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Kamchatka’s volcanoes showing increased activity

December 31, 2012, 19:24 UTC+3

A glow is observed over its crater and fresh lava was seen on the slopes

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PETROPAVLOVSK-KAMCHATSKY, December 31 (Itar-Tass) —— Volcano Kizimen on Russia’s Far Eastern Kamchatka Peninsula has shown signs of activity, after a short lull, a spokesman for the Kamchatka branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences’ Geophysical Service said on Monday.

According to the spokesman, seismic activity has been registered at the volcano, with 357 local quakes reported within the past 24 hours. A glow is observed over its crater and fresh lava was seen on the slopes.

Kizimen’s Aviation Color Code has been changed from Green to Orange, which means that the gases and ash it is spewing might pose danger to aircraft.

Kizimen showed no signs of activity for two weeks, making experts believe that the volcano, which had been active since the autumn of 2010, was calming down.

Kizimen, 2.5 km high, is located 265 km north of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. It is one of 29 active volcanoes of Kamchatka.

Along Kizimen, increased activity is registered at two more Kamchatka’s volcanoes, Shiveluch and Plosky Tolbachik.

Plosky Tolbachik awakened on November 27 after being dormant for 36 years from the moment of its great fissure eruption that was observed in 1975-1976. The height of Plosky Tolbachik is 3,085 metres above sea level. It is located in the south-western sector of the Klyuchevskaya group of volcanoes in the east of Kamchatka 63 kilometres from the Klyuchi settlement and 343 kilometres from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky.

Shiveluch has spewed ash to an altitude of five kilometers above sea level, the Kamchatka branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences’ Geophysical Service reported.

Shiveluch is the northernmost active volcano on the Kamchatka Peninsula. It is located 450 kilometers northeast of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. The absolute height of the volcano is 3,283 meters. The highest point of its active part, called Young Shiveluch, is 2,500 meters above sea level, the diameter of the crater is 1.5 kilometers. Catastrophic eruptions took place in 1864 and 1964, when a large part of the lava dome collapsed and created a devastating debris avalanche. Young Shiveluch has been active since September 1980.

Apart from that, seismic activity has been registered at the volcano Klyuchevskoi, the highest active volcano in Eurasia (4,750 meters) and one of the most active ones in the world. As many as 225 earthquakes have been registered at the giant mount in the past 24 hours. Plumes of steam raised to a height of one kilometer above its summit.

Volcano Klyuchevskoi is situated 360 km north-north-east of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky. The nearest inhabited areas -- Klyuchi Settlement -- is situated 30 km away from the volcano's foot.

Specialists are continuously monitoring Kamchatka’s volcanoes. So far, they pose no threat to neighboring populated localities.


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