MOSCOW, November 28. /TASS/. Refusing oil and gas produced in the Arctic could lead to larger shocks to the global energy market than those currently seen in Europe, Russia’s Ambassador-at-Large, Chairman of the Committee of the Arctic Council Nikolay Korchunov said on Monday.
"Rejecting Arctic oil and gas in general is fraught with the danger of compromising the stability of the global energy market, and could result in far more catastrophic shocks than those currently being experienced in the European energy industry. It is evident that we must not take the path of arbitrary constraints on oil and gas production, but rather the one that ensures its long-term viability," he said.
Korchunov called attention to the fact that the European Union's Arctic strategy "under the guise of environmental protection" aims to pursue a ban on hydrocarbon extraction and purchase in the Arctic and surrounding regions.
"Clearly, attempts to solve global climate concerns by artificially restricting economic activity in any single region do not hold up under scrutiny," Korchunov added. "When it comes to bans, you must remember that the ramifications of such actions will harm end customers, including those in European countries. They will also have a severe impact on the Arctic's local population and indigenous people, for whom sustainable economic activity is a critical prerequisite for enhancing their well-being," he said.
At the same time, Head of Federal Agency for Subsoil Management Evgeny Petrov said that the Russian Arctic continental shelf contains more than 85 trillion cubic meters of natural gas and 17 bln metric tons of oil. "Russia’s Arctic continental shelf has more than 85 trillion cubic meters of natural gas and 17 bln metric tons of oil. This is a strategic reserve in the development of the mineral resource base of the Russian Federation," he said.