Environmental Campaign Charged With Breaking Environmental Law - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Environmental Campaign Charged With Breaking Environmental Law

Published June 29, 2011

Two artists who painted a polar pear on the Langajökull glacier were charged with breaking an environmental law, but these charges were summarily dismissed.
As many remember, last fall two artists in Iceland took part in an international happening known as 350 Earth, which aimed to raise awareness about climate change on the eve of the UN Climate Change Conference being held in Cancún, Mexico.
However, west Icelandic news siteSkessuhorn reports that the Environment Agency of Iceland pressed charges against the artists for violating Article 42 of the Environmental Protection Law, which states that “making inscriptions” on a natural setting is illegal and can be punished.
Jón Einarsson, representative of the county seat of Borgarnes, dismissed the charges, saying that the language of the law was so vague that “drawing in the sand with a stick could be considered a violation of the law.”
Jón also pointed out that at the time of the painting of the polar bear on the glacier, the official Facebook page of the Environment Agency of Iceland actually congratulated the two artists for their work. As such, the act was officially endorsed by the agency.


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