• Harpa
  • Reykjavík
  • Iceland

 

Iceland´s biggest treasure

Highland conference

Icelandic Environment Association and Iceland Nature Conservation Association in association with Pálmi Jónsson Nature Protection Fund will host a conference on the conservation of the central highland of Iceland. The conference will take place in Harpa Conference Center in Reykjavik 26th & 27th of February.

The central highland forms one of the largest area in Europe that has never been cultivated or inhabited. There, one can find vast areas of lava fields, black sand deserts, glaciers, lush wetlands and mountain rigs. 

Over the last few decades the highland has been under siege, threatened by increasing pressure for the construction of power plants,  built-up roads and overhead power lines across the area. These proposed activities would completely ruin the nature and the uniquness of the central highland. 

The conference includes a diverse group of speakers from various backgrounds. They will discuss the treasures of the highland, the importance of conserving the area, as well as an insight will be given into how national parks act as a form of conservation that can benefit the society. 

Conference Schedule:

 

Friday - February 26th

 

13:15-13:25

Moderator: Welcomes guests

Gudrun Petursdottir, Director of Institute for Sustainability Studies, University of Iceland

 

13:25-13:35

Opening Speech

Vigdis Finnbogadottir, former president of Iceland

 

13:35-13:50

The central highland

Tomas Gudbjartsson, prof. & board member of Iceland Touring Association

 

13:50-14:10

The Aesthetic Value of Landscape

Gudbjorg R. Johannesdottir, adjunct, Iceland Academy of the Arts

 

14:10-14:35

Introduction: Highland Projects of the Nature Conservation Fund  

Representative from the fund

 

14:35-14:55

Coffee break

 

15:00-15:15

A place to be: expericencing the highland

Linda Udengård, board member of Utivist Travel Association

 

15:15-15:25

The importance of the wilds

Representative from Icelandic Travel Industry Association

 

15:25-16:10

The Highland: Analog for Planet Mars and Research

Dr. Christopher Hamilton (HiRise-team)

 

16:10-17:10

Refreshments

 

Saturday-February 27th

10:30-10:35

Introduction 

Gudrun Petursdottir

 

10:35-10:55

The highland: Importance of nature education

Hilmar Malmquist, manager of the Icelandic Museum of Natural History

 

10:55-11:25

Natural value of the central highland

Þora Ellen Þorhallsdottir, prof. University of Iceland

 

11:25-11:55

Geological value of the central highland

Magnus T. Gudmundsson, prof. University of Iceland

 

12:00-13:00

Lunch

 

13:00-13:15

National park: A driving force for regional development

NN

 

13:15-13:30

Vatnajokull National Park & tourism

Pall Gudmundur Asgeirsson, Laugarfell Highland Hostel

 

13:30-14:15

Nature conservation as an economic model

Joel Erkkonen, Senior Advicer, Metshallitus Parks & Wildlife, Finland. 

 

14:15-14:45

Discussions/Panel