The Arctic & Global Warming
The Arctic is more impacted by global warming than any other place in the world.
© Daniel Beltrá / Greenpeace
For the people and animals that live in the Arctic’s unique environment climate change is not a debate; it’s a daily reality. And with the world growing warmer, Arctic ice is melting even faster, threatening their safety and way of life.
Already in the past 30 years, we’ve seen areas of Arctic sea ice melt that are larger than Norway, Sweden and Denmark combined.
Why the Arctic Matters for Global Warming
Nowhere is climate change more obvious than in the Arctic. And the Arctic helps to regulate the world’s temperature, so as more Arctic ice melts the warmer our world becomes.
These are the facts:
- Melting ice speeds up climate change. Global warming is causing Arctic ice to melt – ice reflects sunlight, while water absorbs it. When the Arctic ice melts, the oceans around it absorb more sunlight and heat up, making the world warmer as a result.
- Sea levels are rising. Over the past century, the global average sea level has risen four to eight inches. Melting Arctic ice is expected to speed up sea level rise. Some experts even estimate that the oceans will rise as much as 23 feet by 2100, which would flood major coastal cities and submerge some small island countries, causing untold devastation.
- But wait, there’s oil in the Arctic. Even though there’s oil in the Arctic Ocean, our dependence on oil is what’s causing climate change in the first place, but that hasn’t stopped big corporations like Shell and Exxon Mobil from trying to exploit the Arctic. Burning more fossil fuels is the last thing we should be doing if we hope to prevent the worst effects of climate change.
The good news is that there’s still a chance to limit the damage.
By preventing drilling, we can protect the Arctic for the millions of people and animals that call it home and stop fossil fuel companies from making climate change worse. Our planet is too precious to be exploited for corporate profits.