Web Bytes from the Arctic Circle

From the Web: Global Awareness

How climate change and advancing commercial exploitation will affect Finland’s indigenous Sami people; a Norwegian town intends to abolish timekeeping.

Fighting for Lapland

As climate change affects the livelihoods of Finland’s indigenous Sami people, a proposed new Arctic railway, forestry and mining could change Lapland forever. Climate change affects the Arctic more than any other part of the Earth, and it’s been damaging reindeer-herding and fishing – the traditional livelihoods of the indigenous Sami people.

Produced by Erika Benke. Camera: Antti J. Leinonen – 23 June 2019 on BBC,  bbc.com


Norwegian city in the Arctic Circle wants to abolish time

Every day, the Earth rotates. The Sun appears on the horizon in the morning, and then some time later, it sets. We’ve built our lives and societies around this periodicity, with days that are divided into hours, minutes and seconds, all kept track of by clocks.

People around a clock

But in some places on Earth, the Sun rises only once per year, and sets once per year. With their concept of a day already so estranged from the rest of the world’s, one Arctic population started thinking: What if we ditched the concept of time altogether?

That’s the idea of Norwegian Kjell Ove Hveding, who lives north of the Arctic Circle in a town called Sommarøy. The idea has since taken off, and has been featured by Norway’s state news agency and at least one of the country’s large national newspapers.

This week, Hveding met with his local member of parliament to hand over a petition to get rid of time in the town. The driving motivator, it seems, is to make Sommarøy a place where people can do whatever they want, whenever they want.

“You have to go to work, and even after work, the clock takes up your time,” Hveding told Gizmodo. “I have to do this, I have to do that. My experience is that [people] have forgotten how to be impulsive, to decide that the weather is good, the Sun is shining, I can just live.” Even if it’s 3:00am.

By Ryan F. Mandelbaum – 16 June 2019 on SOTT, sott.net

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