The Arctic is emerging as an important region in global affairs and a promising frontier for energy development. With an estimated 25 percent of the world’s undiscovered oil and gas reserves, and with climate change making shorter maritime routes through Arctic waters possible, the region is attracting increased attention for its commercial potential. However, the effects of climate change and increased human activity in the region are likely to pose important challenges to its fragile ecosystem and indigenous communities.
On June 12, the Energy Security Initiative at Brookings hosted a discussion marking the start of an 18-month research project on the challenges and opportunities of Arctic development. Panelists discussed the various international approaches to Arctic energy and natural resource development as well as energy and natural resource development in Alaska.
After each panel, participants took audience questions.