Friday, October 3, 2014

Bardarbunga volcano update

03.10.2014, 11:00 UTC - Conclusions of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Icelandic Civil Protection:

Scientists from the Icelandic Met Office and the Institute of Earth Sciences and representatives of the Civil Protection in Iceland attend the meetings of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Icelandic Civil Protection. A representative from The Environment Agency of Iceland was also present.
The eruption continues at a similar intensity as previous days. The lava production is steady and running to the southeast from the grader.
  • Very high SO2 values were measured at the eruption site yesterday. It is estimated that 35.000 tons of SO2 are produced by the eruption daily. 
  • The subsidence of the Bardarbunga caldera continues with similar rate although the size of the largest earthquakes have subsided slightely over the last week. 
  • Eleven earthquakes greater than M3.0 were recorded since noon yesterday, the largest M4.8 at 01:41 yesterday.
  • Smaller earthquakes are now detected in the northern part of the dyke and around the eruption site.
  • GPS measurements show minor movements.
  • No change was detected in water monitoring that cannot be explained by changing weather.
Air quality:
  • Today (Friday) gas pollution is expected north and later east of the eruption site. Tomorrow (Saturday) gas pollution can be expected northwest of the eruption site. A map showing the gas forecast can be found on the web page of the Icelandic Met Office An interactive map showing the gas distribution can be seen at
  • The Icelandic Met Office has a form on its web-page for the public to report if they have detected gas pollution. A link to the page can be found on the Icelandic version of the web page under Skrá mengun.
  • People who feel discomfort are advised to stay indoors, close their windows, turn up the heat and turn off air conditioning. Use periods of good air quality to ventilate the house. People experiencing adverse effects should be in immediate contact with their healthcare centre. Measurements of air quality can be found on the webpage The Meteorological Office issues forecast on its web-page and warnings if conditions change to the worse.
  • Instructions from The Environment Agency of Iceland and Chief Epidemiologist can be found on their web-sites.
  • The Icelandic Met Office will publish forecasts for sulphuric gases dispersion on the web and in the national radio.
  • Information and any questions on air pollution can be sent to The Environment Agency through the email The Environment Agency is especially looking for information from people who have been in contact with high concentrations of gas; where they were, at what time it happened, how the gas cloud looked (colour and thickness of the cloud) and how they were affected by it.
Three scenarios are considered most likely:
  • The eruption on Holuhraun declines gradually and subsidence of the Bardarbunga caldera stops.
  • Large-scale subsidence of the caldera occurs, prolonging or strengthening the eruption on Holuhraun. In this situation, it is likely that the eruptive fissure would lengthen southwards under Dyngjujokull, resulting in a jokulhlaup and an ash-producing eruption. It is also possible that eruptive fissures could develop in another location under the glacier.
  • Large-scale subsidence of the caldera occurs, causing an eruption at the edge of the caldera. Such an eruption would melt large quantities of ice, leading to a major jokulhlaup, accompanied by ash fall.
Other scenarios cannot be excluded.

From the Icelandic Met Office: The Aviation Colour Code for Bardarbunga remains at ‘orange’.


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