Skip to content
Guest Thinkers

Friday Flotsam: Updates from Etna, Mexico, Kizimen and Kilauea

We’ve reached the last Friday of Winter Break here at Denison, so starting Monday, the students are back. This semester I will be breaking out my volcanoes/human culture seminar class, so that will be a lot of fun (I hope) for the students in the course … but a lot of work on my part, too. And honestly, what 18-22 year old wouldn’t want to watch “The Last Days of Pompeii”, “When Time Ran Out…” and “Dante’s Peak” (amongst many others).

Anyway, let’s end the week with some news tidbits (and webcams a plenty!):

Etna: Not much new to report from the revived Italian volcano (video). The activity has subsided since the impressive events (see below) on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week. Still, lots of great images of the eruption out there and likely this is only the start of what might be a busy year of Etna ~ and Dr. Boris Behncke has posted some great video (taken from his house) from the eruption as well. NASA released an image of the sulfur dioxide plume from the current eruption of Etna drifting out over the Mediterranean as well. Remember, you can watch all the action live on a webcam. You can also read up on the recent activity on this INGV release (italian PDF but with nice images/maps) UPDATEthe report, now in English! – or check out the INGV Catania website (that appears to be back online).

Etna erupting on January 12, 2011. Image submitted by Eruptions reader Kirby.

Mexico: Over in Mexico, Colima has been placed on Yellow Alert status due to increased explosions from the summit crater. This isn’t too out of the ordinary for Colima as the summit dome grows and collapses due to gravity. You can check out the live webcam for Colima to see what is going on at the restive Mexican volcano. Another restless Mexican volcano, Popocatépetl, has also been seeing some more active steaming and harmonic tremor over recent days at well – check that out on its webcam.

Kilauea: The lava flows at the Hawaiian volcano have been quite active lately as well – new video of the basaltic lava near Kalapana show the flows reaching within a few hundred feet of some of the remaining residences there. One home in particular danger was built in 2002, which if you think about the recent activity on Kilauea, seems to be asking for lava-related trouble … and if you think Hawai`i needs it, January is “Volcano Awareness Month” on the islands. Be sure to check out both the Pu’u O’o and Halema`uma`u Crater webcams from the Hawaii Volcano Observatory.

GVP Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: There is also a new USGS/Smithsonian Global Volcanism Program report for this week. As usual, it is packed with info including details on the continuing explosive activity at Kamchatka’s Kizimen. You can also see more details on the KVERT website and in this news piece, along with some details on an ash plume from another Kamchatka volcano, Ebeko. Elsewhere in the world, the report has details from events at Dukono, Reventador and Manam amongst many others, so check it out.

{Special thanks to Eruptions readers Sherine, Kirby and M. Kruger Randolph for information, links and images in this post.}

Top left: Kizimen in Kamchatka erupting on January 5, 2011. Image courtesy of KVERT. Click on the image to see a larger version.


Up Next
Here’s the most thoughtful conservative appreciation of the President’s speech.  And here are some points I want to emphasize: 1. The president did not blame the shooting on “inflammatory rhetoric.” There’s no evidence […]