The eruption of the Cumbre Vieja volcano on the island of La Palma, Spain, has now continued for over a month, with experts warning that it is likely spew lava in the “short and medium term”.
Over 7,000 people from a total population of 85,000 have been evacuated from their homes since the beginning of the eruption on September 19, after a “swarm” of earthquakes affected La Palma in the Canary Island archipelago, reports Xinhua news agency.
During its ongoing eruption, the volcano ejected 80 million cubic metres of lava covering over 800 hectares of land on the island that has a surface area of just 708.32 square km.
On its route to the coast, the lava has split into four different channels and has destroyed almost 300 hectares of agricultural land, including 52 hectares of vineyards and 128 dedicated to banana plantations — the island’s main crop.
Almost 2,000 buildings have been destroyed.
One of the flows has reached the sea and created around 40 hectares of new land while a second flow is expected to reach the ocean “in a matter of hours”.
“We are doing everything that is humanly possible, almost the impossible, to limit the damage,” Angel Victor Torres, the Canary Islands regional president, said on Wednesday night as lava moved through the municipality of La Laguna.
Meanwhile the island continues to be shaken by constant earthquakes of which over 35,000 have been measured since the start of the event, with the strongest measuring 4.8 on the Richter Scale.
An unprecedented drone operation was carried out on Wednesday to rescue stranded dogs.