Briefs from Svalbardposten for the week of July 27, 2021


Photo of delegation visit to Ny-Ålesund courtesy of Kings Bay AS

The number of research days in Ny-Ålesund is cut by more than half in 2020 due to Covid, winter alcohol sales stave off a sobering year for Korkpenger grants and city technicians save the local government’s computers from a data attack.

Research days in Ny-Ålesund down 54 percent in 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic

The number of research days in Ny-Ålesund was reduced by more than half due to the COVID-19 pandemic, costing the Norwegian government tens of millions of kroner, according to Kings Bay AS’ annual report. The state-owned company states the international research settlement at 79 degrees latitude north tallied slightly more than 8,000 overnight stays for researchers during 2020, a 54 percent reduction from 2019. A total of 47 million kroner in overall assistance has been provided during 2020 and so far in 2021. Typically about 150 projects involving researchers from 20 countries are taking place in the settlement. are underway on site. The researchers come from about 20 countries.

Alcohol sales to winter workers, visitors liven up Korkpenger funds

Predictions of a dire year for Korkpenger culture grant funds proved decidedly less sobering as tourists and construction workers boosted Nordpolet’s retail alcohol sales toward the end of 2020. The store reported nearly 23 million in income, about 3.4 million than the previous year, but still made a profit of 5.4 million kroner that was transferred to the Korkpenger fund. In addition, there is 3.4 million remaining from 2021 to be distributed and two million kroner the Longyearbyen Municipal Council saved from the 2020 funds. However, with the pandemic lingering the council may again roll some funds over until next year.

Data attack on city supplier system stopped by local security technicians

A data attack on the Longyearbyen municipal government’s supplier systems was halted by local security technicians before any damage occurred, according to City Manager Morten Dyrstad. The March 3 attack was part of a larger infiltration against several Norwegian municipalities. While employees noticed the local attack quickly, it did result in the system being unavailable for a few hours that day while technicians dealt with the matter.