Over 5 million people around the world are now questioning Norway’s reputation as a leader in sustainability. More than 1000 people acted to #SaveTheIceEdge on May 13, by tweeting messages at the Norwegian government to stop the expansion of oil and gas in the Arctic Ocean.
For World Biodiversity Day 2020, we want to thank you for all the love you show for the Arctic.
Thank you from Karoline Andaur, CEO WWF-Norway
And you are not alone. Actor Jared Leto, Animal Planet host Forrest Galante, former European Parliament member Eva Joly, endurance swimmer and ocean advocate Lewis Pugh and Norwegian diplomat Erik Solheim are just some of the well-known supporters who joined the campaign.
Here are some of our favourite tweets:
Norway's upcoming decision
The ice edge stretches across the Arctic and is where sea ice meets the open ocean. This area is crucial for the survival of Arctic life. Oil lobbyists are pressuring the Norwegian government to ignore scientific recommendations and allow oil and gas exploration in this biodiversity hotspot.
On Thursday, May 14, WWF-Norway’s CEO, Karoline Andaur, gave a presentation to the Environment and Energy parliamentary committee, urging the Norwegian Parliament to listen to science and declare the ice edge a no-go-zone for offshore activity.
Expanding petroleum activities conflicts with Norway`s commitment to the Paris Agreement and a net-zero future. 85 per cent of the world's proven resources must remain in the ground for humanity to meet its commitments under the Paris Agreement.
Norway presents itself as a global leader in ocean sustainability. This reputation is on the line. WWF calls on Norway to take heed of science in securing a larger marginal ice zone and refraining from any new oil and gas exploration along the ice edge.
The marginal ice zone is teeming with biodiversity and is critical for the survival of many threatened Arctic species. The unique nature in this area is also essential for the rest of the globe as it supports enormous fisheries.
Not long ago, bowhead whales in the Barents Sea, between the Norwegian and Russian Arctic, were thought to be extinct because of whaling activities. But scientists discovered that a small number of bowheads still live in a biologically rich area known as the marginal ice zone. Despite prices for crude oil dipping into historic lows, this group of critically endangered whales faces a new threat as the Norwegian parliament decides in the coming weeks whether to expand oil drilling into the globally significant marginal ice zone.