The Arctic is feeling the effects of rapid climate change more quickly than anyplace else on the planet. That's bad news for the four million people who live in the region, and the seven billion of us who don't. Because what happens in the Arctic doesn't stay in the Arctic.
The Big Melt: Life in the changing Arctic explores the science of climate change in the north and the lives of the people who are living through those changes.
The series is a partnership between The World and the Threshold Podcast, whose second season Cold Comfort is all about the Arctic.
Our guide is Threshold host and creator Amy Martin.
A sculpture in Iceland marks the location of the Arctic Circle — at least the circle's location this year, because it turns out that the Arctic Circle doesn't stay in one place. It's a suggestion of how difficult it is to pin down anything in the Arctic.
Shishmaref, Alaska, home to a tightly knit Iñpuiat community of 600 people, is ground zero for climate change in the Arctic. What happens here could foreshadow the fates of other US coastal communities. Why won't Washington pay attention?
After centuries on the margins, the Indigenous Sámi of the Arctic regions of Scandinavia are starting to reassert their cultural identity. And they say the world can't solve the climate crisis without perspectives like theirs.
Sea ice plays a big role in keeping the earth cool, but it's disappearing fast. No one knows this better, or is more directly affected, than the Arctic's native communities, whose economy and culture are deeply interwoven with ice.
As the Arctic warms, it’s opening up a whole new economic frontier, with big opportunities for tourism, shipping and resource development, including oil and gas. But that also brings a whole new array of risks for the region and the world.