Lava and ash spew from Mt Etna flights redirected

 

Lava and ash spewing out of a crater of the giant Etna volcano in southern Italy forced the closure of nearby Catania airport, ANSA news agency said late Sunday. With a high risk of volcanic ash being blown onto the runways, the airport was closed for safety reasons and flights redirected to nearby Palermo. It is the volcano’s 17th eruptive activity since the start of the year.

http://hisz.rsoe.hu/alertmap/site/?pageid=event_desc&edis_id=VE-20111024-32802-ITA

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Characteristics and possible evolution of the eruption in El Hierro

On this island, a volcanic eruption occurs fissure and surtseyana type. The volcanic materials could be found taquilitas.

Underwater volcanic eruption continues off the coast of South El Hierro. Eruptive focus closer to the surface of the sea it was located about 150 meters deep. The result of the shallowness on Saturday October 15 began to see the first magmatic material at the sea surface, but stopped a few days after coming to the surface, presumably because the eruptive mouth closed.

The eruption of El Hierro launched at sea pyroclastic

These pyroclastic materials collected by the ships that have come to the point eruption and even coastal areas south of the island rocks are composed of two distinct visually.

Characteristics of the materials recovered from the eruption magmatic

These pyroclasts were formed out of lava 150 meters deep and 2.4 kilometers from the coast El Hierro. On the outside are black and round or oval shaped, but inside is a white, porous material, full of gas bubbles formed by the magma dragged from deeper zones.
The dark material is, according to a preliminary study of non-tip, a taquilita. This type of rock is a volcanic glass formed after rapid cooling of basaltic magma. As for the white material needed more comprehensive analysis.

What kind of volcanic eruption is El Hierro

In addition, the volcanic eruption of El Hierro is fissural type, which means that the lava does go outside along a fracture that can break the surface along a fissure or opening several more or less aligned mouths .

And that is the underwater eruption that takes place on the island of El Hierro appears to have several sources. According to official information would be at least three places that have gone lava and gases.

The lava eruptions of this type of flow with relative ease, ie that are not highly viscous lavas and are not in their composition a high percentage of silica. Basic lavas would.

Surtseyana eruption in El Hierro, the four phases

Also described the surtseyana like rash, by the eruption of Surtsey Island in Iceland. However, in this case the name refers to a volcanic eruption under water near the sea surface and this name affect the eruptive mouths found in shallower waters. The deeper pockets of the underwater eruption does not fall under this denomination.

These eruptions are characterized by four distinct phases. In the first volcanic materials are sea surface as bubbles of lava. Then appear a white column of steam to be followed by explosions caused by the underwater volcano and acquire darker shades. In the fourth stage would form a small island where there would be a fountain of lava that would expand until it ceased to exit.

In the current situation shallower focus of eruptive fissure eruption of El Hierro , which was located about 150 meters deep according to the information given by the PEVOLCA, seems to have closed, although the eruption may continue in deeper areas Building island of El Hierro. However, the volcanic tremor continued on CHIE seismic station that could precisely target the lava is coming out somewhere.

Possible evolution of the volcanic eruption in El Hierro

Thus, the published data on this volcanic phenomenon, although difficult to predict the possible evolution glimpse. The volcanic eruption of El Hierro could be stopped at any time, although in view of the deformation on the island is not expected to be the case in the short term.

It could also continue the rash known foci and in the case of the shallowest, and after passing through the phases of the eruption surtseyana, become an island, but for this last step came to an end would require a large input of magma from below.

If the contribution of magma is higher than the amount of lava that comes out of the different foci or if one of these will be closed for any reason, then it can happen that will open new eruptive mouths, either at sea or on land. If this happened in the sea in shallow areas may be mentioned earlier phases of the eruption surtseyana .

How could last eruption of El Hierro

In any case, the data of deformation and earthquakes in El Hierro which records the IGN, they have not stopped, at least reflect the geological process continues its course, and even may point to the arrival of more magma beneath the island. As for the duration of the volcanic phenomenon , David Calvo, non-tip, aimed at RTVE that could be extended in time but the important thing is the observation and monitoring of underwater eruption near the island to be opened from other sources if any.

