Thursday, February 01, 2007

Climate Change Upside: A Longer Growing Season. Climate Change Downside: Russians, Lots And Lots Of Russians

In his TO Sun column today, Lorrie Goldstein announces blithely that, as a result of Global Warming, Canada is:

...likely to benefit from a longer growing season, something politicians don't dare even mention in the current climate of political hype.

Which may or may not be true. After all, it doesn't matter how long your growing season is if its all one big drought.

On the other hand, as the arctic ice melts, circumpolar nations are rushing to make territorial claims in hopes of cashing in on whatever oil/mineral wealth the area might one day yield:

In 2001, Russia made the first move, staking out virtually half the Arctic Ocean, including the North Pole. But after challenges by other nations, including the United States, Russia sought to bolster its claim by sending a research ship north to gather more geographical data. On Aug. 29, it reached the pole without the help of an icebreaker - the first ship ever to do so.

And the mounties are getting ready for an influx of marine traffic:

Looking to the future [...] "Canada's north could become warmer and more hospitable to marine traffic, posing new security challenges" and that "climate refugees [are] a potential issue".

So we'll be farming bananas up on Baffin Island with one hand, but we'll be fighting off Russkies with the other. Pity Harper's promise to build a fleet of armed arctic ice-breakers seems to have gone out the window. The armed part might still be necessary, even if the ice-breaking part isn't.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

careful those large pieces of falling sky don't frappe you on the noggin.