WorldWideScience

Sample records for arctic alaska r4d

  1. Tundra Rehabilitation in Alaska's Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynn, L. A.

    2012-12-01

    Oil exploration in Alaska's Arctic has been conducted for more than 40 years, resulting in over 3,640 ha of gravel fill placed for roads, pads, and airstrips to support the industry. Likewise, tundra disturbance from burying power lines and by tundra vehicle travel are also common. Rehabilitation of disturbed sites began around 2002, with well over 150 ha that has been previously treated or is currently being rehabilitated. Two primary goals of rehabilitation efforts have been 1) revegetation by indigenous species, and 2) limiting thermokarst. Early efforts were concerned that removing gravel and having exposed bare ground would lead to extensive subsidence and eolian erosion. Native grass cultivars (e.g. Poa glauca, Arctagrostis latifolia, and Festuca rubra) were seeded to create vegetation cover quickly with the expectation that these grasses would survive only temporarily. The root masses and leaf litter were also expected to trap indigenous seed to enhance natural recolonization by indigenous plants. Due to the remote location of these sites, many of which are only accessible by helicopter, most are visited only two to three times following cultivation treatments, providing a limited data pool. At many sites, the total live seeded grass cover declined about 15% over the first 5¬-6 years (from around 30% to 15% cover), while total live indigenous vascular cover increased from no or trace cover to an average of 10% cover in that time. Cover of indigenous vascular plants at sites that were not seeded with native grass cultivars averaged just less than 10% after 10 years, showing no appreciable difference between the two approaches. Final surface elevations at the sites affect local hydrology and soil moisture. Other factors that influence the success of vegetation cover are proximity to the Arctic coast (salt effects), depth of remaining gravel, and changes in characteristics of the near-surface soil. Further development of rehabilitation techniques and the

  2. The Alaska Arctic Vegetation Archive (AVA-AK)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Walker, Donald A.; Breen, Amy L.; Druckenmiller, Lisa A.; Wirth, Lisa W.; Fisher, Will; Raynolds, Martha K.; Šibík, Jozef; Walker, Marilyn D.; Hennekens, Stephan; Boggs, Keith; Boucher, Tina; Buchhorn, Marcel; Bültmann, Helga; Cooper, David J.; Daniëls, Fred J.A.; Davidson, Scott J.; Ebersole, James J.; Elmendorf, Sara C.; Epstein, Howard E.; Gould, William A.; Hollister, Robert D.; Iversen, Colleen M.; Jorgenson, M.T.; Kade, Anja; Lee, Michael T.; MacKenzie, William H.; Peet, Robert K.; Peirce, Jana L.; Schickhoff, Udo; Sloan, Victoria L.; Talbot, Stephen S.; Tweedie, Craig E.; Villarreal, Sandra; Webber, Patrick J.; Zona, Donatella

    2016-01-01

    The Alaska Arctic Vegetation Archive (AVA-AK, GIVD-ID: NA-US-014) is a free, publically available database archive of vegetation-plot data from the Arctic tundra region of northern Alaska. The archive currently contains 24 datasets with 3,026 non-overlapping plots. Of these, 74% have geolocation

  3. Northern gas : Arctic Canada and Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Constantin, D.

    2005-01-01

    This paper discusses supply challenges in relation to Northern gas availability in Arctic Canada and Alaska. A background of BP Canada Energy Company was provided. It was suggested that gas from traditional North American basins would not meet demand, and that incremental sources of supply would be needed. A map of traditional and non-tradition supply sources was presented along with details of supply and infrastructure investment requirements from 2003-2025. The roles of producers, local distribution companies, pipelines and policy makers in infrastructure development were examined. Potential resources in Alaska and the Mackenzie Delta were discussed, along with details of the Mackenzie Valley Pipeline project and exploration activities. Alaska's North Slope gas resource was reviewed. Several large projects devolving from the Alaska Gas Pipeline represent an anticipated total investment of $20 billion. Various regulatory and economic conditions necessary for the successful completion of the project include the Alaska Fiscal Contract; Alaska gas provisions in the Federal Energy Bill; details of the Canadian regulatory process; and cost reductions and market outlooks. It was concluded that the Alaska Gas Pipeline would provide thousands of jobs and provide stability of long-term gas prices as well as meeting North America's energy needs. In addition, the pipeline would provide $16 billion in Canadian government revenues and $40 billion in US government revenues. The pipeline would provide 4.5 billion cubic feet per day of clean energy, with half the carbon dioxide emissions of coal. It would also provide hundreds of billions of dollars in consumer savings. tabs, figs

  4. The Alaska Arctic Vegetation Archive (AVA-AK)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donald A. Walker; Amy L. Breen; Lisa A. Druckenmiller; Lisa W. Wirth; Will Fisher; Martha K. Raynolds; Jozef Šibík; Marilyn D. Walker; Stephan Hennekens; Keith Boggs; Tina Boucher; Marcel Buchhorn; Helga Bültmann; David J. Cooper; Fred J.A Daniëls; Scott J. Davidson; James J. Ebersole; Sara C. Elmendorf; Howard E. Epstein; William A. Gould; Robert D. Hollister; Colleen M. Iversen; M. Torre Jorgenson; Anja Kade; Michael T. Lee; William H. MacKenzie; Robert K. Peet; Jana L. Peirce; Udo Schickhoff; Victoria L. Sloan; Stephen S. Talbot; Craig E. Tweedie; Sandra Villarreal; Patrick J. Webber; Donatella Zona

    2016-01-01

    The Alaska Arctic Vegetation Archive (AVA-AK, GIVD-ID: NA-US-014) is a free, publically available database archive of vegetation-plot data from the Arctic tundra region of northern Alaska. The archive currently contains 24 datasets with 3,026 non-overlapping plots. Of these, 74% have geolocation data with 25-m or better precision. Species cover data and header data are...

  5. The Triassic upwelling system of Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yurchenko, I.; Graham, S. A.

    2017-12-01

    The Middle to Upper Triassic Shublik Formation of Arctic Alaska is a laterally and vertically heterogeneous rock unit that has been analyzed both in outcrop and in the subsurface. The Shublik Formation sediments are distinguished by a characteristic set of lithologies that include glauconitic, phosphatic, organic-rich, and cherty facies consistent with a coastal upwelling zone deposition interpretation. It is often recognized by abundance of impressions and shells of distinctive Triassic bivalves. To understand main controls on lithofacies distributions, this study reviews and refines lithologic and paleoenvironmental interpretations of the Shublik Formation, and incorporates the newly acquired detailed geochemical analyses of two complete Shublik cores. This work focuses on organic geochemistry (analyses of biomarkers and diamondoids), chemostratigraphy (hand-held XRF), and iron speciation analysis to reconstruct paleoproductivity and redox conditions. Based on the available evidence, during Shublik deposition, an upwelling-influenced open shelf resulted in high nutrient supply that stimulated algal blooms leading to high net organic productivity, reduced water transparency, oxygen deficiency, and water column stratification. Evidence of such eutrophic conditions is indicated by the lack of photic benthic organisms, bioturbation and trace fossils, and dominance of the monospecific light-independent epibenthic bivalves. The flat, subcircular, thin shells of these carbonate-secreting organisms allowed them to adapt to dysoxic conditions, and float on soft, soupy, muddy substrate. The distinctive clay- and organic-rich facies with abundant bivalves occurred on the mid to outer stable broad shelf, and were deposited when organic productivity at times overlapped with periods of increased siliciclastic input controlled by sea level and changes in local sediment dispersal systems, and therefore are more spatially and temporally localized than the widespread clay

  6. Pacific Northwest Laboratory Alaska (ARCTIC) research program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hanson, W.C.; Eberhardt, L.E.

    1980-03-01

    The current program continues studies of arctic ecosystems begun in 1959 as part of the Cape Thompson Program. Specific ecosystem aspects include studies of the ecology of arctic and red foxes, small mammel and bird population studies, lichen studies, and radiation ecology studies. (ACR)

  7. Seasonal and Intra-annual Controls on CO2 Flux in Arctic Alaska

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Oechel, Walter [San Diego State Univ., CA (United States); Kalhori, Aram [San Diego State Univ., CA (United States)

    2015-12-01

    In order to advance the understanding of the patterns and controls on the carbon budget in the Arctic region, San Diego State University has maintained eddy covariance flux towers at three sites in Arctic Alaska, starting in 1997.

  8. Pre-ABoVE: Arctic Alaska Vegetation, Geobotanical, Physiographic Data, 1993-2005

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set provides the spatial distributions of vegetation types, geobotanical characteristics, and physiographic features for the Arctic tundra region of Alaska...

  9. Shrub water use dynamics in arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, J.; Young-Robertson, J. M.; Tape, K. D.

    2016-12-01

    In the Arctic tundra, hydrologic processes influence the majority of ecosystem processes, from soil thermal dynamics to energy balance and trace gas exchange to vegetation community distributions. The tundra biome is experiencing a broad spectrum of ecosystem changes spurred by 20th century warming, including deciduous shrub expansion. Deciduous woody vegetation typically has high water use rates compared to evergreen and herbaceous species, and is projected to have a greater impact on energy balance than altered albedo from changes in snowpack. However, the impact of greater shrub cover on water balance has been overlooked. Shrubs have the potential to significantly dry the soil, accessing stored soil moisture in the organic layers, while increasing atmospheric moisture. The goal of this study is to quantify the water use dynamics (sap flux and stem water content) of three common arctic shrub species (Salix alexensis, S. pulchra, Betula nana) over two growing seasons. Stem water content was measured through a novel application of time domain reflectometry (TDR). Maximum sap flow rates varied by species: S. alexensis-600g/hr, S. pulchra-60g/hr, and B. nana-40g/hr. We found daily sap flow rates are highly correlated with atmospheric moisture demand (VPD) and not limited by soil moisture or antecedent precipitation. Stem water content varied between 20% and 60%, was correlated with soil moisture, and showed weak diurnal variation. This is one of the first studies to provide a detailed look at arctic tundra shrub water balance and explore the environmental controls on water flux. Planned future work will expand on these results for estimates of evapotranspiration over larger landscape areas.

  10. Pre-ABoVE: Arctic Vegetation Plots at Atqasuk, Alaska, 1975, 2000, and 2010

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set provides vegetation species abundance data collected in 1975 from 60 sites on the Arctic Coastal Plain near Atqasuk, Alaska, as well as environmental...

  11. Sensitivity of Coastal Environments and Wildlife to Spilled Oil: Northwest Arctic, Alaska: FISH (Fish Polygons)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set contains sensitive biological resource data for marine, estuarine, freshwater, and anadromous fish species in Northwest Arctic, Alaska. Vector polygons...

  12. Sensitivity of Coastal Environments and Wildlife to Spilled Oil: Northwest Arctic, Alaska: INVERT (Invertebrate Polygons)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set contains sensitive biological resource data for marine and estuarine invertebrate species in Northwest Arctic, Alaska. Vector polygons in this data set...

  13. Trophic pathways supporting Arctic grayling in a small stream on the Arctic Coastal Plain, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFarland, Jason J.; Wipfli, Mark S.; Whitman, Matthew S.

    2018-01-01

    Beaded streams are prominent across the Arctic Coastal Plain (ACP) of Alaska, yet prey flow and food web dynamics supporting fish inhabiting these streams are poorly understood. Arctic grayling (Thymallus arcticus) are a widely distributed upper-level consumer on the ACP and migrate into beaded streams to forage during the short 3-month open-water season. We investigated energy pathways and key prey resources that support grayling in a representative beaded stream, Crea Creek. We measured terrestrial invertebrates entering the stream from predominant riparian vegetation types, prey types supporting a range of fish size classes, and how riparian plants and fish size influenced foraging habits. We found that riparian plants influenced the quantity of terrestrial invertebrates entering Crea Creek; however, these differences were not reflected in fish diets. Prey type and size ingested varied with grayling size and season. Small grayling (15 cm FL) foraged most heavily on ninespine stickleback (Pungitius pungitius) throughout the summer, indicating that grayling can be insectivorous and piscivorous, depending on size. These findings underscore the potential importance of small streams in Arctic ecosystems as key summer foraging habitats for fish. Understanding trophic pathways supporting stream fishes in these systems will help interpret whether and how petroleum development and climate change may affect energy flow and stream productivity, terrestrial–aquatic linkages and fishes in Arctic ecosystems.

  14. Trophic pathways supporting Arctic grayling in a small stream on the Arctic Coastal Plain, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    McFarland, Jason J.; Wipfli, Mark S.; Whitman, Matthew S.

    2018-01-01

    Beaded streams are prominent across the Arctic Coastal Plain (ACP) of Alaska, yet prey flow and food web dynamics supporting fish inhabiting these streams are poorly understood. Arctic grayling (Thymallus arcticus) are a widely distributed upper-level consumer on the ACP and migrate into beaded streams to forage during the short 3-month open-water season. We investigated energy pathways and key prey resources that support grayling in a representative beaded stream, Crea Creek. We measured terrestrial invertebrates entering the stream from predominant riparian vegetation types, prey types supporting a range of fish size classes, and how riparian plants and fish size influenced foraging habits. We found that riparian plants influenced the quantity of terrestrial invertebrates entering Crea Creek; however, these differences were not reflected in fish diets. Prey type and size ingested varied with grayling size and season. Small grayling (fish (>15 cm FL) foraged most heavily on ninespine stickleback (Pungitius pungitius) throughout the summer, indicating that grayling can be insectivorous and piscivorous, depending on size. These findings underscore the potential importance of small streams in Arctic ecosystems as key summer foraging habitats for fish. Understanding trophic pathways supporting stream fishes in these systems will help interpret whether and how petroleum development and climate change may affect energy flow and stream productivity, terrestrial–aquatic linkages and fishes in Arctic ecosystems.

  15. Ice-age megafauna in Arctic Alaska: extinction, invasion, survival

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mann, Daniel H.; Groves, Pamela; Kunz, Michael L.; Reanier, Richard E.; Gaglioti, Benjamin V.

    2013-01-01

    Radical restructuring of the terrestrial, large mammal fauna living in arctic Alaska occurred between 14,000 and 10,000 years ago at the end of the last ice age. Steppe bison, horse, and woolly mammoth became extinct, moose and humans invaded, while muskox and caribou persisted. The ice age megafauna was more diverse in species and possibly contained 6× more individual animals than live in the region today. Megafaunal biomass during the last ice age may have been 30× greater than present. Horse was the dominant species in terms of number of individuals. Lions, short-faced bears, wolves, and possibly grizzly bears comprised the predator/scavenger guild. The youngest mammoth so far discovered lived ca 13,800 years ago, while horses and bison persisted on the North Slope until at least 12,500 years ago during the Younger Dryas cold interval. The first people arrived on the North Slope ca 13,500 years ago. Bone-isotope measurements and foot-loading characteristics suggest megafaunal niches were segregated along a moisture gradient, with the surviving species (muskox and caribou) utilizing the warmer and moister portions of the vegetation mosaic. As the ice age ended, the moisture gradient shifted and eliminated habitats utilized by the dryland, grazing species (bison, horse, mammoth). The proximate cause for this change was regional paludification, the spread of organic soil horizons and peat. End-Pleistocene extinctions in arctic Alaska represent local, not global extinctions since the megafaunal species lost there persisted to later times elsewhere. Hunting seems unlikely as the cause of these extinctions, but it cannot be ruled out as the final blow to megafaunal populations that were already functionally extinct by the time humans arrived in the region.

  16. 50 CFR Appendix I to Part 37 - Legal Description of the Coastal Plain, Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ..., Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska I Appendix I to Part 37 Wildlife and Fisheries UNITED STATES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR (CONTINUED) THE NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE SYSTEM GEOLOGICAL AND GEOPHYSICAL EXPLORATION OF THE COASTAL PLAIN, ARCTIC NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE, ALASKA Pt. 37...

  17. Historical and contemporary imagery to assess ecosystem change on the Arctic coastal plain of northern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tape, Ken D.; Pearce, John M.; Walworth, Dennis; Meixell, Brandt W.; Fondell, Tom F.; Gustine, David D.; Flint, Paul L.; Hupp, Jerry W.; Schmutz, Joel A.; Ward, David H.

    2014-01-01

    The Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska is a complex landscape of lakes, streams, and wetlands scattered across low-relief tundra that is underlain by permafrost. This region of the Arctic has experienced a warming trend over the past three decades leading to thawing of on-shore permafrost and the disappearance of sea ice at unprecedented rates. The U.S. Geological Survey’s (USGS) Changing Arctic Ecosystems (CAE) research initiative was developed to investigate and forecast these rapid changes in the physical environment of the Arctic, and the associated changes to wildlife populations, in order to inform key management decisions by the U.S. Department of the Interior and other agencies. Forecasting future wildlife responses to changes in the Arctic can benefit greatly from historical records that inform what changes have already occurred. Several Arctic wildlife and plant species have already responded to climatic and physical changes to the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska. Thus, we located historical aerial imagery to improve our understanding of recent habitat changes and the associated response to such changes by wildlife populations.

