The Iceland volcano with the easy to remember name, Eyjafjallajökull, is still spewing ash into the atmosphere. It has paralyzed European air travel; many airlines are losing 10's of millions of dollars daily. There are now some strong indicators that the cloud will find its way into US and Canadian air space.
The danger is that the highly abrasive ash wrecks havoc on jet engines, to the point of causing failure of the engines and a quick stop against the ground for the airplane – less than optimum flight conditions.
Personally, shutting down air traffic doesn't bother me to much as I don't fly (except in very special circumstances). What does bother me is, will the US airline corporations, who always seem to be on the edge of financial catastrophe, use the ash cloud to clean more largess from the public coffers – I can't imagine they would miss such an golden opportunity.
The US taxpayer has become the insurance company for American business, insurance against bad investments, bad management, bad financial instruments, crooked dealings and the normal vicissitudes of doing business. The “to big to fail” ploy is bullshit – this is, allegedly, a capitalism system and the price of failure is bankruptcy.
I'm sick of corporate malfeasance and the expectation that we owe it to them to pull their asses out of the fire. They are incompetent or criminal so fuck them, let them stew in their own noxious juices. If they fail there will always be someone to fill the vacuum, again, the nature of capitalism.
...I guess I'm ranting now.