In spite of Norway’s bid to step up its military presence in the High North, the country’s only submarine base north of the Polar Circle was closed in 2009. The abandoned naval base has been for sale since January 2011, but has only been on Norway’s most popular open market web site for a couple of weeks.
The base consists of 13.500 square meters of buildings and a 25.000 square meter mountain plant, including a large dock and a deep-water berth. Included in the facilities are a fuel depot, a tunnel system and emergency power system. The facility is designed to withstand a nuclear attack.
The base has through the years been upgraded for NOK 1 billion (app €126.8 mill) – most of it NATO-funding.
Russia plans to resume testing of the submarine-launched ballistic missile Bulava this summer. The country’s two newest strategic nuclear-powered submarines will start trials as soon as the ice conditions in the White Sea will allow.
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.
More than 900 reindeer die of hunger on the Russian Arctic island of Kolguyev following a critical lack of available local pasturelands. The reindeer stocks in the area are too badly managed, regional authorities admit.
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.