Forces of Change

The Arctic’s climate has been changing. Spring thaws are earlier. Fall freeze-ups are later. Sea ice is shrinking. Unfamiliar species of plants and animals are appearing. Intense storms are more frequent.

Explore the Arctic’s changing climate. Discover what these changes mean for the Arctic, its wildlife, its people—and the rest of the planet.

This web site incorporates images and information from the Arctic: A Friend Acting Strangely exhibition developed by the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, which was on display at the Museum through November 2006. The exhibition puts a human face on warming in the Arctic by exploring how changes have been observed and documented by scientists and polar residents alike.

Featured Topics

Arctic Meltdown

What creatures live in the Arctic and are they feeling the heat?

Sliding Away

How is erosion a threat to coastal communities?

Caribou: Arctic Lifeline

What’s the connection between climate, caribou, and Arctic cultures?