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Treadwell Joins Arctic Leaders in Russia to Discuss Arctic Shipping Safety

September 23, 2011, Anchorage, AK – At a gathering of Arctic leaders and experts convened by Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin in Arkhangelsk, Russia this week, Lt. Governor Mead Treadwell outlined Alaska’s efforts toward safe, secure and reliable shipping in the Arctic.

“This year, major tanker shipments of fuel travelling both ways through the Bering Strait makes it more important than ever to get basic safety measures nailed down,” Treadwell told the conference Thursday.

Treadwell opened a panel on safety and security in the context of Arctic transport system development during the second annual international forum, “The Arctic: Territory of Dialogue,” hosted by the Russian Geographical Society.

In his remarks, Treadwell identified several areas in which Alaska is investing either time or money in Arctic safety: a search and rescue agreement, a pending oil spill response agreement, port development, digital mapping upgrades, vessel tracking systems, and enhanced communications.

In May, State of Alaska delegates Treadwell and U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski participated in the 7th Arctic Council Ministerial in which council members signed an agreement to cooperate on Arctic search and rescue efforts. The state is actively involved in the Arctic Council’s development of a new international agreement on Arctic marine oil pollution preparedness and response.

Additionally, Treadwell noted that the State of Alaska has committed millions of dollars to vessel tracking system upgrades, statewide digital mapping, and an Arctic deep-water port study.

Treadwell also told the audience that Alaska is working to accelerate the deployment and availability of affordable broadband technology throughout the state to advance Arctic safety through communications.

Prior to the conference, Treadwell met with Chukotka Governor Roman Kopin to discuss common Arctic interests with Alaska’s neighbor across the Bering Strait.

 

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