Iceland Mag

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Iceland Mag

Nature

See the breathtaking hidden waterfalls of the remote Strandir region in beautiful video

By Staff

  • Sacrificed for renewable energy? One of the many waterfalls which will disappear if plans to build a hydropower plant in Hvalá river are realized. Photo/Screenshot from video, see below

One of the most remote parts of Iceland is the Strandir region on the northern coast of the Westfjords peninsula. Due to its extreme remoteness the area has experienced a significant population decline for several decades. Now only a few dozen farmers and fishermen live in the region which includes two tiny villages, Djúpavík and Norðfjörður.

Some locals have therefore welcomed plans to build a power plant in Ófeigsfjörður fjord, hoping that the construction will bring some much needed jobs to the area and improved roads. Others, however, oppose these plans, arguing that the rivers and landscapes have far more value untouched. The conservationists argue that a new Natural Preserve or a National Park would bring far more and better paying jobs than a small power plant. 

Read more: Conservationists reject plans for hydropower plants in untouched Westfjords wilderness

The issue became the focal point of recent municipal elections in the region, with those in favor of the power plant accusing conservationists of election fraud. A couple of dozen environmentalists had moved their legal address to the only village in the region to tilt the balance of the election. The registrations were reversed, but decision on legal prosecution of election fraud is still pending. Those in favor of the hydropower project emerged victorious from the election.

Read more: Election fraud in Westfjords? Suspicious population increase in lead-up to local elections

Two environmental activists Tómas Guðbjartsson and Ólafur Már Björnsson have created a video to show the many spectacular waterfalls which would be affected by the plan to build a hydropower plant and a series of dams in Hvalá river. The video, which is called the "Golden Waterfalls of Strandir" was premiered at a Sigurrós concert on Friday.

Tómas and Ólafur hope that the video will raise awareness about the plans and create pressure to harness the natural beauty of the region to generate jobs through tourism, rather than renewable energy. 

Gullfossar Stranda - The Golden Waterfalls of Strandir - english subtitles -4K from Olafur Mar Bjornsson on Vimeo.

 

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