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Gállok/Kallak Iron Mine, Sweden

In 2006, the company Beowulf Mining was given permission by the Swedish agency Bergsstaten to explore possibilities for mining iron ore in Gállok (also known as Kallak). Stiil by 2020, opposition prevents the start of the project.


In 2006, a British company named Beowulf Mining Plc. and their Swedish affiliate, Jokkmokk Iron Mines AB, were given permission by the Swedish governmental agency Bergsstaten to explore possibilities for mining iron ore in Gállok (also known as Kallak); an area located 40 km northwest of Jokkmokk in the province of Lappland, Sweden.

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Basic Data
Name of conflict:Gállok/Kallak Iron Mine, Sweden
State or province:Norrbotten
Location of conflict:Jokkmokk
Accuracy of locationHIGH (Local level)
Source of Conflict
Type of conflict. 1st level:Mineral Ores and Building Materials Extraction
Type of conflict. 2nd level:Mineral ore exploration
Tailings from mines
Mineral processing
Specific commodities:Iron ore
Project Details and Actors
Project details

Exploration of the area has shown findings of 25-45% iron in the ore and an estimation is that the deposit contains at least 600 million tonnes of iron that could be extracted over 60 years. For every 10 million tonnes of iron (which is an annual estimate for the first 15 years), 150 million tonnes of aggregate would be extracted. There is a fanger that the mine tailings would be dumped in hydropower dams.

Project area:2.25
Type of populationRural
Start of the conflict:2006
Company names or state enterprises:Beowulf Mining Plc. from United Kingdom
Jokkmokk Iron Mines AB from Sweden
Relevant government actors:Bergsstaten
Environmental justice organizations (and other supporters) and their websites, if available:What local people (, Urbergsgruppen Jokkmokk (, Fältbiologerna (, Rätten för Urfolk Samerna (RUSA), Jordens vänner (Swedish affiliate of Friends of the Earth,, Naturskyddsföreningen Jokkmokk (
Conflict & Mobilization
IntensityHIGH (widespread, mass mobilization, violence, arrests, etc...)
Reaction stagePREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups mobilizing:Farmers
Indigenous groups or traditional communities
Industrial workers
Local ejos
Social movements
Trade unions
Forms of mobilization:Artistic and creative actions (eg guerilla theatre, murals)
Boycotts of official procedures/non-participation in official processes
Creation of alternative reports/knowledge
Development of a network/collective action
Involvement of national and international NGOs
Lawsuits, court cases, judicial activism
Media based activism/alternative media
Objections to the EIA
Referendum other local consultations
Street protest/marches
Property damage/arson
Arguments for the rights of mother nature
Appeals/recourse to economic valuation of the environment
Boycotts of companies-products
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Air pollution, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Soil contamination, Soil erosion, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion, Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems, Mine tailing spills
Health ImpactsPotential: Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…)
Socio-economical ImpactsPotential: Displacement, Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment, Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Violations of human rights, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place
Project StatusProposed (exploration phase)
Conflict outcome / response:Moratoria
Do you consider this an environmental justice success? Was environmental justice served?:Not Sure
Briefly explain:Beowulf Mining Plc. with affiliate Jokkmokk Iron Mines AB are still exploring and conducting tests at the site; i.e. proceeding with the plans to start mining for iron ore in the area despite massive continuing protests and knowledge of the impact it will have on indigenous and local people and the risks for the environment. However, by 2020 the Swedish government has not yet given permission to proceed.
Sources & Materials
Juridical relevant texts related to the conflict (laws, legislations, EIAs, etc)

Reindeer herding law (1971:437)
[click to view]

ILO Convention no. 169, 1989 (Sweden has not ratified the convention)
[click to view]

Sverige skänker bort tillgångar i Sameland, Dagens Nyheter, , in Swedish
[click to view]

Nya protester när malmen fraktades iväg, Dagens Nyheter, , in Swedish
[click to view]

Gruvprotester i Kallak fortsätter, Svenska Dagbladet, , in Swedish
[click to view]

Protesterna mot gruvan har bara börjat, Dagens Nyhter, , in Swedish
[click to view]

Aktivisterna: Vi ska stoppa hela gruvboomen!, Svenska Dagbladet, , in Swedish
[click to view]

Kallak: Aktivist har hällt bensin på sig och hotat tända eld, Sveriges Radio, , in Swedish
[click to view]

Kampanda i Kallak, Sveriges Radio, , in Swedish
[click to view]

What local people
[click to view]

Related media links to videos, campaigns, social network

[click to view]

A collection of 23 photos from a demonstration of 500 people against the mining project
[click to view]

Demonstration, Jokkmokk Market 2012
[click to view]

Music written by local artists about the project:
[click to view]

Meta information
Contributor:Linda Dubec
Last update06/02/2020
Conflict ID:404
Legal notice / Aviso legal
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