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Knowledge and Implementation of Climate Change Adaptation in the Infrastructure Sector in Nunavut, Canada

Giger, Timothy LU and Ramsauer, Kelly LU (2019) VBRM15 20191
Division of Risk Management and Societal Safety
Abstract
The Arctic is at the forefront of climate change and is considered to be the most at risk, warming at twice the rate of the global annual average. The environment and its inhabitants are and will be subjected to deep transformational shifts, with changes in temperature and climate having potentially worldwide repercussions. Global attention for the Arctic region has further risen by the increasing natural resource opportunities and changes in its accessibility, emergence of new transportation routes and geopolitical shifts. In the context of the Canadian Arctic, debates over appropriate policy action on climate change adaptation is a prominent topic for policy at all levels of government and across all sectors. While mitigation is... (More)
The Arctic is at the forefront of climate change and is considered to be the most at risk, warming at twice the rate of the global annual average. The environment and its inhabitants are and will be subjected to deep transformational shifts, with changes in temperature and climate having potentially worldwide repercussions. Global attention for the Arctic region has further risen by the increasing natural resource opportunities and changes in its accessibility, emergence of new transportation routes and geopolitical shifts. In the context of the Canadian Arctic, debates over appropriate policy action on climate change adaptation is a prominent topic for policy at all levels of government and across all sectors. While mitigation is certainly needed both in Canada and internationally, in the context of the territory of Nunavut, preparedness and adaptation are perhaps the most important and immediate need. Assessing climate change adaptation considerations in the infrastructure sector in particular is crucial as both society and individuals are dependent on it. Infrastructure in Nunavut is built to withstand harsh seasonal conditions and is reliant on shipments of resources and material for maintenance and construction. Most of this infrastructure is susceptible to climate variability and thus vulnerable to climate change. The purpose of this thesis project is to identify and understand in what ways existing knowledge plays a role in the infrastructure sector and how this is implemented and operationalized for infrastructure development and policy in the context of Nunavut. The research hopes to contribute to the knowledge of climate change adaptation in infrastructure in vulnerable environments and foster greater dialogue on the topic, as well as encourage proactive action for climate-sensitive infrastructure development in Nunavut. (Less)
Popular Abstract
The Arctic is experiencing dramatic climate change and has been identified to be undergoing the most pronounced projected warming. With potential global repercussions, there has been an urgent need to understand how climate change affects the Arctic region. The Arctic environment and its inhabitants are and will be subjected to deep transformational shifts, with changes in temperature and climate having potentially worldwide repercussions.
In the context of the Canadian Arctic, debates over appropriate policy action on climate change adaptation is a prominent topic for policy at all levels of government and across all sectors. In the context of the territory of Nunavut, preparedness and adaptation are perhaps the most important and... (More)
The Arctic is experiencing dramatic climate change and has been identified to be undergoing the most pronounced projected warming. With potential global repercussions, there has been an urgent need to understand how climate change affects the Arctic region. The Arctic environment and its inhabitants are and will be subjected to deep transformational shifts, with changes in temperature and climate having potentially worldwide repercussions.
In the context of the Canadian Arctic, debates over appropriate policy action on climate change adaptation is a prominent topic for policy at all levels of government and across all sectors. In the context of the territory of Nunavut, preparedness and adaptation are perhaps the most important and immediate need. Assessing climate change adaptation considerations in the infrastructure sector in particular is crucial as both society and individuals. Infrastructure in Nunavut is built to withstand harsh seasonal conditions but is still susceptible to climate variability. The purpose of this thesis project is to identify and understand in what ways existing knowledge plays a role in the infrastructure sector and how this is implemented and operationalized for infrastructure development and policy in the context of Nunavut.
Building and maintaining infrastructure that can withstand climate impacts and variability and, developing the capacity and policy prioritization of CCA for the infrastructure sector requires continued efforts from across different sectors and scales. General data scarcity coupled with research disparities between communities in the region remain a major obstacle and pose a risk towards blanket policies. ‘Connecting the dots’ between both the CCA research realm and the infrastructure research realm has been highlighted as a crucial point throughout this research. The research also found limited number of case studies in Nunavut where concrete action in line with planned and prepared adaptation took place. There seems to be a disconnect between the governance levels as many actions are often ad-hoc and lack the long-term commitments that mainstreaming, and integration of adaptation action and decision-making require. The results show that although adaptation has been taking place, a need for continued dialogue between federal, territorial and community-level stakeholders is key to develop a long-term resilient
A qualitative case study approach was chosen in order to understand the processes and in what way CCA knowledge and ongoing measures are implemented and integrated in critical infrastructure projects and policies in the context of Nunavut, utilizing (1) a scoping review and a review of grey literature and publications, in combination with (2) semi-structured interviews with experts and researchers in the field. An assessment of the current situation and potential impacts of CCA measures for infrastructure can contribute to synergies between adaptation strategies and other infrastructure policy arenas. The research hopes to contribute to the knowledge of CCA in infrastructure in vulnerable environments and foster greater dialogue on the topic, as well as encourage proactive action for climate-sensitive infrastructure development in Nunavut. (Less)
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author
Giger, Timothy LU and Ramsauer, Kelly LU
supervisor
organization
course
VBRM15 20191
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
Nunavut, Arctic, Climate Change Adaptation, Infrastructure, Knowledge, Implementation, Policy, Climate-Sensitive Infrastructure
language
English
id
8982912
date added to LUP
2019-06-13 11:41:54
date last changed
2019-06-13 11:41:54
@misc{8982912,
  abstract     = {The Arctic is at the forefront of climate change and is considered to be the most at risk, warming at twice the rate of the global annual average. The environment and its inhabitants are and will be subjected to deep transformational shifts, with changes in temperature and climate having potentially worldwide repercussions. Global attention for the Arctic region has further risen by the increasing natural resource opportunities and changes in its accessibility, emergence of new transportation routes and geopolitical shifts. In the context of the Canadian Arctic, debates over appropriate policy action on climate change adaptation is a prominent topic for policy at all levels of government and across all sectors. While mitigation is certainly needed both in Canada and internationally, in the context of the territory of Nunavut, preparedness and adaptation are perhaps the most important and immediate need. Assessing climate change adaptation considerations in the infrastructure sector in particular is crucial as both society and individuals are dependent on it. Infrastructure in Nunavut is built to withstand harsh seasonal conditions and is reliant on shipments of resources and material for maintenance and construction. Most of this infrastructure is susceptible to climate variability and thus vulnerable to climate change. The purpose of this thesis project is to identify and understand in what ways existing knowledge plays a role in the infrastructure sector and how this is implemented and operationalized for infrastructure development and policy in the context of Nunavut. The research hopes to contribute to the knowledge of climate change adaptation in infrastructure in vulnerable environments and foster greater dialogue on the topic, as well as encourage proactive action for climate-sensitive infrastructure development in Nunavut.},
  author       = {Giger, Timothy and Ramsauer, Kelly},
  keyword      = {Nunavut,Arctic,Climate Change Adaptation,Infrastructure,Knowledge,Implementation,Policy,Climate-Sensitive Infrastructure},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Knowledge and Implementation of Climate Change Adaptation in the Infrastructure Sector in Nunavut, Canada},
  year         = {2019},
}