A total of 34 “sudden appearance” beaches in the lava deltas of the Tajogaite volcano, during its eruption in 2021 on the island of La Palma, have been documented by a team of researchers from the University Institute of Oceanography and Global Change (IOCAG). ) from the ULPGC (University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria).
Up to 34 new beaches have been recorded, formed in short periods of between 24 and 48 hours after the stabilization of the respective lava fronts, according to the observations of the aerial orthophotographs provided by the drones that flew over the area.
After their appearance, most of these new beaches proved durable in the short and medium term (at 5 months), although they showed morphological dynamicsthat is, patterns of change and alteration, highly changing over time, most likely due to the high sensitivity and initial imbalance of the new terrain with respect to the maritime energy conditions of this coastal environment, the research highlights.
With this research, it has been documented, for the first time at an international level and using state-of-the-art technologies, the formation and initial behavior of beaches suddenly arisen during volcanic events. The work thus confirms the character of a natural laboratory that the eruption had by allowing different geological phenomena to be observed in real time.
The study has focused both on the rates of appearance of the beaches and on their morphological dynamics in the first 3 to 5 months after their formation.