Eruption continues off the coast of El Hierro

November 8, 2011EL HIERRO – The submarine volcanic eruption that began in mid-October in the Canary Islands continued in early November 2011. The volcanic island of El Hierro sits on a tectonic hot spot in the Atlantic Ocean off of North Africa and Spain. The Advanced Land Imager (ALI) on NASA’s Earth Observing-1 (EO-1) satellite acquired this natural-color image of El Hierro and a plume of volcanic material in the surrounding waters on November 2, 2011. The waters south of the island have been bubbling and fizzing with heat, sediment, bits of volcanic rock, and minerals for weeks, with the plume stretching tens of kilometers. The eruption is believed to be venting about 50 to 100 meters below the water surface, and it is warming the waters by as much as 10 degrees Celsius, according to geologist and blogger Erik Klimetti. The temperature of erupting basalt can be as hot as 1100 to 1200 degrees C, he notes. “Flank eruptions are one way that volcanoes build up and out of the seafloor—and sometimes above the water surface,” notes marine geologist Dan Fornari of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. “If the magmatism is maintained, platforms can develop between the islands, a la Galapagos. This is also an example of how the ocean acquires its chemical makeup. It’s not just run off from the continents, but also injection and chemical exchange caused by submarine volcanoes.” From October 26 to November 1, the Instituto Geográfico Nacional reported, 540 seismic events (quakes and tremors) were recorded by sensors on the island. Most of the activity was north of the island, at depths of 16 to 23 kilometers, and on the opposite side from where the plume of volcanic material was discoloring the water. More than 10,000 seismic events have been recorded near El Hierro since July 17. –NASA  
 In the Atlantic Ocean, off the Canary Island of El Hierro, 20-meter high jets of water are being spat into the air as the sea boils amid the stench of sulfur. The undersea volcano, which is set to create new land, is growing ever-nearer to the surface — but is the existing island at risk from the explosive eruptions? “The monster rises out of the water,” screamed the Spanish newspaper La Provincia. Scientists, meanwhile, are being a bit more level-headed about the undersea volcano south of El Hierro in the Canary Islands; they now believe it is in the third phase of its eruption — fountains of water have been shooting out of the Atlantic up to 20 meters in the air over the last few days. On Tuesday, some local residents even saw stones being catapulted out of the sea. A seething maelstrom, dozens of meters across, is bubbling away in the ocean. Measurements show that the vortices are significantly warmer than the surrounding water. So far, the volcano has only shown its explosive power beneath the water. But now the outbursts to the south of El Hierro are frothing up the surface, as if the ocean had hiccups. The lava is piling up on an underwater mountain. That the eruption is capable of firing jets of water into the air shows that this mountain is growing — the center of the eruption is approaching the surface. Geologists believe that new land could soon emerge from the sea, and islanders are already looking for a name for the new territory. There are only 70 meters to go until the mountain reaches the surface, experts from Spain’s National Geographic Institute (IGN) have reported. But how big is the risk to nearby residents? Last weekend, hundreds of people had to leave their homes in the southern part of El Hierro as streets were closed. And locals can quite literally smell the danger — stinking sulfur fumes are drifting across the ocean. The Volcanology Institute of the Canaries, Involcan, has reported a three-fold increase in carbon dioxide levels — a warning signal that further volcanic activity can be expected. De Spiegel
This entry was posted in Earth Changes, Earth Watch, High-risk potential hazard zone, Land fissures, cracks, sinkholes, Potential Earthchange hotspot, Seismic tremors, Volcanic Eruption, Volcano Watch. Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to Eruption continues off the coast of El Hierro

  1. c/o Luisport

    local tv shows pictures from thousands of dead fishes at the coast 😦 http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx260/coopercrew/deadfish.jpg TV1 reports that have appeared in the Restinga dead animals, we expect confirmation from neighbors
    http://twitter.com/#!/volcanhierro

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  2. cedar says:

    are any independent scientists monitoring the flank of the island where the fault is that could cause a tsunami if it falls?

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    • Ian says:

      I would not worry, wrong island – the relevant island has not had any recent activity, either volcanic or seismic.

      Probably one day the land will crash into the sea, but certainly not from this event.

