John Kerry Updates His Climate Change Creds at the Arctic Council

Polar bear image by Patrick Kelley / US Coast Guard via US Geological Survey at Flickr. John Kerry photo courtesy the US Congress at Wikimedia Commons.Polar bear image by Patrick Kelley / US Coast Guard</a> via <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/usgeologicalsurvey/">US Geological Survey</a> at <a href="http://flickr.com/link-to-source-image">Flickr</a>. John Kerry photo courtesy the <a href="http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:John_Kerry_promotional_photograph_columns.jpg">US Congress at Wikimedia Commons</a>.

Facts matter: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter. Support our nonprofit reporting. Subscribe to our print magazine.


Secretary of State John Kerry is headed to Kiruna, Sweden, tomorrow, 14 May, for a ministerial meeting of the Arctic Council, the only diplomatic forum focused exclusively on the Arctic region. Members represent the eight nations with territory north of the Arctic Circle (Canada, the US, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, and Sweden), plus representatives of Arctic indigenous peoples. The Council’s concerns include a broad swath of environmental issues stemming from a wildly changing global climate amplified in the Arctic.

The meeting comes 25 years after Kerry hosted climate change hearing with Al Gore in the Senate and nothing happened. This year’s Arctic Council is focused on mitigating a future oil spill as drilling in the far north ramps up. Ministers will be signing of an historic Arctic Marine Oil Pollution Preparedness and Response Agreement. The State Department describes this as an agreement that will “forge strong partnerships in advance of an oil spill so that Arctic countries can quickly and cooperatively respond before it endangers lives and threatens fragile ecosystems.”

Sounds great, except we can’t contain offshore spills, no matter the level of cooperation. Still, Kerry’s attendance will boost interest in an obscure Council and the problems—for most—of a faraway place. 

REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

payment methods

REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate