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Stop the Arctic Madness!

Posted by feww on January 22, 2008

Increased Arctic Oil Activity will end in Eco-Disaster

A report prepared by the eight-nation Arctic Council released on Monday said, the rising global demand for oil and gas is increasing the activity in the Arctic. The increased activity will enhance the risk of oil spills in the region.

“Oil spills can kill large numbers of animals by covering them in oil, and create long-term contamination that can affect populations and ecosystems for decades”.

“The Arctic is generally considered to be vulnerable to oil spills due to slow recovery of cold, highly seasonal ecosystems, and the difficulty of clean up in remote, cold regions, especially in waters where sea ice is present”.

Arctic Oil and Gas 2007 was prepared by about 100 scientists who have been working on the report since 2002. The release of the report scheduled for 2007 was reportedly delayed because the United States and Sweden had reportedly blocked publication of policy recommendations.

The report discusses:

  • The significance of levels of petroleum hydrocarbons in the Arctic and significance of cold on toxicological effect
  • The toxicological impact of hydrocarbons on people
  • Impacts of oil spills on land including an account of 1994 commuter public pipeline ruptured that contaminated a large area
  • Effects of marine spills including subarctic spills such as the Exxon Valdez
  • Potential of impacts from arctic spills (and some of the consequences)
  • Physical disturbance including impacts of infrastructure and activity on land surface and habitats
  • Effects of offshore activity through noise an offshore construction
  • Significance of further habitat fragmentation and disruption to wildlife
  • Social impact on the indigenous population
  • Implication for health care and social services

For more information and a copy of report visit Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Program.

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