Minister for Environment concerned about United Silicon situation
Minister for the Environment, Björt Ólafsdóttir calls the situation in Reykjanes due to the United Silicon silicon plant pollution "a grave situation."
"People are being deprived of their freedom as they have to shut doors, windows and are afraid to send their children outside to breathe air that they themselves sense to be of danger to their health and wellbeing," Ólafsdóttir writes in a statement on her Facebook page. "I have conveyed the message that I will be making no concessions with regards to pollution standards or public health standards or actions to keep those standards."
She says that in the last 24 hours many people have contacted her to do something about the situation in Reykjanes in connection to the United Silicon plant. "People naturally want answers." She adds that she has demanded information from the Iceland Environmental Agency and is waiting for an answer. "It's clear however that if the furnace at US goes under a certain temperature the Environmental Agency will stop production, as they conveyed in their letter to US last week."
United Silicon have until today to reply to the Environmental Agency's letter. The agency has previously stated that no action will be taken until the date of the deadline, which is today.
The furnace was turned off on Saturday following a fire but pollution can still eminate from it after it has been turned off. Locals have complained of a very bad smell coming from the plant in the last couple of days.