Kilauea (Hawai’i): The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) note that the rates of seismicity over the month of December 2019 were variable but within long term vales. Sulfur dioxide emission rates were low at the summit and were below detection limits at Puʻu ʻŌʻō and the lower East Rift Zone. The pond at the bottom of Halema’uma’u crater, which began forming on July 25, 2019, continues to slowly expand and deepen. As of early January 2020, the dimensions of the pond are 84 meters by 190 meters (280 feet by 620 feet). Current depth is about 23 meters (75 feet).
Over the past month, about a dozen deflation-inflation (DI) events occurred beneath the summit, similar to the prior month. Since early March 2019, GPS stations and tiltmeters at the Kīlauea summit have recorded deformation consistent with slow magma accumulation within the shallow portion of the Kīlauea summit magma system (1-2 km or approximately 1 mile below ground level). However, HVO gas measurements show continuing low levels of sulfur dioxide, consistent with no significant shallowing of magma. Some amount of sulfur dioxide is being dissolved into the summit lake.
… [read more]
Mauna Loa (Big Island, Hawai’i): During the past week, HVO seismometers recorded 56 small magnitude earthquakes beneath the upper elevations of the volcano. Most earthquakes occurred at shallow depths of less than 5 km (~3 miles) beneath the volcano.
Global Positioning System (GPS) and Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) measurements show continued slow summit inflation, consistent with magma supply to the volcano’s shallow storage system.
Gas concentrations at the Sulphur Cone monitoring site on the Southwest Rift Zone remain stable. Fumarole temperatures as measured at both Sulphur Cone and the summit have not changed significantly.
Sakurajima (Kyushu, Japan): Volcanic Ash Advisory Center Tokyo (VAAC) issued the following report: EXPLODED AT 20200112/1503Z OVER FL060 EXTD SE OBS VA DTG:12/1440Z
Taal is erupting for the first time since 1977, and has sent a steam-and-ash plume to 16.8km (55,000ft), accompanied by a lot of lightning. PHIVOLCS has raised the Alert Level to 4 on a scale of 0-5. It is currently unknown whether the eruption is phreatic or phreatomagmatic.
Taal is an extremely dangerous volcano that has the potential to produce massive base surges and tsunami waves in the lake, as in the last major eruption in 1965; there is a 14km exclusion zone around the main crater in place.
Numerous flights have been cancelled and significant widespread ashfall (described as a “brownout”) is causing much disruption, with power outages reported.