Operation to Liberate the MV Arctic Sea
According to Defence Minister Anatoly Serdyukov, eight people of Estonian, Latvian and Russian nationality were arrested during the operation to liberate the Arctic Sea. Investigations revealed that on July 24, 2009, these people boarded the Arctic Sea and using the threat of arms, demanded that the crew change course. Then the Arctic Sea sailed on to an African route indicated by the aggressors and turned off its navigation equipment. Serdyukov reported on the measures taken in accordance with the President's instructions concerning the disappearance of the Arctic Sea and the Russian crew on board. Earlier on during the meeting, Serdyukov reported to President Medvedev that the crew of the Arctic Sea has been released.
Arctic Sea Ice Report
The National Snow and Ice Data Center, sponsored by the University of Colorado and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), issued its report on Arctic sea ice. The ice in the Arctic Ocean has reached its minimum extent for 2009 and is starting to reform. This year’s minimum extent is above the record and near-record minimums of the last two years, but lower than the average minimums of the past 30 years. (9/17/09).
Underprepared for Maritime Accidents
The UNH/NOAA said that the existing infrastructure for responding to maritime accidents in the Arctic is limited and more needs to be done to enhance emergency response capacity as Arctic sea ice declines and ship traffic in the region increases, according to new report released on Jan. 29 by the University of New Hampshire and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The report details findings from a panel of experts and decision-makers from Arctic nation governments
ABB to Supply Key Equipment for Russian Icebreaker
ABB wins $35 million order for next generation icebreaker in Russia’s Arctic. Integrated propulsion and electrical systems to maximize performance and energy efficiency of icebreaker expected to operate in 2 meters of ice at minus 35 degrees Celsius Zurich, Switzerland, October 1, 2012 – ABB, the leading power and automation technology group, recently won an order worth $35 million from the Baltic Shipyard Ltd
Russia's Floating Research Station Unfolds in the Arctic
The Russian Ministry of Natural Resources says that Russia plans to establish a floating research station in Arctic sea. The floating research station “North Pole-41” is already in the making, says the Ministry statement. The Ministry says that the station will be an important instrument in securing Russian presence in the Arctic and will give Russia the opportunity to set new priorities for the scientific research on the drifting ice.
Melting Sea Ice: A Canary in the Coal Mine
The rapid loss of Arctic sea ice is a sentinel. Most of us will never venture into the Arctic, but it can and does provide us with a forewarning of impacts coming to our parts of the Earth – and some of the most significant impacts will directly affect the maritime industry. In earlier times, coal miners were sometimes overcome by the buildup of odorless carbon monoxide gas. Some died as a consequence. Eventually it was realized that canaries were more susceptible to the gas
Northern Sea Route Ice-free Soon?
Winter measurements by Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research point to early and large scale summer melt The Northern Passage, the sea route along the North coast of Russia, is expected to be free of ice early again this summer. The forecast was made by sea ice physicists of the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in the Helmholtz Association based on a series of measurement flights over the Laptev Sea, a marginal sea of the Arctic Ocean.
Halt Arctic Oil Drilling Urges UK Parliamentary Committee
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
NOAA Deploys Survey Ships for Arctic Charting Projects
Effort aims to improve navigational safety with updated maps of region NOAA announced the official launch of its 2015 Arctic hydrographic survey season took place this morning, in Kodiak, Alaska, in a World Ocean Day ceremony which showcased the deployment of the NOAA ships Rainier and Fairweather. “Most Arctic waters that are charted were surveyed with obsolete technology, with some of the information dating back to Captain Cook's voyages
Sovcomflot Inks $180 Mn Credit for Two Shuttle Tanker
On 23 November 2016, Sovcomflot and Sberbank signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) paving the way for a new USD 180 million long-term credit agreement with a term of up to 15 years. On behalf of the parties the MOU was signed by Sergey Frank, Chairman and CEO of Sovcomflot, and Herman Gref, CEO and Chairman of the Executive Board of Sberbank. The credit facility agreement, the subject of the MOU, will finance two Panamax Arctic shuttle tankers within Sovcomflot’s fleet
FarSounder Sonar for RRS Sir David Attenborough
The new $180 million polar research vessel RRS Sir David Attenborough currently under construction at the Cammell Laird Birkenhead shipyard in the Port of Liverpool City Region, U.K. is slated to be equipped with FarSounder's longest range sonar system, the FarSounder-1000. The new, state-of-the-art ship, owned by Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), will enable scientists to explore and undertake science in new areas of the Antarctic and Arctic seas.
