Briefs from Svalbardposten for the week of Nov, 3, 2015


LNS starting a treasure hunt for rubies in Greenland   
LNS is scheduled to start trial production is scheduled to start this month at the Aappaluttoq ruby mine in Greenland, which Administrative Director Frode Nilsen said could be worth billions of dollars. “This will be the world’s largest ruby mine where they are taken out of solid rock,” he said. “The most common is to extract them from the soil.” The initial estimate for the deposit to be mined is 400 million carats of rubies, or 80,000 kilograms. “The price for rubies and sapphires can vary between two to 18 dollars per carat,” Nilsen said. “Sometimes it may be much higher, depending on the quality of the stone. The mine is located on the southwest coast of Greenland about 160 kilometers south of the capital Nuuk.

Resolution expected soon in bear attack case from March
The leader of a group attacked by a polar bear at a campsite in March still has not indicated if he will accept a 10,000-kroner fine or go to court after he was charged with negligence that resulted in the bear’s death. “We are expecting a quick resolution in a matter of weeks,” said Lt. Gov. Jens Olav Sæther. The lear of the Czech group was the first person charged under a law requiring people to take precautions to prevent attacks which, combined with his being a foreigner, has resulted in the delay while he seeks advice, Sæther said. A tripwire alarm system was improperly set up around the campsite and there was no guard on duty when the bear attacked. One person sustained modest head and shoulder injuries in the attack, but officials were forced to kill the bear after the tourists shot and wounded it. The group delayed reporting the incident for about an hour, raising further questions about their actions.

Svalbardbutikken planning expansion despite crisis
Despite the coal crisis threatening to cripple Longyearbyen’s economy, Svalbardbutikken is planning to proceed with a 43-million-kroner expansion and refurbishment this spring. “We believe in Longyearbyen,” said Administrative Director Morten Helliksen.