For hundreds of years, European explorers sought a direct sea route from Europe to Asia. Now as Arctic ice melts, just such a route is opening across northern Russia. 

In August a Russian-owned tanker carrying liquefied natural gas made the trip from Norway to South Korea – the first time a ship of this kind did so without an icebreaker. Though the route is still closed by ice much of the year, the ice is thawing rapidly – and Russian President Vladimir Putin hopes it will transport lots of Russian oil and gas and eventually become “the Suez of the north.”

On this edition of Global Journalist, a look at the future of the Arctic and how rising temperatures will bring not just changes in the environment but in trade as well. 


Joining the program: 

  • Karen Thomas, editor of the trade publication LNG World Shipping.
  • Ed Struzik, a fellow at Institute for Energy and Environmental Policy at Queen’s University in Canada.
  • Alexey Knizikov, extractive industries environmental policy officer at the World Wildlife Fund’s Russia affiliate.
  • Ryan Uljua, research associate, The Arctic Institute. 

Assistant producers: Maria Callejon, Denitsa Tsekova, AnnMarie Welser, Yanqi Xu

Supervising producer: Rachel Foster-Gimbel

Visual editor: Aleissa Bleyl

Animations: Jonah McKeown