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Blue Haze from Eruption in East Iceland

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Blue Haze from Eruption in East Iceland

The sun seen through the haze.

The sun seen through the haze. Photo: Jóhannes Benediktsson.

A bluish haze caused by sulfur dioxide emitted in the Holuhraun eruption could widely be detected in East Iceland over the weekend. The haze was calm there this morning, as the weather is still and dry. The pollution is not considered a health hazard.

“It’s like a bluish haze that hangs over everything, especially apparent when you drive from Hérað [by Egilsstaðir] and southwards along the fjords. The mountains disappear into the haze and if the mountains are at varied distance you can see how the haze increases,” Helga Hreinsdóttir, managing director of the East Iceland Public Health Authority, told ruv.is.

Pollution detectors in Reyðarfjörður, which were placed there because of the nearby aluminum smelter, showed on Saturday that pollution levels have never been as high in the town since they were first recorded before 1970.

One of the four pollution detectors in Reyðarfjörður will be moved to Egilsstaðir to monitor the air quality there.

Helga stated it is unlikely that people will be affected by the pollution, except particularly sensitive asthma patients, who might sense discomfort in the respiratory system.

“A colleague of mine in Breiðdalsvík described the situation in the same way there, as did an acquaintance of mine in Höfn but we understand that it decreases considerably by Djúpivogur,” Helga added of the spread of the haze.

Seismic activity by Bárðarbunga has decreased since midnight and the Holuhraun eruption remains stable.

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