The Sicilian Affair

This of course was our April 1 story, bringing volcanoes up-to-date with the modern world of ‘alternative facts’. We hope you enjoyed it and that it brought a smile to your face. Any resemblance to any person anywhere in the world is purely intentional. Tune in next year when we will be revealing the volcano vaccination program which can prevent any eruption but that Iceland has banned all exports of it.


It is with a heavy heart I have to expose a case of international fraud within the volcanic community. The scope of it is so vast that I have been putting off writing about it since 2011, but now I can hold back no more. 

But before dealing with the scandal at hand, I need to set the stage, and take you the reader through every painful step. So, back to the beginning in the late summer of 2001.  

In 2001 I had a very intricate problem, I had left my employer in Toronto and I was stuck with more mementos and artifacts than I cared to admit to owning, and a 52 fot ketch designed by Sparkman & Stephen’s that I had picked up from a Drug Enforcement Agency auction. 

So, quite naturally I filled the boat up with my earthly belongings and set sail and cast off my illegal mooring at Governor’s Island in New York in the dark. As the sun rose, I passed the Statue of Liberty and left that part of my life forever. 

Back in Europe I ended up cavorting around in the Mediterranean as a vacation while I pondered what to do with the rest of my life. In the end there is just so much partying that a man can do, and I started to look for a suitable harbour for long-time mooring of the ketch so that I could start working again. 

I had been advised that Catania would be a good place to put the ship in, so I set sail from Christiana Island in the Greek Cycladic archipelago for Sicily. 

As I slowly neared the island, I watched the low rolling mountain plateau made out of uplifted seabed by Africa. To my surprise I noticed the black ash cloud rising towards the sky up in these mountains, but did not think more of it. 


In the end I got my mooring after talking to the Mayor, Pier-Angelo Montalbano, and an elderly gentleman in a crème-coloured suit who was holding court near the harbour. The latter found me to be completely crazy, so I got a good price for the spot where my ketch rested for the next few years until I sold it. 

The years passed and I got ever more involved with volcanoes, after all, what else can one do in life? This is where I started to notice pictures of a volcanic mountain that I could not recollect from my quite frequent travels back to Sicily for sailing, and from my own shaky pictures that I had taken. 

Where did all of those images come from of an imposing volcanic mountain with a ridiculous number of volcanic vents with silly names? Seriously? Puttusidduu? Pull me a wee gnome will you! 


The Sicilian Affair 

During the first few years I did not think a lot about it, but as more and more people become famous for their photographs, videos and ashtrays, I felt that I had to go and check for myself, in case my memory was pranking me.  

As I drove into Catania from the airport, I quickly noticed that I saw the same low mountains and hills, and the same black smoke that I remembered from my younger years.  

As I fortified myself at Trattoria U Fucularu with a light meal (well, light for being a Sicilian dinner) and a glass of wine, I started chatting to the waiter about the mysterious volcano. He shrugged and just said “oh, that one”. When I showed him pictures of it on my laptop he walked away. 



As I walked around in Catania I spoke to a number of locals that was equally bemused by my horrendous Italian and the question about where the volcano was at. An elderly gentleman looking like Enzo Molinari winked at me and said “Ecco laggiú!” and walked away laughing. 

Disheartened I walked back to Palace Catania where I had checked into a suite that had both an award-winning photograph of the imposing mountain known as Etna, oddly enough it had an oil painting on the other side of lounge showing the low mountains that was amply visible from the terrazza of the hotel, where I fortified myself with an espresso and a glass of the nectar of the gods, Malvasia delle Lipari. 

Even without the view of Mount Etna the terrazza has a stunning view, I quite recommend it for a romantic drink. 



In the morning after a breakfast consisting of excellent coffee and assorted cheeses, I decided that it was time to go to the bottom of the ridiculously invisible volcano of Sicily. As I legged it towards those responsible for the volcano, at least according to the technorati of InternetSezioni di Catania Osservatorio Etneo Instituto Nazionale Geophisica e Vulcanologia. Never trust anything with that wordy a title, turned out to be the truth of the day. 

As I arrived at Piazza Roma number 2, I was not entirely surprised to not find any loftily named Italian authority. Instead, I found a large garish sign stating that the building was occupied by Boritzky Studios. 



By now I had been completely enthralled by this mystery, so I stepped inside the building and was greeted by a lady of such an immense Italian beauty that it was practically a handicap. She asked me what business I required of the Studio. 

