Alaska Seeing Impact of Climate Change in its Infrastructure, Villages
Climate change looks more dramatic in a place like Newtok, a Yupik village on the west coast of Alaska.
This can be achieved by pouring deeper fills for roads to insulate the ground underneath. Engineers might also use larger rocks on highway embankments to allow air to circulate, chilling the ground.
Crews currently plow snow onto the shoulder of roads or runways, which insulates the shoulder and prevents frost from penetrating.
They are experimenting with clearing the shoulders to allow cold to penetrate deeper.
Adapting to the future
Transportation managers are designing new infrastructure that can adapt to future impacts of climate change.
That could mean larger culverts, more bridge spans or siting structures like airports higher, above flood zones.
And, for communities near oceans and rivers, that means making buildings that can be relocated if needed.
Contact staff writer Molly Rettig at 459-7590.