[Marxism] Massive uptick in Volcanic Activity

Greg McDonald gregmc59 at gmail.com
Mon Nov 1 04:54:15 MDT 2010

Looks like you guys may have missed the explanation:


Indonesian volcano unleashes new powerful eruption
By SLAMET RIYADI Associated Press © 2010 The Associated Press
Nov. 1, 2010, 5:13AM

MOUNT MERAPI, Indonesia — Indonesia's most volatile volcano — one of
22 that have been increasingly active — spewed searing clouds of gas
and debris for hours Monday in its most powerful eruption in a deadly
week. No new casualties were immediately reported.
The new blast came as Indonesia struggles to respond to a tsunami that
devastated a remote chain of islands. The twin disasters, unfolding
simultaneously on opposite ends of the seismically active country,
have killed nearly 500 people and severely tested the government's
emergency response network. In both events, the military has been
called in to help.
Mount Merapi, one of 129 active volcanoes in Indonesia, has killed 38
since it started a week ago. It has erupted many times in the last two
centuries, often with deadly results. In 1994, 60 people were killed,
while in 1930, more than a dozen villages were incinerated, leaving up
to 1,300 dead.
Almost all villagers living along Mount Merapi's once-fertile slopes —
now blanketed by gray ash — have been evacuated to crowded refugee
camps well away from the base, some screaming and crying as they were
carried away by camouflaged soldiers.
During lulls in activity, some have returned to their homes to check
on livestock and crops, but there were no indications any had been
hurt in Monday's blast, said Waluyo Rahardjo, a National Search and
Rescue Agency official.
The eruption was accompanied by several deafening explosions.
As massive clouds spilled from the glowing cauldron and billowed into
the air — continuing for nearly three hours after the blast — debris
and ash cascaded nearly four miles (six kilometers) down the
southeastern slopes, said Subrandrio, an official charged with
monitoring Merapi's activity.
More than 800 miles (1,300 kilometers) to the west, meanwhile, a C-130
transport plane, six helicopters and four motorized boats were
ferrying aid to the most distant corners of the Mentawai Islands,
where last week's tsunami destroyed hundreds of homes, schools,
churches and mosques.
The tsunami death toll had reached 450 by Monday, said Nelis Zuliastri
from the National Disaster Management Agency, with the number of
missing now less than 100.
A military chopper had evacuated badly injured survivors Sunday who
had languished in an overwhelmed hospital with only paracetamol to
ease their pain, said Ade Edward, a disaster management official.
Among them was a baby girl born in a shelter after the tsunami and a
12-year-old girl with a life-threatening chest wound.
Indonesia, a vast island nation of 235 million people, straddles a
series of fault lines and volcanoes known as the Pacific "Ring of
Fire" and is prone to earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.
The fault line in the earth's surface that caused last week's
7.7-magnitude earthquake and killer wave that followed — and also the
2004 tsunami that killed 230,000 people in a dozen countries — is the
meeting point of the Eurasian and Pacific tectonic plates that have
been pushing against and under each other for millions of years,
causing huge stresses to build up. It runs the length of the west
coast of Sumatra island,
Both earthquakes and volcanos can be related to movements in the
overlapping plates that form the earth's crust. As plates slide
against or under each other, molten rock from the layer of mantle can
break the surface via a volcano, or create energy released in an
There is some debate as to whether earthquakes can trigger volcanic
eruptions. But with Merapi's eruption 24 hours after that tremor, the
government wasn't taking chances.
It has raised alert levels of 21 other volcanoes — many of which have
shown an increase in activity, rumbling and belching out heavy black
ash — to the second- and third- highest levels in the last two months,
mostly as a precaution, said Syamsul Rizal, a state volcanologist.
Indonesia has several volcanos smoldering at any given time, but
another government volcanologist Gede Swantika said there are normally
only five to 10 on the third-highest alert level, indicating an
increase in seismic and other activity, and none at all at the
second-highest, signifying an eruption is possible within two weeks.
He said monitors noticed more volcanos were exhibiting seismic
activity starting Sept. 2.
"We can say this is quite extraordinary, about 20 at the same time,"
Swantika said. "We have to keep an eye on those mountains. ... But I
cannot say or predict which will erupt. What we can do is monitor
Geologist Brent McInnes said as he hadn't seen the raw data but would
find such a rash of volcanic activity significant.
"If it's true that there are over 20 volcanos demonstrating increased
levels of seismic activity, then that is something we should pay
attention to," said McInnes, a professor at Australia's Curtin
University who has done extensive volcanic research in Indonesia.
He said such an increase could indicate "maybe there is a major plate
restructuring going on, and that would be significant."

On Sun, Oct 31, 2010 at 10:49 AM, Serhiy Kutnii <mnkutster at gmail.com> wrote:
> ======================================================================
> Rule #1: YOU MUST clip all extraneous text when replying to a message.
> ======================================================================
> Well, I think the less risky assumption is that this uptick is just a
> normal oscillation.
> It's a rule that such things as volcanic activity are not constant but
> slightly vary over the time around their average values (compare the
> solar activity cycles).

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