As part of an interdisciplinary, independent study project in both the media arts and environmental studies, Ross Henry, a junior at St. Michael’s College, is telling the story of climate change’s devastating effects on both the landscape and the culture of Alaska. Throughout the month of March, Ross is on the front lines of climate change: remote villages, century old glaciers, iconic dog mushing races, and entire ecosystems. Ross hopes his documentary, will both educate about a region that is misunderstood, but also inspire people to realize the beautiful regions that are teetering on destruction.
The 2016 Iditarod restart in Willow, Alaska. Dog teams move through forests and across frozen lakes, on their way North to Nome.The waters of the Matanuska Glacier flood the valley. This usually only happens in the summer, but the rivers were at full flow even in March.On the shores of the Yukon River in Russian Mission, there are no garages or covers for the summer fishing gear, just the beaches. The Yukon River used to be flowing with salmon, but because of over fishing by commercial fishing companies–salmon are hard to come by.Just on the outskirts of Russain Mission, in the Yukon Delta, a carcass of a moose lay in the bushes. The moose population is under attack by the tumultuous climate of Alaska. Alaska is feeling the effects of climate change 2 to 3 times more than anywhere else in the country.Russian Mission is a village that depends on nature for both its food and economy. This Russian Mission women is fishing for dinner, and is lucky to have caught a fish. The Yukon River, where this photos was shot– was once teeming with Salmon, but because of overfishing by commercial operations the river is now mostly bare.