Greenland: huge mining project voted out
The left-wing socialist Inuit Ataqatigiit (IA) party has emerged as the strongest party in Greenland's parliamentary elections. It will now replace the social democratic Siumut party, which has been in power in all legislative periods but one since the parliament in Nuuk was first established. IA's opposition to a huge mining project supported by Siumut was a key factor in securing voter support. Commentators see this as a positive sign.
A victory for environmental protection
The Greenlanders have made a good decision, says Reinhard Wolff, the taz's Scandinavia correspondent:
“In the parliamentary elections they voted against allowing parts of their country to be destroyed by a mining corporation and Chinese economic interests. ... Greenland's hitherto leading political force let itself be blinded by the prospect of tax revenues and jobs. In exchange for a shortcut to independence, the social democrats were even willing to accept the toxic dangers of uranium mining - but fortunately the overwhelming majority of Greenlanders cared more about protecting their country's unique nature.”
A historic and future-oriented vote
Politiken also welcomes the outcome:
“The election result is historic; some would even say revolutionary, because it breaks Siumut's long-standing dominance in Greenland's politics. And it is sustainable, because it slows down the hunt for 'quick money' from the gigantic Narsaq [rare earths] mining project. This project could lead to an unacceptable dependence on China, enormous environmental damage and unmanageable problems with the associated uranium mining for Greenland. The IA party has been sensible in not rejecting other mining projects. Its victory gives Greenland hope for a more sustainable future - including in fishing and tourism.”