Is it silly for me to be slightly scared at the potential ramifications of the ash cloud? I'm focusing on where I live, Britain. It's one of the worse affected countries, and there's no sign that anything is about to 'blow over.' The immediate problems are for people stranded abroad, and the direct losses the industry's suffering by being grounded (estimated to near £1bn already). In themselves, these problems are already severe. People will eventually manage to return home, although I worry about the longer term consequences for the airlines and even the economy. Another immediate but less obvious problem is medicine for those who require it abroad, or for those at home with a doctor or surgeon missing. Important people are also absent from schools, orchestras, and more. Looking further into an admittedly pessimistic future I worry that prolonged ash coverage, or even the threat of its return will be subtly crippling for Britain's economy. If there is the chance that transport will be periodically severed, the consequence for foreign investment could be severe. This is important for Britain, but could be shipped abroad given enough reason. E**WTF**jokull is exactly not what the country needs - the slow emergence from recession is already being undermined by the prospect of a hung parliament. But that's another kettle of fish. The best forecasts predict weeks of disorder as planes are relocated and schedules eventually resumed. But this is far from certain. interesting Slate: http://www.slate.com/id/2251247/?from=rss & Guardian: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2010/apr/20/icelandic-volcanic-ash-cloud-editorial  & BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/8630058.stm Can anyone assuage my fears?