Climate change is killing reindeer

Over 80,000 animals have starved to death in Russian Arctic

Due to the Earth’s axial tilt and rotation, the polar regions are always a flashpoint when atmospheric conditions change; this is the reason that the hole in the ozone layer hovers over the South Pole rather than the equator.

Currently it is the habitats nearer to the North Pole getting battered, with stunning temperatures 36°F above normal being recorded now. That has led to serious consequences for the wildlife and Arctic communities that depend on the ecosystem, with over 80,000 reindeer starving to death in Russia over an eight year period, including 61,000 casualties in 2013 alone. Loss of sea ice cover has been accompanied by rain and thick ice sheets that cut off access to food sources that reindeer rely on, like lichen. The same phenomena also threatens caribou populations and migratory paths in Alaska and Canada, which would similarly disrupt the livelihoods and economies of communities in North America, as it currently is in Russia. While it mainly northern indigenous communities bearing the earliest brunt of climate change, they may just be an early preview of the major disasters that could occur in the decades to come.

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