Northern Canada is one of the most rapidly warming regions on Earth. Climate change is dramatically changing landscapes across the North, affecting bodies of water, permafrost, snow cover, forests, wildlife, and many systems that rely on these resources, including transportation, energy and community health.
The Northern Water Futures (NWF) project is a direct response to water security challenges posed by climate change in the North. NWF is a Northwest Territories-focused consortium of knowledge producers, mobilizers and users from communities, government, industry, non-governmental organizations and universities, working collaboratively to understand, predict and address the impacts of climate change and industrial expansion on shared water resources across the Northwest Territories.
The project, which received $2 million in funding from Global Water Futures, is taking a leading role in sustainable development in the North through science-based environmental prediction models, decision support tools and mitigation strategies that will lead to prudent investment and knowledge-based community adaptation.
NWF is led by Laurier Associate Professor Jennifer Baltzer, who is Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Forests and Global Change and a member of the College of New Scholars, Artists and Scientists of the Royal Society of Canada. It also involves dozens of co-investigators and collaborators from other universities, various levels of government, public agencies, First Nations, Northwest Territories communities and civil society organizations.
Major areas of research for NWF include: