Warming Erodes An Alaskan Village

The effects of climate change are claiming a small Alaskan island community, with rising water levels and melting permafrost eroding the land beneath the homes of the village's 600 people. Relocation seems to be the only option to save the village.

"For several decades the people of this barrier island have been fighting a losing battle with nature."

"Not only are the glaciers melting, causing sea levels to rise, but the frozen ground on which the village was built - also known as permafrost - is thawing, making the ground crumble like sand."

"Shishmaref is a community that is literally being swallowed by the sea."

"Village elder Tony Weyiouanna estimates the tide moves an average of 10 feet (three metres) closer to the land every year."

"Two homes have already toppled into the sea, others have wilted and buckled and now teeter ominously at the cliff's edge."

Full Story: Island people swallowed by the sea


Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $245
Planetizen Courses image ad

Planetizen Courses

Advance your career with subscription-based online courses tailored to the urban planning professional.
Starting at $16.95 a month

A Short History of America

From comic book artist Robert Crumb, poster shows how the built environment has changed throughout the decades.
Book cover of Contemporary Debates in Urban Planning

Contemporary Debates in Urban Planning

Featuring thought-provoking commentary and insights from some of the leading thinkers and practitioners in the field.