Newsletter: Dreams of a Vibrant High North

Utsikt over Bodø
There is a whole lot going on up north! (Photo of Bodø: Trine Jonassen)
The High North Tour 2021 has revealed particularly one thing along the way: The dream about a vibrant High North. The dream about restoring Vardø to its former glory, building a viable community based on hydrogen production in Berlevåg and increasing vital competence for those living in the northernmost parts of the country.

The High North Tour rolls on with Editor-in-Chief Arne O. Holm behind the wheel. For those who do not know Northern Norway that well, Holm offers unique insight into real life in the High North.

Take Vardø, for instance. The town located further east than St. Petersburg, in which American radar installations meet the Russian border.

Ordfører i Vardø fra Miljøpartiet De Grønne, Ørjan Jensen.
Ordfører i Vardø fra Miljøpartiet De Grønne, Ørjan Jensen. (Foto: Arne O. Holm)
Norway’s only Green Party mayor, Ørjan Jensen. (Foto: Arne O. Holm)

Our editor-in-chief chatted with Norway’s only Green Party mayor, Ørjan Jensen, who wants more rewards for Vardø’s hosting vital elements of the Norwegian defense.

Exciting things are happening in Berlevåg too. For ten years, Berlevåg Municipality Business Developer Kjell Richardsen has dreamed about a local hydrogen factory. He was early on the field with ideas “everyone” is talking about today.

It has been a busy week for the High North News mobile office, also reporting from Alta.

In Alta, the university, local business and the municipality have joined forces to create what they refer to as a visualization center for building and construction. In this way, both students and the construction industry can meet in the same facilities at Campus Alta.

There, you will also find Jørund Greibrokk at UiT Alta’s Business School. He talks about his 1,600 students who long before the pandemic hit were able to get a full education from their own homes.

Security and expansion

Several American Members of Congress have recently introduced bills to establish an American Ambassador-at-Large for the Arctic in order to bolster American diplomacy in the region.

"The United States is an Arctic nation because of Alaska, and it is more important than ever that the United States is well-positioned to maintain security and stability in the region", they write.

Lars Fause på Svalbard, mai 2021. (Foto: Privat)
Lars Fause var på Svalbard i april for å ha overlappingsmøter med nåværende sysselmann, Kjerstin Askholt. – Jeg skulle ønske jeg fikk jobbe mer sammen med henne. Hun er et fantastisk menneske, sier Fause om møtet. Under oppholdet ble det tid til en skutertur til fangststasjonen Villa Fredheim i Tempelfjorden. (Foto: Sysselmesteren på Svalbard)
Lars Fause went to Svalbard last April for overlap meetings with current governor Kjerstin Askholt. (Photo: The Svalbard Governor)

This week High North News had a chat with jurist Lars Fause, who follows a lifelong dream when he assumes the position of Svalbard Governor and becomes Norway’s prime representative in Svalbard.

We can also report that the Danish parliament, Folketinget, has ratified agreements with Iceland and Norway that expand the maritime boundaries on the continental shelf north of the Faroe Islands by some 27,000 square kilometers. (Norwegian only)

Election coming up

Polar scientist and anthropologist Grete Kaare Hovelsrud is nominated for election as President of the International Arctic Social Sciences Association (IASSA). Thus, the international research organization and its secretariat may end up in Bodø, Norway for the first time ever. (Norwegian only)

Polar scientist and anthropologist Grete Kaare Hovelsrud
(Foto: Grete Hovelsrud). 
Polar scientist and anthropologist Grete Kaare Hovelsrud. (Photo: Private)

There is a whole lot going on up north!

Also note the op-ed about the EU’s ban on seal products and the negative consequences this has had for Greenland.

Sadly, there are no good news from the climate front.

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Kind regards,
Trine Jonassen,
News Editor, High North News