Defense Secretary Robert Gates Eyes Stronger US-Russia Ties. Defense Secretary Robert Gates arrived in St. Petersburg on Monday with hopes of strengthening U.S.-Russian cooperation, while a coalition of forces from around the world establishes a no-fly zone over Libya, an endeavor in which he promised the United States would not take on the lead role or be committed to action indefinitely. "One of the things that was very much on the President's mind is the importance of a meaningful coalition, meaning other countries making serious military contributions so the United States isn't carrying the preeminent responsibility for an indefinite period of time," Gates said while traveling to Russia. "One limitation, obviously, on the part of the president was no boots on the ground." Politico
CBO Predicts Larger Deficits Under Obama's Fiscal 2012 Budget. President Obama's fiscal 2012 budget would add $2 trillion more to the deficit over the next decade than the White House has claimed, the Congressional Budget Office said Friday. In a preliminary analysis, the agency said the budget would ring up cumulative deficits of $9.5 trillion over the next 10 years if it was enacted, more than the $7.2 trillion estimated by the White House. Congressional Quarterly
Bear Patrol to Monitor Arctic Region. A spring operation to protect the polar bear and to observe its migration has started in Russia. The organizers are WWF (World Wildlife Fund)-Russia and the Marine Mammal Council. Special patrol groups, including inspectors of natural reserves, polar station employees, and, of course, local residents, on a huge territory along the Arctic coast, from the Barents Sea to the Bering Strait, have started watching the polar bear population, Viktor Nikiforov, the head of the WWF-Russia pilot projects, says. Voice of Russia
Warmer Arctic Could Disrupt Animal-Disease Balance. Climate change in the Arctic could change the balance of power between humans, animals and the germs or pathogens that make them both sick, according to a paper by University of Alaska Fairbanks microbiologist Karsten Hueffer. Sit News
Canadian Space Business Group Mulls Arctic Sovereignty and Small Satellites. The University of Toronto is hoping to cash in on the growing demand for micro-space technology by selling more of the small satellites it makes at its flight laboratory. The mini-satellites - the size of a suitcase or even smaller - have already been sold to countries like Norway, Australia and Poland. They start at $600,000 and can fetch more than $3 million. The Canadian Press
King Crabs Invade Antarctica. Sven Thatje has been predicting an invasion of deep-water crabs into shallow Antarctic waters for the past several years. But the biologist and his colleagues got their first look at the march of the seafloor predators while riding on an icebreaker across frozen Antarctic seas this winter. The ship towed a robot sub carrying a small digital camera that filmed the seafloor below. It caught images of bright red king crabs up to 10 inches long, moving into an undersea habitat of creatures that haven't seen sharp teeth or claws for the past 40 million years. The Washington Post.