Heavy Fuel Oil: A Priority Threat to Arctic Cetaceans

The Arctic is undergoing a period of profound ecological transformation due to climate change. Sea ice melt is creating an opening for new commercial opportunities in the region, including increased ship traffic. These activities pose a major threat to Arctic cetaceans such as the beluga whale, especially the possibility of a heavy fuel oil (HFO) spill.

The International Whaling Commission (IWC) represents the largest gathering of experts on cetaceans, or whales, dolphins and porpoises, and has a vital role to play in providing advice on how to mitigate impacts from shipping on beluga. In its briefing Heavy Fuel Oil: A Priority Threat to Arctic Cetaceans, EIA presents the threat of HFO and urges the IWC to collaborate with the International Maritime Organization and the Arctic Council to mitigate and reduce the risks of HFO to the Arctic.

Photo at the top of this page: Tom Crowley