The Bering Strait Tunnel -- The Russians Are Coming!

Discussion in 'Politics & Current Events' started by Anthony, Apr 19, 2007.

  1. Anthony

    Anthony Member

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    A Russian company is proposing to build a train tunnel pipeline across the Bering Strait to Alaska.

    I am speechless, even more so by the fact that this was first propsoed in the early 20th Century.


  2. Claymore

    Claymore Member

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    Can you imagine the engineering challenges?
  3. Anthony

    Anthony Member

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    That is why I am speechless. I would be cool though.
  4. Chicago1871

    Chicago1871 New Member

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    Even the completion of this tunnel would not accomplish this feat. :)


  5. Anthony

    Anthony Member

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    Ouch. Preview is my friend.

    This could really change the way trade is conducted. For various reasons, land links are usually prefered to sea links. US-China trade would shift from seaborne to rail borne, and you might also see some European-US trade shift to rail.

    Of course, it is all pie in the sky right now, and I doubt this will have any effect on the Third Lock project.
  6. Smurfquake

    Smurfquake Moderator Staff Member

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    It is cool, and the engineering challenges are not insurmountable -- if we ("we" being the human race) can build the Channel Tunnel, build a bridge across the Oresund between Denmark and Sweden, and build tunnels to connect the main islands of Japan, we can build a tunnel under the Bering Strait -- but I'm not sure how useful it would be. Sending freight up from China, across a big chunk of Siberia, and then all the way across Alaska and and the Yukon Territory, does not sound very efficient compared to current shipping options. Maintaining all that rail in land which is frozen for a large part of the year won't be cheap. (I'm assuming that there is not already rail going to either end of the Bering Strait -- why would there be?)
  7. Boloni86

    Boloni86 Member+

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    They don't even have flights from Alaska to Vladivostok. There's not enough movement of people in that area. The movement of goods through that area is not practical. Most manufactured goods from Asia come from Southern China which would be very far by train to get to the lower 48.

    Timber is a natural product in that part of Russia that we might be interested in, but even that usually gets processed in Southern China first before it gets shipped here. Fish is another natural product up there, but I don't think the US needs to import fish when we have a large fishing industry already in Alaska

    Natural gas might be the only other reason left.
  8. Anthony

    Anthony Member

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    The nearest rail heads are in Fairbanks Alaska (about 600 miles away) and Yatusk. As for the usefulness, I know that the South Koreans have been pushing for a rail link through North Korea as they feel it would be more efficient to ship by rail.

    One thing also is that a major reason for the tunnel is that the Russians are building some sort of tidal hydoelectric complex in the Yatusk region and feel it want to tap into the North American markets.
  9. 96Squig

    96Squig Member

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    On a sort of related issue, I read an article not long ago over people planning to buil a tunnel beneath Gibraltar, connecting Spain with Morocco.
  10. Boloni86

    Boloni86 Member+

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    That's plausible. There's a lot of traffic there, and the distance is about the same as a large river.
  11. Anthony

    Anthony Member

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    It still is about 9 miles, with the additional complication of earthquakes. But the prelimiary studies should be compleated, and construction could begin, next year.
  12. HerthaBerwyn

    HerthaBerwyn Member+

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  13. Claymore

    Claymore Member

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    The Bering Train?
  14. Katie!

    Katie! New Member

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  15. Yankee_Blue

    Yankee_Blue New Member

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    No! What about the caribou???
  16. Anthony

    Anthony Member

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    [​IMG]

    What about them?
  17. striker

    striker Member

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    Isn't it generally cheaper to ship by sea than rail (for the same distance)?

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