Earthquake Swarm in Southwest Iceland Skip to content

Earthquake Swarm in Southwest Iceland

A series of minor earthquakes was picked up by sensor by the geothermal area Krýsuvík on Reykjanes peninsula in Southwest Iceland on Saturday. The strongest of the earthquakes had a magnitude of 2.1 but most of them were below one.

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Krýsuvík. Photo by ESA.

The series started shortly before 4 pm and lasted for three hours. The epicenter of the earthquakes was below the southern end of Kleifarvatn Lake, ruv.is reports.

Geophysicist Kristín Waagfjörð at the Icelandic Meteorological Office said earthquake swarms like these are very common in the Krýsuvík area.

In 2010 and 2011 there was constant uplift at Krýsuvík of a total of eight centimeters. At the end of last year, the land started sinking again.

Earth scientists are monitoring the uplift closely. It might either be related to pressure from geothermal heat or magma which could lead to volcanic activity.

Volcanologist Haraldur Sigurðsson writes about the conditions at Krýsuvík in the latest issue of the print edition of Iceland Review, and the risk of lava flows reaching the capital.

Click here to subscribe to the magazine and here to read more about seismic and volcanic activity in Iceland.

ESA

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