Sept. 17, 2012
French photographer Samuel Blanc has been leading tours to Svalbard, Norway's archipelago in the Arctic, since 2007. This year the reduced sea ice extent allowed his expedition aboard the 12-passenger Polaris to circumnavigate the northern islands in early July rather than mid-August. Climate change is having a direct impact on the unique ecosystem isolated on these islands more than 400 miles north of Europe.
In the following photos, Blanc gives us a tour of life on the archipelago's largest island, Spitsbergen. You can see more of his work at www.sblanc.com.