Archive for February, 2007

Feb 24 2007

Majority of Icelanders are Against the Expansion of the ALCAN Smelter and Favour More Environmental Protection


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According to a survey made by the newspaper Frettabladid over 63% of Icelanders are against the expansion of the ALCAN smelter in Hafnarfjördur. Under 36% support the expansion. The people of Hafnarfjördur will vote on the expansion in a referendum 31 March. ALCAN have gone into overdrive campaigning with threats, bribes and lies. The outcome may very well be indicative of how the nation will vote in the coming general election on 12 May. If the people of Hafnarfjördur vote against ALCAN it will likely be the first death blow to the heavy industry policy of the Icelandic power mafia.

According to a new Gallup Capacent poll, conducted for the Iceland Nature Conservation Association (INCA), 72.8% of Icelanders believe that political parties should place more focus on environmental protection.

When asked if political parties should give more attention to environmental protection, 37,2% answered that the parties should give a lot more attention to environmental protection, while 35,6% answered that the parties should give more attention to the topic.

22,6% Answered that they believed that environmental protection was receiving adequate attention, while 4,6% believed that environmental protection was receiving too much attention.

There was a noticeable difference in opinion between the sexes, with around 78% of women in favour of more environmental protection, with 67% of men answering the same way. Of 1350 people polled, 800 answered.

Feb 21 2007

Press Release Regarding the RUV News About the ELF Action in Hafnarfjördur


Saving Iceland has been alerted to a report broadcast today 21 February by RUV, the Icelandic National Broadcast Service. The report is about an act of sabotage in Hafnarfjordur claimed by the Earth Liberation Front.

We understand that the report has already been transmitted in various versions on RUV radio. In the 8 o’clock news it is stated directly that the ELF are responsible for the website www.savingiceland.org. Quoting RUV: “… The group [ELF] maintain a website devoted to the struggle against heavy industry in Iceland.”

Anyone who has done the slightest amount of research would find that the ELF maintain their own website www.earthliberationfront.com. As far as we are aware the ELF are US based and have never before been concerned with environmental issues in Iceland. Clearly RUV did not bother to find out about this until just before the 12.20pm news. But this did not prompt the RUV news department to correct their earlier inaccuracies regarding the Saving Iceland website. Read More

Feb 19 2007

Mad as Hell – Interview with Andri Snær Magnason


Iceland Review
02/19/2007

andri snaer 

Icelandic author Andri Snaer Magnason was recently awarded for his book Draumalandid (“Dreamland”), which harshly criticizes the government’s policy on heavy industry. Read IR’s Ed Weinman’s interview with Magnason on why he is so angry about this policy and why he decided to write a book about it. Read More

Feb 04 2007

Smokestacks in a White Wilderness Divide Iceland – New York Times


NY Times puts the spotlight on Kárahnjúkar
Alcoa is building an aluminum smelter in eastern Iceland, part of a project that is reshaping the wilderness. But a coalition of groups says Iceland is sacrificing its most precious asset — its pristine land — to foreign industry.

 

The New York Times

By SARAH LYALL

NORTH OF VATNAJOKULL GLACIER, Iceland — In the depths of winter there is almost nothing to see here but snow and rock: snow across the uneven, unearthly landscape, snow on the mist-shrouded mountains, snow stretching to what looks like the edge of the world.

But tucked into Iceland’s central highlands, where the Karahnjukar mountain meets two powerful rivers flowing north from Europe’s largest glacier, a nearly completed jigsaw of dams, tunnels and reservoirs has begun to reshape the wilderness.

This is the $3 billion Karahnjukar Hydropower Project, a sprawling enterprise to harness the rivers for electricity that will be used for a single purpose: to fuel a new aluminum smelter owned by Alcoa, the world’s largest aluminum company. It has been the focus of the angriest and most divisive battle in recent Icelandic history. Read More

Feb 01 2007

Alcoa joins Hydro in Greenland smelter talks


2/1/2007

Greenland rashly joins Iceland as the Final European Frontier for the aluminium industry.

Whilst we reported previously that Norsk Hydro were in talks to build a 300,000 MTPY hydroelectric powered aluminium smelter in Greenland, it actually seems that there is a highly nauseating competition taking place between Hydro and Alcoa to win this smelter contract. Or is Greenland Home Rule reckless enough to build two smelters in one of the planets most fragile ecosystems?

One is led to wonder if it is not the neo-colonial situation shared by the two small and easily manipulated nations that appeals to the powerful aluminium barons, just as in Trinidad and Tobago…

We urgently invite any individuals or groups enraged by this project to contact us,  Read More