Hafnarfjördur Wants New Referendum on Smelter Skip to content

Hafnarfjördur Wants New Referendum on Smelter

By Iceland Review

A petition signed by roughly 5,000 Hafnarfjördur inhabitants calling for a new referendum on the enlargement of the aluminum smelter, which is located within town limits in Straumsvík, was submitted to Mayor of Hafnarfjördur Lúdvík Geirsson yesterday.

The smelter in Straumsvík. Copyright: Icelandic Photo Agency.

The number of signatures is sufficient to comply with demands for a new referendum, but Geirsson told Fréttabladid that he wants to discuss the matter with representatives of Rio Tinto Alcan, which operate the Straumsvík smelter, first.

Ólafur Teitur Gudnason, information officer at Alcan in Iceland, said the company has changed its policy after Hafnarfjördur inhabitants rejected its enlargement plans for the Straumsvík smelter last year and that their intent needs to be clear before Alcan reconsiders the original enlargement plans.

Gudnason said the company does not want to end up in a dead end as after the referendum last year. “The company wants it to be clear what townspeople want before beginning the entire process [of enlargement].”

Click here to read more about Hafnarfjördur rejecting the smelter enlargement last year.

Sign up for our weekly newsletter

Get news from Iceland, photos, and in-depth stories delivered to your inbox every week!

* indicates required

Subscribe to Iceland Review

In-depth stories and high-quality photography showcasing life in Iceland!