Hekla Volcano Activity Being Monitored Closely, Though Rumors Of Second Iceland Eruption Are False

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The Hekla volcano is Iceland’s most active volcano and a new Hekla eruption is feared.

The Hekla volcano has had more than 20 major eruptions since the 9th century, and Hekla has had eruptions in 1980, 1991 and 2000.

Many believe that the next Hekla eruption is imminent, and the recent Iceland volcano eruption in Eyjafjallajoekull has added to those fears.

But rumors of a Hekla volcano eruption today are false.

Twitter was filled with Hekla eruption rumors after an MSNBC Twitter feed @BreakingNews tweeted, “Large plume indicates second Icelandic volcano, Hekla, has begun erupting – watch live http://bit.ly/9iNfKE.”

That tweet was retweeted more than 600 times, though the feed later corrected itself.

The BNO News Wire Service also reported the eruption, stating, “REYKJAVIK (BNO NEWS) — The Hekla volcano in southern Iceland has erupted.”

BNO News Editor @RodrigoBNO later followed up, “Iceland office confirms no 2nd eruption. A cam was pointed at the Eyjafjallakokul but labled as Ekla.”

The Reuters News Service @Reuters followed up with a tweet of its own addressing the rumors: “Reuters has not issued an alert on a second volcano eruption #ashtag.”

Craig Kanalley First Posted: 04-19-10 02:26 PM | Updated: 04-19-10 03:11 PM

Source: The Huffington Post



On the LAKI eruption in 1783:

Consequences in Europe

An estimated 120 million tons of sulfur dioxide were emitted, approximately equivalent to three times the total annual European industrial output in 2006, and also equivalent to a Mount Pinatubo-1991 eruption every three days. This outpouring of sulfur dioxide during unusual weather conditions caused a thick haze to spread across western Europe, resulting in many thousands of deaths throughout 1783 and the winter of 1784.

The summer of 1783 was the hottest on record[citation needed] and a rare high pressure zone over Iceland caused the winds to blow to the south-east. The poisonous cloud drifted to Bergen in Norway, then spread to Prague in the Province of Bohemia by 17 June, Berlin by 18 June, Paris by 20 June, Le Havre by 22 June, and to Great Britain by 23 June. The fog was so thick that boats stayed in port, unable to navigate, and the sun was described as “blood coloured”

Inhaling sulfur dioxide gas causes victims to choke as their internal soft tissue swells. The local death rate in Chartres was up by 5% during August and September, with over 40 dead. In Great Britain, the records show that the additional deaths were outdoor workers, and perhaps 2-3 times above the normal rate in Bedfordshire, Lincolnshire and the east coast. It has been estimated that 23,000 British people died from the poisoning

The haze also heated up, causing severe thunderstorms with hailstones that were reported to have killed cattle, until it dissipated in the autumn. This disruption then led to a most severe winter in 1784, in which Gilbert White at Selborne in Hampshire reported 28 days of continuous frost. The extreme winter is estimated to have caused 8,000 additional deaths in the UK. In the spring thaw, Germany and Central Europe then reported severe flood damage.

The meteorological impact of Laki resonated on, contributing significantly to several years of extreme weather in Europe. In France a sequence of extremes included a surplus harvest in 1785 that caused poverty for rural workers, accompanied by droughts and bad winters and summers, including a violent hailstorm in 1788 that destroyed crops. This in turn contributed significantly to the build up of poverty and famine that may have contributed to the French Revolution in 1789. Laki was only a factor in a decade of climatic disruption, as Grímsvötn was erupting from 1783–1785 and a recent study of El Niño patterns also suggests an unusually strong El-Niño effect from 1789-93.

(Source: Wikipedia)

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