China Can Influence Arctic Council Agenda: Danish Minister Lidegaard

Danish foreign minister says talks on development of region to be led by countries with territory there, but participation of others is welcome

By Teddy Ng

South China Morning Post

China could influence the formulation of a multilateral framework on the development of the Arctic as it increased its presence in the region, a senior Danish official said.

Danish Foreign Minister Martin Lidegaard said negotiations concerning the development of the Arctic would mainly be directed by countries that hold territory in the region but that the participation of other nations was welcome.

Helping the Arctic Council Find Its True North

Priorities for Secretary Kerry as He Prepares to Take on the Chairmanship of the Arctic Council

By Cathleen Kelly, Michael Conathan, and Vikram Singh

Center for American Progress

For millennia, the Arctic has lain beneath a blanket of ice and snow—an ocean locked out of all interaction with the rest of the world, save subsea currents and icebreaking marine mammals. Yet in recent decades, rapid declines in ice coverage due to global climate change have begun to unlock what may be the world’s last undisturbed vault of natural resources, potentially opening trade routes dreamt of by explorers since the late 15th century. The opening of the Arctic has already begun to stimulate economic development, and the changes at the top of the world present massive global challenges.

NOAA Releases Arctic Action Plan


The Maritime Executive

Earlier this year, President Obama released a plan for moving forward on his national strategy to advance U.S. security and stewardship interests in the Arctic. In keeping with the goals and tenets of his strategy, NOAA has unveiled its Arctic Action Plan—a document that provides NOAA scientists, stakeholders and partners a roadmap to make shared progress in monitoring, understanding, and protecting this vast, valuable, and vulnerable region

Designing an Effective European Arctic Strategy

By Edward Mortimer

The International Relations and Security Network

The promise of new shipping routes and access to natural resources continues to attract external players to the Arctic. While states such as Singapore have successfully acquired permanent observer status in the Arctic Council (AC), the European Union (EU) has historically been far less successful in contributing to or securing a voice in Arctic governance. This problem is eroding away, however. All Brussels has to do is play to its strengths and continue focusing on ‘small target’ goals that can be achieved through existing political structures.

Arctic Maritime and Security Forum – Cooperation 66° North

8 – 9 May 2014

Tromsø, Norway

Hosted by: The K.G. Jebsen Centre for the Law of the Sea

University of Tromsø (The Arctic University of Norway)

Cooperation 66 Degrees North is a two-day Arctic maritime and security forum being held in Tromsø, Norway 8-9 May 2014. It is partly funded by the Norwegian Barents Secretariat and designed to enhance communication, cooperation, and collaboration across political, economic, and security sectors throughout the circumpolar region and beyond. In particular, it focuses on fostering frank discourse about security, safety, and operational/legal challenges in the maritime and offshore sectors of the High North.

U.S. Partners With Iceland on Creating Strong Arctic Strategy and Defense Policy Going Forward

By Robert Tilford


On April 11, 2014 Deputy Secretary of Defense Spokesman James Swartout provided the following readout of Acting Deputy Secretary of Defense Christine Fox’s Meeting with Iceland’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Gunnar Sveinsson:

“Acting Deputy Secretary of Defense Christine Fox met with Iceland’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Gunnar Sveinsson at the Pentagon today. At the beginning of the meeting, Sveinsson was welcomed to the Pentagon by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel. Hagel highlighted the similarities between U.S. and Icelandic priorities for keeping the Arctic region stable and secure, and stated that he looks forward to seeing Sveinsson again at future North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Defense Ministerials.

Arctic Rhetoric

By Erica Dingman

The World Policy Institute

Despite ongoing cooperation between Arctic nations – Canada, Denmark (Greenland), Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Russia, and the United States– mainstream rhetoric often implies Arctic stakeholders are teetering on the brink of conflict. To a great extent, this sentiment is reflected in mass media and political banter, inflaming the passions of audiences. This is true, not only in the U.S. but also elsewhere, evidenced in the mass media reporting of other Arctic nations and beyond.

The Norwegian Juggernaut

By Robet Smol

National Post

There is a widespread assumption currently pervading our government and the public that Canada has done all it can to defend the Arctic. But just how far have we gone in terms of Arctic defence and sovereignty protection? It’s instructive to compare our posture and preparedness with those of our allies. And not big military powers, such as the United States, but rather smaller allied countries such as Norway, which also share the Arctic with us.

Get ready to be embarrassed, Canada.

Are We An Arctic Nation?

By Annie Passarello

The Anchorage Press

The first time I heard someone raise the question of whether or not the U.S. is an Arctic nation was during a meeting with the Finnish Ambassador to the U.S., the Hon. Ritva Koukku-Ronde. Ambassador Koukku-Ronde and her staff briefly visited with UAA students, faculty and staff Feb 28.  She was very interested in hearing from those in attendance about issues related to changing Arctic conditions and ways and in which Finland could enhance its relationship with Alaska and the U.S.

Arctic Economic Council Formed

Stories In The News

At the Senior Arctic Officials meeting in Yellowknife on March 26th, the Arctic Council agreed to the creation of the Arctic Economic Council.

According to a news release, the Arctic Economic Council (AEC) will strive to foster sustainable economic development (with an emphasis on participation from indigenous businesses) while protecting the Arctic environment; engage in more robust circumpolar cooperation; and, through periodic reports and proposals, provide a business perspective to the Arctic Council’s work.

The Alaska Arctic Policy Commission (AAPC) Co-Chairs Senator Lesil McGuire and Representative Bob Herron are supportive of the Arctic Economic Council’s creation.