By having an office in Longyearbyen, the IMR hopes to strengthen its presence in Svalbard, says IMR research director Harald Loeng. Climate change means that the Arctic Ocean is an increasingly important element in the management of the ecosystems, according to him.
“The IMR is the largest polar research institute in Norway and it is important for us to have a close and fruitful cooperation with UNIS”, Loeng says in a press release.
UNIS students gain knowledge about the Arctic oceans within a number of fields. “They study oceanography, marine biology and fish biology – all important fields for the IMR. With an office in Longyearbyen, it will be easier for the IMR scientists to contribute to the teaching at UNIS, in addition to the added benefits of research cooperation and data exchange. We expect that closer cooperation with UNIS will result in a better understanding of the polar marine ecosystem”, says Loeng.
UNIS Director Ole Arve Misund believes the IMR office will open up possibilities of developing new courses for his students:
“We see possibilities in Arctic biology, especially within ecosystem-based research, management and industry”.
The strengthened cooperation will ensure UNIS student participation in the IMR scientific cruises in Arctic waters.
MURMANSK: Ecological groups gathered on Kola Peninsula fear that Barents nature will be the looser after Oslo decided to call off the environmental minister’s Moscow meeting in response to Russia’s annexation of Crimea.
TROMSØ: Since the first five specimens of snow crab were found in the Barents Sea in 1996, the population has exploded. There is now ten times as much snow crab than king crab in the area, and scientists are just starting to find out how this new species has adopted to life in the Barents Sea.
The current situation in Ukraine makes cross-border cooperation with the neighboring countries even more important, Barents Secretariat leader Rune Rafaelsen says. At the same time, Norway has joined NATO’s condemnation of Russia’s military escalation on the Crimea peninsula.
Board member Amund Trellevik in the press network fears entry-denial of Kremlin’s controversial propaganda-journalist Dmitry Kiselyov could be retaliated by refusing Norwegian journalists access to Russia.