Translated by Google. Written by Daniel Martin

http://www.suite101.net/news/caracteristicas-y-posible-evolucion-de-la-erupcion-en-el-hierro-a69990

Deepest and most explosive underwater eruption ever seen happening near Samoa hotspot

Posted on October 20, 2011 by The Extinction Protocol

SAMOA – An underwater volcano bursting with glowing lava bubbles — the deepest active submarine eruption seen to date — is shedding light on how volcanism can impact deep-sea life and reshape the face of the planet. Submarine eruptions account for about three-quarters of all of Earth’s volcanism, but the overlying ocean and the sheer vastness of the seafloor makes detecting and observing them difficult. The only active submarine eruptions that scientists had seen and analyzed until now were at the volcano NW Rota-1, near the island of Guam in the western Pacific. Now researchers have witnessed the deepest active submarine eruption yet. The volcano in question, West Mata, lies near the islands of Fiji in the southwestern Pacific in the Lau Basin. Here, the rate of subduction — the process in which one massive tectonic plate dives under another, typically forming chains of volcanoes — is the highest on Earth, and the region hosts ample signs of recent submarine volcanism. “It was absolutely stunning and exciting, something we’d never seen on the seafloor before,” researcher Joseph Resing, an oceanographer at the University of Washington in Seattle, told OurAmazingPlanet. This submarine eruption is the deepest seen yet, about 2,200 feet (700 m) deeper than NW Rota-1. This was deeper than scientists had expected to see explosive eruptions. Water pressure goes up the further down you go, “so as pressure goes up, the ability of gas as it comes out of magma to cause explosions is diminished, and the thought was that you wouldn’t get explosive eruptions below about 1,000 meters (3,300 feet),” Resing said. Eruptions at centers of ocean floor spreading — where the majority of eruptions on Earth happen — generally seem to occur in relatively short episodes lasting hours to months, but West Mata appears to have erupted near continuously since it was first observed in 2008. This might be because magma is focused there, instead of being spread across many volcanoes at once. “However, this is a question that we don’t currently know the answer to,” Resing said. –OAP

Read more: http://theextinctionprotocol.wordpress.com/2011/10/20/deepest-and-most-explosive-underwater-eruption-ever-seen-happening-near-samoa-hotspot/

Shiveluch in violent eruption

Shiveluch volcano. © Photo: ru.wikipedia.org/NASA/JSC

Reports speak of a violent volcanic eruption of Mount Shiveluch on Russia’s Far Eastern Kamchatka Peninsula.

Smoke and ash from the volcano have climbed to 10 kilometres, sparking no-fly warnings for the surrounding area. Snow around the crater is rapidly melting, creating mudslides.

Shiveluch supports a caldera of 1.5 kilometres in diameter. Its current activity period started in 1980.

http://english.ruvr.ru/2011/10/16/58828158.html

Red Alert Issued In El Hierro Town As Underwater Volcano Erupts

El Hierro. Google Maps

Spain’s Instituto Geográfico Nacional (IGN) confirmed on Tuesday that an underwater eruption has occurred five kilomtres off the southern coastline of El Hierro, the smallest of the Canary Island. The eruption is Spain’s first since the eruption in 1971 of the Teneguía volcano on the island of La Palma (Canary Islands).

The IGN says all three of its seismic stations on El Hierro in the Canary Islands have registered a volcanic tremor of low frequency in the south of the island at La Restinga, the southern-most village in the Canaries.  The estimated 537 residents of the town were summonsed to a local football field on Tuesday afternoon to be briefed on evacuation procedures.

A Red Alert has since been issued by local authorities for the town. A notice posted on the Emergencia El Hierro website on Tuesday evening stated: “Phase pre-eruptive. It involves the initiation of a preventive evacuation. Make yourself available to the authorities.”

Scientists from IGN and CSIC (Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas), meanwhile, have conducted a reconnaissance flight over the sea to the area south of the island, where they have located dead fish floating on the surface five kilometres from the coast. The dead fish were identified in an area where lower seismic magnitude occurred on October 9, at a depth of approximately 2 km.

