The fissure eruption of Bárðarbunga-Veidivötn 2014-15 to Holuhraun in Iceland has produced 1.5 cubic kilometers of lava, which covered an area of approximately 86 km², making it the largest eruption of the country in over 200 years .
The daily emissions of sulfur dioxide exceeded all emissions of human origin in Europe during 2010 by a factor of at least 3.
Holuhraun - degassing of the lava lake on the active fissure 1/21/2015 - photo Dr. Anja Schmidt / Twitter
Overview of the 2014–2015 eruption at Holuhraun showing (a) the locations of the Icelandic towns and volcanoes, including the Bárðarbunga-Veiðivötn volcanic system. The red rectangle outlines the region shown in Figure 1b. (b) Map showing the Bárðarbunga caldera (dashed gray line) and the lava flow field and vents of the 2014–2015 eruption. The extent of the lava flow was digitized from a SENTINEL radar image produced by the University of Iceland. Vent locations have been drawn from Operational Land Imager (on Landsat 8) acquired on 6 September 2014 - doc. Dr.Anja Schmidt & al réf en sources
The findings of the study published September 23, 2015 in the Journal of Geophysical Research, of the Dr. Anja Schmidt and his colleagues (ref. To sources) present the observations in September 2014 for the quality of air for North Europe, both from the satellite data and the simulation model of volcanic SO2 of the Met Office. During this month, a total of 2.0 +/- 0.6 million tons of SO2 were emitted by the eruption ... for comparison, the Laki eruption in 1783-1784 produced in 8 months 60 times more sulfur dioxide and interfered with the European climate of the mid-1780s.
Sulphur Dioxide Emissions of Holuhraun compared to other historic eruptions (the scale is logarithmic) - Doc. volcanofiles 11/12/2014 - pic.twitter.com-wONcesfRXO
The study showed that the SO2 was transported over long distances and detected at monitoring stations to over 2750 km of Iceland. These observations and the models showed that the volcanic pollution of the Icelandic fissure eruption may reach northern Europe and temporarily degrade the air quality.
The study also notes that the number of SO2 monitoring stations in Europe is too low, since the 1980, result of an imposed reduction of anthropogenic emissions ... and insufficient in case of a future repetition of an eruption Laki kind.
Maximum 1 h mean sulfur dioxide (SO2) mass concentrations (µg/m3) measured at the surface during September 2014 at air quality monitoring stations across Northern Europe (see also Table 2). Circles denote that these peak concentrations occurred between 4 and 9 September 2014, triangles denote the period 18–25 September 2014, and squares denote any other date in September 2014. The concentrations are color coded using the United Kingdom Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) air quality index warning levels for 15 min mean SO2 concentrations with green = low pollution levels, orange = moderate pollution levels, and pink = high pollution levels, and dark red and violet = very high and hazardous pollution levels [Connolly et al., 2013]. Note that at times, in Iceland higher SO2 mass concentrations have been measured after September 2014, which are not shown. - doc. Dr.Anja Schmidt & al réf en sources
Satellite detection, long-range transport, and air quality impacts of volcanic sulfur dioxide from the 2014–2015 flood lava eruption at Bárðarbunga (Iceland) , , doi:10.1002/2015JD023638.
Anja Schmidt,Susan Leadbetter, Nicolas Theys, Elisa Carboni, Claire S. Witham, John A. Stevenson, Cathryn E. Birch, Thorvaldur Thordarson,Steven Turnock, Sara Barsotti, Lin Delaney, Wuhu Feng, Roy G. Grainger, Matthew C. Hort, Ármann Höskuldsson, Iolanda Ialongo, Evgenia Ilyinskaya, Thorsteinn Jóhannsson, Patrick Kenny, Tamsin A. Mather, Nigel A. D. Richards, Janet Shepherd