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Alaska’s Mt. Redoubt could erupt again

Volcanoes conjure up images of a time long ago, perhaps Pompeii or faraway places on the world map. But, volcanic activity on the United States map and especially Alaska is not the first thing that comes to mind. Scientists and seismologists are now speculating that a volcano in Anchorage, Alaska is on the verge of eruption. The Alaskan volcano, which has previously erupted, named Mt. Redoubt has been active for a millennium and has erupted five times since 1900.

The first early report of the volcanic eruption was in 1778 by Captain James Cook. In 1989 the most violent eruption was recorded, where the volcano erupted December 14, 1989 and continued to erupt for six months. The volcano last erupted violently on March 22, 2009 late in the evening. It was the first eruption in 20 years, since the 1989 explosions.

This year the scientists spotted a hole in the side of the glacier side of the volcano and began to monitor seismic data 24 hours a day to be sure it could warn surrounding communities of the threat. The Alaska Volcano Observatory then decided to change the threat of the volcano to an alert level of orange.

The emissions from eruptions of this kind mainly consist of water vapor, but can also contain carbon dioxide and sulfur dioxide, which can be harmful to children, the elderly and those with respiratory problems.

Scientists fear that the seismic activity is similar to that of the series of the 1989 to 1990 eruptions. There is a growing lava dome that has been steadily increasing.

The volcano last showed a significant eruption on April 4, 2009 and is looking as if it will erupt again at any moment. Mount Redoubt is proving to be one of the most actively monitored volcanoes on the US map currently and residents watch and hope everyday that eruptions of 20 years ago will not be repeated.

posted by Aisha in Environment and have No Comments

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