One Project would Connect the World

The Bering Strait crossing, is a hypothetical bridge and tunnel spanning the relatively narrow and shallow Bering Strait between the Chukotka Peninsula in Russia and the Seward Peninsula in the U.S. state of Alaska. The bridge/tunnel would provide a connection linking North America (and potentially South America, see: Darién Gap) and Asia. It would link the U.S. directly to Russia and China.

With China spending literally trillions of dollars connecting China to Europe, sure a better (more valuable) project would be to connect directly to North America! Trains, and automobiles could deliver goods directly – quickly, instead of using massive, slow moving ships. It’s a better project than OBOR.

Four nations, U.S., China, Russia and Canada could all pitch in and make it a reality. And it is NOT too farfetched.

With the two Diomede Islands between the peninsulas, the Bering Strait could be spanned by a bridge/tunnel. There would be one long bridge, almost 40 km (25 mi) long, connecting Alaska and the Diomede Islands, and a tunnel connecting the Diomede Islands to Russia. The earth bored from the tunnel could be used as landfill to connect the two islands.

The Bering Strait tunnel is estimated to cost between $10 billion to $12 billion, while the entire project is estimated to cost $65 billion. That’s pocket change for the four countries. And it would provide massive economic development for some of the most distant, under developed regions of all these countries.

It is estimated this crossing could carry about 3% of global freight and make about US$7 billion a year in revenues.

I imagine it would be something like the “Chunnel” (Tunnel link between France and UK) where both cars and freight trucks are moved via rail access on both sides. After two decades now, the sub-sea tunnel that linked Britain and France on May 6, 1994 has its doubters on the northern side of “La Manche” mostly quieted. Its been a splendid success.

In February 1986, British transport secretary Nicholas Ridley sought to reassure concerned lawmakers, saying: “Will rabies come? Will the Russians invade along the tunnel? Should Britain remain an island? I sympathize with these emotional arguments, but I do not believe that they are rational.” In October 2012, the year of the London Olympics, Eurotunnel celebrated its 300 millionth passenger. The Chunnel has been running at a profit for quite a while!

But, more importantly, such a project would umbilically connect the America’s to Asia; and create a new era of global cooperation and good will. Leading to greater connectivity and economic integration. This can only be good.

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