Understanding Volcano Hazards and Preventing Volcanic

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volcanoes that pose a significant threat to air traffic completely lack the ground sensors. necessary for basic monitoring Furthermore monitoring sensors currently deployed are. becoming outdated and many dangerous volcanoes are only monitored at a minimal level with. regional networks of sparsely spaced seismometers Consequently the VHP must deploy. adequate monitoring equipment when a volcano exhibits signs of significant activity and. scientists and civil authorities are placed in the position of playing catch up as a volcano s. unrest increases with scientists trying to install instruments and civil authorities struggling to. develop and implement civil defense measures before the situation worsens Inevitably this. manner of response results in failing to monitor the early stages of volcanic unrest which. provide crucial timely information needed to forecast the behavior of the volcano. The Office of Management and Budget OMB evaluated VHP in 2003 to establish the use of. PART to track program performance The OMB found that the VHP role is clearly defined and. unique from other Federal State local or private entities As a result of the PART evaluation. three intermediate outcome measures and four intermediate output measures are now tracked in. support of the intermediate outcome of providing information to assist communities in managing. risks from natural hazards Also in the course of the evaluation it was recommended that the. VHP develop plans for a National Volcano Early Warning System NVEWS to prioritize and. coordinate the future investment required for the Nation s volcano monitoring infrastructure As. a first step a report released in April 2005 assessed the relative threat posed by 169 geologically. active volcanic centers within the United States and summarized a gap analysis of the monitoring. level at each volcanic center in light of the threat assessment. The 5 year goals of the VHP for the period FY2004 FY2008 comprise eight priority goals and. objectives, 1 0 Complete NVEWS planning and install new and develop existing geophysical and. geochemical monitoring networks on dangerous volcanoes commensurate with the threat. each poses to ensure reliable real time information on critical parameters such as earthquake. activity ground deformation and emission of volcanic gases. 2 0 Conduct detailed geological field investigations of volcanoes and use Geographic. Information System GIS technology to enhance hazard assessments hazard zonation. mapping probabilistic eruption forecasting and an overall understanding of volcanologic. magmatic and hydrologic processes, 3 0 Conduct experiments and systematic studies to establish a sound theoretical and empirical. basis for understanding volcano processes and related hydrothermal and surface flowage. 4 0 Utilize Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar InSAR data to systematically characterize. the deformation field at hazardous volcanoes and volcanic regions This goal will be. achieved through partnerships with other USGS programs and other agencies. 5 0 Reduce volcano risk abroad through the Volcano Disaster Assistance Program VDAP an. interagency partnership between USGS and USAID Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance. OFDA by infrastructure development technology transfer and training in volcano. monitoring geological investigations and hazard assessment in other countries. 6 0 Build and expand databases on volcanism in the U S and abroad suitable for use in. assessing potential volcanic activity and threat Databases include historical information. about volcanic unrest and eruptions maps geochemical and geophysical data hazards. analyses and populations and infrastructure at risk. 7 0 Deliver effective products and services and provide timely access to VHP information. 8 0 Conduct strategic hiring and strengthen partnerships and communication with universities to. maintain core capabilities enhance scientific and technical coordination and exchange and. promote educational opportunities for students, These goals are built on recent scientific accomplishments and advances in technology and. present important opportunities to further advance scientific understanding through multi. disciplinary research and as a consequence reduce our Nation s growing volcanic risk The. goals are interlinked and relate directly to the VHP PART measures by enhancing the ability of. the VHP to provide information to assist communities in managing risks from natural hazards. Development for an NVEWS and databases on volcanic unrest and impacts Program Goals 1. and 6 will expedite access and analysis of data during periods of crisis so that information can. be more rapidly provided to the public Program Goal 7 Real time seismic monitoring at. distant but frequently active volcanoes and expanded monitoring networks enhanced with. broadband seismometers continuous GPS and tiltmeters InSAR and other sensors Program. Goals 1 and 4 will provide new insight into 1 how distant earthquakes trigger volcanic. activity 2 how magmatic and hydrothermal processes produce volcanic uplift and subsidence. and 3 where migration paths of magma and hydrothermal fluids are located beneath volcanoes. Similarly our understanding of volcanic processes will be advanced by developing methods to. remotely analyze multiple species of volcanic gases by determining precise ages of prehistoric. volcanic events by studying magma ascent paths and eruption triggers by predicting flowage. paths and stability of slopes by assessing event probabilities and by analyzing field data with. GIS Program Goals 2 and 3 The improved understanding of volcanic processes generated by. these activities will translate into more accurate assessments better interpretation of volcanic. unrest and more reliable eruption forecasts Program Goal 7 To achieve these goals the VHP. must maintain appropriate expertise and expand capabilities through partnerships and strategic. hiring Program Goals 5 and 8,Introduction, Within the United States 169 volcanic centers have erupted within the last 10 000 years and are. deemed capable of eruption in the future In the past 200 years alone more than 50 of these. volcanoes have erupted many repeatedly In the twentieth century volcanic eruptions in Alaska. California Hawaii and Washington have caused significant economic disruption long term. environmental damage and loss of life Several of these eruptions led to the creation of national. parks and monuments that are among the most popular in the Nation In other countries. eruptions have caused great loss of life displaced large numbers of people and wildlife induced. short term climate perturbations and affected U S investments and international relations. Hazardous volcanic activity will continue to occur and the threat to lives and property is. increasing with the growth in population and development near volcanoes and the increase in. national and international air traffic over volcanic regions. Volcanic eruptions create hazardous conditions which severely affect people and human. infrastructure near the volcano in downstream valleys and thousands of miles away. Pinatubo Tephra Clark Air Base Phillipines Photograph taken in 1991. by Ed Wolfe USGS,Ash covered DC 10 Cubi Point Naval Air Station.
