A volcanic eruption has been detected on Iceland’s Reykjanes peninsula, where thousands of earthquake swarms rattled the region in recent days.
The Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO) reported the eruption is near the Fagradalsfjall mountain in the southwestern part of the country, located about 19 miles from the capital, Reykjavik.
Local news Iceland Monitor published a live video feed of molten lava spewing from a fissure.
Last year, an eruption on the peninsula was the first in 800 years and produced lava flows for several months. In 2010, the eruption of Eyjafjallajokull in another part of the country catapulted enough ash and dust into the atmosphere, canceling tens of thousands of flights across Europe because ash concerns could damage jet engines.
Icelandair tweeted about today’s eruption because this means big money for the travel industry. Last year’s eruption drew more than 350,000 visitors to Reykjavik. The eruption was the longest recorded in half a century and left tourists dazzled by the nighttime glow of streams of molten rock.
Look who’s back!🌋A #VolcanicEruption started this afternoon from a 100-meter fissure in Meradalir at Fagradalsfjall, the site of last year’s eruption. Iceland’s summer just got hotter! Watch it live here: https://t.co/bRaMPEBVQ2
— Icelandair (@Icelandair) August 3, 2022
Einar Hjorleifsson, a natural hazard specialist at the IMO, told Bloomberg “that the magma flow was double what was observed in the last eruption … and what that means in terms of the size of the eruption is unclear at this point.”