King Neptune must be angry. Last week a crazy fireeye ignited in on Mexico’s gulf coast, and last night a towering pillar of fire erupted in Azerbaijan’s Caspian Sea.
The Caspian eruption, which continues to smolder, was caused by a mud volcano, according to the country’s Emergencies Ministry. Mud volcanos, also known as mud domes, are new landform created by the eruption of mud or slurries, water and gases.
The fire occurred about 6 miles from the Umid gas field, south of Baku, the Azerbaijani capital, and didn’t affect nearby oil and natural gas platforms, the ministry said in a statement.
“Azerbaijan has basically the perfect geological conditions for mud volcanoes,” said Mark Tingay, a geophysicist from the University of Adelaide in Australia, in a tweet. “The fireball was a major eruption of the Dashly Island (aka Ignatiy Stone Island) mud volcano! This mud volcano also had major eruptions in 1920 and 1945.”
Tingy also reports that the main eruption lasted 8 minutes and was associated with a small magnitude 2 seismic event at ~1.5km depth.
A state oil company ship has been sent to investigate.
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