Transportation Infrastructure in Russia’s changing Arctic

Authors: Rylin A McGee*, University of Richmond
Topics: Transportation Geography, Russia, Polar Regions
Keywords: Russia, Arctic, Development, Climate Change, Transportation
Session Type: Poster
Day: 4/4/2019
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Lincoln 2, Marriott, Exhibition Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded

According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, in recent years many sub-regions of the Arctic continue to show the most rapid rates of temperature rise. A warming Arctic creates landscape scale changes with important ramifications for conservation and development. Such is the case in Russia, where approximately a third of the country’s territory lies North of the Arctic Circle. This Russian Arctic is rich in mineral and natural resources, and will likely be at the forefront of Russia’s economic development in years to come. While resource rich, much of Russia’s northern territory lacks adequate transportation infrastructure to support rapid development in the region. However, Russia recently announced its intention to expand its use of nuclear icebreakers on the Northern Sea Route, citing a goal of transporting 80 million tons of cargo by 2024, a project which will require an expansion of existing infrastructure. This study explores the challenges and opportunities presented by a changing climate on current and future transportation infrastructure in Russia’s Arctic.

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