When we think about threats to whales, seals and walrus in the Arctic we don’t immediately think of underwater noise pollution. More likely our minds go to visions of melting ice, caused by the region’s biggest threat: the climate crisis. Sea ice is essential habitat for many Arctic species, and it is also incredibly important in shaping the underwater soundscape that marine animals use to navigate, find food and mates, and avoid danger.
2020 has not been easy for anyone, including the Arctic, which faced heatwaves, wildfires and record low sea ice levels. But there have also been some global conservation wins for the Arctic this year that we can certainly take a moment to celebrate.