Liverargerdi is a small but growing town set amid the highly picturesque volcanic country of the southern lowlands of Iceland, about 29 miles east of Rak Reykjavik, the capital.
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Background: Liverargerdi is a small but growing town set amid the highly picturesque volcanic country of the southern lowlands of Iceland, about 29 miles east of Rak Reykjavik, the capital. It is notable for its profusion of natural hot springs which are found sited in between the houses themselves, as well as on the low hills which surround the town on three sides. The springs are seen as clouds of steam rising from fissures and small pools, some only a few feet from the roadside, or in the back gardens of houses. Some of them erupt every hour or so as gushers of hit water, geysers, one at least of which spouts a jet up to about 70 feet. Tourists-- though there aren't so many of these -- drop soap into the hot springs to make the geyser gush. But geysers are common enough in Iceland, and the special interest of those at Hverargerdi is the practical use that is being made of the hot water. Not only does it provide all the houses and the small hotel and cinema with central heating and a constant hot water supply on tap, but it also serves the extensive glass houses which are used for raising flowers and fruit, including such semi-tropical fruits as bananas and figs in marketable quality and quantity, and even coffee. Connected with this thriving and growing industry is an important training school for horticulture students. Hverargerdi is also an important collection centre for dairy produce in this part of Iceland, and much of the milk drunk in Reykjavik comes from here.
Projects such as this at Hverargerdi are an important part of iceland's attempt to become more independent of imported products in her fight against inflation which is a major issue in the elections being held there on October 25 and 26.