Channel: The Kaʻū Calendar News Briefs, Hawaiʻi Island
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Ka`u News Briefs Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017

Lava flowing toward the emergency road along the Puna Coast is shown in this photo by the USGS, which explains in
its weekly Volcano Watch (see below) how scientists measure remotely the temperature of lava.
THE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL SCORECARD ranked Hawai`i in the top 15 states and graded both of Hawai`i's Senators Mazie Hirono and Brian Schatz with ratings of 100 percent. The analysis released Thursday covers the 2016 work of members of Congress.
     The Environmental Scorecard is sponsored by the League of Conservation Voters and, since 1970, has been considered the yardstick for measuring responsibility to the environment among elected officials. The lifetime score for Hirono is 94 percent. For Schatz it is 95 percent. After learning of his score, Schatz tweeted: "Let's keep defending clean air and clean water in 2017 and beyond,"
     Other Senators earning 100 percent for 2016 were Michael Bennet, of Colorado; Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy, both of Connecticut;  Bill Nelson, of Florida; and Dick Durbin, of Illinois.
   The lowest rating was 0 percent, and went to former Senator and new U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Richard Shelby, both of Alabama; Tom Cotton of Arkansas; David Perdue, of Georgia; Dan Coats of Indiana and Joni Earnst of Iowa.
      In the House of Representatives, Ka`u's member Tulsi Gabbard earned 100 percent, as did urban Hawai`i's Rep. Colleen Hanabusa.
     According to the League of Conservation Voters, "Since 1970, the National Environmental Scorecard has been providing objective, factual information about the most important environmental legislation considered and the corresponding voting records of all members of Congress."
     Categories of legislation covered include: Air; Clean Energy; Climate Change; Dirty Energy; Drilling; Lands & Forests; Oceans; Toxics & the Public's Right to Know; Transportation; Water; and Wildlife. An "Other" category covers such issues as overhauling the regulatory process, sweeping funding cuts, the National Environmental Policy Act, federal appointments and nominations, campaign finance reform, trade, and eminent domain issues.

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RECYLE HAWAI`I HAS RELEASED A NEW OUTREACH GUIDE. Included is My Zero Waste Checklist & Tips that encourages everyone to buy in bulk or concentrate; purchase only what is needed; choose products with minimal packaging; and use both sides of paper, including two-sided copies. It encourages people to fight junk mail by removing name and address form mailing lists.
    It suggests getting into the habigt of reusing containers by swapping disposables for reusable, refillable, bottles, reusable shopping bags, cloth napkins and personal take out containers. Give gently used items to families, friends, a shelter or garage sale. Take "still good stuff" to a recycling and reuse center.
      The guide also details recycling accepted at Hawai`i County Transfer Stations. See more at www.recylehawaii.org.

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REMOTELY MEASURING THE TEMPERATURE OF LAVA from Kilauea Volcano is the subject of this week's Volcano Watch by scientists at Hawaiian Volcano Observatory:     If something is hot enough, it emits light in wavelengths that are visible to the human eye. This is called incandescence. If you've ever seen the red-, orange-, or yellow-ish glow from Kīlauea Volcano's lava lake or an active lava flow, then you have observed incandescence.     
     Color is a rough indication of the temperature of hot materials, including lava. The human eye is remarkably sensitive to subtle color differences, and, with some practice, you can roughly estimate the temperature range of an object based on the color of its incandescent glow.
     For example, yellow indicates a temperature of about 1000–1200 degrees Celsius (1832–2192 degrees Fahrenheit). Orange indicates a slightly cooler temperature of about 800–1000 degrees Celsius (1472–1832 degrees Fahrenheit), while red is even cooler, about 600–800 degrees Celsius (1112–1472 degrees Fahrenheit).
     A remote sensing instrument that can determine the temperature of distant objects based on their incandescent color is called an optical pyrometer. "Remote sensing" refers to the use of imaging technology that acts as extensions of our eyes, allowing us to see the world in a new light and from different perspectives.
     One of the most important characteristics of active lava is its eruption temperature. This information can help determine the lava's composition and flow characteristics. It also provides important hints about the magma's plumbing system, source region, and supply rate, and how far the lava might travel.
 U.S. Geological Survey scientist used a custom-built,
high-speed camera to remotely measure the
temperature of spattering lava on the surface
of Kīlauea Volcano's summit lava lake
(background). This particular experiment,
conducted from the Jaggar Museum
overlook in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National
Park on December 10, 2016, was part of
 a NASA-funded research project. USGS photo.

