US Arctic Research Commission
August 26, 2011

Today's Eventstodaysevents 


The House and Senate are not in session.


13th Arctic Ungulates Conference (AUC), August 22-26, 2011. The theme of the conference will be "Challenges of Managing Northern Ungulates." The theme addresses the difficulties of managing ungulate populations that are faced with the unpredictable effects of climate change and an ever-increasing human presence on the land. The conference will also focus on the challenges associated with developing recovery actions for declining caribou and reindeer populations that are an integral part of Aboriginal cultures and ways of life.

Media Reviewtodaysevents    


russian flagRussia Is Not Ready for Arctic Oil. Russia's first platform for permanent oil drilling in Arctic waters arrives on-site in the Pechora Sea this weekend. Several environmentalists believe that oil spill prevention and mitigation cannot be assured in the remote location. Barents Observer 


Arctic Science. [Editorial] Prime Minister Stephen Harper is back in what seems to be his favourite place in Canada -- the Arctic -- but unlike previous trips that focused on questions of sovereignty, this tour is raising some troubling questions about whether the polar frontier is ready for an influx of new development. Mr. Harper used a gold mine in Baker Lake as the backdrop for an announcement touting the economic potential and development opportunities emerging in the Arctic. The mine, which opened just four years ago and already employs 760 people, has been a bonanza for the tiny remote community in Nunavut. Winnipeg Free Press  


Arctic Strategy Seeks Balance Between Resources and Environment. The foreign minister pledges Denmark would turn the North Pole into a nature reserve if granted the territory. Denmark will make a claim for the North Pole and seek to exploit mineral and fossil fuel reserves in its Arctic territory, the Foreign Ministry revealed this week as it published the Kingdom of Denmark's nine-year Arctic strategy. But while the foreign minister, Lene Espersen, stated in an interview that Denmark would set aside the North Pole as a nature reserve, the claim was absent from the report. The Copenhagen Post 


HarperHarper Adds $60M to Arctic Health Program. Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced $60 million Thursday to keep an Arctic health care program going for another two years. On a visit to Yellowknife on his annual Arctic tour, Harper said many northerners face unique health-care challenges because of their distance from doctors and other health-care workers and their higher rates of certain diseases. The $60 million will extend a program called the Territorial Health System Sustainability Initiative, which was launched six years ago to improve health care across the North. The program will now carry on until 2014. CBC News 


Russian Icebreaker to Help U.S. Scientists in Antarctic. A Russian icebreaker will assist U.S. polar explorers in escorting convoys of cargo ships with supplies for U.S. research stations in Antarctica, the U.S. National Science Foundation said. A one year contract for the use of the Vladimir Ignatyuk diesel icebreaker stipulates that the vessel will maintain an open water canal in the ice floe covering the McMurdo Bay to ensure timely deliveries of cargoes, especially fuel, to the McMurdo Station and the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station. RIA Novosti  

Legislative Actionfutureevents  


No Arctic legislation was formally considered yesterday.


Future Events                     


9th International Symposium on Permafrost Engineering, September 3-7, 2011. The Melnikov Permafrost Institute (Yakutsk, Russia), the Institute of Northern Mining (Yakutsk, Russia), the Cold and Arid Regions Engineering and Environmental Research Institute (Lanzhou, China), and the Heilongjiang Institute of Cold Region Engineering (Harbin, China) will host the Ninth International Symposium on Permafrost Engineering to be held in Mirny, Yakutia. The aim of the Symposium is to provide a forum for discussion of permafrost engineering issues, as well as for exchanging practical experience in construction and maintenance of engineering structures on frozen ground. For additional information, please contact Lilia Prokopieva. 


Northern Research Forum 6th Open Assembly, September 4-6, 2011. "Our Ice Dependent World," organized by the Northern Research Forum and its partners as the Northern Research Forum 6th Open Assembly, will be hosted by the University of Akureyri in the town of Hverager