Majority of Dogs in Reykjavík Unregistered

iceland dogs

Animal Services of Reykjavík report of the estimated 10,000 dogs in the city, only 2,500 owners pay the legal registration fee.

In a statement to RÚV, Þorkell Hreiðarsson, director of Animal Services, said: “We lowered the fee by about half two years ago, when Animal Services of Reykjavík City was founded.” Because animal services in Reykjavík are entirely funded by animal registration fees, Þorkell claims the unwillingness to pay is particularly problematic.

In total, Animal Services is funded with some 30 million ISK [$214,000; €200,000]. Services provided include running a kennel for stray dogs and responding to residential noise complaints.

“Ideally, the more people who pay the fees, the more these same fees will decrease,” Þorkell continued.

Registration fees for dogs in Iceland total ISK 15,700 [$112; €105] at the time of writing. Þorkell also believes that many dog owners in Reykjavík may avoid paying their registration fee because the process was once complicated and involved unnecessary paperwork. Now, according to Þorkell, dogs can be registered at the online portal island.is, where Icelandic residents already take care of many bureaucratic tasks. Hopefully, the new convenience will encourage more and more dog owners to pay into the system.

Dog owners in Reykjavík who attend behaviour classes with their animal are also eligible to receive a discount on their registration.

There are, of course, those who simply don’t want to pay. Regarding this unwillingness, Þorkell points out the unfairness of the situation. Because animal services in the city are intended for the entire community, those who pay are, in effect, subsidising the unwilling.

New Centre for Icelandic Studies to Acquire Manuscripts on Long-Term Loan

icelandic manuscript heimskringla

The Danish government has agreed to the Árni Magnússon Institute for Icelandic Studies’ request to loan Icelandic manuscripts on a long-term basis. RÚV reports.

The manuscripts in question would be displayed at the new centre for Icelandic manuscript studies, which has yet to be named. Originally financed in 2005, the new centre recently ended its open call for naming suggestions and is expected to open this April.

Read more: Danish Professor Reluctant to Repatriate Manuscripts

A committee will review the suggested name and select the best, to be revealed at the building’s upcoming opening.

However, not all are in support of relocating the manuscripts. Danish academics have resisted possible repatriation, stating the manuscripts are a part of Danish cultural heritage as well.

Some Icelandic academics have likewise cast doubt on the utility of bringing certain manuscripts back to Iceland. In 2019, professor Viðar Pálsson at the University of Iceland stated: “From a purely academic point of view, if the manuscripts go home to Iceland, I do not know in what way, if any, it would strengthen scholarship there.”

Highlighting the potential dangers of transporting historical manuscripts, he further stated: “In the past centuries, people defined what manuscripts were considered Icelandic. Many of the manuscripts would fall into a grey area, but virtually all manuscripts that we can say are mainly Icelandic have been brought back. But there are also some manuscripts that we could describe as rather Icelandic than anything else that we may nevertheless want to recover at some point. Of course, there are manuscripts in the Danish archives containing prized Icelandic sagas, but then there were manuscripts containing more prosaic legal material, royal narrative material and so on that originate in Iceland but are not necessarily Icelandic in content.”

Despite such objections, Minister of Culture and Trade Lilja Alfreðsdóttir has been eager to acquire the manuscripts on behalf of the Árni Magnússon Institute for Icelandic Studies.

The manuscripts in question would be displayed with the latest technologies at the new centre. Estimates state that the long-term loan will cost some 250 million ISK [$1.8 million; €1.7 million].

According to RÚV, the loan request is currently being processed by the Arnamagnæan Institute in Copenhagen. A response is expected promptly.

 

 

New Fees at Jökulsárlón Could Generate Up To ISK 40 Million

jökulsárlón parking fee

Park rangers for Vatnajökull have stated that the necessary infrastructure will soon be in place to introduce fees at Jökulsárlón, one of Iceland’s most popular tourist destinations.

The new fees would be introduced this June, and could potentially generate some ISK 40 million [$285,000; €266,000].

Read More: 72% of Icelanders Support Tourism Fee

According to rangers for South Iceland, new cameras will be set up in April of this year and will be tested for two months, before becoming fully operational this June.

Future visitors to Jökulsárlón in private passenger vehicles can expect to pay ISK 1,000 [$7.10; €6,70] for parking, though visitors who also visit Skaftafell will receive a 50% discount. Camping fees will not be included in this amount.

The introduction of a parking fee at Jökulsárlón has been discussed as a possibility for some time. Initial proposals first came in 2017, when the Icelandic state acquired all of the land surrounding the popular glacial lagoon. According to RÚV, nearly 1 million tourists visit the area annually. This volume of visitors means that the area is expensive to maintain.

In Focus: Privately Owned Tourist Sites

Although by Icelandic law, all land is open to the public, increasing numbers of visitors to Iceland have raised concerns in recent years about the sustainability of the tourism industry. Notably, these laws, known traditionally in English as “the right to wander,” do not cover services, such as parking and bathrooms.

 

Blackport Garners Recognition at 2023 Edda Awards

verbúðin iceland television

The Edda Awards, the annual awards for Icelandic film and television, were held last night, March 19.

By far the most decorated production of the evening was Verbúðin (English title: Blackport), a historical drama about the fishing quota system in Iceland. Nominated in 16 categories, Blackport took home 9 awards.

Winners in their categories are highlighted in bold.

Film of the Year

  • Svar við bréfi Helgu (A Letter from Helga)
  • Sumarljós og svo kemur nóttin (Summer Light, and then Comes the Night)
  • Against the Ice
  • Berdreymi (Beautiful Beings)
  • Volaða Land (Godland)

Documentary of the Year

  • Velkominn Árni (Welcome, Árni)
  • Út úr myrkrinu (Out of the Dark)
  • Sundlaugasögur (Swimming Pool Stories)

Television Series of the Year

  • Trom
  • Svörtu sandar (Black Sand)
  • Randalín og Mundi: Dagar í desember (Randalín and Mundi: Days in December)
  • Brúðkaupið mitt (My Wedding)
  • Verbúðin (Blackport)

Director of the Year

  • Heimir Bjarnason (Þrot)
  • Ása Helga Hjörleifsdóttir (Svar við bréfi Helgu)
  • Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson (Berdreymi)
  • Hlynur Pálmason (Volaða Land)
  • Björn Hlynur Haraldsson, Gísli Örn Garðarsson & María Reyndal (Verbúðin)

See the full list of Edda Awards nominees here.

The Edda Prize was first awarded in 1999 for excellence in Icelandic film and television and is awarded annually. This year’s award ceremony was noteworthy as the final Edda Awards for both film and television. Future award ceremonies will split the two. In total, some 165 works were submitted for consideration this year. Of these, 117 were television productions, 10 were films, 9 were documentaries, and 22 were children- and youth media.

Read our profile of Verbúðin here.