May 21, 2022

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A volcanologist is trying to find answers to why the island is shaking

A volcanologist is trying to find answers to why the island is shaking

The island of São Jorge is part of the autonomous region of the Aresos Islands, which consists of nine volcanic islands, and has now attracted all the attention of volcanologist Fatima Vivieros (44).

In just seven days, 14,000 small earthquakes up to 3.3 on the Richter scale were recorded, and scientists are scratching their heads.

Viveiros and other experts fear the earthquakes could trigger a volcanic eruption for the first time in more than 200 years, or a powerful earthquake.

Reuters was the first to report the case.

Vittorio Zanon and Fatma Vivieros measure natural gases in Roses. Photo: Pedro Nunes/Reuters

It lives on an active volcanic system.

Since she was a child, she dreamed of working in this field, and now the knowledge of Viveiros can help save her home.

“My house is on an active volcanic system,” Vivieros told the news agency.

She works at the Volcanic Seismic Monitoring Center (CIVISA) in the area, and now has to make sure to separate her feelings from the job.

When something happens in our homes, we must be a little cold-blooded, so that our feelings do not affect our thoughts. But the sentiment is there because it’s my home, my people, says Vivieros.

Fear of volcanic eruptions

Carbon dioxide and sulfur indicate volcanic activity at St. George’s, and for several days Viveiros and her colleagues have been grappling with harsh weather conditions in search of answers. The team says levels so far are normal.

One of the possible scenarios on the table is that we see something similar to what happened in La Palma, says Viferas.

The sharp increase in seismic activity is reminiscent of the earthquakes that occurred before the eruption of the Cumbre Vieja volcano in La Palma last summer, which lasted 85 days and destroyed thousands of homes. This island is located only 1,400 kilometers from St. George.

On Wednesday, CIVISA raised the risk level to 4, which means that according to Vivieras, there is a real possibility of an outbreak. Both the Spanish and international teams are ready to contribute in this matter.

 Photo: Pedro Nunes/Reuters

Photo: Pedro Nunes/Reuters

Escape from the island

Azores President Jose Bolero reported that twice as many earthquakes were recorded in the past week than during the entire spring.

– It is clearly an anomaly, he told the press.

So far, 1,500 people have chosen to leave the island, despite the fact that the authorities have not stated that an eruption is imminent. They do not know when they can return home.

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