mentally devastating extraction methods, such as
fracking for natural gas, mountaintop removal to
extract coal, offshore drilling for oil and tar sands for
synthetic crude. All of these methods are extreme-
ly disruptive and destructive to the environment.
The past few years alone are rife with examples of
massive spills and accidents causing environmen-
tal damage of absolutely epic proportions.
This is no overnight change, but first and foremost
we can all be more efficient with our energy con-
sumption in our homes, businesses and transpor-
tation. Solar energy will likely play the largest role
in this transition, but in the meantime we need to
look at all aspects of how we use energy and use
less while minimizing pollution.
3. Melting in the Arctic
DiCaprio visits Baffin Island, situated in the Cana-
dian Arctic, above the Arctic Circle. There, he inter-
views National Geographic explorer-in-residence
Enric Sala, Ph.D., and Jake Awa, a native Arctic
guide and hunter.
45 | HAPI Guide
Awa recalls that in earlier years, they always used
to have solid, frozen ice. Today, it has a slushy con-
sistency, with large puddles everywhere. Accord-
ing to Sala, if the melting trend continues, by 2040
we will be able to sail across the North Pole. There
will be no Arctic ice left.
Even if the temperature were
to stabilize at the levels we’ve
seen in the past decade,
Greenland will still vanish.
In the past five years alone,
one lower Greenland weather
station has seen about 30
feet of ice melt, amounting to
hundreds of cubic kilometers