  18. Projected changes in wildlife habitats in Arctic natural areas of northwest Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruce G. Marcot; M.Torre Jorgenson; James P. Lawler; Colleen M. Handel; Anthony R. DeGange

    2015-01-01

    We project the effects of transitional changes among 60 vegetation and other land cover types (Becotypes^) in northwest Alaska over the 21st century on habitats of 162 bird and 39 mammal species known or expected to occur regularly in the region. This analysis, encompassing a broad suite of arctic and boreal wildlife species, entailed building wildlifehabitat matrices...

  19. Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) Atlas: Northwest Arctic, Alaska, volume 2, maps and geographic information systems data (NODC Accession 0046028)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set comprises the Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) data for Northwest Arctic, Alaska. ESI data characterize estuarine environments and wildlife by...

  20. Allegations of Environmental Contamination and Hazards Affecting the Inupiat Community of the Arctic Slope, Alaska. Evaluation Report

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    1998-01-01

    .... The Inupiat community of the Arctic Slope, Alaska alleged that the past activities of the Department of Defense and other Federal agencies exposed the Inupiat community to environmental contamination...

  1. Sensitivity of Coastal Environments and Wildlife to Spilled Oil: Northwest Arctic, Alaska: M_MAMMAL (Marine Mammal Polygons)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set contains sensitive biological resource data for seals, whales, walruses, polar bears, and Steller sea lions in Northwest Arctic, Alaska. Vector...

  2. Sensitivity of Coastal Environments and Wildlife to Spilled Oil: Northwest Arctic, Alaska: M_MAMPT (Marine Mammal Points)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set contains sensitive biological resource data for Steller sea lions and polar bears in Northwest Arctic, Alaska. Vector points in this data set represent...

  3. Sensitivity of Coastal Environments and Wildlife to Spilled Oil: Northwest Arctic, Alaska: SOCECON (Socioeconomic Resource Points and Lines)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set contains vector points and lines representing human-use resource data for airports, marinas, and mining sites in Northwest Arctic, Alaska....

  4. Physiological and ecological effects of increasing temperature on fish production in lakes of Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carey, Michael P.; Zimmerman, Christian E.

    2014-01-01

    Lake ecosystems in the Arctic are changing rapidly due to climate warming. Lakes are sensitive integrators of climate-induced changes and prominent features across the Arctic landscape, especially in lowland permafrost regions such as the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska. Despite many studies on the implications of climate warming, how fish populations will respond to lake changes is uncertain for Arctic ecosystems. Least Cisco (Coregonus sardinella) is a bellwether for Arctic lakes as an important consumer and prey resource. To explore the consequences of climate warming, we used a bioenergetics model to simulate changes in Least Cisco production under future climate scenarios for lakes on the Arctic Coastal Plain. First, we used current temperatures to fit Least Cisco consumption to observed annual growth. We then estimated growth, holding food availability, and then feeding rate constant, for future projections of temperature. Projected warmer water temperatures resulted in reduced Least Cisco production, especially for larger size classes, when food availability was held constant. While holding feeding rate constant, production of Least Cisco increased under all future scenarios with progressively more growth in warmer temperatures. Higher variability occurred with longer projections of time mirroring the expanding uncertainty in climate predictions further into the future. In addition to direct temperature effects on Least Cisco growth, we also considered changes in lake ice phenology and prey resources for Least Cisco. A shorter period of ice cover resulted in increased production, similar to warming temperatures. Altering prey quality had a larger effect on fish production in summer than winter and increased relative growth of younger rather than older age classes of Least Cisco. Overall, we predicted increased production of Least Cisco due to climate warming in lakes of Arctic Alaska. Understanding the implications of increased production of Least Cisco to

  5. Social-Ecological Soundscapes: Examining Aircraft-Harvester-Caribou Conflict in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stinchcomb, Taylor R.

    As human development expands across the Arctic, it is crucial to carefully assess the impacts to remote natural ecosystems and to indigenous communities that rely on wild resources for nutritional and cultural wellbeing. Because indigenous communities and wildlife populations are interdependent, assessing how human activities impact traditional harvest practices can advance our understanding of the human dimensions of wildlife management. Indigenous communities across Arctic Alaska have expressed concern over the last four decades that low-flying aircraft interfere with their traditional harvest practices. For example, communities often have testified that aircraft disturb caribou (Rangifer tarandus) and thereby reduce harvest opportunities. Despite this longstanding concern, little research exists on the extent of aircraft activity in Arctic Alaska and on how aircraft affect the behavior and perceptions of harvesters. Therefore, the overarching goal of my research was to highlight the importance of aircraft-harvester conflict in Arctic Alaska and begin to address the issue using a scientific and community-driven approach. In Chapter 1, I demonstrated that conflict between aircraft and indigenous harvesters in Arctic Alaska is a widespread, understudied, and complex issue. By conducting a meta-analysis of the available literature, I quantified the deficiency of scientific knowledge about the impacts of aircraft on rural communities and traditional harvest practices in the Arctic. My results indicated that no peer-reviewed literature has addressed the conflict between low-flying aircraft and traditional harvesters in Arctic Alaska. I speculated that the scale over which aircraft, rural communities, and wildlife interact limits scientists' ability to determine causal relationships and therefore detracts from their interest in researching the human dimension of this social-ecological system. Innovative research approaches like soundscape ecology could begin to

  6. Toward a Predictive Model of Arctic Coastal Retreat in a Warming Climate, Beaufort Sea, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-09-30

    resulting from climate change. Our study is focused on the Beaufort Sea coast within the National Petroleum Reserve – Alaska (NPR-A), approximately...published in Computers in Geosciences . In this paper we introduce our model of the thermal impact of thaw lakes on the permafrost of the North Slope...F. E. Urban, and G. D. Clow, 2011, Modeling the subsurface thermal impact of Arctic thaw lakes in a warming climate. Computers & Geosciences (2011

  7. Source Apportionment of sub-Arctic Pollutants at Denali National Park, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bian, Q.; Kreidenweis, S. M.

    2014-12-01

    The "bromine (Br) explosion" in the springtime Arctic region, associated with rapid ozone depletion events, is now a well-documented phenomenon. The source of Br appears to be sea salt but its cycling between the aerosol and gas phase is not well understood. In this study, we observed the occurrence of elevated aerosol-phase Br concentrations in springtime IMPROVE network PM2.5 measurements in the sub-Arctic Denali National Park (DNP; site elevation, 658 MASL). Episodic elevated aerosol Br levels were observed from February to May in all years in the data record, 1988 to 2013. Anti-correlation (R=-0.54) between O3 and Br for high-concentration Br samples (Br>2 ng/m3, 130 out of 730 springtime samples) implied its possible link to ozone depletion events in the Arctic region. To further identify the sources influencing aerosol observed at DNP, source apportionment using the EPA Positive Matrix Factorization 5.0 model was applied to the entire PM2.5 speciated data from the DNP site. Six sources were derived, including secondary sulfate, a factor containing both Br and NO3-, dust, sea salt, smelting, and a mixture of wildfire and other combustion sources. Concentration weighted trajectory analysis, which was employed to identify the possible source origins, suggested that the Br/NO3- factor originated from northern Alaska in the springtime, and the secondary sulfate was largely associated with Asian sources that included Russian Norilsk Nickel. Sea salt, also originating from northern and northwestern coastal Alaska, was highest in the wintertime when high surface winds and low surface temperatures are expected. Dust, generally enhanced in April, May and June, was traced back to Eurasian sources. The smelting factor had a decreasing trend from 1988 to 2013, consistent with other studies of aerosol metal concentrations in the Arctic. The combustion factor was usually highest in the summertime, originated from near the surface in central Alaska, and was linked to

  8. Ecological niche modeling of rabies in the changing Arctic of Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huettmann, Falk; Magnuson, Emily Elizabeth; Hueffer, Karsten

    2017-03-20

    Rabies is a disease of global significance including in the circumpolar Arctic. In Alaska enzootic rabies persist in northern and western coastal areas. Only sporadic cases have occurred in areas outside of the regions considered enzootic for the virus, such as the interior of the state and urbanized regions. Here we examine the distribution of diagnosed rabies cases in Alaska, explicit in space and time. We use a geographic information system (GIS), 20 environmental data layers and provide a quantitative non-parsimonious estimate of the predicted ecological niche, based on data mining, machine learning and open access data. We identify ecological correlates and possible drivers that determine the ecological niche of rabies virus in Alaska. More specifically, our models show that rabies cases are closely associated with human infrastructure, and reveal an ecological niche in remote northern wilderness areas. Furthermore a model utilizing climate modeling suggests a reduction of the current ecological niche for detection of rabies virus in Alaska, a state that is disproportionately affected by a changing climate. Our results may help to better inform public health decisions in the future and guide further studies on individual drivers of rabies distribution in the Arctic.

  9. Polar bear maternal den habitat in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Durner, George M.; Amstrup, Steven C.; Ambrosius, Ken J.

    2006-01-01

    Polar bears (Ursus maritimus) give birth during mid-winter in dens of ice and snow. Denning polar bears subjected to human disturbances may abandon dens before their altricial young can survive the rigors of the Arctic winter. Because the Arctic coastal plain of Alaska is an area of high petroleum potential and contains existing and planned oil field developments, the distribution of polar bear dens on the plain is of interest to land managers. Therefore, as part of a study of denning habitats along the entire Arctic coast of Alaska, we examined high-resolution aerial photographs (n = 1655) of the 7994 km2 coastal plain included in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) and mapped 3621 km of bank habitat suitable for denning by polar bears. Such habitats were distributed uniformly and comprised 0.29% (23.2 km2) of the coastal plain between the Canning River and the Canadian border. Ground-truth sampling suggested that we had correctly identified 91.5% of bank denning habitats on the ANWR coastal plain. Knowledge of the distribution of these habitats will help facilitate informed management of human activities and minimize disruption of polar bears in maternal dens.

  10. Landsat time series analysis documents beaver migration into permafrost landscapes of arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, B. M.; Tape, K. D.; Nitze, I.; Arp, C. D.; Grosse, G.; Zimmerman, C. E.

    2017-12-01

    Landscape-scale impacts of climate change in the Arctic include increases in growing season length, shrubby vegetation, winter river discharge, snowfall, summer and winter water temperatures, and decreases in river and lake ice thickness. Combined, these changes may have created conditions that are suitable for beaver colonization of low Arctic tundra regions. We developed a semi-automated workflow that analyzes Landsat imagery time series to determine the extent to which beavers may have colonized permafrost landscapes in arctic Alaska since 1999. We tested this approach on the Lower Noatak, Wulik, and Kivalina river watersheds in northwest Alaska and identified 83 locations representing potential beaver activity. Seventy locations indicated wetting trends and 13 indicated drying trends. Verification of each site using high-resolution satellite imagery showed that 80 % of the wetting locations represented beaver activity (damming and pond formation), 11 % were unrelated to beavers, and 9 % could not readily be distinguished as being beaver related or not. For the drying locations, 31 % represented beaver activity (pond drying due to dam abandonment), 62 % were unrelated to beavers, and 7 % were undetermined. Comparison of the beaver activity database with historic aerial photography from ca. 1950 and ca. 1980 indicates that beavers have recently colonized or recolonized riparian corridors in northwest Alaska. Remote sensing time series observations associated with the migration of beavers in permafrost landscapes in arctic Alaska include thermokarst lake expansion and drainage, thaw slump initiation, ice wedge degradation, thermokarst shore fen development, and possibly development of lake and river taliks. Additionally, beaver colonization in the Arctic may alter channel courses, thermal regimes, hyporheic flow, riparian vegetation, and winter ice regimes that could impact ecosystem structure and function in this region. In particular, the combination of beaver

  11. Pre-ABoVE: Arctic Vegetation Plots in NPS Arctic Network Parks, Alaska, 2002-2008

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This dataset provides environmental, soil, and vegetation data collected at selected locations in the parks and preserves of the National Park Service (NPS) Arctic...

  12. Engaging Local Communities in Arctic Observing Networks: A Collaborative Shoreline Change Risk WebGIS for Alaska's Arctic Slope Region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brady, M.

    2017-12-01

    This study engaged local community stakeholders in Alaska's Arctic Slope Region to develop a web-based shoreline change risk geographic information system (WebGIS) in collaboration with the North Slope Borough and its residents. The value of the effort includes rich spatial documentation of local risks across the vast, remote, and rapidly changing shoreline, and identification of local manager information needs to direct WebGIS development. The study advances our understanding of shoreline change problems from the perspective of local Arctic communities beyond municipal impacts while building decision support. Over fifty local residents in three communities with collective coastal knowledge that extends across the National Petroleum Reserve - Alaska and Arctic National Wildlife Refuge shared their perspectives on hard copy maps. Sixteen managers provided usability perceptions of a beta WebGIS with shoreline change susceptibility information summarized at relevant asset locations such as subsistence camps. The hard copy maps with 300 "problem places" were digitized for analysis, which revealed problems across the coastline, especially challenges to boating for subsistence hunting such as shoaling cutting off access and creating hazards. The usability workshop revealed specific information needs including the need to monitor impacts at decommissioned national defense radar sites repurposed by locals to centralize oil and gas activity. These results were analyzed using an Instructional Systems Design (ISD) framework consisting of front-end and formative WebGIS evaluation phases. The front-end evaluation is the local input on hard copy maps, which provided local verification of coastal risks. The formative evaluation is the usability workshop with managers, which informed WebGIS development while promoting user buy-in. In terms of product and process, the local knowledge and information needs collected are significant because they establish local engagement with the

  13. Regional shoreline change and coastal erosion hazards in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibbs, Ann E.; Richmond, Bruce M.; Erikson, Li H.; Harden, E. Lynne; Wallendorf, Louise

    2011-01-01

    Historical shoreline positions along the mainland Beaufort Sea coast of Alaska were digitized and analyzed to determine the long-term rate of change. Average shoreline change rates and ranges from 1947 to the mid-2000s were determined every 50 meters between Barrow and Demarcation Point, at the U.S.-Canadian border. Results show that shoreline change rates are highly variable along the coast, with an average regional shoreline change rate of-2.0 m/yr and localized rates of up to -19 m/yr. The highest erosion rates were observed at headlands, points, and associated with breached thermokarst lakes. Areas of accretion were limited, and generally associated with spit extension and minor beach accretion. In general, erosion rates increase from east to west, with overall higher rates east of Harrison Bay.

  14. The lab and the land: overcoming the Arctic in Cold War Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farish, Matthew

    2013-03-01

    The militarization of Alaska during and after World War II created an extraordinary set of new facilities. But it also reshaped the imaginative role of Alaska as a hostile environment, where an antagonistic form of nature could be defeated with the appropriate combination of technology and training. One of the crucial sites for this reformulation was the Arctic Aeromedical Laboratory, based at Ladd Air Force Base in Fairbanks. In the first two decades of the Cold War, its employees conducted numerous experiments on acclimatization and survival. The laboratory is now best known for an infamous set of tests involving the application of radioactive tracers to indigenous Alaskans--experiments publicized by post-Cold War panels established to evaluate the tragic history of atomic-era human subject research. But little else has been written about the laboratory's relationship with the populations and landscapes that it targeted for study. This essay presents the laboratory as critical to Alaska's history and the history of the Cold War sciences. A consideration of the laboratory's various projects also reveals a consistent fascination with race. Alaskan Natives were enrolled in experiments because their bodies were understood to hold clues to the mysteries of northern nature. A scientific solution would aid American military campaigns not only in Alaska, but in cold climates everywhere.

  15. Wave climate and trends along the eastern Chukchi Arctic Alaska coast

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erikson, L.H.; Storlazzi, C.D.; Jensen, R.E.

    2011-01-01

    Due in large part to the difficulty of obtaining measurements in the Arctic, little is known about the wave climate along the coast of Arctic Alaska. In this study, numerical model simulations encompassing 40 years of wave hind-casts were used to assess mean and extreme wave conditions. Results indicate that the wave climate was strongly modulated by large-scale atmospheric circulation patterns and that mean and extreme wave heights and periods exhibited increasing trends in both the sea and swell frequency bands over the time-period studied (1954-2004). Model simulations also indicate that the upward trend was not due to a decrease in the minimum icepack extent. ?? 2011 ASCE.

  16. Assimilation of old carbon by stream food webs in arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Donnell, J. A.; Carey, M.; Xu, X.; Koch, J. C.; Walker, J. C.; Zimmerman, C. E.

