Since 1979, the Arctic has lost more than two-thirds of its sea ice volume.
This is a huge environmental problem because that sea ice plays a key role in regulating the earth's overall temperature. According to Dr. Nathan Kurtz, a NASA research scientist, the Arctic is "one of the most significant symbols of a changing planet."
By reflecting sunlight, the white Arctic ice keeps the planet cool. As the effects of climate change have increased, however, the ice has melted at a faster rate every year. In its place, the dark Arctic Ocean absorbs sunlight, making the world warmer.
As the Arctic sea ice shrinks and thins, the oil reserves underneath it become more accessible and lucrative to gasoline corporations. The very companies who caused climate change, such as Shell, want more oil to make climate change worse. While the United States banned oil drilling in the Arctic for the next two years, the fight is far from over.
To show the beauty of the sea ice and climate change's everyday effects that threaten its existence, Greenpeace held a historic performance with pianist Ludovico Einaudi ... floating in the middle of the Arctic Ocean.
On a white platform resembling sea ice, Einaudi — a renowned and award-winning artist — played an original composition, "Elegy for the Arctic." Through his music, he added his voice to the 8 million urging for the Arctic's protection. "Because when it comes to protecting the Arctic," Greenpeace wrote on its website, "It's about all of us."
While playing, Einaudi witnessed an all too common occurrence. Sea ice broke off the Wahlenbergbreen glacier and fell into the dark water below. Surprised, he took a moment to watch the world change around him, but never stopped playing.