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Aug 18

Examining Arctic Opportunities and Capabilities: Does the U.S. Have the Infrastructure, Ships and Equipment Required?

On April 24, 2015 the United States began a two-year term as Chairman of the Arctic Council. The Council is composed of eight Member States: Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden, and the U.S. Clearly, the capabilities of these eight countries to operate in the Arctic differ quite significantly. As Arctic opportunities arise, so, too, has the interest of an increasing number of non-Arctic countries. Twelve countries have been deemed Arctic Council “Observers:” the People’s Republic of China, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, India, Britain, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, and Spain. Several of these “Observers” are also actively developing and advancing their potential Arctic operations capability.

The United States, under its Chairmanship over the next 20 months, will have numerous policy questions worthy of examination and assessment. Can any Arctic policy be sustained without enduring U.S. capabilities? Does change in the Arctic region encourage other countries to become more actively operational in the area? While the U.S. has the capability to operate around much of the globe, does it really have a robust ability to be a presence in the Arctic? How might the U.S. better operate side-by-side with Arctic allies? Are Arctic Council “Observer” nations already more capable of Arctic operations than the U.S.? Join us for a most timely and important discussion.

More About the Speakers

Keynote Remarks by
Admiral Robert J. Papp, Jr., USCG (Ret.)
Special Representative for the Arctic, U.S. Department of State

Hosted by
James Jay Carafano, Ph.D.
Vice President, Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy, and the E. W. Richardson Fellow, The Heritage Foundation

Followed by a Discussion with
H.E. Geir Haarde
Ambassador of Iceland to the United States and former Prime Minister

Isaac Edwards
Senior Counsel for Chairman Murkowski, U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources

Luke Coffey
Margaret Thatcher Fellow, Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom, The Heritage Foundation

Moderated by
James E. Dean
Manager, International and Diplomatic Programs, The Heritage Foundation