See all the ICE Cases
Deploy the ICE Search and Sort Tool (SST)
Go To ICE Expert Site

 

ICE Case Studies:

Number 224,

10 December, 2010

Greenland and Climate Change

By: Kelley Hamrick

 

 

Table of Contents:

I. Greenland Background
II. A Brief History
III. Predicted Climatic Effects
IV. Possible Future Conflict
V. Related Information and Sources

 


Line Break

I. Overview

Abstract
The Arctic will be a reputed winner from climate change. With rising temperatures, the area could see a surge in agriculture, freshwater availability and hydropower, shipping routes, and economic exploitation of minerals, natural gas, and oil. Yet with these benefits come risks - of losing traditional culture and of increased propensity for conflict. While considering the future effects of climate change, Greenland should consider the risks and consequences of their actions. For just like climate change, today's political and economic actions will reverberate in the future.

 

 

Greenland Snow
© Kelley Hamrick
Kangerlussuaq Town
© Kelley Hamrick

Greenland is a land of extremes. It is the world's largest island, yet houses the world's fewest people per square kilometer (.026). [1] The world's second largest ice cap dominates 81% of the country  and continuous permafrost covers 2/3rds of the island. [2]

Only 57,000 people live in this land of ice, mostly along the coastlines and concentrated in the cities. Almost 25% of the population lives in the capital Nuuk. The population is primarily indigenous, consisting of 89% Inuits and 11% Danes and others. Yet the Inuits do not have complete control over their government; Greenland has home rule in national union with Denmark. [3] This means that the Greenlandic government provides most services and decisions within the island, but it defers to Denmark for foreign affairs and defense in most cases. A major exception was when Greenland chose to voluntarily leave the EU. Greenland had initially joined the EU against the will of its citizens in 1973; this led to political protests and was one of the driving forces behind Greenlandic Home Rule referendum in 1979. The new government held a referendum and Greenland became the only country to leave the EU in 1985.

With such an inhospitable environment, almost no arable land or economic development, and a limited international presence, Greenland has often fallen off the radar screen of most nations. However, climate change has been, at the risk of sounding redundant, changing this long held disinterest. Greenland has been the site of some of the most important climate change research to date: studies of its ice core dust and stable water isotopes has provided reliable insight into past temperatures and precipitation - and provide evidence of an increasingly warming weather trend. [4] In addition to providing historical data, Greenland also serves as a case study of existing climate-induced changes, as its fragile ecosystem makes it particularly vulnerable to temperature increases. As a result, Greenland is one of the first countries to experience climate change: both its challenges and its advantages.

Greenland Sunset
© Kelley Hamrick

Duration: Not Yet Applicable
There is potential for conflict in the future; however, this depends largely on migration patterns from other countries and increased economic activity within Greenland. As of yet, the potential for oil, natural gas, and minerals is largely speculated; little actual drilling has occurred. It is unknown when that may begin to increase -- perhaps the costs of drilling will always remain too costly to be profitable.

Based on historical tensions and their resolution, any conflict is likely to result in greater political separation from Denmark. For many Greenlanders, the ideal is complete independance from the Danish state; however, they currently lack the ecnomic means to sustain themselves without Danish grants.

Actual fighting is highly improbable.

Location:
Continent: Polar Region/North America
Region: Arctic
Country: Greenland

 

 

 

 

Actors: Greenland

On a national level, Greenland and Denmark are the main actors. The Arctic countries may also become involved in certain issues, such as shipping. The indigenous and non-indigenous Greenlanders are actors, as well as any foreign companies looking to invest in Greenland.

 

 

 

 

Back to Top.



Line Break

II. A Brief History

Though home to some of the world's oldest rocks, permanent human settlements in Greenland are both recent and sporadic [5]. Indigenous people tended to arrive in waves; as the Arctic groups are very nomadic, they would leave if resources or the climate became too unfavorable.

