Future Arctic

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Island Press, Feb 3, 2015 - Nature - 192 pages
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In one hundred years, or even fifty, the Arctic will look dramatically different than it does today. As polar ice retreats and animals and plants migrate northward, the arctic landscape is morphing into something new and very different from what it once was. While these changes may seem remote, they will have a profound impact on a host of global issues, from international politics to animal migrations. In Future Arctic, journalist and explorer Edward Struzik offers a clear-eyed look at the rapidly shifting dynamics in the Arctic region, a harbinger of changes that will reverberate throughout our entire world.

Future Arctic reveals the inside story of how politics and climate change are altering the polar world in a way that will have profound effects on economics, culture, and the environment as we know it. Struzik takes readers up mountains and cliffs, and along for the ride on snowmobiles and helicopters, sailboats and icebreakers. His travel companions, from wildlife scientists to military strategists to indigenous peoples, share diverse insights into the science, culture and geopolitical tensions of this captivating place. With their help, Struzik begins piecing together an environmental puzzle: How might the land’ s most iconic species— caribou, polar bears, narwhal— survive? Where will migrating birds flock to? How will ocean currents shift? And what fundamental changes will oil and gas exploration have on economies and ecosystems? How will vast unclaimed regions of the Arctic be divided?

A unique combination of extensive on-the-ground research, compelling storytelling, and policy analysis, Future Arctic offers a new look at the changes occurring in this remote, mysterious region and their far-reaching effects.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
EightFootLong Beavers Scimitar Cats and Woolly Mammoths What the Past Tells Us about the Future Arctic
11
Oil and Ice
25
The Arctic Ocean A Sleeping Giant Wakes Up
43
Stormy Arctic The New Normal
59
The Arctic Melting Pot
75
Lords of the Arctic No More
89
Caribou at the Crossroads
109
Paradise Lost
129
Drill Baby Drill
143
The Need for an Arctic Treaty
165
Conclusion
181
Acknowledgments
195
About the Author
199
Board of Directors
201
Copyright

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About the author (2015)

Edward Struzik is an award-winning writer and photographer. A fellow at the School of Policy Studies, Queen’ s Institute for Energy and Environmental Policy at Queen University in Kingston, Canada, his numerous accolades include the prestigious Atkinson Fellowship in Public Policy and the Sir Sandford Fleming Medal, awarded for outstanding contributions to the understanding of science. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta.

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