Journal of Nordregio 2007


Journal of Nordregio no 4, 2007

People and Policits of the Arctic

The world has probably never seen so many pictures of polar bears at one time as it has this autumn. The white animal of the Arctic struggling on the top of an iceberg has more or less become an international symbol of global climate change. In the longer run, it might be, however, that the pictures we saw of the Russian flag (made of titanium) being planted on the seabed, more than 4000 meters below the icecap of the North Pole, will prove to be the best indication of what will be happening there.

 

Journal of Nordregio no 4, 2007


Journal of Nordregio no 3, 2007

Second homes in the Nordic countries

In total the Nordic countries at present have a stock of some 1.8 million secondary homes. This can be compared to the total number of primary homes, i.e. dwellings, which is calculated at just over 11.6 million. The growth of secondary homes is definitively higher than the growth of the Nordic populations and is creating new challenges for planning and regional development. In a somewhat longer perspective the growth of secondary homes in the Nordic countries has been uneven. For Denmark, and to some extent also for Sweden, the most intensive construction of new ‘summer houses’, as they were called, was timed with the establishment of the modern welfare state between the late 1950s and the mid 1970s. For Norway, Finland and Iceland however construction-booms for secondary homes mostly seem to have been a phenomenon of the last 10-20 years.

Journal of Nordregio no 3, 2007


Journal of Nordregio no 2, 2007

Building Iceland's Future

Energy and environment are important themes in Icelandic politics, as is regional development. At present, there is enthusiasm in Reydarfjördur for the new Alcoa aluminium smelter which opens there next year. Whether this will last, remains however to be seen. Discussion is currently taking place in a further two communities, namely Husavik and Helguvik, in respect of similar solutions. In Dyrafjördur a debate is also taking place in relation to the site of an oil-refinery. The need to secure local jobs remains a major factor behind these types of initiatives. From an Icelandic environmental perspective both the additional smelter projects have a distinct chance of being realised. The major reason for this is that it will not be necessary to construct more large dams or hydro-power stations to supply the electricity needed to service them.

Journal of Nordregio no 2, 2007


Journal of Nordregio no 1, 2007

Energy - Where next?
Nordic regional developments

For energy producers high market demand is advantageous. For the public the same could be the case – that is – if the production, distribution or consumption of energy did not cause pollution or accidents. In many ways this summarizes the debate on energy where costs must be measured against environmental hazards. This is well known. On the other hand many of us know less about energy as a commodity. With this issue of the Journal of Nordregio we hope to provide some insight into this question. For example, for those of us living in the Nordic countries it is becoming increasingly important to understand how the Nord Pool Spot Market, the bourse for electricity, functions as this market more or less determines the price of all of the electricity we consume. What makes prices go up and down and what are the most likely future trends?

Journal of Nordregio no 1, 2007