The earliest cultures to arrive in Greenland were the Saqqac and Independence I, appearing around 2500 and 2400 BCE. These cultures were highly mobile, so when resources grew scarce or the climate became too harsh, they would migrate to other Arctic regions. The Independence II culture appeared around approximately 800 or 600 BCE and lasted to 400-200 BCE. They were proceeded by the Dorset cultures, which arrived and left in three waves (the latest from 500 - 1500 CE). The most recent indigenous peoples, the Thules, arrived around 1200 and left in 1400's, before returning as the originators of today's Inuit population in the 1700's.[6]

Possibly coming into contact with the Dorset or Thule cultures, the Vikings were the first Europeans to arrive in Greenland in 985 CE. Their settlement, lasting until 1408 CE, has become a case study for scholars of conflict and environment linkages. Environmental degradation and the onset of the Little Ice Age led to the decline of the Norse settlement, yet did not kill off the nearby Thule settlements. This has led to varying theories: about different adaptation methods used by the two cultures and about the probable conflict between the two groups over scarcer resources. [7]

The European whaling industry revisited the island occasionally after that, but it was largely ignored until the Danish-Norwegian Lutheran minister Hans Egede arrived in 1721, searching for any remaining Norse civilization. Even though he found no remaining Europeans, Denmark Norway (the monarchies agreed to a union) decided to colonize the Inuits there. [8]

The country was largely undeveloped and left alone until WWII, when Denmark became occupied by Germany. Greenlandic officials declared themselves a self-ruling territory and sought American military assistance to defend the island. The American's viewed Greenland as place of military strategic interest, not only during WWII, but also in the Cold War that immediately followed. They even offered to buy the island for $100,000,000 in 1946. [9] Instead, the Danes allowed the Americans to establish a military base at Thule in 1951. Perhaps in response to this increased U.S. interest, Greenland was made an integral part of Denmark in 1953. Since then, more efforts have been made to modernize the country. All citizens became entitled to the same healthcare, education, and civil rights as Danes.

In 1979, the island took its next step towards independence, when Denmark granted it Home Rule. [10] Home Rule increased the self-governing abilities of the Greenlandic government in local policies; however, sub-surface rights, defense, and most foreign affairs were still controlled primarily by Denmark. However, Greenland did start to participate more in the international arena, such as the Inuit Circumpolar Council. Greenland also voted to leave the EEC (which it had joined with Denmark it 1973) after a dispute on fishing quotas and a ban on sealskin.

Lastly, in 2008, Greenland voted on a referendum on greater autonomy [11]. This allows Greenland to determine its own police and judicial affairs, national language (now solely Greenlandic, instead of Greenlandic and Danish), and natural resources. Foreign affairs and defense are still controlled by Denmark, and Denmark will continue to give annual aid of 3.2 billion Danish kroner to Greenland. However, if Greenland starts profiting off of minerals or gas, 50% of the profit will be reallocated to pay part of the Danish grant money. In the future, if Greenland makes enough profit off of its natural resources and doesn't require Danish aid, the island may seek independence. Based on past independence initiatives, it is likely that the measure would be supported by Denmark; however, there is a possibility that increasing wealth in Greenland could cause conflict.

 

Back to Top.

Line Break


III. Predicted Climatic Effects:

"Climate change in polar regions is expected to be among the largest and most rapid of any region on the Earth, and will cause major physical, ecological, sociological, and economic impacts, especially in the Arctic, Antarctic Peninsula, and Southern Ocean (high confidence)." [12]

Type of Environmental Problem:
The Arctic is particularly vulnerable to climate change: due to its thinner atmosphere, albedo effect, and fragile environment. The North and South Poles atmospheres are less dense than elsewhere on the globe; thus, more solar energy passes through the atmosphere and warms the ground or sea. As this warming occurs, the light-colored ice and snow melt and expose dark-colored land. Darker surfaces absorb more heat, thus leading to increasing temperatures and more melting snow and ice. This positive feedback mechanism is called the albedo effect. [13]

Type of Habitat: Polar
Home to only arctic and sub-arctic environments, Greenland is highly susceptible to global warming. Its flora and fauna have evolved to survive in harsh, cold climates; if the temperatures increase, those that can will migrate further north to stay. However, Greenland is also home to the world's northernmost point of land: after that point, species cannot continue further in hopes of a colder climate.

Act and Harm Sites: Greenhous Gas Emitters -- Greenland
Greenland's fragile environment has made it one of the first countries to experience climate change; and it will likely become one of the country's most affected by climate change in the next century. As is the case with many other areas predicted to be hardest hit by climate change, Greenland has contributed very little to the world's greenhouse gas emissions. Instead, it must face the effects caused by the major historic and current global emitters.



Click on the icons to see what effects climate change may have...


Icon Map
Oil Icon © Kelley Hamrick

Skip to IV: Possible Future Conflict

Back to Top.

