Center for American Progress "The region—which encompasses 17 percent of the globe and is almost one and a half times the size of the United States—is warming two times faster than any other region on Earth." by Anne Shoup
'Today, after Secretary of State John Kerry called climate change in
the Arctic “one of the most obvious shared challenges facing the planet
today,” the Center for American Progress released an analysis
detailing why the United States needs to take the lead on reining in
climate change in the Arctic and globally and addressing the
environmental, economic, and national security implications of warming
in the High North.
'Secretary Kerry has an immediate opportunity to implement his new
climate change Policy Guidance as he begins setting priorities now for
his upcoming leadership position as the 2015–2017 Arctic Council Chair.
In this role, he can drive an ambitious agenda focused on putting the
brakes on climate change by cutting black carbon and methane emissions
and promoting renewable energy use. As part of this agenda, Secretary
Kerry should seek to conserve invaluable Arctic marine and coastal
environments and promote sustainable Arctic development that will boost
the resilience and prosperity of Arctic communities.
'“Focusing on new commercial opportunities in a melting Arctic without
recognizing the catastrophic consequences of Arctic warming is akin to
refinancing your home as it burns to the ground,” said Cathleen Kelly,
Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. “As the driving
force behind the growing commercial interests and environmental and
safety threats in the region, and escalating damages and costs of
floods, droughts, heat waves, and other extreme weather events around
the globe, climate change must be at the center of the U.S. Arctic
Council agenda when Secretary Kerry becomes the Chairman in 2015.”'