Katla volcano earthquake activity continues

“It is unclear at the moment if this is going to result in a eruption but at the moment it is my view that chances of an eruption happening soon (maybe in matter of hours) is high.” – Blogger Jón Frímann

21 June 2017 – The past few days have seen a swarm of tremors around Katla volcano, with some reaching up to 3.6 magnitude.

“Earthquake activity continues in Katla volcano,” writes Frímann.”It is unclear at the moment if this is going to result in a eruption but at the moment it is my view that chances of an eruption happening soon (maybe in matter of hours) is high.”

Katla is a large subglacial volcano located beneath the Mydalsjokull glacier in southern Iceland. It has been dormant  for almost 100 years, but with twenty documented eruptions between 930 and 1918 at intervals of 13 – 95 years it is considered very active.

Earthquake activity in Katla volcano. Copyright of this image belongs to Icelandic Met Office.

Although Katla hasn’t erupted forcefully enough to break through the ice since 1918, its present dormancy is among the longest in known history. Because of that long period of dormancy, many think the current seismic activity is a sure sign of a pending eruption.

Such an eruption could prove to be significant.

Katla’s 1918 eruption, a major eruption, lasted almost a month and extended the southern coast by 5 km due to lava flow deposits.

The Icelandic Met Office, which is closely monitoring the volcano, ssures that there are no definite tell tale signs of a looming eruption.



Thanks to Sonya Porter and Laurel for these links

11 thoughts on “Katla volcano earthquake activity continues”

  1. I’ve watched Katla’s activity for years – ever since the “unpronounceable named one just to the left in the graphic erupted several years back. Also in that frame above and to the left is Hekla. When I asked the Icelandic Met about it, their response was Hekla gives very little warning. There have been a number of series of earthquakes around Hekla in the past several months, and I believe I read that there was some belief that the magma sources for all the volcanoes in the picture are interconnected. If Katla does erupt, the ash from it should shut down Europe again, far worse than did “the unpronounceable one” a few years back.

    If such an eruption were to happen with significant force – ash high into the air, considering the latitude that it is at, I would think it could have a very large impact on northern hemispheric temperature, since the particulate could potential reflect a lot of summer heat from the Sun, thus depriving the hemisphere of a lot the energy it would normally receive. And with a quiet Sun to start with, that could really start the ice ball rolling.

  2. Volcanic dust plays hell with jet engines. A massive eruption could throw so much volcanic ash into the atmosphere it could easily shut down air travel between Europe and North America.

  3. lower the sun cycle gets, the higher the quakes n volcanos seem to get.
    large quake in sth america today 6.9

    • Yes, that’s what John Casey’s book Upheaval is all about, Laurel. Ben Davidson of SuspiciousObservers is of the same opinion.

  4. That’s potentially a lot of fresh water melt that may presumably flow to the sea with an eruption or possibly become a new lake?

  5. Sorry, Jon Frimann is an amateur – not a qualified volcanologist.
    He runs a self and contributor funded blog and has a couple of Geo phones located in Iceland.
    Having said that, he is quite knowledgeable on the subject and has studied earth sciences.
    More weight can probably be put behind one of the former Prime Ministers of Iceland. He has been warning about Katla for years – and Hekla. His qualification is simple. – “It’s a mathematical certainty” – based on past history.

    • Many renowned scientist working independant, not allowed association with colleges or governments pending their political or scientific views have made large contributions to the world of science and politics.
      Just pointing out that one should not paste labels on others for not attaining a letter of writ from peers sustaining ones intelligence or lack thereof based upon association only.

      Many academia professors today live in their own renounced world of research and wish not to have their ideas or writings disturbed from any thoughts other than the prescribed medicine. Not all but many.

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