Pierre-Louis Têtu, Jackie Dawson & Julia Olsen

Pleasure craft are one of the fastest growing sectors of maritime transportation across the global Arctic and increasingly also in the Antarctic. The increase in interest among pleasure craft operators in traveling to polar regions presents a number of local economic development opportunities. However, current governance systems do not yet fully address the numerous safety, security and environmental concerns associated with developing this sector, which compounds an already precarious situation considering the remoteness and harshness of the polar environment. This study aimed to identify practices regarding the management and governance of pleasure craft in Arctic regions, including inventorying national, regional and local regulations. Using data from secondary sources, statistical information, and Coast Guard reports, this study discusses the diversity of management policies that exist throughout the Arctic that support and manage pleasure craft tourism, and concludes that harmonization of governance frameworks and improved reporting mechanisms among Arctic states could be beneficial.

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