"Climigration" In Northern Alaska: Sign Of Things To Come?

A new paper outlines the problems involved in relocating communities that are losing their land to climate change, and warns that other coastal areas could find themselves in the same position.

What's the Latest Development?


A paper published this week in the online edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (US) details the challenges involved in what its authors call "climigration": the resettlement of communities that are losing their land due to the effects of climate change. The paper focuses on three coastal villages in northern Alaska, all of which have suffered tremendous losses to their infrastructures because of increased flooding and erosion associated with rising temperatures. Unfortunately, due to conflicting regulations and a lack of funds, very little progress has been made towards relocation. So far only one of the three towns has managed to build a few houses at a new site.

What's the Big Idea?

The authors believe that, without some kind of central authority, what's currently happening with these and other Alaskan coastal villages could happen with other coastal areas if climate change continues unabated. They use the events following Hurricane Sandy as an example of what "may force even wealthy, heavily populated areas to make hard choices about what to invest in protecting—and what to relocate." They also note that "about 10 percent of the world's population—along with trillions of dollars of infrastructure—is within a few meters of the ocean." 

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com

Read it at Ars Technica

Related Articles

To save us, half of Earth needs to be given to animals

We're more dependent on them than we realize.

(Photo Lily on Unsplash)
Surprising Science
  • Scientists says our survival depends on biodiversity.
  • A natural climate strategy we often forget.
  • Seeing our place among the Earth's living creatures.
Keep reading Show less

New infographics show how cigarette smokers are socially penalized

There's a high social cost that comes with lighting up.

(Porch)
Sex & Relationships
  • The home improvement company Porch recently polled 1,009 people on their feelings about smoking.
  • The company recently published the results as infographics.
  • In terms of dating, 80 percent of nonsmokers find the habit a turnoff
Keep reading Show less

The "catch" to being on the keto diet

While short-term results are positive, there is mounting evidence against staying in ketosis for too long.

Brendan Hoffman / Getty
Surprising Science
  • Recent studies showed volunteers lost equal or more weight on high-carb, calorie-restricted diets than low-carb, calorie restricted diets.
  • There might be positive benefits to short-term usage of a ketogenic diet.
  • One dietician warns that the ketogenic diet could put diabetics at risk for diabetic ketoacidosis.
Keep reading Show less