Daniel Fortier

Daniel Fortier
Université de Montréal | UdeM · Department of Geography

Ph. D.

About

297
Publications
66,579
Reads
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2,202
Citations
Additional affiliations
June 2015 - present
Université de Montréal
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
Description
  • Director Geocryolab, Research-Professor Center for Norhern Studies
June 2008 - June 2014
Université de Montréal
Position
  • Professor (Assistant)
September 2007 - September 2008
University of Alaska Fairbanks
Position
  • Professor (Assistant)

Publications

Publications (297)
Article
Full-text available
Recent excavation in the new CRREL Permafrost Tunnel in Fox, Alaska provides a unique opportunity to study properties of Yedoma — late Pleistocene ice- and organic-rich syngenetic permafrost. Yedoma has been described at numerous sites across Interior Alaska, mainly within the Yukon-Tanana upland. The most comprehensive data on the structure and pr...
Article
Full-text available
Ice patches are ubiquitous in polar regions and are a key element for landscape evolution. We present new insights into polar desert ice patch formation based on snow and ice properties at Ward Hunt Island (Canadian High Arctic, 83°N). Our results demonstrate that ice patches are composed of two distinct units. The upper unit is characterized by ve...
Article
This study tested the efficacy of air-convection-reflective sheds (ACRS) installed along the Alaska Highway in Yukon (Canada) as a mitigation technique to reduce heat absorption during the thawing season and to increase heat loss during the freezing season. Soil surface, air, and ground temperatures were recorded under the ACRS between 2008 and 201...
Article
Full-text available
Since the discovery of frozen megafauna carcasses in Northern Siberia and Alaska in the early 1800s, the Yedoma phenomenon has attracted many Arctic explorers and scientists. Exposed along coastal and riverbank bluffs, Yedoma often appears as large masses of ice with some inclusions of sediment. The ground ice particularly mystified geologists and...
Preprint
Full-text available
In formerly glaciated permafrost regions, extensive areas are still underlain by a considerable amount of glacier ice buried by glacigenic sediments. Although the extent and volume of undisturbed relict glacier ice are unknown, these ice bodies are predicted to melt with climate warming but their impact on landscape evolution remains poorly studied...
Article
Full-text available
Ice-rich permafrost in the circum-Arctic and sub-Arctic (hereafter pan-Arctic), such as late Pleistocene Yedoma, are especially prone to degradation due to climate change or human activity. When Yedoma deposits thaw, large amounts of frozen organic matter and biogeochemically relevant elements return into current biogeochemical cycles. This mobiliz...
Article
Full-text available
In polar deserts, depth hoar (hereinafter: DH) growth is not systematic unlike on tundra and this is critical for snowpack properties. Here, we address the spatio-temporal variability of the DH layer in the polar desert at two sites in the Canadian High Arctic: Ward Hunt Island (83° N) and Resolute Bay (75° N). Our data show that, over humid areas,...
Article
Surface energy balance (SEB) strongly influences the thermal state of permafrost, cryohydrological processes, and infrastructure stability. Road construction and snow accumulation affect the energy balance of underlying permafrost. Herein, we use an experimental road section of the Alaska Highway to develop a SEB model to quantify the surface energ...
Article
Riverbank erosion in yedoma regions strongly affects landscape evolution, biogeochemical cycling, sediment transport, and organic and nutrient fluxes to the Arctic Ocean. Since 2006, we have studied the 35‐m‐high Itkillik River yedoma bluff in northern Alaska, whose retreat rate during 1995–2010 was up to 19 m/yr, which is among the highest rates w...
Article
Climate change increases the risk of severe alterations to essential wildlife habitats. The Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) uses dens as shelters against cold temperatures and predators. These dens, needed for successful reproduction, are generally dug into the active layer on top of permafrost and reused across multiple generations. We assessed the vu...
Article
Full-text available
As permafrost thaws in the Arctic, new subsurface pathways open for the transport of groundwater, energy, and solutes. We identify different ways that these subsurface changes are driving observed surface consequences, including the potential for increased contaminant transport, modification to water resources, and enhanced rates of infrastructure...
Article
Lakes and ponds can be hotspots for CO2 and CH4 emissions, but Arctic studies remain scarce. Here we present diffusive and ebullition fluxes collected over several years from 30 ponds and 4 lakes formed on an organic‐rich polygonal tundra landscape. Water body morphology strongly affects the mixing regime—and thus the seasonal patterns in gas emiss...
Poster
Full-text available
Ice patches (aniuvat in Inuktitut) represent the smallest, but also the most common in absolute number, perennial ice masses at the earth’s surface. They are created by local accumulations of snow in favourable topographic sites, either by snow drifting or avalanching. The persistent snow masses gradually metamorphose into ice through complex therm...
Article
Ground ice distribution and abundance have wide-ranging effects on periglacial environments, and possible impacts on climate change scenarios. In contrast, very few studies measure ground ice in the High Arctic, especially in polar deserts and where coarse surficial material complicates coring operations. Ground ice volumes and cryostructures were...
Article
Full-text available
Thermokarst lakes are widespread and diverse across permafrost regions, and they are considered significant contributors to global greenhouse gas emissions. Paleoenvironmental reconstructions documenting the inception and development of these ecologically important water bodies are generally limited to Pleistocene-age permafrost deposits of Siberia...