     The outer surface of erupting lava cools incredibly quickly when it is first exposed to air—hundreds of degrees per second. Hence, remotely measuring the eruption temperature is an attempt to record something that is visible for only a fraction of a second. Previous work on Kīlauea and other active volcanoes has demonstrated that existing methods of remotely determining lava flow temperatures can have hundreds of degrees of uncertainty.
       In early December 2016, scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey and NASA visited Kīlauea Volcano to experiment with a portable, ground-based camera system for use as an optical imaging pyrometer. The custom-built, high-speed camera can acquire images at more than 50 frames per second in three wavelengths (green, red, and near-infrared). It was calibrated by collecting images of a high temperature callibration oven.
     During their field work, the USGS and NASA scientists collected thousands of images of active lava from Kīlauea's two ongoing eruptions. This included breakouts along the 61g lava flow, as well as spattering lava along the edges of the summit lava lake, which was visible from the Jaggar Museum overlook in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park. 
     The eruption temperature of Kīlauea lava is well-known— up to about 1170 degrees Celsius (2140 degrees Fahrenheit) at the summit and around 1140 degrees Celsius (2084 degrees Fahrenheit) on the East Rift Zone. Because of this, the volcano is the perfect place to determine how these camera data can be used to retrieve reliable temperatures from the hottest parts of active flows and lava lakes.
     The results of this study will establish the validity of a generic data processing method that could be applied to other satellite, airborne, and ground-based remote sensing data sets. The ultimate goal of this NASA-funded research is to design an instrument capable of reliably measuring the temperature of active lava on Jupiter's moon, Io, the only other object in our solar system known to have active, high-temperature volcanism.
Kīlauea Volcano, on the Island of Hawaiʻi, is one of the best places in the world for scientists to conduct their remote sensing research, which is important for future NASA missions to the outer reaches of our solar system, concluded Volcano Watch.
Kīlauea spatter shows a red color, which is cooler than yellow and orange.
Scientists can remotely measure temperature of the lava from
a distance. USGS photo
     Kīlauea continues to erupt at its summit and East Rift Zone. This past week, the summit lava lake level varied between about 20 and 30 m (66–98 ft) below the vent rim. The 61g flow was still active, with lava entering the ocean near Kamokuna and surface breakouts downslope of Pu'u 'Ō'ō and on the coastal plain about 730 m (about 0.5 mi) inland of the ocean. The 61g flows do not pose an immediate threat to nearby communities.
     Mauna Loa is not erupting. During the past week, a few dozen small-magnitude earthquakes occurred beneath the volcano, primarily in the upper Southwest Rift at depths less than 5 km (3 mi), with a few on the volcano's west flank at slightly greater depths. GPS measurements continue to show deformation related to inflation of a magma reservoir beneath the summit and upper Southwest Rift Zone. No significant change in the summit fumarole temperature was noted this past week. 
     Two earthquakes were reported felt on the Island of Hawaiʻi this past week. On February 17, at 5:33 a.m., HST, a magnitude-4.6 earthquake occurred 23.7 km (14.7 mi) northwest of Kawaihae at a depth of 41 km (25 mi), and, at 5:49 a.m., a magnitude-2.4 earthquake occurred 22.4 km (13.9 mi) northwest of Kawaihae at a depth of 40 km (24 mi).
     Visit the HVO website (http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov) for past Volcano Watch articles, Kīlauea daily eruption updates, Mauna Loa weekly updates, volcano photos, recent earthquakes info, and more; call for summary updates at 808-967-8862 (Kīlauea) or 808-967-
8866 (Mauna Loa); email questions to askHVO@usgs.gov

Ocean View Community Development Corp. meeting, Fri, Feb 24, 5 p.m., Hawaiian Ranchos office.

Japanese Internment on Hawai`i Island is the subject of the first Coffee Talk at Kahuku, Friday, Feb. 24 at 9:30 a.m., Kahuku Unit Visitor Center at Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park. Dr. Jade Moniz-Nakamua leads the talk on Japanese held at Kilauea Military Camp during World War II. Free.
Counting whales in Ka`u and beyond this Saturday can be
supported by purchasing tee shirts.
See www.hawaiihumpbackwhale.noaa.gov

Sanctuary Ocean Count, Sat, Feb 25, 8 a.m. - 12:15 p.m., various coastal locations, several in Ka`u. Participants count humpback whales and record their behaviors. Registration required. See hawaiihumpbackwhale.noaa.gov or 725-5923.

Ka`u Hospital Community Input Meeting, Sat, Feb 25, 1:30 p.m. at the hospital. Kurt Corbin, Chair of the East Hawai`i Regional Board of the Hawai`i Hospital System Corp, which oversees the hospital and clinic operations, said that "Personal conversations and dialogue with our community stakeholders are absolutely essential in helping guide the decisions that the Regional Board must make." Board members and administrators will be on hand and a financial overview and future outlook will be presented. For more information, contact Terry Larson, Regional Board Secretary at 932-3103.

Love the Arts: Singin’ in the Rainforest, Sat, Feb 25, 5 – 9 p.m., Volcano Art Center in Volcano Village. The annual fundraiser features one-of-a-kind umbrellas painted by Hawai‘i Island artists. Fine wine, a luxurious gourmet buffet, spirited Hawaiian music and live and silent auctions. 967-8222Soil andComposting class at Ka`u Farm School on Sunday, Feb. 26 at Earth Matters Farm on the corner of South Point Road and Kama`oa Roa`oa Road, 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Special guests include Rep. Richard Creagan, Chair of the Agriculture Committee of the state House of Representatives and Melanie Willich, Director of the Young Farmers Program at Kohala Center. Free, sponsored by Kohala Center and Hawai`i Farmers Union United. Donations accepted. RSVP to kaufarmschool@gmail.com or call 808-721-6977

Palm Trail Hike, Sun, Feb 26, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park’s Kahuku Unit. This free, moderately difficult 2.6-mile loop trail provides one of the best panoramic views Kahuku has to offer.

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