Three earthquakes of magnitude 4.5 or larger have hit the area around Bárðarbunga volcano in Vatnajökull glacier in the last 24 hours. In the past days, earthquakes around magnitude 5.0 have occurred in the area at an interval of approximately 30 hours.
The lava which has flowed from the craters in Holuhraun now covers 60 square km (23 square miles). The eruption is ongoing, although the volcanic activity has decreased somewhat. Scientists are examining data more closely and re-estimating the situation.
Residents in Ísafjörður and elsewhere in the West Fjords received a text message from the Civil Protection Department at around 11 pm yesterday evening, warning them that high pollution levels because of the Holuhraun eruption were present in the area and advising them to stay inside.
A subsidence of approximately 15 cm (5 in) occurred in the caldera of Bárðarbunga volcano in Vatnajökull glacier following a magnitude 5.4 earthquake hitting the northern caldera at 11:15 am yesterday, as indicated by the Icelandic Met Office’s GPS monitor in the caldera.
An increased number of earthquakes have been detected in and around Bárðarbunga volcano under Vatnajökull glacier in the past days. In the last 24 hours, almost 130 earthquakes have been detected at Bárðabunga.
Sulfur dioxide (SO2) gas pollution from the eruption in Holuhraun north of Vatnajökull glacier in the northeastern highlands is expected in most parts of the country today, but East Iceland will probably be pollution free in the afternoon.
High levels of sulfur dioxide (SO2) from the eruption in Holuhraun were detected at the air quality monitoring station in Grafarvogur at 2 pm. Levels were up to 500 mµ/m3, as stated in a press release from Reykjavík City Council.
Volcanologist Haraldur Sigurðsson wrote on his blog on Saturday that judging by the development of the caldera subsidence in Bárðarbunga volcano, which lies under Vatnajökull glacier, the eruption in Holuhraun, which is fed with magma from Bárðarbunga, will end on March 4, 2015.