Available building space is constrained by a combination of landscape hazards, restricted areas and ground that is unsuitable for development. Land uses, including garbage dumps, airports, cemeteries, quarries and housing developments, are competing for the minimal amount of desirable land that is available. Meanwhile, changing climate may be impacting land suitability as a result of the effects of thawing permafrost on land stability or changing precipitation and snowmelt patterns exceeding community drainage capacity.
Our project addresses the issue of building land in Nunatsiavut communities through the production of planning constraint maps that identify available, suitable areas for development across a range of land uses and under current and projected future climate states.
These maps combine existing community information with Inuit Knowledge and new geoscientific data in a user friendly, georeferenced information database to support community infrastructure planning and development decisions. Each community database will compile for the first time digital information on community infrastructure and resources, landscape characteristics and hazards, regulated land areas, protected and valued spaces and places, climate and environmental modeling, and sustainable planning. The databases will then be used to inform the creation of new sustainable plans for Nunatsiavut communities.