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Hawaii's Erupting Kilauea Volcano Is Now Spouting Blue Flames of Burning Methane

26 May, 2018, 07:22 | Author: Kristen Ingram
  • Workers in Hawaii plugging energy wells as lava flows nearby

Eerie blue flames flared from the ground on Hawaii's Big Island on Tuesday night (May 22), marking a rarely seen phenomenon that can arise during volcanic eruptions.

U.S. Geological Survey geophysicist Mike Poland says small ash explosions are coming from the summit intermittently as lava keeps flowing into the ocean.

Still, "cracks near the Puna Geothermal Company are active and producing lava that slowly flows into the property, which destroyed the old Hawaii Geothermal Project in an area adjacent to the PGV", it said.

Hinkle said she's grateful her home has been spared from the lava, but the toxic gas is unbearable.

Hinkle, 46, who works in landscaping and horticulture, said she's financially stressed but can't leave now. Hawaii County Civil Defense announced Thursday the situation remains stable. A flammable gas called pentane is used as part of the process, though officials earlier this month removed 50,000 gallons (190,000 liters) of the gas from the plant to reduce the chance of explosions.

Geothermal energy is also considered a clean resource as it doesn't generate greenhouse gas emissions, said Bridget Ayling, the director of Nevada's Great Basin Center for Geothermal Energy. Since May 3, over a dozen fissures have opened up along the east rift zone of the Kilauea volcano, destroying almost 50 structures.

Workers in Hawaii plugging energy wells as lava flows nearby

Clinton and some others had stayed behind, maintaining a vigil to protect the neighbourhood from a fissure that had opened up several hundred metres away. One person suffered a leg injury after being struck by a "lava bomb".

That information includes detecting active fissures and fires, the height and composition of volcanic plumes, ground "deformation" caused by the movement of magma and images of ash and sulfur dioxide plumes, NASA said in their release.

Hawaiian Volcano Observatory reports eruption activity continues in the Lower East Rift Zone.

The ash, vog and the lava haze - laze - produced at the coastline represent breathing hazards for anyone unlucky enough to be standing downwind, which you can track via these vog forecasts.

HILO An air evacuation of the portions of Lower Puna that are threatened by the Kilauea Volcano eruption could be accomplished within four hours if that becomes necessary because of damage to ground transportation routes, according to Hawaii Army National Guard commander Brig.

"We are kind of in this steady state", said Wendy Stovall, a scientist at the US Geographical Survey.

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