Currently maritime traffic is able to pass from between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans for a limited period during the northern hemisphere summer each year via the North West and North East Passages. In contrast to the North West Passage, the North East Passage is now being used to ply commercial trade during the limited, but steadily increasing, summer window.
This painting depicts the scenario of an ice free Artic Ocean providing a trading route between Northern Europe and Japan that would be half that of the current shortest route through the Suez Canal and a route between Port Glasgow and Vancouver that would be almost 40% shorter than the current shortest route through the Panama Canal. It also depicts how Scapa Flow could potentially act as the Norther European hub for such a scenario.
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