The present volcanic activity is understood to be occurring at a depth of 600 metres (just under one kilometre) below sea level, in the Las Calmas sea.

Scientists from IGN, CSIC and the University of Cadiz have established their monitoring base at La Restinga. Efforts are underway to determine if the subsea volcanic vent is widening and if so, in which direction (away or toward El Hierro).

Initial reports of the eruption were received from crews on board four separate ships. Local media agency Canarias7 reported on Monday that Government authorities have suspended ferry activities to and from the 285 square-kilometre island.

English language newspaper  islandconnections.eu reported: “The martime chief for the province of Santa Cruz de Tenerife Antonio Padrón has issued a recomendation that boats should not sail closer than four miles off El Hierro. Divers have also been told to suspend all activities.”

The eruption takes place amidst an unprecedented earthquake swarm in El Hierro. The number of earthquakes recorded since July 17, 2011 on El Hierro has now exceeded 10,000.

Hierro, a shield volcano, has had a single historic eruption from the Volcan de Lomo Negro vent in 1793. The eruption lasted approximately one month and produced lava flows.

The recent surge in the number and intensity of earthquakes prompted officials from the IGN and The Canary Islands Government to raise the alert level for the Hierro volcano to ‘Yellow’ late last month. The alert remained in place on Monday, but the estimated 11,000 residents of El Hierro were being reassured not to be alarmed.

The majority of the earthquake activity shifted from El Golfo in the island’s northwest to beneath the Las Calmas Sea in the south earlier this month. Surface deformations exceeding 35mm have also been recorded on the island in recent weeks.

Evacuations

A dramatic rise in recorded earthquakes on El Hierro prompted officials to evacuate some local residents, shut El Hierro’s main tunnel, and close local schools on 27 September.

The Spanish Civil Guard (Guardia Civil) advised almost 50 residents of the municipality of La Frontera to leave their homes because of landslide fears. Two units of the Spanish military’s emergency intervention unit (EMU) were also placed on standby to depart the nearby island of Tenerife to assist in the possible evacuation of hundreds of other El Hierro residents.

Meanwhile, the island’s main tunnel (Tunel del Golfo), which links Frontera to Valverde, was shut forcing motorists to travel across the 280-sq-km island via a mountain road. The Cabildo de El Hierro also ordered the closure of schools.

Read more: http://www.irishweatheronline.com/news/earth-science/geology/red-alert-issued-in-el-hierro-town-as-underwater-volcano-erupts/41346.html

 

 

Health Defects Found In Children Living Near Quake-Stricken Fukushima Prefecture

The Fukushima plants, which were severly damaged by a mag 9 quake on March 11

The Fukushima plants, which were severly damaged by a mag 9 quake on March 11

Thyroid gland irregularities have been detected in a number of young children and teenagers evacuated from Japan’s Fukushima Prefecture following its nuclear plant crisis.

According to a study, 10 out of 130 children evacuated from Fukushima Prefecture showed hormonal and other irregularities in their thyroid glands, the Kyodo news agency reported. The investigation was done by a charity dedicated to help victims of the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear accident.

The Japan Chernobyl Foundation, which is based in Japan’s Nagano Prefecture, carried out the study in cooperation with the Shinshu University Hospital, taking blood and urine samples from individuals up to 16 years old and infants as young as one month old.

The tests took place through the end of August in Chino, Nagano, where the children were housed temporarily following their evacuation from Fukushima, where the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant was crippled and caused the country’s ongoing nuclear crisis.

The study revealed that one child had a thyroid hormone level lower than normal while seven had above average thyroid stimulation hormone levels. In addition, two of the tested youths were diagnosed with slightly high blood concentrations of a protein called thyroglobulin, possibly caused by damage to their thyroid glands.

However, Japan Chernobyl Foundation chief Minoru Kamata underlined that no clear link was found between the radiation released from the nuclear plant and the children’s health condition. Nonetheless, Minoru stressed that long-term observation is necessary and key to finding any possible impact on human health due to the nuclear crisis.

