Hawaii volcano eruption: Satellite images show DEVASTATING impact of Mount Kilauea

HOLLYN JOHNSON  Tribune-Herald Lava continues to fountain from fissure No. 8 Wednesday in Leilani Estates

Lava filled Kapoho Bay and created land that now juts out almost a mile from the former shoreline.

A report from the U.S. Geological Survey's Hawaii Volcano Observatory said lava "continues unabated" from Fissure 8, near the most populated area, with lava shooting as high as 200 feet. The fast-moving lava poured into low-lying coastal Hawaii neighbourhoods in the space of just two days this week, destroying hundreds of homes.

The latest estimate of property losses from Kilauea, one of the world's most active volcanoes, far surpasses the 215 structures consumed by lava during more than 30 years of an earlier eruption cycle that began in 1983.

"This is the hottest lava we've seen during this eruption", Wendy Stovall, a scientist with USGS told CNN affiliate Hawaii News Now.

An astonishing 12,000 earthquakes have been recorded in Hawaii since the island nation's Kilauea volcano erupted in early May. Molten rock has entirely covered the neighborhood of "Vacationland" on Hawaii's big island as it continues to spread into nearby Kapoho Bay.

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Vacationland had about 150 homes and Kapoho, about 350 homes.

An estimated 2,500 people have been displaced by evacuations across the island since the eruption began five weeks ago, spouting fountains of lava and high concentrations of toxic sulphur dioxide gas through about two dozen volcanic fissures at the foot of the volcano.

An eruption at Kilauea summit jolted the area with the force of a 5.4 magnitude natural disaster and hurled an ash plume that reached 10,000 feet above sea level. A helicopter overflight of Kilauea Volcano's lower East Rift Zone on June 6, 2018, around 5:00 pm.m HST documented lava-seawater interactions at the ocean entry and the formation of a white plume called laze.

It has forced the shutdown of a geothermal energy plant that normally provides about a quarter of the island's electricity.

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