Arctic Council Case Study

2125 Words 9 Pages
Crossroads of the Arctic Council?
When the Arctic Council was established in 1996 it was designed to bring together the states bordering the Arctic Ocean on issues related to environmental protection and sustainability. The organization does not address military issues in the region, which allows it to be one of the few international organizations in which both the U.S. and Russia will cooperate. However, I argue that there will be a change in the progression of this council in the next few years as the ocean continues to melt and ships are better able to access the region. They will either expand their agenda to include security issues in the region or they will continue with their current level of involvement. I intend to answer what impact
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Three Visions of the Arctic Council,” develops three different alternatives the Arctic Council may mold into due to the changing nature of the environment and the security issues that are arising. The first of these is a society for Arctic states, the second a steward for the region, and the third a fully-fledged security actor. Currently, the council is a society of sovereign states which are firmly controlling the directives of the council (57). They could move forward to being either an organization which simply addresses the environmental and integrational aspects of the Arctic or they could become a security …show more content…
The Antarctic Treaty has a precautionary approach to the environment. In its development, the participants decided to limit the use of Antarctica to scientific study, thereby limiting its ability to be exploited as either a resource hub or a tourist destination (Duyck, 2011, 699). In contrast, the Arctic Council did not put many precautionary guidelines into its formation, however, its member states have their own rules and regulations which they follow in their own parts of the ocean. This is both dangerous and beneficial, as it could lead to commercial exploitation of the region, including overfishing, offshore oil spills, or other environmental hazards. It could be beneficial because it includes internal accountability rather than external. The member states are more likely to follow their own laws than laws put on them by intergovernmental

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