“Climate change follows from increases in the atmospheric concentration of greenhouse gases (GHGs) such as carbon dioxide and methane. The concentration of these gases in the atmosphere was about 280 parts per million (ppm) before the Industrial Revolution and rose to 315 ppm by 1958. The value is now 418 ppm. There is no prospect of this concentration declining in the next 1,000 years, and it may well increase substantially before it stabilizes. It will take several decades to establish a carbon-neutral economy. Effective adaptation is going to be important if we are to maintain functioning overland transportation infrastructure, especially in permafrost regions.”

Christopher Burn, Carleton University

In practical terms, the climate change we are experiencing is irreversible. Now, a collection of 61 reports concerning the changing permafrost environment have been submitted to Transport Canada and expertly summarized in an important compendium.

The Northern Transportation Adaptation Initiative (NTAI) is a federal program designed to increase the capacity to adapt to climate change. Since 2011, NTAI has supported a wide range of research projects associated with highways and airports in northern Canada.

The compendium provides a comprehensive overview of permafrost research projects supported by the NTAI program from 2011 to 2021. The reports have been summarized and organized to provide convenient access to permafrost knowledge gained over the last decade. This an extremely important collection of research for the scientific and engineering communities, governments, industries, policy makers, students, and general public.

Stockton, E.J., Burn, C.R., Humphries, J., Andersen, T.S., Schetselaar, A.B., and Jardine, P.A. (eds.) 2021. Compendium of Permafrost Reports: Northern Transportation Adaptation Initiative (NTAI) 2011-2021. Carleton University, Ottawa, ON. DOI: 10.52381/CPR.NTAI.2021.

You can download the report here.


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