SHARE
COPY LINK

ENVIRONMENT

Atlantic salmon added to Norwegian list of threatened animals 

The Atlantic salmon, synonymous with Norway, has been added to a list of species that are endangered or threatened by extinction.

Pictured is an Atlantic salmon.
The Atlantic salmon, pictured, has been added to a list of species that are nearly engendered, endangered or extinct. Photo by William W. Hartley / USFWS / AFP

The wild Atlantic salmon has been added to the ‘red list’, a database of threatened, endangered and extinct species in Norway, for the first time after its population halved over the past 40 years.

The fish, an icon of Norway depicted on petroglyphs and featured heavily in Norse mythology, has been classified as “near threatened” on the red list, which is complied by the Species Data Bank, due to declining stocks. 

“The main reason the species is on the red list is that we have seen a decline,” Snorre Henriksen, senior advisor at the Species Data Bank, explained to public broadcaster NRK. 

Lice and diseases spread by escaped farmed salmon are considered the biggest reason for declining salmon stocks in Norway, according to the species monitor.

“Infections related to salmon farming are also a significant threat,” the Species Data Bank also wrote in its database entry on Atlantic salmon.

Between 1983 and 2019, the number of adult salmon returning from sea to spawning pools decreased by 51 percent. 

Another animal that conjures images of the Nordics, reindeer, is also set to be added to the red list. Encroachment onto reindeer habitats is seen as the factor affecting the species the most.

READ ALSO: Norwegian salmon farming moves to cleaner indoor waters

Henriksen said that the Species Data Bank has noticed climate change was beginning to threaten many species. 

“The big change is that many species are threatened by climate change. So it is a rather dramatic change since the last time (the list was updated),” the advisor said. 

In total, 333 species were added to the list, and 309 were removed. There are 2,752 species on the list, which has been updated for the first time since 2015. 

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.

ENVIRONMENT

Norway rules out 2022 oil licences in unexplored areas

Norway will not grant new oil exploration licences in virgin or little-explored areas in 2022 under a political compromise on Monday that hands a modest  victory to opponents of fossil fuels.

Norway rules out 2022 oil licences in unexplored areas
A photo taken on August 30, 2021 shows the Petroleum Museum in Stavanger, Norway, built to show the history of Norway's oil exploration. Norway is the largest producer of hydrocarbons in Western Europe. In the face of the climate emergency, voices are being raised to abandon fossil fuels for good. Petter BERNTSEN / AFP

The Scandinavian country’s governing centre-left coalition supports continuing oil and gas activities but does not have a parliamentary majority, making it reliant on socialist MPs who prioritise green issues.

As part of a compromise on the draft 2022 budget, three parties agreed on Monday that Norway — Western Europe’s largest hydrocarbon producer — would not hold a 26th so-called “ordinary” concession round next year.

This mechanism has allowed oil companies to apply for exploration in previously unexplored areas of the Norwegian continental shelf since 1965.

But the deal does not rule out awarding oil licences in already heavily exploited areas.

Since the North Sea has been extensively explored, the agreement mainly concerns the Barents Sea in the Arctic

The oil industry was a major issue in legislative elections in September, indicating Norway’s growing difficulties in reconciling environmental concerns with exploiting energy resources.

In the 25th concession round in early 2021, only seven oil companies, including Equinor, Shell and Lundin, applied — the lowest number since at least 1978 according to local media.

SHOW COMMENTS