According to the narratives transmitted through media and political discourse, climate change reduces the ice coverage in the Arctic and enhances shipping and other forms of maritime activities. Especially, expectations of an increasing level of transit shipping between Asian, especially Chinese, ports and ports in Europe and North America is dominant. Evidence, however, tells that the numbers of transit shipping through the Arctic Ocean are very limited, and dominated by European shipping companies. For Greenland, political expectations have also been high, since Greenland has been seen as "strategically" situated in relation to new shipping routes in the Arctic, But, again, the actual development has been moderate and not related to international transits but conditions in Greenland itself.
The existence of a sense of common or community interests is a prerequisite to establishing an order in a society, national or international. In this connection, it is notable that the protection of community interests is increasingly important in international law and the law of the sea is no exception. The increasing need for protecting community interests necessitates a new paradigm in the law of the sea. The legal issues regarding the marine Arctic should also be considered in the context of changing paradigms in the law of the sea. Thus this article seeks to overview principal issues of the international law governing the marine Arctic from the viewpoints of a dual paradigm, that is, the law of divided oceans (paradigm I) and the law of our common ocean (paradigm II).
The sea ice in the Arctic has shrunk significantly in the last decades. Partly as a result, the transport pattern has changed with more traffic in remote areas. This change may increase the risk of accidents. The critical factors are harsh weather, ice conditions, remoteness and vulnerability. In this paper we look into the risks of accidents in the Atlantic Arctic based on previous ship accidents and the changes in maritime activity. The risk has to be assessed to ensure a proper level of response in emergency situations. As accidents are rare, there are limited statistics available for Arctic marine accidents. Therefore, in this study a mostly qualitative analysis and expert judgement is the basis for the risk assessments. Implications for the emergency preparedness system of the region are discussed. The consequences of incidents depend on the incident type, scale and location,
This paper presents a detailed BC, NOx and SO2 emission inventory for ships in the Arctic in 2012 based on satellite AIS data, ship engine power functions and technology stratified emission factors. Emission projections are presented for the years 2020, 2030 and 2050. Furthermore, the BC, SO2 and O3 concentrations and the deposition of BC are calculated for 2012 and for two arctic shipping scenarios – with or without arctic diversion routes due to a possible polar sea ice extent in the future.
In 2012, the largest shares of Arctic ships emissions are calculated for fishing ships (45% for BC, 38% for NOx, 23% for SO2) followed by passenger ships (20%, 17%, 25%), tankers (9%, 13%, 15%), general cargo (8%, 11%, 12%) and container ships (5%, 7%, 8%). In 2050, without arctic diversion routes, the total emissions of BC, NOx and SO2 are expected to change by +16%, −32% and −63%, respectively, compared to 2012. The results for fishing ships are the least certain, caused by a less precise engine power – sailing speed relation.
The calculated BC, SO2, and O3 surface concentrations and BC deposition contributions from ships are low as a mean for the whole Arctic in 2012, but locally BC additional contributions reach up to 20% around Iceland, and high additional contributions (100–300%) are calculated in some sea areas for SO2. In 2050, the arctic diversion routes highly influence the calculated surface concentrations and the deposition of BC in the Arctic. During summertime navigation contributions become very visible for BC (>80%) and SO2 (>1000%) along the arctic diversion routes, while the O3 (>10%) and BC deposition (>5%) additional contributions, respectively, get highest over the ocean east of Greenland and in the High Arctic.
The geospatial ship type specific emission results presented in this paper have increased the accuracy of the emission inventories for ships in the Arctic. The methodology can be used to estimate shipping emissions in other regions of the world, and hence may serve as an input for other researchers and policy makers working in this field.