Line Break

 

 


Greenland's Melting Ice and Permafrost

This map depicts the melting ice sheet (in orange).

http://hungerreport.org/2010/report/chapters/four/making-the-connections

 

A thinning ice sheet and melting permafrost are already resulting from climate change.

Permafrost:
Permafrost temperatures have increased by as little as several tenths of a degree to as much as 2-3 C in different areas since the 1970s. In this century, permafrost degradation will increase; as much as 10-20% will be affected by climate change. [14] Melting permafrost releases CO2; so the more permafrost that melts, the more temperatures will climb and cause more permafrost melting.

Greenland's southernmost area of permafrost is predicted to recede by several hundred kilometers in the next century. Permafrost degradation can damage the infrastructure built upon it; roads, bridges, pipelines, utilities, buildings, and airstrips are all likely to be affected in Greenland. There is already some evidence of poor infrastructure in buildings and roads. [13] However, since the permafrost will thaw out over a long period of time, it is likely that measures can be taken to prevent or minimize most of the damage. 

Ice:
Sea, lake, and river ice have also been decreasing. Spring and summer sea ice has decreased by 10-15% since the 1950's [12], and winter ice extent has decreased by 10%. Additionally, there has been a reduction of two weeks in annual lake and river ice cover. In the future, the ice thickness is projected to decrease by .06 meters for every increase 1 C; this will translate into an increase of open water for 7.5 days for every increase in 1 C. [14]

Less sea ice will allow ships to continue for longer periods of time, which could be advantageous for the economy.

However, Inuits who live in remote villages rely heavily on thick ice cover so they can cross the ice with dog sleds. Dog sleds allow these Inuit to hunt and to visit other remotes settlements, as there is often no infrastructure in the region. In recent years, Inuit hunters have had to appeal to the Greenlandic government for dog food, as they couldn't take their dogs out to hunt and the dogs were starving. [15] Lastly, several animals key to the Inuit hunters' culture and diet will also be affected by thinner sea ice. In particular, the ringed seal and polar bears find it increasingly difficult to survive in these conditions. Thus, Inuit hunters will find their method transportation less reliable and their targeted species scarcer.

Back to Map.

World's Water Resources

This map reflects the total available freshwater in the world.

http://maps.grida.no/library/files/freshwater-resources-volume-by-continent_thumbnail_005.jpg

Greenland holds the 2nd largest amount of freshwater reserves in the world.

Currently, most of the freshwater is inaccessible due to its frozen state. However, with increasing temperatures comes increasing snow and glacier melting. As mentioned previously, the albedo effect will also intensify the snow and glacier melt.

Furthermore, Greenland is predicted to experience an increase of 10-50% in precipitation; leading to even larger water reserves. This precipitation will occur primarily in the north; no significant increase is expected in southeast Greenland. [14]

These large amounts of freshwater may prove beneficial in multiple ways: Greenland can construct hydroelectric plants to gain low-carbon energy for either its citizens or to sell as off-sets to higher carbon countries. (Greenland has not constructed many such plants yet, as they require high start up costs and the amount of energy generated would exceed the population's demand. However, if mining, oil, or other countries begin arriving in Greenland, these plans may become reality.) [16]

Another possibility for the excess water could be to bottle and sell it. This is a relatively novel idea; only one company is currently pursuing it. The company, Iceberg Canada Corporation, began bottling glacier water in 2009; after its 18 month arrangement with the Greenlandic government ends, the government will review and possible extend the deal. Such a decision could affect the three other businesses hoping to export ice and water and perhaps spark a new industry in Greenland. [17]

Back to Map.

Arctic Economic Map

This map details existing industrial activities in Arctic countries.

http://maps.grida.no/go/graphic/towns-and-industrial-activities-in-the-arctic

 

 

Of all the Arctic countries, Greenland remains one of the most undeveloped; right now, it relies almost exclusively on its fishing economy. However, if trends in other Arctic countries are any indication, increased investment in oil and gas, and new shipping routes will likely open the country to further development.


How the Greenlandic government chooses to respond to these opportunities will be important to note. After the 2008 referendum for Home Rule, Greenland's government now has greater control over the country's natural resources. The government has expressed its interest in exploiting these resources; however, whether it encourages development in a sustainable manner remains to be seen. [9]

 

 

Back to Map.

 

Greenland Increasing Temperatures

This map depicts the warming temperatures in Greenland from 1988-2006. The yellow/orange areas denote 0-15 days where Greenland experienced above average temperatures, and the orange/red areas denote a 16-30 day above average temperatures.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20976034/

The temperature in Greenland has been increasing at a faster rate than most Northern Hemisphere countries. During the past century, data shows that areas north of 60 N experienced 50% greater temperature rises (.06 C average versus .09 C average) than the rest of the Northern Hemisphere. [12] It is projected that temperatures could rise by 2 C in southern Greenland, but could rise an astounding 6-10 C (during winter) in the northern, northeastern, and western areas of the country by 2100. [14] Those areas would only see a slight increase in temperature during the summertime.

Rising temperatures have many direct and indirect effects. The indirect effects are explained in the other graphs in this section; however the direct effects include: increased species migration, increased tourism, and increased agricultural productivity.

  • Migration: Both caribou and musk ox may change their migration patterns based on the climate fluctuations. They may move further north as the temperatures rise.
  • Tourism: Rising temperatures and melting glaciers have enticed more tourists to visit Greenland and witness the effects firsthand. Longer summers also mean that the tourism season can stay open for longer. However, as most tourists arrive seeking an "arctic experience", they may become increasingly disappointed with their inability to spot arctic wildlife and icepack. Also, tourism is a major cause of pollution and airtravel emits lots of CO2, these tourists will indirectly increase Greenland's temperature and destroy that which they want to see.
  • Agriculture: Currently, agriculture is limited to the Southwest part of Greenland. Some crops and sheep are raised there. However, with rising temperatures, the area will experience a longer growing season. These changes will only be able to augment the few existing agricultural practices; it is unlikely that the temperature will produce such a drastic change as to make Southern Greenland a truly favorable climate towards agriculture. [13]

Back to Map.

Greenland Oil Explorations

This map details the current oil opportunities in Greenland.

http://www.arcticprogress.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/greenland-oil.gif

 

 

Greenland is not the only Arctic country home to oil reserves. In fact, it is one of the only countries currently not exploiting these resources. Russia, Canada, Alaska, and Norway already have extensive oil exploitation industries which are very profitable. The Greenlandic government began licensing offshore areas in Western Greenland in 2006; however, no drilling has actually occurred at this point. Companies are still trying to determine exactly where the oil is - but if Cairn Energy's experience is any indication of the time span needed to find oil, then drilling is not too far off. [18] The oil company announced it found oil earlier this year. The US Geological Survey estimated there to be 10-20 billion barrels of oil in Greenland. [19]


With the exploitation of oil, Greenland could become increasingly economically independent of Denmark. Whether the Nordic country would be willing to part with Greenland as it finally makes a profit instead of consuming Danish kroner is debatable. If the past is any indication, it is likely that Denmark would not have a problem with Greenlandic independence; however, the possibility of political tensions or conflict shouldn't be completely disregarded.

 

 

 

Back to Map.

Greenland Mineral Explorations

This map shows geological variations of soil and rock. Each variation indicates a strong likelihood of particular minerals.

http://www.fairjewelry.org/images/greenland_geologic_map.jpg

 

Greenland holds estimated reserves of a number of minerals, including: zinc, iron, diamonds, rubies, gold, platinum, and many rare earth metals. [13] Though these resources could prove lucrative, most of them are currently hidden beneath rock and ice. Mineral exploration is currently limited to the coastal areas, which are free of permanent ice cover. However, as rising temperatures cause more melting and glacier retreating, more areas of land could open up for development. [20]

While understandably excited about the chance for increased economic growth, the Greenland government also needs to be mindful of the views of both foreign companies and indigenous populations. There has already been rising tension over Greenland's mineral and metal extraction policy among the Inuits.

A mining company, named True North Gems, has been speculating for rubies in recent years. The company is currently trying to determine the economic viability of any long-term operations; so far, it has not yet sold any rubies. However, already problems have cropped up as between the locals, government policy, and the company. Allegedly, problems started when the True North Gems management discouraged villagers looking for rubies from entering the area under the company's exploration license. The Inuit contest that they have a right to mine the area under Section 32.

