Overall Green alert Volcanic eruption for Reykjanes
in Iceland

Event summary

GREEN alert: The Reykjanes Volcanic eruption is unlikely to require external humanitarian assistance based on the exposed population and coping capacity.

GDACS ID VO 1000080
Name: Reykjanes
Lat/Lon: 63.817 , -22.717
Event Date: 08 Feb 2024 UTC
Exposed Population 30km: About 30000 people within 30km
Exposed Population 100km: About 290000 people within 100km
Max Volc. Explosivity Index VEI: 4
Population Exposure Index PEI: 4
Inserted at: 08 Feb 2024 09:04 UTC


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Virtual OSOCC
Meteo assessment
Satellite products
Analytical products
Iceland - Volcanic unrest (ECHO 13 Nov 2023)Mon, 13 Nov 2023 11:29

  • Since 25 October, intense seismic activity related to a magma intrusion has started in the Reykjanes peninsula in south-western Iceland.
  • As of 12 November around 1,000 earthquakes - all below 3.0 M - have been recorded in the area of unrest. Most of the earthquakes are located in the region north of Grindavik Town, Reykjanes peninsula. The earthquakes are at a depth of 3-5 km corresponding to the lower part of the dyke intrusion. In addition, superficial deformation associated with the magma intrusion has been recorded in the area, this can be an indication that magma is moving closer to the surface.
  • Following this kind of activity, the civil protection has preventively evacuated all the people living in Grindavik Town, almost 3,700 residents and closed all the routes to the town. Moreover, the quakes and ground deformation caused by the magma intrusion resulted in damage to roads and buildings in Grindavik and its surroundings.
  • National authorities are continuously monitoring the area.
Volcano Reykjanes - EC/ECHO daily mapMon, 13 Nov 2023 19:07

A new EC/ECHO daily map is now available
Iceland - Volcanic unrest, update (ECHO 30 Nov 2023)Thu, 30 Nov 2023 12:40

  • The seismic activity due to magma intrusion that is affecting the Reykjanes Peninsula (south-western Iceland) since early November has continued to decrease in the last two days.
  • According to the Icelandic Met Office (IMO), as of 29 November, nearly 340 earthquakes were detected in the last 24 hours in the region of the magma intrusion, east of Sýlingarfell. Moreover, the rate of uplift is decreasing in Svartsengi area.
  • As of 28 November, the Icelandic Civil Protection reports that the building of a defense wall around Svartsengi power plant is ongoing and 3,700 people are still evacuated from Grindavik. Moreover, electricity, drinking water networks, several houses and roads have been damaged. The alert level have been downgraded from emergency to hazard phase.
  • Following the activation of the Union Civil Protection Mechanism (UCPM) on 20 November, five civil protection experts from Germany, Finland and Italy have been deployed.
Iceland - Volcanic eruption (ECHO 19 Dec 2023)Tue, 19 Dec 2023 12:15

  • On 18 December at 22:17 UTC, a 4 km long volcanic fissure started erupting lava. The fissure is located in correspondence of the dyke intrusion that formed in November almost 3 km from Grindavík Town (Reykjanes Peninsula, south-western Iceland).
  • The rate of lava flow during the first two hours of the eruption was approximately hundreds of cubic metres per second, with the largest lava fountains on the northern end of the fissures. In recent hours, lava is spreading laterally from either side of the newly opened fissures.
  • Following the seismic swarm due to the dyke intrusion recorded in November, about 4,000 people were earlier evacuated from Grindavik and the nearby Blue Lagoon.
  • National authorities have raised the Civil Protection Service Level to Emergency. The Civil Defense Coordination Center has been activated.
Volcano Reykjanes - EC/ECHO daily mapWed, 20 Dec 2023 19:08

A new EC/ECHO daily map is now available
Iceland - Volcanic activity (ECHO 15 Jan 2024)Mon, 15 Jan 2024 12:18

  • A new lava eruption started on 14 January at 7.57 UTC, and the fissure opening was located southeast of Hagafell Mountain. The southernmost part of the fissure is about 900 m from the town of Grindavík. Lava flow towards the town is ongoing and at 12.10 UTC on 14 January, a new lava fissure opened, and the lava flow affected the northern part of Grindavik. Gas pollution from the eruption is spreading south and southwest.
  • According to media reports, all the people living in the town of Grindavik have been evacuated for the second time - they were allowed to return to their homes on 22 December following the eruption of 18 December. In addition, some houses in the town have been burned by the lava flow as well as road 43 which connects the city with the airport and Reykjavik. In addition, the wall defenses built after the eruption in December have partially contained the lava, but some have been breached. 
  • The Civil Defense Coordination Center was activated on 14 January due to an impending volcanic eruption subsequently, the Civil Defense declared a state of emergency.
Volcano Reykjanes - EC/ECHO daily mapTue, 16 Jan 2024 18:54

