Seismic Activity Recorded Around Numerous Volcanic Sites - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Seismic Activity Recorded Around Numerous Volcanic Sites

Published January 31, 2017

Photo by
Axel Sigurðarson

Bárðarbunga, Katla and Grímsvötn – all Icelandic volcanoes, and all of them have been showing signs of increased seismic activity. A professor of geology contends we have reason to believe they are preparing to erupt.

RÚV reports that four large quakes were recorded around Bárðarbunga yesterday, two of them greater than a 4 on the Richter scale. Katla also recently had three quakes measuring greater than 4 on the Richter scale, and several over 3 have been measured at the volcano last week.

Professor of geology Páll Einarsson adds that Grímsvötn is also preparing to erupt.

All this said, not all volcanoes are created equal, and different levels of preparation are required for each of them. For example, Páll maintains that “we don’t need any extreme preparations” where a Katla eruption is concerned, as it is “in reality always in a state of continuous eruption.” However, he adds that “there is no question” that we need to be prepared where Bárðarbunga is concerned.

As always, eruption prediction is an inexact science. Signs of increased seismic activity could indicate an eruption within the next months, years, or even decades. Grapevine will keep readers posted on any new and pressing developments as they arise.

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