The IPA’s Yedoma Region Action Group publishes a special issue in Frontiers in Earth Science

Facilitated by the IPA’s Action Group The Yedoma Region a special issue “Yedoma permafrost landscapes as past archives, present and future change areas” was published in Frontiers in Earth Science in summer 2022.

The Action Group compiled the latest knowledge on the ice-rich permafrost deposits of late Pleistocene age called Yedoma, which covers several million km² of the Arctic main land between the Taymyr Peninsula and the Yukon of northwest Canada, and from Central Yakutia to the Arctic shelves during the Last Glacial Maximum. Papers of this special issue include a broad overview on current knowledge in permafrost research. For over 150 years research was undertaken to highlight the formation and development of Yedoma deposits based on cryolithological and paleo-environmental records, and to deduce present Yedoma landscape dynamics and their future response to climate change (Fig. 1). The general idea of this paper collection was to decipher the environmental controls of sedimental deposition and storage of organic matter, as well as contaminants frozen in Yedoma landscapes. This required an interdisciplinary approach to understand the extrinsic (climate) and intrinsic (periglacial processes) controls on permafrost aggradation and degradation. This paper collection brings together 27 scientific articles at 67 study sites in Russia and Alaska (Fig. 1), involving 149 authors from 68 institutions in eleven countries.

This collection is the final activity of the IPA Action Group “The Yedoma Region: A Synthesis of Circum-Arctic Distribution and Thickness”.

Fig. 1. Distribution of Yedoma Research Topic study sites. Red circles—single sites that are subject of the various papers in the Research Topic; Yellow circles—locations of the historical observations according to Shur et al. 2022 (Map by Sebastian Laboor, AWI).

Submitted by
Lutz Schirrmeister
Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI)