The Arctic’s summer sea ice appears to have hit its lowest extent of the year, putting pressure on the region’s diverse wildlife. Ice covered only 1.6 million square miles on Sept. 10, and 2016 is now tied with 2007 for the second-lowest sea ice extent on record, according to the US National Snow and Ice Data Center.
The US government announced its draft plan to conserve polar bears, calling for timely and decisive reduction of greenhouse gas emission levels to curb climate change. Immediate action to reduce the long-term impact of climate change is essential.
WWF today called on the U.S. government to prohibit offshore oil and gas drilling activities in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas off of Alaska, and not to issue any new permits until companies demonstrate that they can drill safely in the region.
In recognition of the leadership role the US must play in the Arctic, especially to address climate change impacts, President Obama has announced an Executive Order that will help the US government coordinate work in the management of the Arctic and its precious resources.
Forty percent. That’s the stunning population loss for polar bears in the southern Beaufort Sea. The news comes from a new study linking the dramatic decline in this polar bear subpopulation in northeast Alaska and Canada to a loss of sea ice due to climate change.
WWF's Elisabeth Kruger focuses on mitigating conflict between polar bears and people, and ensuring species conservation is consistent in the three countries that are home to the Bering, Chukchi, and Beafort Sea polar bears: the US, Russia and Canada.
New research mapping a range of oil spill scenarios in the Canadian Beaufort Sea finds that a spill would likely reach the U.S. shorelines of Alaska and could affect the local communities and wildlife living there.
Shell Oil Company has been granted permission by the U.S. government to begin preparatory drilling in Alaska’s Chukchi Sea. Layla Hughes, WWF’s expert on oil and gas development, shares her concerns and what WWF is doing to address them.