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Field camp in the Mealy Mountains

The Labrador Highlands Research Group of Memorial University is researching the sensitivity of tundra and treeline ecosystems to climate change in highland areas of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Our aims are to:

  • Better understand these ecosystems in relation to their local climates
  • Determine how they evolved in the past
  • Predict what will happen to them under a future, perhaps very different, climate.

We are a multidisciplinary group: students study in Biology, Geography, and Environmental Science.

Partners & Support

Principal funding for initial phase of the Labrador Highlands studies (2001-2003) came from the Northern Ecosystems Initiative (NEI) of Environment Canada, with additional support from Environment Canada – Atlantic Region and the Inland Fish and Wildlife Division, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador.

The expansion of the program in the current three-year period is being funded by major contributions from the Climate Change Impacts & Adaptation Program (CCIAP) hosted by Natural Resources Canada and a further contribution from NEI. The Wildlife Division, Department of Environment and Conservation, has provided logistical support in the form of aircraft time and the use of work and storage space at their offices at Otter Creek, Labrador. Parks Canada is a supporting partner in these studies, providing logistical support for the research and monitoring component in Gros Morne National Park. New initiative under the International Polar Year (IPY) support are beginning in 2007. Faculty salaries, offices, institutional equipment and laboratory facilities and a variety of services are provided by Memorial University. The Northern Scientific Training Program (NSTP) of Indian and Northern Affairs Canada provides grants that cover a portion of the travel and subsistence costs for undergraduate and graduate students working in Labrador. We have benefited from the advice and support of a number of agencies and community groups, including the Innu Nation in whose land claim area much of our research is taking place.