From the bridge of the Arctic Sunrise, an old ice-breaking fishing trawler turned research vessel now plying the polar waters between Greenland and northern Norway, Laura Meller has an unparalleled view of our planet’s future. It is both gorgeous, and terrifying. The early autumn sunlight bathes the scattered icebergs in soft pink and orange hues that glimmer with the gentle swell.
“It is so soft and quiet out here that it’s difficult to remember that we are literally looking at a climate emergency unfolding before our eyes,” she says by satellite-enabled WhatsApp. Meller is a polar advisor for a Greenpeace expedition plying the edge of the polar ice cap to document the minimum extent of sea ice this year, a potent indicator for overall global climate health. The prognosis is grim.
On Sept.21, scientists at the United States-based National Snow and Ice Data Centre (NSIDC), announced that Arctic sea