Newsletter: The Border-Crossing North

Alaskas flagg
Alaska's flag symbolizes the star pattern Ursa Major (Latin), Big Dipper (American), Karlsvogna (Norwegian), and Dávggát (Northern Sami). The flag came about through a competition in 1927 in which school pupils submitted proposals. The design of 13-year-old Benny Benson from the fishing village of Chignik won the competition. The name Alaska is derived from the Aleutian Al-ya-ek-sa, which means 'the great land' or 'that against which the sea breaks.' (Photo: Nordting/Jamie Michael Bivard)

Dear reader. On Saturday, the world's first Pan-Arctic Vision took place. We also bring the latest news from the announced electrification of Melkøya and Russia's ventures toward Asia. And much more. Here is the week as seen from the North.

This week, we welcome the rich cultural life of the Arctic. A border-crossing cultural life led by Norwegian enthusiasts. 

On Saturday, Pan-ArcticVision premiered in Vadsø, Northern Norway. A grand, crazy, and beautiful project, according to the Artistic Director, who welcomes us to the border-crossing building of the Arctic community. 

See all the musical contributions in the article. 

Our journalist Astri Edvardsen also brings us back to the Arctic Arts Festival earlier this summer, in which Pikene på Broen and various artists gave us a glimpse of the good life in the North. 

Russia looks toward Asia 

Transit traffic on Russia’s Northern Sea Route could reach all-time highs this summer as Russia continues to dispatch crude oil tankers to China via the Arctic. 

Our journalist Malte Humpert also reports on the ongoing construction work at a Russian shipyard that reached the next milestone with the successful launch of an oil tanker and an LNG carrier. 

Russia and China also showed their presence outside Alaska, where the US dispatched warships after Russian and Chinese military vessels carried out a patrol off the coast of the Aleutian Islands. 

Conflict-ridden electrification 

This week, the Norwegian government announced that it favors electrifying Equinor's LNG plant on Melkøya outside Hammerfest, Northern Norway. 

The reactions were not long in coming, and left-wing politicians call it an "idiotic idea." (Norwegian only) 

Editor-in-Chief Arne O. Holm, however, believes that the power package – an act "full of absurdities and paradoxes" – may be significant for the region.  

"Because the other side of the package is about taking the energy crisis in Finnmark seriously," writes Holm in this week's commentary. 

A new report shows that the feared wave of bankruptcies after the pandemic did not hit Northern Norway, and conflicts have arisen around the Iron Ore Line in Sweden. (Both in Norwegian)

 Many have opinions on the High North, and High North News often publishes op-eds. 

A new and fresh voice joining the debate is research fellow Maja Wolland Blomberg at the High North Center, who believes the language we use about Northern Norway affects the development of the region. (Norwegian only) 

Next week, I will be at the Arendal Week in Southern Norway together with the rest of the Norwegian media, researchers, politicians, businesses, and more. Perhaps I will see you there? 

On behalf of the editorial staff, I wish you a wonderful weekend.

Sincerely, News Editor Trine Jonassen 

This newsletter has been translated by HNN's Birgitte Annie Molid Martinussen