China is accelerating its pace in Arctic exploration by publishing its first guide to sailing through the Northern Sea Route.

Greenpeace’s vessel «Arctic Sunrise» has been released after nearly nine months of detention in Murmansk, following the organization’s demonstration against Arctic drilling in the Pechora Sea last fall.

Russia’s leading icebreaker yard, the Baltiysky Zavod, is more than two years behind schedule in the contruction of the country’s new generation diesel-engined icebreakers.

Governors’ elections will be abolished and the governance of Arctic territories is likely to be transferred to a new Ministry of the Arctic.

Former Norwegian Minister of Foreign Affairs Jonas Gahr Støre has been appointed manager of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on the Arctic. -

Moscow is getting ready to fuel China’s energy-hungry economy and is using Arctic assets in its bargain. Not only will Russian Arctic gas flow towards Beijing, China is also likely to get new footholds in offshore assets.

Poland has noticeably increased its activity in Arctic affairs in recent years. Next year the Arctic Council observer state will launch a program aimed at attracting more Polish companies to the north.

One of the leading authorities on the physics of northern seas is predicting an ice-free Arctic Ocean by the year 2020.

Russia eyes huge new territories in the Arctic after comprehensive mapping of the North Pole area.

This abandoned polar hydrometrological station at Cape Menshikova on Novaya Zemlya can be declared a culture heritage site as Arkhangelsk authorities urge Moscow to include Arctic objects in the state register.

Industrialists in Finland eye the opening of a major trade and transport route with a projected railway connection to the Norwegian Arctic coast. Former PM Paavo Lipponen has been hired to get the Norwegians onboard.

In Arkhangelsk Russia has opened its third of ten planned search and rescue centers along the Northern Sea Route.

The world’s one and only nuclear powered container ship, the 26-year old “Sevmorput”, will from late 2015 be ready for operations in the Russian Arctic, Rosatom says.

The oil company might have illegally conducted seismic mapping in Arctic conservation areas, environmentalists say.

Norwegian research vessel ”Johan Hjort” has crisscrossed Arctic waters for more than two decades. Take a closer look at one of Norway’s key instruments for mapping of Arctic ecosystems.