REPUBLICANS are AWARE: China Eyes Arctic Options in Energy, Transport
Please don’t try to convince me that the Republicans or the Koch Brothers don’t believe in Climate Change. Anywhere there is a new transportation route, there is profit. Anywhere they can drill for precious resources is definitely on their radar. The know Climate Change is real. Why they wish the True Believers to think otherwise is a matter of speculation.
(CNN) — The decision to grant permanent observer status to China and five other nations by the Arctic Council meeting in Sweden Wednesday reflects the heightened interest by some of the world’s most powerful economies in an area rich in oil, gas, minerals, fish and new transport possibilities.
For new observer nations China, Japan and South Korea, shorter shipping routes to Europe through Arctic waters could open up prospects of new energy supply options later this decade, such as liquefied natural gas (LNG) from Russia’s Yamal Peninsula in northwest Siberia.
It could also lessen China’s dependence on oil and gas shipped from the Middle East, which must pass through the Southeast Asian chokepoint of the Strait of Malacca. Allied to China’s interest of getting oil and gas delivered from new pipelines across Myanmar and Central Asia, the potential of the Arctic trade routes loom large in China’s strategic thinking.
Five years ago, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) described the vast Arctic continental shelf as potentially the “largest unexplored prospective area for petroleum remaining on Earth.” A new U.S. Arctic policy unveiled by the Obama administration last week cites that 2008 study, which estimated that about 13% of the world’s undiscovered oil and 30% of its undiscovered gas lies north of the Arctic Circle.
In a 2012 update, the USGS put the mean undiscovered estimate of recoverable oil in Russia’s Arctic provinces alone at 28 billion barrels, plus about 27 trillion cubic meters of gas.