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Publishers WeeklyIn this dense but rewarding read, journalist and international relations specialist Howard (The Oil Hunters) looks at the strategic implications of climate change in the Arctic region. Dismissing the "much discussed" scenario of "brutal, bitter and bloody confrontation" over the region's rich resources, (Howard believes that as resources run low worldwide, market-driven economies will recognize cooperation as their best strategy), he sees the "real risk of future confrontation" in the Arctic's "strategic location. As ice melts and borders shift, disputes may arise over which countries-the U.S., Russia, Canada, Greenland-own the Arctic, creating a cascade of problems logistical, economic and military. If, for example, "Chinese or Russian energy companies could establish a presence in a petroleum-rich place like Greenland," then the U.S. might feel threatened. Other industries like international shipping will certainly be affected: "sailing between London and Tokyo would be reduced by 3,500 miles." Howard goes into grim detail regarding every aspect of the complex situation, but is guardedly optimistic that treaties can resolve these issues. Environmentalists and political buffs should find this an interesting and unexpected analysis.
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