Welcome to Longyearbyen (literally the city of the long year), a town that's so pro-life that nobody is permitted to die. In fact, it's illegal for anyone to die in this peaceful little Norwegian town, and should anyone break that law they'll find that they wont be buried as the town's graveyard stopped taking bodies over seventy years ago. A strange effect of the cold weather there means that bodies don't decompose, being preserved in permafrost along with any diseases they may have had. Anyone that does take a walk on the wild side of the law and passes away has their body shipped to another part of the country to be buried.

Strangely this isn't the only pro-life thing about the town. In fact the permafrost problem with dead bodies has proven to be invaluable in maintaining humankind should we face some horrific disaster. Situated near Longyearbyen
is the "Doomsday Vault", an arctic safe capable of storing and preserving millions of seeds. The "Doomsday Vault" is one of many contingency plans spread around the world to help humankind survive something akin to a massive meteor hit or nuclear war. Despite this, the vault is mostly used to preserve gene integrity in plantlife, with seeds taken whenever such genetic integrity is threatened.

Whenever anyone says that "life goes on" I always spare a thought for the people of Longyearbyen. For them it's not just a platitude; it's the law.


31 thoughts on “Longyearbyen

  1. I'd heard of the Global Seed Vault before but not Longyearbyen. :up:I don't suppose you know what the penalty is for breaking the "do not die in the town" law? šŸ˜€

  2. Cool town! I've never heard of that city, but I guessed it was either Norwegian or Danish because of the "byen" in the name. šŸ˜€

  3. *crawls into suitcase… makes a few breathing holes… curls up*I'm ready. Now, don't toss the suitcase around. I get travel sick easily! šŸ˜‰

  4. *watches the tree grow where the suitcase was planted and the fruit grow into new Furies who bow to their creator*Now then…*turns attention to other suitcase*

  5. *Smells scorched fur* I wonder what it would take to get indemnity from that law? Grave robbing must be a very serious crime there considering the potential health risks. :left: .

  6. Moe, worse. I have the means to send someone to a parallel universe where everyone is Barry Manilow and sings constantly.Tilla, it's actually the remote control to my Copacabana Machine. I was just telling Moe about it. Have a demonstration.*pushes the button*

  7. Apparently not. They all get shipped out. You'd think they could use the ashes to grit the streets a little wouldn't you.

  8. Cool :D.Do you know there are lots of polar bears roaming the streets in Longyearbyen too? The preservation thing is quite amazing. People buried on the cemetary in Longyearbyen lie under the permafrost. Among them are people who died of the Spanish Disease in 1918. 10 years ago, scientists opened their graves with hopes to be able to reconstruct the virus.ps, I don't know if I'd say it's close to Denmark. It's hardly even close to the Norwegian mainland :p.

  9. They have pretty strong legislations regarding interacting with polar bears. For instance, you must carry a rifle when you travel outside inhabited areas. And you can't just leave it as you wish – you have to apply with Sysselmannen (the Govenor on Svalbard).

  10. I read about the polar bears while trying to find out the name of the town. Seems kinda unfair that it's illegal to die yet white death roams the streets regularly.

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