Category Archives: Svalbard

Random weirdness for the week of Jan 16, 2018

boxgetty

OK, we definitely don’t want the competition given our status as Svalbard’s resident street beggars, but since we’re journalists first and foremost we feel obliged to point out the riches this utterly boring and obsolete photo is worth to folks outside Svalbard who don’t know any better. Yup, it’s a drab and dull photo of that giant Santa’s mailbox that no longer exist (except in pieces in a storage container where it once stood), but digital copies are selling for 4,000 each at Getty Images, a publications, magazines and other media/PR venues. Check out the related images beneath and it’s clear anyone with a smartphone can take premium-priced images if they’re accepted as a contributor. Yup, we’ve sent in our stuff, so if nothing else we’ve got a brief headstart on folks who actually know how to use a camera…

Briefs from Svalbardposten for the week of Jan. 16, 2018

ny1

Organized fireworks celebration proposed for next New Year’s
A communal New Year’s fireworks show next year is being proposed by a Longyearbyen resident who says it will be safer and more environmentally friendly.

STORM ALERT: 20-40mm of precipitation, near-gale winds, warm temps, high avalanche risk forecast Saturday

alertmap

A storm is expected to dump up to 40 millimeters of precipitation – all or mostly rain – in Longyearbyen on Saturday, causing significant avalanche and flooding risks, according to an alert issued Friday by the Norwegian Meteorological Institute.

SPECIAL REPORT: Polarizing polar bears – unmasking a proxy war strategy by online climate change denialists

starvingbear

By Paul Rosenberg
Senior Editor, Random Lengths News

In early December, a video of a dying, emaciated polar bear, foraging for food on an iceless land, went viral on social media. The video garnered millions of views on Facebook and YouTube. For most, it was a vivid signal of the future in store for us all due to human-caused (anthropogenic) global warming ― rising temperatures due to increased carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gases. For those who deny or minimize the existence of anthropogenic global warming it wasn’t a polar bear, but a red herring (“Propaganda,” one YouTube viewer called it) — no one knows why it was dying, much less if it can be connected to global warming.

That’s true, but also a bit beside the point.

Random weirdness for the week of Jan. 9, 2018

foxlights

We run lots of nudity during our nearly ten years of existence, but we feel safe declaring this the foxiest photo ever published b a tabloid. And it was taken a virgin, no less. This shot of a polar fox under the Northern Lights near Longyearbyen was captured on film Jan. 5 by Lise Loktu, a cultural heritage advisor for The Governor of Svalbard, who said this is her first photo of a fox. As animal porn goes, it definitely delivers a glow…

A lot of lights: Svalbardbutikken proposes redesigned parking area with LED markers for car, taxi and bus spaces

glowingparkinglot

Svalbardbutikken has no problem with an eye-catching distraction in front of its store. They’re just prefer it not be a competing supermarket.

The inevitable and inexhaustible ‘best of 2017’ listicles are out. Here’s the ones that saw fit to include Svalbard

polarbearseal

The lists include local beer, data, mining of coal and sugar, horror podcasts, and science. And lots of dramatic photos.

Doomsday scenarios: Impending collision with Planet X, ‘flooded’ seed vault, toilet paper famine among Svalbard’s 10 strangest stories of 2017

strangest

“There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers exactly what the Universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable.

There is another theory which states that this has already happened.”

― Douglas Adams, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe

•••••

We feel safe saying after 2017 we’re now living in an alternate universe.

Briefs from Svalbardposten for the week of Jan. 2, 2018

deadreindeer

Loose dog attacks reindeer, forcing officials to kill it
A reindeer attacked by a loose dog just outside Longyearbyen had to be killed by officials Monday night due to the severity of the injuries.

It’s all relative: Temperatures 4.5C above normal in Longyearbyen in 2017, but that’s chilly compared to 2016

tempchart

OK, for those still unclear on the weather/climate concept: Longyearbyen had a couple of days of chilly weather to end 2017. But the climate here continues to show dramatic long-term change as temperatures during the year were again significantly above average.