September 4, 2009

The Coming Cold War in the Arctic

Roger Howard, The Times

AP Photo

The drastic climatic changes in the Arctic, viewed first-hand this week by an ‘alarmed’ UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, are threatening to unleash not only environmental catastrophe on the rest of the world but a furious political struggle between competing regional governments.

The Arctic Five - the US, Russia, Norway, Canada and Denmark (Greenland) - are scrambling to secure territorial rights to disputed and hitherto unclaimed parts of the world’s last great wilderness. This is partly because the retreat of local sea ice is opening up to exploitation what many leading experts think could be massive reserves of petroleum- even as much as 13% of the world’s undiscovered oil and 30% of its undiscovered natural gas.

Exploiting many of...

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TAGGED: Climate Change, Norway, Denmark, Greenland, United States, Canada, Russia, Arctic Ocean, Arctic Circle

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