Preprint
Full-text available
As permafrost thaws in the Arctic, new subsurface pathways open for the movement of groundwater, energy, and solutes. We identify different ways that these subsurface changes are driving observed surface phenomena, including the potential for increased contaminant transport, modification to water resources, and enhanced rates of infrastructure (e.g...
Article
Arctic slope hydrology studies suggest that water follows preferential subsurface flow paths known as water tracks. While subsurface flow is usually expected to transport only dissolved solids, periglacial studies have indicated some evidence of lessivage associated with flow through sorted patterned ground. We investigated the transport of dissolv...
Article
Investigations into the susceptibility of permafrost landscapes response to thermokarst can be performed using various approaches, depending on the scale of investigation. In many cases, point-based field measurements are extrapolated to larger scales and vice versa. The integration of scales often requires some form of ground control in addition t...
Article
Full-text available
Key Points:  High resolution mapping of frost table depths revealed the emergence of a pattern of uneven active layer thaw.  Hillslope structure and thaw processes created two distinct fill-and-spill domains; a surface domain and a subsurface domain.  Streamflow chemistry data indicate three distinct periods of streamflow generation during activ...
Article
Full-text available
In northern regions, transportation infrastructure can experience severe structural damages due to permafrost degradation. Water infiltration and subsurface water flow under an embankment affect the energy balance of roadways and underlying permafrost. However, the quantification of the processes controlling these changes and a detailed investigati...
Preprint
Full-text available
Abstract. Thermokarst lakes are widespread and diverse across permafrost regions and they are considered significant contributors to global greenhouse gas emissions. Paleoenvironmental reconstructions documenting the inception and development of these ecologically important water bodies are generally limited to Pleistocene-age permafrost deposits (...
Article
Full-text available
The progress of science is tied to the standardization of measurements, instruments, and data. This is especially true in the Big Data age, where analyzing large data volumes critically hinges on the data being standardized. Accordingly, the lack of community-sanctioned data standards in paleoclimatology has largely precluded the benefits of Big Da...
Poster
Full-text available
The perennial Ice patches refer to perennial ice masses of small size that could persist for several centuries and millennia. They are very common in absolute number all over the polar areas and have a wide range of implications on the landscape development and dynamics. In non-glaciated polar desert settings, such as in the High Arctic regions and...
Poster
Surface Energy Balance of Road Embankments in Permafrost Regions: A Data-Based Model Using 2008-2018 Thermal Monitoring of the Alaska Highway
Data
The dataset in this issue of Nordicana D comprises data collected remotely using LiDAR elevation data in the St. Lawrence Lowlands area (i.e., Québec, Ontario, Vermont, New-York State). It contains the location of beach ridges associated with the maximal extent of the Champlain Sea (11,100 to 9,400 years BP), a post-glacial sea that inundated the a...
Preprint
Thermokarst results from the thawing of ice-rich permafrost and alters the biogeochemical cycling in the Arctic by reworking soil material and redistributing soil organic carbon (SOC) and total nitrogen (TN) along uplands, hillslopes, and lowlands. Understanding the impact of this redistribution is key to better estimating the storage of SOC in per...
Poster
Full-text available
L'étude vise à déterminer si un corps de pergélisol alpin est présent dans la région sommitale du Mont Katahdin, Maine, aux États-Unis.
Article
Full-text available
Over the past decades, observations of buried glacier ice exposed in coastal bluffs and headwalls of retrogressive thaw slumps of the Arctic have indicated that considerable amounts of late Pleistocene glacier ice survived the deglaciation and are still preserved in permafrost. In exposures, relict glacier ice and intrasedimental ice often coexist...
Presentation
In northern regions, transportation infrastructure is experiencing severe structural damage due to the degradation of permafrost. Water infiltration and subsurface water flow under an embankment alter the energy balance of roadways and of the underlying permafrost. However, the quantification of these processes and a detailed investigation of their...
Poster
Perennial ice patches are considered as an intermediate state in the seasonal snow to glacier continuum. In non-glaciated polar desert settings, such as in the High Arctic regions and in the Antarctic dry valleys, melt water delivered by the ice patches through the summer represent the major source of water input into the hydrological cycle of smal...
Article
Full-text available
The Laurentide Ice Sheet (LIS) occupied a large part of North-America during the late Pleistocene. Determining the proper surface geometry and elevation of the LIS is of central importance to estimate global changes in sea-level and atmospheric circulation patterns during the late Pleistocene and Holocene. Despite largely disappearing from the land...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
We present a new research project related to permafrost and greenhouse gas (GHG) dynamics in Central Yakutia (Siberia). The main goal is to quantify fluxes, sources and ages of GHGs emitted from aquatic systems in response to permafrost degradation. We highlight five interconnected research axes, each defining a related ‘work package’ (WP). In addi...
Article