A part of Greenland's Minerals Resources Act, Section 32, states indigenous peoples have the right to access land for hunting, fishing, and mineral prospecting for their own purposes. Indigenous groups contest that they have an additional right to hand mine gems, even on legal exploration licenses of other parties -- the UN Declaration on Human Rights allows commercial exploitation of gems if the activity is a sustainable livelihood opportunity. Denmark is a signatory to the UN Declaration of Human Rights; however, under current Danish Colonial Laws, such exploitation is considered illegal.
Since then, the 16 August Union formed, and obtained over 3500 signatures (4.5% of the population) to allow sustainable small-scale mining by indigenous peoples. The Greenlandic government has begun considering the rights of native people under Section 32 and whether or not natives would have to follow the same rules and regulations of large scale mining companies. The decision could cause protests and tension with international companies if native rights are perceived to be denied. [21]

Back to Map.

Arctic Shipping Routes

This map shows possible shipping routes that could become accessible due to rising temperatures. The green line represents the Northwest Passage, which has the most potential to influence Greenland.

http://www.nato-pa.int/images/userImages/doc/3366/Map%20of%20Shipping%20routes.JPG

 

The predicted rise in temperatures will lead to longer and larger ice-free water areas. This will allow shipping to continue for an increased period of time and to begin shipping in new places. Shipping activities could involve more tourism, oil exploration, fishing, and other economic activities. [13]

Currently, from Disko Bay and further north, the sea freezes from December to April or May, and the only possible transportation is by snow mobiles or sled dogs. However, the rising temperatures will amount in shorter ice periods and open up historically closed shipping routes, like the Northwest Passage. By the mid-century, it is predicted that the Northwest Passage could be nearly ice-free; and ship traffic diverted from current routes to Arctic routes could reach 2% of global traffic by 2030 and 5% by 2050. [22] Another economic benefit of increased Arctic shipping would be the establishment of ports along western Greenland. However, this increased profitability could also cause tension among Arctic nations. Seabed claims in the North Pole and fishing rights over the Davis Strait could create difficulties in Danish-Canadian relations. [23] Such tension has already been experienced by both countries in the dispute regarding Hans Island; they both claim the island for the increased fishing and navigation rights it would give the owner. There was significant political tension and press coverage over the island between 2004-2007; while the issue has currently died down, an argument could flare up again in the future.

 

 

Back to Map.

Back to Top.

Line Break

IV. Possible Future Conflict:

Type of Conflict:
Several avenues for conflict exist, through all are unlikely to occur. The reasons for conflict would stem from resource access, natural environment changes, or border disputes. However, as mentioned previously, the fatality level of dispute remains low.

Civil conflict could occur between the indigenous populations and a growing non-indigenous population. However, as the current Home Rule government is primarily Inuit, it is not likely that any disparities (economic or social) will result between the two groups. Past tension between Denmark and Greenland has always resulted in political changes; thus, any future conflict will likely follow this pattern.

Interstate conflict could also occur, with a slightly higher likelihood (though the overall likelihood is still low). The most probably cause of such conflict would be over border disputes in the North Pole. Currently, Russia poses the biggest threat to Arctic security.

Level of Conflict: Low
Fatality Level of Dispute: Low

 

Environment-Conflict Link and Dynamics:

Starting with "Temperature", click on the boxes to see how climate change can link to conflict...

Environment-Conflict Link and Dynamics Temperature Increased Economic Opportunity Increased Natural Resource Availability Decrease in Inuit Culture Increased Migration Increased Independance Increased Conflict? Increased Tension between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous
© Kelley Hamrick

