A recently released study from the University of Leeds indicates that the 6 month eruption from the Bardarbunga volcano in Iceland emitted three times as much toxic gas than all man-made sources in Europe.
According to an article in Wired UK the eruption started in August, 2014, and continued until February, 2015. At points, the volcano expelled as much as 120 kilotons of gases a day, eight times the rate of all European industry. The article quotes Anja Schmidt, author of the study from the University of Leeds, "This was a truly spectacular eruption -- the biggest in Iceland for more than 200 years. It became clear very quickly that the eruption was producing truly staggering amounts of sulphur dioxide -- a toxic gas," .
In an sobering side note, John Stevenson, co-author of the study at the University of Edinburgh, told WIRED, "For the next two decades we'll be in the peak of Icelandic rifting period" -- a period of heightened volcanic activity that occurs every 140 years or so -- meaning "there will be a chance that there will be more eruptions like this one in the next 20 years."
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