Hawaiʻi Island Starts the New Year with Kīlauea Eruption


U.S. Government Survey

Live footage of Kīlauea’s eruption can be accessed on the U.S. Government Survey’s youtube.

On Thursday, January 5, Kilauea began experiencing volcanic activity at the top of its crater. Since the volcano’s initial eruption, lava has continued flowing out of the crater’s vents, creating a lava lake in the eastern portion of the Halemaʻumaʻu crater, according to the most recent observatory update provided by the U.S. Geological Survey.

Kīlauea is one of the most active volcanoes in Hawaiʻi, as well as one of the most active volcanoes in the world. As of now, Kīlauea’s threat level is labeled as “WATCH”, meaning that the volcano is under close observation, however there is no imminent danger yet. All recent activity remains contained to the crater’s eastern half and the western half’s basement.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the main concern regarding Kīlauea’s recent eruption is that the summit is located near Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park. If volcanic gas blows toward the park, “water vapor (H2O), carbon dioxide (CO2), and sulfur dioxide (SO2)” could make their way into the lungs of residents and tourists. Kīlauea’s vog also creates the potential for agricultural damage and livestock endangerment.

For more information regarding Kīlauea’s safety hazards, refer to: https://www.usgs.gov/observatories/hawaiian-volcano-observatory/hazards

Live feed of Kīlauea’s eruption can be accessed at https://www.youtube.com/usgs/live