ICS Lecture: Volcanic Activity in the Caribbean and its Impact

As part of its Conferencias Caribeñas 7 lecture series for the 2010-2011 academic year, the Institute of Caribbean Studies (ICS) of the University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras (UPR-RP) invites the academic community and the general public to the lecture “La actividad volcánica en el Caribe: Algunos de sus impactos” [Volcanic Activity in the Caribbean: Some of its Impacts] by Dr.  Lizzette A. Rodríguez Iglesias (Geology Department, UPR-Mayagüez). Dr. José Molinelli (Departament of Environmental Sciences, School of Natural Sciences, UPR-RP) will serve as commentator. The activity will be held on Thursday, September 9, 2010, from 1:00 to 3:00pm in Amphitheater REB 238 (Ramon Emeterio Betances Building), School of Social Sciences, University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras.

The arc of volcanic islands in the Lesser Antilles (from Saba, in the north, to Grenada, in the south) comprises at least 17 active volcanoes, of which one, the Soufrière Hills volcano in Montserrat, has been in eruption since 1995. The Soufrière eruptions are characterized by the growth and subsequent collapse of volcanic domes, emission of ash and gases, explosions, lahars and pyroclastic flows.  This volcanic activity directly affects the population of Montserrat (of approximately 4,000 people). Due to its proximity, Puerto Rico is impacted by clouds of particles of ash and dust brought by the wind. These particles can cause respiratory problems, especially in a population suffering from previous conditions. Another major effect of these clouds is the interruption of air traffic. Dr. Rodríguez will speak about these and other ways volcanic activity impacts Puerto Rico and other islands.

For further information, you may call Dr. Humberto García Muñiz, Director, at (787) 764-0000, extension 4212, or write to iec@uprrp.edu

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