In response to Canada’s upcoming position as Chair of the Arctic Council, with Leona Aglukkaq (Federal Minister of Health) at the helm, myself and the members of the Climate Change Adaptation Research Group at McGill University authored an open letter for immediate circulation. As we say in the letter,
Canadian leadership of the Arctic Council is an opportunity to showcase the tremendous potential of the Canadian North; it is also an opportunity to examine ourselves, as Canadians and as a country with a proud and enduring Northern culture, for the purposes of reflection and change. We tender this letter as researchers, but more importantly, as Canadians with deep and abiding respect for the Arctic and its residents.
As Canadians, we feel it is particularly important that your leadership of the Arctic Council be based on an understanding of the realities and impacts of climate change in the North, and on an appreciation of the rapid changes in temperature, snowfall patterns, and sea ice extent throughout the Canadian and circumpolar regions.