case study Alaskan tundra

case study notes on the alaskan tundra, key oppertuites and challenges, solutions to the challenges and the environmental and political impacts of the oil and gas explotiation

HideShow resource information
Preview of case study Alaskan tundra

First 233 words of the document:

Case study- Alaskan tundra
Contains world's 4th largest glaciated area, 40% of USA's surface water,
largest fisheries, wilderness areas and land designated for parks, reserves
and wildlife refuges.
Large oil/gas reserves
Significant indigenous population (Gwich'in and Impuit tribes) subsidence
agriculture- depend on environment for food and supplies.
Resource exploitation
Oil/gas extraction- Prudhoe bay, Northern Alaska
Forestry and agriculture in the interior
Fishing in Bering sea
Key challenges
Below freezing temperatures
Extremes of climate- warmer near coast
Climate change- increase melt of permafrost making land difficult to build
on and lead to subsidence problems.
Tectonic activity- high level of earthquakes
Waste disposal- slow decomposition due to cold temperatures
Lack of daylight hours in winter
Remoteness- extra transport and infrastructure needed
Fuel freezes in vehicles
Elevation of houses on pile driven stilts
Larger unheated buildings and airstrips can be safely constructed on gravel
Pipelines insulated and elevated on stilts
Oil production
Oil pumped along TAP's (Trans Alaskan pipeline) at 80 degrees C.
Warm oil melts permafrost
Pipeline sits on insulated supports 3m above ground to span rivers and allow
animals like Caribou to migrate
Costs $8 billion to build- started in 1968

Other pages in this set

Page 2

Preview of page 2

Here's a taster:

Pipeline built on sleepers
12 pumping stations control oil flow and close down sections if a spillage
Environmental impacts
TAP's disrupts migration of caribou
Oil spills (most recent Feb. 2006) have degraded habitats
Seismic exploration disturbs animals both on the tundra and Nearshore
water in Arctic Ocean.…read more

Page 3

Preview of page 3

Here's a taster:

Income from oil pays for 85% of public Offshore exploration may damage
service in Alaska whaling industry for Impuit tribe in
northern Alaska
People receive oil dividend (one off
payment from oil money)…read more


No comments have yet been made

Similar Geography resources:

See all Geography resources »See all resources »