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Volcano La Cumbre of Fernandina Island in Galapagos Erupts

Ecuador Saturday, June 16, 2018 - 13h57

The volcano La Cumbre on Fernandina Island entered a new eruption process, said the Directorate of the Galapagos National Park (PNG) on Saturday.

The eruption of this volcano, almost 1,500 meters high, was confirmed this afternoon by the Geophysical Institute (IG) , the organization that earlier reported that the volcano presented seismic agitation, only nine months since its last process.

volcano la cumbre galapagos eruption 16 June 2018

From 08:37 (Galápagos time) nine earthquakes of magnitude higher than 2.5 were recorded; the largest, of magnitude 4.1, was recorded at 09:22, with an estimated depth of 4 km.

Guardaparques del Canal Bolívar and tour operators in the area reported activity on the northern flank of the volcano. In addition, satellite images show a thermal anomaly on the NNW flank of the volcano.

Fernandina is the youngest island of Galapagos inhabited by land and marine iguanas, endemic rodents, snakes, penguins and finches.

"There are some species that could be affected, however, being a flow (of lava) that is in only one direction, on only one side of the island, the possible impacts that there would be would not have a significant impact on biodiversity," indicated Jorge Carrión, director of the PNG, to the AFP agency.

So far there is a plume of smoke over the volcano's crater and a lava flow down the northern flank. The volcano occupies almost the entire island, which has an area of ​​642 km2.

Carrión explained that the evacuation of animals from the island is not planned. "This is a natural process with which the species that inhabit that island have lived together throughout their lives and it would be wrong for us to intervene in these processes," he said.

The IG will continue to monitor the volcano. "Because Fernandina is a pristine island (without introduced species), the environmental authority will only monitor the changes that this natural geological process produces on the ecosystems," the PNG said in a statement.

source: El Universo

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