Category Archives: Green Days

Green Days at the University of Iceland – Explore Environmental Topics

Green Days 2014

Green Days 2014 are over!

We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did!

IMG-20140401-00567We would like to thank all our amazing collaborators this year: The Environment and Natural Resources Interdisciplinary Graduate Programme for the support and help throughout the planning and advertising process and the University of Iceland for a fun photo competition. Special thanks go to the university’s patient technical staff.

We would also like to thank SORPA, the Nordic House, the Red Cross, the Salvation Army, the US embassy, Loft Hostel, Hostelling International–Iceland, the Green Messengers, SEEDS and Green April for their collaboration.

We would like to thank also all our great speakers and moderators this year for making this such a great and fun schedule!

SeedsIn addition the following companies gave us great prizes for our competitions: Rjúkandi Hotel, Heilsuborg, Arctic Adventures, Eldi Wale-watching,, Gló, Eldhestar and Primo Ristorante.

We also want to thank Te & kaffi, Gæðabakstur and Ræstivörur for giving us coffee, kleinur and degradable cups which we provided to our attendants.

And to all of you who participated thank you and we hope to see you again next year! ☺

“My contribution to sustainability and the environment“– Photo contest at the University of Iceland

The University of Iceland has set itself environmental and sustainability goals. The University of Iceland in collaboration with Gaia have organized a photo contest for students and staff at the University of Iceland.
The theme of the contest will be ‘How can I contribute, as an individual, to the development of a sustainable society within the university, my private life or in a wider context?’
1st price: 125.000 ISK gift certificate at the bicycle store Örnin

2nd price:  75.000 ISK gift certificate at the athletic store Markið

3rd price:  50.000 ISK gift certificate at the outdoors equipment store Fjallakofin

magnusornenskuFurthermore, prizes will be given to the best photograph in the category „Sustainability in Cities“, which is the theme of Green Days this year, and to the most popular photo on Facebook. Gaia will announce the prizes in the upcoming weeks, make sure to check the webpage for more updates.
The competition will take place between the 4th and 18th of March and the winners will be announced at the opening ceremony of Green Days on April the 1st.
The winners will be selected based on the content of the photograph i.e. how it reflects sustainability and environmental awareness, as well as its originality and quality from a technical perspective.
The members of the photo contest jury are:
Ólafur Páll Jónsson, chairman of the sustainability and environment committee
Kristinn Ingvarsson, photographer
Louise Emslie, member of the student association Gaia

Green Days 2014

We are proud to announce that the Green Days tradition will continue!



The Gaia board is currently working on the 2014 edition of Green Days which will take place from the 1st to the 5th of April, in order to set up an exciting and interesting schedule.  The theme this year will be “Sustainable Cities”. Different topics will be covered, such as food waste, transportation, urban design and urban farming. On top of that, a bike competition, pub quiz and clothes swap will take place. More updates will be posted on here and on our facebook page!



Furthermore, Gaia is collaborating with the University of Iceland’s newly launched Sustainability webpage on a photo contest with the title “My contribution to sustainability and the environment”. The theme of the contest is ‘How can I contribute, as an individual, to the development of a sustainable society within the university, my private life or in a wider context?’.

The competition will take place from the 4th to the 18th of March and the winners will be announced in the opening ceremony of Green Days on April the 1st. More information can be found at the following link: Photo Contest.


Iceland should be the forerunner of environmentalism in the world

The American architect and designer William McDonough gave a lecture last Tuesday (March 19) at the Green Days in the University of Iceland through remote assistance live from San Francisco.  McDonough, who is truly a star of the sustainability sciences, discussed his Cradle to Cradle concept with students and teachers and his new book the Upcycle. According to his concept, manufacturers and companies should change their industrial processes and choice of materials and eliminate the use of harmful substances in their manufacturing and products. It is therefore possible to manufacture products that have a positive effect on the environment when their lifetime is over instead of producing waste that ends up in landfills.

McDonough discussed also Iceland‘s unique opportunities in the field of environmental issues and environmentally-friendly design. He recommends that Iceland should be the first country to eliminate the use of fossil fuels, due to active research on hydrogen fuels. He urged attendees to be creative in their thinking and emphasized that any future decisions made should be based on careful and well-founded reasoning. McDonough wants Iceland to be a global leader in environmental issues and suggested that Iceland could become the first country in the world to eliminate the use of fossil fuels. He believes that Iceland is in a unique position to do so because of its renewable natural resources, the technological achievements in the world and the fact that Iceland has a small population.  Due to these factors, Iceland has the potential to be a forerunner for those nations that want to change the way they use their natural resources, treat the natural environment and return it to future generations.