As I explained my conundrum, she asked me to sit down and wait for the Direttore Benny Boritzky, and without asking I was given the mandatory ristretto. 

In the lobby where I sat there where two large oil paintings, one of the mayor Pier-Angelo Montalbano, and the second was of my cream-colour suited friend Signore Andrea Caggianella (I must admit that he looked quite striking in his Armani tailored suit. Above their portraits was a fresco sign painted with the phrase Saviours of Sicily. 


A most Universal Man 

Immaculately dressed in the latest fashion of Milano (yet another creation by Armani), Direttore Boritzky wafted in and asked me to follow him. He took me on a tour of the immense set of studios hidden in the old building. Some of the studios was accessed by walk-ways, and the spacious green painted rooms for animatronix was in the basement. 

As we walked around an army of assistants and actors worked hard at producing photographs and video clips of the erupting Etna.  

The man himself had a surprisingly lofty head of rambunctious white hair and his Italian betrayed him quickly as a non-native of the region. Infact it was heavily russo-germanic, so I ventured out and started to talk to him in German, after all my Russian has become quite rustic since I was declared persona non-grata in Russia. 

I all of a sudden remembered him from a famous clip shown on the BBC where photographers, scientists and Boritzky himself (playing the chief scientist), had to flee and take cover in an action riddled sequence. I felt queasy as I understood that all of them had been hired actors and studio assistants. 

As we sat down in his spacious office, we started talking about how he came to Berlin from the Soviet Union in the early eighties to study photography and cinematography and how he had fled the iron curtain after a fling with a relative to Honecker, ending up down and out in Sicily. 

Now that the scam had come out Benny Boritzky was quite happy to talk about everything and he started to explain the humble origins of the scam. As with so many things in Italy, it started with garbage. 



Back in the waning days of the previous millennium Sicily had a big pile of a problem caused by the garbage becoming a literal mountain. Recycling and waste management would be a very costly affair, but it had to be done even if it bankrupted Sicily again. 

A tender was put out for a contract, and it was then that Pier-Angelo Montalbano was contacted by Signore Andrea with a proposal. Instead of building costly recycling plants they could just cart of the garbage into the mountains, burn it all and then blame a fictitious volcano, while splitting the profit between them. 



Pier-Angelo wrestled with his consciousness for a full second before shaking Signore Andrea’s hand. Only problem was that they needed a most universal man to pull of the largest fake in human history. And who better to transform a burning mountain of garbage through light and magic into Europes largest volcano, than the out of luck Benny Boritzky. 

The few gullible tourists that turned up were diligently either arrested by police controlled by Montalbano, or kidnapped by men in cream-coloured suits employed by Caggianella. A bit of quick drugging, a camera filled by Boritzky Studios, and the unwitting tourist was sent home believing that they had climbed Faux Etna. 

After leaving Boritzky Studios I knew that my days were numbered, so I beat a hasty retreat to the airport and left Sicily for good. Since I landed yesterday, I have read about the tragic accident involving Boritzky. I am quite certain that before Saturday Signore Andrea himself will come and knock on my door. 

I can though meet my fate, knowing that the truth is out there. There is no such volcano as Etna. It was all faked in the name of burning garbage for profit 


262 thoughts on “The Sicilian Affair

  1. I am shocked at this news!

    @carl why has it taken you so long to break this??

  2. I’ve long suspected that there’s something not quite real about Mt. Etna. I’ve seen it many times while passing through the Strait of Messina, and always wondered you can’t see if from the north… your post makes clear to me that what I saw was a large billboard for their projector.

    That would explain why, when I thought I saw a lava fountain on it one night, it froze for a few minutes.

    Keep out of sight, Carl! They won’t like being exposed like this!

    • So… we didn’t see the beautiful snowy Signora Etna from our cruise ship whilst navigating the Messina Straits? I’m shocked, flabbergasted, horrified that it was all a smoke-screen!

  3. So, pactically a handicap huh? Thanks – made me laugh.

    Btw: I knew Boritzky under the name Anton Klec. He and his “cousin” lived nearby in Berlin-Kreuzberg. They were selling stuff in a small shop, that actually wasn’t that small after all (it was kind of long, reaching out far into the typical Berlin backyards, labyrinthine, dark … with Klec residing at the end in an apparent run-down former laundry, and maybe still a laundry). Klec disappeared when his cover was blown and an army of debtees stormed the place.

