Friday, October 31, 2014

Russia's Plannings for the Polar Region


Next spring, Russia will contact the United Nations to apply for
[control of] 1.2 million square kilometres in the North Pole region.


In recent years, Russia has speeded up its pace in North Polar studies and development. In July 2007, Russian scientists in a submarine went more than 4.000 m deep to the bottom of the Arctic Ocean, leaving behind a Russian flag and a time capsule to declare sovereign rights.

In February 2013, the outline of a strategic plan for developing the North Pole and which was signed by Putin [included] the development of the North Pole's continental shelf as its focal point. At present, Russia's No.1 item, the development of natural resources on the North Pole's continental shelf, [should have been] officially completed by the end of last year. [As to] the 72 million tons reserve of the Prirazlomnaya oil field, a yearly output of 6.6 million tons could be reached.

Editor's Note: The article uses a Chinese adaptation for the Russian name of the industrial oil platform Prirazlomnaya (普里拉兹洛姆内伊). The platform is being considered the first Arctic-class ice-resistant oil rig in the world.

Furthermore, Russia's future military plannings include the building of 13 airfields and 10 technical radar stations in Russia's North Polar territory in order to ensure Russia's "military safety in that region".

[Source: People's Network - Global News 人民网-环球时报 on October 31, 2014]


Some reliable background information on oil exploration in the Arctic region can be found in an article named "Arctic extraction presents huge potential but high risks", written by the Norwegian policy analyst Håvard Bergo. Here are a few relevant quotations from that article:

The Arctic was once of interest only to polar scientists and adventurers, but this is rapidly changing as a warmer climate is making the region increasingly accessible for resource extraction. Some studies estimate that the region contains close to a quarter of global unexplored petroleum resources, as well as substantial mineral reserves, including massive deposits of crucial rare earth metals in Greenland. Most of the region is already carved up, with the exception of the area around the North Pole itself.

The region is already important for the petroleum industry. In 2010, 10% of global oil production and 22% of natural gas production came from here. Russia is predicted to have the largest unexplored reserves (41% of total arctic oil resources and 70% of total natural gas resources), ahead of Alaska (28% of oil and 14% of gas) and Greenland (18% of oil and 8% of gas), leaving smaller but still significant deposits in Canada and Norway. Importantly, most undiscovered resources are presumed to be offshore, necessitating huge investments for exploration, drilling and infrastructure to make the projects commercially viable.


Chinese Language Flooding the Web - Russian Oil Feeding China's Industry

Visitors from Novosibirsk in Russia, using different equipment and internet provider,
and who came from the same neighbourhood. They might even know each other !

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