August 22, 2016
GREENLAND – Today, U.S. Senator Angus King (I-Maine) arrived in Greenland for a three day fact-finding mission focused on examining the environmental and security implications of the warming Arctic climate. Upon arriving, Senator King, along with Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Paul F. Zukunft and Danish defense and meteorological officials, surveyed the Jacobshavn Glacier.
Senator King released the following video statement from Greenland:
***For additional pictures from the trip, which will be uploaded as received, click HERE***
Jacobshavn is Greenland’s largest and fastest moving glacier. Last summer, it shed an estimated five square miles in a matter of two days, and, as of 2012, was pouring out ice at a speed of 150 feet per day – nearly three times its flow rate in the 1990s, according to research.
Tomorrow,, Senator King and the rest of the delegation will receive a briefing from Dr. Robert Correll, a global climate scientist, and John Englander, an oceanographer and expert on the risks of rising sea levels, about the increasing importance of the Arctic. Following the briefing, Senator King will survey marine vehicles used in the Arctic before boarding them to tour an iceberg and receive a briefing from the Director of the Danish Meteorological Institute.
The Arctic is of increasing strategic importance to the United States and its allies in the region. Bordering on several nations, including the United States, Russia, Canada, Norway, and Denmark, the Arctic serves as an important waterway between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, particularly as the accelerating melting of Arctic ice creates the potential to open up new global shipping routes, energy markets, and create competition among other commercial and national security interests.