The eruption, which occurred Monday evening on the Reykjanes peninsula in southwest Iceland, projected lava and smoke at an altitude of more than 100 meters.
This new eruption, the fourth in two years, took place three kilometers away from Grindavik, a small fishing town about 40 km southwest of the capital Reykjavik.
The city has been evacuated since November 11 following hundreds of earthquakes caused by the movement of magma under the earth's crust, a potentially harbinger of further damage. a volcanic eruption. Buildings and roads in the city were extensively damaged by this seismic activity.
The eruption takes place 40 km from Reykjavik.< /p>
If the Icelandic authorities take the volcanic eruption that occurred on Monday very seriously, they are nevertheless reassuring.
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Flights to and from Iceland are not disrupted and international flight corridors remain open, the Icelandic government said in a statement.
The eruption does not pose a threat to life.
A quote from the Icelandic government, via press release
The power of the eruption seems to be decreasing, for its part wrote the Icelandic Meteorological Institute (IMO) on its website Tuesday morning.
That activity is already decreasing is not an indication of the duration of the eruption, but rather that the eruption is stabilizing, however, indicates the institute.
This new eruption, the fourth in two years, took place three kilometers from Grindavik, a small fishing town located about 40 km east southwest of the capital Reykjavik.
All roads around Grindavík are closed and are expected to remain closed for the next few days, police announced on Facebook.
Our thoughts are […] with the local population [of Grindavík]. We hope for the best, but it is clear that this is a considerable eruption, wrote the head of the Icelandic government, Katrín Jakobsdóttir, on the same platform.
No country is better prepared for natural disasters than Iceland, she had already said a month earlier.
We are now waiting to see what the forces of nature have in store for us, Icelandic President Gudni Johannesson said on the social network X. He added that the protection of lives and infrastructure was the priority.
People look at the illuminated sky from the capital of Iceland, Reykjavik.
The eruption opened a 4 km fissure, from which jets of lava emerged. At its southernmost point, the fissure is still 3 km from the town of Grindavik, the IMO said.
The eruption is taking place north of the watershed, so the lava does not flow towards Grindavik, said the geologist Bjorn Oddson at the RUV public channel.
[Seismic activity ] could last several months, but also stop later today or tomorrow.
A quote from Halldor Geirson, Associate Professor at the Institute of Earth Sciences at the University of Iceland
The Svarstengi geothermal power station is two kilometers west of the eruption and provides electricity and water to around 30,000 residents in the area. Authorities built a protective wall around the facility after seismic activity in November.
The head of civil protection and emergency management in Iceland Vídir Reynisson warned that this new eruption is not a tourist eruption and you need to observe it from a long way.
Volcanic eruptions have become major tourist attractions, attracting nearly 680,000 visitors, according to the Icelandic Tourist Board.
In October, signs of soil swelling were detected near the Blue Lagoon, famous hot baths with turquoise waters very popular with tourists. The site had partially reopened on Sunday.
Until March 2021, the Reykjanes peninsula, south of the capital Reykjavik, had been spared by eruptions for eight centuries.
Since then, there have been two others, in August 2022 and July 2023, a sign, for volcanologists, of a resumption of volcanic activity in the region. According to volcanologists, the new cycle in the peninsula could last decades.
Thirty-three volcanic systems are considered as active in this country of fire and ice, the most volcanic region in Europe.
The Eyjafjallajökull volcano spewing lava, smoke and steam on April 19, 2010.
In 2010, the Eyjafjallajökull volcano, in the south of the island, was the cause of the biggest disruption to air traffic in peacetime. A title since erased from the shelves by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Other volcanoes, like Askja in the uninhabited central highlands of Iceland, have recently shown signs of activity.
With information from Agence France-Presse and Reuters< /em>