Coast Guard: Efforts to Identify Arctic Requirements Are Ongoing, but More Communication about Agency Planning Efforts Would Be Beneficial, Report to Congressional Requesters   [open pdf - 1MB]

"The retreat of Arctic sea ice combined with expected increasing human activity in the area in shipping traffic and oil and gas exploration has increased the strategic interest that the United States and other nations have in the Arctic. As a result, the Coast Guard is expected to acquire increased responsibilities in the region. GAO [Government Accountability Office] was asked to examine the extent to which the Coast Guard is: (1) coordinating with stakeholders on Arctic issues and operations and what, if any, further opportunities exist to enhance coordination; (2) taking action to identify requirements for future Arctic operations; and (3) taking steps to identify and mitigate challenges to meet current and future Arctic requirements. GAO reviewed Coast Guard documents that described efforts to plan for increased Arctic activity. GAO conducted a site visit to Alaska and interviewed federal officials, Alaska state officials, Alaska Native stakeholders, as well as private or nonprofit organizations representing Arctic interests. These observations are not generalizable, but provided insights on Coast Guard activities and actions. GAO recommends that the Coast Guard communicate with key stakeholders on the process and progress of its Arctic planning efforts. DHS concurred with our recommendation."

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Government Accountability Office: http://www.gao.gov/
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