Internasjonal Politikk, Vol 68, No 2, 2010, pp. 183-204. In Norwegian
The Arctic and High North are enjoying a renaissance. According to some observers, interest in the region’s natural resources could take on a military aspect. As the receding ice cap initiates a run for possession of whatever natural resources lie beneath the Arctic Ocean, will it bring us to the brink of a new Cold War? Will unresolved legal issues and deteriorating foreign relations in the wake of climate change create the conditions for armed conflict rather than diplomatic resolution? In this article, climate change, socio-economic consequences and questions of security are addressed. The purpose is to show that a fruitful analysis of security policy challenges in the north must rest on an insight into the international legal framework on which co-existence in the region rests, the variability in climate change projections, socio-economic challenges and opportunities and a sober realpolitik analysis. The article concludes that a description of the situation as «an armed mad dash for resources» seems rather overdrawn.