Lahar damage Philippines from Mt Pinatubo 1991,Philippines Photograph by R L Roberts. Lava flow west of Royal Gardnes subdivision,Hawaii Photograph taken in 1983 by R W Decker. Before 4 23 1990 and after 6 13 1990 photographs of Kalapana Store in area inundated by lava. flows from Kilauea Volcano in 1999 Kalapana Hawaii Photographs by J D Griggs USGS. Bicyclist wearing dustmask in Anchorage Alaska following eruption of Mount Spurr and tephra fall in city. Photograph taken in 1992 by Richard Emanuel, The capability of the USGS in the field of volcano hazards has increased dramatically since the. explosive eruption of Mount St Helens Washington in 1980 and the contemporaneous volcanic. unrest of Long Valley caldera California Prior to these events the only U S volcano observatory. was in Hawaii and only two volcanoes Kilauea and Mauna Loa were monitored at a significant. level By the end of 2003 the VHP supported five volcano observatories and monitored 46 of the. Nation s dangerous volcanoes with real time instrumented networks The creation of the Volcano. Disaster Assistance Program in 1986 an interagency cooperative program between the USGS and. USAID Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance OFDA has helped 16 countries reduce volcanic. risk during 20 significant volcano emergencies most notably the 1991 eruption of Mount Pinatubo. in the Philippines where tens of thousands of lives and hundreds of millions of dollars in U S. assets were saved, This 5 year plan builds on this increased capability and addresses the U S Department of the. Interior s DOI Serving Communities strategic goal of protecting lives resources and property by. making information available to communities to use in developing volcanic hazard mitigation. preparedness and avoidance plans and support the Geology Strategic Plan 2001 2010 goals of. conducting geologic hazards assessments for mitigation planning and providing short term. prediction of geologic disasters and rapidly characterize their effects When realized the plan will. enable the VHP to 1 more accurately interpret volcanic unrest and forecast eruptive behavior 2. identify and assess volcano hazards and 3 better understand the magmatic precursors of eruptions. in the diverse tectonic settings of the nation and the world. The continuing scientific quest of the VHP is to learn to distinguish signs of volcanic activity that. lead to eruptions from those of intermittent unrest discern more clearly the factors that determine. the onset duration style explosivity and end of eruptions and develop better methods for. assessing and communicating long and short term hazard potential. New volcanic unrest and eruptions including significant changes in ongoing eruptions quickly. modify short term objectives and priorities of the VHP and partners on short notice For volcanoes. with an existing monitoring network a period of heightened unrest may require the installation of. additional instruments in order to better track the activity Work plans may be redirected to deal. with short term hazards provide warnings and disseminate general information about the activity. When a volcano that lacks an adequate network of real time instruments awakens the VHP must. establish an adequate network if feasible Internal review collaboration with partners and. universities and a clear understanding of VHP s mission facilitate a sudden redirection of. resources when necessary, New episodes of activity are in essence unplanned opportunities to test hypotheses of magma.
migration and to analyze eruptive processes and hazards Eruptions and magma intrusions allow. scientists to examine and develop new models of volcanic behavior and to develop and test new. tools for monitoring active volcanoes Dramatic improvements to scientific understanding of. volcanoes are the result of careful observations and analysis of volcanic activity Thus modern. volcano monitoring networks and scientific capability to document new eruptive activity on the. ground are crucial in improving the reliability of eruption forecasts. The VHP must expand partnerships and adjust the scientific balance in its workforce to implement. and maintain an NVEWS The program has a long tradition of applying diverse scientific and. technical specialties to meet its mission and will continue to build on this strength by better. integrating its activities with those of other groups within and outside the USGS. Restless activity triggers response Three Sisters Oregon. In April 2001 a broad area of ongoing uplift centered 5 km west of South Sister volcano in the. central Oregon Cascade Range was detected using newly proven satellite based Interferometric. Synthetic Aperture Radar InSAR The discovery of more than 15 cm uplift since 1998 resulted in. an immediate enhanced monitoring effort 2001 to present This effort is directed toward. identifying the cause tracking subsequent ground movement earthquakes and chemical changes in. spring water and keeping Federal land managers and State and county officials informed about the. status of the activity and potential volcano hazards The area of uplift is located in the Three. Sisters Wilderness which requires detailed planning with the U S Forest Service for the. installation and maintenance of radio telemetered instruments and conducting ground surveys with. minimal or no impact to this sensitive area Monitoring data suggest the ongoing uplift results. from the slow accumulation of magma 5 to 7 km below the surface A hazard assessment Volcano. Hazards in the Three Sisters Region Oregon which was published in 1999 provides context for. evaluation of potential hazards Continued vigilance is necessary to detect additional activity that. is certain to occur should magma rise to the surface. Wrapped above and unwrapped below interferograms for the Three Sisters area for the period 1995 to 2001. Each fringe color band in the upper image represents 2 83 cm of satellite to ground range change mostly uplift. Acknowledgments, This 5 year plan was compiled and edited by John S Pallister Steven R Brantley and James E. Quick The writing team also included William C Evans John W Ewert Marianne C Guffanti. Steven E Ingebritsen Margaret T Mangan Terry E Keith Keith R Prince and Jeffery C Wynn. Understanding Volcano Hazards and Preventing Volcanic Disasters A Science Strategy for the Volcano Hazards Program U S Geological Survey 2004 2008 Executive Summary With more than 169 geologically active volcanoes the United States is among the most volcanically active countries in the world During the twentieth century volcanic eruptions have caused substantial economic and societal

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