"Diplomats continue to think of this as a zero sum world. When they see exploitable resources, all things being equal, they are going to approach them through a competitive nation state system."
Sir David King, the UK government's former chief scientific adviser, called the invasion of Iraq "the first of [this century's] resource wars", warning that "powerful nations will secure resources for their own people at the expense of others".
"Behind Russia's policy are two potential benefits accruing from global warming, the prospect for an [even seasonally] ice-free shipping route from Europe to Asia, and the estimated oil and gas wealth hidden beneath the Arctic sea floor," noted a 2009 cable articulating US beliefs.
"The cables confirm what we as scientists already know; [global warming means] the Arctic is not just this hinterland, as it is portrayed in the mainstream media."
"Climate change is making these resources easier to exploit, while burning these resources will only contribute to more climate change," she says.
"In Canada, we have seen a number of well-known actors, including BP and Chevron, exploring for oil and gas in the Beaufort Sea. In the US, Shell is consistently trying to get access to resources off the coast of Alaska; BP hopes to develop off the coast of Russia and Cairn energy have already been awarded licenses in Greenland and they are likely to start [drilling] this year.
"If [these companies] are allowed to move forward, I don't think it is unreasonable that we would see a scramble for these resources."
"While in the Arctic there is peace and stability, however, one cannot exclude that in the future there will be a redistribution of power, up to armed intervention."
"how, during his March 2009 visit to Moscow, he thanked [Russian Foreign Minister Sergei] Lavrov for making it so much easier for him to justify the Joint Strike Fighter purchase to the Norwegian public, given Russia's regular military flights up and down Norway's coast".
The programme to develop the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is expected to cost the US and its allies more than $380 billion, meaning it is likely the most expensive military project in history ~ and politicians seem to feel the need to justify such a massive outlay of resources to skeptical electorates.
"From Afghanistan to the Arctic, from the coast of Somalia to the shores of Nootka Sound [on Vancouver island] we will be able to see what the bad guys are up to," with new military satellites.
"The persistent high public profile which this government has accorded 'Northern Issues' and the Arctic is, however, unprecedented and reflects the PM's views that 'the North has never been more important to our country' ~ although one could perhaps paraphrase to state 'the North has never been more important to our Party'."
"If you stay out [of the convention]" then-Danish foreign minister Moller is quoted as saying in 2009 cables, "then the rest of us will have more to carve up in the Arctic".
"If I knew why the US hasn't signed, I'd be happy," Young says, speculating that lobbyists for the mining industry and some senators who display "knee jerk negativism to the UN in general" were driving the decision.
"threatening character" of NATO in the far north. Today, NATO's role in the Arctic is unclear.
"There is no reason for NATO to have a strong Arctic profile," says Timo Koivurova, a visiting professor specialising in northern issues at the University of New South Wales in Australia. "All the Arctic Ocean coastal states have behaved exactly as the Law of the Sea dictates."
"The very best case scenario [for peace in the arctic] is that we move beyond fossil fuels," says American University's Paul Wapner. "The best case scenario is that we have cooperative institutions - with representatives of indigenous people ~ who use peaceful and cooperative means to ensure fair access to these resources.
"The doomsday would be competitive resource wars. As climate change gets worse, people will be pushed to get more resources to run their air conditioners and so forth. My prediction is that we are still going to be addicted to oil [when the main icecaps melt] and these resources are going to be extracted by the most powerful lot ~ which would include Russia, the US and China."