A new EC/ECHO daily map is now available
Iceland - Volcanic eruption (ECHO 08 Feb 2024)Thu, 08 Feb 2024 11:47

  • A volcanic eruption occurred on 8 February at 6.11 UTC following a short seismic activity in the area north of Sylingarfell Mount. The eruptive fissure is approximately 3,000 m long, from the southern part of Sundhnúkur Mount and the eastern part of Stóra-Skógfell Mount, in the same location of the 18 December 2023 eruption.
  • According to the Icelandic Civil Protection Authorities, as the population of the town Grindavik has been evacuated since the 14 of January, there were no residents present at the start of the eruption.
Volcano Reykjanes - EC/ECHO daily mapMon, 12 Feb 2024 18:17

A new EC/ECHO daily map is now available
Detailed event map. European Union, 2024. Map produced by EC-JRC.
The boundaries and the names shown on this map do not imply official endorsement or acceptance by the European Union.

Updates on volcanic activity (Smithsonian)

The Smithsonian/USGS Weekly Volcanic Activity Report provides information about global volcanism on a weekly basis. Latest Reykjanes report has been published on 17 Jan 2024 10:08.
IMO reported that a seismic swarm began near the older Sundhn?kag?gar crater row on the Reykjanes peninsula around 0230 on 14 January. Both GPS data and borehole pressure readings indicated that magma was moving. IMO raised the Aviation Color Code to Orange (the third level on a four-color scale), noting an increased likelihood of an eruption. The locations of the earthquakes shifted towards the town of Grindav?k where, according to Almannavarnadeild r?kisl?greglustj?ra (National Commissioner of the Icelandic Police and Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management), evacuations started around 0300. A fissure eruption began at around 0757 just N of Grindav?k, SE of Hagafell, and was visible on webcams. The Aviation Color Code was raised to Red, but then lowered back to Orange at 0826 because no ash was detected in radar data. A Coast Guard helicopter was dispatched to investigate the eruption site. A NE-SW-trending fissure was visible and notably lengthened within about 10 minutes according to a news article. The fissure grew to about 900 m long and crossed through the eastern part of a curving E-W-oriented earthen berm built to deflect lava flows away from the town. Lava fountaining occurred along the length of the fissure. Lava spread perpendicular from the fissure and to the SW, covering the E half of the berm, though the longest flow traveled WSW along the berm and away from the town. Construction workers managed to reach their heavy equipment that was being used to build the berm and drive them to safety away from the lava flows. Lava covered part of Grindav?kurvegur road and overtopped a small area of the berm at the road, flowing S. A shorter second fissure that was about 100 m long opened at 1210 on 14 January to the SW of the first and S of the berm, about 200 m from the Efrah?pi neighborhood in Grindav?k. Lava flows traveled S, entering the town and setting at least three houses on fire. This fissure was no longer active by 1640 on 15 January and the effusion rate at the larger, main fissure had decreased. Seismicity and the rate of deformation had also decreased, though deformation near the S part of the magmatic dike near Grindav?k continued to be detected. Displacement within the town was as high as 1.4 m during 14-15 January; ground cracks had developed, and existing ones had expanded. Thermal images from a 15 January drone flight indicated that previously mapped fissures SW of Grindav?k had significantly enlarged. Lava effusion at the longer fissure was concentrated at two of four main vents. Lava effusion at the main fissure ceased around 0100 on 16 January. Seismicity continued to decrease, though event locations indicated that magma movement continued. Most of the seismic activity was concentrated near Hagafell, close to the main fissure. IMO lowered the Aviation Color Code to Yellow at 2105, noting the ongoing decline of seismicity. A man working on filling cracks in Grindav?k fell into one of the cracks on 10 January and was unable to be located. Hundreds of rescue workers searched for the man but due to unsafe conditions and landslides occurring inside the crack the search was stopped on 12 January. Sources: Almannavarnadeild r?kisl?greglustj?ra (National Commissioner of the Icelandic Police and Department of Civil Protection and Emergency Management),Icelandic Meteorological Office (IMO),Icelandic National Broadcasting Service (RUV),Independent
See the detail here

Latest media headlines

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Estimated casualties (PAGER)

USGS estimates the number of casualties for each earthquake for the Prompt Assessment of Global Earthquakes for Response (PAGER) product.
The graph shows the current fatalities estimate.

Exposed population

Data, images, links, services and documents

For this events, GDACS has links to information from the following sources: EC-JRC (32), (2), INGV (2), WMO (1), INFORM (2),