Increased Temperatures
  • Temperatures are predicted to rise 2 C in southern Greenland, and 6-10 C (during winter) in the northern, northeastern, and western areas of the country by 2100. [14]
Back to Graph.
Increased Economic Opportunities:
  • Increasing temperatures will result in the increase of melting ice.
    • In turn, this will allow easier access to Greenland's significant oil, natural gas, and mineral reserves.
    • The reduced ice may also result in more and faster shipping routes and. Coastal Greenland areas may develop into ports in the future, for US-Europe shipping.
  • Increasing temperatures will also warm the surrounding ocean.
    • Greenland's current shrimp population will migrate but be followed by the re-emergence of cod. Cod was in Greenland in the early 1900's and was much more profitable than today's shrimp, so this should also benefit the country. [13]
Back to Graph.
Increased CO2 output:
  • Once oil, gas, and mineral extraction companies enter Greenland, emission rates will skyrocket.
  • Melting permafrost has also been shown to release stored CO2. [13]
Back to Graph.
Increased Natural Resources
  • The increasing temperatures will allow crops to grow longer and will open up areas previously too cold for agriculture now. (Note: These areas will not be very significant.)
  • Greenland's freshwater resources will start to unfreeze and become available for human and agricultural consumption. It can also become profitable through hydroelectric plants or selling bottled glacier water.
  • The melting ice will allow increased exploration for minerals and oil; thus, giving prospectors a greater chance at finding such resources. This could bring a large increase to the Greenlandic economy.
Back to Graph.
Decrease in Traditional Inuit Culture:
  • The increased temperature will negatively affect the most culturally important animals to Inuit hunters, the polar bear and the ringed seal and possibly affect caribou and musk ox. They will migrate north or possible go extinct.
  • Also, the thinner ice each year means that hunters can't take their sled dogs on ice anymore. In the long run, this may also cause starvation among the northern Inuit populations. These populations rely almost exclusively on hunting for sustenance and small, isolated villages keep in contact through dog sleds. [15]
  • Therefore, the traditional Inuit food, transportation, and hunting methods are all in danger of disappearing over time. Past cultural breakdown of indigenous peoples has led to increased suicide, substance abuse, and alcoholism rates.
Back to Graph.
Independence from Denmark:
  • Right now, Greenland is still receiving economic assistance from Denmark. When Greenland starts making money from oil and gas and mineral deposits it will be able to sustain itself economically, but will Denmark be as willing to allow Greenlandic independence then? Past experience shows that a peaceful transition is most likely; however, there may be tense political opposition (or in a very unlikely scenario, military opposition).
Back to Graph.
Increased Migration:
  • With lots of available freshwater, more agriculture, and a boost in the economy, Greenland will be very attractive to countries more negatively affected by climate change. It is highly likely that more people will migrate to Greenland in the future.
Back to Graph.
Increased Tension Between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Peoples
  • Currently, Greenland has an overwhelming majority of Inuits. However, if increased migration did occur due to the availabilty of natural resources and economic opportunity, this could very well lead to tension between the indigenous and non-indigenous groups. The difficulties already experienced with the ruby mining company, True North Gems, illustrates how quickly unexpected difficulties can arise. True North Gems reiterated their position that they would abide by the laws and that the conflict was between native Greenlanders and a Danish law. However, will other international companies react the same way?
Back to Graph.
Increased Conflict?
  • Inceased conflict could result from a number of these factors: from increased migration, indigenous/non-indigenous differences, or the possible seperation from Denmark. Based on current and past models of dealing with tension, Greenland will likely deal with any tension through a political (not military) system.
Back to Graph.

 

Level of Strategic Interest: Regional
Depending on the likelihood of conflict occurring at a local, intra-state, or regional level would influence the conflict's level of strategic interest. In the largest possible conflict, major country powers such as the U.S., Russia, Canada, Norway, and Finland could all be involved in a dispute
.

Outcome of Dispute: In Progress
As the outcome of a dispute requires an initial conflict, to try and predict the outcome currently would be premature. However, given Greenland's status as a peaceful and small (population-wise) country, it is unlikely that it would win any physical or political disputes.

Back to Top.

Line Break

VI. Related Information and Sources:

Relevant TED/ICE Cases:

34 : ILULISSAT - Ilulissat Declaration: Legal Regimes to the Rescue?
220 : MACKERAL - Mackeral Migrations Patterns, Climate Change, and a New Fish War
217 : CANADA-EEZ - Expansion of Canada's EEZ
215 : ANTARCTICA - Antarctica, Ownership, and Climate Change
185 : NORTHWEST-PASSAGE Canadian Sovereignty at the Northwest Passage
140 : RUSSOIL - Russian Oil, Indigenous People and Environment

Sources:

1. "List of Sovereign States and Dependent Territories by Population Density." Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. 2 Dec. 2010. Web. 08 Dec. 2010. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_sovereign_states_and_dependent_territories_by_population_density>.

2. "Greenland." CIA - The World Factbook. 9 Nov. 2010. Web. 08 Dec. 2010. <https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/gl.html>.

3. "About Greenland." NANOQ, Government of Greenland. 12 Mar. 2010. Web. 08 Dec. 2010. <http://uk.nanoq.gl/Emner/About.aspx>.

4. "Climate Change: Evidence." Climate Change: NASA's Eyes on the Earth. NASA. Web. 08 Dec. 2010. <http://climate.nasa.gov/evidence/>.

