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Polar Politics

  • Broadcast in News



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Once considered a frigid wasteland, the Arctic is melting faster than any other region on earth and revealing its hidden treasures in the process, from oil to new shipping routes. A race for control has broken out as the Arctic emerges as a region of vital economic and military importance. It is estimated that the Arctic holds nearly a quarter of the world’s undiscovered oil and gas reserves. Nations are furiously mapping seabeds, vying for sections of continental shelf in accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, set up to determine offshore boundaries. The U.S. has not ratified the Law of the Sea and therefore cannot file claims. But in addition to nations’ self-interests, the complex environmental, business and governance questions surrounding the Arctic may also necessitate more international cooperation.’s weekly radio show on Tuesday, May 19 at 7:30 p.m. EDT will explore polar politics. Worldfocus anchor Martin Savidge will host a panel of guests: McKenzie Funk is a writer for National Geographic and Harper’s Magazine who has reported extensively from the Arctic region. Jessica Shadian is a senior research fellow at the High North Center for Business and Governance at the Bodø Graduate School for Business and Governance in Bodø, Norway. Oran Young is a professor at the Bren School of Environmental Science and Management at the University of California, Santa Barbara.