Tag Archives: coal crisis

Into blackness: Svalbard’s 12 biggest stories of 2015


It was already a shell-shocked community beginning to say their farewells to possibly a quarter of the town’s residents, with those left behind worrying about the future of a town with a decimated economic foundation.

Then the avalanche struck.

Either alone ranks among the most significant events in Longyearbyen’s history. Together they may reshape the town more dramatically than at any time since it was almost entirely destroyed during World War II.

A future on hold: Government agrees to give Store Norske up to 400M during next three years to ‘pause’ Lunckefjell, double shifts at Mine 7


The Norwegian government is recommending spending up to 400 million kroner so Store Norske can maintain inoperative facilities at its largest mines during the next three years and employ a double shift at Mine 7.

Briefs from Svalbardposten for the week of Dec. 8, 2015


Store Norske cancels flight contract with Lufttransport
A contract for Lufttransport to provide daily flights between Longyearbyen and Svea is being terminated as of next June due to the shutdown of mining operations, Store Norske announced this week.

Down to 98…or 28: Minister says Svea and Lunckfjell will likely shut temporarily or permanently‚ Mine 7 will employ one or two shifts


It’s not exactly an answer, but anyone still clinging to the hope the government will help Store Norske be more than mere shadow of its former self should probably give up.

A best-case scenario of 98 remaining employees at the mining company and a worst-case of fewer than 30 now appears likely, based on statements by Minister of Trade and Industry Monica Mæland in a Dec. 6 letter to Longyearbyen Mayor Arild Olsen.

Costly overtime: Store Norske Store Norske in talks with bank to avoid more layoffs as government misses crisis response deadline


That the government’s failure to respond by a “drop-dead deadline” isn’t yet fatal is what passes for good news these days at Store Norske.

The coal company remains in discussions with DNB about a loan and line of credit the bank is providing that is keeping the company alive – if far from healthy – as it awaits word on whether it’s future will be catastrophic or merely tragic.

Will there be more? Gov’t announces 50M for local jobs; decision on 285M in aid for Store Norske apparently still pending


If it’s a supplement to Store Norske’s request for help it’s a blessing. If it’s a substitute it’s a curse.

An allocation of 50 million kroner for “restructuring measures” in Svalbard was announced Friday by the Norwegian Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries. The funding includes 23 million kroner for job “innovation and development” through Innovation Norway, and 22 million to Longyearbyen’s city government for infrastructure maintenance and improvements.

Golden opportunity or fool’s gold? Some want rejected ideas to be considered again as remedy to coal crisis


While the government is taking longer than locals want to make a seemingly simple  yes/no decision about Store Norske’s mining future, some leaders are making late pushes for alternatives involving industries and projects previously considered undesirable or unworkable.

Get off your assess: Businesses out of patience, say government’s delay in Store Norske crisis hurting them


There’s only so much time to figure out how to rescue a drowning man.

That, writ large, is the scathing message released this week by the Svalbard Business Association, stating the government’s delay in deciding its plans for Store Norske in the wake the company’s coal crisis is leaving too many residents gasping for air.

Dark times set in: Store Norske’s losses continue, coal company’s equity drops 94 percent during past 12 months


After a while the bad numbers lose some of their shock value, but this one is still rather staggering.

A year ago, Store Norske had nearly 1.3 billion kroner in equity. As of the end of last month, it has 73 million kroner.

Undeserving? Skeptics question Store Norske’s hiring leaders without mining experience, request for more funds


Why should Store Norske get any more taxpayer money? Coal mining is a dirty business and its leaders are doing a lousy job managing it.