Most people only get to experience the Arctic region through nature programmes on TV, so the problem of Arctic warming is not something we are particularly aware of.
WWF wanted to make sure that 'out of sight' did not mean 'out of mind' by highlighting the risks of Arctic warming and show the direct effect of climate change in the Arctic on the whole planet. A major report compiled by WWF, entitled Arctic Feedbacks: The Impact on Global Climate Change, reveals that rapid retreat of ice could lead to the sea level rising by one metre in this century alone, threatening a quarter of the world's population. Warming in the Arctic could also substantially increase carbon dioxide and methane emissions in the atmosphere as a great quantity of those gases are stored in the Arctic's frozen soils or wetlands. WWF wanted to ensure that climate change was seen as a political priority for the months leading up to the United Nations Climate change conference in December.
To coincide with the release of the report, WWF teamed up with Brazilian artist Nele Azevedo to create 1,000 tiny ice sculptures of people. These were positioned on the steps of the music hall in Gendarmenmarkt public square in Berlin.
The sculptures began melting in 30 minutes, perfectly illustrating the impact of melting ice caps on humanity.