Tag Archives: Store Norske

MINE 7 CLOSING IN 2023: Shutdown of last Norwegian coal mine accelerated again as Longyearbyen will switch to diesel for power; production to increase for final two years

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Photo courtesy of Store Norske

The last Norwegian coal mine will cease operations in 2023 – five years sooner than an already accelerated plan envisioned just months ago – as Longyearbyen’s Community Council voted this week to shut down the town’s coal-fired power plant and temporarily switch to diesel until a permanent alternative source is determined.

As a result, Store Norske said it cannot operate Mine 7 profitably without supplying the power plant, although it will boost the mine’s production by about 30 percent until the shutdown to take advantage of current high coal prices in Europe. The shutdown will result in the loss of about 55 man-years of labor.

MEGA MERGER: Store Norske buys Hurtigruten Svalbard’s properties, agrees to 30-year joint tourism operation

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Store Norske, in a significant step toward transitioning to new industries beyond coal mining, announced Monday it is buying all of the properties of Hurtigruten Svalbard – the archipelago’s largest tour company – and the two companies are entering into a 30-year operations agreement.

MINE 7 TO CLOSE IN 2028: Last Norwegian coal mine to shut down when Longyearbyen’s coal power plant does; Store Norske will then dismantle mine and focus on ‘greener’ energy

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The “cornerstone” of Longyearbyen’s 115-year existence is set to reach its final end after a years-long phaseout, as Mine 7 is scheduled to cease operations in 2028 and be dismantled during the next two years, Svalbardposten reported Friday.

SOME ‘NORMAL’ TRAVEL RESTRICTION NEWS, FOR A CHANGE: Heavy machinery now occupying ‘industrial’ path between Longyearbyen and Svea as dismantling of mine continues

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So it’s hard enough to get to Svalbard during peak snowmobiling season this year thanks to COVID-19 restrictions and it’s possible some of most-popular areas will be off-limits to scooters soon to protect wildlife. Time to add another steely blockade of sorts – heavy construction equipment along the main path between Longyearbyen and Svea as work crews continue a years-long dismantling of the mining settlement.

NEW POWER PLANT ‘WITHIN TWO TO FIVE YEARS’: Norway’s government says new climate-friendly energy facility will be in 2022 budget; fate of Mine 7 and Store Norske uncertain

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A major and accelerated transition from a coal-fueled to a climate-friendly power plant in Longyearbyen, with a new facility in the 2022 budget that is operating within two to five years, was announced Monday by Norway’s government.

The announcement, if fulfilled, means the city’s 38-year-old coal plant will shut down well before the end of its theoretical life expectancy – although it will decommissioned in phases. It also means Mine 7 will lose its essential purpose of supplying coal to the power plant, leaving uncertain the fate of the last mining operation by Store Norske and other Norwegian companies that have been the foundation of Longyearbyen’s existence for virtually all of its 115-year history.

COAL SEASON IS HERE AGAIN: Mine 7 reopens after being flooded by record July heat, but operational challenges remain

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Mine 7 is finally resuming production more than three months after meltwater from a glacier above it caused by record heat flooded the tunnels and damaged equipment, with extraction and restoration efforts taking far longer than expected for the mine that supplies Longyearbyen’s electricity plant.

DRAINING DISASTER: Mine 7 flooded by melting glacier caused by record heat; pause in operations until Aug. 17 due to COVID-19 now likely to be prolonged

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A “major inflow of water” into Mine 7 from a melting glacier caused by a heat wave that triggered Longyearbyen’s highest recorded temperature in history is forcing Store Norske to undertake an extensive operator to remove the water and assess damage to equipment, which likely will prevent from mine from resuming operations next month following a suspension caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the company announced this week.

GO WITH THE FLOE: Store Norske joins ‘renaming’ craze with new logo reflecting shift from ice-hard mining tradition to rapidly moving transition to multitude of industries

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First the governor lost its manhood and now only days later Store Norske’s ice-hard embodiment has gone soft.

CORONAVRUS UPDATES FOR SVALBARD FOR MONDAY: Kindergarten resumes, more Norwegian Air troubles, Mine 7 cuts operations, major SvalSat customer bankrupt and more

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This story will be updated throughout the day (most recent: 4 p.m.). Photo of Madelin Stiberg’s upside-down lifestyle under the first midnight sun of the year by Audun Domaas Pedersen.

Some of Longyearbyen’s smallest residents were the focus of the first small step in reopening public facilities after five week of shutdowns due to the coronavirus pandemic, as locals kindergartens and those nationwide were allowed to reopen Monday under tight safety guidelines.

But that glimmer of normalcy continues to be outnumbered by a range of other immediate and longer-term adverse impacts, including a reduction in the already low level of local coal mining, the bankruptcy of a SvalSat customer that was supposed to provide internet coverage across the entire Arctic via satellite, and Norwegian Air announcing more mass layoffs and the bankruptcy of four subsidiaries (although for now its reduced operations in Norway are not further affected).

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE FOR SVALBARD FOR MONDAY: Masks donated by Store Norske to Tromsø hospital ‘do not protect well enough,’ food and book deliveries, and more

An effort by Store Norske to be generous by donating thousands of face masks from its now idle coal mines to a Tromsø hospital with a critical shortage need has come to an unfortunately ending as the masks are inadequate for medical staff besieged by the coronavirus pandemic, Norwegian media reported Monday.

The boxes of dust masks are stamped 3M, but because they’re from China may be pirated and Store Norske acknowledged the quality was not certain of the 9,000 masks, 6,000 of which were sent to The University Hospital of Northern Norway about three weeks ago, according to Verdens Gang.

“”It’s an incredibly sad case,” Grethe Andersen, the university’s operations and property manager, told the newspaper. “We are afraid that the masks do not protect well enough against the virus.”