The Arctic Tundra, Case study

Where is it?
Northern Canada, Alaska and Siberia
1 of 18
How large?
8 million km2
2 of 18
What is the annual precipitation?
50-350mm - most falling as snow
3 of 18
How much carbon does the permafrost hold in total
4 of 18
What is the Net Primary Productivity?
less than 200 grams /m2 /year
5 of 18
Where in the North slope of Alaska was oil and gas discovered in 1968?
Prudhoe Bay
6 of 18
How much of the planet's undiscovered natural gas did the US Geological Survey predict there to be?
7 of 18
How much undiscovered oil?
8 of 18
What are the benefits of this?
Jobs provided, companies help enrich local communities contributing to tax revenues etc, tapping previously unused reserves could bring down the price for the consumer, improves energy security, oil and gas provide 90% of Alaska's revenues
9 of 18
How long is the Trans Alaskan Pipeline?
800 miles long
10 of 18
How does this impact the water and carbon cycle?
Melts the permafrost - can release CO2 into the atmosphere
11 of 18
At what temperature does the oil travel?
60 degrees
12 of 18
Oil spills
US Geological Survey thinks only 1-20% can be recovered from a spill. The area can take decades to recover back to previous state. E.g. BP Oil spill, 2010
13 of 18
Dalton Highway (roads)
Dust deposited along roadsides darkens the surface leading to increasing absorption of sunlight - permafrost melts
14 of 18
Construction (buildings)
Permafrost melting releases carbon into the atmosphere that was previously locked away
15 of 18
Oil (gas) flaring
Adds CO2 and methane into the atmosphere. Soot landing on ice impacts the albedo effect. Gas flaring accounts for 42% of black carbon
16 of 18
Vegetation and permafrost removed
17 of 18
Name 5 strategies for combatting these issues and explain them?
Insulated ice and gravel pads, buildings and pipelines elevated on piles, drilling laterally beyond drilling platforms, more powerful computers that can detect oil and gas-bearing structures remotely, refrigerated supports
18 of 18

Other cards in this set

Card 2


How large?


8 million km2

Card 3


What is the annual precipitation?


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


How much carbon does the permafrost hold in total


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


What is the Net Primary Productivity?


Preview of the front of card 5
View more cards


No comments have yet been made

Similar Geography resources:

See all Geography resources »See all Case studies resources »