September 03, 2011
Pre-Arctic: Spitsbergen, Longyearbyen , Norway
Longyearbyen is the largest settlement on Svalbard. It has about 1,700 inhabitants, most of them Norwegians and some Russians. Located in the Advent Fjord at the entrance of the Advent Valley, this community has an infrastructure fit for a much larger city.
There are 4 inhabited settlements and some scientific stations. Barentsburg, a Russian coal mining settlement, has ca. 850 inhabitants. Sveagruva, the functional Norwegian mine has around 100 inhabitants and Ny Ålesund, a scientific settlement has between 30 and 150 inhabitants, depending on the season.
All settlements are found on the west coast, the part of Spitsbergen with the mildest climate due to the warm Gulf Current.