(By Ernesto Cooke) – The UWI -SRC team on the island of St Vincent currently monitoring effusive eruptions at La Soufriere says, steam currently rising from the volcano can produce acid rain.
This steam has volcanic gases like hydrogen chloride and hydrogen fluoride, and when mixed with condensation in the atmosphere, you can get acid rain.
Acid rain can affect vegetation causing ‘burn spots’ to appear, which has been observed in North Leeward, according to the UWI-SRC.
The team stated this is another reason, access to the summit and the volcano is still prohibited as necessary safety precautions must be taken and adhered to.
In December 2020, Short wave infrared data from the European Space Agency (ESA) Copernicus Sentinel-2 satellite identified a thermal anomaly in the La Soufrière volcano, indicating magma close to the surface.
Researchers with Earth Applied Sciences Disasters Program, a NASA department recently detected increased seismic activity at La Soufriere volcano, indicating there may be an imminent volcanic eruption.
On Friday NEMO the National Emergency Management Organization said the dome that broke through the crater floor, on December 27, 2020, on the south-west perimeter of the existing dome, continues to grow within the crater of La Soufrière and has an ellipsoid shape with growth expanding in a westerly direction.
A NASA publication of January 8th 2021 said, the activation of EASDP would aid risk reduction efforts for a potential volcanic eruption, as they closely monitor the region.
Seismic data from the Wallibou station on St Vincent is already streaming into the Seismic Research Centre (SRC).
A webcam providing live feed was installed on January 3, 2021, at the Belmont Observatory.
A second camera, at Georgetown, was successfully installed and Camera and weather station installations, at the summit, are still being pursued.
The La Soufriere volcano’s alert level remains at Orange, and the National Emergency Management Organisation is reminding the public that no evacuation order or notice has been issued.