Arctic Melting Leaves Countries Sparring

– Reach out and place your finger on the world’s pulse. It’s not good, what you’ll find there. The pulse is rapid and unstable. Systemic instability is spreading.

– So, how far down this road are we? Well, consider, as my friend John pointed out, that this entire article about the growing tension in the Arctic over seabed resources doesn’t even mention, other than tangentially, why the seabed is opening up for exploitation. Global warming and its consequences are becoming such an accepted part of our world that an entire article like this can be written without more than a passing mention of the on going global climate crises.

– Given that this is so, can we really still hope that mankind is going to act to deal with climate change? I don’t think so. I think we’re all going to have to grin and bear the coming chaos because, as a species, we can’t muster the grit it would take to deal with it. And the deep irony is that the consequences of not dealing with it will be far worse than the consequences of dealing with it would be.  We are indeed a short-sighted species.

Canada, Russia, Greenland Debate Ownership of Northwest Passage, Oil Fields

The reports from the world’s scientists depict the Arctic sea ice cap now shrunk to its smallest size in history — the great melting uncovering vast stretches of the Arctic Ocean and opening up a northwest shipping lane mariners have been dreaming about since Christopher Columbus discovered America.

The reports from the world’s diplomats and military planners say there’s a new theater of war — at least cold war — where tensions are heating up because the world is.

Watch a video of Bill Blakemore’s tour of the ice wonders of Greenland here.

In the Arctic these days, there are Danish commando dog-sled patrols guarding northern Greenland.

While U.S. icebreakers are mapping the seabed, Russian subs are planting their flag on the same seabed.

And the Canadian navy is expanding its Arctic patrols, running new military exercises, ordering six new military patrol ships, while the Canadian government is building up two Arctic military bases.

“As there was in the American West in the 1800s, there’s a great land grab going on, but most of the land is at the bottom of the seafloor,” Brookings Institution scholar William Antholis said.

Under that seafloor lie giant, but largely unexplored, oil and gas fields. Over it are new, warm-water fisheries, all now accessible as ice melts away.


– research thx to John P.

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