Back from Iowa, time for some volcano news. Look for the answers to your questions for Dr. Boris Behncke to get posted later this week.

(And thanks for all the comments and kind words in the Open Thread. I'll start thinking about how to implement a lot of these in the next few weeks).

Undated photo of Volcan Galeras in Colombia.

  • Galeras stopped traffic near Pasto, Colombia and prompted the evacuation of 1,000 people over the weekend when it erupted. The volcano apparently produced ash that covered towns near the volcano, including Pashto, and the highway connected that town with Pasto was closed by Narino Government Secretary Fabio Trujillo. If the activity at Galeras continues to increase, more evacuations might be needed as well. The volcano remains on Red Alert, while Nevado del Huila remains at Orange Alert. As a side note, there was a brief article that mentions that ash from Huila is benefitting the coffee growers of the region - remember, fertile soil is one of the key reasons humans love to live near volcano
  • For those of you keeping score, there was another article about the potential to cause a volcano - specifcally the Campi Flegrei - to explosively erupt. This follows up on some reports from earlier this month and emphasizes that they will not be drilling into the active, main magma chamber. As Dr. Chris Kilburn (one of the principal investigators on the drilling) put it:
    We're going to be standing on the damned thing so unless we want to commit some sort of collective euthanasia that wouldn't be a good idea.

    Enough said.