環境議題 系列 第三名
United States, for National Geographic
Environment 3rd Prize Stories
Children cross a flooded walkway in Newtok, Alaska, on a summer bird hunt. Their village is rapidly sinking and shrinking as a result of thawing permafrost and erosion.
The Arctic permafrost is thawing at a faster rate than climatologists predicted, releasing carbon gases that could speed up global heating. Permafrost is carbon-rich frozen soil that covers 24% of the Northern Hemisphere land mass. As it thaws, it releases carbon dioxide and methane. The thaw impacts people living in the region as it undermines house foundations, makes the landscape more difficult to navigate and causes ice cellars (homemade freezers dug into the permafrost) to flood and provisions to spoil.