    • Ah, memories from my youth.
      I used to loiter around there when I travelled to Berlin before the wall fell. I think I might even have been there and met Klec.
      Last time I was in Berlin (and not just driven through) was about a year before the wall came down.
      I succeeded with being kicked out through Checkpoint Charlie 3 times in a single week after having been arrested at various black clubs on the east side and fined a surprisingly modest sum of money. I do think that is some sort of a record.
      Even the guards joked about it the third time around.
      Nothing can beat a Berlin party night ending in being arrested and chucked out through that now long gone institution.
      I should really come back one day to see that part of Berlin in its new form.

      • It is becoming a beautiful city. But now I am beginning to doubt that what I saw was the real Berlin..

      • Just curious: When they kicked you out, did they give you a small grey envelope (allegedly a “love letter”) that you were asked to deliver to an over-unsuspicious place in Schöneberg? To the big women?

        • No, I think it was a side income on their part.
          The fines was only payable in western currency. The last time around I only had Swedish Kronas left, they happily accepted those, without even converting them.

          I must admit that my brain was fairly imbibed at those occations, so I guess they just thought that I would forget any more nefarious things that they could have come up with.
          I do remember that the beer was incredibly cheep, back then a beer in a Swedish bar was 5€ (remarkably enough that is pretty much the same price 30 years later in Sweden).

  4. Wait, this can’t be. I have a clear memory of standing in a park in Catania watching the lava fountain and rivers of lava coming down the mountain… Now that I think about it, that’s the only memory I have from that trip. Does that mean…

    Carl, do you know what drug they typically use? I have since that trip hallucinated a lot about other “volcanoes”. I realize that now. I’m afraid there might be long term effects from the drug. Should I seek medical assistance?

      • So I’ll just sit back and continue to enjoy the hallucinations then. They are quite cool anyway so I don’t mind. Note to self: hide sharp objects.

  5. So they used Etna to burn gabrage and hide it as smoke emissions from volcanic activity?

  6. Boritzky sounds just like Bosse thats one of my old summerhouse neighburs.. : ) D :
    he burns his trash constantly .. causing a toxic armageddon of smoke that settles over the entire arera here. Perhaps They are connected 😜by the way both are a very toxic and polluting story and events

  7. I wonder if that much garbage buried and set on fire would actually make something resembling a volcano?…

    I know that subterranean coal fires can get to near magmatic temperatures, its basically that I suppose.

    But also is it April 1st in Sweden yet…? 😮

    • Oh yes! Google the eruption of Mount Edgecumbe in 1974.

      • No I mean like the heat of the reaction actually melting the rocks so that you get ‘lava’ flows, which would be just like normal lava flows physically but with no volcanic origin. Some coal fires do have fumaroles, maybe the most well known is Burning Mountain in Australia which was actually considered a real volcano until the early 20th century. The combustion of coal in a confined space can generate very high temperatures, its basically a natural blast furnace, so in theory it should be able to melt surrounding rocks.

        I did read about the story of Mt Edgecumbe though once, it looks like the habit of volcano pranks goes back long before Volcanocafe 🙂

  8. Gosh Carl, you are in big trouble!

    You must now hide somewhere very remote in the world. They will come after you.

    My volcanic suggestions:
    1. Kamtchatka
    2. Chad
    3.Theistareykjarbunga wastelands
    4. Deception Island
    5. Central Skåne Volcanic Province (a bit closer home for you)

    You choose.

    It grabbed my unaware attention for a good 5 minutes. Brilliant one!

  9. I wonder now about that Local Team… Strange name for Italian Bunch recording Etna pyrowhats…

    Benny Boritzky… Is Boris Behnke another (pseudo)pseudo?

    15 16 or 17 puros in few weeks is unrealistic too in a hindsight. We have been fooled.

  10. It’s the Armani suits that got me…and that faint accordion in the background…

  11. Last year’s April first gag about the 2021 reykanes eruption kind of became the truth…
    So it’s 100% confirmed truth. Also explains Carl’s recent absence from this forum.

  12. Bravissimo. I haven’t been so entertained since the last shaggy dog tale I heard a couple of decades ago. But, you missed out your encounter with the Killer Rabbit!

    They do say that history is written by the victor. Brave Sir Carl, you need to bravely run away, away. A ghastly catalogue of gruesome torture awaits you.