    2017-12-01

    Permafrost thaw in arctic and sub-arctic region is mobilizing old carbon (C) from perennially frozen soils, driving the release of old C to the atmosphere and to aquatic ecosystems. Much research has focused on the transport and lability of old dissolved organic C (DOC) as a possible feedback to the climate system following thaw. However, little is known about the role of old C as a source to aquatic food webs in watersheds underlain by thawing permafrost. To quantify the contributions of old C to Arctic stream food-webs, we measured the radiocarbon (Δ14C) and stable isotope (δ13C, δ15N) contents of periphyton, macroinvertebrates, and resident fish species (Arctic Grayling (Thymallus arcticus) and Dolly Varden (Salvelinus malma)). We also characterized the isotopic composition of possible C sources, including DOC, dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), and soil organic matter. Samples were collected across 10 streams in Arctic Alaska, draining watersheds underlain by varying parent material and ground-ice content, from ice-poor bedrock to ice-rich loess (i.e. Yedoma). Fraction modern (FM) values for Arctic Grayling and Dolly Varden ranged from 0.6720 to 1.0101 (3195 years BP to modern) across all streams, and closely tracked spatial variation in Δ14C content of periphyton. Parent material and ground-ice content appear to govern the age and form of dissolved C sources to stream biota. For instance, in watersheds underlain by ice-poor bedrock, old DIC (delivery of aged C to surface waters. Given the large stores Pleistocene-aged organic C in Yedoma deposits, we hypothesize that older C may become a more important contribution to stream biota under warmer conditions that promote thaw.

  17. A comprehensive climatology of Arctic aerosol properties on the North Slope of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Creamean, Jessie; de Boer, Gijs; Shupe, Matthew; McComiskey, Allison

    2016-04-01

    Evaluating aerosol properties has implications for the formation of Arctic clouds, resulting in impacts on cloud lifetime, precipitation processes, and radiative forcing. There are many remaining uncertainties and large discrepancies regarding modeled and observed Arctic aerosol properties, illustrating the need for more detailed observations to improve simulations of Arctic aerosol and more generally, projections of the components of the aerosol-driven processes that impact sea ice loss/gain. In particular, the sources and climatic effects of Arctic aerosol particles are severely understudied. Here, we present a comprehensive, long-term record of aerosol observations from the North Slope of Alaska baseline site at Barrow. These measurements include sub- and supermicron (up to 10 μm) total mass and number concentrations, sub- and supermicron soluble inorganic and organic ion concentrations, submicron metal concentrations, submicron particle size distributions, and sub- and supermicron absorption and scattering properties. Aerosol extinction and number concentration measurements extend back to 1976, while the remaining measurements were implemented since. Corroboration between the chemical, physical, and optical property measurements is evident during periods of overlapping observations, demonstrating the reliability of the measurements. During the Arctic Haze in the winter/spring, high concentrations of long-range transported submicron sea salt, mineral dust, industrial metals, pollution (non-sea salt sulfate, nitrate, ammonium), and biomass burning species are observed concurrent with higher concentrations of particles with sizes that span the submicron range, enhanced absorption and scattering coefficients, and largest Ångström exponents. The summer is characterized by high concentrations of small biogenic aerosols (sea salt representing the dominant aerosol type supporting the highest single scattering albedos. This complete set of aerosol properties can be

  18. Identifying the main drivers of soil carbon response to climate change in arctic and boreal Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Genet, H.; McGuire, A. D.; He, Y.; Johnson, K.; Wylie, B. K.; Pastick, N. J.; Zhuang, Q.; Zhu, Z.

    2015-12-01

    Boreal and arctic regions represent the largest reservoir of carbon among terrestrial biomes. Most of this carbon is stored deep in the soil in permafrost where frozen organic matter is protected from decomposition. The vulnerability of soil carbon stocks to a changing climate in high latitudes depends on a number of physical and ecological processes. The importance of these processes in controlling the dynamics of soil carbon stocks vary across regions because of variability in vegetation composition, drainage condition, and permafrost characteristics. To better understand the main drivers of the vulnerability of soil carbon stocks to climate change in Alaska, we ran a process-based ecosystem model, the Terrestrial Ecosystem Model. This model explicitly simulates interactions between the carbon cycle and permafrost dynamics and was coupled with a disturbance model and a model of biogenic methane dynamics to assess historical and projected soil carbon dynamics in Alaska, from 1950 to 2100. The uncertainties related to climate, fire regime and atmospheric CO2projections on soil carbon dynamics were quantified by running simulations using climate projections from 2 global circulation models, 3 fossil fuel emission scenarios and 3 alternative fire management scenarios. During the historical period [1950-2009], soil carbon stocks increased by 4.7 TgC/yr in Alaska. Soil carbon stocks decreased in boreal Alaska due to substantial fire activity in the early 2000's. This loss was offset by carbon accumulation in the arctic. Changes in soil carbon stocks from 2010 to 2099 ranged from 8.9 to 25.6 TgC/yr, depending on the climate projections. Soil carbon accumulation was slower in lowlands than in uplands and slower in the boreal than in the arctic regions because of the negative effect of fire activity on soil carbon stocks. Tundra ecosystems were more vulnerable to carbon loss from fire than forest ecosystems because of a lower productivity. As a result, the increase in

  19. Spatial and Temporal Variation in Methane Concentrations, Fluxes, and Sources in Lakes in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Townsend-Small, Amy; Škerström, Frida; Arp, Christopher D.; Hinkel, Kenneth M.

    2017-11-01

    Climate warming may lead to a positive feedback of increased emissions of CH4 from sediments beneath Arctic lakes, but the contribution of these lakes to the global CH4 budget is poorly quantified. Here we present results of a study of CH4 concentrations and sources from a series of 50 lakes in Arctic Alaska across an 80,000 km2 spatial gradient and a 2 year time period. We measured dissolved CH4 concentrations and stable isotopes of CH4 in lakes in the North Slope of Alaska in August 2014 and 2015 and April 2015 (under ice). Stable isotopes indicated that biogenic CH4 dominated versus thermogenic sources, with both acetate fermentation and carbonate reduction sources. Dissolved CH4 was about 100 times higher under the ice than during the summer, indicating that the spring ice off period is a large source of atmospheric CH4. Open-water dissolved CH4 concentrations had a negative relationship with latitude in both years of our study, although CH4 fluxes were consistent among a subset of lakes measured along a 150 km north to south transect in both years (14 lakes in 2014 and 12 in 2015). Dissolved CH4 concentrations and fluxes were significantly higher in August 2015 versus August 2014, concurrent with a 3°C higher mean water temperature in 2015 versus 2014. Much longer-term monitoring is needed, however, to conclude that CH4 emissions from Arctic lakes mirror observed warming trends. This study provides valuable baseline data and can inform methods for future studies investigating carbon cycle-climate change feedbacks in Alaskan Arctic lakes.

  20. Inventory of montane-nesting birds in the Arctic Network of National Parks, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tibbitts, T.L.; Ruthrauff, D.R.; Gill, R.E.; Handel, C.M.

    2006-01-01

    The Alaska Science Center of the U.S. Geological Survey conducted an inventory of birds in montane areas of the four northern parks in the Arctic Network of National Parks, Alaska. This effort represents the first comprehensive assessment of breeding range and habitat associations for the majority of avian species in the Arctic Network. Ultimately, these data provide a framework upon which to design future monitoring programs.A stratified random sampling design was used to select sample plots (n = 73 plots) that were allocated in proportion to the availability of ecological subsections. Point counts (n = 1,652) were conducted to quantify abundance, distribution, and habitat associations of birds. Field work occurred over three years (2001 to 2003) during two-week-long sessions in late May through early June that coincided with peak courtship activity of breeding birds.Totals of 53 species were recorded in Cape Krusenstern National Monument, 91 in Noatak National Preserve, 57 in Kobuk Valley National Park, and 96 in Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve. Substantial proportions of species in individual parks are considered species of conservation concern (18 to 26%) or species of stewardship responsibility of the land managers in the region (8 to 18%). The most commonly detected passerines on point counts included Redpoll spp. (Carduelis flammea and C. hornemanni), Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis), and American Tree Sparrow (Spizella arborea). The most numerous shorebirds were American Golden-Plover (Pluvialis dominica), Wilson’s Snipe (Gallinago delicata), and Whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus). Most species were detected at low rates, reflecting the low breeding densities (and/or low detectabilities) of birds in the montane Arctic. Suites of species were associated with particular ranges of elevation and showed strong associations with particular habitat types.

  1. Nitrogen kinetics in aquatic plants in arctic Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McRoy, C.P.; Alexander, V.

    1975-01-01

    The kinetics of nitrogen in terms of ammonia uptake was measured for Carex aquatilis in arctic tundra ponds using 15 N tracer techniques. Nitrogen content of the leaves and primary productivity were measured throughout a growing season. The maximum uptake velocity for ammonia was 2.75 x 10 -2 % N/g dry weight per h with a Ksub(t) of 8.4-12.5 μgatoms/l. A second estimate of nitrogen uptake was made from the increase in nitrogen content throughout the season and from this a rate of 1.85 x 10 -2 % N/g dry weight per day was obtained for Carex aquatilis and 3.6 x 10 -2 % N/g dry weight per day for Arctophylla fulva. The total nitrogen concentration in the leaves was closely related to productivity, possible providing a new approach to productivity measurements for emergent vascular plants. Emergent vascular plants absorb ammonia across and translocate it to all portions of the plant. The ecological significance of this is considerable, since in many waters inorganic nitrogen content of sediment is much higher than that of the water surrounding the leaves and stems, and can provide a source of nitrogen

  2. Carbon dioxide sources from Alaska driven by increasing early winter respiration from Arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Commane, Róisín; Lindaas, Jakob; Benmergui, Joshua; Luus, Kristina A.; Chang, Rachel Y.-W.; Daube, Bruce C.; Euskirchen, Eugénie S.; Henderson, John M.; Karion, Anna; Miller, John B.; Miller, Scot M.; Parazoo, Nicholas C.; Randerson, James T.; Sweeney, Colm; Tans, Pieter; Thoning, Kirk; Veraverbeke, Sander; Miller, Charles E.; Wofsy, Steven C.

    2017-05-01

    High-latitude ecosystems have the capacity to release large amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere in response to increasing temperatures, representing a potentially significant positive feedback within the climate system. Here, we combine aircraft and tower observations of atmospheric CO2 with remote sensing data and meteorological products to derive temporally and spatially resolved year-round CO2 fluxes across Alaska during 2012-2014. We find that tundra ecosystems were a net source of CO2 to the atmosphere annually, with especially high rates of respiration during early winter (October through December). Long-term records at Barrow, AK, suggest that CO2 emission rates from North Slope tundra have increased during the October through December period by 73% ± 11% since 1975, and are correlated with rising summer temperatures. Together, these results imply increasing early winter respiration and net annual emission of CO2 in Alaska, in response to climate warming. Our results provide evidence that the decadal-scale increase in the amplitude of the CO2 seasonal cycle may be linked with increasing biogenic emissions in the Arctic, following the growing season. Early winter respiration was not well simulated by the Earth System Models used to forecast future carbon fluxes in recent climate assessments. Therefore, these assessments may underestimate the carbon release from Arctic soils in response to a warming climate.

  3. Inundation, sedimentation, and subsidence creates goose habitat along the Arctic coast of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tape, Ken D.; Flint, Paul L.; Meixell, Brandt W.; Gaglioti, Benjamin V.

    2013-01-01

    The Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska is characterized by thermokarst lakes and drained lake basins, and the rate of coastal erosion has increased during the last half-century. Portions of the coast are sea level for kilometers inland, and are underlain by ice-rich permafrost. Increased storm surges or terrestrial subsidence would therefore expand the area subject to marine inundation. Since 1976, the distribution of molting Black Brant (Branta bernicla nigricans) on the Arctic Coastal Plain has shifted from inland freshwater lakes to coastal marshes, such as those occupying the Smith River and Garry Creek estuaries. We hypothesized that the movement of geese from inland lakes was caused by an expansion of high quality goose forage in coastal areas. We examined the recent history of vegetation and geomorphological changes in coastal goose habitat by combining analysis of time series imagery between 1948 and 2010 with soil stratigraphy dated using bomb-curve radiocarbon. Time series of vertical imagery and in situ verification showed permafrost thaw and subsidence of polygonal tundra. Soil stratigraphy and dating within coastal estuaries showed that non-saline vegetation communities were buried by multiple sedimentation episodes between 1948 and 1995, accompanying a shift toward salt-tolerant vegetation. This sedimentation allowed high quality goose forage plants to expand, thus facilitating the shift in goose distribution. Declining sea ice and the increasing rate of terrestrial inundation, sedimentation, and subsidence in coastal estuaries of Alaska may portend a 'tipping point' whereby inland areas would be transformed into salt marshes.

  4. Carbon dioxide sources from Alaska driven by increasing early winter respiration from Arctic tundra.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Commane, Róisín; Lindaas, Jakob; Benmergui, Joshua; Luus, Kristina A; Chang, Rachel Y-W; Daube, Bruce C; Euskirchen, Eugénie S; Henderson, John M; Karion, Anna; Miller, John B; Miller, Scot M; Parazoo, Nicholas C; Randerson, James T; Sweeney, Colm; Tans, Pieter; Thoning, Kirk; Veraverbeke, Sander; Miller, Charles E; Wofsy, Steven C

    2017-05-23

    High-latitude ecosystems have the capacity to release large amounts of carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) to the atmosphere in response to increasing temperatures, representing a potentially significant positive feedback within the climate system. Here, we combine aircraft and tower observations of atmospheric CO 2 with remote sensing data and meteorological products to derive temporally and spatially resolved year-round CO 2 fluxes across Alaska during 2012-2014. We find that tundra ecosystems were a net source of CO 2 to the atmosphere annually, with especially high rates of respiration during early winter (October through December). Long-term records at Barrow, AK, suggest that CO 2 emission rates from North Slope tundra have increased during the October through December period by 73% ± 11% since 1975, and are correlated with rising summer temperatures. Together, these results imply increasing early winter respiration and net annual emission of CO 2 in Alaska, in response to climate warming. Our results provide evidence that the decadal-scale increase in the amplitude of the CO 2 seasonal cycle may be linked with increasing biogenic emissions in the Arctic, following the growing season. Early winter respiration was not well simulated by the Earth System Models used to forecast future carbon fluxes in recent climate assessments. Therefore, these assessments may underestimate the carbon release from Arctic soils in response to a warming climate.

  5. THE HYDRAULIC CHARACTERISTICS AND GEOCHEMISTRY OF HYPORHEIC AND PARAFLUVIAL ZONES IN ARCTIC TUNDRA STREAMS, NORTH SLOPE, ALASKA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sodium bromide and Rhodamine WT were used as conservative tracers to examine the hydrologic characteristics of seven tundra streams in Arctic Alaska, during the summers of 1994-1996. Continuous tracer additions were conducted in seven rivers ranging from 1st to 5th order with sam...

  6. Environmental Limits of Tall Shrubs in Alaska's Arctic National Parks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swanson, David K

    2015-01-01

    We sampled shrub canopy volume (height times area) and environmental factors (soil wetness, soil depth of thaw, soil pH, mean July air temperature, and typical date of spring snow loss) on 471 plots across five National Park Service units in northern Alaska. Our goal was to determine the environments where tall shrubs thrive and use this information to predict the location of future shrub expansion. The study area covers over 80,000 km2 and has mostly tundra vegetation. Large canopy volumes were uncommon, with volumes over 0.5 m3/m2 present on just 8% of plots. Shrub canopy volumes were highest where mean July temperatures were above 10.5°C and on weakly acid to neutral soils (pH of 6 to 7) with deep summer thaw (>80 cm) and good drainage. On many sites, flooding helped maintain favorable soil conditions for shrub growth. Canopy volumes were highest where the typical snow loss date was near 20 May; these represent sites that are neither strongly wind-scoured in the winter nor late to melt from deep snowdrifts. Individual species varied widely in the canopy volumes they attained and their response to the environmental factors. Betula sp. shrubs were the most common and quite tolerant of soil acidity, cold July temperatures, and shallow thaw depths, but they did not form high-volume canopies under these conditions. Alnus viridis formed the largest canopies and was tolerant of soil acidity down to about pH 5, but required more summer warmth (over 12°C) than the other species. The Salix species varied widely from S. pulchra, tolerant of wet and moderately acid soils, to S. alaxensis, requiring well-drained soils with near neutral pH. Nearly half of the land area in ARCN has mean July temperatures of 10.5 to 12.5°C, where 2°C of warming would bring temperatures into the range needed for all of the potential tall shrub species to form large canopies. However, limitations in the other environmental factors would probably prevent the formation of large shrub canopies

  7. Predicting breeding shorebird distributions on the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saalfeld, Sarah T.; Lanctot, Richard B.; Brown, Stephen C.; Saalfeld, David T.; Johnson, James A.; Andres, Brad A.; Bart, Jonathan R.

