Sea Technology

SEP 2017

The industry's recognized authority for design, engineering and application of equipment and services in the global ocean community

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Aileen Torres-Bennett, Managing Editor, Sea Technology magazine September 2017 / st 7 editorial SEA TECHNOLOGY® I N C L U D I N G U N D E RS EA TEC H N O L O G Y The Industry's Recognized Authority for Design, Engineering and Application of Equipment and Services in the Global Ocean Community Charles H. Bussmann Founder and Publisher 1924-1999 publisher C. Amos Bussmann managing editor Aileen Torres-Bennett assistant editor Amelia Jaycen production manager Russell S. Conward assistant design/ Joshua Ortega website manager advertising Susan M. Ingle Owen service manager ADVERTISING REPRESENTATIVES: HEADQUARTERS C. Amos Bussmann 1600 Wilson Blvd., Suite 1010 Arlington, VA 22209 Tel: (703) 524-3136 • FAX: (703) 841-0852 e-mail: NORTH AMERICA, EAST COAST MJ McDuffee Director of Business Development Tel: 772-485-0333 mobile e-mail: NORTH AMERICA, WEST COAST John Sabo Barbara Sabo Gregory Sabo John Sabo Associates 447 Herondo St. #305 Hermosa Beach, CA 90254 Tel: (310) 374-2301 e-mail: EUROPE John Gold John F. Gold & Associates "Highview" 18a Aultone Way Sutton, Surrey, SM1 3LE, England Phone/FAX Nat'l: 020-8641-7717 Int'l: +44-20-8641-7717 e-mail: Sea Technology back issues available on microform. Contact: NA Publishing, Inc. P.O. Box 998, Ann Arbor, MI 48106-0998 1-800-420-6272 COMPASS PUBLICATIONS, INC. 1600 Wilson Blvd., Suite 1010 Arlington, VA 22209-2510 Tel: (703) 524-3136 FAX: (703) 841-0852 publishers of: Sea Technology Commercial Fisheries News Fish Farming News Commercial Marine Directory Fish Farmers Phone Book/Directory Sea Technology Buyers Guide/Directory Sea Tech e-News Celebrating more than 53 years of serving the global ocean community - Since 1963 - The Arctic Heats Up In Policy Circles E vidence that the Arctic is becoming a hot topic in the government town of Washington, D.C. was clear this summer with the occasion of two Arctic-fo- cused events. One was the Wilson Center Arctic Circle Forum, which took place June 21 to 22, and the other was the Symposium on the Impacts of an Ice-Dimin- ishing Arctic on Naval and Maritime Operations, which took place July 18 to 20, marking the seventh time the symposium was held. According to the 2016 Arctic Report Card created by NOAA, the average sur- face air temperature for the year ending September 2016 is by far the highest since 1900, and new monthly record highs were recorded for January, February, October and November 2016. After only modest changes from 2013 to 2015, minimum sea ice extent at the end of summer 2016 tied with 2007 for the second lowest in the satellite record, which started in 1979. Spring snow cover extent in the North American Arctic was the lowest in the satellite record, which started in 1967. Clearly, it's getting warmer in the Arctic, and the Arctic is a barometer of climate change. Right now, the closest thing to a governing structure for the Arctic is The Arctic Council, which is an intergovernmental forum comprising the member states of Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the U.S., as well as Arctic indigenous groups. The goal is to foster cooperation on sustainable development and environmental protection in the Arctic. Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard Admiral Paul Zukunft spoke at both the Arctic Circle Forum and the Arctic Symposium this summer, emphasizing the im- portance of the Arctic to the U.S. At this point in time, the Coast Guard, which has been operating in the Arctic since 1867, really carries the ball on Arctic issues for the U.S. While The Arctic Council creates policy, it is the Arctic Coast Guard Forum, established October 2015, that implements policy. The Arctic is a harsh, remote region, and less than 5 percent of it is measured according to modern methods, as Zukunft has pointed out. One of the primary concerns in the Arctic is the warming temperatures and diminishing sea ice, which could lead to environmental refugees as sea level rises with the changing climate. In the short term, with the Crystal Serenity cruise ship making a historic voyage through the Northwest Passage in 2016, the Coast Guard has been preparing for the possibility of large-scale civilian disasters in the region. In September, there will be a search and rescue exercise conducted by the Arctic Coast Guard Forum. The number of icebergs is increasing in the Arctic, and they are coming into the shipping lanes, causing navigation hazards. In April 2017, The AP reported that more than 400 icebergs drifted into the North Atlantic shipping lanes in the course of one week. Global warming was a possible cause of this unusual phenomenon, which caused ships to decelerate to crawl speed or travel hundreds of miles on detours. The Coast Guard has been advocating to replace the tiny, aging fleet of ice- breakers. Only one heavy icebreaker exists, and it's about 40 years old. Zukunft has been trying to get the funds to build at least one new icebreaker, with the goal of vessel completion by 2023. At the symposium, he said the Coast Guard needs three heavy and three medium icebreakers, and industry has stepped forward to help, but funding continues to be an issue. In contrast, Russia has 40 icebreakers, and in 2020 they will deliver Russian ice-breaking corvettes, he said. New U.S. icebreakers will enhance U.S. presence in the Arctic and support activities such as national defense and fisheries enforcement. In addition to equipment, managing the Arctic also requires data. "We need science to inform decisions," said Zukunft, who uses a planning factor of 6 ft. sealevel rise. From climate monitoring and predicting to oil spill management to fisheries management to defense to tourism, science and industry have the chance to play major roles in the opening of this new frontier. ST

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