    …do I hear coconut shells? Ni! Ni!

    • Hey, have you all heard? Mauna Loa is in fact NOT a volcano!! It’s just a hill piled up by a rare breed of Hawaiian Termite. The lava coming out of Kilauea? That just the termites emptying out their sewers! Yep, you guessed it, there are no volcanoes in Hawaii!

  13. So that’s why Etna is never mentions in Montalbano! Puzzled solved.

    😆 😆 😆

  14. Now when the truth is out Etna will be renamed to Monte Composti.

  15. Yay !! { After hastily checking date…}

    Sorta twist is that there may be *much* toxic-waste covertly buried on upper flanks of Vesuvius…

  16. This was a real chocking story to read, but then, I began to wonder. Was the Vesuvius eruption in 79 AD an April fool’s joke gone terrible wrong?

  17. What Iceland needs is a volcano Cafe Reykjanes, if they can open an English Fish and chip shop specially for the eruption…
    Perhaps the T72 (or was it a T62) tank can be imported to Iceland, it would make a great Volcano Cafe sign poste, or have they scrapped it or even worse just chopped the gun barrel off!

    Hope the live drone guy is back for weekend.
    I thought that was a fools joke, a day early until I clicked…

  18. While we’re doing our April Fool’s Day, the south cone is doing something out of sight on the back side from both cameras, can someone find out what’s going on?

  19. Do you notice that the left spatter cone is frequently loosing large chunks of rock which are floating downstream on the lava river? I have marked these chunks with red boxes. Is that a normal behaviour of a horsehoe-shaped spatter cone?

    • i dont’t know how a horse shaped cone react but is obviosu that if a building of some sort doesn’t have a simetrical shape willl react at whatever pressure in weaky points…in my pov yap…the rims of it are more prone to collapse than of a volcano shape regular cone….for instance I’m looking forward to see what’s happening with the right vent…got some sort of dome cap…will collapse or in time wil be closed up to a point where the internal lava pressupe will explode it??

    • The burial ground before it was consumed by lava was behind a similar chunk from a previous unrecorded eruption I speculated yesterday.
      This volcano is possibly doing what it did last time.
      It does not mean it will stop soon though. This eruption could carry on and on.
      Perhaps last time it erupted something blocked the vent in an earthquake or the vent collapsed internally and blocked.
      I think if there was a previous eruption, it must have erupted after the glaciation, but before Icelandic human history.
      The burial ground ridge/possible detached cone piece shows well on this satellite and map viewer.,380376,z8,4

        • Interesting idea but it doesnt work. That area has actually been extensively mapped for every geological feature of obvious size and there isnt any Holocene eruptions in Geldingadalir, or even anywhere actually on Fagradalsfjall. Whatever little ridge was there wasnt a fossil lava boat, it could have even just been a grove of small plants, or most likely an artificial structure as the area has not always been uninhabited.

          I did notice an earlier time you said the spatter cone is more solid than the lava but that is the opposite of reality. It is probably an easy mistake to make hearing terms like ‘welded spatter’ but the cones are very fragile and low density, while lava that can pond away from a vent is able to degas and turn into dense solid basalt. The floating lava boats in Kilaueas lava lake are only a few months old and many of them are already falling apart and crumbling. The spatter cone at the old main vent from back in December too has also been lifted up with the lake even though it should have now long been buried, a bit like powdered chocolate that gets stuck at the bottom of a cup after you add milk 🙂

      • In this particular dale there are only signs of subglacial cinnamon activity, the small hyaloclastite ridge that the initial fissure opened up on was chief amongst them.
        That little bump in the bottom of the dale was more likely to be a remnant of glacial til

    • Yes – I’ve been intrigued by the quantity of them, too. I think they must do it at night because I never seem them fall during the day!

  20. All that smoke behind the older brother. Is that possible that he’s trying to open a new front in order to escape from all the people that say hello in the RUV cam?

  21. A little sidenote, it’s the first time since early 2019 that Grimsvötn has gone six months without a yellow bar (quakes pr month)

    • Has the focus in confirming earthquakes been on the Reykjanes Peninsula over the past month or so? So fewer confirmed elsewhere?

