Maine Governor: Global Warming Could Benefit Our State

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Thursday, 05 Dec 2013 01:14 PM

By Bill Hoffmann

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Maine Gov. Paul LePage says global climate change may be a positive for his state with the opening up of the Northwest Passage, The Bangor Daily News reports.

"Everybody looks at the negative effects of global warming, but with the ice melting, the Northern Passage has opened up," LePage told a transportation conference in Augusta on Thursday.

"So maybe, instead of being at the end of the pipeline, we’re now at the beginning of a new pipeline."

The Northwest Passage is a maritime route through the Arctic Circle which has widened in recent years because of the polar ice melt.

The route connects the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and provides a shortcut from the U.S. East Coast to Asia. It reduces by 40 percent the standard route through the Mediterranean Sea and Suez Canal.

The Northwest Passage was first navigated by explorer Roald Amundsen from 1903 to 1906.

Thanks to the expanded passage, Maine has formed a relationship with Icelandic shipping company Eimskipp, which has moved its American headquarters to Portland, the Daily News says.

Global warming also has Russia looking at Siberia and the Arctic Circle for expanded trade routes.

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