Iceland’s Suffering Animals

No, the Eyjafjallajökull volcanic eruption isn't only about inconvenienced airline passengers or the canceled premiere of Iron Man 2.

Iceland's animals are in danger of fluoride poisoning and other maladies as a result of inhaling the volcano's toxic ash. Hundreds of farms were evacuated after the eruption. Afterward, many farmers had trouble even locating their livestock in the resulting ash haze. Birds can't fly, cows can't drink from ponds mucky with ash, and closed roads means milk will have to be dumped instead of sold.

The volcano itself may continue to erupt intermittently for years. "While it's unlikely the plume will be disruptive during that entire time," reports National Geographic, "some problems could persist or even increase if the eruption grows or is joined by another from the nearby volcano Katla." Indeed, some Iceland scientists are predicting that climate change will cause even more eruptions down the road.