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IBRU Arctic Maps Series

IBRU's 'Arctic Maps' series identifies areas covered by CLCS recommendations, state submissions, and hypothetical state submissions, as well as other maritime jurisdictional zones north of the Arctic Circle. Comments and questions concerning the maps should be sent to

Please consult the Arctic Map Briefing Notes for details on the history and legal status of the various zones portrayed on the maps.

Please note, the IBRU Arctic maps and briefing notes are copyright © of IBRU: The Centre for Borders Research at Durham University. Neither the maps nor the briefing notes may be reproduced in any format without the written consent of IBRU. See our Terms of Use for full details.


Maritime jurisdication and boundaries in the Arctic region

This is the original IBRU Arctic map, first released in 2008 and revised several times since. States’ submissions to the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf (CLCS) regarding their extended continental shelves are presented in the context of a range of other maritime zones. The map presents a comprehensive view of CLCS recommendations (for Iceland and Norway), submissions that are pending CLCS action (for Canada, Denmark, and Russia), and the hypothetical extent of a U.S. submission. Additionally, the map indicates internal waters, territorial seas, and exclusive economic zones for each of the Arctic coastal states, as well as special areas within exclusive economic zones and the one area in the Arctic Ocean where there is an unresolved maritime boundary (in the Beaufort Sea, between the USA and Canada). Accompanying briefing notes detail the history and legal status of the various zones portrayed on the map.

Continental shelf submissions in the Central Arctic Ocean - Colour version

This simplified version of our main ‘Maritime Jurisdiction and Boundaries’ map focuses solely on states’ extended continental shelves in the Central Arctic Ocean, where media attention on the geopolitics of Arctic governance has been concentrated.



Continental shelf submissions in the Central Arctic Ocean - Black and white version

This map is recommended for users who require grey-scale (black and white) format. Other than being in grey-scale, this map is identical to the colour version of the ‘Continental shelf submissions in the Central Arctic Ocean’ map.



Focus maps on the Central Arctic Ocean

Individual maps showing the claims of Canada, Denmark, Norway, Russia and the United States of America.




Russia’s evolving Central Arctic Ocean submission

Russia’s initial filing with the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf, made in 2001, was the first submission received by the CLCS and was returned to Russia for lack of supporting evidence. In 2015, Russia submitted a revised filing and in March 2021 submitted addenda to the 2015 revision. This map indicates the differences in area between the submissions.