WWF UK Blog Rod Downie

Rod Downie's latest posts

Adelie penguins on iceberg.

The best laid plans of ice and men (and penguins)

The Antarctic Peninsula and the Scotia Arc, including the South Orkney Islands, are among the most rapidly warming parts of our planet. Air and ocean temperatures have increased, some ice shelves have retreated or collapsed, most glaciers have also retreated, and seasonal pack ice is generally much reduced. This has important consequences for the wildlife, […]

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Penguin surprises in Antarctica – “These guys just keep amazing us”

For the last 3 years, WWF’s Polar Programme has been supporting critical science undertaken by the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) in Antarctica. Dr Yan Ropert-Coudert leads a team of keen scientists who spend a year or more at Dumont D’Urville station in Antarctica studying Adélie penguins. The scientists attach miniature GPS devices […]

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Walruses sitting on floating ice

A walrus ‘haul-out’ – and why it matters

The dramatic decline in summer sea ice will have a profound effect on Arctic people and species. Nick Sundt (the communications director for climate change at WWF US) follows some tagged walruses from Alaska to Russia in his latest blog, and explores some of the implications of a warming Arctic for the Pacific walrus. Less […]

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Deception Island, near the Antarctic Peninsula

Chinstrap penguin decline in Antarctica – climate change reported to be most likely cause

Populations of chinstrap penguins are in decline around the Antarctic Peninsula – one of the fastest warming places on the planet. The US-based organisation Oceanites has been collecting and analysing penguin population data at many locations on the Antarctic Peninsula since 1994. One of those is Deception Island (62°57’S, 60°38’W) – one of the most […]

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Polar bear crossing between ice flows

Arctic sea ice breaks record low

On Sunday, the Arctic sea ice hit its lowest extent since consistent satellite records began three decades ago. And it is predicted to continue to shrink towards the end of September, according to NASA and the National Snow and Ice Data Center. At 1.58 million square miles, it was 27,000 square miles below the 2007 […]

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Antarctic ice core

The past in a (very large) icecube

Climate change is well established on the Antarctic peninsula, one of the most rapidly warming places on our planet. This is threatening ice sheets that have been stable for many thousands of years. The BBC today reported on the results, published by Nature, of an ice core retrieved by the British Antarctic Survey from James […]

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Icebergs melting on the beach

Breaking records… and breaking ice

It’s been a record-breaking, feel-good month in a lot of ways. Team GB’s record Olympic medal haul left us on a high. World records on the track, velodrome, and aquatic centre crashed one after the other. But there is one record that I’d hoped we wouldn’t break this summer. I’m talking about the 2007 record […]

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Russian Academy of Science’s Kartesh Biological Research Station

Privet! Hello from the Russian Arctic

This week I’m with our WWF-Russia colleagues in Murmansk, a major sea-port on the shores of Kola Bay in the Barents Sea. With more than 300,000 inhabitants, Murmansk is the largest city above the Arctic circle. WWF’s office was established here in 2004, and its dynamic team of seven is led by Oleg Sutkaitis. The […]

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