Briefs from Svalbardposten for the week of March 8, 2016

svalbardbooze
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City leaders don’t know how much alcohol is consumed
Politicians in Longyearbyen say total consumption of alcohol should be reduced, but don’t know how much is being sold. There were 24 alcohol licenses for local businesses and 67 licenses for various events in 2015, plus Nordpolet’s retail sales license. The Longyearbyen Community Council is working an alcohol policy proposal aimed at reduced alcohol use, especially among youths, but it is facing criticism due to a lack of reporting requirements. “Much of the assessment and the alcohol policy proposal smells of disclaimer,” said Espen Rotevatn, a Green Party member of the council. The only existing figures related to consumption are Nordpolet’s sales and Korkpenger money (cultural grants funded with taxes from alcohol sales).

Pair selected to overwinter at Austfjordnes trapping station
Gard Christophersen, 29, and Bård Blæsterdalen, 28, have been selected to spend a year as the caretakers of the historic trapping station at Austfjordnes. Eight applications from 13 people were submitted to The Governor of Svalbard, who annually picks one or more caretakers. “An overwintering year trapping is something we are really passionate about and we are convinced that we will deal with in an exceptional way if we get the opportunity,” they wrote when they submitted the application,” the winner pair wrote in their application. Both have lived in Svalbard for two-and-a-half years, and have extensive hunting and other outdoor experience.

Svalbardposten circulation down 3.5 percent in 2015
Svalbardposten’s net circulation in 2015 was 2,544, down from 2,636 in 2014. The newspaper had 111 fewer print subscribers, but an increase is digital subscribers resulted in an overall lost of 92 readers. “That represents a decline of 3.5 percent and that was expected,” said Svalbardposten Editor Eirik Palm. The totals show most residents of Svalbard read the newspaper and the number of local subscribers is holding steady. The newspaper’s website had a record number of visitors, with more than 3.4 million during 2015.

About Post Author

Mark Sabbatini

I'm a professional transient living on a tiny Norwegian island next door to the North Pole, where once a week (or thereabouts) I pollute our extreme and pristine environment with paper fishwrappers decorated with seemingly random letters that would cause a thousand monkeys with a thousand typewriters to die of humiliation. Such is the wisdom one acquires after more than 25 years in the world's second-least-respected occupation, much of it roaming the seven continents in search of jazz, unrecognizable street food and escorts I f****d with by insisting they give me the platonic tours of their cities promised in their ads. But it turns out this tiny group of islands known as Svalbard is my True Love and, generous contributions from you willing, I'll keep littering until they dig my body out when my climate-change-deformed apartment collapses or they exile my penniless ass because I'm not even worthy of washing your dirty dishes.
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