Judging by the outlook of the situation in Greenland, the proposed aluminium smelter in Maniitsoq is, fi rst and foremost, a factory in need of cheap energy and a reliable labour force in a stable political environment. Water of a certain quality and quantity is required to produce hydroelectric power and it has been possible to locate water resources that comply with these needs. Apart from the water needed in connection with energy production, Greenland can offer ice-free harbour facilities and freshwater in large quantities for production. Thus, by controlling and using water in a very specifi c and goal-oriented way, it becomes possible to evoke a site that is fi t for the smelter. These different water potentials merge in Maniitsoq and the place becomes interesting and competitive for global industrial companies that are on the lookout for new cost-effective sites of production. Indeed, the melting local glaciers, the melting Greenlandic ice sheet and the melting sea ice improve the water potentials of Greenland for mega-industries. Greenland is now beginning to organize water in certain purposeful ways and also starting to reorganize the society itself in order to realize what is considered (by some people, in any event) the best outcome for the national economy. This involves a process of social engineering where people have to move to productive centres and have to rethink their understanding of the good life. Because the water-dependent aluminium smelter is the largest development project in Greenland, one that will make a signifi cant impact – or even a ‘dramatic’ impact, in the words of one report ( Bennetzen & Lonka, 2008 , p. 46) – on many parts of Greenland, with irreversible consequences, it is safe to say that Greenland is undergoing a process of creative reformation. This is a reformation where new kinds of balances between regions and social groups as well as among new dynamics and dependencies will emerge.