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New Paper! Multiple Stressors and Adaptation in the Arctic

Congratulations to Eric Lede et al. (2021) on the paper in Regional Environmental Change entitled: The role of multiple stressors in adaptation to climate change in the Canadian Arctic.

This paper argues that an assessment of human vulnerability to climate change requires knowledge of these stressors, including the interactions among them that influence people’s sensitivity to climate risks and adaptability. This paper examines the role of multiple stressors in adaptation to climate change through a case study of Paulatuk, Northwest Territories, Canada. It is based on collaborative research involving semi-structured interviews with 28 participants, participant observation, and analysis of secondary sources of information.

In the context of subsistence harvesting, climatic stressors have affected access to, and the availability of, some fish and wildlife and are making travel conditions more unpredictable and dangerous. These stressors are being experienced at the same time as societal stressors such as financial and social barriers to participating in subsistence, challenges with local schooling, lifestyle changes, housing shortage and overcrowding, and addiction. Many of the coping strategies used by people in Paulatuk to deal with stressors involve trade-offs, which has undermined resilience to other stressors. This research demonstrates the need to consider the role of pre-existing environmental and societal stressors and diversity within communities in climate change adaptation planning in the Arctic.

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