      • It is hard to measure faint earthquakes elsewhere in Iceland against the background noise from Reykjanes

  22. Yes, sadly, I am in the same boat as you when it comes to being on cruise ships passing through that strait. They hoodwinked us good. I “saw” Etna several times, often with just some outgassing, but that one night when it was fountaining and the image froze, clued me in that something was amiss.

    So yup, just a big projection screen, and the projector image froze.

    I’m now wondering if Stromboli is fake too. I mean, really… the idea of a village being on that tiny island with a volcano is preposterous.

    As for lava… I once saw molten slag being dumped at a copper mine at night, so I suspect that might be the cause of a lot of these “lava” sightings.

  23. Thanks for those timelapses, Virtual!

    You can actually see the slow movement of the cone walls that broke away. That’s amazing!

    • Do you see in this 5 minutes God’s great lava pathway or just a real chaotic behavior of it?

      “I was there, there is a valley…I have seen it with my own eyes!”

      “No it is all flat…”

    • This is breathtakingly astonishing. Chaos? I don’t think this is chaos, there are cyclical patterns discernable if looking at the valley as a whole.

      A’ā and pahoehoe flows, spreading like root tendrils into the lowest pathways, filling out and plumping up, breaking out with surges to cover the existing lava field. Then a pause as the lava degasses, cools, solidifies and shrinks. Platey a’ā piles up, bulldozing out, with some slumping maybe initiated from the buried unconsolidated sediments. Then the next surge or uptick kicks in and the process repeats again, and again, and again. I’ll have to watch this lots of times to understand it fully.

      Beautiful lava, indeed. I’d go so far as to say “You’re GORGEOUS, dahling, TEN!”

      • You think you are able to make simulation of this 10 days with a super computer which ends up with a consensus of over 90 % of the pathway? Yes now after it happened not before, which would be even more impossible… You have all the data now, compounds, concentrations, mineralization, flow amount, weather, etc.

        I would bet you could not even fit all the larger breakouts of the cone(s) into your model, so that they appear at the time of the video in your model…

        …it’s heterogeneous magma which interacts with the air and surface…ask a meteorologist how hard it is to predict a micro weather forecast of 10 days with the not complete homogenous air but compare to the change from magma to lava…

  24. Do we know anything about health issues from volatile sodium steams? Does IMO or someone else analyze the “salt” contents of the air or are they focusing only on sulfur, fluorine and carbon emissions?

    edited as requested – admin

      • When they talk about sodium it is sodium ions, not evaporated sodium metal. Sodium vapor would be impossible to exist in an oxidising atmosphere, it would burn immediately.

        It probably refers to a salt like NaCl or NaHSO4 being particulates in the plume, same as is measured in Hawaii.

          • The glow of lava against a cloudy sky. As simple as that. Have you ever seen greenhouses at night from a distance?
            greenhouses light polution

          • And again from where is the orangish glow with a wavelength near 589 nm?

            It’s from nascent sodium steam, maybe from the decomposes of sodium hydride (NaH, 638 °C) into nascent sodium and nascent hydrogen. The vaporizing of the sodium is not happening with electricity everything else is the same…

            In the papers they just convert the sodium concentration in the plume to the salts which Chad mentions or the oxide…because sodium gas isn’t stable…

            That’s why lava is not magma…

          • “That’s why lava is not magma…” I may not be an expert on the area, but I’m reasonably confident that the difference between lava and magma, is as simble as “above ground” vs “below ground”

        • Indeed…there’s a reason why Sodium has to be stored in paraffin!

  25. When you can’t decide which steam from Geldingadalir you want to watch so you use pip

    I don’t think my phone likes me that much right now

    • There’s a 5 second delay with the being ahead. So I have the RUV stream on my 50″ TV, and the mbl on my tablet. And VC on my phone. Winning.

      • When I am home RUV is streaming on my 65″ TV and mbl on my chromebook, but last night I was away from the house

  26. Strangely satisfying to watch rock crumble under the influence of lava…

  27. The story has been updated with our annual April-2 disclaimer.

    • “Any resemblance to any person anywhere in the world is purely intentional. ” For some reason this made me laugh like an idiot.

  28. The cause of the smoke from the back of the large cone (George Sr.) is now clear. It is from a crack that runs through the peak and now extends to the front. May or may not presage a collapse

    • Any bets on time of collapse? Just for fun and giggles…

      • Dragging through as a time lapse this morning, the emissions from the crack seem to have increased. May be down to wind direction but to my untrained eye, it is looking increasingly unstable. I reckon next 24hrs, most probably when the ruv camera is down or pointing in the wrong direction.

