Today’s eruption summary
These days, it seems like every time we think the eruption’s settled into a kind of equilibrium, it ramps up its activity in one way or another, so I’m sure this headline will be obsolete by morning.
But for today, Kilauea’s new status quo still holds: increasing numbers of summit earthquakes leading up to an ash/gas explosion (yesterday’s was 5.6); fissure 8 pouring out a river of lava adding new real estates to former Kapoho Bay. Updated count in homes lost jumps to ~600, most during the past week when 8’s wide flow covered shore communities.
“Lava fountaining at Fissure 8 fluctuated with heights varying between 190 and 215 feet. This activity is feeding a lava channel flowing east to the ocean entry in the Kapoho Bay area. The noon overflight found that the delta is about 1.2 mi wide in the Vacationland/Waopae area and observed the flow was expanding northward through Kapoho Beachlots. A large area of upwelling offshore suggests the presence of lava flowing on the ocean floor in that area.” —HVO alert June 7, 4:24 HST
Easterly winds tomorrow may blow more vog, particulates, and Pele’s hair over populated areas to the west.
Last HVO update of the evening:
Kīlauea Status Report: 10:22 PM HST June 7, 2018https://t.co/7sDZqcOJ5s
No significant changes; afternoon overflight grounded due to bad weather; summit seismicity climbing, and a small explosion is expected overnight based on patterns of previous events. pic.twitter.com/qVj0nqn4ge
— USGS Volcanoes🌋 (@USGSVolcanoes) June 8, 2018
Video/Conference Call Excerpt:
This is something that hasn’t really come up, and I think it’s important to hear: a frank reply from USGS Wendy Stovall and Leslie Gordon during a media conference call about the psychological impact of this eruption on scientists.
Images, more videos, and info (including science segment of this conference call) after the cut.
Monday 9am HVO Kilauea Briefing
USGS volcanologist Jessica Ball. (Transcript) Paraphrase/summary: [Morning June 7] Fissure 8 fountaining 130-210 ft, lava ocean entry Vacationlands, laze hazard. N. lobe of flow stalled. No other fissures active. 5.6 Summit explosion, 4:07pm June 6, 10K ash cloud. Halema’uma’u slumping continues.
USGS Overflight PHOTOS: FIssure 8 6:30 am
USGS Ocean Entry PHOTOS, 7am
“Beginning on June 3, lava from fissure 8 entered the ocean at Kapoho Bay. By June 6, lava had completely filled Kapoho Bay and built a delta that now extends over a mile from shore. A helicopter overflight of Kīlauea Volcano’s lower East Rift Zone on June 6, 2018, around 5:00 pm.m HST documented lava-seawater interactions at the ocean entry and the formation of a white plume called laze. Lava entering the ocean builds a platform of new land known as a lava delta. This new land appears stable, but hides a foundation of loose rubble that can collapse into the ocean.” — USGS
Changes at Summit: ESA Satellite Radar
I have to admit, I’m hoping they’ve moved any hard-to-replace equipment and exhibits from the HVO and Jaggar Museum. So far, that “unstable crater rim” and scarp seems to end well short of the western wall of the caldera. But the slow-moving disaster down in Puna shows the wisdom of taking precautionary measures before new hazards make it too dangerous to go back for material items.
Luckily, HVO’s scientists aren’t hampered by denial, and they should be able to estimate the chances of the slumping/collapse propagating far enough to impact the caldera wall.
Damage/debris near Halema’uma’u Crater
When Deputy-Scientist-in-Chief Steve Brantley went to check on the summit June 5, somebody— HVO’s being coy about who— risked visiting the old Halema’uma’u parking lot for a spot of fieldwork. It looks like a Mars-scape up there right now. I wonder just how far west the crater wall’s going to fall in? I hope the Jaggar Museum and HVO are out of the slump zone.
Pu’u O’o Crater Empty of Lava
Poor ol’ thing. It’s irrational, especially with all the major losses of homes, property, pets and livelihoods, but I’m mourning Pu’u O’o in a low-key way. It made such a profound impression on me as a kid.
