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Iceland volcano eruption did not spawn extreme heat wave

The Laki volcano in Iceland


The Laki volcano in Iceland. It is not a typical mountain and its fissure to the right stretch into the distance. Recent research shows that an enormous eruption by Laki from 1783-1784 did not cause an extreme summer heat wave in Europe, rather, as Benjamin Franklin speculated, the eruption triggered an unusually cold winter. The research will help improve predictions of how the climate will respond to future high-latitude volcanic eruptions.

This research was supported in part by the National Science Foundation (grant AGS 14-30051). Read more in the Rutgers news story Iceland volcano eruption in 1783-84 did not spawn extreme heat wave. (Date image taken: Aug. 31, 2002 ; date originally posted to NSF Multimedia Gallery: June 20, 2019)

Credit: Alan Robock, Rutgers University

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