Climate Science Primer: Projections for the Middle Kuskokwim Region
Throughout western Alaska, residents report changes in weather, seasons, landscape, plants, and wildlife. All of these changes can affect peoples’ health, culture, and livelihoods. Local infrastructure is also at risk from flooding, permafrost melt, and wildfire. Many changes are already occurring, and many more are expected to occur in the future.
If aggressive global action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is taken, the long term magnitude of climate change will be reduced, and local strategies to adapt will be more successful. Even if action is taken, however, the next few decades are expected to experience drastic change because of greenhouse gases already emitted. Local action and planning to reduce the impacts of those changes are needed.
This climate change primer provides information on the expected trends and impacts associated with climate change, specific to the Native Village of Georgetown and the surrounding region along the Kuskokwim River in southwestern Alaska. Understanding climate change trends and impacts is the first step in developing a vulnerability assessment for the village.