Fieldwork in the Arctic

Graduate students Nicole Peletz from UBC and Bethany Thiessen from U. Saskatchewan joined UBC’s Dr. Kevin Hanna for fieldwork in Nunavut in July. They worked in Cambridge Bay and met with Board members and staff of the Nunavut Impact Review Board (NIRB).

The project examines community information needs in the impact assessment (IA) process. The focus is on projects that have a marine component, such as shipping, building docks, or operating loading facilities.

Nicole’s research helps identify gaps in baseline data related to marine impacts; and help determine how Inuit Quajimajatuqangit (knowledge) has been used alongside and in absence of “Western” science in the IA process. Her research will provide information to help NIRB as it develops communication material for community consultation.

Bethany’s research helps build an understanding how information about the impacts of marine shipping and mitigation strategies are communicated throughout the IA process. Her work will help support decision-making and provide a better understanding of the marine related impacts and concerns often considered in IA.

Funding is provided by Irving Ship Building International, with additional support from the Northern Scientific Training Program, Polar Knowledge Canada, Nunavut Research Institute, and the Nunavut Impact Review Board.