In his lecture McDonough also said that he has been coming to Iceland every year for the last 42 years to go fishing. He was 20 years old the first time he came to Iceland and was working at the time as chauffeur for the jazz and swing musician Benny Goodman. Since then he has been coming every year and is a great admirer of Icelandic nature and culture. The lecture was recorded and will be available on the internet in the next few days.

Green days at the University of Iceland will continue throughout the week and they will be finishing with a concert at the Student Bar with the bands Boogie Trouble, 1860 and Kanilsnældur.

Admittance to all the events during Green Days is free and everybody is welcome. The full schedule for Green Days can be found on the webpage of Gaia the student organization for the master‘s programme in Environment and Natural Resources. Gaia is the organizer of Green Days event each year.

Green Days – Photo Competition “Nature’s Design”

The board of the student organization GAIA organized a Photo Competition open for participation to all students at the University of Iceland. The top ten photos will be exhibited at Háskólatorg on Tuesday and the top five winners will be announced on Tuesday, 9:30pm at the Stúdentakjallarinn (Student Bar) during the Green Days Pub Quiz which starts at 9 pm.

The prizes for places 1. – 5. are:

1. Place
Gift certificate for two for Whalewatching, provided by Elding – adventure at sea.
The book Paris Mon Amour from Iða, the bookstore in Lækjargata (All students of HÍ have a 10% discount in Iða)
Slippbarinn: Three course meal, for two.

2. Place
Gift certificate for two for Viðeyjar-ferry, provided by Elding – adventure at sea
Gift certificate at Hornið restaurant, meal for two.

3. Place
Volcano House gift certificate which counts as an entrance to the cinema as well as a coffee drink and a slice of cake for two.
Tapas húsið, meal for two.

4. Place
Volcano House gift certificate: cinema an entrance and coffee drink and a slice of cake for two.
Lobster soup for two in Sægreifinn, restaurant

5. Place
Volcano House gift certificate which counts as an entrance to the cinema as well as a coffee drink and a slice of cake for two persons
Lobster soup for two in Sægreifinn, restaurant.

We would like to thank everybody for their participation and for all the lovely photo entries!

Gaia Team

Green Days 2013 ~ 18th – 22nd of March!

Gaia’s annual event Green Days will start this year on Monday the 18th of March with an Opening Ceremony at Háskólatorg in the University of Iceland. Both the Minister for the Environment and Natural Resources, Svandís Svavarsdóttir and the rector of the University of Iceland, Kristín Ingólfsdóttir, will give short speeches. Also, the Chairman of Gaia, Davíð Fjölnir Ármannsson will also address attendees with a few words.
Dancers from Kramhúsið will perform.

Notable highlights are the remote lecture with Bill McDonough, pub quiz, lectures, exhibitions, clothes swap, movie screenings and a Friday concert!

Full schedule

Monday 18th of March
12:00-12:30 Opening Ceremony @Háskólatorg/HT
12:30-13:10 Lecture: Greening up your travels with Hostelling International @Árnagarður – Room 304
18:00-19:00 Garbagewalk from Háskólatorg to Reykjavík Downtown Hostel
19:30-20:00 Eco-Snacks @Reykjavík Downtown Hostel
20:00-21:00 Movie Screening + Discussions – “Waste = Food” @Reykjavík Downtown Hostel

Tuesday March 19th
10:00-14:00 Booths from Hostelling International and Landvernd @Háskólatorg/HT
11:00-12:30 Seeds Workshop @Háskólatorg/HT
11:00-15:00 Clothes Swap @Háskólatorg/HT
17:00-18:00 Lecture: William McDonough, Cradle to Cradle, @Háskólatorg/HT-105
20:00-21:00 Movie Screenings: Environmental Short Films @Stúdentakjallarinn
21:00-22:30 The Green Days Pubquiz @Stúdentakjallarinn

Wednesday 20th of March
10:00-14:00 Booths from SEEDS and Sorpa @Háskólatorg/HT
11:00-12:30 Seeds Workshop @Háskólatorg/HT
12:30-13:10 Lecture: Eating our way to sustainable food design The Experience of the Ecotrophelia Winners 2012, @Aðalbygging – 207
20:00-21:30 Movie Screening: “Chasing Ice” @Háskólatorg/HT-105.

Thursday 21st of March
11:00-15:00 Clothes Swap @Háskólatorg/HT
12:30-13:10 Lecture, Creating Sustainable Art and Innovation @Gimli -102
20:00-21:30 Movie Screening “Home” @Háskólatorg/HT- 105

Friday 22nd of March
12:30-13:10 Lecture: Creating Sustainable Fashion @Lögberg-103
17:30-19:00 Workshop: Travelling in a sustainable future @LOFT Hostel
21:00-01:00 The Green Days Concert, @Stúdentakjallarinn. Artists Performing:
– Boogie Trouble
– 1860
– Kanilsnældur


Gaia team

Green Days in the News

This year’s Green Days was covered in the Icelandic media.

