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A river of lava approaches houses as Mount Cumbre Vieja erupts, spewing out columns of smoke, ash and lava on the Canary island of La Palma on Sept. 19. Photo: Desiree Martin/AFP via Getty Images

About 5,000 people, including 500 tourists, on the Spanish island of La Palma, have been forced to evacuate after a volcano, known as Mount Cumbre Vieja, erupted Sunday, Reuters reports.

Driving the news: The explosion, which took place in a southern area of the island known as Cabeza de Vaca, came after several weeks of seismic activity, with authorities recording an earthquake of about 3.8 magnitude before the eruption.

  • La Palma is one of eight Spanish Canary Islands off Africa’s western coast, with a population of 85,000. The volcano last erupted in 1971, per AP.
  • Roads near the explosion remain closed, and local authorities urge people not to approach the area. No fatalities had been reported as of Monday, per Reuters.
  • The lava has already destroyed about 100 houses, according to Reuters.

Editor's note: This story has been updated with additional details throughout.

Go deeper

Oct 10, 2021 - Health

Pfizer to vaccinate entire Brazilian city as part of study

A health care worker administers a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine to a teenager on Paqueta Island, Rio de Janeiro state, Brazil. Photo: Maria Magdalena Arrellaga/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Pfizer will vaccinate all residents over the age of 12 in the Brazilian city of Toledo as part of a study measuring the effectiveness of its COVID-19 vaccine, the company said in a statement.

Why it matters: Researchers in the study hope to monitor viral transmission in a real-life scenario after the population has been inoculated.

Biden says presidency "will be determined" by outcome of spending plans

President Biden walks with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi after addressing the House Democratic caucus on Thursday. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

President Biden told the House Democratic caucus Thursday "my presidency will be determined" by the votes he wants in the next week on his $1.75 trillion social safety net expansion and $1.2 trillion infrastructure package.

Driving the news: Biden made the comment, according to a source in the room, as he tried to rally support for the $1.75 trillion package. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi acted immediately, calling for a vote on the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill later in the day.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
38 mins ago - Energy & Environment

China declines to speed emissions cuts in new UN pledge

A view of the skyscrapers in the haze in Shanghai, China, in December 2020. Photo: Feature China/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

Chinese leaders are sticking with a prior target to bring the country's carbon emissions to a peak before 2030, according to documents filed with the United Nations Thursday under the Paris climate agreement.

Why it matters: The new documents come just days ahead of the UN climate summit (COP26) in Glasgow. China is by far the world's largest greenhouse gas emitter, and its emissions path is key to whether the temperature-limiting goals of the Paris agreement can remain within reach.

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