Disney puts the spotlight on Svalbard

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The nature film unit of entertainment giant Disney is preparing a new documentary on how climate change is affecting the Norwegian-administered Arctic archipelago of Svalbard. Part of the filming process, however, doesn’t seem particularly climate-friendly.

Melting ice around Svalbard in May. PHOTO: newsinenglish.no/Morten Møst

Norwegian media has noted that Disney applied for, and received, permission for no less than 20 helicopter landings on various glaciers around Svalbard. They include Kvalbreen and Negribreen, while Kongsvegen can be used to transport personnel, according to news bureau NTB. Filming is due to take place in March and then later in May, when there will be daylight around the clock.

Svalbard’s Norwegian governor (Sysselmannen på Svalbard) granted permission for all the helicopter use on the grounds that animals and birds won’t be disturbed, and that the nature won’t be left with lasting traces of Disney’s activity.

Local newspaper Svalbardposten reported that PolarX of Longyearbyen, a firm billing itself as a leader in handling logistics for various projects in polar regions, will assist Disney. It claims the new film will have “massive potential” for reaching an international audience. The goal is to document the challenges of climate change.

newsinenglish.no staff