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Identification of Regions in Alaska Susceptible to Landscape Deformation Due to “Climate Priming” of Permafrost Soils

Principal Investigator
Robert Bolton


Release Date
Start Date
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The thawing of ice-rich soils in permafrost landscapes, a process known as thermokarst, can result in profound impacts on the energy and water balance, carbon fluxes, wildlife habitat, and existing infrastructure in the local area. The Alaska Thermokarst Model is a “state-and-transition" model being developed to simulate landscape evolution in polygonal tundra landscapes commonly found on the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska. This study will focus on the second step of the landscape evolution process – initiation of the thermokarst process through the concept of “climate priming” of the landscape. “Climate priming” occurs when there is high early and total winter snow precipitation, above normal winter temperatures, and above average [...]

Child Items (3)


Principal Investigator :
Robert Bolton
Cooperator/Partner :
Rawser Spicer
CMS Group :
Climate Adaptation Science Centers (CASC) Program
Funding Agency :
Alaska CASC

Attached Files

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“Permafrost in Alaska. Credit: Brandt Meixell, USGS. Public Domain”
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Project Extension

projectStatusIn Progress

Permafrost in Alaska. Credit: Brandt Meixell, USGS. Public Domain
Permafrost in Alaska. Credit: Brandt Meixell, USGS. Public Domain


Spatial Services

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  • Alaska CASC
  • National and Regional Climate Adaptation Science Centers



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