One great advantage of the exactAIS® service is its truly global coverage, including the remote Arctic region that had previously proved difficult to monitor. The Arctic sea ice is melting at an alarming rate, allowing for near year round shipping along the Northwest Passage. The alternatives to this Northern sea route are transport arteries half a world away that pass through the Suez and Panama Canals adding significant days to any journey. It is important to also realize though the environmental impact daily shipping will have on this fragile ecological system. The ability to monitor shipping activity throughout the vast Arctic region can help ensure that proper routes are being taken so as not to disrupt the environment.