The Arctic: Thaw With Conflict Potential
Once a marginal region in global politics and economics, the Arctic is becoming more and more important; a development that has much to do with climate change. This paper argues that the thawing of the Arctic ice shield not only opens up new economic possibilities – access to raw materials is eased, and shipping distances may decrease – as well as opportunities for cooperation but also potential for conflict. According to the author the potential for conflict exists mainly where sovereign and exploitation rights cannot be clarified under existing international law. The risk of a military escalation, however, remains low.
© 2012 Center for Security Studies (CSS), ETH Zurich