Climate Change and Arctic Drilling Threaten Polar Bears’ Extinction

Climate Change and Arctic Drilling Threaten Polar Bears’ Extinction

The Trump Administration finally released the results of a long-awaited study on the cumulative impacts of oil and gas development in the Arctic on the endangered polar bear population and, not surprisingly, it was bad news for the bears. 

Why This Matters: The head of an agency should review a major work product before it is released to the public.  But delaying the release of a scientific report for months because it does not square with the administration’s policy viewpoint is another matter altogether.

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Trump Administration Green Lights Oil and Gas Development in ANWR

Trump Administration Green Lights Oil and Gas Development in ANWR

The Trump Administration yesterday finalized one of its most controversial fossil fuel favoritism pledges — the Interior Department approved oil and gas development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) a pristine area in Alaska that has been considered sacred ground to both Indigenous people and environmentalists.  The Refuge is a a 1.56-million-acre area of […]

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Polar Bears Jeopardized by Drastic Habitat Loss; DOI Says ANWR Drilling Won’t Hurt Them

Polar Bears Jeopardized by Drastic Habitat Loss; DOI Says ANWR Drilling Won’t Hurt Them

All but a few populations of polar bears found in the high Arctic could be extinct by 2100 due to the drastic loss of sea ice across their range, according to a study in the Journal Nature Climate Change published Monday.  Without ice, polar bears must survive on land, long distances from their food supplies, causing them to go hungry.

Why This Matters:  This study puts data behind the starving polar bear photo.  The U.S. population is one of the most threatened in the world because of the loss of ice.

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Siberia’s Record-Breaking Heat Leads to Wild Fires and Alarm from Scientists

Siberia’s Record-Breaking Heat Leads to Wild Fires and Alarm from Scientists

At the end of June, we wrote that a record-breaking high temperature of 100° F was detected in the northeastern Siberian town of Verkhoyansk. This caused alarm as this was one more indicator of the rapid warming happening at the Arctic Circle. Unfortunately, this stretch of record heat has continued in Siberia where’s it’s accelerated […]

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What Winter? Climate Change Alters Weather and Ocean Circulation Patterns

What Winter? Climate Change Alters Weather and Ocean Circulation Patterns

We know this winter was a warm one in much of the U.S. — dozens of cities east of the Mississippi River experienced a “meteorological winter” that was among their top 10 warmest on record — because, according to climate scientists, the Arctic oscillation has been in an unusually strong and it kept the cold Arctic air trapped up north,

Why This Matters:  Some of the Earth’s major circulatory systems are being altered by climate change, and now we can prove it.  The changes to weather and to the distribution of species on land and in the ocean could be devastating.

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JP Morgan To Stop Funding Arctic Projects, Warns Its Investors About Climate “Catastrophe”

JP Morgan To Stop Funding Arctic Projects, Warns Its Investors About Climate “Catastrophe”

JP Morgan Chase, the largest funder of oil and gas projects in the Arctic, announced on Monday that it will no longer fund those projects and it will reduce its investment in coal-fired power projects, but it will continue to invest in oil and gas projects in the rest of the U.S.

Why This Matters:  The commitment by JP Morgan to stay out of the Arctic shows that pressure from the public is working — forcing the bank to reconsider its fossil fuel loans and investments in a part of the planet which is changing more rapidly than most areas.

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