alaska volcano observatory

Candace Shaack

After showing signs of restlessness, Pavlof Volcano is back at a normal alert level.

The Alaska Volcano Observatory issued an "advisory" for Pavlof last month, following small explosions at its summit 36 miles northeast of Cold Bay. Since then, there have been no further signs of unrest, and scientists downgraded the volcano to "normal" last week.

Zoe Sobel/KUCB

This week, Gov. Mike Dunleavy signed a bill that provides permanent fund dividends of $1,600, while maintaining vetoes on funding for programs like Medicaid and the Alaska Marine Highway System. 

With the budget now set, communities across the Aleutian chain are bracing for the effects of statewide cuts — some passed by the Legislature, others imposed through the governor's vetoes.

Max Kaufman/Alaska Volcano Observatory/University of Alaska Fairbanks, Geophysical Institute

 

Scientists have had a hard time monitoring Bogoslof volcano since it started erupting in December. The island is so small, there is no equipment on the volcano, making it difficult to predict eruptions.

No one lives on Bogoslof – the closest human neighbors are 60 miles away in Unalaska. Scientists monitor from afar and they’ve had a lot to monitor lately. The volcano has erupted more than 40 times since December.

Courtesy Jerry Morris

 

The news may sound familiar: There’s a volcano erupting in the Aleutian chain that’s a refuge for marine mammals and sea birds. But it isn’t Bogoslof, it’s Kasatochi — a volcano near Adak that erupted for the first time in modern memory in 2008. That eruption has given scientists the opportunity to study how life returns after cataclysmic destruction.

Kasatochi Island was an inactive volcano. It wasn’t supposed to erupt.

 

Senator Lisa Murkowski wants to bolster the nation’s volcano monitoring system. The bill Murkowski is sponsoring, introduced Monday, would modernize existing monitoring networks and create a 24-7 volcano watch office to keep an eye on active volcanoes across the country. Plus, it would create a connected system — the National Volcano Early Warning System — where information from the nation’s five volcano observatories would live.

Pages