President of Iceland Joins Fourth-graders For Big Day of "Plogging" Skip to content

President of Iceland Joins Fourth-graders For Big Day of “Plogging”

By Gréta Sigríður Einarsdóttir

Photo: President of Iceland. President of Iceland Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, former radio personality Gerður G. Bjarklind, Minister of the Environment and Natural Resources Guðmundur Ingi Guðbrandsson, members of the Nature Club, and City Councillor Líf Magneudóttir..

Last Saturday was the annual Big Day of Plogging. This is the third time Icelanders are encouraged to go jogging while picking up litter in their immediate environment. In Reykjavík, the event was led by the seven young girls of the “Nature Club”, a group of fourth-grade girls who were inspired by Greta Thunberg to spend their Sundays picking up litter.

President of Iceland Guðni Th. Jóhannesson, Minister of the Environment and Natural Resources Guðmundur Ingi Guðbrandsson and City Councillor and Chair of the Committee of Environment and Health Líf Magneudóttir opened the day’s program along with the young girls of the Nature club. In a Facebook post, President Guðni stated that “the future seems bright when you get to know the hard-working members of the youngest generation,” adding that older generations shouldn’t encourage climate anxiety but focus on new solutions and make the effort to make a change.

Plogging is a portmanteau made up of picking up litter while jogging, which has become somewhat of a craze among environmentally-minded citizens. President Guðni is an avid plogger, focusing his clean-up efforts on the area around the Bessastaðir presidential residence. To celebrate the day, Guðni collected food and drink packaging, cigarette stubs and nicotine pouches left by careless litterers, although he noted that the Álftanes area was relatively clean.

While this year’s Big Day of Plogging, much like last year, is impacted by the global pandemic, ploggers all over the country attended the event, with many posting evidence of their efforts in the 7k+ member Facebook group Plokk á Íslandi (plogging in Iceland). Guðni stated: “People cleaned up their environment while at the same time raising awareness of increased sustainability, recycling, and respect for mother nature.”

Read more about efforts to clean up Iceland. 

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