The Environmental Audit Committee has published the report of its inquiry into Protecting the Arctic. The Environmental Audit Committee calls for a halt on oil drilling until: • A pan-Arctic oil spill response standard is in place • A stricter financial liability regime for oil and gas operations is introduced that requires companies to prove that they can meet the costs of cleaning up • An oil and gas industry group is set up to peer-review companies' spill response plans and operating practices, reporting publicly • Further independent research and testing on oil spill response techniques in Arctic conditions is conducted, including an assessment of their environmental side-effects • An internationally recognised environmental sanctuary is established in at least part of the Arctic Chair of the Committee, Joan Walley MP, said: "The oil companies should come clean and admit that dealing with an oil spill in the icy extremes of the Arctic would be exceptionally difficult. The infrastructure to mount a big clean-up operation is simply not in place and conventional oil spill response techniques have not been proven to work in such severe conditions.
A further eight Greenpeace International activists have been detained for two months in Russia pending an investigation into possible charges of piracy. The eight will join 22 others, including a freelance videographer and freelance photographer, detained on Thursday following a peaceful protest against Arctic oil drilling. Greenpeace International pledged to appeal all 30 detentions. The 30 have already been held by the Russian authorities for 10 days since the Greenpeace ship Arctic
Thousands of people took part in an emergency day of solidarity protests 5, October 2013, around the world to demand the release of 30 people imprisoned in Russia after they were detained aboard a Greenpeace ship in the Arctic. Peaceful events were held on every continent, in more than 135 locations across 45 countries, from New Zealand to Mexico, from Thailand to Finland and the United States. There are also protests planned across Russia.
The Dutch government has lodged a rare application at the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS), asking it to order the immediate release of the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise and all those who were aboard for the peaceful protest against Gazprom’s Arctic oil platform, the Prirazlomnaya. If ITLOS rules in favor of the Netherlands, the 28 Greenpeace International activists, freelance photographer Denis Sinyakov and freelance videographer Kieron Bryan could go home while
Lawyers for the Arctic 30 have started to lodge applications with Russia's Investigative Committee seeking exit visas for the non-Russian nationals. If the applications are approved, the foreign nationals would be allowed to leave Russia to await ongoing investigations into their Greenpeace International Arctic oil drilling protest. All of the foreign nationals, 26 people from 17 nations, have had their passports returned to them after their release on bail from detention last month
On January 30, 2014, the White House released the Implementation Plan for the National Strategy for the Arctic Region. The purpose of the Implementation Plan is to put flesh on the bones of the May 10, 2013 National Strategy for the Arctic Region. The National Strategy had identified three lines of effort to address challenges posed by the changing Arctic environment. The Implementation Plan sets forth the methodology, process, and approach for executing the Strategy
Make no mistake about it: the Arctic is open for business. The cumulative environmental footprint of oil exploration outfits, merchant shipping, mining, eco-tourism and the cruise ship trades is thus far minor, but the potential for an exponential increase in commerce – especially if the climate trends now affecting the region continue – is seemingly limitless. For the maritime industry, the down side to this is as big as the most promising business opportunity to come along in
The debate regarding working in and around the Arctic is multi-tiered, with environmental, technical and emergency response heading the list. There is no debate regarding the fuel, money and emissions to be saved by shortening select global shipping routes. In a report from Bloomberg news posted June 13 on http://www.businessweek.com, it was said there will be a rise in dry bulk cargos hauled through Arctic waters this season
The European Parliament has passed a resolution calling for a protected area around the North Pole which could ban oil companies and industrial fishing fleets from the region, informs Greenpeace. The move represents a clear break from the current positions of ‘Arctic Council’ members such as Norway, Denmark, Canada and Russia who have resisted calls for permanent protection of the Arctic region. In contrast, Finland, another Arctic state
When the Arctic Council’s Task Force on Arctic Marine Oil Pollution Prevention (TFOPP) met recently in Ottawa, it says it took important steps towards developing the Action Plan for oil pollution prevention mandated by Ministers in Kiruna. The Task Force is focused particularly on potential safety measures to prevent oil pollution from maritime and petroleum activities. The Arctic Council’s Task Force on Arctic Marine Oil Pollution Prevention (TFOPP) held its third meeting in
An ordinary, long-scheduled journey of an oil drilling rig into Arctic waters is turning into a major political exercise, attracting international scrutiny and creating a dilemma for Exxon Mobil Corp. Exxon, the top U.S. oil major and the world's most valued oil company, is bringing the rig
The “World’s Best” Crystal Cruises is introducing a new expedition-style voyage traversing the Arctic Ocean via the legendary Northwest Passage – one so mysterious and remote (500 miles north of the Arctic Circle)
Alaska Senate Majority informs that it welcomes news that Admiral Robert J. Papp Jr., the 24th Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard since May 25, 2010, has been appointed by the U.S. State Department as a Special Representative for the Arctic Region.
