Permafrost scientist receives big award for studies in Nunavik, Nunavut
Michel Allard receives $100,000 Weston Family Prize for Lifetime Achievement in Northern Research
Permafrost expert Dr. Michel Allard of Université Laval has received the 2017 Weston Family Prize for Lifetime Achievement in Northern Research, an honour that comes with a $100,000 grant.
Over a period of nearly 40 years, Allard has studied permafrost and the impact of climate change in Canada’s North, notably in Salluit and in Inukjuak, among other places in Nunavik and Nunavut.
“I’ve had the privileged opportunity to work closely with the Nunavik and Nunavut communities examining the impacts of permafrost in those regions and the vulnerabilities Inuit and First Nation communities face due to global warming,” Allard said in a news release announcing the award.
His research has led to advancements in technology that have been applied to communities across the Arctic, said the release on the award, which was given to Allard Dec. 13 at the ArcticNet conference in Quebec City.
Allard, who received a Governor General’s Polar Medal in 2015, has authored and co-authored more than 130 papers in scientific journals and has written more than 50 reports related to the impact of permafrost on communities and infrastructure, the release said.
He has also mentored over 120 students and serves on advisory committees for Canada’s northern transportation and mining industries.
“By prioritizing engagement with First Nations and Inuit communities, Dr. Allard revolutionized the way research is conducted in the North. His work has led to significant advancements in scientific technology and the development of sustainable infrastructure that addresses the unique challenges of this region,” said Geordie Dalglish, the director of The W. Garfield Weston Foundation and chair of its northern committee.
The prize includes a $50,000 award to the recipient, $50,000 to support a postdoctoral fellowship of the recipient’s choice, and additional money for Inuit engagement and travel.
Now in its seventh year, the Weston Family Prize for Lifetime Achievement in Northern Research, donated by The W. Garfield Weston Foundation, honours an individual’s leadership and commitment to northern environmental research.