Icelandic Authorities Held Press Conference on Possible Volcanic Eruption


Photo: Arian Zwegers, Wikimedia

A Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management press conference was held on 6 November to report on the current situation on the Reykjanes peninsula.

As a result, contingency plans for the evacuation of the local population, which includes the 3,700 residents of the nearby town of Grindavík, as well as staff and visitors to the popular Blue Lagoon tourist attraction, have been drawn up.

A state of uncertainty has been declared for the Reykjanes peninsula since there are indications that magma has begun flowing faster to the northwest of Mt. Þorbjörn. Þorbjörn, volcanic mountain, is only a 40-minute drive from the capital, Reykjavik.

An eruption in the area could disrupt power production at Svartsengi power station, the largest supplier of power and water to the Reykjanes peninsula, necessitate the evacuation of Grindavík, and affect operations at the Blue Lagoon. Moreover, the country’s only international airport Keflavíkurflugvöllur is also located on the Reykjanes Peninsula.

The Icelandic Meteorological Office reported an unusual increase in seismic activity on the Reykjanes Peninsula, Iceland in recent days, with around 1300 earthquakes reported in the area.

Evidence suggests that this eruption would be larger and more volatile than previous ones in the area, Kristín Jónsdóttir, the head of natural hazard monitoring at the Icelandic Met Office, stated.

A live stream has been set up of the site of the possible eruption.

Source: Iceland Review