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The impacts of a Laki-like eruption on the present Swedish society
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Environmental Science and Analytical Chemistry.
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Number of Authors: 8
2017 (English)In: Natural Hazards, ISSN 0921-030X, E-ISSN 1573-0840, Vol. 88, no 3, 1565-1590 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In this study, we analyse and discuss the possible impacts on the Swedish society of a volcanic eruption on Iceland, emitting ash particles and large quantities of sulphur dioxide. A scenario was developed, based on the historical Laki eruption of 1783-1784, to describe the content of a potential sulphur fog over time in Sweden. Due to its high complexity and the many uncertainties in the underpinning scientific data, the scenario was developed using a cross-disciplinary approach incorporating experts from different scientific fields. An analysis of the impacts of the hazard on human health, environment and technical equipment was then performed and, finally, representatives from national authorities assessed the overall societal challenges in responding to the consequences of a massive volcanic eruption. The analysis shows that it is the peak concentrations of sulphur dioxide and sulphuric acid rather than the longer periods of moderate concentrations that contribute most to the negative consequences for human health and environment. Altogether, three societal challenges were identified: the ability to compile and disseminate relevant information fast enough, to perform continuous measurements of concentrations of different substances in affected areas and to meet the large demand for medical care.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 88, no 3, 1565-1590 p.
Keyword [en]
Laki-like eruption, National risk assessment, Sulphur fog, Scenario development, Dispersion modelling, Health impacts
National Category
Earth and Related Environmental Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-147031DOI: 10.1007/s11069-017-2933-0ISI: 000406767000013OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-147031DiVA: diva2:1144823
Available from: 2017-09-27 Created: 2017-09-27 Last updated: 2017-09-27Bibliographically approved

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Citation style
  • apa
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  • Other style
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  • de-DE
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  • en-US
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  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
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