Sustainable Development of the Arctic: Approaches to Monitoring and Assessment

Sustainable Development of the Arctic: Approaches to Monitoring and Assessment

Liudmila Lapochkina (Northern (Arctic) Federal University, Russia) and Elena Vetrova (Saint Petersburg State University of Economics, Russia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-6954-1.ch018

Abstract

Circumpolar territories and the regions related to the Arctic are those rich with natural resources. They have a high potential for the development of mining and extractive industries. The abundance with resources makes the North increasingly attractive for investments. However, circumpolar territories are characterized by peculiar socio-economic, natural, and climatic conditions which taken together frequently pose a negative impact on people and hinder the exploration opportunities of the Arctic resources. In global, regional, and sub-regional levels, the development of the Arctic is heavily regulated by multilateral international treaties. However, the issues of monitoring and assessment of the sustainable development of the Arctic remain open, which stems from the absence of agreed criteria and indicators for assessing sustainability in the context of national, regional, and scientific approaches. It necessitates the development of a specific methodological approach to the establishment of a system to monitor and assess the sustainable development of the Arctic.
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Background

Arctic territories include eight Nordic countries – Iceland, Denmark (Greenland), Norway, Canada, the USA, Russia, Finland, and Sweden. Development of Arctic territories also involves, in varying degrees, member states of the European Union (EU) (France, Germany, Poland, and others) and counties of the Asia-Pacific Region (APR) (Singapore, the Republic of Korea, China, Japan, and India). This creates a picture of the Arctic as a region of global cooperation, resource reserves, ecosystem, and transportation system (Kharlampieva, 2014; Dodin, 2005).

At the beginning of the XXI century, the Arctic became a key region possessing both strategic communications and global resources. The Arctic's hydrocarbon potential is of great importance for the development of the world and national economies, but its efficient and safe exploitation is impossible without developing international cooperation, primarily between the countries that have immediate access to the Arctic Ocean. In such cooperation, a very important role is played by the coordination of the participants' activities and safeguarding their strategic interests. The Arctic region's peculiarities in the context of climatic, ecological, and geological characteristics generate considerable risks associated with the exploration and exploitation of its potential.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Strategic Attractiveness of the Development Projects in the Arctic: A potential efficiency of the establishment of cooperation relationships, development of integration processes, exploration of new markets, development of the Arctic territories, and increase in the living standards of the people.

Economic Security of the Arctic: An aggregation of internal and external factors (conditions, potentials) of effective functioning of the region that reflect its ability to maintain sufficient economic growth and high standards of living as well as provide a certain degree of protection.

Tactical Attractiveness of the Development Projects in the Arctic: An efficiency of interaction in the current proceedings within the frames of the existing and planned agreements, contracts, obligations, and responsibilities.

Sustainable Development of the Arctic Zone: A resource exploitation approach that provides a possibility to preserve the Arctic ecosystem as well as promote overall development of northern territories and increase their investment attractiveness.

Risks for Sustainable Development: The risks from the point of view of the functional and stakeholder approaches.

Risks for Sustainable Development of the Arctic: A probability of decline in the attractiveness of the Arctic projects and failure to achieve the goals set by the stakeholders due to their incongruence, increase in profit loss, as well as negative synergetic effects of the integration caused by geopolitical, organizational, managerial, technological, scientific, engineering, and other factors.

Collaborating Relationships of the Participants of the Arctic Projects: The relations between stakeholders of the Arctic projects and other interested parties which establish a basis for sustainable development of the Arctic.

Concept of a System for Monitoring and Assessment of Sustainable Development of the Arctic: The approaches, principles, the algorithm of formation, and assessment methods.

System for Monitoring of Sustainable Development of the Arctic: A system for monitoring and assessment of the risks for sustainable development.

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