Explore issues in the Arctic

The Arctic matters to the rest of the planet - as the driver of many of the world's climate and ocean systems, as the homeland of Indigenous Peoples who have inhabited the region for thousands of years, and as the site of some of the world's largest remaining intact ecosystems.

At the same time, it is a place of rapid change. Ecosystems face increasing pressure from the combined effects of climate change, transboundary pollutants and increasing industrial development. Human societies across the Arctic are trying to respond to these changes in many ways.

The following pages provide further information and resources on selected environmental issues affecting the Arctic.



Biodiversity & Ecosystem Management
“Increasing temperatures are already showing many effects on Arctic biodiversity including the northward movement of more southern species, shrubbing and greening of the land, changing pla ...
Climate Change
The Arctic is particularly sensitive to global warming and is undergoing some of the most rapid changes on the planet.Amongst the rapid changes being observed, air temperatures in the Arctic hav ...
Transport & Industry
Decreasing sea ice and the thawing of permafrost is altering transport opportunities in the Arctic.At sea, climate change is allowing for longer shipping seasons and new navigation routes. On la ...
Chemicals and Pollutants
The Arctic is often seen as a remote and pristine area little affected by pollution. On the contrary, the Arctic is a major recipient for industrial chemicals coming from different polluting sou ...

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