At the July 23, 2014, hearing of the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation on “Implementing U.S. Policy in the Arctic” the committee chairman, Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA), opened the proceedings by holding up a graphic of the icebreaker fleets of the
Dynagas LNG Partners LP announced today that it has completed its previously announced acquisition of the ownership interests in the entity that owns and operates the 2013 built ice class liquefied natural gas carrier Arctic Aurora from Dynagas Holding Ltd
Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed off a new law on mineral extraction tax incentives for hydrocarbons produced in Yamal and the Nenets Autonomous District, reports official news agency Arctic-info. The document [signed] also refers to the resources that are extracted in Eastern Siberia
Atlantic Towing (USA) has selected newly-designed, ice-strengthened PSV 5000 vessels from Damen Shipyards Group to meet its 10-year offshore support contract with ExxonMobil Canada Properties and Hibernia Management and Development Company Ltd. (HMDC)
Today in U.S. Naval History - July 8 1778 - Allied French fleet under Comte d'Estaing arrives in America. 1853 - Commodore Matthew C. Perry sails his squadron into Tokyo Bay. 1879 - USS Jeannette departs San Francisco to explore Arctic. 1944 - Naval bombardment of Guam begins.
Japan's Mitsui OSK Lines Ltd (MOL) said on Wednesday that it will start transporting liquefied natural gas (LNG) through the Arctic Ocean in 2018 using icebreaker LNG tankers. MOL, with its joint venture partner China Shipping, has ordered three icebreaker LNG carriers from South Korea's Daewoo
The Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, chaired by Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA), will hold a hearing next week to review U.S. policy in the Arctic and how the agencies with the largest presence in the Arctic intend to implement such policy.
Russian Ministry of Finance transferred the first tranche of 5 million euros for implementation of environmental projects of the Arctic Council. This amount is the first payment of Russia’s financial contribution with the total amount of 10 million euros to the Project Support
Crystal Cruises says it is introducing a new expedition-style voyage traversing the Arctic Ocean via the Northwest Passage (500 miles north of the Arctic Circle) that explorers spent centuries seeking, until it was first completed successfully by Roald Amundsen just over 100 years ago.
The U.S. Department of Defense informs that Detyens Shipyards Inc., North Charleston, South Carolina, is being awarded an $11,631,622 firm-fixed-price contract for a 75-calendar day regular overhaul and dry-docking of USNS Arctic (T-AOE 8).
Swedish oil firm Lundin Petroleum has confirmed the size of a significant oil discovery in the Arctic, the company said on Monday after completing a second well. The Gohta discovery in the Norwegian section of the Barents Sea is now estimated to contain between 111 and 232 million barrels Of oil
U.S. sanctions on Russia include Rosneft, Exxon's partner: Project may not break sanctions, but brings political risks. An ordinary, long-scheduled journey of an oil drilling rig into Arctic waters is turning into a major political exercise