Newspaper Article - Harvard Gazette

Global Problem, Local Solutions

  • Clea Simon
| Apr. 21, 2020

Arctic Initiative leans on expertise of residents on climate change initiatives

The late Massachusetts congressman Thomas P. "Tip" O'Neill once famously declared, "All politics is local."

Much the same could be said about climate activism.

Take the Arctic Initiative, a joint project of the Environment and Natural Resources Program and the Science, Technology, and Public Policy Program at the Kennedy School's Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, which leans on local expertise for a wide array of potential policy solutions.

Such efforts are vital, said Halla Hrund Logadóttir, a fellow in the Environment and Natural Resources Program and a co-founder of the initiative, because of the broad ramifications of climate change on the lives of Arctic peoples, and the world. As polar ice melts ever faster, raising sea levels and changing weather patterns worldwide, "What happens in the Arctic absolutely does not stay in the Arctic," she said.

But even as traditional modes of life are being altered, perhaps irrevocably, new avenues of commerce and exploration are opening up. Once-ice-bound sea-lanes are now navigable, and the Arctic's vast mineral resources are increasingly accessible, presenting new opportunities and dangers for the fragile ecosystem and the people who live there.

"Coming from a small community in Iceland, I knew how difficult it is to try to solve these big questions on your own," said Logadóttir….

For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation:

Simon, Clea."Global Problem, Local Solutions." Harvard Gazette, April 21, 2020.

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