USGS 11am Conference Call
Janet Babb, USGS (Summary/Paraphrase):
LERZ — Fissure 8 active, fountains up to 230ft, lava channel east to Kapoho Bay. N lobe “not receiving a lot of lava, so it’s not making much progress.” Lobe west of Four Corners Cinder Pit inactive. Very minor overflows from fissure 8 channel.
Ocean entry along broad front, Kapoho Bay, Vacationland, creeping N on remaining Kapoho Beach Lot area.
SUMMIT— After yesterday’s 4:07pm plume (ash/gas), 10K ft, “released enough energy to be equivalent to M5.6 earthquake,” seismicity dropped; summit relatively quiet overnight. Expect seismicity to increase throughout day, probably leading to next explosion. Halema’uma’u rim/walls continue to slump inward, subsidence.
GAS EMISSIONS: SO2 remains high in LERZ, diminished at summit but still high enough to impact downwind communities. Vog/gas release with each explosion. Not much ash produced by these explosions now.
[EDIT: AHA! BigIslandVideo mostly takes audio/video from other people and repackages them, but they sometimes leave stuff out. I finally tracked down an archive of USGS 11AM conference calls and community meetings at which the USGS has usually delivered a 10 minute presentation.]
This week’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory’s newsletter features: “How to protect yourself from volcanic ash produced by Halema’uma’u explosions”
Speaking of Volcano Watch, here’s a 2008 edition answering a question much in the news lately: “Who owns new coastal lands created by lava flows?”
HVO ON SOCIAL MEDIA
This block was thrown out during an explosion at Halema‘uma‘u on May 18, 1924, while Acting HVO director Ruy Finch and others were nearby. The block landed about 600 m (2000 ft) from today's rim of Halemaumau and created a large impact crater. #TBT #Kīlauea pic.twitter.com/Buja5K4UEl
— USGS (@USGS) June 7, 2018
Our #Halemaumau experts think that the lava lake doesn't necessarily need to come back. If the deflation from the subsidence stops or slows, the explosions MIGHT stop (but it's not a given). #Kilauea #KilaueaErupts
— USGS Volcanoes🌋 (@USGSVolcanoes) June 8, 2018
It has been the pattern at the #Kilauea summit and #Halemaumau Crater for the past several days: an increase in seismic activity for a day to a day and a half, followed by an explosion, followed by a dropoff and gradual ramp-up of earthquakes. #KilaueaErupts
— USGS Volcanoes🌋 (@USGSVolcanoes) June 7, 2018
That would be 24 hours from the last explosion – roughly. It has been as long as 36, so it would make the time frame 4PM HST today to 6AM HST tomorrow. Unfortunately, that could change – volcanoes don't usually follow schedules! #Halemaumau #Kilauea #KilaueaErupts
— USGS Volcanoes🌋 (@USGSVolcanoes) June 7, 2018
Posts from Other Geologists
Not every geologist works for the USGS. Some of them are actually getting 7 hours of sleep right now.
- Erik Klemetti, Rocky Planet Blog, “Kilauea Eats an Entire Bay and Lake in Hawaii”
- Geology Page, reporting on U of Manchester research, “Scientists use 4D scanning to predict behavior of volcanoes”
- By the way, Volcano Discovery has served as a volcano info hub (and tour organizer) since the early 2000s. Here’s their Kilauea updates page.
Mick Kalber Daily Overflight
Amazing Fissure 8/lava flow images today.
Let’s not get jaded that we can actually watch this kind of thing on a daily basis.
