The Icelandic conundrum

If good countries like Iceland can go bad, the lesson may be to control the irrationality of the markets by heavy regulation

28th March, 2009

Greenhouses ripening bananas are one thing you don’t expect to see dotted about the freezing Icelandic plains where the glaciers sweep down to the volcanic plateau. The greenhouses, which shelter the hardy Icelandic ponies from the bitter east wind, are powered by geothermal heat, which bubbles away under the lava.

This is, after all, a volcanic island and, as a result, energy is practically free. The Icelanders figure it is cheaper to grow...

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