and-steam plume drifted SW.
Source: Darwin Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)
Ol Doinyo Lengai
| 2.764°S, 35.914°E
| Elevation 2962 m
According to Frederick Belton's Ol Doinyo Lengai website, a visitor reported a large plume accompanied by a "bang" during 26-27 February. The Toulouse VAAC reported that a pilot observed an ash plume that rose to an altitude of 10.7 km (35,000 ft) a.s.l. on 27 February. Another possible ash plume rose to the same altitude on 28 February and drifted SW. Based on a SIGMET, pilot reports, and observations of satellite imagery, the VAAC reported that eruption plumes possibly containing ash rose to altitudes of 10.7-13.7 km (35,000-45,000 ft) a.s.l. during 29 February and 3-4 March.
Sources: Ol Doinyo Lengai (Fred Belton), Toulouse Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC)
| United States
| 56.17°N, 159.38°W
| Elevation 2507 m
AVO reported elevated seismic activity from Veniaminof during 27 February-4 March. Web camera views showed steaming from the cone and occasional small ash bursts that rose to 200 m above the crater on 27 February. During 28 February-3 March views were obscured by cloud cover; low-level steaming was seen on 29 February during a break in the weather.
Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)
| Mariana Islands (USA)
| 16.35°N, 145.67°E
| Elevation 790 m
The USGS reported that levels of seismicity at Anatahan were elevated during 27 February-4 March. During 27-29 February emissions of sulfur dioxide were detected by the satellite-based Ozone Monitoring Instrument (OMI). Based on observations of satellite imagery, the Washington VAAC reported that an ash plume drifted SSW on 28 February. The USGS reported that a second plume rose to an altitude of less than 3 km (10,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted 240 km NW during 3-4 March.
Sources: Emergency Management Office of the Commonwealth of the Mariana Islands and United States Geological Survey Volcano Hazards Program, Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| Chuginadak Island (USA)
| 52.825°N, 169.944°W
| Elevation 1730 m
AVO reported that a weak thermal anomaly and an ash plume from Cleveland were visible on satellite imagery on 29 February. The ash plume rose to an altitude of below 3 km (10,000 ft) a.s.l. The Volcanic Alert Level remained at Advisory and the Aviation Color Code remained at Yellow.
Source: US Geological Survey Alaska Volcano Observatory (AVO)
| Hawaiian Islands (USA)
| 19.421°N, 155.287°W
| Elevation 1222 m
Based on observations during overflights, and web camera views when weather permitted, HVO reported that during 27 February-4 March activity from Kilauea's fissure segment D was concentrated at the Thanksgiving Eve Breakout (TEB) shield and satellitic shields to the E and SE. A pahoehoe flow ponded between the rootless shields and Kalalua Cone. Two lava flow lobes advanced through Royal Gardens subdivision and destroyed three abandoned homes by 28 February. One lobe reached the base of the Royal Gardens kipuka and Campout flow from early 2007.On 1 March the lobes merged and cut off the road access to the homes of the last two known residents. Incandescence from the TEB vent was noted during 29 February and 2-3 March.
Diffuse incandescence was observed in Pu'u 'O'o crater through the fume during 27 February and 1-3 March. Earthquakes were located beneath Halema'uma'u crater, along the S-flank faults, beneath the summit, N of Makaopuhi crater, and along the upper E and SW rift zones. Sulfur dioxide emission rates from the summit area were elevated at 2-4 times background values where levels have been since early January. The emission rate was about 970 tonnes per day on 3 March, compared to a background rate of 150-200 tons per day.
Source: US Geological Survey Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO)
| 38.692°S, 71.729°W
| Elevation 3125 m
SERNAGEOMIN reported weak sulfur dioxide plumes from two cones in Llaima's main crater during 26-28 February. An overflight on 28 February revealed that the internal structure of the crater had not changed since observations on 21 February. Weak fumarolic emissions from the main crater were noted during 2-3 March. The Alert Level remained at Yellow.
Source: Servicio Nacional de Geología y Minería (SERNAGEOMIN)
| Sulawesi (Indonesia)
| 1.358°N, 124.792°E
| Elevation 1580 m
CVGHM reported that on 28 February the Alert level for Lokon-Empung was lowered from 3 to 2 (on a scale of 1-4) due to a decrease in seismicity during 3-26 February, analysis of visual observations, and a lack of deformation. During 14-26 February, white plumes rose to an altitude of 1.7 km (5,600 ft) a.s.l. Visitors and tourists were prohibited from going within a 1-km radius of the crater.
Source: Pusat Vulkanologi dan Mitigasi Bencana Geologi (PVMBG, also known as CVGHM)
Nevado del Huila
| 2.93°N, 76.03°W
| Elevation 5364 m
INGEOMINAS reported that seismic tremor from Nevado del Huila on 2 March was possibly associated with ash emission. Based on a Bogota SIGMET, the Washington VAAC reported that an ash plume rose to an altitude of 7.6 km (25,000 ft) a.s.l. the same day.
Sources: Servicio Geológico Colombiano (SGC), Washington Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
| New Britain (Papua New Guinea)
| 4.271°S, 152.203°E
| Elevation 688 m
RVO reported that ash and steam plumes from Rabaul caldera's Tavurvur cone rose to altitudes of 0.9-2.2 km (3,000-7,200 ft) a.s.l. and drifted W during 27 February-4 March. Ashfall was reported in areas downwind, including Matupit, during 27 February-1 March. A smell of hydrogen-sulfide gas was reported in Rabaul Town and roaring noises were heard during 1-3 March. On 3 March, incandescence at the summit was observed.
Source: Rabaul Volcano Observatory (RVO)
| Central Kamchatka (Russia)
| 56.653°N, 161.36°E
| Elevation 3283 m
KVERT reported that seismic activity at Shiveluch was slightly above background levels and small hot avalanches descended the lava dome during 22-29 February. According to video footage, fumarolic activity was observed during 21-22 and 24-25 February. Based on seismic interpretation, ash plumes possibly rose to an altitude of 5.6 km (18,400 ft) a.s.l. during 24-26 February. Observations of satellite imagery revealed that a thermal anomaly was present in the crater during the reporting period. The Level of Concern Color Code remained at Orange.
Source: Kamchatkan Volcanic Eruption Response Team (KVERT)
| 16.72°N, 62.18°W
| Elevation 915 m
MVO reported that that during 27 February-4 March the lava dome at Soufrière Hills changed very little, based on limited visual observations during an overflight on 29 February and from ground locations. The E talus slope continued to erode, with both fresh and older material accumulating in the Tar River Valley. Active fumaroles around the lava dome were observed during breaks in cloud cover. The Alert Level remained elevated at 4 (on a scale of 0-5).
Source: Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO)
| 1.467°S, 78.442°W
| Elevation 5023 m
IG reported that although visual observations were very limited due to cloud cover, steam and ash-and-steam plumes from Tungurahua were spotted and rose to altitudes of 5.8-8 km (19,000-26,200 ft) a.s.l. during 27 February-1 March. Ash plumes drifted NW, W, SW, and SE, ashfall was reported in areas to the SW on 27 February. Lahars or mudflows descended the Mapayacu and Choglontus drainages in the SW, and drainages in the Pampas sector to the S on 27 and 28 February.
Source: Instituto Geofísico-Escuela Politécnica Nacional (IG)
| 16.355°S, 70.903°W
| Elevation 5672 m
Based on pilot reports, the Buenos Aires VAAC reported that an ash plume from Ubinas rose to altitudes of 5.5-6.1 km (18,000-20,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted SE on 2 March.
Source: Buenos Aires Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC)
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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