Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity – Ongoing activity for the week 22 February – 28 February 2023
Ambae – Vanuatu : On 23 February the Vanuatu Meteorology and Geo-Hazards Department (VMGD) reported that the cone in Ambae’s Lake Voui continued to produce emissions consisting of steam, volcanic gases, and possibly occasional ash that drifted downwind. Volcanic earthquakes were recorded by the seismic network.
Bezymianny – Central Kamchatka (Russia) : KVERT reported that during 17-23 February a daily thermal anomaly over Bezymianny was identified in satellite images.
Cotopaxi – Ecuador : IG reported that the eruption at Cotopaxi continued during 22-28 February, characterized by almost daily emissions of gas, steam, and ash; inclement weather conditions occasionally prevented views. Gas-and-steam emissions rose 500 m above the crater rim and drifted W during 21-22 February. Weather clouds prevented visual observations of the volcano during most of 23 February, though by the late afternoon and into the next morning steam emissions with low ash content were seen rising 500 m and drifted SW. Gas-and-steam plumes rose 500 m and drifted W on 25 February. Several emissions of gas, steam, and ash rose as high as 2.4 km and drifted SE on 26 February. During periodic breaks in weather clouds, continuous emissions of gas, steam, and ash sere seen rising as high as 1.5 km and drifting E and SE. Minor amounts of ash fell in the province of Pichincha in Rumiñahui (61 km N), Rumipamba Vallecito, Conocoto (41 km N), El Pedregal (60 km N), Guamaní (42 km NNW), Quitumbe (41 km NNW), La Ecuatoriana (44 km NNW), Chillogallo (47 km NNW), Urubamba (Santo Tomas, 40 km NNW), La Magdalena (Barrio Nuevo, Villaflora, 48 km NNW) and San Bartolo. At 1430 on 28 February an ash plume rose 500 m and drifted SW.
Ebeko – Paramushir Island (Russia) : KVERT reported that moderate activity at Ebeko was ongoing during 16-23 February. A thermal anomaly was identified in satellite images on 21 February. According to volcanologists in Severo-Kurilsk (Paramushir Island, about 7 km E) explosions on 22 February generated ash plumes that rose as high as 3 km (10,000 ft) a.s.l. and drifted E.
Fuego – South-Central Guatemala : INSIVUMEH reported that 4-10 explosions per hour were recorded at Fuego during 22-28 February, generating ash plumes that rose as high as 1.1 km above the crater rim and drifted as far as 30 km NW, W, and SW. Weather clouds often prevented visual observations on 22 February. Explosions ejected incandescent material 100-400 m above the summit each day, and daily shock waves rattled structures in communities around the volcano. Daily block avalanches descended various drainages including the Ceniza (SSW), Seca (W), Trinidad (S), Taniluyá (SW), Honda, Las Lajas (SE), and El Jute (ESE), and often reached vegetated areas. Ashfall was recorded almost daily in areas downwind including Morelia (9 km SW), Panimaché I and II (8 km SW), Santa Sofía (12 km SW), Sangre de Cristo (8 km WSW), El Porvenir (8 km ENE), San Pedro Yepocapa (8 km NW), Finca la Asunción, Finca Palo Verde, and La Soledad (11 km N).
Great Sitkin – Andreanof Islands (USA) : AVO reported that slow lava effusion at Great Sitkin was confirmed by recent satellite images. A radar image from 19 February showed advancement of the E lobe of the flow field. Additionally, a smaller lobe to the S was advancing towards the crater rim where lava previously spilled down the SW flank in 2021-2022. Lava effusion in the summit crater was visible in 24 and 26 February satellite images. Seismicity was very low 22-28 February with a few local earthquakes detected during 22-23 and 24-25 February. Weather cloud cover sometimes prevented webcam and satellite views.
Kerinci – Central Sumatra : PVMBG reported that the eruption at Kerinci was ongoing during 22-28 February. Weather clouds often prevented visual observations of the volcano. White-and-gray ash plumes rose 50-150 m above the crater rim and drifted W and E on 26 February. The next day white-and-brown ash plumes rose as high as 150 m and drifted W.
Kilauea – Hawaiian Islands (USA): HVO reported that the eruption on the floor of Kilauea’s Halema’uma’u Crater continued during 22-28 February but at a decreased rate. The E and central vents were not erupting. The western lake in the basin of the 2021-2022 lava lake remained active but with weak lava flows. A small amount of lava is circulating within the lake with intermittent crustal overturns; the lake is mostly crusted over.
Merapi – Central Java : BPPTKG reported that the eruption at Merapi (on Java) continued during 17-23 February and seismicity remained at high levels. The SW lava dome produced 11 lava avalanches that traveled as far as 1.7 km down the SW flank (upstream in the Bebeng and Boyong drainages). No significant morphological changes to the central and SW lava domes were evident in webcam images. An avalanche from the weathered and altered 1998 lava wall was visible in webcam images on 10 February.
