East Epi Volcano | John Seach


Shefa Province, Vanuatu

16.68 S 168.37 E,
summit elevation -34 m,
submarine caldera

East Epi Caldera is composed of three cones are aligned east-west, spaced equidistant 3.5 km apart.

 Three volcanoes (called Epi-A, Epi-B, and Epi-C) located near Epi Island are arranged along an east-west alignment with Epi-A being closest to the island at a distance of 2 km . The underwater area has a sunken caldera which is characterised by a western wall that is a steep cliff along the central northern coast of Epi and the cones are situated on the north wall which slopes gently.

There is a submarine canyon that runs towards the northeast and breaches the caldera rim, cutting into it deeply, but becoming broader and flatter as it progresses. The steepest part of this canyon is in its breached eastern wall.

East Epi

East Epi Volcano - John Seach

Epi A Crater. Circular with area of 6 sq km. Crater open towards west. Summit 124 m below sea level.

Epi B Crater. The largest of the 3 Epi cones. An active volcano which vents plumes of fluid and gas. North-south elongation with area of 12 sq km. Two subsidiary cone on the upper south flank. Summit 34 m below sea level.

Epi C Crater. Circular with area of 2 sq km. Crater open towards west. Summit 169 m below sea level.

2023 A short-lived eruption occurred on 01 February 2023. Low level ash emissions were observed.
2004 Eruption in early March.
1988 Surface water more discoloured than usual.
1979 Eruption from S flank of Epi B. Submarine eruption.
1974 Central eruption.
1973 Surface discoloration observed in May and October.
1972 Surface discoloration observed in May and June.
1971 Surface discoloration observed in May, June, October, and November.
1961 Possible eruption.
1960 Submarine eruption. Three centres active between Lopevi and Epi. Activity coincided with eruptions of Lopevi.
1958 Submarine eruption with new island.
1953 Central, flank, and submarine eruption with a new island forming. Eruption occurred simultaneously at 3 vents. Large amounts of pumice formed and an island formed for a short time.
1920 Submarine eruption with new island formed. Located between Lopevi and Epi. Violently active.

Further reading
Crawford, A.J., Greene, H.G. and Exon, N.F., 1988. Geology, petrology and geochemistry of submarine volcanoes around Epi island, New Hebrides island arc.

East Epi Volcano Eruptions

2023, 2004, 1988, 1979, 1974, 1973, 1972, 1971, 1961, 1960, 1958, 1953, 1920.