Tag Archives: Norway

Canada is good at hockey, Norway builds amazing tunnels

Norway is building the first shipping tunnel

At 45m high (148ft) and 36m (118ft) wide, the 1.7km (one mile) long Stad Ship Tunnel will be the only one of its kind – a passage through solid rock able to accommodate 16,000 tonne freight and passenger ships.

Ship canals have long been used to make journeys more direct and safer but the Stad peninsula is a mountainous divide, peaking at 645m, between the Norwegian Sea to the north and the North Sea to the south.

Norway has a reputation as the world-leader in tunnelling. They have already achieved the world’s longest road tunnel.

While it will be the first proper ship tunnel, the engineering behind it will not involve radical innovation.

“It isn’t an unheard of challenge, it involves building a cofferdam [a watertight enclosure] at either end to keep the water out until excavation is complete,” explains Robert Benaim, Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering.

Instead of carving out a slice of the landscape for a canal, engineers will drill and blast through the rock at sea level before removing the dams so the sea can flood a 12m (39ft) deep channel for ships to travel in.

A Life on Hold

An intimate portrait of Omar, a 17 year old stranded in a refugee camp since the 2011 war in Libya.  The film offers a unique perspective of one person amongst thousands waiting for a chance to start their life again in a safe country.

When war broke out earlier this year in Libya, thousands of refugees from countries such as Somalia, Sudan, and Eritrea, who were living in or transiting through the country at the time, were forced to flee for their lives yet again. They are now waiting in refugee camps along the Tunisian and Egyptian borders – unable to return home due to war or persecution, unable to return to Libya due to ongoing violence and discrimination, and unable to stay in Tunisia or Egypt, countries both undergoing their own political upheavals.

A fantastic short film.

North

Svalbard is an archipelago high within the Arctic Circle. The largest of its islands is called Spitsbergen, meaning “pointed mountains.” In 1920 a treaty known as the Svalbard Act was signed by several nations recognizing Norwegian sovereignty over the islands, and declaring the whole region a demilitarized zone. This is a short film about how Svalbard, over the course of recent history, became increasingly linked to developments in climate science, and climate change.