Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity – New Activity for the week 15 December – 21 December 2021

Fagradalsfjall (Reykjanes Peninsula, Iceland): (23 Dec) The Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO) detected an increasing trend of seismic activity began yesterday. 18 quakes at regular intervals of 1 to 10 per minute have been recorded located 2-4 km northeast of Geldingadalir followed by a significant rise of seismic energy at about 00:30 local time. 26 quakes during the past 24 hours were recorded with magnitudes of 3 or more. 1400 earthquakes have been detected in total over the last 24 hours, of which the largest quake with a maximum magnitude of 4.9 occurred at 09:23 local time and was widely felt on the SW corner.

Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai (Tonga, Tonga Islands): Explosive activity continues. Volcanic Ash Advisory Center (VAAC) Wellington warned about a volcanic ash plume that rose up to estimated 40000 ft (12200 m) altitude or flight level 400 and is moving at 10 kts in NE direction. During the explosion a base surge was generated, a common feature of many phreatomagmatic (hydromagmatic) eruptions. Pyroclastic cloud consisting of ash and steam is formed in a ring around the base of the eruption column.

Piton de la Fournaise (La Réunion): (22 Dec) The effusive activity at the volcano continues. A fountaining continues at four fissure vents feeding the lava flows on the southern flanks. A vigorous lava spattering is seen from the lowest fissure opened at 2000 m altitude. The volcanic tremor decreased gradually from 04:30 local time after a sharp peak related to the onset of the eruption.

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