WORLD REGIONAL GEOGRAPHY. By Brett Lucas

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1 WORLD REGIONAL GEOGRAPHY By Brett Lucas

2 PACIFIC REALM AND POLAR Defining the Realm & Regions

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7 Defining the Realm Sea Hemisphere: seas cover nearly an entire hemisphere: Fragmented, culturally complex realm Total land area: Roughly equal to Texas and New Mexico But 90% of land is Island of New Guinea Outside the realm: Indonesia, Philippines, Australia, and New Zealand

8 Colonization and Independence Most have been colonized or annexed. Changing politics: Some have stayed colonies. Some have become independent. Some are somewhere in between. Island nations are rather disadvantaged in a world of large area states.

9 The Pacific Realm and Its Marine Geography Marine geography is a field encompassing a variety of approaches to studying the oceans and seas. Vast Pacific Ocean: Where Pacific waters meet surrounding shores Incorporates several seas: Sea of Japan East China South China Seas Pacific coastal countries compete for jurisdiction over the waters that bound them.

10 The Pacific Realm and Its Marine Geography: The State at Sea Territorial sea: the ocean area where all the rights of a coastal state would prevail: Beyond that lay the high seas as the free and open seas unfettered by national interests. Continental shelves, as the offshore continuation of coastal plains, became a new littoral frontier to establish boundaries. Scramble for the Oceans Precipitated by the claims of jurisdiction over the continental shelf. Political claims were then issued for territorial seas without a significant continental shelf to base them.

11 The Pacific Realm and Its Marine Geography: UNCLOS Intervention Concept Caching: Fishing Industry on Pago Pago, American Samoa Harm de Blij United Nations Conference on the Law of the Seas Established a 12-mile territorial sea for all countries and a 200-mile Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) where coastal states had total economic rights Far-reaching impact on various-sized islands of the Pacific

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13 The Pacific Realm and Its Marine Geography: UNCLOS Intervention Maritime Boundaries Maritime boundary problems: Where territorial waters or EEZs overlapped, median lines were drawn equidistant from opposite shores. Still subject to dispute in fragmented maritime regions. EEZ Implications Expanding sphere of influence and violation of EEZ rights. Scramble for ownership resulted in disputes for specks of island territories. Process of boundary delimitation continues.

14 Regional Issue: Who Should Own the Oceans? WE WHO LIVE HERE SHOULD OWN THE WATERS Economies of small islands need exclusive rights over their seas. Vast oceans available to all, but island nations are often disadvantaged in comparison. Entire Pacific should be divided among the island nations. Non-Pacific nations overuse resources of the high seas. THE OCEAN SHOULD BE OPEN AND RESTRICTED Territorial seas and other jurisdictions cause more problems than they solve. Overlapping EEZs may lead to the charging of vessels for passage through. No more extensions of jurisdictions over the ocean should be made. Maritime world is complicated enough already.

15 Melanesia Complex ethnic and human mosaic Dominated by New Guinea Papua New Guinea Development limited to the coasts and largely subsistence economy Numerous nation-building obstacles Discovery of oil and other minerals

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17 Papua New Guinea

18 Melanesia Solomon Islands Cultural fragmentation and inter-island historic animosities worsened by WWII events New Caledonia Under French rule and with a significant European population Violence between French and Melanesian groups

19 Melanesia Fiji South Asians brought by the British to work on sugar plantations Tensions between South Asians and Melanesians in Fijian politics Suspended from the British Commonwealth for refusal to call democratic elections

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21 Micronesia Region of micro islands Some high islands are volcanic Tend to be well-watered with good volcanic soils Larger populations supported by diverse crops More low islands barely reaching above sea level Smaller populations supported by fishing and coconuts

22 Micronesia Kiribati Three main island groups of an average of 2 m (6.5 ft) in elevation Vulnerable to rising seas Marshall Islands Republic in free association with the United States Bikini Atoll: a nuclear testing site for United States

23 Micronesia Northern Mariana Islands Commonwealth in political union with the United States Billions in aid for foreign policy favorable to United States Palau Dependent on U.S. aid and military agreement Also, rewards for recognition of Taiwan s sovereign status

24 Micronesia Guam U.S. territory Military installations and tourism provides most of its income. Nauru Wealth is from phosphate exports to Austral realm, but crisis looms as main deposits have run out.

25 Polynesia A vast region of diverse poly, or many, islands Polynesian realm: Consistency and uniformity of Polynesian culture Adaptation to maritime environment Forced to accept the harsh realities of seadominated island life

26 Polynesia Hawaiian Islands Fiftieth U.S. state Superimposed cultural landscape Tonga and Tuvalu Formerly under British colonial rule Both now independent

27 Polynesia Politico-geographical fragmentation of Polynesian culture: Tourism and development overtakes some islands like Tahiti. Americanization of societies like in Samoa has created new society. Polynesia has lost much of its ancient cultural consistency.

28 Partitioning the Antarctic A physiographic realm and frontier Attraction of pioneers and explorers: Partitioned into pieshaped sectors Attractive future resources Concept Caching: The Antarctic Peninsula Harm de Blij

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30 Partitioning the Antarctic Antarctic Treaty Ensures continued scientific collaboration, prohibits military activities, protects the environment, and holds national claims in abeyance No maritime claims for now: Complicated by the ice shelves attached to the coast Concept Caching: Mount Erebus, Ross Island Antarctica Loren Babcock

31 Geopolitics in the Arctic Basin Arctic Ocean is ringed by overlapping EEZs: Proof of continental shelves can extend rights further. Pie-shaped partition not appropriate, yet stakes for claims are high: Estimates of Arctic oil and gas reserves as high as 25% of remaining world total.

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33 Geopolitics in the Arctic Basin Disputation and Navigation Global warming: Greenland Ice Sheet is experiencing significant losses. Consequences: Ecological habitats Northern waterways open Competition for claims and ownership of waterways vacated by ice

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