Hawaii Civil Defense Alerts
Pretty much same wording for last few days, with minor updates for latest summit explosion and fissure 8’s lava flow. Its leading edge into the bay is now 1.2 miles wide. Brief overflows on the north side of lava channel occasionally encroach on few remaining Kapoho Beach Lots. At 12pm, CD announced that curfew is lifted west of Pomaikai. [6am] | [12pm] | [6pm]
June 7 photos from Hawaii Civil Defense:
- See 14 more images/vids in their June 7 photo album
kilauea upDATES FROM LOCAL HAWAIIAN news
- Lower East Rift Zone updates
HSA: “New coastline emerges as Kilauea pumps more lava to the sea”
HNN: “600 homes confirmed destroyed on Big Island as state pledges new aid”
HSA: “Lava claims nearly 600 homes in lower Puna; select curfews lifted for residents”
- Summit updates
HSA: “Kilauea summit blast sends ash soaring; toll of homes likely to jump by hundreds”
- Science news
HSA: “Scientists reap mountain of data from Hawaii’s rumbling Kilaeua volcano”
BIVN: (Video + article): “Eruption Takes Emotional Toll, Even On Scientists”
- Human (and nonhuman) impact
HTH: “Mayor reflects on destruction of Kapoho”
HNN: “Pele’s Path: The People of Puna,” new half half hour documentary, followup on “Pele’s Path: Eyewitnesses to History” May 23 special
HTH: “County: 20 ‘tiny homes’ for displaced residents almost ready”
HSA: “More citations issued to loiterers in active Kilauea eruption zones”
HSA: “Residents feel safe despite lava but chafe at government controls”
BIVN: (Video+article) “Micro-Units TO Be Built in Pahoa For Lava Evacuees”
HNN: “Network forms to help lava evacuees take care of pets, livestock“
KITV: “Eruption Threatens Future of Some Big Island Schools”
LAVA IMAGERY: Photographer Bruce Omori
An uncredited photo Tweet prompted me to Google my way to a professional photographer’s fantastic lava photos (apart from first video clip, they’re all from Pu’u O’o lava flows earlier this year).
Four examples from photographer Bruce Omori’s Instagram:
The apex, or source of this breakout, forms a cool jagged abstract as beads of cooling lava extend the trailing edge of the growing veil over the molten river. 🙂 Mahalo nui @ParadiseHelicopters !! . . . . #pocket_world #ig_abstract #dream_spots #visual_heaven #aerial #abstractaerialart #natgeoadventure #earthexperience #mthrworld #majestic_earth #igworldglobal #ilovenature #ig_divineshots #EarthOfficial #earth_shotz #marvelshots #theworldshotz #igbest_shotz #natgeoyourshot #natgeotravelpic #epic_captures #awesomeglobe #splendid_earth
Twister Thursday!! Wow, what an overflight we had this morning! First, a PINK rainbow cast by the rising sun… then these vortices!!! Such an amazing sight to witness! Apparently, there was a downpour over the eruption zone an hour or two prior to our flight, and it generated quite a bit of steam atop the 61G tube, and because of the light variable winds, the rising steam cloud created vortex, after vortex!! And, of course, we had AMAZING lava as well! Lol!! Lava Update coming soon!! 🙂 Mahalo nui @paradisehelicopters !! @extremeexposurefineartgallery @hotseathawaii @hawaiinewsnow @weatherchannel
Happy 4th!!! Pyroclastic Fragmentation: An immense lava bubble explodes at the Waikupanaha ocean entry on July 4th, 2008. REAL fireworks displaying our nation's colors!!! 🙂 Have a fun and safe holiday!!! #lava #hawaii #kilauea #extremeexposurephotographytours #bruceomori #extremeexposurefineartgallery
That entire album is honest-to-gosh geology porn, if igneous is your kink. There’s more on his website. I recognize several of his iconic photos; “Creation” in particular seems to pop up unsourced all over the place. Time Magazine also ran a short feature on some of his overflight photos of the early days of the Leilani fissure eruptions.
Social Media Roundup
This photographer’s Instagram has several photos of an LERZ overflight, apparently last Sunday:
— Liem Bahneman (@Liembo) June 8, 2018
The sliver of water to the bottom right is the last remnant of Kapoho Bay. Lava from Fissure 8 reached the water only 18 hours before and only hours later had completely filled the bay. The loss of homes, beach and tide pools is devastating. #Kilauea #lava #Hawaii #eastriftzone #kapoho #eruption #fissure8 #fissure
More prosaically, here’s the latest ESA Short Wave Infrared (SWIR) Satellite images:
— Ross (@RossVolc) June 8, 2018
I’m not the only one intrigued by the summit’s geyser-like periodicity at the moment. (Pu’u O’o was erupting about every 25 days when I arrived, and switched over to constant/effusive while I was there. When it comes to volcanoes, one can’t become complacent.)
