Arctic Council 2017 – How to watch & who to follow

The Independent Barents Observer published an article online titled, “Arctic Council 2017 – How to watch & who to follow.” The article reads in part as follows;

“Over the next five days, foreign ministers, diplomats, indigenous leaders, and northern experts from pretty much every domain you can imagine, will descend on this small city of 32,000 people, turning it into an international Arctic hub.

What to watch for

Addressing climate change impacts was one of the top three U.S. priorities when they took over leadership of the international forum from Canada in 2015.

Science Diplomacy and the Arctic Council: A Catalyst for Deeper Regional Cooperation?

World Policy Blog posted an article titled, “Science Diplomacy and the Arctic Council: A Catalyst for Deeper Regional Cooperation?” The article reads in part as follows;

This week, Arctic Yearbook managing editor Heather Exner-Pirot interviews Clemens Binder, author of “Science as Catalyst for Deeper Arctic Cooperation? Science Diplomacy and the Transformation of the Arctic Council” to better understand how the strengthening of scientific cooperation, including the development of an epistemic community, can improve political cooperation and enhance regional stability. 

HEATHER EXNER-PIROT: What is science diplomacy?

Remarks by High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini at the doorstep in the margins of the High-Level Arctic event “A sustainable Arctic – innovative approaches” in Oulu, Finland

The European Union External Action published an article titled, “Remarks by High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini at the doorstep in the margins of the High-Level Arctic event “A sustainable Arctic – innovative approaches” in Oulu, Finland.” The article reads as follows;

“Check against delivery!

My gratitude and thanks to the Prime Minister [of Finland, Juha Sipilä], to the Foreign Minister [of Finland, Timo Soini], to the Mayor [of Oulu, Päivi Laajala], for their excellent hospitality but, first of all, for the work that Finland is starting to do with the Chairmanship of the Arctic Council and, in general terms, to lead the work we are doing in the European Union on the Arctic.

Canada takes part in EU meeting on Arctic policy, touts CETA

Radio Canada International published an article titled, “Canada takes part in EU meeting on Arctic policy, touts CETA.” The article reads in part as follows;

“Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland is in Finland today to participate in an European Union high-level meeting focused on Arctic environmental challenges and sustainable development. But Freeland is also using her trip to northern Europe to lobby for faster ratification of a Canada-EU free trade deal.

The two-day event in Oulu, Finland’s largest northern city, is co-hosted by Finnish Foreign Affairs Minister Timo Soini, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini, and Commissioner Karmenu Vella responsible for the Arctic policy of the EU.

China expands Belt and Road to the Arctic

Nikkei Asian Review published an article titled, “China expands Belt and Road to the Arctic.” The article reads in part as follows;

“China’s Belt and Road Initiative partly echoes the famed Ming dynasty navigator Zheng He’s seven voyages to the western seas.

Leading huge ships with a total crew of over 20,000, Zheng’s ships visited ports across the Indian Ocean, the Middle East and Africa, ‘not as conquerors with warships, guns or swords’ but as ‘friendly emissaries’ sailing treasure-loaded ships, Chinese President Xi Jinping said in the keynote speech of the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation held in Beijing on May 14.

Greenland’s Role in Changing Arctic Governance

World Policy Blog posted an article titled, “Greenland’s Role in Changing Arctic Governance.” The article reads in part as follows;

This week, former World Policy Journal editorial assistant Natasha Bluth interviews Inuuteq Holm Olsen, the first Greenlandic representative at the Embassy of Denmark to the United States, and Jessica M. Shadian, the outgoing Nansen Professor at the University of Akureyri and a distinguished senior fellow at the Bill Graham Centre for Contemporary International History, University of Toronto. In their article, “Greenland & the Arctic Council: Subnational Regions in a Time of Arctic Westphalianisation,” Olsen and Shadian examine changing Arctic governance, which they argue is best understood through the process of Westphalianization. Today, interest in the Arctic region and Arctic politics is growing among non-Arctic states at the same time that subnational actors are gaining or seeking greater participation in the Arctic Council. Olsen and Shadian look at Greenland as an example of what future intergovernmental relations hold for Arctic issues, highlighting the tension between this growing interest in the region and Greenland’s diminishing role in Arctic decision-making.

Speech by Minister Soini at the opening ceremony of Finland’s Chairmanship of the Arctic Council

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland posted an article titled, “Speech by Minister Soini at the opening ceremony of Finland’s Chairmanship of the Arctic Council.” The article reads in part as follows;

“Finland started its Chairmanship of the Arctic Council a week ago in Fairbanks, Alaska. The Chairman’s gavel was handed over to me by the US Secretary of State, Mr Rex Tillerson. I felt honoured to accept this responsibility on behalf of my country. On the way back, my main thought was that this is a great opportunity to strengthen Finland’s international position—to work together with countries that are important to us and to contribute to the advancement of globally important issues. This is a job quite suitable for the 100-year-old Finland.

Russia Looks Forward to Working Closely With Arctic Economic Council

Sputnik International published an article titled, “Russia Looks Forward to Working Closely With Arctic Economic Council.” The article reads in part as follows;

“At the last annual meeting, held on 9 May 2017, the Arctic Economic Council elected Tero Vauraste, President and CEO of the Finnish state-owned icebreaker company Arctia, as its Chairman.

‘Russia is looking forward to close and productive work with the Arctic Economic Council chaired by Finland’, Ambrosov said.

‘The head of this large shipping company has been elected to Chair the Council, and we hope that the Council will achieve great results in the development of Arctic shipping and enhancing the regulatory framework’, Ambrosov noted.

Freeland praises Tillerson’s work on Arctic Council climate change statement

Normangee Star posted an article titled, “Freeland praises Tillerson’s work on Arctic Council climate change statement.” The article reads in part as follows;

“‘After the Ministerial Meeting, its participants will adopt a declaration in which all Arctic states will be expected to reaffirm their commitment to peace, stability and cooperation in the Arctic’. High-level officials from the world’s eight Arctic n. The Trump administration is in turmoil over whether to fulfill the president’s campaign pledge to pull out of a historic worldwide agreement to address climate change, and has postponed a decision at least until late this month.

Arctic Mayors Group Convenes First Meeting, Issues ‘Pan-Arctic Cooperation’ Declaration

KUAC published an article titled, “Arctic Mayors Group Convenes First Meeting, Issues ‘Pan-Arctic Cooperation’ Declaration.” The article reads as follows;

“While top diplomats from eight circumpolar nations gathered in Fairbanks last week for national-level meetings related to the biennial Arctic Council ministerial, 11 local-government officials from around the region got together on the other side of town  to share ideas on how they all can better serve their communities.

‘We want to make sure that we can unify as a voice that can be heard more in the national and international discussions about the Arctic’, says Christin Kristofferson, former mayor of the Norwegian community of Longyearbyen. She served as a moderator and facilitator of the Arctic Mayors Roundtable meeting held May 11th at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.