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11 February 2024
Catastrophism, Geology, Plate Tectonics

The Iceland volcano has sparked back into life for the third time since roughly December of last year – see https://livescience.com/planet-earth/volcanos/iceland-volcano-erupts-for-3rd-time-triggering-lava-fountains-over-200-feet-tall … the Icelandic volcano, near the fishing town of Grindavik on the Reykjanes Peninsular, has burst back into life. It has opened up a fissure 2 miles in length that is gushing out lava and ash, and various noxious gases. Giant lava fountains between 164 and 262 feet in height – as well as a plume of ash, gases, and smoke etc. It comes from over 2 miles below the surface.

At https://livescience.com/planet-earth/volcanos/we-were-very-surprised-magma-under-reykjanes-peninsula-rushed-into-grindavik-dike-at-a-shockingly-fast-rate … magma flowed into the dike beneath Grindavik at a rate about 100 times higher than what was seen in the eruptions that took place between 2021 and 2023. The dike itself  formed after magma accumulated 5 km beneath the surface in what is known as a magma domain. This is like an expanding balloon inside the earth that can rupture.

This brings us to https://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2024/02/10/is-iceland-entering-a-new-volcanic-era/ … [and see also https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-68255375 …] which goes over the same third outbreak since December 2023, and the 6th since 2021. What is going on? Iceland is one of the most volcanically active places in the world – see for instance, https://en.wikipedia/wiki/Iceland_hotspot

At https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-024-00326-y … we have a Nature journal article on Santorini’s volcanic past – moving from the Mid Atlantic Ridge to the central Mediterranean basin. Underwater investigations have revealed evidence of a giant prehistoric eruption – 520,000 years ago [as well as some lesser eruptions between then and now]. In fact, it also highlighted a big eruption in AD726. It was said to be as comparable to the Mount St Helens eruption in 1980. Another volcano, Kolumbo, lies underwater just 7 km from Santorini. A double hazard then. It last erupted in 1650, an interesting date. Santorini, otherwise known as Thera, has magma pooling beneath it, even nowadays. It also leaks out in minor eruptions such as those of the 1920s and 1940s. They created lava flows on uninhabited nearby islands.

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