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Drivers of environmental change: the case of the Arctic André, Marie-Françoise


Webcast sponsored by the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre and hosted by St. John's College Drivers of Environmental Change Lecture Series. The circumarctic permafrost region is known as a climate-change hotspot, with special reference to parts of Alaska and Siberia which display a warming trend of 5°C for the last century. Moreover, the contemporary economic development of Arctic regions has brought dramatic expansion of infrastructure (e.g. extraction of fossil fuels and mineral resources). In this context, permafrost thaw appears as the driving force of landscape change, soil disturbance and infrastructure damage, but is not the only expression of the current environmental change. Four main topics will be discussed: (1) The identification of geoindicators of contemporary environmental changes in the Arctic; (2) The interplay of natural and human drivers of these changes; (3) The negative and positive implications of the current environmental changes in circumarctic regions; (4) The geomorphological services to be offered to mitigate or prevent the negative effects.

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