Photo: Science struck
Relationship between Earthquake and Volcanic eruption
An Earthquake is a sudden shaking of the earth’s surface due to the Seismic waves which are the result of the Earth’s lithosphere. Now Earthquakes can be weak with a low magnitude which can barely be felt. Sometimes they can be of a moderate density and can cause tremors that can be felt and damage to a minimal level. Earthquakes of a larger magnitude and fatal and can destroy property as well as life. The Japan earthquake around a decade ago caused a tsunami (a probable consequence of a high magnitude Earthquake of either 8,9 or 10 on the Richter Scale), that was of such a large extent that it changed the position of Japan on the World map. When the epicentre of a large earthquake is located offshore, the seabed may be displaced sufficiently to cause a tsunami. Earthquakes can also trigger landslides. Earthquakes can either be natural or man-made. The 1960 Chilean earthquake is the largest earthquake that has been measured on a seismograph, reaching 9.5 magnitude on 22 May 1960. The deadliest was the Indian Ocean Earthquake of 2004.
A Volcanic eruption is the expulsion of gases, rock fragments, and/or molten lava from within the Earth through a vent onto the Earth’s surface or into the atmosphere.
Earthquakes can cause volcanic eruptions by severe movement of tectonic plates. Similarly, volcanoes can trigger earthquakes through the movement of magma within a volcano. Both of them are the deadliest natural events occurring on our planet. Earthquakes can create new fractures in the Earth’s crust, which can allow magma to escape from a previously dormant or inactive volcano, though, not necessarily all the time.
The recent situation in Iceland
Iceland’s volcanism can be attributed to its location on the Mid Atlantic Ridge in the North Atlantic Ocean, where the Eurasian and North American plates are moving apart a few centimetres per year.
Photo: Rebecca Ann Hughes & Euro News Travel
‘As hundreds of earthquakes shake Iceland, authorities warn of a ‘high likelihood’ of volcanic eruption’. Evacuation was done in the apprehension of the Volcanic eruption in the region of Grindavik. According to the Icelandic Meteorological Office information, 1,500 to 1,800 earthquakes have been recorded daily in the region. The volcanic system near Reykjavik was elevated to orange. ‘An Orange alert means that the
volcanic system is showing heightened unrest with increased likelihood of eruption’, said the Iceland Met Office. They further added that “In case the current intrusion will evolve further and magma will start propagating towards the surface in this area, the most likely outcome would be an effusive eruption,” the Iceland Meteorological Agency said. “However, the presence of shallow ground water in the vicinity of the ongoing magmatic accumulation might trigger some short-lived explosions whenever magma encounters these reservoirs.” These statements were recorded in the start of November. A few weeks ago the authorities recorded 800 Earthquakes in the span of 14 hours.
The recent update is that the danger of the Earthquake has been ebbed, but still it’s not completely over, so the people still are refraining from going back to the evacuated areas until and unless there is no danger completely. ‘Residents are now allowed to go home during the day to check on their properties and belongings but until scientists give the all-clear, people cannot permanently return’, Jon Thor Viglundsson, a spokesman for Iceland’s Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management, said. ‘While damage to individual buildings has been limited’, Mr Viglundsson said, because Grindavik sits on a fault line, “the damage to infrastructure is great and affects most of the town.” After thousands of Earthquakes in the past few months, the magnitude has though decreased and the danger of the eruptions as well, but it has not completely passed.
Though the travel has also not been denied to Iceland, the authorities have tried to warn beforehand, the travellers that the eruptions have increased above a normal level on Reykjanes peninsula.
In the past few hours, Iceland has been shaking by 100 Earthquakes While hundreds of earthquakes are still hitting the surrounding area daily, “seismic activity continues to decrease”, said the Icelandic Met Office, adding: “The likelihood of an imminent volcanic eruption diminishes with time”, but the danger still persists.