GAIA’s Green Awards was covered on

Sigurður Eyberg, environmental scientist and former student of the program, kicked off Green Days with a lecture on Iceland’s Ecological Footprint. and covered the issue.



Green Days 2012!

Gaia is happy to announce that the annual tradition continues, as we invite you all to Green Days 2012!

Green Days 2012This year’s Green Days’ theme is ‘responsible consumption’ and our slogan is ‘Made in Earth, Paid with Earth’. This year we present various activities around this topic:

Tuesday 13th March:

12:30-13:10 – Nordic house: Sigurður Eyberg presents his movie and project about Iceland’s ecological footprint, and his fascinating experiment about his own eco-footprint.

Wednesday 14th March:

11:00-15:00 Clothes Swap in Háskólatorg

12:30-13:10 – Askja room no. 129: Elva Rakel Jónsdóttir from the Environmental Agency will give us a lecture on ecolabels.

20:00 – Bíó Paradís – Icelandic première of the documentary ‘Waste Land’ followed by green drinks and an informal discussion.

Thursday 15th March:

11:00-15:00 Clothes Swap in Háskólatorg

12:20-13:10 – Nordic house: Panel discussion – Who controls consumption?
followed by the presentation of Gaia’s ‘Green Awards’.

Friday 16th March:

11:00-15:00 Clothes Swap in Háskólatorg

12:30-13:10 – Askja room no. 131: Dominique Plédel Jónsson will give us a lecture about Slow Food and responsible consumption in the food industry.

19:00 Pub-Quiz and party at Dillon Bar!

Hope to see you all there, don’t hesitate to spread the word and invite your friends to all of our activities!

More at our Facebook site.

Green Days Clothes Swap

Green Days, Gaia’s annual week-long event to raise awareness about environmental issues, is fast approaching.

As part of the event, we’ll be holding a clothes swap in Háskólatorg from Wednesday March 14th to Friday March 16th.

We’re currently taking donations of clothes for the event. Please bring donations to Oddi room 312 Mondays to Fridays from 12-4pm until March 13th.

Photo: Green Days Clothes Swap 2011 by Julia Vol.

Green Days 2011 Round-up

Thanks to everyone who helped make this year’s Green Days a huge success.

Below is a quick round-up of the event.

Clothes Swap

The Green Days clothes swap raised 20.000 ISK which will be donated to the Jabulani self-help centre located in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. The centre serves disadvantaged women and children from the townships surrounding Mariannhill through self-help projects and support.

Photos: GAIA members running the clothes swap stall. (top) Kristín Þóra. (bottom) Hrafnhildur and Olga.


The Green Days lecture series was well attended. Rannveig Magnúsdóttir introduced her documentary, Puffin in Danger, which can be viewed here. Rannveig is currently completing her PhD in biology and completed the documentary as part of her final project at the Icelandic Film School where she graduated earlier. Vestmannaeyjar is the largest puffin habitat in Iceland, but numbers have been declining over recent years. Climate change may be to blame as the species puffin feed on have been disappearing or moving to cooler waters. Rannveig also discussed the ethics of wildlife documentary-making and was highly critical of the work of one of her Danish colleagues. She criticized some of the practices used to get the right shots given harsh time and money constraints.

Photo: Rannveig Magnúsdóttir during the presentation of her film Puffin in Danger.

Sigursteinn Másson, spokesperson for the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) gave a lecture on whaling in Iceland.

Sturla Sighvatsson from Northern Lights Energy (NLE) gave a lecture on NLE’s vision and business model for electrical cars in Iceland. Their plans will come into full force later this year.

Unfortunantly the copy of the Carbon Nation didn‘t arrive on time, and the Age of Stupid was screened in its place.

Photo: The audience during the screening of The Age of Stupid.


A guided tour of the Manna Exhibition at the Nordic House was given. The exhibition illustrated the real environmental cost of our food consumption. This was best portrayed by the 200 bottles of water placed in the centre of the exhibition room. 200 bottles of water is what is required to produce one bottle of beer!

To read more about the exhibition visit the Nordic House online and Manna Exhibition online.

Photos: From the Manna Exhibition.

Music and Pub Quiz

Andvari performed in Háskólatorg on Friday afternoon.

Photo: Andvari performing at the University of Iceland.

Green Days ended with a pub quiz won by Team Estevez. The board’s treasurer, Gunnar, has called for this year’s quiz master, Charlotte, to be barred from taking part in next year’s event after her husband’s team won the competition.

Visit GAIA on Facebook for more photos of the event.