Svalbard (GPS: 78 00 N, 20 00 E) is located in Northern Europe, islands between the Arctic Ocean, Barents Sea, Greenland Sea, and the Norwegian Sea, north of Norway. The country’s area measurements are total: 62,045 sq km; land: 62,045 sq km, water: 0 sq km. This sovereign state is slightly smaller than West Virginia. The total irrigated land is N/A.
One of the important features of Svalbard: Northernmost part of the Kingdom of Norway. It consists of nine main islands. Glaciers and snowfields cover 60% of the total area. Spitsbergen Island is the Svalbard Global Seed Vault site, a seed repository established by the Global Crop Diversity Trust and the Norwegian Government.
It’s significant, and simultaneously, the principal city, Longyearbyen’s GPS coordinates are 78 13 N 15 38 E. Longyearbyen’s local time is 6 hours ahead of Washington DC during Standard Time. The capital’s time difference: UTC+1, note; Daylight saving time: +1hr begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October.
Google Maps Svalbard and Longyearbyen, Arctic Region
About Svalbard in detail
Flag of Svalbard
Map of Svalbard
Norse explorers may have first discovered the archipelago in the 12th century; The islands served as an international whaling base during the 17th and 18th centuries. The treaty internationally recognized Norway’s sovereignty in 1920, and five years later, it officially took over the territory. In the 20th-century, coal mining started, and today a Norwegian and a Russian company are still functioning. Travel between the settlements is accomplished with snowmobiles, aircraft, and boats.
Svalbard’s names conventional long form: none, conventional short form: Svalbard (sometimes referred to as Spitsbergen, the largest island in the archipelago), etymology: 12th-century Norse accounts speak of the discovery of a “Svalbard” – literally “cold shores” – but they may have referred to Jan Mayen island or eastern Greenland; the archipelago was traditionally known as Spitsbergen, but Norway renamed it Svalbard in the 1920s when it assumed sovereignty of the islands.
Svalbard’s terrain is typically rugged mountains; much of the upland areas are ice covered; west coast clear of ice about half the year; fjords along the west and north coasts. The country’s mean elevation: N/A, elevation extremes; lowest point: Arctic Ocean 0 m, highest point: Newtontoppen 1,717 m.
The country’s general climate is arctic, tempered by warm North Atlantic Current: cool summers, cold winters: North Atlantic Current flows along west and north coasts of Spitsbergen, keeping water open and navigable most of the year.
The total number of border countries is 0; none are the neighboring nations with the indicated border lengths. Svalbard’s coastline is 3,587 km, while its marital claims are: territorial sea: 4 nautical miles, exclusive fishing zone: 200 nautical miles unilaterally claimed by Norway but not recognized by Russia. Waterways: N/A. Land use: agricultural land: 0%; arable land 0%; permanent crops 0%; permanent pasture 0%; forest: 0%; other: 100% (2011 estimate).
The population in Svalbard 2,583 (July 2017 estimate), N/A, major urban area’s population: N/A, while Svalbard has a small population primarily concentrated on the island Spitsbergen in a handful of settlements on the south side of the Isfjorden, with Longyearbyen being the largest. Their spoken languages are Norwegian, Russian. The main religions in Svalbard are N/A. The nation uses the laws of Norway where applicable apply; only the laws of Norway made explicitly applicable to Svalbard have an effect there; the Svalbard Act and the Svalbard Environmental Protection Act, and certain regulations, apply only to Svalbard; the Spitsbergen Treaty and the Svalbard Treaty grants certain rights to citizens and corporations of signatory nations. It is a(n) N/A, National holiday(s) N/A.
Economic overview for the country: Coal mining, tourism, and international research are Svalbard’s major industries. Coal mining has historically been the dominant economic activity. The Spitzbergen Treaty of 9 February 1920 gives the 45 countries that have ratified the treaty equal rights to exploit mineral deposits, subject to Norwegian regulation. Although the US, UK, Dutch, and Swedish coal companies have mined in the past, the only companies engaging in this are Norwegian and Russian. Low coal prices have forced the Norwegian coal company, Store Norske Spitsbergen Kulkompani, to close one of its two mines and considerably reduce the other’s activity. Since the 1990s, the tourism and hospitality industry has overgrown, and Svalbard now receives 60,000 visitors annually. The settlements on Svalbard were established as company towns, and at their height in the 1950s, the Norwegian state-owned coal company supported nearly 1,000 jobs. Today, only about 300 people work in the mining industry. Goods such as alcohol, tobacco, and vehicles, typically highly taxed on mainland Norway, are considerably cheaper in Svalbard than the Norwegian Government to entice more people to live on the Arctic archipelago. By law, Norway collects only enough taxes to pay for the local government’s needs; None of the tax proceeds go to the central government.
Natural resources of Svalbard: coal, iron ore, copper, zinc, phosphate, wildlife, fish.
Main export partners for Svalbard, Arctic Region, are N/A for N/A, while the main import partners for the country are: N/A for N/A.
When you visit this country in Arctic Region, consider the natural hazards in Svalbard: Ice floes often block the entrance to Bellsund (a transit point for coal export) on the west coast and occasionally make parts of the northeastern coast inaccessible to maritime traffic, while infectious diseases are N/A. Also, note that Svalbard faces the following environmental issues: Ice floes are a maritime hazard, Past exploitation of mammal species (whale, seal, walrus, and polar bear) severely depleted the populations, but a gradual recovery seems to be occurring.
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