Norway hosts ‘Seed Vault Summit’

It’s been 10 years since Norway opened the global seed vault on Svalbard. Agriculture Minister Jon Georg Dale has invited seed depositors and partners from around the world to a “Seed Vault Summit” on Svalbard this weekend, to celebrate the anniversary. Dale, along with Crop Trust and NordGen, will mark the occasion with panel discussions, […]

Northern Norway’s ‘biggest move ever’

The northern Norwegian city of Bodø has approved ambitious plans to literally move its airport just 900 meters, thereby opening up valuable new waterfront land for redevelopment. If also approved by Parliament, it will be the biggest land-based construction project ever undertaken in Northern Norway, and further boost a city that’s already blossoming. Bodø’s City […]

Sami celebrations marred by decline

Norway’s indigenous people, the Sami, celebrated their national day this month amidst reports that their population may again be threatened by decline. State statistics bureau SSB revealed data showing little if any growth in traditionally Sami areas, and risks that population levels will sink. “What’s of most concern is that a large portion of the […]

Climate concerns prompt an appeal

Environmental organizations Greenpeace and Natur og Ungdom  aren’t accepting defeat in an Oslo city court, announcing on Monday that they will appeal for a halt to Arctic oil drilling directly to Norway’s highest court. They continue to claim that expanded oil activity in the Arctic violates Norwegian constitutional guarantees to protect nature and the environment […]

Foreign minister still keen on the Arctic

The annual Arctic Frontiers conference, billed as one of the most important gatherings to discuss Arctic development, opened in Norway’s northern city of Tromsø this week. Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide was among those opening the conference before flying off to Ethiopia after a hectic spate of travel. Norway’s conservative government coalition has firmly denied […]

Environmentalists lost against state

It was dubbed as “The People vs Arctic Oil,” and the people lost. Environmental organizations that sued the Norwegian government for opening up its Arctic territory to more oil and gas activity announced they’d been defeated in court on Thursday, but still think their battle to protect sensitive Arctic areas has been worth it. “We […]

Svalbard residents evacuated again

Extreme weather bearing down on Svalbard this week forced the evacuations Tuesday of around 180 residents on the Arctic island of Spitsbergen. Strong winds and even rain were threatening to set off more avalanches on the steep slope behind their homes. The evacuation order came on the second anniversary of an avalanche in the same […]

Repairs ordered for seed vault entrance

Climate change has been creating challenges for the area leading into the world’s so-called “doomsday vault” for seed storage on Svalbard. Now the Norwegian agency in charge of state property and maintenance plans to renovate the vault’s entrance, after warmer temperatures have weakened the permafrost around it. State and local officials on Svalbard, the Arctic […]

‘Crazy,’ but the oil will keep gushing

NEWS ANALYSIS: It’s been less than two weeks since a major lawsuit popularly called “The People vs Arctic Oil” drew to a close in Oslo. Statoil didn’t wait for a verdict to move forward on Tuesday with more Arctic oil development that environmentalists promptly called “crazy.” As Norway’s oil minister also moved to open new […]

Statoil cuts back on new oil project

There was no lack of hyperbole when Statoil presented its latest development plan for the long-delayed Johan Castberg oil field off Northern Norway on Tuesday. Statoil has resorted to extreme cost-cutting to make it profitable, however, and North Cape communities hoping for economic development from the Castberg project may wind up disappointed. “This is a […]