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The Northern Climate Observer

The Northern Climate Observer

The Northern Climate Observer is a compilation of articles and observations about changing environment and climate, and the impacts on Northern communities. It is a LEO Network product, published weekly by the Center for Climate and Health at the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium.

Dear Readers,

In this edition please find two articles about Mongolia, changes brought about by climate change, and an unusual outbreak of small ruminant plague in saiga antelope. We would like to thank Enke Gendendorj for her article contributions, and also express our appreciation to Khulan Bazarvaani for all her translation assistance. We are very pleased that LEO Network is now available in ten languages, including Mongolian!


Harhorin, Övörhangay, Mongolia
Maptia / Maptia / April 20, 2018

For centuries, nomads have herded livestock on the Mongolian steppe. Today, Mongolians are proud of their nomadic heritage, but globalisation and climate change are transforming the steppes and nomadic traditions. How Mongolia adapts to these new forces sweeping the steppes will determine the country’s future.

Read article on Maptia



Port Heiden, Alaska, United States
Paula Dobbyn / Bristol Bay Times / May 4, 2018

Located on the Alaska Peninsula, 424 miles southwest of Anchorage, Port Heiden is a cluster of homes at the mouth of the Meshik River on the shores of Bristol Bay. It's a community on the frontline of climate change in Alaska, where temperatures are rising twice as fast as the global average.

Read article on Bristol Bay Times



Andrea Thompson / Scientific American / May 2, 2018

April should be prime walrus hunting season for the native villages that dot Alaska's remote western coast. In years past the winter sea ice where the animals rest would still be abundant, providing prime targets for subsistence hunters. But this year sea-ice coverage as of late April was more like what would be expected for mid-June, well into the melt season. These conditions are the continuation of a winter-long scarcity of sea ice in the Bering Sea-a decline so stark it has stunned researchers who have spent years watching Arctic sea ice dwindle due to climate change.

Read article on Scientific American



Utqiaġvik, Alaska, United States
Alaska Media, LLC., Steve Keller designer and application developer / Arctic Sounder / May 4, 2018

The ice conditions are similar to last year (with) lots of young ice and close leads," said Captain Frederick Brower. "We all went out and broke trail to the edge, but a high west wind came along and added about three-quarters to 1 mile of ice and (we) had to break trail through that and began whaling from the new edge ... . The conditions were not favorable but we made due with what we had and continued on with our whaling season."

Read article on Arctic Sounder



Ховд, Hovd, Mongolia
Erica Goode / The Washington Post / December 20, 2017

It was December when the first reports started coming in: All across the frozen Mongolian steppe, saiga were dying from a virus. The antelope species, with its tawny coat, ringed horns and incongruous oversize snout, has roamed the world's chilly northern grasslands since the Pleistocene.

Read article on The Washington Post



Larsen Bay, Alaska, United States
David Harmes and Erica Lujan / LEO Network / April 20, 2018

Dead bald eagle washes up on Larsen Bay beach

Read post on the LEO Network



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Northern Climate Observer

This e-newsletter is distributed weekly by the Center for Climate and Health at the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium. The NCO is an up-to-date source for articles and observations about environmental change in the circumpolar north.

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