    2013-01-01

    The Arctic Coastal Plain (ACP) of Alaska is an important region for millions of migrating and nesting shorebirds. However, this region is threatened by climate change and increased human development (e.g., oil and gas production) that have the potential to greatly impact shorebird populations and breeding habitat in the near future. Because historic data on shorebird distributions in the ACP are very coarse and incomplete, we sought to develop detailed, contemporary distribution maps so that the potential impacts of climate-mediated changes and development could be ascertained. To do this, we developed and mapped habitat suitability indices for eight species of shorebirds (Black-bellied Plover [Pluvialis squatarola], American Golden-Plover [Pluvialis dominica], Semipalmated Sandpiper [Calidris pusilla], Pectoral Sandpiper [Calidris melanotos], Dunlin [Calidris alpina], Long-billed Dowitcher [Limnodromus scolopaceus], Red-necked Phalarope [Phalaropus lobatus], and Red Phalarope [Phalaropus fulicarius]) that commonly breed within the ACP of Alaska. These habitat suitability models were based on 767 plots surveyed during nine years between 1998 and 2008 (surveys were not conducted in 2003 and 2005), using single-visit rapid area searches during territory establishment and incubation (8 June, 1 July). Species specific habitat suitability indices were developed and mapped using presence-only modeling techniques (partitioned Mahalanobis distance) and landscape environmental variables. For most species, habitat suitability was greater at lower elevations (i.e., near the coast and river deltas) and lower within upland habitats. Accuracy of models was high for all species, ranging from 65 -98%. Our models predicted that the largest fraction of suitable habitat for the majority of species occurred within the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska, with highly suitable habitat also occurring within coastal areas of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge west to Prudhoe Bay.

  8. Improving the Characterization of Arctic Coastline Ecosystem Change near Utqiagvik, Alaska Utilizing Multiyear Terrestrial Laser Scanning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escarzaga, S. M.; Cody, R. P.; Vargas, S. A., Jr.; Fuson, T.; Hodge, B. E.; Tweedie, C. E.

    2017-12-01

    The Arctic Ocean comprises the largest coastline on Earth and is undergoing environmental change on a level disproportionate to those in lower-latitudes. In the US Arctic, coastal erosion rates along the North Slope of Alaska show that they are among highest in the nation at an average rate of 1.4 meters per year. Despite their importance to biogeochemical cycling, Native village infrastructure and providing pristine species habitat, Arctic coastlines and near shore environments are relatively understudied due to logistical challenges of conducting fieldwork in these locations. This study expands on past efforts which showed dGPS foot surveys work well at describing planar erosion on less complex permafrost bluff types like those seen on the higher-energy coasts east of Utqiagvik, Alaska along the Beaufort Sea where the main mechanism of erosion happens by block failure caused by wave action. However, coastal bluffs along the Chukchi Sea to the west are more complex and variable in terms of form and mechanisms of erosion. Here, where wide beaches tend to buffer wave action, thermal erosion and permafrost slumping produce slower erosion rates. Terrestrial Laser Scanning (TLS) has been applied across a multitude of terrain types, including coastlines spanning various ecosystems. Additionally, this approach allows 3D modeling of fine scale geomorphological features which can facilitate modeling of erosion rates in these areas. This study utilizes a six year time series of TLS on a section of coastal permafrost bluff along the Chukchi Sea south of Utqiagvik. The aim of the work presented is to better understand spatio-temporal trends of coastal bluff face erosion, bluff top subsidence and how these landscape microtopographic changes are coupled to ecosystem changes and land cover types. Preliminary analysis suggests a high rate of stability of the bluff face over the TLS record with most of the detectable permafrost subsidence happening closer to the coastal bluff edge.

  9. Aeolian stratigraphy describes ice-age paleoenvironments in unglaciated Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Mann, Daniel H.; Groves, Pamela; Kunz, Michael L.; Farquharson, Louise M.; Reanier, Richard E.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Wooller, Matthew J.

    2018-02-01

    Terrestrial paleoenvironmental records with high dating resolution extending into the last ice age are rare from the western Arctic. Such records can test the synchronicity and extent of ice-age climatic events and define how Arctic landscapes respond to rapid climate changes. Here we describe the stratigraphy and sedimentology of a yedoma deposit in Arctic Alaska (the Carter Section) dating to between 37,000 and 9000 calibrated radiocarbon years BP (37-9 ka) and containing detailed records of loess and sand-sheet sedimentation, soil development, carbon storage, and permafrost dynamics. Alternation between sand-sheet and loess deposition provides a proxy for the extent and activity of the Ikpikpuk Sand Sea (ISS), a large dune field located immediately upwind. Warm, moist interstadial times (ca. 37, 36.3-32.5, and 15-13 ka) triggered floodplain aggradation, permafrost thaw, reduced loess deposition, increased vegetation cover, and rapid soil development accompanied by enhanced carbon storage. During the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM, ca. 28-18 ka), rapid loess deposition took place on a landscape where vegetation was sparse and non-woody. The most intense aeolian activity occurred after the LGM between ca. 18 and 15 ka when sand sheets fringing the ISS expanded over the site, possibly in response to increasingly droughty conditions as summers warmed and active layers deepened. With the exception of this lagged LGM response, the record of aeolian activity at the Carter Section correlates with other paleoenvironmental records from unglaciated Siberia and Alaska. Overall, rapid shifts in geomorphology, soils, vegetation, and permafrost portray an ice-age landscape where, in contrast to the Holocene, environmental change was chronic and dominated by aeolian processes.

  10. Possible Cretaceous Arctic terrestrial ecosystem dynamics based on a rich dinosaur record from Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fiorillo, A. R.; McCarthy, P. J.; Flaig, P. P.

    2010-12-01

    The widespread occurrence of large-bodied herbivores, specifically hadrosaurian and ceratopsian dinosaurs, in the Cretaceous of Alaska presents a proxy for understanding polar terrestrial ecosystem biological productivity in a warm Arctic world. These dinosaurs lived in Alaska at time when this region was at or near current latitudes. Thus these dinosaurs present a paradox. The warmer Cretaceous high-latitude climate, likely related to higher levels of CO2, may have increased plant productivity but the polar light regime fluctuations must have limited the available food during the winter months. The most detailed sedimentological data available regarding the paleoenvironments supporting these dinosaurs are from the Prince Creek Formation of northern Alaska and to a lesser extent the Cantwell Formation of the Alaska Range. The sediments of the Late Cretaceous Prince Creek Formation represent a continental succession deposited on a high-latitude, low-gradient, alluvial/coastal plain. The Prince Creek Formation records numerous paleosols that are consistent with seasonality and successional vegetative cover. Drab colors in fine-grained sediments, abundant carbonaceous plant material, and common siderite nodules and jarosite suggest widespread reducing conditions on poorly-drained floodplains influenced in more distal areas by marine waters. In addition, these rocks contain high levels of organic carbon and charcoal. Carbonaceous root-traces found ubiquitously within all distributary channels and most floodplain facies, along with common Fe-oxide mottles, indicate that the alluvial system likely experienced flashy, seasonal, or ephemeral flow and a fluctuating water table. The flashy nature of the alluvial system may have been driven by recurring episodes of vigorous seasonal snowmelt in the Brooks Range orogenic belt as a consequence of the high paleolatitude of northern Alaska in the Late Cretaceous. The presence of dinosaurian megaherbivores suggests that water was

  11. Tundra landform and vegetation productivity trend maps for the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lara, Mark J; Nitze, Ingmar; Grosse, Guido; McGuire, A David

    2018-04-10

    Arctic tundra landscapes are composed of a complex mosaic of patterned ground features, varying in soil moisture, vegetation composition, and surface hydrology over small spatial scales (10-100 m). The importance of microtopography and associated geomorphic landforms in influencing ecosystem structure and function is well founded, however, spatial data products describing local to regional scale distribution of patterned ground or polygonal tundra geomorphology are largely unavailable. Thus, our understanding of local impacts on regional scale processes (e.g., carbon dynamics) may be limited. We produced two key spatiotemporal datasets spanning the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska (~60,000 km 2 ) to evaluate climate-geomorphological controls on arctic tundra productivity change, using (1) a novel 30 m classification of polygonal tundra geomorphology and (2) decadal-trends in surface greenness using the Landsat archive (1999-2014). These datasets can be easily integrated and adapted in an array of local to regional applications such as (1) upscaling plot-level measurements (e.g., carbon/energy fluxes), (2) mapping of soils, vegetation, or permafrost, and/or (3) initializing ecosystem biogeochemistry, hydrology, and/or habitat modeling.

  12. Haze and other aerosol components in late winter Arctic Alaska, 1986

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shao-Meng Li; Winchester, J.W.

    1990-01-01

    Three coarse and five fine aerosol components of different elemental compositions were identified at Barrow, Alaska, from March 17 to April 21, 1986. In the coarse (> 2.5 μm), two components C-1 and C-2 had abundant Si, S, Cl, K, and Ca, but no Al, and together contained 85% of coarse S. Their compositions resembled expected products of carbonaceous fuel combustion, with Si being volatilized by carbon reduction and other metals volatilized perhaps as chloride salts. C-1, with high trace metal contents, might be from nonferrous smelting, whereas C-2, with high Fe, might be associated with conventional coal combustion. The third component C-3 was a dust aerosol rich in Al that contained high S but low Cl, suggesting saturation with H 2 SO 4 and therefore aged and regional aerosols perhaps typical of the late winter Arctic. In the fine ( 2 oxidation and condensation on fine Si-rich particles. The trace metal aerosol was always present and could have been generated from nonferrous smelters at lower latitudes. The results show that certain winter meteorological conditions favor pollutant transport from lower latitudes to the Arctic. But while haze is related to industrial pollutants, other nonpollution products are present in the winter Arctic and may be important constituents of haze

  13. Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) Atlas: Alaska - 2, Northwest Arctic - 2002, North Slope - 2005, Western - 2003, maps and geographic systems data (NODC Accession 0049913)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set comprises the Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) data for Northwest Arctic, North Slope, and Western Alaska. ESI data characterize estuarine...

  14. Resource partitioning between Pacific walruses and bearded seals in the Alaska Arctic and sub-Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oxtoby, L E; Horstmann, L; Budge, S M; O'Brien, D M; Wang, S W; Schollmeier, T; Wooller, M J

    2017-06-01

    Climate-mediated changes in the phenology of Arctic sea ice and primary production may alter benthic food webs that sustain populations of Pacific walruses (Odobenus rosmarus divergens) and bearded seals (Erignathus barbatus). Interspecific resource competition could place an additional strain on ice-associated marine mammals already facing loss of sea ice habitat. Using fatty acid (FA) profiles, FA trophic markers, and FA stable carbon isotope analyses, we found that walruses and bearded seals partitioned food resources in 2009-2011. Interspecific differences in FA profiles were largely driven by variation in non-methylene FAs, which are markers of benthic invertebrate prey taxa, indicating varying consumption of specific benthic prey. We used Bayesian multi-source FA stable isotope mixing models to estimate the proportional contributions of particulate organic matter (POM) from sympagic (ice algal), pelagic, and benthic sources to these apex predators. Proportional contributions of FAs to walruses and bearded seals from benthic POM sources were high [44 (17-67)% and 62 (38-83)%, respectively] relative to other sources of POM. Walruses also obtained considerable contributions of FAs from pelagic POM sources [51 (32-73)%]. Comparison of δ 13 C values of algal FAs from walruses and bearded seals to those from benthic prey from different feeding groups from the Chukchi and Bering seas revealed that different trophic pathways sustained walruses and bearded seals. Our findings suggest that (1) resource partitioning may mitigate interspecific competition, and (2) climate change impacts on Arctic food webs may elicit species-specific responses in these high trophic level consumers.

  15. Methane turnover and environmental change from Holocene biomarker records in a thermokarst lake in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elvert, Marcus; Pohlman, John; Becker, Kevin W.; Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Hinrichs, Kai-Uwe; Wooller, Matthew J.

    2016-01-01

    Arctic lakes and wetlands contribute a substantial amount of methane to the contemporary atmosphere, yet profound knowledge gaps remain regarding the intensity and climatic control of past methane emissions from this source. In this study, we reconstruct methane turnover and environmental conditions, including estimates of mean annual and summer temperature, from a thermokarst lake (Lake Qalluuraq) on the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska for the Holocene by using source-specific lipid biomarkers preserved in a radiocarbon-dated sediment core. Our results document a more prominent role for methane in the carbon cycle when the lake basin was an emergent fen habitat between ~12,300 and ~10,000 cal yr BP, a time period closely coinciding with the Holocene Thermal Maximum (HTM) in North Alaska. Enhanced methane turnover was stimulated by relatively warm temperatures, increased moisture, nutrient supply, and primary productivity. After ~10,000 cal yr BP, a thermokarst lake with abundant submerged mosses evolved, and through the mid-Holocene temperatures were approximately 3°C cooler. Under these conditions, organic matter decomposition was attenuated, which facilitated the accumulation of submerged mosses within a shallower Lake Qalluuraq. Reduced methane assimilation into biomass during the mid-Holocene suggests that thermokarst lakes are carbon sinks during cold periods. In the late-Holocene from ~2700 cal yr BP to the most recent time, however, temperatures and carbon deposition rose and methane oxidation intensified, indicating that more rapid organic matter decomposition and enhanced methane production could amplify climate feedback via potential methane emissions in the future.

  16. Inundation, sedimentation, and subsidence creates goose habitat along the Arctic coast of Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tape, Ken D; Flint, Paul L; Meixell, Brandt W; Gaglioti, Benjamin V

    2013-01-01

    The Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska is characterized by thermokarst lakes and drained lake basins, and the rate of coastal erosion has increased during the last half-century. Portions of the coast are <1 m above sea level for kilometers inland, and are underlain by ice-rich permafrost. Increased storm surges or terrestrial subsidence would therefore expand the area subject to marine inundation. Since 1976, the distribution of molting Black Brant (Branta bernicla nigricans) on the Arctic Coastal Plain has shifted from inland freshwater lakes to coastal marshes, such as those occupying the Smith River and Garry Creek estuaries. We hypothesized that the movement of geese from inland lakes was caused by an expansion of high quality goose forage in coastal areas. We examined the recent history of vegetation and geomorphological changes in coastal goose habitat by combining analysis of time series imagery between 1948 and 2010 with soil stratigraphy dated using bomb-curve radiocarbon. Time series of vertical imagery and in situ verification showed permafrost thaw and subsidence of polygonal tundra. Soil stratigraphy and dating within coastal estuaries showed that non-saline vegetation communities were buried by multiple sedimentation episodes between 1948 and 1995, accompanying a shift toward salt-tolerant vegetation. This sedimentation allowed high quality goose forage plants to expand, thus facilitating the shift in goose distribution. Declining sea ice and the increasing rate of terrestrial inundation, sedimentation, and subsidence in coastal estuaries of Alaska may portend a ‘tipping point’ whereby inland areas would be transformed into salt marshes. (letter)

  17. Inundation, sedimentation, and subsidence creates goose habitat along the Arctic coast of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tape, Ken D.; Flint, Paul L.; Meixell, Brandt W.; Gaglioti, Benjamin V.

    2013-12-01

    The Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska is characterized by thermokarst lakes and drained lake basins, and the rate of coastal erosion has increased during the last half-century. Portions of the coast are forage in coastal areas. We examined the recent history of vegetation and geomorphological changes in coastal goose habitat by combining analysis of time series imagery between 1948 and 2010 with soil stratigraphy dated using bomb-curve radiocarbon. Time series of vertical imagery and in situ verification showed permafrost thaw and subsidence of polygonal tundra. Soil stratigraphy and dating within coastal estuaries showed that non-saline vegetation communities were buried by multiple sedimentation episodes between 1948 and 1995, accompanying a shift toward salt-tolerant vegetation. This sedimentation allowed high quality goose forage plants to expand, thus facilitating the shift in goose distribution. Declining sea ice and the increasing rate of terrestrial inundation, sedimentation, and subsidence in coastal estuaries of Alaska may portend a ‘tipping point’ whereby inland areas would be transformed into salt marshes.

  18. Soil moisture control over autumn season methane flux, Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. S. Sturtevant

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Accurate estimates of annual budgets of methane (CH4 efflux in arctic regions are severely constrained by the paucity of non-summer measurements. Moreover, the incomplete understanding of the ecosystem-level sensitivity of CH4 emissions to changes in tundra moisture makes prediction of future CH4 release from the Arctic extremely difficult. This study addresses some of these research gaps by presenting an analysis of eddy covariance and chamber measurements of CH4 efflux and supporting environmental variables during the autumn season and associated beginning of soil freeze-up at our large-scale water manipulation site near Barrow, Alaska (the Biocomplexity Experiment. We found that the autumn season CH4 emission is significant (accounting for 21–25% of the average growing season emission, and that this emission is mostly controlled by the fraction of inundated landscape, atmospheric turbulence, and the decline in unfrozen water during the period of soil freezing. Drainage decreased autumn CH4 emission by a factor of 2.4 compared to our flooded treatment. Flooding slowed the soil freezing process which has implications for extending elevated CH4 emissions longer into the winter season.