You gotta check this out!
Here we have a graph from the USGS showing deflationary tilt on Kīlauea.
What you see here is the heartbeat of an active volcano! Check back for the latest eruption updates#kilauea #halemaumau #lavalake #jaggarmuseum #hawaiivolcanoes #hvnp #HI #lava pic.twitter.com/rV3LUfA4nK
— Kīlauea EcoGuides (@KilaueaEcoGuide) June 8, 2018
Random pretty photo, although I suspect it may not be the original photographer:
People watch from a tour boat as lava flows into the Pacific Ocean in the Kapoho area, east of Pahoa, during ongoing eruptions of the Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii.jpg pic.twitter.com/8vKtKnBs3Q
— Boateng Duka Kofi (@DukaKofi) June 8, 2018
And on the less photogenic, more painful side of this eruption:
#LeilaniEstatesEruption #KilaueaVolcano LATEST (June 7 at 3:45 PM): Hawaiʻi County officials now say at least 600 homes are gone as Mayor Harry Kim has readjusted the number of houses believed to be claimed by lava back up to 500 — in just the Vacationland and Kapoho Beach Lots areas — a day after the Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense Agency said 130 homes were officially destroyed. According to Civil Defense, all of Vacationland’s 150-160 homes are covered in lava and only about 30 of Kapoho Beach Lots’ 350 houses are believed to be spared. #HappeningNow: If you’ve lost a home or if your house is in the path of lava, you may want to head to the Hawaiian Shores Community Association Building (“The Stables”) at 15-859 Kahakai Boulevard today from 3:30 – 6:30 PM for a Puna Insurance Claims Forum hosted by the Hawaiʻi County Bar Association, County of Hawaiʻi, State of Hawaiʻi, United Policyholders and Hawaiʻi Public Adjusters. The three hour presentation wraps at 6:30 PM with a public Question and Answer period with all the panel members. For more information, call Coral Behan at Hawaiʻi Public Adjuster 808-856-3041 or email: email@example.com. Stay tuned to @HawaiiNewsNow for the very latest developments #HInews #HawaiiNews #HNN #HawaiiNewsNow #WeAreYourSource (Photo: @Heets7 taken Tuesday)
Below: clip of slow-moving a’a flow near Noni Farms, livestock evacs
Plus: short album of some of Andrew Richard Hara’s best eruption photos
Part 2 of 2 – 20180605 @ 14:30-19:00 Noni Farms Road / Papaya Farms . A slow moving flow front on Noni Farms Road from Fissure 8 continue to edge into properties. Cows, sheep, and goats were being transported and herded out of Noni Farms in multiple trailers and vehicles from backbreaking community effort. A’a began approaching a wide section of northern Noni Farms Road and continued to flow into a deep 30-40ft wide crack large enough to divert a portion of the flow into a linear northeast pathway, away from homes and cultivated farmland. There is no doubt that this crack has spared many properties. Clinker a’a continued to descend in the crack at ~25ft/hr with audible sounds similar to ceramic plates crashing. Surrounding portions of the flow around the large crack were not advancing and continued to cool with few streams of gas, smoke, and steam in dense portions of the flow. Several toes of a’a lay dormant from the aggressive movement days earlier which intersected and engulfed many backroads and expanses of agriculture. Some homes were lost in this flow while others stood inches away from the dark, sharp crumble of a’a. Some of the descriptions of farms shared today were unfathomable as large swaths of hot rock replaced shelter and sources of income for many families. . All areas that I have documented throughout this eruptive series have been through approved with legal access. Please kokua and do not attempt to trespass in areas unless official approval has been granted. . My respect and best wishes go out to the neighborhood of Leilani Estates, Lanipuna Gardens, and the areas within and between Kapoho. My heart especially goes out to all of my friends who have lost their homes in this fissure eruption. I just cannot comprehend the sheer immensity of this fissure eruption, many areas are becoming unrecognizable. I am at a loss for words. ____ #leilaniestates #eruption #bigisland #papayafarmsroad #hawaii #nonifarmsroad #volcano @hawaiitribuneherald @hawaiinewsnow @natgeo @humanesociety #animalrescue
Video clip from June 6 evening of Mileka Lincoln leaving Kapoho area:
