The Contribution of Space Technologies to Arctic Policy Priorities

appropriate policies and legislation, management actions, and public education; and to cooperate internationally c oncerning transboundary wetlands, shared wetland systems, shared species, and development projects that may affect wetlands. Parties also endeavour through management to increase waterfowl populations on appropriate wetlands. yy The UnitedNations Convention on the Lawof the Sea (UNCLOS) contains an entire section dedicated to the protection and preservation of the marine environment (Part XII), and the treaty also contains numerous references to environmental duties and obligations throughout its many articles. Coastal states are required to maintain the existing fish stock and protect it from over-exploitation in their exclusive economic zone, including special provisions for straddling stocks and migratory species, and all nations have a duty to take measures to ensure the conservation of living resources on the high seas. yy The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples states that Indigenous peoples have the right to the conservation and protection of the environment and the productive capacity of their lands or territories and resources. It proposes that States establish and implement assistance programs for indigenous peoples for such conservation and protection, without discrimination. The applications of EO for environmental protection are primarily the detection and monitoring of environmental contaminants and the monitoring of regulatory compliance. In the Arctic context, the contaminants of most interest are oil and chemical spills, mining tailings, industrial, commercial, and residential refuse, etc. EO possesses significant potential for the monitoring and tracking of atmospheric pollution and trace gases. This is of particular relevance to the Arctic, which receives contaminant deposits via the long range transport of pollutants from southern latitudes. EO is also useful for investigating regulatory compliance such as, for example, the environmental remediation and reforestation of mining sites and the monitoring of fisheries for illegal fishing. The full GMES space infrastructure (i.e., Sentinel-1 to Sentinel-4) will be critical in delivering a complete suite of services and applications related to environmental protection. 5.4.3 Role of Satellite Systems EARTH OBSERVATION SYSTEMS (Impact Medium)

the significant impact climate change may have on infrastructure in the Arctic. Also of key importance is the effective management of energy supply and energy networks. 6.1 Resource Development 6.1.1 Overview Having been assessed as one of the world’s last frontiers for both renewable and non-renewable resource development, there is a growing global interest in the region’s oil and gas and mineral wealth. Much of this potential has yet to be realized due to the environmental, technological and logistical challenges of operating in the north. Yet, resource development is a fundamental policy priority for each of the Arctic states, with significant investment on the part of state government and private companies in offshore development in both the Barents and Beaufort Seas. Non-Arctic states are also intending on profiting from the region’s economic development. Arctic energy has already been identified as an important cornerstone for growing Asian markets, especially China and India. Resource development potential in the US and Canadian Arctic has been a catalyst for increased public and private interest in the region. Within the US, the expansion of the North Slope project and emerging opportunities in the Beaufort Sea has put pressure on government agencies and regulatory bodies to approve development, and development in the Barents Sea is progressing rapidly. Within Canada, opportunity in the Beaufort is matched by other major development projects like Baffinland’s Mary Rive Project (iron ore), the mining exploration boom in Nunavut and Yukon, and on-shore gas potential in both Yukon and Northwest Territories (GRID Arendal, February 2012). In Europe, the oil and gas industry is the key area for resource development in terms of both activities underway and revenue. Companies currently involved in the Arctic energy business include Gazprom and Rosneft (Russia), BP and Shell (UK), Statoil (Norway), Exxon Mobile, Chevron and ConocoPhillips (US). Russia is known to have approximately 90% of the Arctic’s proven oil reserves with the remaining found in Canada, Greenland, Alaska and Norway (ArticCOM Consortium, 2011). Mineral and metal extraction is also underway in Russia, Canada, Greenland and Svalbard (coal). There is also a large number of mineral deposits of significant interest on the Arctic Ocean and Barents Sea floor which have remained until now largely inaccessible. The economic and technical viability of exploration has been proven and extraction activities are now underway, particularly by Norway and Russia. Agriculture and fisheries have also become priority areas with an increased focus on modernization, restructuring and privatization of the agriculture and agro-industrial sectors. In fisheries in particular, the EU is focusing on fisheries cooperation with all states around the Baltic Sea. 6.1.2 Policy Economic development is among the main policy priorities of all the Arctic states as well as the EU. Generally this refers to exploitation of natural resources, both renewable resources such as fisheries, forestry and marine mammals, and non-renewable ones, particularly fossil energy resources, and different kinds of economic activities in and dealing with the Arctic (e.g., tourism,


One of the key priorities in the Arctic has consistently been the balanced development of the area’s rich natural resources with the protection of its fragile northern ecosystem and the values and beliefs of the native communities. Key areas for economic growth include oil and gas, fisheries, tourism, mining and forestry. Significant emphasis is also placed on infrastructure development including aviation, marine and surface transport, modern telecommunications and structures, bearing in the mind


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