  29. Just seen a wanderer litter-picking. Not all are grockles.

  30. At the zooming event at 07:25, you can see there’s red shining through.which obviosuly doesn’t indicate anything else than that the surrounding rock is rather warm. But I was a betting man, I’d say that if/when a collapse is going to happen it will be the entire roof of the vent that goes(probably overly mr. Obvious here). Even though I’d love for it to be the outside that slides away and opens up for a lava stream on the right handside/behind.

  31. “New trace element and isotope analyses of the Geldingadalir lava provide further evidence that the magma feeding the Geldingadalir eruption has a different composition to the historical Reykjanes lavas. This shift in geochemistry potentially reflects a new and distinct batch of magma arriving from the mantle beneath Reykjanes.

    The Geldingadalir lava is marked by lower concentrations of incompatible trace elements, lower LREE/HREE ratios, and less radiogenic Pb-isotope ratios. These data suggest a greater contribution from higher degree partial mantle melts, sampling more depleted/refractory mantle components.” (with link to full report in a pdf inside)

    • Still no Au, Ag or Pt? No U, no Pu? Is the amount of Hg higher than it would appear in the trace elements group?

      • Any specific reason those elements should be present? (I don’t have any particular knowledge in this area)

        • If we are just looking how all this expensive energy is not transferred to money to lift the low Iceland króna, we may get some material values to rescue after all the waiting and watching is over…

          How many PW already heated the atmosphere?

          • I don’t understand your point. This is all very well known. Are you asking for numbers? Or are you complaining about their numbers (in which case you should present yours).

            internal heating of the Earth: 4.3 10^13 W. Of this, approximately 3 10^13W is from the mantle, 1 10^13 W is from the crust and the remainder is from the core. To this should be added tidal friction which produces another 2.5 10^12 W into the oceans. The geothermal heat comes out mainly along the mid-oceanic spreading ridges and so is also dumped into the oceans. Heat from eruptions is included in this energy budget. Solar irradiation is 2400 times larger than internal heating from the Earth. This is why yo can ignore heat from the Earth even in Iceland, and this is why we use solar panels, and why plants gets their energy from leaves rather than from the ground.

          • Albert, is this way the unafraid admins deleted Edwardlaneuk’s diagram?


          • Cementboy – why are you being purposefully abrasive towards Albert?

            We have two main rules here:

            1. Be nice (you’re currently breaking this)
            2. This is a science blog based on data and evidence.

            Anything that breaks those rules is removed. I’m not aware of what happened with the graph, I haven’t had chance to review the full timeline of activity. If it was from some psedu-science or other dubious source then Albert was quite within his right to remove it. If it was removed due to image hosting changes or expired content then you’re pointing the finger in the wrong direction.

            You’ve been warned.

          • After checking, I can see that the graphic in question has been removed or moved from the website it was hosted on, with nothing at all to do with any VC admin action. A graph from 8 months ago. When people link to files directly from other sites we obviously have no control over them. Feel free to check yourself (this was taken from the source code of the comment in question, remove the *** first):


            After reviewing the comments surrounding the graphic there was no issue I could see with it from anyone commenting on it.

            All I can see is a misguided attack on VC admins accusing us of censoring a graph. Do you have anything to say on the matter?

          • So, no apology to Albert or the rest of us VC admins for accusing us of removing an image when we had no control over it? No apology for being rather abusive to Albert?

            I thought I’d made it perfectly clear in my initial response; You’ve been warned about breaking the first rule: being nice. Any further breaking of that rule and you’ll be banned (temporarily and then permanently). I’m one of the VC admins/dragons with a background in website design and coding, firewall threat monitoring and general IT fault finding. Occasionally, I also write articles for VC as well.

            Introductions over, now you know the why and by whom.

          • Congratulations Cementboy.

            You now have the full, and undivided attention of 3 Admins who are not happy. If you wonder, that would be Albert, Beardy Gaz and me.

            You have broken the rules, and you are about to be ejected if you do not amend your ways.

            Simple as that.

            What rules?
            1. Be nice. (Really simple and good rule).
            In your case it falls down to:
            1.1 Always be nice to Albert because he writes nice articles about nice things and knows a heck of a lot of nice things that he is nice enough to write about. (Also a nobrainer rule)

          • Beardy Gaz, nice to meet you, I could not find any social media account with a impression of a real person behind this alias.

