Scientists urge federal government to ramp up conservation efforts in eastern Arctic

CBC discusses why Scientists urge federal government to ramp up conservation efforts in eastern Arctic. Scientists say the collapse of the Milne Ice Shelf highlights the needs for more conservation in the area.

A team of Canadian scientists is urging the federal government to step up its conservation efforts in the eastern Arctic to try and save some of the last remaining year-round sea ice and the undiscovered organisms that live within it.

In a new article, Witnessing Ice Habitat Collapse in the Canadian Arctic, released Thursday in the journal Science, Carleton University geologist Derek Mueller and biologist Warwick Vincent of Laval University highlight the July 2020 collapse of the Milne Ice Shelf, the last known intact ice shelf in the Canadian Arctic.

Over a two day period, the 4,000 year-old Milne Shelf broke apart, sending 43 per cent of its mass adrift into the Arctic Ocean as smaller ice islands.

The Milne Shelf is located within the Tuvaijuittuq marine protected area, which, perhaps ironically, translates to “the place where the ice never melts” in Inuktitut. It’s home to the oldest and thickest sea ice in the Arctic Ocean.

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