Iceland (Modern World Nations) by Roger K Sandness, Professor Charles F Gritzner

By Roger K Sandness, Professor Charles F Gritzner

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The magma chamber is the main heat source for these high-temperature areas. 62 mile (1 kilometer). Inactive magma chambers or lava flows are the main source of heat for these waters. Usually there are alkaline water springs and geysers with dissolved minerals such as silica associated with these low-temperature fields. The low-temperature areas that produce hot-water springs are found at some 250 localities in Iceland, making it Earth’s major geothermal country. Such geothermal areas are formed when surface water, such as cold rainwater, slowly filters down into the earth’s porous bedrock through fissures, crevices, or volcanic crust.

Most came from Norway, but Sweden and Denmark also contributed to the wave. Others arrived from the British Isles, particularly Ireland and Scotland, and from the many small islands surrounding northern Great Britain. By 930 nearly all the good coastal land was claimed and occupied. It is estimated that some 60,000 people lived on the island at that time—nearly a quarter of the number living there today. The base population, racial stock, and cultural foundation that would characterize Iceland more than a thousand years later were now in place.

Home to just over a quarter million people, Iceland celebrates the anniversary of its independence with a holiday parade featuring costumed marchers. 45 AM Page 51 4 Iceland’s People and Their Way of Life I celanders enjoy one of the world’s highest standards of living and longest life expectancies. As has been mentioned, it is one of the world’s most literate societies, with nearly 100 percent of all adults able to read and write. Surveys suggest that it is also one of the most honest countries, with very little crime or corruption.

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