Eruptions to come

Let’s start with a question. Which country do you think has the most frequent volcanic eruptions? Before you read on (or peek below for the answer), take a minute to think about it. You can probably guess that Australia is not a front runner. In fact, only two or three countries readily come to mind.…

Iceland in ashes

I had never seen the Manchester sky so blue. The usual milky white which goes by the name ‘Manchester sunny day’ was gone, transformed into an azure experienced mainly during distant holidays. Great Britain of course has a bit of a reputation. Already the Romans wrote that “the atmosphere in this region is always gloomy”.…

Black Swans and Iceland

Two weeks ago I wrote about statistics and the possibility to predict volcanoes in any way by using statistics. I think that the point was a bit lost, my entire point was to show that it was impossible to in any useful manner predict when an eruption would occur, and also that it is impossible…

Volcanoes and CO2 – continued

In the first part of this post, we looked at magical carbon and where to find it. We now continue to look at how much CO2 volcanoes produce, and how it compares to our own emissions. Who wins the battle? The results of the polls are: A small majority believes that volcanoes produce less CO2…

Volcanoes and CO2

The world we live in has a volcanic history. The continents ultimately came from volcanoes, often volcanic arcs, in some cases several billions of years ago, in other cases more recently. All ocean floor is volcanic, made in mid-oceanic rifts within the past few hundred million years. And the volcanic contributions do not stop there.…

Fingered by the Plume

In the last few years new data about the Icelandic mantleplume has emerged that forever has changed how we look at it, and how it affects Iceland. In yon olden days, it was perceived through the eyes of the original plume model that was devised to explain the Emperor Seamount Chain and Hawaii. That means…

Signs and Portents of Iceland

Icelandic volcanoes are all about long term projections. They do not do things in the short run, before any eruptions you will see either several intrusive episodes like at Eyjafjallajökull, or you will see signs of steadily mounting pressure prior to an eruption. For some Icelandic volcanoes these two processes goes on for decades, or…

Notre petit nuage magique

In her 1948 novel “Trollkarlens hatt” (Finn Family Moomintroll), Finnish author Tove Jansson describes how on the first day of spring Moomintroll and his friends discover a large, black hat and bring it home without knowing that it is the Magician’s lost hat and that anything that stays in the hat too long will be…

Countdown to Grimsvötn

I have lately read a lot of comments about Iceland being boring and calm. In reality nothing could be more wrong, Iceland is brimming with activity. So, let us take a quick look at some interesting volcanoes before we go to the namesake of this article. Volcanic activity in general If we start in the…

100 years of Icelandic volcanism

  Statistics and volcanism does not exactly go hand in hand, especially since it tends to end up with idiots claiming that volcanoes are “overdue”. A volcano is never overdue, they may shift patterns of their eruptions, go into extended periods of dormancy, or pretty much do anything that they jolly well pleases. It is…