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Monthly Archives: July 2018 − News


Polar bear attack on Phipp­søya: man inju­red, polar bear shot – first details

The polar bear attack on Phipp­søya (Sjuøya­ne, Sval­bard) from Satur­day is dis­cus­sed in media and social media world­wi­de. The Sys­sel­man­nen (gover­nor, poli­ce) has released some details, but a lot of ques­ti­ons remain so far.

At 08.30 a.m. (local time), a group of 12 staff mem­bers of the crui­se ves­sel MS Bre­men went ashore on Phipp­søya to pre­pa­re a lan­ding for pas­sen­gers. The group was atta­cked on land by a polar bear, which did not react to shou­ting and shoo­ting with signal pis­tols. The bear atta­cked a 42 year old Ger­man staff mem­ber who suf­fe­red head inju­ries. The man was taken to the hos­pi­tal and later Trom­sø, his con­di­ti­on is sta­ble.

The bear was shot by 2 other mem­bers of the group and later flown to Lon­gye­ar­by­en by heli­co­p­ter for inves­ti­ga­ti­ons.

This is the infor­ma­ti­on which has been released offi­cial­ly. All infor­ma­ti­on which cir­cu­la­tes in cur­rent public dis­cus­sions bey­ond this is spe­cu­la­ti­ve.

Polar bear attack Svalbard

Polar bear on Phipp­søya, a fre­quent­ly used lan­ding site on Sjuøya­ne nort­hern­most in Spits­ber­gen (archi­ve image).

Polar bear attack on Sjuøya­ne: man inju­red

A man was inju­red by a polar bear today (Satur­day, 28 July) on Sjuøya­ne. The man sur­vi­ved with inju­ries, the bear was shot, as the Sys­sel­man­nen infor­med today.

The polar bear atta­cked per­sons who went ashore from the crui­se ship MS Bre­men. He is said to be a crew mem­ber ser­ving as polar bear guard, pre­pa­ring a tou­rist lan­ding. He suf­fe­red head inju­ries; no infor­ma­ti­on has yet been released about serious his inju­ries are. The man was brought to the hos­pi­tal in Lon­gye­ar­by­en by heli­co­p­ter.

The inci­dent will be inves­ti­ga­ted by the Sys­sel­man­nen, but first prio­ri­ty is given to pro­vi­si­on of medi­cal care to the inju­red man.

Polar bear attack Svalbard

Polar bear on Phipp­søya, a fre­quent­ly used lan­ding site on Sjuøya­ne nort­hern­most in Spits­ber­gen (archi­ve image).

Lands­li­de in Lon­gye­ar­by­en: road open again for pede­stri­ans and bicy­c­lists

Way 300 in Lon­gye­ar­by­en was clo­sed for all traf­fic after a lands­li­de clo­se to the ceme­ta­ry. This road con­nects Skjæ­rin­ga (the part of Lon­gye­ar­by­en whe­re church, Sys­sel­man­nen etc. are loca­ted) and Huset.

The Sys­sel­man­nen has now ope­ned Way 300 again for pede­stri­ans and bicy­c­lists. Moto­ri­sed traf­fic is not per­mit­ted. This is valid until fur­ther noti­ce from the Sys­sel­man­nen.

landslide Longyearbyen cemetery

Lands­li­de in Lon­gye­ar­by­en near the ceme­tery: now way 300 is open again for non-moto­ri­sed traf­fic. Image © Alex­an­der Lembke.

Hur­tig­ru­ten bans dis­po­sable plastic

On July 2, the tra­di­tio­nal ship­ping com­pa­ny Hur­tig­ru­ten cele­bra­tes its 125th bir­th­day and at the same time gives a pre­sent to the envi­ron­ment: From today on Hur­tig­ru­ten wants to banish all dis­po­sable plastic from its ships. No plastic straws, no stir­rers in plastic cof­fee cups, no plastic lids and not a sin­gle plastic bag should then be found on the ships.

This is only logi­cal: ship tra­vel­lers wit­ness the pol­lu­ti­on of the oce­ans with plastic was­te every day. Most of the plastic in the oce­ans comes from fishing, but plastic bot­t­les, plastic bags or other ever­y­day plastic arti­cles also end up on Norway’s beaches by the ton and too often end up in the sto­machs of sea­b­irds, fish and wha­les.

Plastic waste in Mushamna/ Spitsbergen

Plastic was­te in Mushamna/ Spits­ber­gen

The ban on dis­po­sable plastic arti­cles will be effec­ti­ve across the ent­i­re Hur­tig­ru­ten fleet, i.e. both on the legen­da­ry pos­tal ship rou­te from Ber­gen to Kirkenes, as well as on crui­se ships in polar waters and in all land-based faci­li­ties and also on Spits­ber­gen.

Hurtigruten’s ambi­tious long-term goal is even to beco­me the first plastic-free ship­ping com­pa­ny in the world. Even if the­re is cer­tain­ly still much room for impro­ve­ment in the crui­se ship indus­try in terms of pol­lu­ti­on and CO2 emis­si­ons, the ban on dis­po­sable plastic is a wel­co­me step in the right direc­tion.

Soon free from diposable plastic: Hurtigruten museumsship in Stokmarksnes

Soon free from dipo­sable plastic: Hur­tig­ru­ten muse­ums­ship in Stok­marks­nes

Source: Hur­tig­ru­ten

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