The Taal Volcano on the island of Luzon, Philippines has erupted, 43 years after its last one. The volcano has been spitting ash and lava since Sunday, with lava even shooting half-a-mile into the sky on Tuesday. Japan Meteorological Agency Himawari-8 satellite captured shocking imagery of the volcano eruption from space.
The extreme intensity of the eruption is visible in the images.
As the volcano expels smoke and lava, a large white representation appears on the map.
An animation of the satellite data, released by NASA’s Earth Observatory, shows the volcanic plume as it spread over the course of January 12 and 13.
The volcano is emitting sulphur dioxide in its eruptive plume.
Authorities have warned locals to use face masks or wet clothes to avoid breathing in affected air or small particles of ash.
The eruption has also brought a new spate of earthquakes to the mountain’s flanks.
The Philippine Seismic Network has detected at least 144 earthquakes in the area since January 12.
According to PHIVOLCS, 44 of the earthquakes were big enough to be felt.
Beyond the dangers of ash and toxic gases, Taal sits on a large lake.
A sudden eruption could create a dangerous tsunami that would swamp nearby towns and villages.
More eruptive activity is possible in the coming days.
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The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology said it supported a “total evacuation” of people who are within a 14km radius of the Taal.
Taal underwent frequent eruptions throughout the mid-1960s until 1977.
In 2006, 2008, 2010 and 2011, the volcano periodically trembled with earthquakes and occasionally showed increased activity.
On January 12, the volcano made itself known with a steam-driven eruption that sent ash 14 kilometres into the air.
The steam eruption was followed by the appearance of a gushing lava fountain.
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