'Pollution' Tag Archive

Jan 11 2008

Alcoa Divides and Rules Greenland


11 January 2008

Saving Iceland received this urgent call for help from Greenland. The sentiments here seem quite contrary to those of Alcoa’s deluded CEO, Alain Belda, who intends to bring an “environmentally-friendly smelter [to Greenland] that adheres to our stringent values and delivers sustainable development”* or Alcoa’s Mr Wade “Kárahnjúkar-is-not-in-the-Highlands” Hughes who stated that Alcoa “have been well accepted by the people [in Greenland].”** In Iceland we are well aware of the collusion between mega-corporations like Alcoa and the corporate media, in manufacturing consent for their projects rather than stimulating thoughtful debate. As Alcoa plan a smelter in Greenland which will start off slightly larger than their Fjardaál monster in Iceland, there is no time to lose, Greenland must be defended.
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The Aluminium project in Greenland involves a smelter to be placed most possibly in Maalutu on the western shore of Nuuk Fiord plus 3 hydropower projects one in the bottom of Nuuk fiord, one in the bottom of Majoqqaq in the bottom of S�ndre Isortoq and one in the river running from Tasersiaq most possible by damming Sarfartup Kuua, producing ~600 MW. Plus >100km of wires crossing some of the most precious caribou hunting grounds. The aim is to produce ~350.000 tonnes of Aluminium per year and create ~700 permanent jobs. Read More

Dec 25 2007
1 Comment

‘The Age of Aluminum’ by Mimi Sheller


Atilla Lerato Sheller

Activists Attilah Springer (left) and Lerato Maria
Maregele (center). SI conference July ’07.

Mimi Sheller is a visiting associate professor in the sociology and anthropology department at Swarthmore College. She attended the Saving Iceland conference in 2007.

I grew up in an aluminum-sided suburban house. I carried a colorful aluminum lunchbox to school, with a sandwich wrapped in aluminum foil. Like everyone I know, I drink from aluminum cans, travel in cars, planes, and bikes full of aluminum parts, and cook in aluminum pots and pans. This versatile, ubiquitous material is all around us, all the time, but seems almost invisible because it has become, literally, part of the furniture (even the kitchen sink). The surprising story of this mercurial metallic fabric of everyday life – in our homes, skyscrapers, cars, airplanes, utensils, fasteners, cosmetics, space ships, and bombs – encapsulates the making of global modernity, the creation of multinational corporations, the rise of the U.S. as a world power, the modernization of warfare, and the invention of suburbia, science-fiction futurism, and the American Dream.
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Dec 16 2007

Icelandic Santas Cause Mischief in Hengill


santacrUpdate: check out the new ‘Potatoes for Heavy Industry’ film on YouTube. [In Icelandic and English]

On Saturday nine ‘jólasveinar’ wandered into the Hellisheiði Powerplant by Mount Hengill, expressing their opposition to the rise of heavy industry and other nature devastating activities in Iceland, as well as solidarity with human nature conservationists. (The jolasveinar are 13 Icelandic santas, born of a child-eating troll mother, who descend from the mountains in the days before christmas to sneak through the houses, stealing, teasing and causing mischief.) Read More

Nov 27 2007

Will Iceland Get Another Exemption Under the Kyoto?


Iceland Review
11/27/2007

Minister of the Environment Thórunn Sveinbjarnardóttir says that every nation needs to be responsible after the Kyoto Protocol expires in 2012 and that special needs will not be relevant.

According to her, Iceland should not apply for further exemptions.

Post-Kyoto negotiations will take place at the 2007 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Bali, Indonesia, between December 3 and 14.

When the Kyoto Protocol was agreed upon, Iceland was given a special exemption to increase greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by ten percent while most other nations were obligated to reduce their average emissions by 5.2 percent, Morgunbladid reports. Read More

Nov 22 2007

Iceland’s Special Kyoto Deal Still Not Enough for Industrial Plans


7/11/2007

Prime minister Geir H. Harde has revealed his opinion that Iceland should negotiate for another special deal on carbon emmissions in the upcoming 2012 Kyoto agreement renewal. Read More

Nov 19 2007

Climate Change-Iceland: Emissions Quota Debate Heats Up


By Lowana Veal, Inter Press Service, 19 November 2007

“I am of the opinion that Iceland should not ask for a repeat of the Iceland Provision in the upcoming climate change negotiations,” says Iceland’s environment minister Thorunn Sveinbjarnardottir.
The Iceland Provision was the exemption given to Iceland when the Kyoto Protocol went into effect in 2005. Because Iceland derives 72 percent of its energy needs from renewable energy and had little heavy industry at the time the Protocol was agreed, the country was allowed to increase its greenhouse gas emissions by 10 percent from their 1990 level, rather than decrease emissions by at least 5 percent like most of the other signatories are required to do.
During the first commitment period, 2008-2112, the Iceland Provision allows for emissions averaging 1.6 million tonnes annually of carbon dioxide from energy-intensive industries that had not existed prior to 1990.
Read More

Nov 08 2007
1 Comment

Bitru and Hverahlíðar Power Plants Break Records in Negative Feedback


Hengill8

Geothermal waterfall at Klambragil in Reykjadal, Hengill area

Saving Iceland
8 November 2007

A new national record in criticizing a power plant has been set.

Following negative reports from environmental engineers, objections to the Bitru and Hverahlíð geothermal power plant expansion have grown to over 678. Residents, scientists and town authorities are concerned with how close the power plant is planned to be to the town of Hveragerði. They are also afraid that it will harm future tourism, and obstruct land for outdoor activities. Read More

Nov 08 2007
1 Comment

Hálslón Tunnel Leakages Poisoning Highlands


Tunnel Halslon

photo by Tom Olliver

Saving Iceland
7 November 2007

Only two days after the glorious inauguration of the turbines at Kárahnjúkar dam, further structural problems are already emerging.

Icelandic paper Morgunbladid revealed today that severe leakages in the tunnels leading to the turbines are releasing 200 litres of water per second onto the ground surface, forming a swamp currently about a third of a hectare in size. When asked to comment on the situation, Kárahnjúkarvirkjun spokesperson Sigurdur Arnalds said the water loss was of no consequence.

Regardless of whether or not we should believe Arnalds, the revelation that tunnel water is reaching the ground water breaches one of Siv Fridleifsdottir’s [ex-Minister of Environment who pushed through the project] fundamental stipulations (no. 14):
That Kárahnjúkarvirkjun should NOT interfere with ground water levels. Read More

Oct 22 2007
2 Comments

Imminent Man-Made Volcanic Eruption Courtesy of ALCOA and Icelandic Government


Upptyppingar

Upptyppingar

Today at the annual general meeting of the Icelandic Glaciological Society the geophysicist Páll Einarsson confirmed that a volcanic eruption is imminent in one or two years time in Upptyppingar near Askja. He said this was a direct result of the inundation of Kárahnjúkar. He also claimed that the earthquakes that had started in February, ceased temporarily when the inundation was halted, but as soon as it was continued the tremors began again. The water in Halslon weighs two billion tons now and over 4000 earthquakes have been recorded since February.
Einarsson added that it was a mystery why the effects of the inundation were felt 20 kilometers away from Karahnjukar, instead of in the immediate vicinity of the dams.

Read More

Oct 08 2007

Behind the Shining: Aluminum’s Dark Side


An IPS/SEEN/TNI report, 2001

This important and lengthy report from the Washington based Sustainable Energy and Economy Network is highly informative about the operational structure of the aluminum industry and the resulting impacts on human rights and the environment.

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