Report on Taal (Philippines) — 12 October-18 October 2022
Smithsonian Institution / US Geological Survey
Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 12 October-18 October 2022
Managing Editor: Sally Sennert.
Please cite this report as:
Global Volcanism Program, 2022. Report on Taal (Philippines) (Sennert, S, ed.). Weekly Volcanic Activity Report, 12 October-18 October 2022. Smithsonian Institution and US Geological Survey.
14.002°N, 120.993°E; summit elev. 311 m
All times are local (unless otherwise noted)
PHIVOLCS reported continuing unrest at Taal during 11-18 October. Upwelling gasses and hot fluids in the lake continued to be visible almost daily, and white steam emissions that generally rose as high as 1.5 km above the lake drifted in variable directions. Low-level background tremor and 1-9 daily volcanic earthquakes were recorded during 11-14 October. Sulfur dioxide emissions averaged 3,882 tonnes per day on 13 October. Activity increased during 14-15 October with six small phreatomagmatic bursts, each lasting 1-2 minutes long, and 26 volcanic earthquakes. Steam-and-gas plumes rose as high as 2.4 km and drifted NE and SE. Based on SIGMETS (Significant Meteorological statements) issued by the Ninoy Aquino International Airport, the Tokyo VAAC reported that during 14-15 October three ash plumes rose as high as 600 m (2,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted NW. During 15-16 October one phreatomagmatic burst was recorded along with 12 volcanic earthquakes and nine periods of volcanic tremor, each 2-70 minutes long. Six periods of volcanic tremor, totaling almost 4.5 hours, were detected during 16-17 October, and sulfur dioxide emissions were 4,422 tonnes per day on 17 October. Ground deformation measurements continued to show slight inflation in the western half of the caldera and deflation in the eastern half. The Alert Level remained at 1 (on a scale of 0-5), and PHIVOLCS reminded the public that the entire Taal Volcano Island was a Permanent Danger Zone (PDZ).
Geological Summary. Taal is one of the most active volcanoes in the Philippines and has produced some of its most powerful historical eruptions. Though not topographically prominent, its prehistorical eruptions have greatly changed the landscape of SW Luzon. The 15 x 20 km Talisay (Taal) caldera is largely filled by Lake Taal, whose 267 km2 surface lies only 3 m above sea level. The maximum depth of the lake is 160 m, and several eruptive centers lie submerged beneath the lake. The 5-km-wide Volcano Island in north-central Lake Taal is the location of all observed eruptions. The island is composed of coalescing small stratovolcanoes, tuff rings, and scoria cones. Powerful pyroclastic flows and surges have caused many fatalities.