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DW: Melting ice – the future of the Arctic

19/10/2019

 

Climate change in the Arctic is fueling not only fear, but also hope. Sea levels will rise and flood many regions. But the melting ice will also expose new land with reserves of oil, gas and minerals. New sea routes are also emerging.

The melting of the ice in the far north has given reason for great optimism, as newly-found mineral resources promise the Inuit a better life. But international corporations and self-proclaimed ‘partners’ such as China also have their eye on the treasures of the Arctic. Some even dream of a polar Silk Road. As large corporations position themselves to exploit the treasures of the far north, the indigenous people, the Inuit, are fighting for their independence.

Our film team spent four weeks with a geological expedition to the north coast of Canada – a place where no human has ever set foot before – and were present at the geologists world’s northernmost spring. A microbiologist with them also collected DNA samples that could help in the development of new vaccines against resistant germs. However, the most important resource in the far north is still fish: Greenland supplies half the world with it, yet it still doesn’t bring in enough to finance necessary investments in its underdeveloped infrastructure. And in Canada, the Inuit are also struggling with their government for the right to share in the wealth of their own land.

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