Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Front line climate change: tiny Tuk

(AP) TUKTOYAKTUK, Northwest Territories – Caught between rising seas and land melting beneath their mukluk-shod feet, the villagers of Tuktoyaktuk are doing what anyone would do on this windy Arctic coastline. They're building windmills.

That's wind-power turbines, to be exact — a token first try at "getting rid of this fossil fuel we're using," said Mayor Merven Gruben. It's a token of irony, too: People little to blame, but feeling it most, are doing more to stop global warming than many of "you people in the south," as Gruben calls the rest of us who fill the skies with greenhouse gases.

They're feeling climate change not only in this lonely corner of northwest Canada, but in a wide circle at the top of the world, stretching from Alaska through the Siberian tundra, into northern Scandinavia and Greenland, and on to Canada's eastern Arctic islands, a circle of more than 300,000 indigenous people, including Gruben and the 800 other Inuvialuit, or Inuit, of the village they know as "Tuk." More>>