  19. The thin brown line: The crucial role of peat in protecting permafrost in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaglioti, B.; Mann, D. H.; Farquharson, L. M.; Baughman, C. A.; Jones, B. M.; Romanovsky, V. E.; Williams, A. P.; Andreu-Hayles, L.

    2017-12-01

    Arctic Alaska, modeling suggests that a threshold is imminent.

  20. Seepage erosion of Arctic coastal bluffs driven by thawing permafrost in Northwest Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Phillips, C. B.; Jerolmack, D. J.; Crosby, B. T.

    2010-12-01

    On the forefront of transient landscapes is the Arctic. Air and sea surface temperatures have increased significantly in the last 50 years due to anthropogenic warming, and have been blamed for observed accelerations in coastal erosion rates and the formation of thermokarst features. The controls that permafrost exerts on landforms and sediment transport are largely unknown, but may be elucidated by examining landscape response to permafrost thaw. Using current and historical aerial photos of Northwest Alaska we identified an area of coastal bluffs experiencing increased erosion. What makes this portion of the coast unusual is that erosion is not driven by thermomechanical action from waves, however waves are important in the removal of material from the base of the slump. Instead, retrogressive slump failures - which have seen accelerated growth in the 1900s - initiated the growth of headward cutting alcoves that have now penetrated up to a hundred meters inland. Our field topographic surveys reveal that slumps decrease in slope and increase in circularity with increasing size, suggesting a temporal growth progression toward an asymptotic quasi-circular planform shape. Morphometric scaling relationships suggest that groundwater seepage erosion may be driving alcove growth. Junction angles of alcoves, and the trajectories of headcutting measured from repeat aerial photography, also support a model of ground water competition as the primary mechanism of continued growth. Coastal erosion rates do not depend on solar radiation flux; we propose therefore that seepage water is derived from a vertical lowering of the permafrost table, by thaw resulting from increased ambient air temperatures. Slump features such as those observed here are expected to become more numerous on Arctic coastal and river bluffs in the approaching decades as mean summer air temperatures continue to rise. Thawing of permafrost shows how the Arctic landscape is out of equilibrium, eroding as a

  1. Health aspects of Arctic exploration – Alaska's medical history based on the research files of Dr. Robert Fortuine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathleen Murray

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Background . Robert Fortuine provided basic medical care to Alaska Native people, chronicled the Health Aspects of Arctic Exploration and through a number of influential publications, was the first to thoroughly document and analyse Alaska's Medical History. This overview of his published work will provide the reader with a detailed overview, so that they can begin to explore Dr. Fortuine's many published works in more detail. Objective . This review will explore Alaska's Medical History and the Health Aspects of Arctic Exploration through the research files and the 10 most significant publications of Dr. Robert Fortuine. Design . Review of Dr. Fortuine's major works and the master bibliography has over 3,000 references and 81 subjects. The master bibliography is a merger of 55 separate bibliographies, which provides a wealth of bibliographic information. This paper will describe his 10 most significant publications, 2 of which began as a journal issue. Results . Dr. Fortuine was a prolific writer throughout his career, publishing 134 articles and books. He wrote papers and books on Alaska's medical history, tuberculosis and health care delivery from Russian–America through the Public Health Service efforts in the territory and then the State of Alaska. The master bibliography has over 3,000 references and 81 subjects. This list has a significant number of entries for tuberculosis with almost one-third of the entries including this heading. Others dwell on the history of “pre-contact” health, the history of Alaska Native health care, the history of the Alaska Department of Health, especially the tuberculosis programme, the role of the US Public Health Service and traditional medicine. He completely reviewed every Governors’ and the US Surgeon General's reports in regard to Alaska content. This paper describes his 10 most significant publications. Conclusions . Robert Fortuine's published works offer a wealth of information and insight

  2. Local Community Verification of Coastal Erosion Risks in the Arctic: Insights from Alaska's North Slope

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brady, M.

    2016-12-01

    During his historic trip to Alaska in 2015, U.S. President Barack Obama announced a collaborative effort to update maps of the Arctic region in anticipation of increased maritime access and resource development and to support climate resilience. Included in this effort is development of an Arctic-wide satellite-based digital elevation model (DEM) to provide a baseline to monitor landscape change such as coastal erosion. Focusing in Alaska's North Slope, an objective of this study is to transform emerging Arctic environment spatial data products including the new DEM into information that can support local level planning and decision-making in the face of extreme coastal erosion and related environmental threats. In pursuit of this, in 2016, 4 workshops were held in three North Slope villages highly exposed to coastal erosion. The first workshop with approximately 10 managers in Barrow solicited feedback on an erosion risk database developed in a previous research stage and installed onto the North Slope's planning Web portal. The database includes a physical risk indicator based on factors such as historical erosion and effects of sea ice loss summarized at asset locations. After a demonstration of the database, participants discussed usability aspects such as data reliability. The focus of the mapping workshops in Barrow and two smaller villages Wainwright and Kaktovik was to verify and expand the risk database by interactively mapping erosion observations and community asset impacts. Using coded stickers and paper maps of the shoreline showing USGS erosion rates, a total of 50 participants provided feedback on erosion data accuracy. Approximately 25 of the total 50 participants were elders and hunters who also provided in-depth community risk information. The workshop with managers confirmed physical risk factors used in the risk database, and revealed that the information may be relied upon to support some development decisions and better engage developers about

  3. Scenarios in Social-Ecological Systems: Co-Producing Futures in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lovecraft, A. L.; Eicken, H.

    2016-12-01

    Companies use scenarios to gain the capacity to think ahead in rapidly changing complex competitive environments and make crucial decisions in absence of complete information about the future. Currently, at many regional scales of governance there is a growing need for tools that enable the actors at local-scales to address pressing concerns in the midst of uncertainty. This is particularly true of areas experiencing rapidly changing environments (e.g., drought, floods, diminishing sea ice, erosion) and complex social problems (e.g., remote communities, resource extraction, threatened cultures). Resilience theory and deliberative democracy both promote governance by informed actors in an effort to produce decisions that avoid social-environmental collapse. The former focusing on resilient ecosystems, the latter on informed social choices. Scenario exercises produce neither forecasts of what is to come nor are they visions of what participants would like to happen. Rather, they produce pertinent and accurate information related to questions of "what would happen if…" and thus provide the possibility of strategic decision-making to reduce risk and promote community resilience. Scenarios can be forms of social learning and among local-scale experts they create a deliberative process to make decisions about proactive adaptation. This talk represents the results from two projects from Alaska's Arctic Slope region. Resident expert participants from the Northwest Arctic and North Slope Boroughs addressed the focal question "What is needed for healthy sustainable communities by 2040?" Our findings reinforce the growing evidence from studies related to Arctic community sustainability and human development that indicate tight connections between fate-control, health, and environmental change. Our work differs, however, in using a future studies approach. The participants are addressing social-ecological resilience from a proactive standpoint thinking long-term about local

  4. Hybrid image classification technique for land-cover mapping in the Arctic tundra, North Slope, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaudhuri, Debasish

    Remotely sensed image classification techniques are very useful to understand vegetation patterns and species combination in the vast and mostly inaccessible arctic region. Previous researches that were done for mapping of land cover and vegetation in the remote areas of northern Alaska have considerably low accuracies compared to other biomes. The unique arctic tundra environment with short growing season length, cloud cover, low sun angles, snow and ice cover hinders the effectiveness of remote sensing studies. The majority of image classification research done in this area as reported in the literature used traditional unsupervised clustering technique with Landsat MSS data. It was also emphasized by previous researchers that SPOT/HRV-XS data lacked the spectral resolution to identify the small arctic tundra vegetation parcels. Thus, there is a motivation and research need to apply a new classification technique to develop an updated, detailed and accurate vegetation map at a higher spatial resolution i.e. SPOT-5 data. Traditional classification techniques in remotely sensed image interpretation are based on spectral reflectance values with an assumption of the training data being normally distributed. Hence it is difficult to add ancillary data in classification procedures to improve accuracy. The purpose of this dissertation was to develop a hybrid image classification approach that effectively integrates ancillary information into the classification process and combines ISODATA clustering, rule-based classifier and the Multilayer Perceptron (MLP) classifier which uses artificial neural network (ANN). The main goal was to find out the best possible combination or sequence of classifiers for typically classifying tundra type vegetation that yields higher accuracy than the existing classified vegetation map from SPOT data. Unsupervised ISODATA clustering and rule-based classification techniques were combined to produce an intermediate classified map which was

  5. Genetics, recruitment, and migration patterns of Arctic Cisco (Coregonus autumnalis) in the Colville River, Alaska and Mackenzie River, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmerman, Christian E.; Ramey, Andy M.; Turner, S.; Mueter, Franz J.; Murphy, S.; Nielsen, Jennifer L.

    2013-01-01

    Arctic cisco Coregonus autumnalis have a complex anadromous life history, many aspects of which remain poorly understood. Some life history traits of Arctic cisco from the Colville River, Alaska, and Mackenzie River basin, Canada, were investigated using molecular genetics, harvest data, and otolith microchemistry. The Mackenzie hypothesis, which suggests that Arctic cisco found in Alaskan waters originate from the Mackenzie River system, was tested using 11 microsatellite loci and a single mitochondrial DNA gene. No genetic differentiation was found among sample collections from the Colville River and the Mackenzie River system using molecular markers (P > 0.19 in all comparisons). Model-based clustering methods also supported genetic admixture between sample collections from the Colville River and Mackenzie River basin. A reanalysis of recruitment patterns to Alaska, which included data from recent warm periods and suspected changes in atmospheric circulation patterns, still finds that recruitment is correlated to wind conditions. Otolith microchemistry (Sr/Ca ratios) confirmed repeated, annual movements of Arctic cisco between low-salinity habitats in winter and marine waters in summer.

  6. Tracking and unpacking rapid Arctic change: Indicators of community health and sustainability in northern Alaska and links to cryospheric change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eicken, H.; Sam, J. M.; Mueller-stoffels, M.; Lovecraft, A. L.; Fresco, N. L.

    2017-12-01

    Tracking and responding to rapid Arctic change benefits from time series of indicator variables that describe the state of the system and can inform anticipatory action. A key challenge is to identify and monitor sets of indicators that capture relevant variability, trends, and transitions in social-environmental systems. We present findings from participatory scenarios focused on community health and sustainability in northern Alaska. In a series of workshops in 2015 and 2016 (Kotzebue workshop photo shown below), over 50 experts, mostly local, identified determinants of community health and sustainability by 2040 in the Northwest Arctic and North Slope Boroughs, Alaska. Drawing on further research, an initial set of factors and uncertainties was refined and prioritized into a total of 20 key drivers, ranging from governance issues to socio-economic and environmental factors. The research team then developed sets of future projections that describe plausible outcomes by mid-century for each of these drivers. A plausibility and consistency analysis of all pairwise combinations of these projections (following Mueller-Stoffels and Eicken, In: North by 2020 - Perspectives on Alaska's Changing Social-Ecological Systems, University of Alaska Press, 2011) resulted in the identification of robust scenarios. The latter were further reviewed by workshop participants, and a set of indicator variables, including indicators of relevant cryospheric change, was identified to help track trajectories towards plausible future states. Publically accessible recorded data only exist for a subset of the more than 70 indicators, reaching back a few years to several decades. For several indicators, the sampling rate or time series length are insufficient for tracking of and response to change. A core set of variables has been identified that meets indicator requirements and can serve as a tool for Alaska Arctic communities in adapting to or mitigating rapid change affecting community

  7. Post-fire Thermokarst Development Along a Planned Road Corridor in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, B. M.; Grosse, G.; Larsen, C. F.; Hayes, D. J.; Arp, C. D.; Liu, L.; Miller, E.

    2015-12-01

    Wildfire disturbance in northern high latitude regions is an important factor contributing to ecosystem and landscape change. In permafrost influenced terrain, fire may initiate thermokarst development which impacts hydrology, vegetation, wildlife, carbon storage and infrastructure. In this study we differenced two airborne LiDAR datasets that were acquired in the aftermath of the large and severe Anaktuvuk River tundra fire, which in 2007 burned across a proposed road corridor in Arctic Alaska. The 2009 LiDAR dataset was acquired by the Alaska Department of Transportation in preparation for construction of a gravel road that would connect the Dalton Highway with the logistical camp of Umiat. The 2014 LiDAR dataset was acquired by the USGS to quantify potential post-fire thermokarst development over the first seven years following the tundra fire event. By differencing the two 1 m resolution digital terrain models, we measured permafrost thaw subsidence across 34% of the burned tundra area studied, and observed less than 1% in similar, undisturbed tundra terrain units. Ice-rich, yedoma upland terrain was most susceptible to thermokarst development following the disturbance, accounting for 50% of the areal and volumetric change detected, with some locations subsiding more than six meters over the study period. Calculation of rugosity, or surface roughness, in the two datasets showed a doubling in microtopography on average across the burned portion of the study area, with a 340% increase in yedoma upland terrain. An additional LiDAR dataset was acquired in April 2015 to document the role of thermokarst development on enhanced snow accumulation and subsequent snowmelt runoff within the burn area. Our findings will enable future vulnerability assessments of ice-rich permafrost terrain as a result of shifting disturbance regimes. Such assessments are needed to address questions focused on the impact of permafrost degradation on physical, ecological, and socio

  8. Succession Stages of Tundra Plant Communities Following Wildfire Disturbance in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Breen, A. L.; Hollingsworth, T. N.; Mack, M. C.; Jones, B. M.

    2015-12-01

    Rapid climate change is affecting climate-sensitive disturbance regimes throughout the world. In particular, the impacts of climate change on Arctic disturbance regimes are poorly understood because landscape-scale disturbances are infrequent or occur in remote localities. Wildfire in Arctic Alaska is presently limited by ignition source and favorable burn weather. With rapid climate change, a lengthening growing season, and subsequent increase in plant biomass and productivity, wildfire frequency and annual area burned in tundra ecosystems is expected to increase over the next century. Yet, post-fire tundra vegetation succession is inadequately characterized except at a few point locations. We identify succession stages of tussock tundra communities following wildfire using a chronosequence of 65 relevés in 10 tundra fire scars (1971-2011) and nearby unburned tundra from sites on the Seward Peninsula and northern foothills of the Brooks Range. We used the Braun-Blanquét approach to classify plant communities, and applied nonmetric multidimentional scaling (NMDS) to identify ecological gradients underlying community differentiation. The ordination revealed a clear differentiation between unburned and burned tundra communities. Ecological gradients, reflected by ordination axes, correspond to fire history (e.g., time since last fire, number of times burned, burn severity) and a complex productivity gradient. Post-fire species richness is less than unburned tundra; primarily reflected as a decrease in lichen species and turnover of bryophyte species immediately post-fire. Species richness of grasses increases post-fire and is greatest in communities that burned more than once in the past 30 years. Shrub cover and total aboveground biomass are greatest in repeat burn sites. We review and discuss our results focusing on the implications of a changing tundra fire regime, its effect on vegetation succession trajectories, and subsequent rates of carbon sequestration and

  9. Bromine atom production and chain propagation during springtime Arctic ozone depletion events in Barrow, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, Chelsea R.; Shepson, Paul B.; Liao, Jin; Huey, L. Greg; Cantrell, Chris; Flocke, Frank; Orlando, John

    2017-03-01

    Ozone depletion events (ODEs) in the Arctic are primarily controlled by a bromine radical-catalyzed destruction mechanism that depends on the efficient production and recycling of Br atoms. Numerous laboratory and modeling studies have suggested the importance of heterogeneous recycling of Br through HOBr reaction with bromide on saline surfaces. On the other hand, the gas-phase regeneration of bromine atoms through BrO-BrO radical reactions has been assumed to be an efficient, if not dominant, pathway for Br reformation and thus ozone destruction. Indeed, it has been estimated that the rate of ozone depletion is approximately equal to twice the rate of the BrO self-reaction. Here, we use a zero-dimensional, photochemical model, largely constrained to observations of stable atmospheric species from the 2009 Ocean-Atmosphere-Sea Ice-Snowpack (OASIS) campaign in Barrow, Alaska, to investigate gas-phase bromine radical propagation and recycling mechanisms of bromine atoms for a 7-day period during late March. This work is a continuation of that presented in Thompson et al. (2015) and utilizes the same model construct. Here, we use the gas-phase radical chain length as a metric for objectively quantifying the efficiency of gas-phase recycling of bromine atoms. The gas-phase bromine chain length is determined to be quite small, at < 1.5, and highly dependent on ambient O3 concentrations. Furthermore, we find that Br atom production from photolysis of Br2 and BrCl, which is predominately emitted from snow and/or aerosol surfaces, can account for between 30 and 90 % of total Br atom production. This analysis suggests that condensed-phase production of bromine is at least as important as, and at times greater than, gas-phase recycling for the occurrence of Arctic ODEs. Therefore, the rate of the BrO self-reaction is not a sufficient estimate for the rate of O3 depletion.

