The EU’s Sentinel-2 satellite captured a stunning image this week, of the intensifying volcanic eruption on the island of La Palma. The photo was shot on Sunday, October 10, 2021, and showed new 2,264-degree Fahrenheit lava streams inching their way toward the sea.
The eruption, which began on September 19, has sent boulders the size of houses from the Cumbre Vieja volcano’s crater, and triggered earthquake tremors measuring up to 3.8 magnitude. It has leveled at least 1,186 buildings so far with much more destruction predicted as the volcanic stream pushes toward the neighborhood of Todoque, part of the Los Llanos de Aridane municipality on the southwest of the island. The volcano’s destruction is a mere estimate because smoke plumes obstruct the view.
Sulfur dioxide plumes from the volcano have already crossed the Atlantic Ocean to reach the Caribbean. A change in wind direction is not sending the noxious gas stream over Northern Africa. Thus far, large amounts of dust have not been injected into the stratosphere where they could have “long-lasting effects on weather and climate.”
Scientists say the volcano shows no signs of going to sleep and the eruption could continue for months.
• La Palma volcanic eruption as seen from space (magnified) via European Union, Copernicus Sentinel-2 imagery with usage type - Commercial license
• La Palma volcanic eruption as seen from space via European Union, Copernicus Sentinel-2 imagery with usage type - Commercial license