NEW BRITAIN, PAPUA NEW GUINEA - Ulawun Volcano erupted today with a VEI 5 paroxsysmal eruption, ejecting ash over 50,000 feet into the air today, creating a dire situation for the nearby villages of Ulamona, and Sule. Ashfall is widespread, falling on neighboring islands.
Plinian style paroxsysmal eruption of Ulawun - 6/26/2019 @ approx 8am. Photographer unknown.
Ulawun eruption from air - Photographer credit Eroli Tamara
This is the largest eruption of Ulawun since it's 2000 episode. Eruptions of VEI 5 or larger can affect global climate, should enough gas and ash be ejected high into the stratosphere. The 1996 eruption of Mt. Pinatubo caused such an effect, lowering the global temperature average by a couple degrees for around 1 year. These effects are quite temporary however, and do nothing in the long run to counter man-made climate change, contrary to some bad reporting.Deep eruption plume of Mount #Ulawun volcano🌋 Papua New Guinea 🇵🇬is expanding as the sun goes down, with bits of it beginning to move southward in light northerly upper level winds as seen by Himawari-8🛰️with RAMMB Slider. #eruption #volcano #PapuaNewGuinea pic.twitter.com/zJfSvlFW6O— YouStorm (@YouStormorg) June 26, 2019
A statement I obtained from USGS indicates this was a VEI 4, sub-plinian eruption, with a maximum height of 43,000, not 50,000 ft as previously reported. The eruption is ongoing, and USGS is on site with local government to assist with disaster mitigation.