  10. Physical and chemical characteristics of lakes across heterogeneous landscapes in arctic and subarctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larsen, A. S.; O'Donnell, J. A.; Schmidt, J. H.; Kristenson, H. J.; Swanson, D. K.

    2017-04-01

    Lakes are an important component of high-latitude regions, providing habitat for fish and wildlife and playing a critical role in biogeochemical and global carbon cycles. High-latitude lakes are sensitive to climate change, in part due to their development within permafrost soils. Considerable heterogeneity exists across arctic and subarctic landscapes, yet little is known about how this landscape variability influences chemical and physical attributes of lakes. We investigated the physical and chemical limnology of 617 lakes in Alaska's boreal forest and boreal-arctic transition zone. We categorized lakes into 10 basin types based on parent material, topography, genesis, and permafrost characteristics. Physical parameters varied across lake basin types, with the deepest lakes occurring in ice-poor glacial deposits and ice-rich terrain, while the shallowest lakes were observed in floodplain deposits and coastal lowlands. Dissolved inorganic nitrogen (N) and phosphorous (P) concentrations were generally low across all landscapes, whereas total N and P were highest in lakes underlain by ice-rich Pleistocene loess. Total N and P concentrations were significantly correlated with chlorophyll a, indicating a possible colimitation of primary productivity in these systems. Base cation concentrations helped elucidate lake basin hydrology and the relative influence of shallow versus deep groundwater inputs to surface water. Using these results, we developed a simple conceptual model for each lake and landscape type based on differences in physical and chemical parameters. Overall, we expect that the vulnerability of lake ecosystems to climate change will vary across lake basin types and will be mediated by spatial patterns in permafrost characteristics and subsurface hydrology.

  11. Varying boreal forest response to Arctic environmental change at the Firth River, Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Andreu-Hayles, Laia; D'Arrigo, Rosanne; Anchukaitis, Kevin J; Beck, Pieter S A; Goetz, Scott; Frank, David

    2011-01-01

    The response of boreal forests to anthropogenic climate change remains uncertain, with potentially significant impacts for the global carbon cycle, albedo, canopy evapotranspiration and feedbacks into further climate change. Here, we focus on tree-ring data from the Firth River site at treeline in northeastern Alaska, in a tundra–forest transition region where pronounced warming has already occurred. Both tree-ring width (TRW) and maximum latewood density (MXD) chronologies were developed to identify the nature of tree growth and density responses to climatic and environmental changes in white spruce (Picea glauca), a dominant Arctic treeline species. Good agreement was found between the interannual fluctuations in the TRW chronology and summer temperatures from 1901 to 1950, whereas no significant relationships were found from 1951 to 2001, supporting evidence of significant divergence between TRW and summer temperature in the second half of the 20th century. In contrast to this unstable climatic response in the TRW record, the high frequency July–August temperature signal in the MXD series seems reasonably stable through the 20th century. Wider and denser rings were more frequent during the 20th century, particularly after 1950, than in previous centuries. Finally, comparison between the tree-ring proxies and a satellite-derived vegetation index suggests that TRW and MXD correlate with vegetation productivity at the landscape level at different times of the growing season.

  12. Metagenomic survey for viruses in Western Arctic caribou, Alaska, through iterative assembly of taxonomic units.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anita C Schürch

    Full Text Available Pathogen surveillance in animals does not provide a sufficient level of vigilance because it is generally confined to surveillance of pathogens with known economic impact in domestic animals and practically nonexistent in wildlife species. As most (re-emerging viral infections originate from animal sources, it is important to obtain insight into viral pathogens present in the wildlife reservoir from a public health perspective. When monitoring living, free-ranging wildlife for viruses, sample collection can be challenging and availability of nucleic acids isolated from samples is often limited. The development of viral metagenomics platforms allows a more comprehensive inventory of viruses present in wildlife. We report a metagenomic viral survey of the Western Arctic herd of barren ground caribou (Rangifer tarandus granti in Alaska, USA. The presence of mammalian viruses in eye and nose swabs of 39 free-ranging caribou was investigated by random amplification combined with a metagenomic analysis approach that applied exhaustive iterative assembly of sequencing results to define taxonomic units of each metagenome. Through homology search methods we identified the presence of several mammalian viruses, including different papillomaviruses, a novel parvovirus, polyomavirus, and a virus that potentially represents a member of a novel genus in the family Coronaviridae.

  13. Millennial-scale variability in Holocene aquatic productivity from Burial Lake, Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finkenbinder, Matthew S.; Abbott, Mark B.; Stoner, Joseph S.; Ortiz, Joseph D.; Finney, Bruce P.; Dorfman, Jason M.; Stansell, Nathan D.

    2018-05-01

    Holocene records of lacustrine primary production are commonly used to reconstruct past changes in environmental and climatic conditions. While several methods exist to infer paleoproductivity trends, few studies to date have applied multiple geochemical indices in the same core sequence from Arctic lakes to evaluate their fidelity and sensitivity to specific climate variables over long (Holocene length) timescales. In this study, we evaluate sub-century to millennial-scale fluctuations in paleoproductivity over the Holocene using geochemical (biogenic opal and sedimentary chlorin) analyses of sediments from Burial Lake in the western Brooks Range, Alaska. Large fluctuations in opal and related proxies occur at millennial timescales over the last 10,000 years. We interpret the changes in opal to result from variability in diatom productivity, which is indirectly mediated by climate primarily through changes in the duration of the ice-free growing season and the availability of limiting nutrients at this oligotrophic, tundra lake. Comparison of the opal and sedimentary chlorin record, which is correlated with TOC, shows contrasting patterns on both short (century to multi-century) and relatively long (millennial) time scales. The concentration of opal far exceeds that of TOC and variations in sediment dry bulk density, driven by changes in the accumulation of opal, are likely responsible in part for the variations in sedimentary chlorin. Further, C/N ratio values indicate a mixed algal-terrestrial source of sedimentary organic matter. This result highlights the complexity in the climatic interpretation of sedimentary chlorin as an index of whole lake production, because the signal is prone to dilution/concentration from opal and also reflects a combination of aquatic and terrestrial production. Time series analysis of the productivity records indicates the presence of a significant ∼1500-yr oscillation in opal concentration, which has been found in North Atlantic

  14. A lake-centric geospatial database to guide research and inform management decisions in an Arctic watershed in northern Alaska experiencing climate and land-use changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Benjamin M; Arp, Christopher D; Whitman, Matthew S; Nigro, Debora; Nitze, Ingmar; Beaver, John; Gädeke, Anne; Zuck, Callie; Liljedahl, Anna; Daanen, Ronald; Torvinen, Eric; Fritz, Stacey; Grosse, Guido

    2017-11-01

    Lakes are dominant and diverse landscape features in the Arctic, but conventional land cover classification schemes typically map them as a single uniform class. Here, we present a detailed lake-centric geospatial database for an Arctic watershed in northern Alaska. We developed a GIS dataset consisting of 4362 lakes that provides information on lake morphometry, hydrologic connectivity, surface area dynamics, surrounding terrestrial ecotypes, and other important conditions describing Arctic lakes. Analyzing the geospatial database relative to fish and bird survey data shows relations to lake depth and hydrologic connectivity, which are being used to guide research and aid in the management of aquatic resources in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska. Further development of similar geospatial databases is needed to better understand and plan for the impacts of ongoing climate and land-use changes occurring across lake-rich landscapes in the Arctic.

  15. The North Slope of Alaska and Tourism: Potential Impacts on the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Everett, L. R.

    2004-12-01

    The hydrocarbon industry of Alaska is currently the leading producer of revenue for the Alaskan state economy. Second only to hydrocarbons is the tourism industry. Tourism has been a viable industry since the 1890's when cruises touted the beauty of glaciers and icebergs along the Alaskan coastline. This industry has seen a steady growth for the past few decades throughout the state. The North Slope of Alaska, particularly Prudhoe Bay and the National Petroleum Reserve, has long been associated with hydrocarbon development and today displays a landscape dotted with gravel drill pads, gas and oil pipelines and housing for the oil workers. While tourism is not usually considered hand in hand with the hydrocarbon industry, it has mimicked the development of hydrocarbons almost since the beginning. Today one not only sees the effects of the oil industry on the North Slope, but also the tourist industry as planes unload dozens of tourists, or tour buses and private vehicles arrive daily via the Dalton Highway. In Deadhorse, hotels that once only housed the oil workers now welcome the tourist, offering tours of the oil fields and adjacent areas and have become jumping off sites for wilderness trips. Tourism will create jobs as well as revenue. However, at present, there are few restrictions or guidelines in place that will deal with the potential impacts of increased tourism. Because of this there are many concerns about the possible impacts tourism and the infrastructure development will have on the North Slope. To list several concerns: (1) What are the impacts of increased tourism and the infrastructure development? (2) What will the impacts be on the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), which sits a mere 60 miles to the east of Deadhorse? (3) Will hydrocarbon development in ANWR and the associated infrastructure exacerbate potential impact by encouraging greater use of the Refuge by tourists? (4) Will tourism itself have a negative impact on this fragile

  16. Remotely Sensing Lake Water Volumes on the Inner Arctic Coastal Plain of Northern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simpson, C. E.; Arp, C. D.; Jones, B. M.; Hinkel, K. M.; Carroll, M.; Smith, L. C.

    2017-12-01

    Thermokarst lake depth is controlled by the amount of excess ice in near-surface permafrost, with lake depths of about 1 - 3 m in areas of epigenetic permafrost and over 10 m in areas of syngenetic permafrost. An important exception to these general patterns is found on the inner Arctic Coastal Plain (ACP) of northern Alaska, where deep lakes occur in Pleistocene-aged, ground-ice poor sandy terrain. These lakes cover 20% of the currently inactive sand sheet and dune deposit (referred to as the Pleistocene Sand Sea) that comprises approximately 7000 km2 of the ACP. Surrounded by high and eroding bluffs, sand sea lakes lie in natural depressions and are characterized by wide, shallow littoral shelves and central troughs that are typically oriented NNW to SSE and can reach depths greater than 20 m. Despite their unique form and extensive coverage, these lakes have received little prior study and a literature gap remains regarding regional water storage. This research classifies sand sea lakes, estimates individual lake volume, and provides a first quantification of water storage in a region of the lake-dominated ACP. We measured bathymetric profiles in 19 sand sea lakes using a sonar recorder to capture various lake depth gradients. Bathymetric surveys collected by oil industry consultants, lake monitoring programs, and habitat studies serve as additional datasets. These field measured lake depth data points were used to classify Color Infrared Photography, WorldView-2 satellite imagery, and Landsat-OLI satellite imagery to develop a spectral depth-classification algorithm and facilitate the interpolation of the bathymetry for study lakes in the inner ACP. Finally, we integrate the remotely sensed bathymetry and imagery-derived lake surface area to estimate individual and regional-scale lake volume. In addition to the natural function of these lakes in water storage, energy balance, and habitat provision, the need for winter water supply to build ice roads for oil

  17. Arctic continental shelf morphology related to sea-ice zonation, Beaufort Sea, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reimnitz, E.; Toimil, L.; Barnes, P.

    1978-01-01

    Landsat-1 and NOAA satellite imagery for the winter 1972-1973, and a variety of ice and sea-floor data were used to study sea-ice zonation and dynamics and their relation to bottom morphology and geology on the Beaufort Sea continental shelf of arctic Alaska. In early winter the location of the boundary between undeformed fast ice and westward-drifting pack ice of the Pacific Gyre is controlled by major coastal promontories. Pronounced linear pressure- and shear-ridges, as well as hummock fields, form along this boundary and are stabilized by grounding, generally between the 10- and 20-m isobaths. Slippage along this boundary occurs intermittently at or seaward of the grounded ridges, forming new grounded ridges in a widening zone, the stamukhi zone, which by late winter extends out to the 40-m isobath. Between intermittent events along the stamukhi zone, pack-ice drift and slippage is continuous along the shelf edge, at average rates of 3-10 km/day. Whether slippage occurs along the stamukhi zone or along the shelf edge, it is restricted to a zone several hundred meters wide, and ice seaward of the slip face moves at uniform rates without discernible drag effects. A causal relationship is seen between the spatial distribution of major ice-ridge systems and offshore shoals downdrift of major coastal promontories. The shoals appear to have migrated shoreward under the influence of ice up to 400 m in the last 25 years. The sea floor seaward of these shoals within the stamukhi zone shows high ice-gouge density, large incision depths, and a high degree of disruption of internal sedimentary structures. The concentration of large ice ridges and our sea floor data in the stamukhi zone indicate that much of the available marine energy is expended here, while the inner shelf and coast, where the relatively undeformed fast ice grows, are sheltered. There is evidence that anomalies in the overall arctic shelf profile are related to sea-ice zonation, ice dynamics, and bottom

  18. Arctic shelves as platforms for biogeochemical activity: Nitrogen and carbon transformations in the Chukchi Sea, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardison, Amber K.; McTigue, Nathan D.; Gardner, Wayne S.; Dunton, Kenneth H.

    2017-10-01

    Continental shelves comprise global ocean area but may account for a disproportionate 30% of primary production, 80% of organic matter burial, and >50% of marine denitrification. The Hanna Shoal region, part of the continental shelf system in the northeast Chukchi Sea, Alaska, is recognized for its high biodiversity and productivity. We investigated the role of sediments in organic matter decomposition and nutrient cycling at five stations on the shallow Hanna Shoal. In particular, we asked (1) how much sediment organic matter is remineralized in the Chukchi Sea, and what factors drive this degradation, (2) do sediments function as a net source for fixed nitrogen (thus fueling primary production in the overlying water), or as a net sink for fixed nitrogen (thereby removing it from the system), and (3) what is the balance between sediment NH4+ uptake and regeneration, and what factors drive NH4+ cycling? We conducted dark sediment core incubations to measure sediment O2 consumption, net N2 and nutrient (NH4+, NO3-, NO2-, PO43-) fluxes, and rates of sediment NH4+ cycling, including uptake and regeneration. Rates of sediment O2 consumption and NH4+ and PO43- efflux suggest that high organic matter remineralization rates occurred in these cold (-2 °C) sediments. We estimated that total organic carbon remineralization accounted for 20-57% of summer export production measured on the Chukchi Shelf. Net N2 release was the dominant nitrogen flux, indicating that sediments acted as a net sink for bioavailable nitrogen via denitrification. Organic carbon remineralization via denitrification accounted for 6-12% of summer export production, which made up 25% of the total organic carbon oxidized in Hanna Shoal sediments. These shallow, productive Arctic shelves are ;hotspots; for organic matter remineralization.

  19. Soil surface organic layers in Arctic Alaska: spatial distribution, rates of formation, and microclimatic effects

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baughman, Carson A.; Mann, Daniel H.; Verbyla, David L.; Kunz, Michael L.

    2015-01-01

    Organic layers of living and dead vegetation cover the ground surface in many permafrost landscapes and play important roles in ecosystem processes. These soil surface organic layers (SSOLs) store large amounts of carbon and buffer the underlying permafrost and its contained carbon from changes in aboveground climate. Understanding the dynamics of SSOLs is a prerequisite for predicting how permafrost and carbon stocks will respond to warming climate. Here we ask three questions about SSOLs in a representative area of the Arctic Foothills region of northern Alaska: (1) What environmental factors control the thickness of SSOLs and the carbon they store? (2) How long do SSOLs take to develop on newly stabilized point bars? (3) How do SSOLs affect temperature in the underlying ground? Results show that SSOL thickness and distribution correlate with elevation, drainage area, vegetation productivity, and incoming solar radiation. A multiple regression model based on these correlations can simulate spatial distribution of SSOLs and estimate the organic carbon stored there. SSOLs develop within a few decades after a new, sandy, geomorphic surface stabilizes but require 500–700 years to reach steady state thickness. Mature SSOLs lower the growing season temperature and mean annual temperature of the underlying mineral soil by 8 and 3°C, respectively. We suggest that the proximate effects of warming climate on permafrost landscapes now covered by SSOLs will occur indirectly via climate's effects on the frequency, extent, and severity of disturbances like fires and landslides that disrupt the SSOLs and interfere with their protection of the underlying permafrost.

  20. Mapping lichen color-groups in western Arctic Alaska using seasonal Landsat composites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, P.; Macander, M. J.; Swingley, C. S.

