Looks like Iceland finally let ‘er rip. Or gently burble…
A long dormant volcano on the Reykjanes Peninsula in southwestern Iceland has flared to life, spilling lava down two sides in that area’s first volcanic eruption in nearly 800 years.
By Associated Press, Wire Service Content March 19, 2021, at 9:21 p.m.
REYKJAVIK, ICELAND (AP) — A long dormant volcano on the Reykjanes Peninsula in southwestern Iceland flared to life Friday night, spilling lava down two sides in that area’s first volcanic eruption in nearly 800 years.
Initial aerial footage, posted on the Facebook page of the Icelandic Meteorological Office, showed a relatively small eruption so far, with two streams of lava running in opposite directions. The glow from the lava could be seen from the outskirts of Iceland’s capital, Reykjavík, which is about 32 kilometers (20 miles) away.
Nearer to me, Mount Lassen last erupted in about 1914. If the ‘few hundred years’ silent volcanoes start lighting up, this could get very interesting locally.
The Fagradals Mountain volcano had been dormant for 6,000 years, and the Reykjanes Peninsula hadn’t seen an eruption of any volcano in 781 years.
There had been signs of a possible eruption recently, with earthquakes occurring daily for the past three weeks. But volcanologists were still taken by surprise because the seismic activity had calmed down before the eruption.
So for your educational benefit: IF you are near a volcano and it rumbles a LOT, then goes silent, maybe that’s a good time for a fishing trip to the beach…
Then there’s that little detail that while the AREA is having the first in 800 years, that particular volcano was dormant for 6000 years. Oh Dear!
There’s a cinder cone next to Mount Shasta of about that age.
Black Butte is a cluster of overlapping dacite lava domes in a butte, a satellite cone of Mount Shasta. It is located directly adjacent to Interstate 5 at milepost 742 between the city of Mount Shasta and Weed, California. The highway crosses a 3,912 ft (1,192 m) pass, Black Butte Summit, at the western base of the lava domes. The lava domes were extruded at the foot of the cone of Shastina following the period of its major eruptions about 9,000–10,000 years ago.
So if were getting into the 1000s of years reactivating, that’s going to be interesting. (No, I don’t expect it. No-one expects the Volcanic Inquisition! ;-) But there’s similarly aged volcanic events in Southern California out in the desert and near the Salton Sea (that has a volcanic feature under it…)
So the big question is just this:
Is this just a regular stochastic one-off event of something old waking up in an area of relatively frequent activity? Or is this the start of a return to more active volcanism generally as was common a few thousand years ago (and not that rare 200 years ago…)?
More interesting coverage here:
with nifty pictures… hit the link!