The Arctic has warmed by over 3ºC, since the industrial age began. That’s twice as fast as the rest of the planet. Changes we see here are rippling across the world: sea levels are rising, and the climate systems we rely on are becoming more unstable and destructive.
There is already more oil in the world than can be safely burnt. There is simply no sane argument for the huge risk of Arctic drilling. If governments won't act, it's up to people around the world to stand up to greedy oil companies and demand Arctic protection.
When the Canadian Government gave permits letting oil companies use seismic blasting in Arctic water to hunt for oil, without properly consulting the community most affected by it, the people of Clyde River did not stand for it. They live closely with the wildlife around them, and rely on it as their food source. People around the world stood with them as they took their fight to the Supreme Court of Canada, and celebrated their victory over the oil industry.
The Khanty and Nenets people have lived along on Lake Numto in Siberia for thousands of years. Last year Surgutneftegas, a Russian oil company, set out to drill a set of wells here, despite powerful local resistance. 'This is our home, our world, our land, and we will not be given another.'
When you think of Arctic wildlife, you probably think of a polar bear. You won’t find a larger predator anywhere else on land on Earth. As sea ice melts and drifts further apart, polar bears are being forced to swim further and further to hunt. No bear can swim forever.
To survive the extreme cold, Arctic foxes build dens for themselves that burst with with wildflowers in the white desert of the tundra. Experts at conserving energy, they are so light on their feet that they almost glide over the snow.
Narwhals are the unicorns of the sea. They prefer swimming in sea ice, to open water. Their incredible sense of hearing helps them navigate. But it also means that when the oil industry look for new oil deposits by firing super-loud seismic blasts into the water, they risk killing any narwhals in the vicinity.
Walruses are known for their whiskers, tusks and sheer size. They are a keystone species in the Arctic ecosystem, which is why it is so worrying that we have seen thousands of them beaching themselves in recent years.
Puffins are highly skilled fishers found on the many islands in the Arctic and North Atlantic. They often live in large groups with other species, thriving in some of the most biodiverse waters in the world.
The Arctic is not a new hunting ground for oil companies - it's a wake up call. Now that there are millions of us moving the world towards clean and healthy solutions, we are stronger than ever in protecting the Arctic from destruction and showing that a better future is possible.