    2016-12-01

    Mapping lichens at a landscape scale has received increased recent interest due to fears that terricolous lichen mats, primary winter caribou forage, may be decreasing across the arctic and boreal zones. However, previous efforts have produced taxonomically coarse, total lichen cover maps or have covered relatively small spatial extents. Here we attempt to map lichens of differing colors as species proxies across northwestern Alaska to produce the finest taxonomic and spatial- grained lichen maps covering the largest spatial extent to date. Lichen community sampling in five western Alaskan National Parks and Preserves from 2007-2012 generated 328 FIA-style 34.7 m radius plots on which species-level macrolichen community structure and abundance was estimated. Species were coded by color and plot lichen cover was aggregated by plot as the sum of the cover of each species in a color group. Ten different lichen color groupings were used for modeling to deduce which colors were most detectable. Reflectance signatures of each plot were extracted from a series of Landsat composites (circa 2000-2010) partitioned into two-week intervals from June 1 to Sept. 15. Median reflectance values for each band in each pixel were selected based on filtering criteria to reduce likelihood of snow cover. Lichen color group cover was regressed against plot reflectance plus additional abiotic predictors in two different data mining algorithms. Brown and grey lichens had the best models explaining approximately 40% of lichen cover in those color groups. Both data mining techniques produced similarly good fitting models. Spatial patterns of lichen color-group cover show distinctly different ecological patterns of these color-group species proxies.

  1. A new Arctic hadrosaurid from the Prince Creek Formation (lower Maastrichtian of northern Alaska

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hirotsugu Mori

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The Liscomb bonebed in the Price Creek Formation of northern Alaska has produced thousands of individual bones of a saurolophine hadrosaurid similar to Edmontosaurus; however, the specific identity of this taxon has been unclear, in part because the vast majority of the remains represent immature individuals. In this study, we address the taxonomic status of the Alaskan material through a comparative and quantitative morphological analysis of juvenile as well several near adult-sized specimens with particular reference to the two known species of Edmontosaurus, as well as a cladistic analysis using two different matrices for Hadrosauroidea. In the comparative morphological analysis, we introduce a quantitative method using bivariate plots to address ontogenetic variation. Our comparative anatomical analysis reveals that the Alaskan saurolophine possesses a unique suite of characters that distinguishes it from Edmontosaurus, including a premaxillary circumnarial ridge that projects posterolaterally without a premaxillary vestibular promontory, a shallow groove lateral to the posterodorsal premaxillary foramen, a relatively narrow jugal process of the postorbital lacking a postorbital pocket, a relatively tall maxilla, a relatively gracile jugal, a more strongly angled posterior margin of the anterior process of the jugal, wide lateral exposure of the quadratojugal, and a short symphyseal process of the dentary. The cladistic analyses consistently recover the Alaskan saurolophine as the sister taxon to Edmontosaurus annectens + Edmontosaurus regalis. This phylogenetic assessment is robust even when accounting for ontogenetically variable characters. Based on these results, we erect a new taxon, Ugrunaaluk kuukpikensis gen. et sp. nov. that contributes to growing evidence for a distinct, early Maastrichtian Arctic dinosaur community that existed at the northernmost extent of Laramidia during the Late Cretaceous.

  2. Paleoenvironmental analyses of an organic deposit from an erosional landscape remnant, Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Eisner, W R; Bockheim, J G; Hinkel, K M; Brown, T A; Nelson, F E; Peterson, K M; Jones, B M

    2005-01-02

    The dominant landscape process on the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska is the formation and drainage of thaw lakes. Lakes and drained thaw lake basins account for approximately 75% of the modern surface expression of the Barrow Peninsula. The thaw lake cycle usually obliterates lacustrine or peat sediments from previous cycles which could otherwise be used for paleoecological reconstruction of long-term landscape and vegetation changes. Several possible erosional remnants of a former topographic surface that predates the formation of the thaw lakes have been tentatively identified. These remnants are characterized by a higher elevation, a thick organic layer with very high ground ice content in the upper permafrost, and a plant community somewhat atypical of the region. Ten soil cores were collected from one site, and one core was intensively sampled for soil organic carbon content, pollen analysis, and {sup 14}C dating. The lowest level of the organic sediments represents the earliest phase of plant growth and dates to ca. 9000 cal BP. Palynological evidence indicates the presence of mesic shrub tundra (including sedge, birch, willow, and heath vegetation); and microfossil indicators point to wetter eutrophic conditions during this period. Carbon accumulation was rapid due to high net primary productivity in a relatively nutrient-rich environment. These results are interpreted as the local response to ameliorating climate during the early Holocene. The middle Holocene portion of the record contains an unconformity, indicating that between 8200 and 4200 cal BP sediments were eroded from the site, presumably in response to wind activity during a drier period centered around 4500 cal BP. The modern vegetation community of the erosional remnant was established after 4200 cal BP, and peat growth resumed. During the late Holocene, carbon accumulation rates were greatly reduced in response to the combined effects of declining productivity associated with climatic

  3. Projected changes in wildlife habitats in Arctic natural areas of northwest Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcot, Bruce G.; Jorgenson, M. Torre; Lawler, James P.; Handel, Colleen M.; DeGange, Anthony R.

    2015-01-01

    We project the effects of transitional changes among 60 vegetation and other land cover types (“ecotypes”) in northwest Alaska over the 21st century on habitats of 162 bird and 39 mammal species known or expected to occur regularly in the region. This analysis, encompassing a broad suite of arctic and boreal wildlife species, entailed building wildlife-habitat matrices denoting levels of use of each ecotype by each species, and projecting habitat changes under historic and expected accelerated future rates of change from increasing mean annual air temperature based on the average of 5 global climate models under the A1B emissions scenario, and from potential influence of a set of 23 biophysical drivers. Under historic rates of change, we project that 52 % of the 201 species will experience an increase in medium- and high-use habitats, 3 % no change, and 45 % a decrease, and that a greater proportion of mammal species (62 %) will experience habitat declines than will bird species (50 %). Outcomes become more dire (more species showing habitat loss) under projections made from effects of biophysical drivers and especially from increasing temperature, although species generally associated with increasing shrub and tree ecotypes will likely increase in distribution. Changes in wildlife habitats likely will also affect trophic cascades, ecosystem function, and ecosystem services; of particular significance are the projected declines in habitats of most small mammals that form the prey base for mesocarnivores and raptors, and habitat declines in 25 of the 50 bird and mammal species used for subsistence hunting and trapping.

  4. The North Slope of Alaska and Adjacent Arctic Ocean (NSA/AAO) cart site begins operation: Collaboration with SHEBA and FIRE

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Zak, D. B.; Church, H.; Ivey, M.; Yellowhorse, L.; Zirzow, J.; Widener, K. B.; Rhodes, P.; Turney, C.; Koontz, A.; Stamnes, K.; Storvold, R.; Eide, H. A.; Utley, P.; Eagan, R.; Cook, D.; Hart, D.; Wesely, M.

    2000-04-04

    Since the 1997 Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Science Team Meeting, the North Slope of Alaska and Adjacent Arctic Ocean (NSA/AAO) Cloud and Radiation Testbed (CART) site has come into being. Much has happened even since the 1998 Science Team Meeting at which this paper was presented. To maximize its usefulness, this paper has been updated to include developments through July 1998.

  5. Boreogadus saida (Lepechin) (Gadidae): a review of its metazoan parasite fauna from Greenland, eastern Canada, Alaska and the Russian Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Køie, Marianne

    2009-01-01

    The metazoan parasite fauna of 50 specimens of Boreogadus saida (Lepechin) (Gadidae) from eastern Greenland is very similar to those of previous studies of the parasite fauna of B. saida from Greenland, eastern Canada, Alaska and the Russian Arctic. The digeneans Hemiurus levinseni, Derogenes var...... are transferred to predatory fish, birds and mammals through the food web....

  6. Oblique Aerial Photography of the Arctic Coast of Alaska, Nulavik to Demarcation Point, August 7-10, 2006

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibbs, Ann E.; Richmond, Bruce M.

    2009-01-01

    The Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska, an area of strategic economic importance to the United States, is home to remote Native American communities and encompasses unique habitats of global significance. Coastal erosion along the Arctic coast is chronic and widespread; recent evidence suggests that erosion rates are among the highest in the world (up to ~16 m/yr) and may be accelerating. Coastal erosion adversely impacts energy-related infrastructure, natural shoreline habitats, and Native American communities. Climate change is thought to be a key component of recent environmental changes in the Arctic. Reduced sea-ice cover in the Arctic Ocean is one of the probable mechanisms responsible for increasing coastal exposure to wave attack and the resulting increase in erosion. Extended periods of permafrost melting and associated decrease in bluff cohesion and stability are another possible source of the increase in erosion. Several studies of selected areas on the Alaska coast document past shoreline positions and coastal change, but none have examined the entire North coast systematically. Results from these studies indicate high rates of coastal retreat that vary spatially along the coast. To address the need for a comprehensive and regionally consistent evaluation of shoreline change along the North coast of Alaska, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), as part of their Coastal and Marine Geology Program's (CMGP) National Assessment of Shoreline Change Study, is evaluating shoreline change from Peard Bay to the United States/Canadian border, using historical maps and photography and a standardized methodology that is consistent with other shoreline-change studies along the Nation's coastlines (for example, URL http://coastal.er.usgs.gov/shoreline-change/ (last accessed March 2, 2009). This report contains photographs collected during an aerial-reconnaissance survey conducted in support of this study. An accompanying ESRI ArcGIS shape file (and plain-text copy

  7. Oblique Aerial Photography of the Arctic Coast of Alaska, Cape Sabine to Milne Point, July 16-19, 2009

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibbs, Ann E.; Richmond, Bruce M.

    2010-01-01

    The Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska, an area of strategic economic importance to the United States, is home to remote Native American communities and encompasses unique habitats of global significance. Coastal erosion along the Arctic coast is chronic and widespread; recent evidence suggests that erosion rates are among the highest in the world (as high as ~16 m/yr) and may be accelerating. Coastal erosion adversely impacts energy-related infrastructure, natural shoreline habitats, and Native American communities. Climate change is thought to be a key component of recent environmental changes in the Arctic. Reduced sea-ice cover in the Arctic Ocean is one of the probable mechanisms responsible for increasing coastal exposure to wave attack and the resulting increase in erosion. Extended periods of permafrost melting and associated decreases in bluff cohesion and stability are another possible source of the increase in erosion. Several studies of selected areas on the Alaska coast document past shoreline positions and coastal change, but none have examined the entire North coast systematically. Results from these studies indicate high rates of coastal retreat that vary spatially along the coast. To address the need for a comprehensive and regionally consistent evaluation of shoreline change along the North coast of Alaska, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), as part of their Coastal and Marine Geology Program's (CMGP) National Assessment of Shoreline Change Study, is evaluating shoreline change from Peard Bay to the United States/Canadian border, using historical maps and photography and a standardized methodology that is consistent with other shoreline-change studies along the Nation's coastlines (see, for example, http://coastal.er.usgs.gov/shoreline-change/, last accessed February 12, 2010). This is the second in a series of publications containing photographs collected during reconnaissance surveys conducted in support of the National Assessment of

  8. Evidence and implications of recent climate change in northern Alaska and other arctic regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larry D. Hinzman; Neil D. Bettez; W. Robert Bolton; F. Stuart Chapin; Mark B. Dyurgerov; Chris L. Fastie; Brad Griffith; Robert D. Hollister; Allen Hope; Henry P. Huntington; Anne M. Jensen; Gensuou J. Jia; Torre Jorgenson; Douglas L. Kane; David R. Klein; Gary Kofinas; Amanda H. Lynch; Andrea H. Lloyd; A. David McGuire; Frederick E. Nelson; Walter C. Oechel; Thomas E. Osterkamp; Charles H. Racine; Vladimir E. Romanovsky; Robert S. Stone; Douglas A. Stow; Matthew Sturm; Craig E. Tweedie; George L. Vourlitis; Marilyn D. Walker; Donald A. Walker; Patrick J. Webber; Jeffrey M. Welker; Kevin S. Winker; Kenji. Yoshikawa

    2005-01-01

    The Arctic climate is changing. Permafrost is warming, hydrological processes are changing and biological and social systems are also evolving in response to these changing conditions. Knowing how the structure and function of arctic terrestrial ecosystems are responding to recent and persistent climate change is paramount to understanding the future state of the Earth...

  9. Aboveground and belowground responses to nutrient additions and herbivore exclusion in Arctic tundra ecosystems in northern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, J. C.; Gough, L.; Simpson, R.; Johnson, D. R.

    2011-12-01

    The Arctic has experienced significant increased regional warming over the past 30 years. Warming generally increases tundra soil nutrient availability by creating a more favorable environment for plant growth, decomposition and nutrient mineralization. Aboveground there has been a "greening" of the Arctic with increased net primary productivity (NPP), and an increase in woody vegetation. Concurrent with the changes aboveground has been an increase in root growth at lower depths and a loss of soil organic C (40 -100 g C m-2 yr-1). Given that arctic soils contain 14% of the global soil C pool, understanding the mechanisms behind shifts of this magnitude that are changing arctic soils from a net sink to a net source of atmospheric C is critical. We took an integrated multi-trophic level approach to examine how altering soil nutrients and mammalian herbivore activity affects vegetation, soil fauna, and microbial communities as well as soil physical characteristics in moist acidic (MAT) and dry heath (DH) tundra. Our work was conducted at the Arctic LTER site in northern Alaska. We sampled the nutrient (controls and annual N+P additions) and herbivore (controls and exclosures) manipulations established in 1996 after 10 years of treatment. Models that incorporated the biomass estimates from the field were used to characterize the trophic structure of the belowground food web and to estimate carbon flux among soil organisms and C-mineralization rates. Both MAT and DH exhibited significant increases in NPP and root growth and changes in vegetation structure with transitions from a mixed community to deciduous shrubs in MAT and from lichens to grasses and shrubs in DH, with nutrient additions and herbivore exclosures. Belowground responses to the treatments were dependent on ecosystem type, but exposed alterations in trophic structure that included changes in microbial biomass, the establishment of microbivorous enchytreaids, increases in root-feeding nematodes, and

  10. Pre-ABoVE: Arctic Vegetation Plots near Spine Road, Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, 2014

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This dataset provides environmental, soil, and vegetation data collected from study plots in the vicinity of Lake Colleen off the Spine Road at Prudhoe Bay, Alaska,...

  11. Pre-ABoVE: Arctic Vegetation Plots at Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, 1973-1980

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set provides environmental, soil, and vegetation data collected between 1973 and 1980 from 89 study plots in the Prudhoe Bay region of Alaska. Data...

  12. Arctic Tundra Flux Study in the Kuparuk River Basin (Alaska), 1994-1996

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — ABSTRACT: CO2 and water vapor fluxes and ecosystem characteristics were measured at 24 sites along a 317-km transect from the Arctic coast to the latitudinal...

  13. Arctic Tundra Flux Study in the Kuparuk River Basin (Alaska), 1994-1996

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — CO2 and water vapor fluxes and ecosystem characteristics were measured at 24 sites along a 317-km transect from the Arctic coast to the latitudinal treeline in...

  14. Pre-ABoVE: Arctic Vegetation Plots, Frost Boil Sites, North Slope, Alaska, 2000-2006

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set describes the environment, soil, and vegetation on nonsorted circles and earth hummocks at seven study sites along a N-S-transect from the Arctic Ocean...

  15. Arctic Alaska and Icebreaking: An Assessment of Future Requirements for the United States Coast Guard.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1981-03-01

    tanker: 1200 feet in length, 371,000 dwt, 210,000 SHP and an 80-foot draft. Such a ship would be 88 capable of year-round operation from Unimak Pass...Strait- Unimak Pass transportation corridor is a real possibility. An overview of Canadian arctic developments provides the following outlook: --in view of...Route Canadian Defense & Sovece ignty Concerns Northwest Bering Sea- passage Unimak Pass Sov iet Arctic Movements US Sovereiqnty National Security

  16. Microbial community structure and soil pH correspond to methane production in Arctic Alaska soils.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, Robert; Zona, Donatella; Oechel, Walter; Lipson, David

    2017-08-01

    While there is no doubt that biogenic methane production in the Arctic is an important aspect of global methane emissions, the relative roles of microbial community characteristics and soil environmental conditions in controlling Arctic methane emissions remains uncertain. Here, relevant methane-cycling microbial groups were investigated at two remote Arctic sites with respect to soil potential methane production (PMP). Percent abundances of methanogens and iron-reducing bacteria correlated with increased PMP, while methanotrophs correlated with decreased PMP. Interestingly, α-diversity of the methanogens was positively correlated with PMP, while β-diversity was unrelated to PMP. The β-diversity of the entire microbial community, however, was related to PMP. Shannon diversity was a better correlate of PMP than Simpson diversity across analyses, while rarefied species richness was a weak correlate of PMP. These results demonstrate the following: first, soil pH and microbial community structure both probably control methane production in Arctic soils. Second, there may be high functional redundancy in the methanogens with regard to methane production. Third, iron-reducing bacteria co-occur with methanogens in Arctic soils, and iron-reduction-mediated effects on methanogenesis may be controlled by α- and β-diversity. And finally, species evenness and rare species abundances may be driving relationships between microbial groups, influencing Arctic methane production. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Drainage network structure and hydrologic behavior of three lake-rich watersheds on the Arctic Coastal Plain, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arp, C.D.; Whitman, M.S.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Kemnitz, R.; Grosse, G.; Urban, F.E.

