Sunday, February 16, 2020

Proposal assignment Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1250 words

Proposal assignment - Essay Example Audience: The audience of this study is government officials and policy makers. The study will help policy makers while making decisions regarding climate change, global warming and Law of the Sea. The decisions taken by the government officials regarding the future of arctic will have implications for humanity. If they decide to protect the arctic environment, that would be sustainable. If they decide to exploit arctic by using ice breakers etc, the consequences are unpredictable. Contents Introduction 4 Statement of the Problem 7 Research Questions 7 Hypothesis 8 Objectives 8 Audience 8 Introduction Climate change has brought global focus on arctic. The ice in the arctic is melting. If the present trend continues, Arctic Ocean would be ice-free by 2050. The arctic is the region around earth’s North Pole, opposite of Antarctica. The arctic circle includes arctic ocean and parts of Canada, Greenland (a territory of Denmark), Russia, the United States (Alaska), Iceland, Norway, Sweden and Finland. Among these eight countries in the Arctic Circle, five are arctic coastal states- United States (Alaska), Canada, Russia, Norway and Denmark (Greenland). The Arctic Ocean is covered with ice and is surrounded by treeless permafrost. The sea ice in the arctic has declined very much in recent years. ` The recording of extent of ice in arctic began in 1953. Since then, the extent of the summer sea ice has been declining. The extent of ice was the lowest in 2007, the second lowest in 2008, and the third lowest in 2010. . Currently, the snow cover in the Arctic is present for about 200 days per year. A decrease in the duration of the snow season results in increased warming. Between 1970 and 2000, there was a decrease in duration of the snow season by approximately 2.5 days per decade. From the commercial point of view, it is a new opportunity as exploration of the arctic has become easy now. Estimates show that Arctic can contain about 20 per cent of world's reserve s of hydrocarbons. Most of these resources happen to be in the Russian part of the arctic. New trade routes linking the Atlantic and the Pacific via arctic instead of Panama Canal has become a possibility now. So, there began a geopolitical competition in the region to gain control over transport routes and natural resources. All these have increased the strategic importance of arctic region. Countries bordering arctic are also in the process of preparing territorial claims for submission to the Commission on the Limits of Continental Shelf. Russia claims a large portion of arctic. The Arctic is highly vulnerable to the effects of global warming. There is greater warming in the Arctic than global average. Because of this, there are concerns that the melting of ice in Arctic could result in rise in sea levels. The current Arctic ice melt might also lead to Arctic methane release. Large amount of methane is stored in the permafrost. Methane is a greenhouse gas and is more dangerous th an carbon dioxide. Scientists are not sure whether this is natural cycle or manmade. Apart from concerns regarding the negative impact of warming in the Arctic, some potential opportunities have come up. Since the middle ages, world’s maritime powers looked for a shorter route between Atlantic and Asia. The melting of ice opens up the possibility of two trans arctic routes- The Northern Sea route and the Northwest passage. The new routes will reduce distances between Europe and Asia. It will also provide

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