Arctic

© Greenpeace / Christian Åslund

The Arctic is a treasure of life and beauty, home to millions of people and amazing wildlife.

Approximately 30 different peoples with unique cultures and traditions call the Arctic and subarctic regions “home”. The Indigenous Peoples in the Arctic, many of them Inuit, inhabit the most northern regions of North America, Eurasia and Greenland. Modern times have brought great change to life in the Arctic, but many people still live in very close connection with the land and depend on their natural environment and the Arctic wildlife.

Walruses, narwhals, Arctic foxes, beluga whales and polar bears are among the most iconic animals to be found in the Arctic, and they provide examples of the beauty, uniqueness and diversity of Arctic wildlife. Life in the Arctic forms a complex and delicate ecosystem.

Canada’s Arctic sector covers 1,425,000 square kilometers and is home to many Inuit, First Nations, Dene, Métis and non-Indigenous communities. After Greenland, the Canadian Arctic Archipelago is the world’s largest high-Arctic land area.

What happens in the Arctic also affects the lives of people far away. Arctic ice and snow help regulate our climate by reflecting incoming sunlight back into space, acting like a refrigerator for the planet. Arctic permafrost stores massive amounts of carbon, and as it thaws this carbon gets released and threatens to push global warming completely out of control. Melting Arctic ice on land raises global sea levels and could drown coastal communities and small island nations. The Arctic also influences weather patterns for the northern hemisphere.

Rising temperatures caused by climate change are rapidly altering the face of the Arctic, bringing new risks and big challenges for the environment and wildlife, as well as for people in the Arctic and all around the world.

Greenpeace has mobilized over seven million people to take a stand and help ensure the protection desperately needed at the top of the world. To add your voice sign the petition at SavetheArctic.org

The latest updates

 

Warming up for the North Pole, keeping a promise we made

Blog entry by Iris Andrews | April 3, 2013 3 comments

Last June, as we launched our campaign to  save the Arctic , we made a promise. We promised that if a million joined our movement, we would take their names to the North Pole and plant them on the seabed 4km beneath the ice as...

Wanted: Polar explorers. No experience required.

Blog entry by James Turner | March 27, 2013

In just over two weeks I will be standing on the frozen Arctic ocean, preparing to ski to the North Pole. I'll be wearing four layers of fleece and a special hat that someone knitted for me. In my pockets I'll carry some almond...

Flying high in the icy Arctic wonderland

Blog entry by Kari Reller* | March 26, 2013

Once you find inspiration, a splash of color will fill you up with the energy to make a change. The four walls around you feel less binding because you now realize you have a window leading to an outside world full of indescribable...

Latest score: Arctic 2 - Oil industry 0!

Blog entry by Truls Gulowsen | March 8, 2013

Shell’s spectacular series of mishaps in Alaska has definitely not been going down unnoticed in the oil industry. The Norwegian state-owned oil company Statoil is slowing down plans to drill for oil in US Arctic waters after Shell’s...

What does the giant Arctic camel tell us about climate change?

Blog entry by Ben Ayliffe | March 7, 2013

In my line of work the chances to flex my paleontological muscles are few and far between, which is why the news from scientists that they’ve discovered the remains of a giant camel that lived in Canada’s high Arctic millions of...

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