Since August, Japan has had one more island, thanks to the eruption of an underwater volcano, according to NHK. Thirty-five years ago, another island formed there, but it only existed for two months.
A kilometer-wide island rose from the waves after an underwater volcano erupted in the Ogasawara archipelago in the northwestern Pacific, about 1,000 kilometers south of the main Japanese archipelago, reports the NHK television channel.
The Japan Coast Guard (JCG) discovered the island on August 15, according to the channel. Two days earlier, at around 6:20 a.m., the Himawari weather satellite had detected a plume of smoke and ash rising from the submarine volcano of Fukutoku-Okanoba, located about 50 kilometers south of Iwo Jima. According to HNK, the volcano erupted for the first time since February 2010.
The smoke reached an altitude of 16,000 meters. The Japanese coast guard quoted by the channel noted that “the eruption was so large that it was not possible to make detailed observations near” the volcano.
The column of smoke then narrowed, but the volcano continues to spew stones within a radius of some 60 kilometers. Meteorologists are calling on ships to exercise caution in this section of the Pacific. No damage was reported.
A region of ephemeral islands
The new piece of land is far from the first to be created by the Fukutoku-Okanoba volcano.
A volcanic eruption makes a new island in Japan – videos recorded there in 1905, 1914, and 1986, recalls the Volcano Discovery site.
The 1905 island was named Shin-Iwo-Jima (“New Volcanic Island”). The island of 1986 existed only two months before disappearing under the effect of waves and wind, specifies the Japanese meteorological agency (JMA).