Climate change

Climate change affects temperatures at the poles to a much greater extent than in other places: the Arctic is warming at a rate of almost twice the global average. Summer sea ice has been predicted to disappear within a generation, which will have a knock-on effect on global temperatures because of the albedo effect (see definition). Furthermore, because of warming, Arctic fish populations are expected to decline significantly and global sea levels are expected to rise with the melting of glaciers, sea ice and permafrost (see definition). Another significant concern is that with increasing ice melt entering the ocean, the Gulf Stream, which provides warmer temperatures to north-western Europe, will slow down significantly or stop completely.