Arctic Thaw helps Russian Shipping
Arctic thaw aids shipping most along Russian coast; Russia to start LNG exports from Yamal in late 2017. Russian shipping in the Arctic is benefiting from winds that are driving the oldest and thickest sea ice towards North America, further opening a remote region that is thawing amid global warming, scientists say. The thinning Russian ice could help liquefied natural gas (LNG) tankers, due to start exports from Russia's Yamal Peninsula in late 2017
EU Project Aims to Improve Arctic Shipping Safety
A three-year, €6.5 million ($7.7 million) research project has been launched to address safety and efficiency in Arctic ship operations. Funded by the EU’s Horizon 2020 program, SEDNA sets out to develop a risk-based approach to Arctic navigation, ship design and maritime operations. Recent years have seen a rapid increase in shipping operations in Arctic regions, as ice cover has reduced due to global warming
HMM to Launch Arctic Sea Service
South Korea’s leading container carrier Hyundai Merchant Marine Co (HMM) is considering launching a regular liner service via the Arctic Sea, a move that could cut transits between Asia and Europe considerably, reported Pulse. South Korea’s largest ocean carrier is considering a trial operation from as early as 2020. A number of local logistics companies have ventured into the Arctic routes, but did not last due to lack of ships and crew expertise to navigate against
Arctic Ice Loss Driven by Natural Swings, Not Just Mankind -Study
Natural swings in the Arctic climate have caused up to half the precipitous losses of sea ice around the North Pole in recent decades, with the rest driven by man-made global warming, scientists said on Monday. The study indicates that an ice-free Arctic Ocean, often feared to be just years away, in one of the starkest signs of man-made global warming, could be delayed if nature swings back to a cooler mode.
EU Lawmakers Reject Call for Ban on Arctic Oil Exploration
The European Parliament rejected a call to ban Arctic oil and gas exploration on Thursday, in a symbolic vote seen as a barometer for future moves by Brussels to regulate to protect the region. Lawmakers who back the ban, which had drawn the ire of Norway, say the European Union needs a strategy for future developments in a region being transformed by climate change. Lawmakers voted 414-180 to reject the non-binding motion calling for the European Commission and member states to work
Arctic Ice Sets New Record Low for Winter
The extent of sea ice in the Arctic Ocean has set a new record low for the wintertime in a region strongly affected by long-term trends of global warming, U.S. and European scientists said on Wednesday. Sea ice around the North Pole expands to its biggest extent of the year in February or March after a deep freeze in the winter polar darkness and shrinks to the smallest of the year in September, at the end of the brief Arctic summer.
First Icebreaking LNG Carrier Ready for Service
The world’s first icebreaking liquefied natural gas (LNG) carrier, Christophe de Margerie, has berthed at the gas terminal at Sabetta Port in Russia, becoming the first vessel to do so. Built by Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co., Ltd. (DSME) in South Korea, the tanker was designed to order for SCF Group, specifically to serve Russia’s Yamal LNG project, and transport LNG year round in the difficult ice conditions of the Ob Bay and Kara Sea.
New LNG Tanker Forges Path for Arctic Shipping
An ice-breaking tanker docked for the first time at Russia's Arctic port of Sabetta to test a new route that could open the ice-bound Arctic Ocean to ships carrying oil and liquefied gas. The route is eagerly anticipated by energy firms that want to develop resources in the Arctic but face obstacles in getting oil and gas from remote and freezing fields to world markets. Environmental activists fear commercial shipping in the Arctic -- now possible because climate change has
Statoil Downplays Risks Ahead of Arctic Drilling
Norway's Statoil on Monday played down concerns that drilling in the Arctic is risky, days before it kickstarts its drilling campaign in the Barents Sea, where the country believes around half of its remaining resources could be located. Despite opposition from environmentalists, the company plans to drill five wells in the Norwegian sector of the Barents Sea, including Korpfjell, which will be the world's northernmost well and in a formerly disputed border area with Russia
Arctic Council Meeting Stirs Hidden Tensions
As foreign ministers from countries with territory in the far North celebrated an agreement on fighting climate change this week, one topic seethed below the surface: growing competition for Arctic resources and sea lanes as the ice melts. Russia, one of eight members of the Arctic Council which includes the United States, Canada and the Nordic countries, has been pouring money and missiles into the Arctic as well as reopening and building bases there
Ban Heavy Fuel Oil in the Arctic: WWF-Canada
International Maritime Organization (IMO) has agreed to take steps that could lead to a phase-out of the use of heavy fuel oil (HFO) in Arctic shipping following an appeal from the Government of Canada, Indigenous participants and testimony from WWF-Canada. During a week-long meeting at IMO headquarters in London, WWF highlighted recent reports outlining major gaps in spill response capacity in the Arctic.
Clean Arctic Alliance Welcomes IMO Action on Arctic HFO
As the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC 71) concluded on last Friday, the Clean Arctic Alliance welcomed the support from Member States for a proposal to identify measures which will mitigate the risks posed by the use of heavy fuel oil (HFO) in Arctic waters, and called on the IMO to work towards a swift conclusion of the work. The proposal
Ocean Conservancy Calls for Clean Arctic
The following statement was issued by Sarah Bobbe, Arctic Program Specialist at Ocean Conservancy, at the conclusion today of the International Maritime Organization’s Marine Environmental Protection Committee meeting where member states supported a proposal to identify mitigation measures for heavy fuel oil (HFO) use in the Arctic: “Ocean Conservancy welcomes steps taken by the International Maritime Organization to mitigate risks to the Arctic from the use
Activists Protest near Oil Rig in Norway's Arctic Sea Area
Environmental activists protested on Friday near an offshore rig contracted by Statoil in the remote Norwegian Arctic, where the firm is looking for oil and gas deposits. The Nordic country wants to open up northern areas for exploration to offset declining production in the south. Oil and gas production is Norway's leading industry, accounting for 20 percent of its economy. From the Greenpeace Arctic Sunrise ship