Severe Weather

On October 3, 1963, Barrow, Alaska set a new record for severe weather. The most violent storm in memory struck that day.

Both scientists and residents have witnessed more damaging storms in the Arctic since the 1960s — as warming temperatures affect most of the region.

The first two lines of defence against waves are sea ice and permafrost. Both of these have weakened as the Arctic’s climate has warmed. So increasingly, Barrow and other coastal communities risk more flooding and erosion when a storm hits. The 2005 Arctic sea ice extent was at a record low.