In reponse to the increased global interest in the Arctic, the World Economic Forum's Global Agenda Council on the Arctic has published a report aiming to address the misconceptions often held about the region.
As the authors argue: “the Arctic is often thought of in the public imagination in visions of unspoiled ocean and landscapes, expansive ice, clean water, unique species and aboriginal cultures – essentially, it reminds everyone that a true wilderness still exists. In addition to important natural resources, the Arctic provides inspiration by maintaining its irreplaceable cultures, a pristine environment, healthy ecosystem and ground-breaking collaborative governance models.
While largely true, this vision is not the complete picture. With a population of about 4 million people and an annual economy of roughly US$ 230 billion, the Arctic falls under the jurisdiction of eight countries with a long history of governance in the region.”
This report identifies and explores four key challenges to ensuring the sustainable development of the Arctic region:
Challenge 1: The Arctic needs protection from environmental damage, resolution on certain global agreements, and new collaborative models to secure sustainable growth
Challenge 2: The Arctic needs investment in critical infrastructure projects and transport hubs
Challenge 3: The Arctic needs measures to better ensure human and environmental safety in the face of increased shipping and offshore activities
Challenge 4: The Arctic needs scientific research to further an understanding of the impacts of climate change, sustainable economic growth, natural resource development, and ecosystem protection
Resource shared by Juliette Aplin