Full-text available
Over the past decades, observations of buried glacier ice exposed in coastal bluffs and headwalls of retrogressive thaw slumps of the Arctic indicate that considerable amounts of Pleistocene glacier ice survived the deglaciation and are still preserved in permafrost. In exposures, relict glacier ice and intrasedimental ice often coexist and look al...
Article
Full-text available
Preferential subsurface flow paths known as water tracks are often the principal hydrological pathways of headwater catchments in permafrost areas, exerting an influence on slope physical and biogeochemical processes. In polar deserts, where water resources depend on snow redistribution, water tracks are mostly found in hydrologically active areas...
Presentation
The Alaska Highway extends over 2200 km between central Alaska, U.S.A. and northern British-Columbia, Canada. This transportation corridor is crucial for the economy of Alaska as it is the only terrestrial link between mainland Alaska and the contiguous United States. Northern British Columbia and southwestern Yukon also greatly benefit from this h...
Poster
Full-text available
Vulnerability is commonly defined as the combination of exposure, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity of a system to one or more specified hazards (IPCC 2007). Knowing that climate change enhances the range and occurrence of many arctic geohazards affecting permafrost, we conducted an assessment of vulnerability to climate change for Arctic fox dens...
Presentation
Climate change impacts wildlife species both directly through exposure to changing temperatures and indirectly through habitat changes. Indeed, warming and other changes in the climate system increase the risk of severe alterations to essential habitats, especially in the Arctic. One species potentially affected by these changes is the Arctic fox (...
Article
Continuous paleoenvironmental records covering the period prior to the Last Glacial Maximum in northeastern Beringia are sparse. This study presents a multi-proxy analysis of a 35-m-high yedoma exposure located on the right bank of the Itkillik River in Alaska. The exposure accumulated over 39 thousand years (kyr) during the Middle Wisconsinan Inte...
Article
Full-text available
Permafrost is a distinct feature of the terrestrial Arctic and is vulnerable to climate warming. Permafrost degrades in different ways, including deepening of a seasonally unfrozen surface and localized but rapid development of deep thaw features. Pleistocene ice-rich permafrost with syngenetic ice-wedges, termed Yedoma deposits, are widespread in...
Article
Full-text available
We present data on the distribution and thermophysical properties of snow collected sporadically over 4 decades along with recent data of ground surface temperature from Mont Jacques-Cartier (1268 m a.s.l.), the highest summit in the Appalachians of south-eastern Canada. We demonstrate that the occurrence of contemporary permafrost is necessarily a...
Article
Full-text available
Ponds and lakes are abundant in Arctic permafrost lowlands. They play an important role in Arctic wetland ecosystems by regulating carbon, water, and energy fluxes and providing freshwater habitats. However, ponds, i.e., waterbodies with surface areas smaller than 1. 0 × 104 m2, have not been inventoried on global and regional scales. The Permafros...
Article
Full-text available
The cryostratigraphy of permafrost in ultraxerous environments is poorly known. In this study, icy permafrost cores from University Valley (McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica) were analysed for sediment properties, ground-ice content, types and distribution of cryostructures, and presence of unconformities. No active layer exists in the valley, but th...
Article
Full-text available
Water tracks play a major role in the headwater basin hydrology of permafrost landscapes in Alaska and Antarctica, but less is known about these features in the High Arctic. We examined the physical and hydrological properties of water tracks on Ward Hunt Island, a polar desert site in the Canadian High Arctic, to evaluate their formation process a...
Article
Full-text available
Increase in temperature and precipitation associated with climate change may enhance the risk of destruction by geomorphological processes of nests or dens used by Arctic wildlife. We assessed nest vulnerability to mass movements and identified environmental factors associated with the persistence of nesting structures of rough-legged hawks (Buteo...
Article
Full-text available
Northern wetlands and their productive tundra vegetation are of prime importance for Arctic wildlife by providing high quality forage and breeding habitats. However, many wetlands are becoming drier as a function of climate-induced permafrost degradation. This phenomenon is notably the case in cold, ice-rich permafrost regions such as Bylot Island,...
Article
Full-text available
Repeated freeze-thaw cycles on slopes trigger sorting and solifluction mass movements, while subsequent displacement of material modifies the geomorphology of slopes as well as permafrost dynamics. This study focuses on the geomorphology and the cryostratigraphy of a polar desert stone-banked solifluction lobe with the objective to clarify the impa...
Poster
Full-text available
Les ravins de thermo-érosion sont des formes de dégradation du paysage qui, à court et moyen terme, sont une menace pour la stabilité thermique du pergélisol. À l’Île Bylot (Nunavut), nous avons voulu comprendre comment le paysage se rétablit suite à un épisode de ravinement, quel est l’héritage de ce rétablissement au sein de l’environnement périg...
Preprint
Full-text available
Ponds and lakes are abundant in Arctic permafrost lowlands. They play an important role in Arctic wetland ecosystems by regulating carbon, water, and energy fluxes and providing freshwater habitats. However, ponds, i.e. waterbodies with surface areas smaller than 1.0E+04 m2, have not been inventoried at global and regional scales. The Permafrost Re...