#LeilaniEstatesEruption #KilaueaVolcano UPDATE (June 7 at 6:45AM): I took this video while we were out on the water in what was left of Kapoho Bay yesterday. We won’t know if any of these homes are still standing until USGS or the Hawaiʻi County Civil Defense Agency releases new aerial photos or footage. Yesterday, Civil Defense updated their count and said 130 homes have been officially claimed by lava — but the county admits their tally is about 48 hours behind, and that number could be as high as 500 as they originally reported Tuesday night. Here’s the latest from the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory: “Lava fountaining at Fissure 8 continues, with fountain tops reaching heights of 130-210 feet, This activity is feeding a lava channel flowing east to the Kapoho Bay area. Lava is continuing to enter the ocean in the area of the Vacationland subdivision. A late afternoon overflight showed that the ocean entry is creating a vigorous steam plume that is being blown inland to the southwest. The delta that formed at Kapoho Bay extended slightly throughout the day, and a lateral lobe of the flow is pushing slowly north through what remains of the Kapaho Beach Lots subdivision. The northern lobe of the Fissure 8 flow appears to have stalled with only traces of smoke at the flow front, although there is some incandescence in the finger of that lobe that advanced along a low graben a few nights ago. No other fissures are active. Pele's hair and other lightweight volcanic glass from high fountaining of Fissure 8 are falling downwind of the fissure and accumulating on the ground within Leilani Estates. Winds may waft lighter particles to greater distances. Residents are urged to minimize exposure to these volcanic particles, which can cause skin and eye irritation similar to volcanic ash.” A reminder that laze is formed when hot lava hits the ocean sending hydrochloric acid and steam with tiny glass particles into the air. Health hazards of laze include lung damage, and eye and skin irritation. Be aware that the laze plume travels with the wind and can change direction without warning. Stay tuned to @HawaiiNewsNow #HInews #HawaiiNews #HNN #HawaiiNewsNow #WeAreYourSource
Another photographer worth watching, although I would’ve preferred a static photo album to tab through rather than wait for a labored Ken Burns effect.
#LeilaniEstatesEruption #KilaueaVolcano LATEST (June 7 at 11:15 PM): Jaw-dropping images from @AndrewRichardHara, who just landed after flying over the #LERZ tonight. #AndrewRichardHara was invited by Brigadier General Kenneth Hara on a National Guard Blackhawk flight over and around the corners of the current eruption to do an aerial survey of incandescent lava flows and current status of Fissure 8. The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory has just released this update: “Lava fountaining at Fissure 8 continues unabated with fountain tops reported between 170-200 feet. This activity continues to feed a lava channel flowing east towards the ocean entry in the Kapoho Bay area. The noon overflight found that the delta is about 1.2 mi wide in the Vacationland/Waopae area and observed the flow was expanding northward through Kapoho Beachlots. A large area of upwelling offshore suggests the presence of lava flowing on the ocean floor in that area. However, bad weather and poor visibility grounded the late afternoon overflight. The ocean entry is a hazardous area. Hazards include walking on uneven, glassy lava flow surfaces and around unstable, vertical sea cliffs. Venturing too close to an ocean entry on land or the ocean exposes you to flying debris from sudden explosive interaction between lava and water. Also, the lava delta is unstable because it is built on unconsolidated lava fragments and sand. This loose material can easily be eroded away by surf, causing the new land to become unsupported and slide into the sea. In several instances, such collapses have also incorporated parts of the older sea cliff. Additionally, the interaction of lava with the ocean creates "laze", a corrosive seawater plume laden with hydrochloric acid and fine volcanic particles that can irritate the skin, eyes, and lungs. No other fissures are active.” Stay tuned to @HawaiiNewsNow for the very latest developments #HInews #HawaiiNews #HNN #HawaiiNewsNow #WeAreYourSource (Photos: @AndrewRichardHara)