New island forms off Japan after underwater volcano erupts

Following the powerful eruption of an undersea volcano off the coast of Japan, a new island of about 1 km in diameter has emerged. The underwater volcano Fukutoku-Okanoba, located 50 km off the coast of Iwo Jima in the Ogasawara Islands in the Pacific Ocean, erupted last Friday, the Japan Times reported, following statements by the Japanese Coast Guard.

There is no particular danger to people living along the coast, although the country’s meteorological agency has issued warnings about the potential danger of smoke and ash deposits that could form, especially in waters near the coast.
However, experts expect the eruption to continue over the next few days. In fact, the material emitted from the underwater volcano was noticed by members of the Japan Coast Guard as it floated on the sea up to 60 km away in a northwest direction.

This is not the first time that a new island has appeared in the region as a result of the evolution of submarine volcanoes. Already in 1904, 1914 and 1986, new islands were formed, which were then submerged over time by waves and currents, as the elevation above sea level was not sufficient.
The island that formed following an eruption of the same volcano in 1986, for example, disappeared after about two months. If this last island remains on the surface, which is not unlikely if the lava flow continues in the next few days, it will most likely be added to the Japanese territory after the recognition that usually takes place according to international standards for a natural formation like this one.

 

 

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