Polish researchers killed on Svalbard

Two Polish researchers out skiing on Svalbard were found dead on Sunday, apparently after getting caught atop an avalanche in the southern region of the Arctic island group. Both worked at Poland’s research station at Hornsund on Svalbard. “We’re in shock,” the leader of the research station told Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK). The researchers, a man […]

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 […]

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 […]

Climate change threatens Svalbard

After decades of warnings, Norway’s Arctic settlements on Svalbard are suddenly facing more dramatic effects of climate change. Its current, highly visible consequences on Svalbard are emerging just as climate and environmental advocates met once again last week, for a Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco that also attracted Norwegian officials caught between efforts […]

Polar bears found ‘playing’ with plastic

When British wildlife photographer Kevin Morgans finally spotted some polar bears on Svalbard, and started taking pictures, it was with mixed feelings. His photos showed a mother and her two cubs, playing and chewing on what turned out to be plastic garbage. Morgans told Oslo newspaper Aftenposten that the three bears were resting on a […]

Polar bears return to an Arctic island

A man from Stavanger who’s working at a remote meteorology station on an island east of Svalbard encountered no less than 14 polar bears in the course of just one day. Experts think the sightings may indicate better ice conditions in the area. Bjørn Naustevik Myklebust, age 30, told local newspaper Svalbardposten that his overnight […]

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, […]

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 […]

End of an era on Norway’s Svalbard

The Arctic territory of Svalbard has long been administered by Norway, with coal mining as it major source of income. Now Norway’s government has formally decided against bailing out the Svalbard coal mining operations it owns once again, marking the end of one era and, hope most involved, the beginning of another that will continue […]