When you think of the Andamans, you probably think SCUBA diving and pristine beaches; the Barren Island volcano isn’t really the first thing that comes to mind. In 2017 though, this volcano has been under the scrutiny of several researchers and scientists, who have noticed that the once dormant volcano, has now started showing spurts of activity.
Researchers from the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) based in Goa, were gathering sea floor samples in the Andaman Basin near the volcano, when they noticed it spewing ash. After this observation, the researchers retreated to a safe distance, and kept a track of the volcanic activity. It was then that they realized the volcano emitted ash clouds in the daytime, but in the night, lava streamed down the volcano.
After their initial observation, the team observed the volcano a few days later as well, to confirm this burst of activity. Again, they witnessed the same, and began to collect samples within the vicinity of the volcano. The Huffington Post reported that the researchers recovered, ‘black pyroclastic material representing proximal volcanic ejecta.’ The mouth of the crater was also covered in clouds, in an otherwise clear sky.
An official statement has also been released by the NIO in Goa, to the public, “The only live volcano in the Andaman and Nicobar islands is erupting once again. The Barren Island volcano, located 140-km north-east of Port Blair, dormant for more than 150 years started erupting in 1991 and has since then shown intermittent activity.” With all the climate change Earth is undergoing the revival of a dormant volcano is definitely not a surprise but whether it should be a cause for concern is yet to be determined.
Feature Image Credit: Hindustan Times