5. Mehta, Aalok. "Oldest Known Ocean Crust Found on Greenland." National Geographic News. 22 Mar. 2007. Web. 08 Dec. 2010.
<http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/03/070322-oldest-crust.html>.

6. "The Prehistory of Greenland." SILA: The Greenland Research Centre at the National Musuem of Denmark. National Museet. Web. 08 Dec. 2010. <http://www.natmus.dk/sw18630.asp>.

7. Diamond, Jared M. Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed. New York: Viking, 2005. Print.

8. "Danish Colonization Of The Americas." Global Architects Guide. Web. 08 Dec. 2010. <http://www.globalarchitectsguide.com/library/Danish-colonization-of-the-Americas.php>.

9. Funk, McKenzie. "It's Getting Hot Up Here: Why Greenland Sees Global Warming as a Way to Gain Independence...and Make Money." The Independent. 6 Sept. 2009. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/green-living/its-getting-hot-up-here-why-greenland-sees-global-warming-as-a-way-to-gain-independenceand-make-money-1780686.html>.

10. "Regions and Territories: Greenland." BBC News. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/country_profiles/1023393.stm>.

11. "The Constitutional and Political System." International Work Group for Indigenous Affairs. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.iwgia.org/sw15470.asp>.

12. "IPCC Third Assessment Report - Climate Change 2001." UNEP/GRID-Arendal. Ed. J. McCarthy, O. Canziani, N. Leary, D. Dokken, and K. White. IPCC, 2001. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.grida.no/publications/other/ipcc_tar/?src=/climate/ipcc_tar/wg3/index.htm>.

13. Nyegaard Hvid, H. Climate Change and the Greenland Society. WWF Denmark, 2007. Print.

14. ACIA. Arctic Climate Impact Assessment. Cambridge University Press, 2005. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.acia.uaf.edu/>.

15. Cathcart, Brian. "The Greening of Greenland." New Statesman - Britain's Current Affairs & Politics Magazine. 13 Sept. 2007. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.newstatesman.com/world-affairs/2007/09/sea-ice-greenland-dogs-long>.

16. "Hydroelectric Power Potentials in Greenland." Greenland Development Inc. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.aluminium.gl/en/hydropower__aluminium/hydroelectric_power_potentials_in_greenland>.

17. "Greenland Considers Selling Its Glaciers for Fancy Water." IceNews. 14 July 2009. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.icenews.is/index.php/2009/07/14/greenland-considers-selling-its-glaciers-for-fancy-water/>.

18. Wray, Richard. "Cairn Confirms Greenland Oil Find." The Guardian. 24 Aug. 2010. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2010/aug/24/cairn-confirms-greenland-oil-find>.

19. "Danish Doubts Over Greenland Vote." BBC News. 27 Nov. 2008. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7752660.stm>.

20. Ritter, Karl. "In Greenland, Warming Fuels Dream of Hidden Wealth." USATODAY. 27 Nov. 2009. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.usatoday.com/tech/science/environment/2009-11-27-greenland-warming-mineral_N.htm>.

21. Choyt, Marc. "Andrew Lee Smith, CEO of True North Gems: An Exclusive Fairjewelry.org Interview." Fair Trade Jewelry. 25 Sept. 2008. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.fairjewelry.org/archives/364>.

22. "As Arctic Warms, Increased Shipping Likely to Accelerate Climate Change." ScienceDaily. 26 Oct. 2010. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/10/101025161150.htm>.

23. Boswell, Randy. "Denmark Could Put Canada`s Arctic Ambition on Ice." G´┐Żldu - Resource Centre for the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. 27 May 2008. Web. 09 Dec. 2010. <http://www.galdu.org/web/index.php?odas=2828&giella1=eng>.

Images:
1. http://maps.grida.no/go/graphic/arctic-map-political

2. http://hungerreport.org/2010/report/chapters/four/making-the-connections

3. http://maps.grida.no/library/files/freshwater-resources-volume-by-continent_thumbnail_005.jpg

4. http://maps.grida.no/go/graphic/towns-and-industrial-activities-in-the-arctic

5. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20976034/

6. http://www.arcticprogress.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/greenland-oil.gif

7. http://www.fairjewelry.org/images/greenland_geologic_map.jpg

8. http://www.nato-pa.int/images/userImages/doc/3366/Map%20of%20Shipping%20routes.JPG

Back to Top.

[© Kelley Hamrick, 10 December 2010].