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Tag archives for Arctic

Swimming Among Pilot Whales in the Far North

We are not yet in Greenland, nor are we near Canada. We’re right smack dab in the middle of Davis Straight. The water is nearly 9,000 feet deep and I’m suited up like an astronaut.

United States, Europe Announce Emissions Reductions Pledges

“Ambitious and achievable” is how the White House described its formal emissions reduction pledge—a cut of 26 to 28 percent from 2005 levels by 2025—to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in preparation for negotiation of a binding climate agreement in Paris in December. Opinion about the aptness of the two adjectives…

Supreme Court Reviews EPA’s Power Plant Mercury Rule; Decision Due in June

The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments this week in a challenge to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) consideration of cost impacts when developing the Mercury and Air Toxics Standard, (MATS) which are set to go into effect next month. At issue in the case is whether the Clean Air Act requires the EPA…

First Global Review of Arctic Marine Mammals Reveals Uncertain Future

Despite Arctic marine mammals being icons of climate change, little is known about their populations across the Arctic. In a first ever global review of Arctic marine mammals, published last week in Conservation Biology, an international team of scientists provides a circumpolar range assessment. They studied population status and trends for 11 species, including polar bears, ice seals, narwhals,…

Polar Bears Sparring

This post is the first in the Click! Click! Click! Series which profiles interesting photographic moments that Kike captures during his travels.  About the photo: Two male polar bears (Ursus maritimus) sparring. Location: Canadian Arctic If you like this photograph, you find it at the National Geographic Online Store.   Follow Kike Calvo on Blog,  Facebook, Twitter, Web, Tumblr, LinkedIn or Instagram.

Polar Bears Use Scent as a Trail of Bread Crumbs

By Emily Shenk National Geographic Imagine you’ve drawn a line across a jigsaw puzzle, and you’re following that line from beginning to end. Suddenly the puzzle breaks apart and the pieces move in different directions. How do you follow the line to your destination? In the case of polar bears, the destination is a potential…

It’s Time for a Sea Party!

Tired of the political gridlock in Washington and elections that don’t get us anything but unlimited corporate campaign spending and attack ads? Go take a dip in the ocean and get over yourself. We don’t have time for cynicism or despair. We’ve got a job to do if we’re going to save the crucible of…

The Peel River Watershed: The Endangered Wilderness of Canada’s Yukon

This article is brought to you by the International League of Conservation Photographers (iLCP). Read our other articles on the National Geographic Voices blog featuring the work of our iLCP Fellow Photographers all around the world. Text and photos by Peter Mather, Fellow at the International League of Conservation Photographers. From the front seat of our Cessna 172, the…

Climate Change Risks, Impacts Focus of Reports

The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its Fifth Assessment Synthesis Report warning that greenhouse gas levels are at the highest they have been in 800,000 years. “We have little time before the window of opportunity to stay within the 2C of warming closes,” said IPCC chairman Rajendra Pachauri. “To keep a…

Elusive Wolverine Caught on Camera

Nicknamed “the devil bear” for its fierce disposition, wolverines are tenacious predators. Photographing the animal was a mixture of luck and perseverance for photographer Peter Mather, who spent a month trying to capture an image of one in the Canadian Yukon.

Crashing Into Ice: The Impact of Climate Change, on My Head

Ruby, Françoise, and I are barefoot and wearing t-shirts as we conduct sea bird surveys from the prow of the M/V Cape Race. Between shifts we close our eyes, the sun warms our faces and it feels downright tropical. Opening our eyes again, we are reminded of where we are. Looming in the distance are massive, glassy ice bergs, which we will soon be swimming by.

Svalbard Reindeer: Thriving Again on the Tundra

Perhaps the most endearing animal observed on our summer 2014 sojourn in the Arctic was the Svalbard reindeer, a subspecies of reindeer endemic to the archipelago midway between continental Norway and the North Pole. Depleted by hunting over more than six decades, the Svalbard reindeer has been recovering strongly under Norway’s conservation measures, and there may now be as many as 10,000 of them on the islands.

Court Ruling Could Affect Nation’s Electric Grid

Editor’s Note: While Tim Profeta is on vacation, Jeremy Tarr, policy associate in the Climate and Energy Program at Duke’s Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions, will author The Climate Post. Tim will post again August 28. A unanimous ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit could change the way utilities and regulators consider electricity…

Arctic Svalbard: A Summer Paradise for Birds

Svalbard is one of the world’s great wild places to see birds. Millions of them trek to the archipelago in summer for the abundance of food, and to breed and raise their young in relative safety.

Through the Killing Field to See Walruses

To get relatively close to a trio of walruses on a beach at Kapp Lee on Edgeøya, the third largest island in Svalbard, we had to skirt a killing field littered with bones of the corpulent marine mammals. Preserved as a cultural relic, along with a couple of huts once used by trappers and researchers, the skeletons are a…