The diffuse emission of carbon dioxide (CO2) of volcanic origin in the nucleus of La Bombilla, which together with that of Puerto Naos is still excluded by this phenomenon, is between 20 and 500 times higher than that of the volcano in Cumbre Vieja, La Palma.
The data is provided by the Volcanological Institute of the Canary Islands (Involcan) to illustrate "how anomalous" this diffuse emission of CO2 is, the second largest component of volcanic gases after water vapor, which in this case spreads in a "dispersed, silent”, imperceptible to the human eye.
Unlike the plumes, fumaroles or boiling pots, which are the visible manifestations of the gases that volcanoes emit into the atmosphere.
Involcan clarifies that the diffuse emission rate related to Cumbre Vieja and La Bombilla "cannot be compared" because these data correspond to very different areas: 220 square kilometers compared to 0.033 square kilometers.
But if these emission rates are "normalized" per unit area (square kilometer), he argues that these emissions can be compared.
And in this case, the result is that the diffuse emission of CO2 per unit area in La Bombilla has been approximately between 20 and 500 times higher than that recorded for Cumbre Vieja since it began to be monitored and measured at end of December 2021.
Thus, emphasizes Involcan, it is clear that the diffuse CO2 emissions in La Bombilla "are clearly anomalous" and that they could be considered "normal" when they are comparable to those recorded in Cumbre Vieja.
It details that, in general, the diffuse fluxes of CO2 in volcanic soils of the Canary Islands are in the range of values from 1 to 10 grams per square meter per day.
In the case of La Bombilla, average values have been recorded that exceed 1,000 grams per square meter per day.