The map is not the territory – the Arctic Circle and the cartography of conflict to come

Arctic Circle claims mapThings are heating up in the Arctic Circle – and not just because of climate change. The prospect of as-yet untapped natural resources lurking at the crown of the globe may cause a resurgence in territorial disputes, as various nations attempt to stake their claims to jurisdiction over the area.

In an effort to inform policy-makers, researchers in the UK have used specialist geographical software to create a map that lays out the potentially disputable regions in detail. Whether the map becomes a focal point for reasoned discussion or a template for military operations rooms remains to be seen. [image courtesy Durham University via linked BBC article] [hat-tip to Darren@Orbit]