Subject: Lava from Hawaiian volcano Kilauea is Threatening Pahoa
From: Alex Kemp
Date: Monday, 27 October 2014 00:06:10 +0000
To: Micaela Kemp, Liisa Kemp, Davin Kemp

Your mum & dad got married in Hawaii.

The island of Hawaii has been built from a permanent hole in the Earth's crust. If you look at the Pacific on a map or atlas, you will see a long chain of islands with Hawaii at it's head. The sea floor is moving across that hole, and has left those islands behind it. The movement is slow when measured against our lifetimes, but very quick when measured in geological lifetimes. Eventually the sea floor stoppers the hole in the crust. Then, after a while, the white-hot magma breaks through the sea-floor, causing a new volcano which eventually will grow to become a new island.

The "Big Island" currently has 5 active volcanoes; the youngest is called Kilauea, and is said to be the home of the Hawaiian volcano goddess "Pele":-

Kilauea, home of the Hawaiian volcano goddess “Pele”

Kilauea is estimated to be between 300,000 and 600,000 years old, and has been erupting almost continuously for the last 100 years.

The magma from some volcanoes is very liquid, others give rise to pyroclastic flows or explosions, whilst yet others--like Kilauea--are extremely thick & slow, giving rise to pillow rocks. The lava from Kilauea is moving at about 10 yards (nine meters) per hour:-

This photo is dated Oct. 24, 2014 and is from the U.S. Geological Survey

10 yards / hour does not seem very threatening, unless perhaps your house is in the way. When that photo was taken, Pahoa Village Road, the town’s main street, was just six-tenths of a mile (one kilometer) from the lava. The authorities think that it will reach the town in just 3 to 5 days.

Alex Kemp