Sequestration Limits Alaska Volcano Observatory Coverage

Sequestration of federal spending is going to mean a change in volcano monitoring. The Alaska Volcano Observatory watches the volcanoes because ash cloud eruptions that get up high enough can be a severe hazard to intercontinental aviation. But maintenance of the seismic network has been repeatedly reduced due to state and federal budget reductions, and just 120 of almost 200 seismic monitors in the state are in working condition.

The Observatory announced Friday that it will no longer seismically monitor Little Sitkin, Ukinrek Maars and Ugashik-Peulik volcanoes with real-time equipment. They will have to rely on satellite data, infra-sound and reports from pilots and others to detect eruptions.

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