Katla volcano calm over the weekend – Crisis Coordination Centre to meet again today

Although a few small tremors continued to stir and the roads around the area remain closed, Katla volcano was relatively calm over the weekend. The Crisis Coordination Center of the Scientific Advisory Board for the Icelandic Civil Protection is set to meet again today and reassess the situation. They raised the aviation color code from green to yellow last week and the contingency plan for an eruption was activated. A factsheet was issued on Friday regarding the seismic activity declaring a “civil protection uncertainty”.

The three most likely scenarios to occur were outlined; the first being that seismic activity will die out with no further consequences. Another likely scenario was said to be a glacial outburst flood [jokulhlaup] emerging from the glacier due to a small eruption under the icecap and the third and the most dreaded one being an eruption starting in Katla Myrdalsjokull glacier that reaches the surface of the glacier, accompanied with glacial outburst floods and ash fall, as was the case in the volcano under the Eyjafjallajokull glacier ice cap in 2010.

The factsheet read as follows. “The National Commissioner of the Icelandic Police and the District Commissioner of Police in South Iceland have declared a Civil Protection Uncertainty phase due to seismic unrest in Katla volcano in Myrdalsjökull. The contingency plan for an eruption in Myrdalsjökull has been activated accordingly. Uncertainty phase means that a course of events has started that may lead to natural hazard in the near future. Monitoring, assessment, research and evaluation of the situation is increased. Increased seismic activity started on September 29 and it is still ongoing. Following a meeting with the Scientific Advisory Board of the Civil Protection concluded that the seismic activity is caused by magma movement within the Katla caldera.” Featured image shows Myrdalsjokull glacier, under which Katla volcano rests.

The image is taken fro Wikipedia and credit goes to user Chris73