Iceland be Damned

Dettifoss Waterfall in Iceland photographed in 2009 (© Wikimedia)

In the chilly highlands of Iceland, construction is under way. Roads are being made to serve a new hydro-electric power plant, which doesn’t yet exist. If it’s built, this will be about the largest hydropower scheme possible on the island and will almost double the country’s output of electricity. It will feed its energy to a huge, foreign-owned factory which will be built as the sole customer. But environmentalists are contesting the project. They would rather see this area become a National Park, developing the vast wilderness resource for eco-tourism rather than electricity production. Meanwhile, the authorities argue that this project will provide jobs and save the Eastern population of Iceland. They say it will simply take advantage of a valuable national resource and make good profits. But will the project actually make money? And why are the authorities so determined to go ahead? A debate is raging, but time is running out before contracts are signed and the deal is done. In the Documentary ‘Iceland be Dammed’, Laura Durnford investigates.

Produced and presented by Laura Durnford

Euroquest Februar 28, 2003

For more recent information on this debate: ” The Hidden Cost of Iceland’s Green Energy”-