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On Higher Ground - In January 2018, residents in the Yukon-Kuskokwim community of Chefornak were already working to relocate homes, developing detailed plans on how to move back from a rapidly eroding riverbank. They needed the plan, the data and resources to relocate; something they had done successfully as recently as the 1950s. Today the need to move to higher ground continues, but on top of bank erosion another climate challenge is emerging. This week APRN reported how the Abraham family had to evacuate after a sink hole was discovered under their house. This points to a concern shared by many Arctic communities about processes underground, and increasing instances of subsidence and sinkholes as a result of thawing permafrost. With the land increasingly vulnerable to thawing, we look to the efforts of Chefornak and other frontline communities to provide guidance on how to find the higher ground, and how to get there. Mike Brubaker, Editor

Chefornak, Alaska, United States
Greg Kim / Alaska Public Media / January 25, 2021

In Chefornak, a family was forced to evacuate their home because a sinkhole caused by thawing permafrost formed underneath it. That family had to move into a building intended to be a quarantine facility.

Read article on Alaska Public Media



Inverness, Scotland, United Kingdom
BBC News / January 25, 2021

The pancakes form when foam floating on a river or the sea freeze. These frozen chunks are then shaped by being rubbed against one another in eddies of water.

Read article on BBC News



Fort Good Hope, Northwest Territories, Canada
Jenna Dulewich / CBC / January 19, 2021

From lack of animals on the landscape to safety concerns, to stories of changes in the snow and wind, several northerners discussed the ‘weird’ season and its impact on hunting this year.

Read article on CBC



Beaver Creek, Yukon, Canada
CBC / January 25, 2021

Two women in Beaver Creek, say they jumped on a lynx to pull it away from a dog it attacked. The lynx, its mouth latched onto the dog's face, would not let go.

Read article on CBC



Machynlleth, Wales, United Kingdom
Anwyn Parry / County Times / January 19, 2021

A village near Machynlleth was one of the wettest places in the UK this morning after more than three days worth of rain fell in seven hours.

Read article on County Times



Siglufjörður, Northeast, Iceland
Gréta Sigríður Einarsdóttir / Iceland Review / January 20, 2021

The Department of Civil Protection has raised the level of alert from Uncertain to Dangerous, due to a risk of avalanches. This morning it was found that an avalanche had fallen on the Skarðsdalur Ski area. Nine houses in Siglufjörður will be evacuated.

Read article on Iceland Review



Wells-next-the-Sea, England, United Kingdom
Stuart Anderson / Eastern Daily Press / January 19, 2021

Rare melanistic seals have been captured on camera in north Norfolk. Rangers have spotted 10 melanistic seal pups during the winter 2020-21 pupping season at Blakeney Point.

Read article on Eastern Daily Press



The Northern Climate Observer is published weekly by the Center for Climate and Health. We track news coverage from across the circumpolar north and provide readers with a curated roundup of climate change related events. Thank you for reading our newsletter and for paying attention to our changing world.

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The Northern Climate Observer is published weekly by the Center for Climate and Health. We track news coverage from across the circumpolar north and provide readers with a curated roundup of climate change related events.

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