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TitleActive layer detachment slides and retrogressive thaw slumps susceptibility mapping for current and future permafrost distribution, Yukon Alaska Highway Corridor
AuthorBlais-Stevens, A; Kremer, M; Bonnaventure, P P; Smith, S L; Lipovsky, P; Lewkovicz, A G
SourceEngineering Geology for Society and Territory - Volume 1; by Lollino, G (ed.); Manconi, A (ed.); Clague, J (ed.); Shan, W (ed.); Chiarle, M (ed.); 2015 p. 449-453, 86
Alt SeriesEarth Sciences Sector, Contribution Series 20130369
Mediapaper; digital; on-line
File formatpdf
NTS105A/01; 105A/02; 105A/03; 105A/04; 105A/05; 105A/06; 105A/07; 105A/11; 105A/12; 105A/13; 105B; 105C; 105D; 105E; 105F; 105G/01; 105G/02; 105G/03; 105G/04; 105G/05; 105G/06; 105G/07; 105G/11; 105G/12; 105G/13; 115A; 115B; 115C; 115F; 115G; 115H
AreaWhithorse; Kluane Lake; Haines Junction
Lat/Long WENS-141.0000 -128.0000 62.0000 60.0000
Subjectsengineering geology; surficial geology/geomorphology; landslides; landslide deposits; slumps; slump structures; slope deposits; slope failures; slope stability; permafrost; freezing ground; ground ice
Illustrationslocation maps; photographs; tables
Programenvironmental impacts and adaptation in the northern environment, Environmental Geoscience
AbstractThe Yukon portion of the Alaska Highway Corridor traverses the discontinuous permafrost zone. Air-photos and high resolution satellite imagery were used to produce an updated landslide inventory (2013) that identified 1400 landslides in the corridor. Landslide susceptibility models were developed for the corridor for two types of landslides triggered in permafrost, active layer detachment slides (ALD) and retrogressive thaw slumps (RTS), which comprise about 3% of the inventory. A qualitative heuristic approach was used to combine data layers for slope, vegetation, surficial geology unit, slope aspect, and permafrost distribution. ALD and RTS susceptibility maps were produced for present day permafrost distribution and also equilibrium permafrost distribution resulting from air temperature increases of 1 to 5°C. The resulting susceptibility maps indicate that with warming and reduced permafrost extent, there will be fewer zones of high susceptibility. The maps for warmer conditions give a "snapshot" of a potential decrease in zones of high landslide susceptibility, but they do not show the potential landslide occurrence as permafrost warms and thaws. It is expected that as permafrost warms and thaws, ALD and RTS activity will increase until conditions stabilize as permafrost disappears.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
This is study is funded by the Program for Energy Research and Development within the Environmental Geoscience Program. It is a collaboration with the Yukon Geological Survey and the University of Ottawa. Our aim is to fill knowledge gaps related to landslides triggered in permafrost for a potential pipeline route along the Alaska Highway Corridor. The landslide susceptibility model approach incorporated data layers such as slope, slope aspect, vegetation, surface sediment type, and high resolution permafrost distribution. Using high resolution permafrost distribution models, we created landslide susceptibility maps for current conditions and future warming conditions up to 5°C for active layer detachment slides and retrogressive thaw slumps.