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Pages and Posts Tagged ‘permafrost’

People on the move

MOSS LANDING, CALIFORNIA– Among the variety of challenges facing polar societies is the melting permafrost and its effect on people who have been surviving in the Arctic for millennia... {Read More »}

Permafrost gone soft

MOSS LANDING, CALIFORNIA-- “Not only has climate change begun, but we are seeing a significant impact,” said Wayne Pollard from McGill University in Montreal, Canada in his plenary talk on “The effects of climate change on polar landscapes"... {Read More »}

Massive Permafrost Exposure

COLVILLE RIVER, ALASKA– Days drift by on the river. The wind of the previous entry indeed subsided that evening, and we paddled from 11 PM to 5 AM, stopping for an hour to gape in awe at a massive exposure of permafrost (frozen ground) towering above the river... {Read More »}

Digging Soil Pits

TOOLIK FIELD STATION, ALASKA– The northern foothills of the Brooks Range, including Toolik Lake, received nearly 15 cm of rain over the past several months. In Fairbanks, the rivers are at levels not observed since 1967. The tundra is fully saturated... {Read More »}

Mysterious Ground Ice Feature

TOOLIK FIELD STATION, ALASKA– Earlier this summer, my friends and I encountered a curious ice feature north of Toolik Lake near the Kuparuk River. Since the ice feature occurs at a familiar site, we knew it was newly exposed ice. So, we set out to learn just what this feature is and how it formed... {Read More »}

Welcome to the Top of the World

BARROW, ALASKA-- It is late April and I have finally made it to Barrow, Alaska. A place as intriguing as it is far north of… {Read More »}

Greenhouse Gases

Carbon dioxide is a colorless, odorless gas that makes up .04 percent of the earth’s atmosphere. It’s released by the breakdown of organic materials, by animals when they respire, and by the burning of fossil fuels. Carbon dioxide isn't toxic—after all, we exhale it with every breath and use it to make our drinks fizzy. However, as a greenhouse gas, it’s a significant contributor to global warming. {Read More »}


For those who think ice is all the same: think again. At the poles, ice takes many forms—from shiny “grease ice” on the sea surface to mile-thick ice sheets that cover entire continents. {Read More »}

Tundra and Permafrost

If you want to dig a ditch in the Arctic, you’d better bring more than a shovel. Even at the height of summer, you may only be able to dig down a foot or two before you hit solid, frozen soil known as permafrost. {Read More »}

Climate Change

Climate change is a topic of worldwide concern, but it’s of particular concern at the poles. That’s because the impacts of global warming are felt first and most severely at higher latitudes. {Read More »}