Water Rights Law Protested - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Water Rights Law Protested

Published June 15, 2010

A group of protesters assembled outside of parliament yesterday, dousing the building with water, to demand that parliament strike down a law on water ownership rights that may go into effect at the end of the month.
The assembled crowd, numbering by witness accounts to be between 30 and 50 people, took up buckets of water from the nearby Tjörnin pond and in some cases used water pistols to douse the parliamentary building with water.
The law in question was introduced in 2006 by the then-ruling coalition of the Independence Party and the Progressives. It would give private land owners the right to ownership of the water within the property boundaries. As it is, water is in public ownership.
The law going into effect has been delayed three times since then, but is scheduled to go into effect at the end of the month. Parliament is due to end its spring session for summer vacation any day now, so opponents of the law have been putting the pressure on to have it stricken.
The law is, in fact, diametrically opposed to the platform of the ruling coalition, who want to keep natural resources in public ownership. Current MPs of the Independence Party and the Progressives want to see the law delayed once again.


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