Rabies threatens Svalbard reindeer

Authorities on Norway’s Arctic island group of Svalbard have burned the carcass of a local reindeer suspected of being infected with rabies. The reindeer’s hind legs had become lame, an indication of the rabies virus. The burned carcass has sparked debate on Svalbard, for being what some call a “grotesque” response, but veterinarians and local […]

Finnmark mining protests underway

Government ministers arriving for the weekly Council of State at the Royal Palace on Friday were met by noisy and angry demonstrators, protesting their decision last week to allow a controversial mining and dumping operation in Finnmark. More protests were held through the weekend, in Alta, Tromsø, Hamar, Flekkefjord, Sunndal, Trondheim and Oslo. The decision […]

Norway won snow crab conflict

Norway’s Supreme Court has rejected an appeal from a Latvian fishing vessel that was convicted of illegally trapping snow crabs off Svalbard. The high court concluded that Norway, which has control over the Arctic island group through an international treaty, has exclusive rights to harvest the crabs. The Latvians’ legal complaint has been working its […]

Critics rage against new Amundsen film

Roald Amundsen remains one of Norway’s greatest heroes, a polar explorer who brought pride and fame to a newly independent country at the turn of the 20th century. A new film about him premiered nationwide in Norway on Friday, but got off to rather poor start. Norwegian critics have panned the film, calling it everything from […]

Climate change ravages Svalbard

A new report compiled by Norway’s leading climate researchers predicts much warmer temperatures on the Arctic island group of Svalbard in the years ahead, with more rain, flooding and landslides expected. The report has been described by experts as both “very dramatic” and among the “most frightening” to be released yet. Much of the damage […]

Residents evacuated as storm hits Svalbard

More than 100 residents of Longyearbyen, the main settlement on Svalbard, were evacuated after a severe winter storm slammed into the Arctic island group on Svalbard. Schools, day care centers and several stores and businesses were also closed, as meteorologists warned that the weather would get worse before getting better. Avalanche danger was set at […]

Pollution fears rise around Svalbard

A particularly senstive area of Svalbard was under threat of oil pollution this week, after a trawler grounded in bad weather in a remote northern area of the Norwegian-administered island group in the Arctic. On board the trawler are 300,000 liters of diesel oil that may start to leak. “One drop of diesel that makes […]

‘Goliat’ platform in trouble again

The huge Goliat oil platform, Norway’s first in the Barents Sea, is still plagued by so many technical problems that safety regulators are warning they’ll issue an injunction to halt operations if the problems aren’t solved. The order comes just after Goliat came under new management and altered ownership this week, and as Norway must […]

Strong earthquake shakes Arctic island

Norway’s Arctic island Jan Mayen was shaken by an unusually strong earthquake during the night that measured 6.8 on the Richter scale. There were no reports of injuries, but state employees stationed there had a rude awakening. “It was a bit of a shock,” Silje Wennesland told news bureau NTB. She’s among the 14 military […]

New oil discovery ‘important’

Norway’s state oil company Equinor called the discovery of more oil in the Barents Sea “important,” when announcing this week that a well drilled near the Johan Castberg field can yield 25 million barrels. Nick Ashton, in charge of Equinor’s offshore exploration on the Norwegian and British continental shelfs, said oil from the new well […]