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Monthly Archives: August 2009 − News & Stories


CO2-storage underground in Adventdalen

The idea to manage a »CO2-free« Spitsbergen in the not too far future has suffered several setbacks already, but is still being followed. So far, three research drillings to search for sandstone layers suitable for CO2-storage in depths of several hundred meters under terrain had to be abandoned because of technical problems. A fourth attempt will be started soon near the old airstrip in Adventdalen.

BThe next drilling will take place near the old northern light observatory in Adventdalen.

CO2-storage underground in Adventdalen

Source: Svalbardposten

Arctic Ocean possibly seasonally ice-free as early as 2030

There has been a year-round ice-cover on the Arctic Ocean since approximately 15 million years. New research results indicate that this relatively young, but for the Arctic extremely important ecosystem might get lost again as soon as around 2030. It has to be expected that the Arctic Ocean will be completely ice-free during the summer and that sea ice is reduced to a seasonal cover during the winter and spring.

The tooth of climate change is nagging on arctic sea ice.

Arctic Ocean possibly seasonally ice-free as early as 2030

Source: Nalân Koç, norwegisches Polarinstitut

Ban on entering carst cave

Karst caves exist due to water that circulates through water-soluble rock types such as limestone. DN (Norwegian directorate for nature administration), that has recently gained a reputation for various attempts to forbid pretty much anything that other people might enjoy in arctic nature, has made a proposal to put a ban on entering karst caves. The fact that there are no karst caves known in Spitsbergen is of no hinder. If there were any, they would certainly be interesting, so why not forbid entering them, just in case…

Old mine for marble, a crystalline carbonate rock, in Kongsfjord.
Could be a cave, who knows?

Ban on entering carst cave

Source: Svalbardposten

Grounding of Russian ship at Bjørnøya IV

All oil derivates (diesel, lubrication oil) has been removed from the Rusian freezing ship Petrozavodsk, that ran aground near the southern tip of Bjørnøya on 11 May. Operations were completed on 05 August. Smaller spills of oil from the wreck did not cause any environmental damage, according to field biologists.

The Russian owner company is theoretically obliged to remove the wreck, but is unlikely to do so as actual costs are expected to exceed those that the company legally has cover. The future of the wreck is therefor unclear, but at least it does not impose any major environmental hazard anymore.

Pumping operation at the wreck of Petrozavodsk. Foto © Kystverket

Grounding of Russian ship at Bjørnøya IV

Source: Kystverket

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