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Summertime - and My House Fell Down!

Living on permafrost (frozen ground) can be tricky.

Agriculture, mining, water supply, sewage disposal, and construction are all seriously affected by the expansion and contraction of permafrost soils during cycles of freezing and thawing.

Permafrost, when it is a solid structure of frozen soil, can be an ideal foundation upon which to build. However, above-freezing temperatures can turn it into a soft, slurry-like material which can cause damage to buildings and structures as the foundations become unstable (picture).

To prevent this, ground level buildings are sometimes built with a double floor that circulates cold air between the building and the ground. Other buildings are simply built well above ground to keep any heat they generate from thawing the permafrost out.

However, such methods can't protect a building against climate changes. Recent warming trends in the Arctic over recent years have already resulted in damaged roads, buildings, pipelines and other structures.

Click pictures for more information and credits.
Library: Arctic, Land, The Winter Road
Links: Arctic, Environment, Cold Places
Guide to Arctic Sunrise & Sunset
Arctic Maps & Weather Reports

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A Guide to Arctic Sunrise and Sunset GUIDE TO ARCTIC SUNRISE & SUNSET: How much sunlight or darkness is there in the Arctic on each day of the year?

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