Fewer quakes but high levels of sulfur dioxide observed at Taal Volcano in last 24 hours

Published July 14, 2021, 9:35 AM

by Ellalyn De Vera-Ruiz

Only six volcanic tremors that lasted 12 minutes were recorded at Taal Volcano in the past 24 hours, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said on Wednesday, July 14.

However, high levels of volcanic sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions that generated 1.5-kilometer-high steam-rich plumes were still observed above Taal Volcano’s main crater.

As of July 13, Tuesday, the average SO2 emission of Taal Volcano was measured at 4,184 tonnes.

Its record-high sulfur dioxide emission was 22,628 tonnes on July 4.

Phivolcs said that Taal Volcano remains at Alert Level 3 due to continuous “magmatic unrest.” It has been under this status since July 1.

“At Alert Level 3, magma extruding from the main crater could drive explosive eruption,” Phivolcs said.

The public is prohibited from entering the entire Taal Volcano Island, which is a permanent danger zone.

Phivolcs also advised those in the high-risk barangays of Agoncillo and Laurel in Batangas to remain in evacuation centers due to hazards of pyroclastic density currents and volcanic tsunami in case of strong eruptions.

“All activities on Taal Lake should not be allowed at this time,” it added.

Communities around the Taal lakeshores were also advised to remain vigilant and take precautionary measures against possible airborne ash and vog.

Phivolcs asked residents around Taal Lake to “calmly” prepare for possible evacuation should Taal Volcano’s unrest intensifies.