Last Friday, the government of Japan lifted its evacuation advisory in certain areas within a 20 to 30 kilometer (12.4 to 18.6 mile) radius from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. The lifted advisory had covered the entire towns of Hirono and Naraha, the village of Kawauchi, and parts of Minamisomo and Tamura, all located in Japan’s Fukushima Prefecture which was hit hard by the earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear crisis.

Also last Friday, plutonium was detected at six locations in Fukushima Prefecture, including in the village of Iitate which is located about 45 kilometers (28 miles) northwest of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

Japanese science ministry official said the plutonium was detected as a result of the nuclear crisis at the Fukushima plant. This was the first time the government confirmed the spread of plutonium to the village. However, officials said the amount of detected plutonium was low and poses no danger to health.

Japan has been facing an ongoing nuclear crisis since the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant was severely damaged on March 11 when a 9.0-magnitude earthquake and a subsequent tsunami devastated the country. The disaster disabled the cooling systems of the plant and radioactive elements leaked into the sea and were later found in water, air and food products in some parts of Japan.

At least 15,813 people were killed as a result of the earthquake and tsunami while 3,971 others remain missing. There are still more than 88,000 people who are staying in shelters in 21 prefectures around Japan.

By PAUL VAUGHAN – Thu Oct 06, 3:28 pm

http://www.irishweatheronline.com/news/earth-science/geology/health-defects-found-in-children-living-near-quake-stricken-fukushima-prefecture/40893.html

Rena oil spill an unfortunate lesson

Blogpost by Nathan Argent – October 7, 2011 at 16:40

The Container ship Rena inexplicably crashed into the Astrolabe Reef, about seven kilometres north of Motiti Island, near Tauranga early on Wednesday. It is carrying 1700 tonnes of heavy fuel oil, some of which has already started to leak into the sea.

Since then, fears of a potential environment disaster have grown as the leaking oil has spread threatening wildlife, including whales, birds and seals. Indeed, Environment Minister Nick Smith was quoted as saying that the spill from the ship “had the potential to be New Zealand’s most significant maritime pollution disaster in decades”. This is very disturbing news.

Oiled seabirds have already been found dead close to the Rena and more birds have been spotted in the water, covered in oil. It is also potentially disastrous for the blue whales and dolphins presently calving in the area, as well as numerous other marine species.

Response teams have so far been unable to deploy oil booms to contain the spill. The response so far as been to use a dispersant called Corexit  9500 – which is being sprayed on the water to disperse the oil. Corexit is the same chemical used in the Gulf of Mexico to deal with the oil from BP’s Deepwater Horizon spill.

Unfortunately ‘dispersal’ essentially means never cleaning up the oil. It will just stay out there and continue to pollute the marine environment. The reason being that Corexit acts like a surfactant and attracts the oil. The oil then forms globules and sinks to the bottom.

Some studies have shown that Corexit 9500 is four times as toxic as the oil itself.  Both are now going into the ocean water. It’s not a good situation.

As the authorities battle to get the spill under control and mitigate against the worst environmental effects, we also hope that this incident gives the Government pause for thought with regards to it’s deepwater oil drilling plans. This accident is an unfortunate reminder of just how difficult it is to deal with oil spills at sea. It’s a slow spill in a relatively accessible place, and the weather and sea conditions have been favourable yet even so, it is testing NZ’s response capability to the limits.

It’s shaping up to be a significant disaster but, bad as it is, it will be a walk in the park compared to what would happen if we had a Deepwater Horizon type spill.

Greenpeace has offered Maritime NZ the support of our inflatable boats, experienced drivers and volunteers to assist in the oil clean up and the New Zealand Wildlife Health Centre is calling for volunteers to assist in the recovery and rehabilitation of oiled wildlife but as yet there is little anyone can do.

Despite the best intentions, the oil spill response team in Tauranga will not be able to do enough. There is no ‘enough’.

The tools we have to respond to oil spills are orders of magnitude too small to combat the damage they do. We can’t fix oil spills; we can only prevent them. And we can only prevent the really catastrophic spills by saying no to deep sea oil drilling.

Sign the no deep sea oil petition here

http://www.greenpeace.org/new-zealand/en/news/blog/rena-oil-spill-an-unfortunate-lesson/blog/37226/