This little fellow is causing disruption to travel all over Europe. Many airports throughout Europe have closed through the weekend. Passengers are stranded from all over the world, including at Dulles.

Why is a simple little volcano causing such disruption? The massive cloud arising from the volcano is spewing all sorts of debris, fine particles, dust and ash into the atmosphere. There is danger of this ash annihilating a jet’s engines. So, most planes are grounded until things calm down over in Iceland. Meanwhile, there are some pretty irate passengers.

The molten lava is melting glaciers which is causing flooding in Iceland.  Don’t they already have disasterous finacial problems?  Do we risk the same danger in the United States?  How about when Mt. St. Helen’s acts up?

UPDATE: No end in sight. The volcano is still errupting. Even after it stops it will take several days for the volcanic ash to dissipate.

Washington Post Report

19 Thoughts to “Volcano Woes Grind Travel to a Halt”

  1. Emma

    Excellent video. Nature can be amazing.

    I read last night that volcanic events actually can cause global cooling.

  2. kelly3406

    No one seems to be talking about it, but this could have the potential to slow (or reverse) the economic recovery that seems to be starting.

  3. I would think it would cause cooling because it is blocking the sun. I seemed to remember reading something about about a volcanic eruption causing snow in July or something like that. I thought it was Krakatoa in 1883 but I think I am wrong. It apparently is a different one:

    This temporary climatic cooling peaked during the summer of 1816 was the peak of this cooling and the reason the peak fell in the summer of 1816 is almost certainly die to the eruption of the Tamboro volcano east of Java in April 1815 (believed to be one of the most explosive eruptions of the last 10,000 years). At the time sunspots were blamed for the unseasonable weather (Laskin 1996). Anyway, this eruption put more than 150 million tonnes of dust in the atmosphere which gradually spread around the globe acting as a veil reflecting incoming solar radiation back into space and cooling the earth (temporarily) which in turn caused a change in the world’s, and in particular the northern hemisphere’s, weather patterns. Some dust from volcanic eruptions in the West Indies in 1812 and Philippines in 1814 was also probably still the atmosphere (Lamb 1995) and this will have helped the global cooling process too.

    So if Tamboro erupted in 1815 why wasn’t the summer of 1815 rather than the summer of 1816 the year without a summer? Well, the answer is that there is a time lag between a volcanic eruption and a change in weather patterns caused by the length of time needed for stratospheric winds to distribute the volcanic dust particles around the world.

  4. Geez what a geek I am. I love volcanoes.

    Kelly, it certainly could affect economic recovery…at least in my uninformed opinion.

    Just out of curiosity, we seem to be having very strong earthquakes ever since Haiti….or is it my imagination?

  5. Visitor

    About the earthquakes…Google “red car syndrome”. It’s the same thing. There seem to be more earthquakes because when you hear about them they stand out. Same thing with hurricanes after Katrina.

    It’s not your imagination, it’s just how our brains work.

  6. Do you think that is what it is or that we really are experiencing more earthquakes with large magnitudes? I think we are having more big ones. Are these things cyclical?

  7. Wolverine

    The last prediction I saw said that they don’t really know when this will stop and to expect more ash and debris in the atmosphere this coming week. I don’t know about the economy in general, but it sure looks like ground and sea transport in Europe are having an unexpected windfall. I hear British comic John Cleese paid a taxi driver $4500 to drive him from Oslo to Brussels. Heard another taxi driver advertising that he would drive you anywhere in Europe for $1400 plus petrol. He might get a bit of business if and when the trains fill up.

  8. Poor Richard

    This is all Obama’s fault !

    Him and them thar other libs!

    You can betcha Bad Boy Beck will explain it all!

  9. punchak

    Imagine all the airmail that isn’t being delivered!
    Fruit and flower shipments sitting in warehouses or on the tarmacs.
    SAS is planning to let over 2000 employees go, until traffic opens again. Probably same with other airlines.
    etc. etc. This is big!

  10. Wolverine, sort of makes you wish you had a taxi in Europe, doesn’t it? I would be running back and forth under the channel, snicker.

    When will it hit us?

  11. It’s not Beck’s fault. It’s George Bush’s fault! BOOOOOOSSSSHHH!

    Oh, that and global warming. I mean, the glacier IS melting, and that section of the globe is on fire…….

    Moon, the jet stream has it going over Northern Europe. It has to go the long way around. Predictions are for a colder summer over Russia. Great, just what they need…. a poor harvest.

  12. I was rather waiting for Pat Robertson’s explanation myself, Poor Richard. Must have to do with end times. The earth is barfing or something. Well, Beck boy could have a barfing earth also. Beck has reined in his graphic earth descriptions lately though.

    The volcano is supposedly costing $200 million dollars a day to european economies. It probably isn’t helping ours either.

  13. Visitor

    If only we had listened to Al Gore and gotten rid of our “evil” cars. This volcano wouldn’t have erupted, hurricane Katrina wouldn’t have hit New Orleans, and Travis wouldn’t have had to shoot Old Yeller.

    It’s kind of funny to see how we are regressing back to primative Earth worship and assigning human causes to natural phenomenon. When Pat Robertson says we’ve made the Sky God angry, we say he’s crazy. But when Al Gore says we’ve made the Earth God angry, we give him a Nobel Prize.

  14. All good things must come to an end. Isn’t there a happy medium somewhere?

    How many people are willing to sit here right now and say that there is no such thing as global warming caused by man? Who is that positive man has had no impact on the earth?

    I doubt if anyone is that brave. I sure wouldn’t go out on that much of a limb. Surely we have created environmental dangers and hazards on the earth, and in the seas and atmosphere. Anyone remember cleaning up rivers going out of West VA, Pittsbourgh, DC? How about those Chesapeake Bay oyster beds?

  15. Visitor

    Global warming may be going on, but that doesn’t mean it’s causing earthquakes, hurricanes or volcanoes. All of which have been blamed on global warming. That’s where it crosses the line from actual science to “We have angered Mother Earth with our evil SUVs and now we are being punished”

  16. Time lapsed photography of the dust cloud spreading from Iceland

  17. Thanks Cargo. Interesting.

    Visitor, I understand your point. I read that the melting glaciers are affecting the magma chambers. Maybe. My first impulse is to say well Old Faithful isn’t bothering ITS magma chambers. But as I have stated, I am not a scientist. (and you all should be glad)

    I think global warming might affect hurricanes, sand storms and weather patterns but earthquakes and volcanoes? That is totally a stretch, in my opinion.

  18. Wolverine

    Better start worrying about all those earthquakes. According to my ancient Viking ancestors, Loki, the blood brother of Odinn, chief of the gods, was an evil, troublemaking deity. As punishment for one of his misdeeds, the other gods chained him to a rock. The Vikings all believed that earthquakes were caused by Loki writhing in anguish against his chains. They also believed that, if Loki escaped those chains, it would be the beginning of the end — the Ragnarok or “Doom of the Gods.”

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