The Icelandic Meteorological Agency isn’t ready to declare the Meradalil eruption officially over, but the volcano’s tremors finally stopped at the site on Saturday night. It is no longer there and there is still some activity in the main crater, but it may already be closed.
“Activity and accompanying tremors in the Meradaryl crater have gradually decreased over the past three days, to the point where no volcanic eruptions are currently visible in the crater and tremors are almost non-existent,” said the University of Volcanology and Natural Icelandic. The Hazard Group wrote on its Facebook page Saturday afternoon: “However, magma gas emissions are still stable. This trend in eruptive behavior is very different from what was observed at the end of the individual eruptive episodes of the 2021 eruption, which ended very abruptly. This rather slow and gradual decline in the [of] Meradaryl eruption in 2022.
Disappointment for some, relief for others
The Meradalil eruption began at around 1:18 pm on August 3, not far from last year’s Geldingadalil eruption on the Reykjanes peninsula in southwestern Iceland. By August 13, the lava flow had slowed significantly after about 10 days, to about one-third of its original velocity. Now all volcanic tremors have subsided and the main vent appears to be closed. However, there must be days or weeks of activity at the location to officially declare the eruption over.
While those who haven’t yet had the chance to see the eruption may be disappointed, residents of the Reykjanes Peninsula are relieved that the lava flow was contained in the Meradaryl Gorge where it did not threaten nearby roads and energy infrastructure. Search and rescue teams who have been monitoring the site and its tens of thousands of visitors are probably also looking forward to the holidays.
Volcanologists and geologists say the eruptions of Meradaryl and Geldingadalil mark the beginning of a new active volcanic period that could last for decades or even centuries on the Reykjanes Peninsula.
The post about the likely eruption of Meradaryl first appeared in the Iceland Review.