U.S. Geological Survey

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Wikipedia Commons

The U.S. Geological Survey is looking for a new home for the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory after it became displaced because of the Kilauea volcano eruption last year.

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Scientists have downgraded the alert level for Hawaii's Kīlauea volcano in response to reduced activity, saying the next eruption is likely a few years away.

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Scientists measuring the thickness of Kilauea volcano's newest lava flows have said molten rock added as much as 180 feet of lava to parts of the Big Island last year. New land created in the ocean reaches as high as 919 feet.

The U.S. Geological Survey released the data last week along with a preliminary map of the flows, the Hawaii Tribune-Herald reported .

U.S. Geological Survey

The United States Geological Survey recently released its “Volcanic Threat Assessment.” That’s an indicator of the potential severity of impacts that could result from future eruptions at various volcanoes. Hawai'i Island’s Kīlauea Volcano was number one on the list – with the greatest potential impact. But that does not mean a new eruption is imminent, even though the volcano erupted continuously from 1983 until early August of this year.

U.S. Geological Survey

Lava continues to flow in the east rift zone of Kīlauea volcano, and several times a week there are new explosions at the summit. While the volcanic activity continues, some are already looking ahead to future development of the area near the volcano, and whether hazard zone maps from the U.S. Geological Survey can help.

U.S. Geological Survey

The eruption at Kīlauea continues to send ash plumes into the sky and push lava into the ocean. While that has destroyed hundreds of homes and forced scores of people into shelters, it is also providing an unprecedented opportunity for scientific research.