Recent Canadian research on permafrost is reviewed, concentrating on permafrost- climate relations, the processes of thermokarst, ice-wedge development, frost heave and soil convection, and ground ice studies. This field of geomorphology is often of direct interest to engineers and managers of northern resource development. While industrial activity in the Arctic is currently slow, concern for the effects of permafrost stability of global climate warming has stimulated research. Much of the work on the potential consequences to permafrost of climate change is by modelling: there are yet few relevant field data, although this is crucial for model evaluation. Studies of permafrost processes usually rely on geotechnical or geophysical theory too: the review concentrates on the use of field evidence in support of analytical models of landform development. Current research on ground ice is of a more geological nature: we examine approaches to the delineation and origin of massive ice.

Additional Metadata
Keywords frost heave, ground ice, ice wedges, periglacial processes, permafrost and climate, thermokarst
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1177/030913339301700204
Journal Progress in Physical Geography
Citation
Burn, C, & Smith, M.W. (1993). Issues in Canadian permafrost research. Progress in Physical Geography, 17(2), 156–172. doi:10.1177/030913339301700204