Volcanic Eruption Near Reykjavik
September 12, 2021
The volcanic eruption in Iceland that began in March is still going strong.
The eruption, located about 40 km southwest of Reykjavik, is only a fraction of the size of the Eyjafjallajokull eruption, which infamously shut down international air-traffic in 2010.
The eruption occurred near Fagradalsfjall (Beautiful Valley Mountain) in the remote Geldingadalur (Geldingsdale), so named by Viking-era settlers who used the enclosure as a pen for horses and other livestock.
The area is uninhabited and so far the eruption has not posed a threat to nearby towns and villages. Iceland's airports have remained open throughout.
From the start, people have hiked to the area to witness the eruption up close and local helicopter companies are offering tours from Reykjavik.
Effusive vs. explosive eruption
Geologists describe the eruption as "effusive", in which lava flows out of the volcano onto the ground, as opposed to "explosive", wherein magma is violently fragmented and rapidly expelled from a volcano, like Eyjafjallajokull 11-years ago.
The last eruption on the Reykjanes peninsula dates back almost 800 years to 1240.
Located between the Eurasian and the North American tectonic plates, Iceland is a seismic and volcanic hotspot as the two plates move in opposite directions. Iceland experiences a volcanic eruption once every 4-5 years on average.
Follow the eruption live
Here´s a live video feed of the eruption, courtesy of Icelandic State Broadcasting (RÚV).