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  3. luisport says:

    ACIA 4: 00 pm Tuesday the bubble has an outbreak and has been lifted between 2 and 3 metres in height, as reported by Arcadio Suárez.
    The eruption has warmed the water temperature to 35 degrees, and from time to time, to eject gases and magma to GLUGs remains.

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  4. luisport says:

    Update 08/11 – 16:34 UTC :
    A big cloud of steam just rising on the Sea of weary calm …
    A big steam cloud IS Covering the Las Calm Sea …
    Joke Asked Volta just us: Please ask Raymond What is happening?

    Bob’s first Explosion
    http://www.laprovincia.es/especiales/2011/11/08/volcan-hierro-genera-mayor-explosion-inicio/414190.html

    The volcano of El Hierro creates the biggest explosion since its inception
    A column of ash, rocks and gases emerge from the bubble in the Sea of ​​calms and rises more than 25 meters above sea level. The explosion has left a strong smell of sulfur in La Restinga

    PEDRO GUERRA / LAPROVINCIA.ES Around 1610 hours on Tuesday an explosion of ash, rocks and gases emerged from the bubble that throughout the morning has been active in the Sea of The Cry [Hostia!! should be Mar de Calmas]. Possibly, this latest explosion is the largest seen so far in the underwater volcano near La Restinga that may have risen above the sea more than 25 meters.

    The explosion left a strong smell of sulfur in La Restinga.

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  5. luisport says:

    Jorge Catalá Barona La burbuja de esta tarde. ¿Cuántos metros medirá? http://a4.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/s720x720/315538_241506855904585_100001358179001_623592_1307584359_n.jpg
    há 12 minutos · 16Maria Estévez Barrios, Jesus Ramirez, María Angeles Cenández e 13 outras pessoas gostam disto. · Traduzir.

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  6. luisport says:

    explosions every 10-15 mins now.

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  7. luisport says:

    URGENThttp://www.canarias7.es/
    18:28 Residents of El Pinar just felt a strong jolt. “It has moved around,” says Rosa Rodriguez from El Hierro. The signals have intensified: the smell of gas in the area of Puerto Naos (300 meters above La Restinga), possibly CO2, the earthquake was felt at 17:51 has had an intensity of 3.4 according to the National Geographic Institute. The bubble does not stop bubbling.

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  8. Luca says:

    Wow that video of the water boiling is scary.

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  9. c/o Luisport

    Update 08/11 – 16:34 UTC :
    A big cloud of steam just rising on the Sea of weary calm …
    A big steam cloud IS Covering the Las Calm Sea …
    Joke Asked Volta just us: Please ask Raymond What is happening?

    Bob’s first Explosion
    http://www.laprovincia.es/especiales/2011/11/08/volcan-hierro-genera-mayor-explosion-inicio/414190.html

    The volcano of El Hierro creates the biggest explosion since its inception
    A column of ash, rocks and gases emerge from the bubble in the Sea of ​​calms and rises more than 25 meters above sea level. The explosion has left a strong smell of sulfur in La Restinga

    PEDRO GUERRA / LAPROVINCIA.ES Around 1610 hours on Tuesday an explosion of ash, rocks and gases emerged from the bubble that throughout the morning has been active in the Sea of The Cry [Hostia!! should be Mar de Calmas]. Possibly, this latest explosion is the largest seen so far in the underwater volcano near La Restinga that may have risen above the sea more than 25 meters.

    The explosion left a strong smell of sulfur in La Restinga.

    Like

  10. This is so fascinating. As dangerous as this is, we are watching an island being born.

    Maranatha

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  11. luisport says:

    Picture of this morning’s earthquake-report… bieng the bubbling and with more intensity if possible…
    http://earthquake-report.cOM/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/elhierro-09112011-1.jp(g)http://www.earthquake-report.cOM/wp-content/uploads/2011/09 /elhierro-09112011-1.jpg
    http://www.earthquake-report.com..Há 36 minutes · 10To carregar…

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  12. luisport says:

    Incidentally, according to a sixth IGN worker has been poisoned while taking measurements on the content of carbon dioxide in the air … and had to be hospitalized… not a good sign!

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  13. luisport says:

    Update on the eruption in El Hierro volcano on 9 November, 2011
    The eruption in El Hierro volcano is ongoing and does not appear to show any signs of ending. However the strength of the eruption has dropped a bit during the past two days. But this was to be expected, since this is a fissure eruption and it has mostly been erupting from the same vents during the past four weeks.

