The next eruption on the Reykjanes peninsula could occur as soon as next week, RÚV reports. Land uplift at Svartsengi is occurring at a faster rate than prior to the January 2024 eruption in the area. Kristín Jónsdóttir, head of the natural hazards department at the Icelandic Met Office, says an eruption or other volcanic event could occur with little notice.
Magma chamber below Svartsengi
Land by the Svartsengi Power Plant and the Blue Lagoon has risen by up to 8 millimetres per day in recent days, slightly faster than before the January 14 eruption outside of the town of Grindavík. This indicates that the magma chamber beneath Svartsengi is likely expanding and could eventually causing an eruption or form a magma tunnel like the one that formed below the town of Grindavík at the end of last year.
Kristín believes such an event is not far off. “Assuming that this continues at a similar pace as has happened before, it can be expected that there will be another magma outburst in February, around mid-February, or even next week,” Kristín stated.
Eruption could occur with little notice
“The magma could start flowing without there being much seismic activity or us getting a lot of warning long before,” Kristín stated. She pointed out that seismic activity only increased one hour before the December eruption at Sundhnúkagígar.
Read more about the recent eruptions on the Reykjanes peninsula.