COPENHAGEN: Icelanders are working round the clock to construct dykes the scale of three-storey buildings to guard an important energy plant and houses from lava flows, since volcanoes close to the capital Reykjavik that have been dormant for practically 800 years grew to become lively.
The six volcanic programs, which consultants forecast shall be lively for as much as three centuries, stretch underneath Iceland’s southwestern Reykjanes peninsula, dwelling to 30,000 folks, practically 8 per cent of the nation’s whole inhabitants.
They type an underground meshwork on the peninsula, stretching to the sides of the capital, which has witnessed 5 eruptions since 2021.
Amid considerations about an imminent eruption, authorities in November started constructing defence partitions across the peninsula’s Svartsengi geothermal energy plant.
Since then, practically 100 bulldozers, excavators and haul vans have been working nonstop across the plant, in response to Kristinn Hardarson, who heads operations at vitality firm HS Orka, the proprietor of Svartsengi.
In whole, some 560,000 cubic meters of gravel and solidified lava rock – sufficient to fill 20,000 vans – shall be used to guard the plant.
“They should divert the lava so it flows beside the obstacles. For those who attempt to cease it, the lava will simply construct up and finally go over the obstacles,” Vidir Reynisson, head of Iceland’s Civil Safety and Emergency Administration, informed Reuters.
Building of defences has additionally began across the nearby town of Grindavik, dwelling to certainly one of Iceland’s key fishing ports and practically 4,000 residents who have been evacuated in December earlier than the most recent eruption north of the town.
The primary barrier proved efficient in diverting lava away from Grindavik however when fissures opened on the opposite facet of the barrier, lava reached the city and set some homes alight.
The most important obstacles are about 40 metres huge, between eight and ten metres excessive, and 4 meters huge on the high.
Ending the seven-kilometre half circle round Grindavik is anticipated to take six weeks, Reynisson stated.
It can take roughly twice as a lot materials as was wanted at Svartsengi, in response to Ari Gudmundsson, a civil engineer at Verkis, an engineering firm engaged on the obstacles.