Milder winters raise ice road anxiety – Winnipeg Free Press

Milder winters raise ice road anxiety – Winnipeg Free Press

Remote Manitoba communities worried over looming loss of land access


AS climate change makes Manitoba winters increasingly unpredictable, leaders in remote First Nations are crossing their fingers, hoping for a long-lasting winter road season so residents can travel and essential goods can be transported via truck.

“Every year, you worry: ‘If they’re not done this year, then what?’” said John Clarke, chief of Barren Lands First Nation. “It is our lifeline. If there was no winter road, then we’d have to fly everything in and we could never afford that.”

Clarke, 48, said the community used to be able to rely on some roads opening in mid-December and remaining accessible for three months. The network has yet to freeze for the season; he expects it’ll be between early and mid-January, the new normal in recent years.

Melting glaciers and rising sea levels have become sure signs of the real impact climate change has on the planet— but a group of researchers recently put a microscope on the way warmer weather affects freshwater ice on lakes and rivers in the northern hemisphere.

Read original full article by Maggie Macintosh here:

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