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Current Status of Hawaii Island’s Volcanoes Presented in Kona

The Hawaiian Volcano Observatory’s 1912–2012 Centennial—100 Years of Tracking Eruptions and Earthquakes

The current status of Hawai‘i Island’s active volcanoes and how they are monitored will be the topic of a Volcano Awareness Month program in Kailua-Kona on Wednesday, January 11.

The USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory uses a variety of ground- and satellite-based techniques to monitor Hawai‘i’s active volcanoes. Here, an HVO scientist sets up a portable GPS receiver to track surface changes during an island-wide survey of Hawai‘i’s volcanoes.

Mike Poland, a volcanologist with the U.S. Geological Survey’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, will talk about Kīlauea, Mauna Loa, Hualālai, and Mauna Kea in an informative and engaging presentation in the Kealakehe High School Cafeteria, 74-5000 Puuhulihuli Street, in Kailua.  A campus map is available online.  His talk, which is free and open to the public, begins at 7:00 p.m.

Hawai‘i Island is home to five volcanoes, four of which have erupted within the past 10,000 years.  Poland will provide updates on the status of these “active” volcanoes, with particular focus on recent events on Kīlauea, which has been erupting almost continuously since 1983.  He will also talk about how HVO scientists monitor Hawai‘i’s active volcanoes.

According to Poland, Hawaiian volcanoes are among the best-monitored volcanoes in the world.  “Since its founding in 1912, HVO has been at the forefront of developing, testing, and implementing cutting-edge monitoring tools and techniques,” he said.  Poland’s presentation will include an overview of the state-of-the-art techniques now used by HVO to track magma movement within the currently erupting Kīlauea and to watch for changes within the presently-quiet Mauna Loa, Hualālai, and Mauna Kea.

This presentation is one of many programs offered by HVO during Hawai‘i Island’s third annual Volcano Awareness Month (January 2012), and in celebration of HVO’s 100th anniversary. For more information about Poland’s talk, and other HVO Centennial and Volcano Awareness Month events, please visit the HVO website or call (808) 967-8844.

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