Tag Archives: Norwegian Meteorological Institute

In-the-red storm rising: Meteorological institute may eliminate staff at Hopen station, majority at Bjørnøya due to deficits

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Eliminating five of the nine employees at the Bjørnøya Meteorological Station and automating operations at the Hopen station where four people now work is being considered by the Norwegian Meteorological Institute to help cope with a long-term deficit, according to the agency’s director.

Briefs from Svalbardposten for the week of June 20, 2017

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Better efficiency called key part of future energy supply
Buildings in Longyearbyen are so energy inefficient it’s possible to increase population by nearly half, build houses for them and still save energy compared to what Longyearbyen uses today.

Governor issues travel warning after avalanche near Longyearbyen; heavy snow forecast through Tuesday

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An avalanche triggered by heavy snow this weekend forced the temporary closure of a popular snowmobile trail on a glacier just south of Longyearbyen and The Governor of Svalbard said the risk of snowslides in the mountains remains high with more snow forecast through Tuesday.

Slush funk: Svalbard turns into watery winter wasteland with Norway’s highest temperatures

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Temperatures in Svalbard aren’t that far above average – for August.

But being on the opposite side of the calendar year means the high temperatures at various places in the archipelago are – to repeat an oft-used phrase as of late – freakishly warm. The average historical temperature for February at Longyearbyen Airport is minus 16 degrees Celsius, but highs from Sunday through Tuesday were 5.6, 5.9 and 5.4 degrees, respectively, according to the Norwegian Meteorological Institute.

From one extreme to the other: Yet another month of record heat in November gives way to -21C this week

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If December’s average temperature in Longyearbyen is minus four degrees Celsius or warmer, the yearly average will be above freezing for the first time in history. But what seemed highly possible a couple of weeks ago now appears highly doubtful with the community plunging into a deep freeze this week.

Hot and wet: Longyearbyen sets precipitation, heat records in October; 71st straight month of above-average temps

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It’s not exactly earth-shattering news that this October was by far the warmest and wettest in Longyearbyen – that part already happened with all the landslides that occurred during the month due to the weird weather.

But some figures beyond the month and beyond Longyearbyen certainly might rattle folks.

Hot and bothered: Longyearbyen’s temperatures more than 10C above normal from December to February

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If you’re feeling like we’re in a god-awful cold spell, stop bitching: this is supposed to be normal weather this time of year. You just haven’t had a chance to get acclimated to it.

Temperatures in Longyearbyen were more than 10 degrees Celsius above normal during the months from December to February, according to the Norwegian Meteorological Institute. That’s part of a general trend across the Arctic that has resulted in record-low sea ice levels (none is expected to form in western Spitsbergen this year), far outpacing a 1.35-degree increase in global temperatures during 2015.

AVALANCHE UPDATE: Community meeting Tuesday; Queen Sonja and justice minister to visit Thursday-Friday

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Queen Sonja and Norwegian Minister of Justice and Public Security Anders Anundsen are scheduled to visit Longyearbyen Thursday and Friday to meet with local leaders, rescue officials and volunteers, and those suffering the loss of homes and loved ones in the Dec. 19 avalanche.

AVALANCHE UPDATE: Storm w/ heavy precipitation, gale-force winds, temps to 7C expected Wed.-Thurs.; evacuation extended through New Year’s

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A storm expected to bring heavy rain and sleet, gale-force winds and temperatures up to seven degrees Celsius between midnight Wednesday and Thursday night presents a risk of new avalanches, according to officials who have extended an evacuation order for 80 residents with homes in the highest-risk area through New Year’s Day.

The storm could bring up to 20 millimeters of precipitation – about the same as the snowfall that triggered the Dec. 19 avalanche that buried 11 homes and killed two people, although that storm occurred over a period of several hours – and winds up to 50 kilometers per hour, according to the Norwegian Meteorological Institute. The heaviest rainfall and highest temperatures are expected Thursday afternoon.

AVALANCHE UPDATE: Mixture of snow, rain and temps up to 5C next week ‘could be good or it could be really bad’

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Rapidly rising temperatures expected to reach five degrees Celsius by Tuesday, and a mixture of rain and snow, could help settle avalanche-prone snow in Longyearbyen – or trigger it, one of two experts who surveyed the area last week said Sunday.

“It could be good be good or it could be really bad,” said Odd-Arne Mikkelsen of the Norwegian Geotechnical Institute. “It depends on the amount of precipitation, but right now it looks like small amount so that would be good.”