Eight nations—the United States included—have a geographically direct stake in the opening of the resource-rich Arctic. Increased international cooperation is a must.
Changing conditions in the Arctic Ocean, including diminished sea ice, warming sea surface temperatures, and increasing maritime traffic, may require affected governments to take new steps to enhance their collaboration in the region. Those same changing conditions may also require governments to devote greater assets to preserve maritime security and assist in energy, environmental, and economic security. Through the Arctic Council, some work has been done in discrete areas (search and rescue, as well as oil-pollution preparedness and response), but there is more to do. Here we propose possible additional areas for international collaboration toward a common goal: preserving and protecting the Arctic marine environment and its resources while managing the balance of increased development, economic benefit, and related security interests.