The Danish-Québécois War, also known as the Arctic War, the Great Northern War, and World War III (disputed), was an extensive military conflict fought primarily between Denmark and Quebec, although other nations provided financial, logistic, and medical support to the belligerents. The war is considered a part of the Global Mineral Wars, which concerned control over the increasingly depleted mineral reserves of the planet. The immediate cause of the Arctic War was the Greenland Referendum of 2069, which asked residents of the island whether they wished to be annexed by Quebec, a rising regional power and a nation geographically proximate to Greenland. After Greenland voted for North American annexation, the Danish authorities declared the referendum "invalid", and mobilized forces in the region. As part of a "liberation" campaign, Quebec invaded and occupied Greenland, leading to war. The Québécois president framed his efforts as a "Global War on Tyranny", vying to "dissolve the brutal Danish imperial rule in Greenland", although many politicians called this statement patently ridiculous and merely an excuse for securing the vast resources of Greenland, which held much economic potential. After three years of warfare, Quebec invaded and occupied Denmark, and forced them to cede Greenland, and offer war reparations.
One of the most pressing issues of the twenty-first century has been global resource depletion. Reserves of important industrial minerals and metals--including iron, copper, aluminum, and a variety of rare earth elements, as well as energy resources like oil, coal, and natural gas--were rapidly dwindling by the middle of the century, largely due to increased demand from emerging economic powers, like China and India. Minerals and energy reserves are crucial to establishing an industrial base, and the remaining sources of these resources brought immense economic and political power to those countries that could occupy them.
As climate change caused increasingly high temperatures in the Arctic, many northern nations greatly benefited. The newly clear Arctic sea could be utilized for a vast amount of shipping and maritime trade. The melting of great amounts of ice in Greenland, Canada, and Siberia uncovered a tremendous treasure trove of minerals, metals, and energy reserves. While not nearly enough to solve the global crisis of resource depletion, these Arctic deposits still brought great wealth to those countries that could successfully control them and sell their resources to the expanding emerging powers of Asia. Furthermore, advances in drilling technology and infrastructure allowed a great quantity of Arctic resources--especially in Greenland --to be utilized.
Greenland became central to this so-called "Arctic Mineral Rush" or "Scramble for the Arctic". By the early 2060s, the island was generating hundreds of billions of dollars in revenue. Furthermore, much of the territorial seas around Greenland held additional resources, which could increase its economic potential even further. Some of these resources included iron ore, copper, cobalt, bauxite, titanium, various rare earths, uranium, natural gas, and great amounts of coal. Having switched away from the increasingly impractical oil-based lifestyle, many nations depended upon coal, natural gas, and nuclear fuel, as well as the increasingly important metals and minerals.
Quebec was one of the nations that competed for control of these metals and minerals. A nation created relatively recently, having split off from Canada in the 2030s, Quebec grew to become a regional power largely due to its significant population (aided by liberal immigration laws), as well as its proximity to Arctic resources and shipping routes. In 2069, Greenland, which had been a territory of Denmark for centuries, held a referendum concerning annexation by increasingly powerful Quebec. After the locals voted to become part of Quebec, Denmark called the referendum "invalid" and mobilized troops in the island. The Québécois invasion of 2069 started the war.