Today, the protected area around Þjórsárver by Höfsjökull in the south of Iceland will be enlarged from 358 square kilometres to 1.563, according to a source speaking to Fréttablaðið. The increase means that the protected land will be quadrupled in size.
The proposal for the expansion was put forth in the beginning of July, but individuals and municipalities had until October 3 to hand in comments and recommendations.
In 2013, then Environmental Minister Sigurður Ingi Jóhannsson had proposed the move, before retracting it following pressure from Landsvirkjun, The National Power Company of Iceland.
“This is a campaign that has lasted decades, and is way over due,” director of the nature conservation NOG Landvernd Snæbjörn Guðmundsson told Fréttablaðið. “The area is one of Iceland’s crown jewels and it encapsulates everything that is unique to our highlands.”