The Svalbard Global Seed Vault

3 October 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Environment, General, Intelligent Buildings

Mountain cutaway © Global Crop Diversity Trust

Mountain cutaway © Global Crop Diversity Trust

The Svalbard Global Seed Vault is a secure seedbank located on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen near the town of Longyearbyen in the remote Arctic Svalbard archipelago, about 1,300 kilometres (810 mi) from the North Pole. The facility preserves a wide variety of plant seeds in an underground cavern. The seeds are duplicate samples, or “spare” copies, of seeds held in gene banks worldwide. The seed vault is an attempt to provide insurance against the loss of seeds in genebanks, as well as a refuge for seeds in the case of large-scale regional or global crises. The seed vault is managed under terms spelled out in a tripartite agreement between the Norwegian government, the Global Crop Diversity Trust (GCDT) and the Nordic Genetic Resource Center (NordGen).   read more…

The Lake Lucerne in Switzerland

17 September 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Lake Lucerne from Mount Pilatus © Ttrainer

Lake Lucerne from Mount Pilatus © Ttrainer

Lake Lucerne (“Lake of the Four Forested Cantons“) is a lake in central Switzerland and the fourth largest in the country.   read more…

Norway’s Selling a Super Villain Starter Set

1 September 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, House of the Month

Olavsvern Naval Submarine Base

Olavsvern Naval Submarine Base

You can’t very well take over the world from your parent’s basement, now can you? No, a proper arch-nemesis needs a sufficiently intimidating hidden base. Luckily, Norway is selling off its defunct Olavsvern Naval Submarine Base for a $17.5 million pittance.   read more…

Fredrikstad in the Østfold province

29 June 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Old town © visitnorway.com

Old town © visitnorway.com

Fredrikstad (literally Fredrik’s Town) is a city and municipality in Østfold county, Norway. The administrative centre of the municipality is the city of Fredrikstad.   read more…

Bern, capital of Switzerland

18 June 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage

The Zytglogge clock tower and the citys medieval covered shopping promenades © Daniel Schwen

The Zytglogge clock tower and the citys medieval covered shopping promenades © Daniel Schwen

The city of Bern or Berne is the Bundesstadt (federal city, de facto capital) of Switzerland, and, with a population of 133,920, the fourth most populous city in Switzerland. The Bern agglomeration, which includes 43 municipalities, has a population of 349,000. The metropolitan area had a population of 660,000 in 2000. Bern is also the capital of the Canton of Bern, the second most populous of Switzerland’s cantons.   read more…

Nyon on Lake Geneva

15 June 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Nyon © Chin tin tin

Nyon © Chin tin tin

Nyon is a municipality in the district of Nyon in the canton of Vaud in Switzerland. It is located some 25 kilometers north east of Geneva’s city centre, and since the 1970s it has become part of the Geneva metropolitan area. It lies on the shores of Lake Geneva, and is the seat of the district of Nyon. The town has (as of December 2010) a population of 18,728. It is connected to the rest of Switzerland by way of the Route Suisse, the A1 Motorway and the railways of the Arc Lémanique.   read more…

Svolvær on the Lofoten

31 May 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Svolvær Harbour © Ernmuhl

Svolvær Harbour © Ernmuhl

Svolvær is the administrative centre of Vågan Municipality (9,200 inhabitants) in the Nordland County in Lofoten. The town itself has a population of 4,000.   read more…

Theme Week Swiss – Basel, on the tri-border area of Switzerland, Germany and France

15 May 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

The Rhine river © Norbert Aepli

The Rhine river © Norbert Aepli

Basel or Basle is Switzerland’s third most populous city with about 166,000 inhabitants. Located where the Swiss, French and German borders meet, Basel also has suburbs in France and Germany. With 830,000 inhabitants in the tri-national urban agglomeration as of 2004, Basel is Switzerland’s second-largest urban area.   read more…

Crans-Montana in the Valais Alps

26 April 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Lac Moubra © Johnw

Lac Moubra © Johnw

Crans-Montana is a ski resort in western Switzerland, in the heart of the Swiss Alps in the canton of Valais. It is located on a plateau above Sierre at an elevation of about 1500 m (4921 ft) above sea level, allowing good view over the Valais Alps and Weisshorn in particular. The resort is a fusion of the two centers of Crans and Montana and belongs to 6 municipalities (Chermignon, Icogne, Lens, Mollens, Montana and Randogne).   read more…

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