Skútustaðahreppur district has halted work on a new Fosshotel at Grímsstaðir, just north of lake Mývatn, RÚV reports. No application for a permit was filed with the Environment Agency of Iceland for the construction of the hotel, since contractors deemed that unnecessary.
The construction site is within the sanctuary of lake Mývatn, and, therefore, requires a project permit from Skútustaðahreppur district and from the Environment Agency of Iceland.
The National Planning Agency needs to evaluate whether the project requires an environmental assessment, but the project was never reported to that agency.
Benedikt Ingi Tómasson, a project manager for Beki, who works for the hotel owner, finds it unlikely an assessment is neeeded. He told RÚV that the cost of halting the project could run in the millions of ISK.
Birna Guttormsdóttir, division manager at the Environment Agency, reports that while the project was still at a planning stage, the Environment Agency informed those responsible that the project had to be reported to the Planning Agency and that an application had to be sent to the Environment Agency.