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Temperatures at Old Crow
 
Long-term temperatures from tree rings
 
Summer temperatures in Northern Yukon

 

Arctic Borderlands Ecological Knowledge Co-op

Temperatures at Aklavik

Temperatures at Aklavik

What is happening?

  • This set of graphs shows average temperatures for spring, summer, fall and winter at Aklavik based on measurements taken since 1926, with no data over a 20-year period.
  • Summers, and winters show a significant increase in mean temperature over time.
  • Average temperatures in the spring and fall at Aklavik do not show any clear trends over time.

Why is it happening?

  • Increases in global mean temperatures have been predicted as a result of increases in atmospheric greenhouse gases generated by human activities. These changes have been predicted to be greatest in the polar regions.
  • Temperature changes may also result from natural climate variations, such as the decrease in temperatures that brought about the "Little Ice Age" cooling period in the 19th century for much of the northern hemisphere.
  • Annual variability in mean temperatures is often large, and the detection of trends in climate generally requires long-term data sets.

Why is it important?

  • Changes in global and regional climate have important implications for many aspects of the environment. In the North, temperature warming may bring about changes in sea, lake and river ice, snow conditions, permafrost, habitat for plants and animals, and other changes. For human communities, this may mean changes in agricultural productivity, sustainable hunting levels, heating fuel consumption, and patterns of land use. These effects may be both positive and negative, and are likely to vary from region to region.
  • One of the greatest concerns associated with human-induced global climate change is the rate of global temperature changes -- temperatures in this region are expected to increase by at least as much and faster than after the last ice age (about 10,000 years ago).

Technical Notes

  • Trends in temperature were tested using data obtained between 1926 and 2006. The trendlines on the graph are significant at p<0.05.
  • The data presented in these graphs are averages of mean monthly temperature data for March-May, June-August, September-November, and December-February, provided by Environment Canada. Winter means are calculated using December values of the current year, and January and February values of the following year.
  • Missing data points are due to a lack of sufficient data to calculate seasonal averages for those years, e.g. 2005 and 2007.

Text revised: Dec. 17, 2010     Data added: Dec. 17, 2010