            Because I did only a print screen of Edwardlaneuk’s comment and not a local copy of the page with the source code. I’m not able to verify your explanation that the pic was linked to an external site and is now inaccessible.

            Also I don’t see that I was purposefully abrasive against the mysterious Albert alias. Abrasive by questions about Albert’s values or by not agreeing Albert’s physical theory that “the cold” is able to move up/down in the crust. So please don’t call me a pseudo scientist…

            In case you are writing the truth, I am deeply sorry about the censorship claim to the wrong group of administrators.

            BTW: “Be nice” isn’t the first rule of, is the second rule.

          • My social media presence isn’t relevant to this discussion, not sure why you brought this up?

            Before you make accusations about us censoring things it might be best to check out the facts first. It still sounds like you doubt my explanation of the missing graphic, I gave you the link to test yourself. Feel free to look at the source code of Ed’s comment and you’ll see the same graphic URL link I sent you in my other comment. No conspiracy here.

            Albert isn’t an alias, it’s his real name. He’s a professor at a university in the UK and he has a vast wealth of knowledge which is why he writes so many fantastic articles for VC. You were being abrasive as you were attacking him personally (he told me) and he had to remove a comment that would have been offensive to other people. That’s not the same as having a debate with different views, that’s always allowed. I didn’t call you a psedu-scientist, I said we remove material from psedu-scientific sources as a possible explanation as to why the graphic disappeared. This was before I fully investigated the cause of the missing graphic. Please read my messages carefully before you start inventing things.

            I am writing the truth, feel free to check yourself. I’ve got no reason to be dishonest with you and neither do any of the other admins on VC. We will always give reasons to our actions.

            Be nice IS the most important rule on VC, sounds to me like you’re being abrasive to me now. I’ve worked behind the scenes at VC for over 5 years so I know what the rules are. I don’t understand why you have this attitude, but VC isn’t the place for it. Feel free to continue the way you are and find yourself ejected (temporarily at first and then permanently) OR continue to discuss and debate subjects in the relevant areas (article or the VC Bar) whilst being nice. The choice is yours.

          • Cementboy has now been ejected through the airlock.

            We left his final comment to showcase why the Be Nice rule is important.
            Being snide and ironic in a way to be hurtful is not a good way to remain in here.

            And, calling Albert “mysterious” is the perfect example of this. Those who have been around for a time know who and what Albert is. Let us just say that he is both peer-reviewed and peer-approved beyond belief and leave it be at that. 🙂

            So, what to do if you find a Wild Albert that is lost in your city?
            He responds well to offerings of beer and nice conversations. After that he most often finds his way back home on his own.

            Anyways, do not be a dick unless you are Philip K Dick, then being a dick is approved.

    • The mantle where this magma originates must be almost a total liquid, basically like a magma chamber except its under the crust. Its on the Reykjanes volcanic area but I dont think we should be comparing it to other Holocene eruptions there, in my opinion. It has has only been going for 2 weeks but that is long enough to observe a decline in most eruptions and that isnt what we see at all, its still just as strong as when it began if not more so.

      • Superfast spreading ridges haves that all along the ridge axis on a massive scale .. decompression melt lenses

        Reykjanes is on a very slow ridge.. Perhaps This is signs that at least some influense from Icelandic Hotspot is there?

      • The latest report says ‘partially melted’ mantle. This is because of the lack of some elements that must have stayed behind as solid. Based on pressure and temperature, the melt fraction may be around 50% at the bottom of the deep crust.

        • That is still very high, most magma chambers are not even that melted let alone the source region. The magma is around 100 C colder than the source too it must be rising fast, its about as hot as it can possibly be at this location.

  32. There seems to be a lava surge, its flowing out pretty quick.
    The collapse of the South vent is slow motion, I wish I was there watching this.

    • How quickly does a surge propagate through the lava field? If we know this, then it would be easier to determine what is causing each surge.
      Itching to get our second jabs and get on a plane.

      Is there a long zig-zag crack splitting the two vent ramparts?

  33. 08:28:55 – smallish rock falls internally in Smeagol/Suđri.

    08:46 – N side of the lavafall breaks away. Lots of boulders rolling down.
    Should cause a slight surge.

    • Looks like Smeagol vent is forming a lava cave ”grotto”
      While Gollum vent is forming itself a lava pool

      • It looks like your wish has been granted 😊 Gollum has an en on suite hot tub!

