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Daily Archives: 18. October 2019 − News & Stories


Fine for dis­tur­ban­ce of polar bears in Tem­pel­fjord

A man from Lon­gye­ar­by­en got a fine of 15,000.00 kro­ner (ca. 1500 Euro) becau­se he dis­tur­bed polar bears during a pri­va­te snow mobi­le tour in Tem­pel­fjord in 10 March, 2018. He is said to have approa­ched the bear with the snow mobi­le to a distance of 70 met­res so the bears were visi­bly dis­tur­bed and moved away.

The inci­dent was seen by wit­nesses who were out on tour on the neigh­bou­ring moun­tain Fjord­nib­ba. The man was soon stop­ped by field poli­ce. A second man who was also invol­ved could not be iden­ti­fied.

Becau­se of the increase of snow mobi­le traf­fic, the Sys­sel­man­nen has announ­ced to take strong action in such cases to make it clear bey­ond any doubt that the pro­tec­tion of the wild­life is of hig­hest prio­ri­ty. In the cur­rent case, the fine has been impo­sed by the sta­te advo­ca­te in north Nor­way, as reve­a­led by the Sys­sel­man­nen.

The case cau­sed some deba­te in social net­works in Lon­gye­ar­by­en. Only a few days later the fjord ice in Tem­pel­fjord, until then a popu­lar desti­na­ti­on both for locals and tou­rists, was clo­sed for most moto­ri­sed traf­fic.

Eisbären Tempelfjord

Polar bears in Tem­pel­fjord (or else­whe­re, for that mat­ter): any dis­tur­ban­ce is strict­ly for­bidden.

Accor­ding to the Spits­ber­gen envi­ron­men­tal law (Sval­bard­mil­jø­l­ov kapit­tel IV § 30) “it is for­bidden to attract, to fol­low or seek out by any acti­ve act, polar bears so the­se could be dis­tur­bed or the­re may be dan­ger for humans or polar bears (ori­gi­nal text: Det er for­budt å lok­ke til seg, for­føl­ge eller ved annen aktiv hand­ling oppsøke isbjørn slik at den blir fors­tyr­ret eller det kan opps­tå fare for men­nes­ker eller isbjørn.)

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