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Diplomacy and Intrigue in the Arctic
November 8, 2018 @ 7:00 pmFree
David Balton, Senior Fellow, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars; Former Ambassador for Oceans and Fisheries, U.S. Department of State
The Arctic region is undergoing profound changes, driven primarily by a warming climate. The nations and peoples of the Arctic are struggling to adapt to these changes. Over the past decade–and despite all manner of friction in the relationship between the United States and Russia–a new international architecture for governing the Arctic is beginning to emerge. Ambassador David A. Balton, who has played a key role in building this architecture, will review the state of play and consider what may lie ahead in the coming years.
Ambassador Balton is a Senior Fellow with the Woodrow Wilson Center’s Polar Initiative. He previously served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Oceans and Fisheries in the Department of State’s Bureau of Oceans, Environment, and Science, attaining the rank of Ambassador in 2006. He was responsible for coordinating the development of U.S. foreign policy concerning oceans and fisheries, and overseeing U.S. participation in international organizations dealing with these issues. His portfolio included managing U.S. foreign policy issues relating to the Arctic and Antarctica.
Ambassador Balton functioned as the lead U.S. negotiator on a wide range of agreements in the field of oceans and fisheries and chaired numerous international meetings. During the U.S. Chairmanship of the Arctic Council (2015-2017), he served as Chair of the Senior Arctic Officials. His prior Arctic Council experience included co-chairing the Arctic Council Task Forces that produced the 2011 Agreement on Cooperation on Aeronautical and Maritime Search and Rescue in the Arctic and the 2013 Agreement on Cooperation on Marine Oil Pollution Preparedness and Response in the Arctic. He separately chaired negotiations that produced the Agreement to Prevent Unregulated High Seas Fisheries in the Central Arctic Ocean.