  34. I have a simple hypothesis regarding the cone collapses. The cone material is clearly lighter (probably vesicular) than the degassed lava so we know it floats on the latter. As the eruption has progressed the lava pond has gotten deeper and gained in altitude. This is pushing up at the base of the cones, on the edges in particular but the process is progressive, and breaking these off, allowing them to float away.

    Interesting to speculate, if this idea has merit. what will happen to the cones as the eruption progresses….

    • I always wondered how Flakkarinn was able to float away on Heimaey.

  35. The smoke emissions from the right-hand “armchair” cone show a nice crack extending. It might not even last to 3:10pm (Icelandic time)!

  36. Breakout over the Northern levee, at right of mbl camera, 10:58. Also breakouts much further down-channel. If this causes major drainage, we will see how the camera angles interact. I’ve been bending my brain trying to work out what spatterberg and channel is which.

    • This may be in response to the creep of the big round Norđri boulder lip slowly inching towards collapse. It let go properly at 11:15:30.

  37. At “Can we prevent very large eruptions”:

    “Professor Agust Gudmundsson

    Very large volcanic eruptions (of the order of 1000 km3) pose catastrophic risk, and some even existential risk, to humankind. Preventing potential very large eruptions from happening is therefore of vital importance for humankind. The main method proposed here is hydro-shearing of the host rock, particularly the roof, of the source magma chamber/reservoir so as to reduce the likelihood of magma-chamber rupture (with dike/inclined sheet injection) as well as reducing the strain energy available to drive an eruption – in case it happens. Hydro-shearing triggers numerous small fault slips (and earthquakes), thereby minimising the stress difference in the chamber roof – or any layer where the method is applied. Hydro-shearing thus brings the state of stress in the roof/layer closer to lithostatic, whereby all the principal stresses are the same and equal to the overburden pressure. For a lithostatic state of stress, there is no tendency to brittle deformation, either through faulting or dike/sheet injection. Thus, hydro-shearing transforms the roof/layer into a stress barrier, a seal, that should be able to prevent dike/sheet injections and, thereby, eruptions.”

    Do you think that using hydro-shearing the rocks above a magma chamber is a real possibility to prevent large eruptions?

    • No. Toba was a ring failure. If you make the roof more flexible, you still have the ring fault. The best chance is to make the eruption happen earlier. Not later when it will be larger

  38. At 12:12 a huge plug of the right crater got off and wave of lava was gushing out

    • That was impressive. It started just before 12:12. You can now see right into the lava den.

      There is quite a large lava lake surrounding the cones (at least front and left), which is beginning to build up levees.

    • That was ewesome. I’m checking to see if the lava flows to the northern breakout, or if it manages to turn the corner into Jesper’s hot tub and make it over-top.

      • What is going on on RUV!? No more deportation sign blocking the view! This just has to stop. Give the grockles their own selfie protest webcam. I’ll personally donate.

          • I’m all for good disruptive protests, in the correct context. I don’t know what this one is about, but this interferes with science. Sigh.

          • I suddenly feel a lot more positive about deportations. Maybe I should rewind video, remove protestor, wipe memory. Morality restored.

          • I agree with Albert, this just zonkered my morals.
            I am against deportations, but I freely admit to wanting to deport those two idjitz.

            Now off for the Albertian mental flush to restore morals.

  39. Why mess with nature? Who will make the call whether a large volcanic eruption is good or bad? Value judgements are relative. If you are a victim, being buried under 100 meters of ash, is obviously going to cast a negative shadow on your future. If you are a descendant of survivors, you may think the reversal of global warming, a greatly reduced human population, sustainable production and consumption and a stabilized ecosystem are good and desirable outcomes. If the human species is to be exterminated, perhaps that is necessary for the evolution of a more appropriate species for the global environment. The self awareness of the individuals of such a species would be the same sense of being “me” as you. How is that a bad thing?

    • Intended as a response to dawmast on hydro shearing to prevent large eruptions.

    • I don’t think the Dutch will take this as a good argument not to build sea defences. Self preservation does play an important role, followed by preservation of our children’s future. We see the climate deniers as putting self over future, and rightly so. It is the Apres nous, le deluge, a powerful but ultimate self destructive motive. Where the choice becomes much harder is when by helping one you hurt another.

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