by Anna Nikandrova, Havu Pellikka, Ksenia Tabakova, Mary Butwin, Merete Bachmann and Meri Korhonen aka group Fem(me)
Retreating glaciers are changing the landscape of Greenland and raising sea levels globally. While this is bad news for coastal residents around the globe, a fisherman in Southern Greenland now has an amazing opportunity. With warmer waters the Mackerel has been introduced and, thus, the future of the fishermen looks bright.
Almost every day we hear about how bad climate change is for the Earth and the population. Yet after speaking with locals in Nuuk and experiencing a small part of the Greenlandic culture, we got some other perspectives. In Greenland, a vast island almost wholly covered by the huge ice sheet, many of the residents view the climate change in a positive light.
We have found that some of the glaciers have moved incredibly fast and retreated greatly during the last 15 years. That is one of the best illustrations of the recent climatic changes in Greenland. We also spoke with Esben Ehlers and Per Roe from the Ministry of Fishery, Hunting and Agriculture to learn about the future of the fishing industry in this changing environment.
Per and Esben explained that Greenlandic people are very skilled at adapting, and change is something they are used to handling.
The Fishery department pointed out that the warmer temperatures have resulted in the introduction of the Mackerel to Greenland which is a big opportunity for the industry which already covers 95% of the country´s export. Furthermore, the cod is moving further North and the Arctic cod may be possible to fish industrially if the right marketing is used to promote the sales.
Climate change modifies our environment and familiar way of living, but in Greenland the people accept this change as a part of their life. Fishing will continue to be an important part of their culture and economy.
This experience was possible because of ABS Summer School about the Effects of Climate Change on Ecosystems and Societies 2016.