Nyamulagira – DR Congo : The Observatoire Volcanologique de Goma (OVG) reported that the lava lake on Nyamulagira’s crater floor continued to be active during 13-19 February. Seismicity was generally low, characterized by a few long-period earthquakes located up to 15 km deep along the large fracture connecting the Nyamuragira and Nyiragongo. High concentrations of carbon dioxide were measured in the Mazuku areas, and in an area to the W of a camp in the Lac Vert district in Bulengo.
Nyiragongo – DR Congo : The Observatoire Volcanologique de Goma (OVG) reported that the lava lake on Nyiragongo’s crater floor continued to be active during 13-19 February; faint glow emanated from the crater on 15 February. Seismicity was generally low, characterized by a few long-period earthquakes located up to 15 km deep along the large fracture connecting the Nyamuragira and Nyiragongo. A seismic station near the volcano registered a minor increase in the intensity of signals on 17 February. High concentrations of carbon dioxide were measured in the Mazuku areas, and in an area to the W of a camp in the Lac Vert district in Bulengo.
Santa Maria – Southwestern Guatemala : INSIVUMEH reported that the eruption at Santa María’s Santiaguito lava-dome complex continued during 22-28 February. Effusion from Caliente dome fed lava flows that slowly descended the San Isidro and Zanjón Seco drainages on the W and SW flanks. Incandescence from the dome and the lava flows was visible nightly. Block-and-ash flows from the dome, and from both the ends and sides of the flows, descended the S, SW, and W flanks almost daily. Ash plumes from the avalanches and from occasional explosions at the summit rose a few hundred meters high; during 22-23 February ash plumes rose 700 m above the summit and drifted WNW.
Semeru – Eastern Java : PVMBG reported that the eruption at Semeru continued during 22-28 February. Dense white-and-gray ash plumes rose 300-1,000 m above the summit and drifted N, NE, and E on 22 February. Weather conditions mostly prevented visual observations during the rest of the week, though at 0705 on 23 February a dense white-and-gray ash plume was seen rising to 1 km and drifting SE. The seismic network recorded an eruptive event at 0404 on 26 February; no emissions were observed.
Sheveluch – Central Kamchatka (Russia) : KVERT reported that the ongoing eruption at Sheveluch was generally characterized by explosions, hot avalanches, lava-dome extrusion, and strong fumarolic activity. A daily thermal anomaly was identified in satellite images during 16-23 February. During a field visit to the volcano on 25 February Kamchatka Volcano Station scientists observed and photographed the dome and saw incandescent debris avalanches on the originating at the dome’s summit.
Stromboli – Aeolian Islands (Italy) : INGV reported that both explosive and effusive activity at Stromboli occurred during 20-26 February at two vents in Area N, within the upper part of the Sciara del Fuoco, and at least two vents in the Area C-S (South-Central Crater area) in the crater terrace area. Explosions at vents N1 and N2 in Area N were variable in intensity and ejected coarse material (bombs and lapilli) 80-150 m at a rate of 2-7 explosions per hour. Spattering occasionally occurred at N2 vents during 20-24 February and was sometimes intense. Explosive activity at S2 in the Central-South area (CS) ejected fine-to-coarse material as high as 150 m above the vent at a rate of 1-7 explosions per hour. At around 0700 on 27 February lava overflowed vents in Area N and produced lava flows and at around midnight intense spattering in the same area was visible. Spattering continued at least through 2100 on 28 February; the lava flows were cooling, though some areas were hot due to accumulated material.
Suwanosejima – Ryukyu Islands (Japan) : JMA reported that the eruption at Suwanosejima’s Ontake Crater continued during 20-27 February. A total of 20 explosions were recorded, sending ash plumes as high as 2 km above the crater rim and ejecting large blocks as far as 400 m from the vent. Crater incandescence was visible at night. Occasional ashfall and rumbling noises were reported in Toshima village (3.5 km SSW).
Villarrica – Central Chile : The eruption at Villarrica was ongoing during 22-28 February. Low-intensity gas emissions rose from the crater on 22 February. Long-period earthquakes recorded at 1056 and 1301 on 27 February were associated with ash plumes that rose 300 m above the crater rim. Several additional minor ash emissions were visible during 1056-1320. The Alert Level remained at Yellow (the second lowest level on a four-color scale) according to SERNAGEOMIN.
Yasur – Vanuatu : On 23 February the Vanuatu Meteorology and Geohazards Department (VMGD) reported that activity at Yasur continued at a high level of “major unrest,” as defined by the Alert Level 2 status (the middle level on a scale of 0-4). Recent observations confirmed that low-to-moderate explosions continued, ejecting bombs that landed back into the crater and producing ash, gas, and steam emissions. The larger explosions occasionally ejected material outside of the crater.