Lava from Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano nears power plant

Kilauea Volcano Lava Flow: Wells Capped at Power Plant that Locals Say Desecrates Goddess of Fire

Kilauea Volcano Lava Flow: Wells Capped at Power Plant that Locals Say Desecrates Goddess of Fire

The arrival of the lava at the island's coast over the weekend sparked new safety warnings about toxic gas on the island's southern coast, The Associated Press reported.

"The Puna Geothermal Venture had always been contentious on the island, the Associated Press reported, with some native Hawaiians saying that it desecrated Kilauea, where the goddess of fire, Pele, is said to live".

Lava from a nearby, new volcanic vent entered, then stalled, on the 815-acre (329.8 hectare) property where the Puna Geothermal Venture wells occupy around 40 acres (16 hectares).

Scientists, however, say the conditions on Kilauea make it a good site for harnessing the earth for renewable energy.

"There's heat beneath the ground if you dig deep enough everywhere", said Laura Wisland, a senior analyst at the Union of Concerned Scientists. "The U.S. Coast Guard is actively monitoring the area", the agency said. Hawaiian volcano lava has temperatures of 1,100 degrees Centigrade, while in other volcanos, like those in Indonesia, it can be as low as 800, he said. The company also said there was no damage to the facilities above-ground and that it was continuing to assess the impact.

Puna Geothermal represents about 4.5 percent of Ormat's worldwide generating capacity.

Kaleikini said the gases that could potentially leak from the Puna plant are no different from those coming from active fissures. The gas is still spewing from cracks in the earth's surface after the Kilauea volcano's massive eruption 19 days ago.

The volcano's Puu Oo crater was releasing 200 to 300 tons (181 to 272 metric tons) a day but is no longer emitting sulfur dioxide.

At least 47 homes and other structures have been destroyed by almost two dozen fissures in the Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens, and a man was seriously injured on Saturday by flying lava. Darryl Clinton was trying to stop lava bombs that hit homes from catching fire. It hit him above the ankle.

The man, Darryl Clinton, was hospitalized and has so far undergone two surgeries to fix his shattered leg, though he's expected to make a full recovery, reports CNN.

Doctors saved his leg, but he must avoid putting weight on it for six weeks.

Geologists say that the Kilauea explosion is significant and especially unsafe because both the summit and a series of fissures on its side are exploding simultaneously. "Laze", as scientists call it, is generated when the molten rock interacts with the sea and is cooled off. "The eruption is still extremely dynamic and risky, and first responders need to focus on protecting residents and not dealing with sightseers".

A lava fountain erupts at night along a recent lava flow from a Kilauea volcano fissure on Hawaii's Big Island, May 22, 2018, in Kapoho, Hawaii. Meanwhile, lava is pouring into the ocean at a location three miles (5 km) east of the plant, producing noxious clouds of acid fumes, steam, and glass-like particles - a phenomenon known as "laze", a portmanteau of lava and haze.

U.S. Geological Survey geophysicist Mike Poland says there are near continuous low-level ash emissions from the summit.

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