Kīlauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes have stopped erupting
US Geological Survey scientists said on Tuesday, December 13, 2022, the two active Hawaiian volcanoes – Kīlauea, active since September 2021, and Mauna Loa erupted with lava fountains on November 27 this year after being silent for 38 years – have stopped popping.
Lava supply from the last active fissure vent on Mauna Loa’s northeast rift zone ceased on Saturday and sulfur dioxide emissions have now declined to background levels near the eruption.
The supply of lava to Kilauea’s Halema’uma’u summit caldera lava lake ceased on Friday, according to the Hawaii Volcano Observatory.
It is not entirely clear whether the contemporary decrease in volcanic activity of the two mountains is a coincidence.
“The two volcanoes are not directly connected”, so in a USGS Twitter Statement, “but could ‘feel’ each other via stress effects. Mauna Loa’s eruption could have allowed Kīlauea to ‘wind down’. That said, Kīlauea’s eruption was already quite tenuous, occurring at very low rates.
Mauna Loa is one of the most active volcanoes on Earth, with 33 eruptions since 1843, but most eruptions only last a few days to weeks, although a few can last months, with longer periods of volcanic rest in between. When last erupted 38 years ago, an open fissure northeast of the Maku’āweoweo caldera, feeding a lava flow for 22 days. The previous eruption in 1975 lasted just 22 hours, after a 25-year period of volcanic dormancy.
Kilauea Volcano has been erupting since 2008 at two locations: at the summit caldera and at the Pu’u ‘ō’ō Crater on the eastern rift zone. In May 2018, a large lava flow destroyed more than 700 residences on its way to the sea. ended. Since then, minor volcanic activity has been limited to Kīlauea’s summit, with a steady supply of lava feeding the lava lake in the caldera.
According to Volcanic Observatory for Mauna Loa, “hot spots may remain near the vent, along channels, and at the flow front for days or weeks as lava flows cool. However, activity eruptive should not return due to past eruptive behavior.”
“There remains potential for this eruption to resume or a new eruption to occur at or near the summit of Kilauea.”