Young explorers take challenge crossing Greenland

The Greenland Ice cap is the second largest body of ice on Earth. It stretches more than 2’500 km north-south and measures 1’100 km across. It covers more than 82% of Greenland and elevates up to 3 km making any crossing almost a high-altitude trip. Credit: Michael Wenger

Crossing the Greenland ice cap by foot still is one of the biggest challenges in modern exploration. This feat was first achieved by Norwegian Polar explorer Fridtjof Nansen in 1888. To commemorate his achievement, a group of 5 explorers and one guide will attempt to relive this remarkable journey starting in May.

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Australian seed collection bound for icy Doomsday Vault in Norway

In the Australian Grains Genebank in Horsham in Victoria Different seeds are labelled for identification purposes. (Credit: ABC News, Kerry Staight)

Australia has made its largest deposit into the global seed vault in Svalbard, Norway, as part of the 10th anniversary of the facility dubbed the "Doomsday Vault". In February 2018, more than 30 crates containing 34,000 different types of grain and pasture seeds were delivered to one of the most remote places on Earth for safekeeping.

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AECO represents cruise industry in Arctic rescue network

The AECO is an association formed by many Arctic cruise industry stakeholders. The goals are to promote a safe and environmental friendly tourism in the Arctic Polar Region. AECO ships are well-equipped and able to assist search and rescue operations in many ways. Credit: Michael Wenger

Tourism in the Arctic is a fast-growing branch within the cruise industry. However, this also increases the potential risk of accidents and incidents as not all ships are equally suited for visits to the Arctic. Now, Cruise industry, authorities and researchers will join forces to enhance Arctic SAR through the new ARCSAR network. Having secured €3.5 million in EU funding, the ARCSAR project will run for five years and include a live exercise on a cruise vessel.

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POLARNEWS WISHES A HAPPY NEW YEAR AND ALL THE BEST FOR 2018!!

POLARNEWS WISHES A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR

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Crashed helicopter off Barentsburg to be recovered

The Norwegian Civil Aviation Authorities will recover the Russian Mi-8 helicopter that had crashed on Thursday October 26 2017 off Barentsburg, as quickly as possible to investigate the reason of the crash according to a news dispatch. All eight occupants, five crew and three researchers were killed in the accident.

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Russia takes the chance for Arctic oil development

Despite international sanctions and record-low oil prices, Russia pursues a rather offensive plan of further developing oil resources in its Arctic region. This is gambling with high stakes. However, Russian authorities as well as Rosneft and Gazprom both are confident that the investements will pay off eventually.

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AECO and IAATO jointly promote responsible Polar tourism

On October 1 - 4, more than 90 representatives from the Arctic and Antarctic expedition cruise industry will gather in Iceland for the second AECO/IAATO Polar Field Staff Conference. The topic of the conference is evolution and new challenges in the polar tourism industry.

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Tsunami hits West Greenland coast

Since 2004, tsunamis have received a much bigger attention after several of these big waves had hit coastal areas in Asia killing more than 200‘000 people. However, these waves are not bound to the tropical or subtropical areas. On Saturday, June 17th, waves had struck the western coast of Greenland, causing havoc and destruction and presumably leaving four people dead.

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Arctic tourism organizations launch visitor guidelines for Arctic communities

Five Arctic tourism organizations have joined forces to develop guidelines for tourists visiting Arctic communities. In addition to general advice on how to behave, the organizations presented a tool that allows communities create their own tailored guidelines.

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Russia’s latest military base opens its doors

The Franz-Josef-Land archipelago is the northernmost landmass and is part of Motherland Russia. Considered as the western gateway into the Northeast Passage as well as to the North Pole, it is strategically important to the government in Moscow. With the renewed interest in the Arctic and its resources by Russia, authorities had made the establishment of a military base on one of the archipelago’s islands the highest priority. Now, after 3 years of construction, the complex at Nagurskoye Base on Aleksandra Island has opened its doors and was visited by president Putin and a high profile delegation.

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