EU to seek ban on oil and gas exploration in Arctic amidst climate crisis
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EU to seek ban on oil and gas exploration in Arctic amidst climate crisis

The European Commission published Wednesday the “EU’s Arctic Strategy” outlining the EU’s goals within the arctic. These aims include prohibiting future mining of oil, coal, and gas in Arctic regions, given the current climate crisis.

The Arctic Strategy states, “The EU is committed to ensuring that oil, coal, and gas stay in the ground, including in Arctic regions.” Despite those claims, the EU has continued to export these resources from the Arctic. However, the EU did suggest that that the resources gathered will be used to “promote sustainable and reasonable solutions… needed for the green transition.”

The new Arctic Strategy also emphasizes the reality that the Arctic is a complex geopolitical arena. Arctic waters are increasingly growing in popularity for transport ships. Simultaneously, these same waters are also home to rising military tensions as Russia increases its presence throughout the region. These rising tensions within the Arctic are being closely monitored by NATO forces.

Given these challenges, the Artic Strategy highlights the fact that the Arctic needs to be managed holistically to ensure that the Arctic region can be sustained not only on an environmental level but on a political one as well.