Norway mulls broadband coverage in Arctic

Norway mulls broadband coverage in Arctic
FILE - In this July 21, 2011 file photo, an iceberg floats in the sea near Qeqertarsuaq, Disko Island, Greenland. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley, File)
STAVANGER, Norway (AP) — Norway may provide high-speed Internet in one of the few places on Earth where it's not available: the Arctic.

The Norwegian Space Center has teamed up with Telenor Satellite Broadcasting to assess the feasibility of a new satellite system covering northern areas outside the reach of current geostationary communications satellites.

Space center director Bo Andersen on Thursday told The Associated Press the system could be in place in the early 2020s if it gets the necessary funding from private and public sources. The estimated cost is 2-4 billion kroner ($330 million-$650 million).

Demand for high-speed Internet in the Arctic is expected to grow as shipping, fishing and oil companies move north amid warming temperatures and melting ice.

Canada's space agency has been studying a similar system.