Northeast Passage Benefits

Posted on September 25, 2019

With the increase of global warming, it is possible to connect European and Asian seaports along the Russian Arctic Coast. This is called “Northeast Passage” or “Nothern searoute."  This route reduces distances by 30% on average and transit times by 40% on average. Consequently, it also reduces the fuel needs and costs. Ice breaking ships are usually needed to transit, but it is significantly less useful due to global warming. Now vessels with reinforced bows are enough. China and North European countries are very interested by this new option. However, even if it does reduce distances and transit times, there is an ecological concern, because the arctic needs to be protected. For this reason, the French shipping line, CMA-CGM, announced they refuse to transit this Northeast passage. In AUgust 2019, CEO Rodolphe Saddé stated “The arctic zone regulates the flows and climate." In coming months and years, this new option will certainly multiply the debates between commercial and ecological interests.

Contributors: Parinka Humbert, Yann Prince, Martine Pronost, Anne-Sophie Receveur, and Chen Sheldon. 


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