Two volcanoes down, two volcanoes up!
Fire fountain on Nyamuragira in the Congo, January 2010.
Activity at Mayon has continues to drop – although PHIVOLCS warns that an eruption could happen at any moment and without much warning. About a quarter of the evacuated families have no returned home since PHIVOLCS gave the OK to return home on January 2 – but Philippine officials are still on alert in case evacuations have to be reinstated.
The resurgent Redoubt is no long … er … resurging? AVO lowered the alert status to Green – meaning normal/background levels of activity. Seismicity and degassing have both returned to typical background states for the volcano. So much for Redoubt.
The eruption of Nyamuragira in the Congo is still going strong. The AP posted some video of the sheet of fire fountaining coming from the fissure vent on the southern flank of the volcano while ITN captured video of a small cone building around one of the vents. It appears that multiple areas on the volcano are issuing lava and gases, so it seems like a significant event. Two days ago the lava flows had already travelled over 4 km. And in a bit of a “huh?” moment, UN troops are being used to protect the endangered chimpanzee in the area from the eruption. If you want some context for Virunga National Park and the significance of the area, you can check out a couple articles written by other ScienceBloggers on Nyamuragira and the Congo.
Finally, to follow up on yesterday’s news that Turrialba is erupting for the first time in over 100 years, the Comisión Nacional de Emergencias in Costa Rica has put the volcano on a “medium level” alert after the ash explosion on Tuesday. Fifty people have so far been evacuated from the slopes of the volcano as a precaution.