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Greenland

Yearbook 2011

Greenland. At the beginning of the year came new warnings about the effects of climate warming in Greenland. The glaciers had melted record-breaking in the past year, according to a study published in Environmental Research Letters. The ice melt had lasted 50 days longer than the annual average for three decades. According to climate researchers, the ever-faster melting of Greenlandic glaciers could lead to a global increase in sea level by 90-160 centimeters until the next turn of the century.

2011 Greenland

In March, Greenland requested that Denmark investigate whether the US intelligence service CIA carried prisoners in Greenlandic, Faroese or Danish airspace. It is known that CIA planes landed in Greenland for refueling. At the end of the year, Denmark agreed to an investigation into the CIA's flights.

According to the United States Geological Institute, one fifth of the world's recoverable hydrocarbon reserves are in the Arctic, and the US was said to have shown growing interest in Greenland's possible oil and gas resources during the year. Seven major oil companies were allowed to search for deposits outside Greenland, but only Scottish Cairn Energy drilled and searched down to one and a half kilometers deep, which no one in the Arctic has done before.

In May, Greenpeace activists managed to occupy a Norwegian oil rig hired by Cairn Energy for drilling outside Greenland. After blocking the oil rig's work for four days, the activists were arrested by Greenland police. Cairn Energy sued Greenpeace and claimed damages of up to two million British pounds a day if the oil rig's work was further hindered. Greenpeace requested that the company present a disaster plan, as oil spills in the cold Arctic waters are considered near enough impossible to clean up. Cairn Energy's wells outside Greenland during two seasons were estimated to cost about SEK 4 billion.

At the Danish parliamentary elections in September, the two Greenlandic seats went to the left-wing party Inuit Ataqatigiit and Social Democratic Siumut respectively.

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