Portal:Arctic

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The Arctic is the region around the Earth's North Pole, opposite the Antarctic region around the South Pole. The Arctic includes the Arctic Ocean (which overlies the North Pole) and parts of Canada, Greenland (a territory of Denmark), Russia, the United States (Alaska), Iceland, Norway, Sweden and Finland. The word Arctic comes from the Greek word arktos (άρκτος) , which means bear. The name refers to the constellation Ursa Major, the "Great Bear", which dominates the northern region of the celestial sphere.

There are numerous definitions of the Arctic region. The boundary is generally considered to be north of the Arctic Circle (66° 33’N), which is the approximate limit of the midnight sun and the polar night. Other definitions are based on climate and ecology, such as the 10°C (50°F) July isotherm, which roughly corresponds to the tree line in most of the Arctic. Socially and politically, the Arctic region includes the northern territories of the eight Arctic states, including Lapland, although by natural science definitions much of this territory is considered subarctic.

The Arctic region consists of a vast ice-covered ocean (which is sometimes considered to be a northern arm of the Atlantic Ocean) surrounded by treeless, frozen ground. In recent years the extent of the ice pack has declined, with a record summer low set in 2012, and the lowest winter maximum set in 2016.

Life in the Arctic includes organisms living in the ice, zooplankton and phytoplankton, fish and marine mammals, birds, land animals such as polar bears, plants, and human societies.

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Tundra in Greenland
In physical geography, tundra is an area where the tree growth is hindered by low temperatures and short growing seasons. The term "tundra" comes from Kildin Sami tūndâr 'uplands, tundra, treeless mountain tract'. There are two types of tundra: Arctic tundra (which also occurs in Antarctica), and alpine tundra[1]. In tundra, the vegetation is composed of dwarf shrubs, sedges and grasses, mosses, and lichens. Scattered trees grow in some tundra. The ecotone (or ecological boundary region) between the tundra and the forest is known as the tree line or timberline.

Arctic tundra occurs in the far Northern Hemisphere, north of the taiga belt.The word "tundra" usually refers only to the areas where the subsoil is permafrost, or permanently frozen soil. (It may also refer to the treeless plain in general, so that northern Sápmi would be included.) Permafrost tundra includes vast areas of northern Russia and Canada [1]. The polar tundra is home to several peoples who are mostly nomadic reindeer herders, such as the Nganasan and Nenets in the permafrost area (and the Sami in Sápmi).

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Bob Marshall (wilderness activist)
Robert Marshall (January 2, 1901 – November 11, 1939) was an American forester and writer, as well as a wilderness activist and explorer. The son of wealthy constitutional lawyer and wilderness advocate Louis Marshall, Bob Marshall was first exposed to nature as a young child. He quickly developed a love for the outdoors, visiting the Adirondack Mountains numerous times to hike and climb, becoming one of the first Adirondack Forty-Sixers. He also traveled to the Alaskan wilderness and authored numerous articles and publications, including the 1933 bestselling book Arctic Village.

A scientist with a Doctor of Philosophy in plant physiology, Marshall became independently wealthy after the death of his father. He was also a supporter of socialism and civil liberties[2] and held two significant public posts during his life: chief of forestry in the Bureau of Indian Affairs, from 1933 to 1937, and head of recreation management in the Forest Service, from 1937 to 1939. Defining wilderness as a social as well as an environmental ideal, Marshall was the first to suggest a formal, national organization of individuals dedicated to the preservation of primeval land.[3]

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Eclipse seen from space

Description: Arctic eclipse seen from space

Author: NASA


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  • As I stood there on the top of the world and I thought of the hundreds of men who had lost their lives in the effort to reach it [North Pole], I felt profoundly grateful that I had the honor of representing my race.

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Hardangerfjord
Panoramic view of the Hardangerfjord in the county of Hordaland, Norway.

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References

  1. ^ a b "The Tundra Biome". The World's Biomes. Retrieved 2006-03-05.
  2. ^ Sutter, p. 194
  3. ^ Sutter, p. 233