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Boom and Bust - For fisherman in Alaska it has been another summer of extremes. In Bristol Bay, the salmon fishery had a very big year, its biggest in history. Over 63 million sockeye returned, allowing commercial fisherman to also set some records. July 1st was the biggest single day with a whopping 1.8 million fish harvested. Fisheries managers are pointing to Bristol Bay as a "shining beacon" of how good a job we are doing managing our fisheries resources. That is pretty jaw dropping, not just because of the big year in Bristol Bay, but also given the fact that only 160 miles to the north, the picture is so completely opposite. A total collapse of the Yukon chum salmon fishery requiring not only closures but emergency shipments of fish from other parts of the state. No chest thumping on the Yukon, only the heart break of empty fish houses, lost jobs and livelihoods and disbelief that a salmon run that has spanned the ages, could just... stop. It is a story that resonates with many communities across Alaska. Disbelief in the current state of our fisheries, and uncertainty for the future. Since 2015 LEO Network has documented dozens of reports of salmon die-offs and troubling returns. A reminder that one strong fishery in one season does not spell success and that many fisheries are struggling or in decline. This summer's Yukon chum salmon fishery also resonates with other harvest failures across the circumpolar north. From the unprecedented loss of a food crop like strawberries in Norway, to a mass die-off of reindeer in Russia. In these places the land has stopped providing and it is the local fisherman, farmers, herders and hunters that bear witness, and the consequences when our knowledge and management strategies are eclipsed by a new, unfamiliar and unforgiving environment. Mike Brubaker, Editor

Dillingham, Alaska, United States
Alaska Public Media / July 21, 2021

Bristol Bay’s 2021 sockeye run is the largest on record: 63.2 million fish have returned to the bay, breaking the 2018 record of 62.9 million.

Read article on Alaska Public Media



Bethel, Alaska, United States
Yereth Rosen / ArcticToday / August 11, 2021

A decades-long decline in salmon in the Yukon River has reached a crisis this year, forcing harvest closures and prompting emergency shipments of salmon from other regions of Alaska to river residents who are otherwise facing food shortages.

Read article on ArcticToday



Utskarpen, Rana, Nordland, Norway
Synnøve Sundby Fallmyr / NRK / August 18, 2021

All farmer Arild Stenhaug is left with is tiny berries that cannot be sold. He believes the cause is climate change. "We have to listen to a farmer who has lost everything," says a researcher.

Read article on NRK



Khatanga, Krasnoyarskiy, Russia
ArcticToday / August 15, 2021

A state of emergency was declared in mid-August in Khatanga, a small town on the banks of the river of the same name in Russia’s far northern Taymyr Peninsula, after more than 1,200 dead reindeer were found scattered on the river’s banks.

Read article on ArcticToday



CBC / September 7, 2021

It's not the first time snow geese have died in large numbers in western Nunavut. The cause of this event is under investigation, but overpopulation could have played a role, says the Canadian Wildlife Service.

Read article on CBC



Scotland, United Kingdom
BBC News / August 31, 2021

Scottish Water says storage levels at some sites are at 66% amid one of the driest summers in 160 years.

Read article on BBC News



Inuvik, Northwest Territories, Canada
Mackenzie Scott / CBC /

It wasn’t part of your imagination if you thought it was warmer this summer in the Northwest Territories. Inuvik experienced its seventh warmest summer on record according to data from Environment and Climate Change Canada.

Read article on CBC



Russia
The Moscow Times / September 2, 2021

Banned goods would include disposable plastic straws, plates, glasses, lids and appliances; coffee capsules; cotton swabs; opaque and colored PET (thermoplastic polyester) bottles; boxes and packs for tobacco products; blister packaging (except for medicines); egg cartons; and several types of bags.

Read article on The Moscow Times



The Northern Climate Observer is published by the Center for Climate and Health. We track news coverage from across the circumpolar north and provide readers with a curated roundup of climate change related events. Thank you for reading our newsletter and for paying attention to our changing world.

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The Northern Climate Observer is published weekly by the Center for Climate and Health. We track news coverage from across the circumpolar north and provide readers with a curated roundup of climate change related events.

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