Mount Pinatubo placed on high eruption alert as 'volcanic activity' sparks ash warning

The Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre has issued an alert for a “possible eruption” for the volcano in the Philippines.

It comes following images snapped by Japan’s HIMAWARI-8 satellite.

Sharing the report on Twitter, extreme weather hunter James Reynolds said: “Tokyo VAAC have a volcanic ash alert at Pinatubo.

To which meteorologist Kyle Noël replied: “Yeah, this is a suspicious volcanic activity that’s going on at Mt. Pinatubo.

Mr Noel shared an image from the Himawari-8.

He later responded that he thought it was “convection created by orographic lifting rather than a volcanic eruption”.

He noted: “There was a ripple of clouds moving through these mountains.

Usloping/orographic lifting could explain a sudden burst of convection in that area rather than a volcanic eruption.

“A couple of reasons to doubt the alert, lack of earthquakes from seismographs and lack of local reports.

“Anyone on the ground able to confirm whether there’s been an eruption?”

The Pinatubo volcano advisory tweeted: “The Pinatubo Volcano Network recorded seismic and infrasound signals of a weak explosion at Mt Pinatubo between 12:09PM and 12:13PM.

“The event produced a plume that was detected by the Himawari-8 Satellite and reported by the Tokyo Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre.

“The seismic and infrasound signals are not typical of known volcanic processes and are currently being evaluated together with other potential sources.

“There has been very low seismic activity in the past days and geochemical sucky of the Pinatubo Crater Lake in November yielded low diffuse volcanic CO2 flux.”

They told the public to stay away from the area and local government units to “prohibit entry into the crater” until the source of the “explosion event” is known.

This is a breaking story. More to follow.

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