Pan-Territorial Adaptation Strategy

Guiding Principles

This Pan-Territorial Adaptation Strategy is guided by the principles of

  • Working together and with all levels of government in a transparent and open manner
  • Building on existing climate change adaptation actions and initiatives within and across the territories
  • Using an informed approach based on science and traditional and local knowledge
  • Developing and applying initiatives that are feasible and well-suited for the North


Northwest Territories

Map of Northwest Territories

Abbreviated winter road season*

Cold winters are needed in order to build roads over otherwise impassable lakes and muskeg. Most years the Tibbitt to Contwoyto winter road is open 70 days, but the warm winter of 2005-06 meant only 50 days of use thanks to a late start and early closure. Only 6,841 loads out of the planned 9,000 loads made it by truck into the Diavik Diamond Mine, which then had to spend tens of millions of dollars flying in 13,000 tonnes of dry cargo and 11,000 tonnes of fuel.

Coastal erosion

Tuktoyaktuk has experienced significant coastal erosion due to reduced sea ice, melting permafrost and rising sea levels that interact with storms and storm surges. The community has moved several buildings inland, including the school and police station.

*Abbreviated Winter Road Season
Ashbury, Douglas. “Over the Top.” Rio Tinto Review. September 2006. 79: 9-14. http://www.diavik.ca/documents/Diavik_Airlift.pdf Accessed 15 October 2010

Photos courtesy of Patrick Kane/Up Here, Dianne Villesèche/www.ravenink.ca and ArcticNet. © 2016 A Northern Vision