Strategies in the Arctic: Ilmplications for Small States Dr. Lassi Heininen University of Lapland, Finland Northern Research Forum Intensive Summer Course 2011 University of Iceland, Reykjavik The early-21st century Arctic Main themes / trends of the post-Cold War circumpolar geopolitics and IR: 1) Increasing circumpolar coop by indigenous peoples’ organizations and sub-national governments 2) Region-building with unified states as major actors 3) New kind of relationship between the circumpolar North and the outside world (Arctic Human Development Report, 2004) Special features of Northern security • Technology models of geopolitics • Nuclear safety • Interrelations between the environment and security / the military • Relations between Indigenous peoples and security / the military • Climate change and other environ problems • (Global) Energy security Nuclear safety • Radioactivity as a local and regional pollutant, and an example of environmental ‘awakening’ • Risk and threat – military and civilian • Became a special issue for and in international Arctic cooperation between Arctic states • E.g. AEPS, BEAC, AMEC, MNEP • Caused a change in problem definition on security discourse and premise in the Arctic • But how real was / is the change? Behind: First significant geopolitical change • The ultimate aim of state politics: to decrease military tension and increase political stability • From state hegemony and power politics into sophisticated policy, esp. cooperation on environ protection • The used means: trans-boundary cooperation and region- building… • .. and new ‘soft’ institutions - e.g. Arctic Council • As a result: decreased military and political tension, and increased stability and peace From confrontation to cooperation • A success story – ‘Mission accomplished!’ Behind: New concepts of security • The very meaning of security was extended (in discourses) beyond traditional concerns with ‘military’ threats and national security to focus on environmental and human problems • Different discourses and concepts of security with different premises and paradigms • Due to e.g. long-range air and water pollution, nuclear safety and climate change The early-21st century Arctic continues.. • A peaceful region with high stability based on a wide intergovernmental and regional cooperation • No conflicts, but disputes on maritime borders and asymmetric environmental conflicts • Major challenges e.g. climate change and long-range air and water pollution, and globalization • Legally and politically divided by national borders and internal waters (of the Arctic states) • Major military structures (nuclear weapon systems) and capability for national defence are still there • Importance of national interests The Arctic States • The role and position of the Arctic states was changed due to the first geopolitical change – the A8+ was defined • The five littoral states with their ministerial ad hoc meetings – the A5 was defined (and the Arctic redefined?) • The states emphasize the importance of the AC but have their own interests, agendas, priorities and policies • They have recently also accepted their arctic/northern strategy/policy • A state still the most important actor in the Arctic, but .. • .. there are new actors (with their interests) and challenges as well as threats --- The post-Cold War period is over!? Arctic states: summary of the priorities - Sovereignty and national defence: Five littoral states - Comprehensive security: Finland, Iceland and Sweden - Economic development: All the strategies - Regional development and infra: Most of the strategies - Transportation: Finland, Iceland, Russia and USA -- Aviation: Iceland and Russia - Environment: Most of the strategies - Governance: All the strategies -- Safety/Rescue: Finland, Iceland, Norway and Russia – Peoples/Indigenous peoples: Most of the strategies – Science/Scientific coop: Most of the strategies Arctic states: main priorities / objectives Sove/ Econ/ Trans Envir Gov Peo/ Scien Can x x+x x x x DK/Gr x x+x x x Fin /x x+x x x x /x x Ice /x x x x x+x x x Nor x x+x x x+x /x x Rus x x+x x x+x /x x Swe x x x x/x USA x x x x x x (Heininen, Arctic Strategies & Policies: Inventory & Comparative Study, 2011) International Cooperation - UNs: Canada, Den&Green, Finland, Sweden, USA - UNCLOS: Canada, Den&Green, Finland, Swe, USA, EU - IMO: Canada, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, EU - AC: All the strategies - EU: Den&Green, Finland, Iceland, Russia, Sweden - EU’s ND: Den&Green, Fin, Ice, Nor, Swe, EU - Nordic: Den&Green, Fin, Ice, Nor, Swe - BEAC: Fin, Ice, Nor, Rus, Swe, EU Self-identification and (re)definition as an Arctic / Northern country / nation / power – Canada: “the global leader in Arctic science; “The North is central to the Canadian national identity” – Den&Green: the Kingdom as a “major player in the Arctic” – Finland: as an “Arctic country is a natural actor in the Arctic region” – Iceland: “the only country located entirely within the Arctic region” – Norway: “the High North is gradually becoming more synonymous with the Arctic”…“really a Norwegian perspective” – Russia: to “maintain the role of a leading Arctic power” – Sweden: “there are many connections to tie Sweden to the Arctic” – USA: an “Arctic nation” Finland • Strategy for the Arctic Region, adopted by the Finnish Cabinet Committee on European Union of the Gvt. (June 2010) • The main substantial sectors of the Strategy: – The environment (‘fragile Arctic nature’) – Economic activity and know-how – Transport and infrastructure – Indigenous peoples Interesting findings • Comprehensive and wide (global) perspective • Emphasizes the Arctic as a stable and peaceful area • Recognizes the special features and risks of the fragile arctic ecosystem; supports research as a basis for decision-making • Highest priorities of the Strategy appear to be economic interests (esp. marine traffic and infrastructure) • --- Is there a contradiction? • Supports indigenous participation in international cooperation (no ratification of ILO 169 Convention) • Emphasizes the importance of the multilateral northern cooperation, and supports the AC as the main forum.. • .. and the role (and importance) of the EU in the Arctic region Iceland • ‘Iceland in the High North’ published by the Icelandic MFA (September 2009) • ‘Parliamentary Resolution on Iceland’s Arctic Policy’ with twelve principles (March 2011) • The six highlights of the Report are: – International cooperation – Security through international cooperation – Resource development and environ protection – Transportation – People and cultures – Inter coop on research and monitoring Interesting findings • No emphasis on sovereignty, but rather on international, multilateral and regional cooperation • Security and (maritime) safety through international and scientific cooperation • Emphasis on the importance of resource development, incl. renewable energy and fishing industry; less emphasis on environmental protection • Visions and strong expectations of global trans-arctic shipping routes, and aviation – a potential trans-shipment hub • Emphasis on inter coop on research and higher education • Iceland located “entirely within the Arctic region” – a response to the ad hoc meetings of five littoral states Sweden • A Strategy for policy in the Arctic region (Sveriges strategi för den arktiska regionen), adopted by the Swedish Government in May 2011 • The three areas, which are defined as the priorities: - climate and the environment - economic development - the human dimension Interesting findings • Adopted and launched at the same day, when Sweden started its chairmanship of the AC • Much the same priorities (lack of time or ?) • Among the three priorities economic development, much oil and gas, is the most rich and multifunctional, even some sort of top, priority of the Strategy • The Strategy also clearly states that multilateral cooperation in, and dealing with, the Arctic is the main priority for Sweden New threats, challenges or change(s)? Behind: another significant change, or potential threat • A significant multifunctional - environmental, geoeconomic and geopolitical - change has occurred at the early-21st • E.g. growing global interest toward the region and its rich natural resources • E.g. a manifold growth in the geo-strategic importance of the region • Among indicators of the change climate change, energy security, sovereignty (Ilulissat meeting), globalization Reflection/response to the change(s) • Canada: yes • Denmark&Greenland: yes, and no (self-governing) • Finland: yes • Iceland: yes • Norway: not really (Russia) • Russia: no (pragmatic means for domestic politics) • Sweden: yes • USA: yes -- Global perspective incl: Den&Green and Finland Indicators of the recent change • Climate change and its (physical) impacts • Utilization of natural resources (e.g. shelf of the AO) • Energy security, and options of that • Transportation (e.g. global sea and air routes) • Globalization and flows of globalization • Growing global interest toward the region by powers from outside the region • Growing interest of, and activity by, the Arctic states to (re)define their national interests, and… • … (re)emphasize state sovereignty Globalization in the Arctic • Globalization bringing problems to the North!? • Negative: impacts of climate change, privatization, modernity (‘Cola-Colanization’), new isms, weakening of nation-states’ ability to protect its northern communities (sovereignty) from new threat • Positive: decolonization and growth of regional autonomy, recognition of indigenous peoples’ rights, emphasis on the rule of law and multilateral environ initiatives, new ICT, ‘diversity’ as a global value (Globalization and the Circumpolar North, 2010) Global problems in the Arctic - Global relations are nothing new - e.g. fur trade, whaling, sealing, and colonialism, exploration, (pre)industrialization - Global security problems – e.g. militarization and nuclear weapon system - Global environ problems: long-range air and water pollution, esp. nuclear safety, and environmental ’awakening’ - Also growing consciousness of own identity, world-wide approach by indigenous peoples, democratization, self- government and regionalization (Globalization and the Circumpolar North, 2010) Climate change • Climate change as a global environmental problem (with its physical impacts and the associated ‘uncertainty’) • Thus, it has a relevant security dimension – either a danger, risk or uncertain thing, threat or challenge • Climate change has already caused a change in Northern geopolitics and problem definition on security discourse(s), and has potential to cause that on security premise(s) • What about security paradigm, or, is climate change a new discipline for ‘disciplining’? • To remind that ‘nuclear safety’ already caused a change in security discourse(s) and premise(s) at the late of 1990s!
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