Arctic land grabs – from King Arthur to Putin

Tags: Joe Smith

The Argo buoy is launched – might seem banal to scientists, but it really helps the rest of us to visualise science as a practice rather than a set of reported results. Think the winning entry for naming it was ‘Disko(very) Bob’, crafted by Jarvis Cocker.

Climate change is just one of the reasons why there is more oceanography and geology going on in the region. Sovereign states in the region are investing a good deal in trying to establish the best evidence to support resource claims. There has been a flurry of news stories over the last year or so about a scramble for Arctic resources by the countries of the region. The planting of a Russian flag by a mini-sub on the seabed at the North Pole was interpreted in reports around the world as a form of land grab. In practical terms it was meaningless and there are due legal processes for working out sovereign rights over the seabed. The reporting was a little shrill (that was the point for Putin I guess, above all domestically). But there will be jockeying for position for the mineral resources that will become more easily accessible as higher temperatures melt the sea ice.

Read on and more of Joe’s posts, and his colleagues’ responses, on the Science, Technology and Nature Blog.

One Comment

  1. jon.plowman

    Posted Monday 6 Oct at 12:53 | Permalink

    i have followed the trip day by day on my computer in an energy wasting office in West London and the clarity of the writing and the photographs have been inspirational. One day we will manage something for the planet here and your words about optimism being more useful than pessimism seems to me absolutely why comedy should be involved. It says we can. I hope your trip has been useful to you and the others there it has certainly been enlightening and inspiring this end.
    Jon P