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Permafrost underlies 22% of the Northern Hemisphere's exposed land surface and is thawing at an alarming rate as a direct consequence of climate change. When thawing, permafrost releases large quantities of organic matter and contaminants into the environment. What’s more, permafrost thaw dramatically impacts infrastructure in local communities with wide-ranging consequences for health, economy, and society.

ILLUQ is an EU project seeking answers to these complex issues. The project builds on the “One Health” concept, which recognises that human health is interconnected with environmental and animal health. By bringing together an interdisciplinary consortium committed to participatory research with local stake- and rightsholders, ILLUQ will provide the first holistic look at permafrost thaw, pollution, and human and environmental well-being in the Arctic. The project will deliver vital information on the risks from contaminant release, infrastructure failure, and ecosystem changes to stakeholders.

The project is hosted at the Alfred Wegener Institute in Potsdam, Germany, with partners and collaborators in Austria, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Italy, Norway, and the Netherlands, as well as in Canada, Greenland and Svalbard.

ILLUQ will run for four years from 1.1.2024 to 31.12.2027.

Status: In progress

Type: Polar

Programme: Polar and Climate

Tags: Arctic permafrost one health

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