Ruapehu has a “Blocked Nose”

The blackened crater of Mt Ruapehu after it erupted in 2007. Photo / John Cowpland

The blackened crater of Mt Ruapehu after it erupted in 2007. Photo / John Cowpland


The likelihood of Mt Ruapehu erupting has increased, GNS Science says.

GNS Science duty volcanologist Steven Sherburn said changes in measurements at Ruapehu over the last few weeks indicate eruptions are “more likely over the next weeks to months”.

“We are monitoring Ruapehu closely, but it often does not give any immediate warning that it is going to erupt,” Dr Sherburn said.

“We think that the temperature a few hundred metres beneath Crater Lake is about 800 degrees Celsius, but the lake itself is only about 20 degrees Celsius. This suggests the vent is partly blocked which may be leading to a pressure build-up beneath Crater Lake.

“A sudden release of the pressure may lead to an eruption.”

As a result, the Aviation Colour Code has increased from Green to Yellow. However, the Volcanic Alert Level remains at 1. Code Yellow indicates a volcano is experiencing signs of elevated unrest above known background levels.

GNS said small earthquakes have been occurring about 5km beneath the summit area of Ruapehu since late-October, but these may not be directly related to the high temperatures beneath Crater Lake as the earthquakes are much deeper.

A build-up of pressure beneath Crater Lake is thought to have caused the 2007 eruption and a smaller eruption in 2006.

Source –

Marmageddon: Crisis in New Zealand


Now I know, that this is not exactly ‘breaking news’ and this crisis has been going on for some months now, but with no immediate end in sight, it is important to get the message out to the interwebs, about the on going national state of emergency in New Zealand, other wise known as Marmageddon.

[Explanatory Video]

In summary, the two earthquakes, in Christchurch in September 2010 and February 2011, not only devastated iconic buildings such as the Christchurch Cathedral, but they also damaged the Sanitarium factory, and the only one in the whole world that makes the New Zealand version of Marmite.

The following thread in the Simtropolis Current Events forum, (started by yours truly) provides a fascinating and indepth insight both into the crisis itself, but also it attempts to explain in simple (Kiwi) English, to the bemused Americans and Canadians, and anyone else who has no idea what the heck we poor Kiwi’s at the bottom of the South Pacific, are going on about.

The Australian’s of course are attempting to be as smug as ever, with their version of the spread, Vegemite… however even Vegemite, has experienced some supply issues of their own in recent weeks.

‘Vege-pocalypse’ fears in spread shortage

First it was “Marmageddon” as Marmite vanished from shop shelves – now Vegemite has been hit by supply problems.

Stocks of the Australian-made yeast spread have run out this week at several supermarkets, including at least two large stores in Auckland.

[Read More]

Naturally the alternatives don’t really bear thinking about…



Prime Minister John Key says he can happily switch to the Australian-made rival spread, currently on special at most New Zealand supermarkets.


Made by Masterfoods, it’s a bit like Kiwi Marmite in that it’s a yeast extract spread.


The UK brand (called Marmite over there) is available here. However, its powerful salty taste may offend those raised on the sugar-laced Kiwi variety.


The internet abounds with recipes, although most are for the British version. Ingredients: brewer’s yeast, sea salt, onion, carrots, turnips and celery.


Bovril and Oxo may not be so good on the breakfast table.

Perhaps it is best to leave this post with the immortal words of Dr King…

I have a dream that one day we will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all bread spreads are created equal.”

I have a dream that all the little children will one day live in a world where they will not be judged by the color of their spreads but by the content of their character and flavour.

I have a dream today!

This is our hope, and this is the faith that we traverse the depths and the distance of the ‘great wet thing’ the expanse of the South Pacific with.

With this faith, we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair in this grave time of the great Marmite shortage, a stone of hope. With this faith, we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our world into a beautiful spreadable symphony of brotherhood, where the lovers of Marmite will with this faith, be able to work together, to spread together, and to stand up for the freedom of all toast and bread lovers together, knowing that one day, Marmite shall rise again!

(I might be paraphrasing just a little.)