Tuesday December 16th 2014
According to Yahoo! News, ‘Denmark will lay claim to energy-rich but contested territory around the North Pole on Monday by submitting data to the UN which it says demonstrates the area is an extension of its continental shelf.’
The Danish government plans to tell the UN Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf that data (collected since 2002) supports its claim to ownership over an area of about 895,000 square kilometres beyond the current nautical borders of Greenland, an autonomous Danish territory.
Foreign Minister Martin Lidegaard said: “The submission of our claim to the continental shelf north of Greenland is a historic and important milestone for the Kingdom of Denmark.”
“The objective of this huge project is to define the outer limits of our continental shelf and thereby — ultimately — of the Kingdom of Denmark.”
Claims on a continental shelf beyond 200 nautical miles from a country’s borders must officially be reinforced by scientific and technical data. However, the region in question is fiercely disputed by other countries.
Norway already lays claim to an area overlapping the one outlined in the Danish submission to the UN, and there is “potential overlap with Canada, the Russian Federation and the US,”
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement that Norway already has already laid claim to an area overlapping the one outlined in the Danish submission to the UN, and there is “potential overlap with Canada, the Russian Federation and the US.”
“It will be up to the parties themselves to negotiate bilateral delimitation agreements.”
According to a study by the US Geological Survey from 2008, the Arctic could hold 13% of the oil and 30% of the natural gas still to be discovered in the planet.