Life on a Boat in the Arctic (Oh and Also Our Planet Is Melting)

Keith Gessen’s New Yorker cover story about a ship carrying iron ore from Murmansk, Russia to China via the Northern Sea Route is a must-must-must-must-read.

Here’s a fun bit of information about working on a ship: “Most of the men were on six-month contracts, with monthly pay ranging from eleven hundred dollars, for the mess boys, to around ten thousand dollars, for the captain and the chief engineer — pretty good money in the Philippines and Ukraine.”

And here’s a fun bit of information about what we’ve done to our planet: “The thickness of the ice … is also decreasing, from an average thickness of twelve feet in 1980 to half that two decades later. The primary cause of this decline is warmer air temperatures in the Arctic, an area that has been more affected by global warming than any other place on earth.”

The article is subscription-only online, so you have some options if you aren’t already subscribed: 1. Get a login from a friend (in these trying times, etc.). 2. Go buy a hard copy for $6.99 (THIS IS WHAT I DID) 3. Subscribe! It’s $60 a year. For a magazine you get every week that PAYS WRITERS TO GO ON BOATS TO THE END OF THE WORLD. They also have cartoons.