The True Cost of Oil Spills

The Arctic hosts one of the world’s most productive and most pristine marine environments.  An oil spill of heavy fuel oil, which could devastate this fragile world and destroy food sources for arctic communities, is the top threat associated with increased Arctic shipping.  Heavy fuel oil is extremely toxic and slow to degrade.  Oil spill … Read more

The Power of Partnerships

Nina Zaporotskaya created an unlikely alliance between park rangers and indigenous groups to protect wild salmon. Nina Zaporotskaya is a salmon defender. And she is one of the reasons we’re witnessing a sea change in our longstanding fight to protect one of Kamchatka’s most iconic creatures: wild salmon. The threat: illegal poaching. Kamchatka is a … Read more

Arctic Peoples and Mammals in Crisis

Eduard Zdor protects walruses threatened by climate change and connects indigenous youth with their cultural traditions. Scientists and indigenous peoples noticed a disturbing trend among walrus populations in Chukotka in Russia’s far northeastern corner. During the summer, melting sea ice, caused by climate change, forced walruses to gather onto ever smaller beaches on shore. Eduard … Read more

Courage Trumps Fear

Aleksei Gribkov defies government pressure and wins landmark legal victory for Russia’s environmental movement. Aleksei Gribkov did not back down when Russia’s state security agencies harassed him and his organization, the Gebler Ecological Society, to drop a lawsuit that ended up becoming a landmark victory for Russia’s environmental movement. Aleksei’s deep love for Altai’s wilderness, … Read more

Saving Russia’s Forest Starts with Protecting Its Big Cats

Sergei Berezniuk’s fight to protect the endangered Siberian tiger helps save an entire ecosystem. In the summer of 2012, eight Siberian tiger skins, including those of little tiger cubs, were seized from a resident of Arseniev town in Primorye in the Russian Far East. The offender was well-known to the local police because he has … Read more

Special Ops Soldier Turned National Park Ranger

Eugene “Zhenya” Stoma is fighting two of the biggest threats to endangered Siberian Tigers and Amur leopards: poachers and forest fires. Zhenya grew up in southern Siberia, which is home to vast old forests filled with endangered Siberian tigers, Amur leopards, and bears. After leaving the military in the 1990s, Zhenya returned home and took … Read more

Hopeful News for Arctic Protection As We Head Into 2017

As 2016 ends and we look ahead to the challenges of 2017, I want to pause for a minute and share with you some encouraging news for the future of the Arctic. Pacific Environment has been campaigning for a fossil fuel-free Arctic for nearly a decade, together with many environmental groups, community allies and supporters … Read more

Indigenous Leaders Need a Seat at the U.N. Table

“The anticipated increase in ship traffic in the Arctic is second in magnitude only to the initial arrival of European settlers on our shores.” When my friend Austin Ahmasuk, a leader from Nome, Alaska, said this, it really hit me just how dramatically the world is changing for Arctic indigenous peoples whose lives are inextricably … Read more

Protecting Russian Rivers from Illegal Mining

People have been searching for gold for thousands of years. It’s an enduring dream that anyone can strike it rich by sieving river mud in search of that big gold nugget that will change their life. Few ever imagine the terrible consequences of mining rivers for gold. In the Altai region in southern Siberia, gold … Read more

It’s Time to Ban Toxic Oil from the Arctic

Right now, Pacific Environment is gearing up to fight two big threats to the Arctic: a catastrophic oil spill and President-elect Trump’s ruthless fossil fuel agenda. Transported as cargo or used as cheap engine fuel by ships traveling through the fragile Arctic, heavy fuel oil is putting the Arctic’s marine mammals, birds, fish, and the … Read more

We Stand With Chukchis, Muslims, Appalachian Families – and All Who Fight for Clean Energy and Healthy Communities

Recently in London—10 days before the U.S. election—I had the privilege of hearing my friend Eduard Zdor speak. Eduard is a Chukchi leader from the Russian Arctic who founded an organization of traditional marine mammal hunters. Eduard spoke of his traditions, his parents and grandparents, the challenges his community faces now in a world of … Read more

URGENT: Take Action to Protect the Arctic Ocean from Dirty Shipping

Arctic Ocean ice just hit another all-time low. With more open water comes increased ship traffic. Some of the ships traveling through pristine Arctic waters are powered by the world’s dirtiest, most dangerous oil: heavy fuel oil. This dangerous oil is literally the residue left at the bottom of the barrel after lighter fuels have … Read more

Historic Vote on Arctic Refuge

Today, the House of Representatives took a historic vote to whether protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge’s Coastal Plain as Wilderness. Rep. Jared Huffman (D-CA) offered the House Arctic Refuge Wilderness bill as an amendment to the Sportsmen’s Heritage and Recreational Enhancement (SHARE) Act of 2015, H.R. 2406, a bill that contains a number of destructive provisions that threaten wildlife and public lands, erode bedrock environmental laws and undermine key conservation policies. The bipartisan vote on the amendment – the first time Congress has ever voted on a Wilderness bill for the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge – was 176 yeas and 227 nays (31 not voting).

The Arctic Offers a Glimpse Into Our Planet’s Future

This past summer an important thing happened in America’s Arctic. President Obama, who previously had only stopped in Alaska to refuel Air Force One, decided to spend some quality time with us to explore our magnificent landscapes. And he fell in love—not only with our jaw-dropping scenery, but also with our vibrant Alaska Native cultures. … Read more

Arctic Peoples and Wildlife Receive Unique, Historic Protection

Today, we celebrate a historic win for the Arctic, its wildlife, and its peoples. After years of negotiations, at 9 a.m. London time, the international community agreed to establish some special protections for this magnificent region. The new laws, known as the Polar Code, forbid ships traversing the Arctic to dump garbage, sewage, and oil … Read more

Our Top 7 Wins of 2014

It has been a banner year for us and our local partners on the frontlines of environmental justice around the Pacific Rim. Here are seven accomplishments I’m especially proud of; they would not have been possible without your support.   Preserving Untouched Wilderness The Russian Far East is a region of unparalleled wilderness, rich in … Read more

New Strategies for Conservation Success in Russia

Russia’s Far East and Arctic are regions of unparalleled wilderness, rich in biodiversity and vast intact ecosystems. The region is also home to dozens of indigenous cultures, endangered wildlife, and forests so vast they are only rivaled by the Amazon’s. Over the past two years, Pacific Environment has worked with dozens of community leaders, conservationists, … Read more

Walrus Haul-Outs on Beaches: Some Solutions

In late September, about 35,000 walrus crowded together on a beach in northwest Alaska. This was not an isolated incident, but its sheer size attracted a lot of media attention. It clearly showed that climate change is severely altering walrus behavior. These walrus haul-outs are happening on both sides of the Bering Strait. Pacific Environment’s … Read more