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<< Back to: Member News: ICLEI e-News | issue 8, June - July 2007

Impacts of climate change on Juneau

September 04, 2007

A scientific analysis on the predicted climate change impacts on Juneau (U.S.A.) will assist the Mayor, Council and the community to make recommendations and develop policy options.

Completed by the University of Alaska, the analysis identified a surprising impact - while global sea level is projected to rise, in the City and Borough of Juneau the land surface is rising as a result of glacial ice (isostatic rebound) at a rate of uplift that is greater than the projected rate of global sea level rise.  Therefore, over the next century, the relative sea level in Juneau will likely decrease between .3 metres (1.0 feet) and 1.1 metres (3.6 feet).

Other impacts include:

  • retreat of the Juneau Icefield;
  • increase in average air temperatures by approximately -12 degrees Centigrade (10 degrees Fahrenheit);
  • growth of shrubs and trees in alpine or tundra habitat;
  • alter the ecology of salmon due to increasing temperature and precipitation;
  • increase the intensity and frequency of coastal storms; and
  • alter the commercial, subsistence and recreational harvesting to an extent that cannot currently be readily predicted.

More and more cities are facing the need to mitigate climate change while already adapting to the changes brought about by climate change.  ICLEI’s Cities for Climate Protection® (CCP) Campaign is an innovative international campaign that helps local government and their communities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and their impact on the environment.   And now, the CCP Campaign is launching the Adaptation Initiative, building capacity for climate change impacts at the local level.  For more information, please visit www.iclei.org/ccp.Juneau is one of 204 local governments in the U.S.A. that are currently Members of ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability.  For more information on ICLEI and its activities in the U.S.A., please go to www.iclei.org/usa.Source:  “Climate Change:  Predicted Impacts on Juneau”,
Scientific Panel on Climate Change, City and Borough of Juneau, April 2007.

 

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