    It has become a bit difficult to get accurate information on what is going on El Hierro Island. So I am not going to speculate on that. But from what I can gather it seems that dangerous gas level has been detected on the ground. But the reports that I am reading are bit unclear on this. This has also been mentioned in comments on this blog.

    As can be seen on this tremor plot the harmonic tremor in the eruption is dropping. Explosions that have taken place are also clear on this tremor plot. That might be because the eruption vent is getting smaller, therefor less magma is being push out the erupting vent. Or the currently erupting vent might be closing up. As so often happens with fissure type eruptions. If that happens does not mean that this eruption cycle is over. It just means that the current eruption vent has closed up. New fissures are most likely to open up in coming weeks as the eruption goes on. Where and when it impossible to know for sure.

    Earthquake activity continues in north part of El Hierro volcano. This are most likely dike intrusions into the bed rock there. So earthquake activity should be expected to continue north west of the town Frontera. If a dike intrusion manages to find a path to the surface in this area there is going to be a eruption and earthquake activity should drop following that. But until and if that happens there are going to be earthquakes. There is also chance of hydrothermal activity to show up in this area if a dike intrusion gets shallow into the bed rock. But is not go up from the ground and start a eruption. This might also be the reason why some part of El Hierro Island are experiencing high levels of toxic gas for the moment.

    I am going to post more on the eruption in El Hierro volcano as I know more what is going on.

    http://www.jonfr.com/volcano/?p=1768

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  14. Larz says:

    The worry is El Hierro splits in two. What do you think will happen then? New island built by flank could in itself cause a great landslide during creation. Also look at the direction of quakes it points to? That is the enigma is it not? I suggest no one rule out the worst but stay vigilant it just might save lives worlds away. One of the non-viewed concepts lies beneath it all mid atlantic ridge. A rift exchange is an even bigger culprit. We humans don’t understand how earth evolves completely yet that is about to see birth. I can’t conceive what will happen but it ain’t gonna be pretty. Could this be the 4th great earth change or just a normal cycle not understood? Other dimensions real, possibly it has my vote! ET’s that also has my interest peaked. Ancient intelligent civilizations are being unearthed yearly now. A colossal universe engulfing us. A moon placed just right and sun in proximity to sustain life. An astoroid slammed into moon recently NASA said it rang like a bell. Craters soo deep that we can’t see a bottom on the moon. Lots to worry about the unknown is scary and unnerving to say the least. We humans have to come to the conclusion knowledge will come answers to follow so question everything till “Truth,” sets us free. Star-Trek was trivial in concept so why soo many enactments? Faith in ourselves to help and inform is very powerful. PRAY…

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  15. luisport says:

    Soar CO2 levels in El Hierro
    Canary Institute Volcano Island detected in 1,400 tons of carbon dioxide

    PEDRO WAR – SPECIAL ENVOY THE IRON CO2 levels have skyrocketed in El Hierro in the last hours. If last week’s rate of emission of carbon dioxide and was 3.5 times higher than normal, with more than 1,200 tons per day around the island building, yesterday the figures identified by scientists at the Institute of the Canary Islands Volcano (non-tip) already exceeded the 1,400 tons per day in a place where the emission is normal average of 340 tonnes. Over 900 tonnes of CO2 per day and is considered an abnormal emission of carbon dioxide. CO2 is the first gas that emerges from the depths in a volcanic eruption and could mean that the magma moves with intensity for a out. Normally, the release of CO2 is a warning of a possible eruption. http://www.laprovincia.es/especiales/2011/11/10/disparan-niveles-co2-hierro/414654.html

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    • Wow, now this is frightening. Like many others, I had forgotten about the undersea nuclear waste dumps. And looking at the map, there are also nuclear dump sites by New Zealand, Japan, and along the Cascadia Subduction Zone, among other places. God help us all.

      Maranatha

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  16. Tim says:

    1989 IEA Report on ocean disposal of radioactive waste – http://www.iaea.org/Publications/Magazines/Bulletin/Bull314/31404684750.pdf

    World map (1989) sea dumping sites for low level radioactive waste – http://img638.imageshack.us/img638/5647/seadisposallowlevelradi.png

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