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View Diary: White House Meeting on Arctic Media Blackout (143 comments)

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  •  Slow to act on envrmnt, quick to stake claims... (7+ / 0-)

    on Arctic's oil, gas and mineral wealth. As the US and other nations slow walk addressing the potential environmental disasters of arctic melting, they are quick to engage in "Ice Wars" to claim the resources uncovered as the ice melts:

    The recession of the sea ice and the reduction in permafrost -- combined with advances in technology -- have allowed access to oil, mineral and natural gas deposits that were previously trapped in the ice.

    The abundance of these valuable resources and the opportunity to exploit them has created a gold rush-like scramble in the high north, with fierce competition to determine which countries have the right to access the riches of the Arctic.

    This competition has brought in its wake a host of naval and military activities that the Arctic hasn't seen since the end of the Cold War.

    As nations scramble to stake a claim on the arctic's natural resources they are far less energized to take meaningful action to lessen the negative environmental impacts:
    (Sept. 2010) Nations laid out their claims to territory in the polar North yesterday and the vast untapped mineral wealth that lies under the Arctic Ocean.

    Shrinking polar ice has opened up new opportunities, with five nationsRussia, Canada, Denmark, Norway and the US – claiming jurisdiction over parts of the polar region which could contain as much of one quarter of the world's undiscovered reserves of oil and gas.</blockquote>

    In addition to this, nations and corporations are eying the potentials of Opening up the Northwest Passage

    A study suggests that global warming is opening up a first-time chance to cruise through the Northwest Passage, which could translate into big savings in time and money for shippers.
    And, though nations have to understand that:  
    There will certainly be many more negative effects than positive ones from climate change.
    They don't seem to be working as hard to try to mitigate the negative effects as they are to claim the riches and consider the benefits of new waterways:
    But most shipping routes across the Arctic Ocean — which have been ice-covered and impassable since humans invented ships millenniums ago — could be open to ships for the first time by midcentury, thanks to climate change, a new study suggests.

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