Construction of Ice Roads Under Climate Change Conditions

Summary

Warming temperatures in northern regions and the associated degradation of permafrost and lake ice cover in cold climates may produce many challenges in the preservation of winter ice roads. Indeed, most engineering projects in the north require a substantial research component in order to understand local conditions and climate trends. Over the past decades, the consulting engineering company EBA developed new practices and technical solutions to manage Arctic infrastructure facing climate variability and long-term changes. For example, increased truck loads on roads built out of snow and ice are allowed while the climate is warming and the ice cover is reducing. Furthermore, EBA has conceived a robust management approach by working with universities and government agencies, such as the University of Alberta and Natural Resources Canada, which might help to obtain quality data and support research on a changing climate and its impacts.

Key take-away

Partnership and collaboration between companies, universities, and government agencies may help to apply research to engineering projects

Further reading

Ice Road Assessment, Modeling and Management

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