Arctic Sea Ice Loss: An Imperative for Action

We are losing Arctic sea ice at an unprecedented rate. This loss is primarily driven by global warming, a result of greenhouse gas emissions from human activity. The reduction of highly reflective Arctic sea ice intensifies global warming as the ice-free ocean absorbs more solar energy. Without actions to curb the rise of greenhouse gases, sea ice loss will continue unabated, further amplifying global warming and its impacts, disrupting marine ecosystems, exacerbating coastal erosion, and challenging food security for Arctic peoples.

The Sea Ice Action Network presents information about Arctic sea ice, why it's disappearing, and the impacts of sea ice loss on the Arctic and the world. While we do not advocate for specific actions to stem global warming, we underscore that our common future will be shaped by decisions made today.

The following are external sources of information for the various actions that are, or can be, taken to collectively or individually reduce greenhouse gas emissions and respond to climate change:

  • The Union of Concerned Scientists offer a range of technology and practical solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, ranging from the expanded use of renewable energy, reductions in tropical deforestation, and building support for national climate policies.

  • The National Academies' America's Climate Choices report (2010) relates the environmental, economic, and humanitarian risks posed by climate change to the urgent need for substantial action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to prepare for climate change adaptation. This report summarizes the role of local, state, and private-sector actions, while underscoring the importance of strong federal policies to set national goals and incentives, which may also promote strong U.S. engagement in international-level response efforts.

  • The Yale Program on Climate Change Communication has published a Citizen's Guide to Taking Action on Climate Change (2010). This report argues for the importance of local action to reduce carbon emissions, and offers solutions regarding personal transportation, home energy efficiency, low carbon diets, and ways to encourage sustainable communities.

  • The Nature Conservancy outlines strategic steps that citizens can take to combat climate change, such as calculating and offsetting personal carbon footprints and signing a Climate Pledge to encourage world leaders to keep promises made as part of 2015 Paris Climate Convention.