Ten years ago, at 12.51pm, on 22 February 2011, the city of Christchurch was struck by a magnitude 6.2 earthquake.
A series of short-lived, low-energy steam explosions occurred on 19 February 2021 at Whakaari / White Island following a small increase in volcanic tremor levels. These explosions took place over about 100 minutes. These small events do not appear to have produced any traces of ash locally. Since the event, activity has returned to low-level. The Volcanic Alert Level remains at 1.
2020 was an incredibly challenging year. The rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic saw Aotearoa New Zealand plunged into lockdown. But natural hazards don’t respect lockdowns, so our teams continued to work 24/7 monitoring New Zealand’s geological hazards
A National Advisory: Tsunami activity has been cancelled for New Zealand following the magnitude 7.7 earthquake that occurred southeast of Loyalty Islands at 2021-02-11 2:20 AM
Remote monitoring of the vent area at Whakaari / White Island that erupted in December 2019 has revealed that the temperatures of gas emissions has declined from over 700 oC to 300 oC in the last year. Recent observations suggest no eruptive activity since a series of minor steam explosions on 29 December 2020. Current activity is still characterised by steam and gas emissions at moderate-low levels. The Volcanic Alert Level remains at 1.
A swarm of shallow earthquakes has occurred in the Okataina Volcanic Centre, Bay of Plenty, this morning – the two largest were a M4.5 and a M4.9. The larger event was widely felt across the upper North Island with more than 5200 felt reports.
General activity at Mt Ruapehu has decreased over the past two weeks. Volcanic gas emissions are back to normal levels and volcanic tremor declined. While the crater lake temperature remains high, the period of moderate to heightened volcanic unrest has now ended. The Volcanic Alert Level at Mt Ruapehu is lowered to Level 1.
A series of short-lived, low energy steam explosions occurred on 29 December 2020 at Whakaari / White Island over a period of ~ 30 mins. This small event consisted of at least 20 individual pulses and may have produced traces of ash locally in the steam plume for a few minutes. Since the event, activity has returned to low-level. The Volcanic Alert Level remains at 1.
During the past week, the temperature of the crater lake (Te Wai ā-moe) at Mt Ruapehu has decreased from 43 to 41 °C. The level of volcanic tremor continues to be moderate to strong and a small number of shallow volcanic earthquakes have been recorded. While the crater lake may have stopped heating, volcanic activity at Mt Ruapehu remains elevated. The Volcanic Alert Level remains at Level 2 and the Aviation Colour Code remains at Yellow.
Crater Lake (Te Wai ā-moe) continues heating and is now 43 °C. The heating has been accompanied by bursts of volcanic tremor and a marked increase in the amount of gas passing through the crater lake. The volcanic alert level has been raised to Level 2 and the Aviation Colour code changed to Yellow.