A new era for erupting White Island
Thu, 09 Aug 2012 7:00p.m.
Where is the most dangerous place in New Zealand right now? Tongariro?
Well no one will let you anywhere near that crater right now, but it is not Tongariro - it's White Island, which has also been erupting since Sunday.
GNS had their suspicions, but they didn't categorically know what was happening on the island until chief volcanologist Brad Scott took a trip out to the volcano this morning.
He sighted ash, which means the magma is rising and the volcano is erupting
The vent is now 50 metres wide, and has built what is known as a tuft cone.
As magma rises closer to the surface it forces powerful gases upwards, smashing through rock. This pulverised stone becomes ash.
White Island's most recent eruptive phase began in 1975 and lasted 25 years.
Who knows how long this new phase will last, but it is at the beginning of this cycle that volcanoes like Tongariro and White Island are at their most dangerous.
So is the Bay of Plenty at risk? No volcanic material from this volcano has ever been found on the mainland, so the risk is low.
But as for visiting the island - tourist operators are now advised to take extreme caution.
Watch the video to see Natasha Utting’s exclusive report.
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18/08/2012 11:36:52 a.m.
Its not a "coincidence", everything is connected.
11/08/2012 12:55:04 p.m.
10/08/2012 4:48:28 p.m.
Have lived all my life around this volcano. I very much enjoyed reading this article. I however disagree with the fact that no volcanic material has ever made it to the mainland. Quite a few mornings within its last cycle our town (opotiki) has woken up with large deposits of sulfur all over the roads and houses.
10/08/2012 12:43:18 p.m.
Swadesh wati Kumar wrote:
I think you are an awesome journalist. youn bring to us one of the best documentaries. Congrats.
10/08/2012 12:42:57 p.m.
Te Papa is our national museum but is it now a national disgrace?
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Opotiki in the eastern Bay of Plenty has one sushi shop.The locals love it so much they've gone into battle for its owners.
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