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Thursday 15 January 2009, San José, Costa Rica

500 New Homes Need To Be Built Following Earthquake, Says Housing Minister
Experts Say Poás Volcano Activity Normal
Obama Raises Costa Rican Hopes of Renegotiating TLC
Public Workers Get 6.9% Raise
Chinchilla To Officially Announce Today Her Presidential Aspirations
¢40.000 Required For School Supplies
INS Won't Insure Properties in Central Valley
Experts Say Poás Volcano Activity Normal
Since last Thursday's killer earthquake, experts detected an increased activity in the Poás volcano, as smoke began emanating from the crater.

And experts believe that the strong earthquake also was the trigger of the eruptions of the volcano as it released steam sediment and water on Monday and yesterday.

"It is possible that earthquakes upset the hydrothermal system, but for now we can not rule out or confirm that the eruptions are related to earthquakes. These events are typical of the Poás and occur sporadically," said María del Mar Martínez, scientist for the Observatorio Vulcanológico y Sismológico de Costa Rica (OVSICORI).

The massive expulsion occurred on Monday ar 2:11pm, the second eruption occurred yesteday at 10:30am.

Martínez explained that a fluid bubble of about 50 metres in diameter formed in the volcano's lagoon, as the volcano released a plume of sediment, nitrogen and water about 15 metres into the air.

The last time the volcano showed increased activity was in January 2008 when an expulsion reached some 200 metres in the air.

Many experts say that the activity at the Poás is within normal parameters for the volcano, which is being closely monitored.

The Poás volcano has one of the largest active craters in the world. Since 1898 it has erupted 39 times.

Following the earthquake and the eruptions, the Poás has been closed to visitors indefinitely.





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