    2012-01-01

    Watersheds draining the Arctic Coastal Plain (ACP) of Alaska are dominated by permafrost and snowmelt runoff that create abundant surface storage in the form of lakes, wetlands, and beaded streams. These surface water elements compose complex drainage networks that affect aquatic ecosystem connectivity and hydrologic behavior. The 4676 km2 Fish Creek drainage basin is composed of three watersheds that represent a gradient of the ACP landscape with varying extents of eolian, lacustrine, and fluvial landforms. In each watershed, we analyzed 2.5-m-resolution aerial photography, a 5-m digital elevation model, and river gauging and climate records to better understand ACP watershed structure and processes. We show that connected lakes accounted for 19 to 26% of drainage density among watersheds and most all channels initiate from lake basins in the form of beaded streams. Of the > 2500 lakes in these watersheds, 33% have perennial streamflow connectivity, and these represent 66% of total lake area extent. Deeper lakes with over-wintering habitat were more abundant in the watershed with eolian sand deposits, while the watershed with marine silt deposits contained a greater extent of beaded streams and shallow thermokarst lakes that provide essential summer feeding habitat. Comparison of flow regimes among watersheds showed that higher lake extent and lower drained lake-basin extent corresponded with lower snowmelt and higher baseflow runoff. Variation in baseflow runoff among watersheds was most pronounced during drought conditions in 2007 with corresponding reduction in snowmelt peak flows the following year. Comparison with other Arctic watersheds indicates that lake area extent corresponds to slower recession of both snowmelt and baseflow runoff. These analyses help refine our understanding of how Arctic watersheds are structured and function hydrologically, emphasizing the important role of lake basins and suggesting how future lake change may impact hydrologic

  18. Intermittent Flooding of Arctic Lagoon Wet Sedge Areas: an investigation of past and future conditions at Arey Lagoon, Eastern Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibbs, A.; Erikson, L. H.; Richmond, B. M.

    2017-12-01

    Arctic lagoons and mainland coasts support highly productive ecosystems, where soft substrate and coastal wet sedge fringing the shores act as feeding grounds and nurseries for a variety of marine fish and waterfowl. Much tundra vegetation is intolerant to saltwater flooding, but some vegetation cherished by geese for example, is maintained by flooding one to two times per month. The balance of northern ecosystems such as these may be in jeopardy as the Arctic climate is rapidly changing. In this study, sea level rise and 21st century storms are simulated with a numerical model to evaluate changes in ocean-driven flooding of low-lying tundra and coastal wet sedge that fringe the shores of Arey Lagoon, located in eastern Arctic Alaska. Numerically modeled extreme surge levels are projected to increase from a historical range of 0.5 m - 1.3 m (1976-2010) to 1.0 m - 2.0 m by end-of-century (2011-2100). The maximum storm surge of the projected time-period translates to > 6 km2 of flooded tundra, much of which consists of salt-intolerant vegetation. Monthly flood extents that might be expected to maintain halophytic vegetation were calculated by extracting the maximum monthly water levels of months that had more than 21 days ( 70%) of ice-free conditions. Median monthly water levels are shown to range from 0.46 m in 1981-1990 to 0.91 m by the final decades of the 21st century. The temporal trend is strongly linear (r2 = 0.82). An overlay of these water elevations onto a 10 m resolution elevation model shows that monthly flood extents will increase by 26% by the end of the century compared to the present decade (2011 to 2020) (from 2.86 km2 to 3.60 km2). The rate at which the flood extents are projected to increase will dictate if inland succession of salt-tolerant vegetation will survive. By combining the frequency and magnitude of extreme storm surge events with the progression of modeled monthly inland flood extents, it might be possible to identify areas along this

  19. Arctic sea ice decline contributes to thinning lake ice trend in northern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexeev, Vladimir; Arp, Christopher D.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Cai, Lei

    2016-01-01

    Field measurements, satellite observations, and models document a thinning trend in seasonal Arctic lake ice growth, causing a shift from bedfast to floating ice conditions. September sea ice concentrations in the Arctic Ocean since 1991 correlate well (r = +0.69,p Research and Forecasting model output produced a 7% decrease in lake ice growth when 2007/08 sea ice was imposed on 1991/92 climatology and a 9% increase in lake ice growth for the opposing experiment. Here, we clearly link early winter 'ocean-effect' snowfall and warming to reduced lake ice growth. Future reductions in sea ice extent will alter hydrological, biogeochemical, and habitat functioning of Arctic lakes and cause sub-lake permafrost thaw.

  20. Morphological and molecular characterization of Sarcocystis arctica-like sarcocysts from the Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) from Alaska, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cerqueira-Cézar, Camila K.; Thompson, Peter C.; Verma, Shiv K.; Mowery, Joseph; Calero-Bernal, Rafael; Antunes Murata, Fernando H.; Sinnett, David R.; Van Hemert, Caroline R.; Rosenthal, Benjamin M.; Dubey, Jitender P.

    2017-01-01

    The muscles of herbivores commonly harbor sarcocysts of parasites belonging to species in the genus Sarcocystis, but such muscle parasites are rare in carnivores. Here, we report Sarcocystis arctica-like sarcocysts in muscles of Arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) from Alaska, USA, for the first time. The tongues of 56 foxes were examined for Sarcocystis infection using several methods. Sarcocystis bradyzoites were detected in pepsin digests of 13 (23.2%), and sarcocysts were found in histological sections stained with hematoxylin and eosin (HE) of 9 (16.0%). By light microscopy, sarcocysts were up to 4 mm long and up to 245 μm wide. In HE-stained sections, the sarcocyst wall appeared smooth and up to 1.5 μm thick without visible protrusions. By transmission electron microscopy, the sarcocyst wall had a wavy parasitophorous vacuolar membrane (pvm) folded as pleomorphic villar protrusions (vp), sometimes with anastomoses of villar tips. The vp and the ground substance (gs) layer were smooth and without microtubules. The gs was up to 2.0 μm thick. The total width of the wall including vp and the gs was up to 4.0 μm. The vp were up to 3.0 μm long and most closely resembled “type 9c.” All sarcocysts were mature and contained numerous 8.1 × 2.1 μm sized bradyzoites. Molecular characterization (at 18S rDNA, 28S rDNA, ITS-1, and cox1) showed the highest affinity for S. arctica of the Arctic fox (V. lagopus) from Norway. In the present investigation, we provide evidence that sarcocysts are common in tongues of Alaskan Arctic foxes suggesting that these carnivores are serving as intermediate hosts, and we also provide ultrastructure of S. arctica from the Arctic fox for the first time.

  1. Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapin, F. Stuart; Trainor, Sarah F.; Cochran, Patricia; Huntington, Henry; Markon, Carl J.; McCammon, Molly; McGuire, A. David; Serreze, Mark; Melillo, J.M.; Richmond, Terese; Yohe, G.W.

    2014-01-01

    Key Messages Arctic summer sea ice is receding faster than previously projected and is expected to virtually disappear before mid-century. This is altering marine ecosystems and leading to greater ship access, offshore development opportunity, and increased community vulnerability to coastal erosion.

  2. Patterns and controls of mercury accumulation in sediments from three thermokarst lakes on the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burke, Samantha M.; Zimmerman, Christian E.; Branfireun, Brian A.; Koch, Joshua C.; Swanson, Heidi K.

    2018-01-01

    The biogeochemical cycle of mercury will be influenced by climate change, particularly at higher latitudes. Investigations of historical mercury accumulation in lake sediments inform future predictions as to how climate change might affect mercury biogeochemistry; however, in regions with a paucity of data, such as the thermokarst-rich Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska (ACP), the trajectory of mercury accumulation in lake sediments is particularly uncertain. Sediment cores from three thermokarst lakes on the ACP were analyzed to understand changes in, and drivers of, Hg accumulation over the past ~ 100 years. Mercury accumulation in two of the three lakes was variable and high over the past century (91.96 and 78.6 µg/m2/year), and largely controlled by sedimentation rate. Mercury accumulation in the third lake was lower (14.2 µg/m2/year), more temporally uniform, and was more strongly related to sediment Hg concentration than sedimentation rate. Sediment mercury concentrations were quantitatively related to measures of sediment composition and VRS-inferred chlorophyll a, and sedimentation rates were related to various catchment characteristics. These results were compared to data from 37 previously studied Arctic and Alaskan lakes. Results from the meta-analysis indicate that thermokarst lakes have significantly higher and more variable Hg accumulation rates than non-thermokarst lakes, suggesting that certain properties (e.g., thermal erosion, thaw slumping, low hydraulic conductivity) likely make lakes prone to high and variable Hg accumulation rates. Differences and high variability in Hg accumulation among high latitude lakes highlight the complexity of predicting future climate-related change impacts on mercury cycling in these environments.

  3. Springtime Flood Risk Reduction in Rural Arctic: A Comparative Study of Interior Alaska, United States and Central Yakutia, Russia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yekaterina Y. Kontar

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Every spring, riverine communities throughout the Arctic face flood risk. As the river ice begins to thaw and break up, ice jams—accumulation of chunks and sheets of ice in the river channel, force melt water and ice floes to back up for dozens of kilometers and flood vulnerable communities upstream. Via a comparative analysis between two flood-prone communities in Alaska and Yakutia (Siberia, this study examines key components of flood risk—hazards, exposure, and vulnerability, and existing practices in flood risk reduction in rural Arctic. The research sites are two rural communities—Galena (Yukon River and Edeytsy (Lena River, which sustained major ice-jam floods in May 2013. The data was acquired through a combination of direct observations on site, review of documents and archives, focus group discussions, and surveys. Five focus groups with US and Russian representatives from disaster management agencies revealed a few similar patterns as well as significant differences in flood risk reduction strategies. The main differences included higher reliance on mechanical and short-term ice jam and flood mitigation efforts (e.g., ice-jam demolition in the Russian Arctic, and lack of a centralized flood management model in the US. Surveys conducted among population at risk during the site visits to Edeytsy (November 2015 and Galena (March 2016 revealed higher satisfaction levels with the existing flood risk reduction efforts among Edeytsy residents. Survey respondents in Galena indicated the lack of ice jam removal and other flood prevention measures as the key drawback in the existing flood management. Historical analysis, conducted via the disaster Pressure and Release (PAR model, revealed that springtime flood risk in both regions results from complex interactions among a series of natural processes that generate conditions of hazard, and human actions that generate conditions of communities’ exposure and vulnerability. The analysis

  4. Neisseria arctica sp. nov. isolated from nonviable eggs of greater white-fronted geese (Anser albifrons) in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, Cristina M.; Himschoot, Elizabeth; Hare, Rebekah F.; Meixell, Brandt; Van Hemert, Caroline R.; Hueffer, Karsten

    2017-01-01

    During the summers of 2013 and 2014, isolates of a novel Gram-negative coccus in the Neisseria genus were obtained from the contents of nonviable greater white-fronted goose (Anser albifrons) eggs on the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska. We used a polyphasic approach to determine whether these isolates represent a novel species. 16S rRNA gene sequences, 23S rRNA gene sequences, and chaperonin 60 gene sequences suggested that these Alaskan isolates are members of a distinct species that is most closely related to Neisseria canis, N. animaloris, and N. shayeganii. Analysis of the rplF gene additionally showed that our isolates are unique and most closely related to N. weaveri. Average nucleotide identity of the whole genome sequence of our type strain was between 71.5% and 74.6% compared to close relatives, further supporting designation as a novel species. Fatty acid methyl ester analysis showed a predominance of C14:0, C16:0, and C16:1ω7c fatty acids. Finally, biochemical characteristics distinguished our isolates from other Neisseria species. The name Neisseria arctica (type strain KH1503T = ATCC TSD-57T = DSM 103136T) is proposed.

  5. An integrated quantitative basin analysis study of the northern part of the Arctic national Wildlife Refuge, Northeastern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Z.; Lerche, Ian

    1992-06-01

    An integrated basin analysis was conducted using one- and two-dimensional quantitative dynamic models (1-D and 2-D) in the northern part of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), Northeastern Alaska. Exploratory well data have been used in the reconstructions of: (1) geohistory including basement subsidence, sediment deposition, change of porosity and compaction, permeability, fluid pressure and fluid flow with time and depth; (2) thermal history including heat flux evolution with time, temperature change with time and depth, and thermal maturation history; and (3) hydrocarbon generation history including the change in the amount of hydrocarbons generated with time and depth, and determining the time and depth of peak hydrocarbon generation. 1-D and 2-D basin modeling codes were used with selected wells, and also with a 18 km section, west of ANWR, with five well controls. It is concluded that: (1) the main source rock west of ANWR area matured first about 40-30 Ma ago in the south and gradually to the north about 10-8 Ma ago on the coastal plain; (2) the modeled erosion thickness at Beli Unit-1 location, northeastern Brooks Range, was 1500-3000 m and at least 3000 m at Canning River Unit B-1; and (3) an overpressure zone within the Hue shale and the lowest part of the Canning Formation caused by rapid Tertiary deposition retained porosity, increased the temperature and speeded hydrocarbon generation in the lower part of the coastal plain.

  6. Concentrations and interactions of selected essential and non-essential elements in ringed seals and polar bears of arctic Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woshner, V M; O'Hara, T M; Bratton, G R; Beasley, V R

    2001-10-01

    In this study, we evaluated concentrations of twelve essential and non-essential elements (As, Cd, Co, Cu, Pb, Mg, Mn, Hg, Mo, Se, Ag, and Zn) in tissues of ringed seals (Phoca hispida) and polar bears (Ursus maritimus) of arctic Alaska (USA). All samples were collected between 1995-97 in conjunction with subsistence harvests. The essential elements are reported to help develop reference ranges for health status determination and to help assess known or suspected interactions affecting toxicoses of cadmium (Cd) and mercury (Hg). In some tissues, Cd, Hg, and selenium (Se) were present at concentrations that have been associated with toxicoses in some domestic animals. Nevertheless, tissue levels of all elements were within ranges that have been reported previously in other pinnipeds and polar bears. Significant associations included: Cd with Zn or Cu; Cu with Zn or Ag; and Hg with Se, Zn, or Cu. This study found hepatic Hg:Se molar ratios to be lower than unity and different between the two species. Based upon significant differences in mean tissue elemental concentrations for polar bear versus ringed seal, we concluded that biomagnification factors (bear/seal) were significant for: Cu in liver and muscle; Pb in kidney; Se in kidney and muscle; Zn in liver and muscle; and Hg in liver. Possible explanations for observed elemental correlations (i.e., interactions) and ancillary mechanisms of Cd and Hg detoxification are discussed.

  7. Distribution of branched GDGTs in surface sediments from the Colville River, Alaska: Implications for the MBT'/CBT paleothermometer in Arctic marine sediments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanna, Andrea J. M.; Shanahan, Timothy M.; Allison, Mead A.

    2016-07-01

    Significant climate fluctuations in the Arctic over the recent past, and additional predicted future temperature changes, highlight the need for high-resolution Arctic paleoclimate records. Arctic coastal environments supplied with terrigenous sediment from Arctic rivers have the potential to provide annual to subdecadal resolution records of climate variability over the last few millennia. A potential tool for paleotemperature reconstructions in these marine sediments is the revised methylation index of branched tetraethers (MBT')/cyclization ratio of branched tetraethers (CBT) proxy based on branched glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (brGDGTs). In this study, we examine the source of brGDGTs in the Colville River, Alaska, and the adjacent Simpson Lagoon and reconstruct temperatures from Simpson Lagoon sediments to evaluate the applicability of this proxy in Arctic estuarine environments. The Colville catchment soils, fluvial sediments, and estuarine sediments contain statistically similar brGDGT distributions, indicating that the brGDGTs throughout the system are soil derived with little alteration from in situ brGDGT production in the river or coastal waters. Temperatures reconstructed from the MBT'/CBT indices for surface samples show good agreement with regional summer (June through September) temperatures, suggesting a seasonal bias in Arctic temperature reconstructions from the Colville system. In addition, we reconstruct paleotemperatures from an estuarine sediment core that spans the last 75 years, revealing an overall warming trend in the twentieth century that is consistent with trends observed in regional instrumental records. These results support the application of this brGDGT-based paleotemperature proxy for subdecadal-scale summer temperature reconstructions in Arctic estuaries containing organic material derived from sediment-laden, episodic rivers.

  8. Arctic passages: liminality, Iñupiat Eskimo mothers and NW Alaska communities in transition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lisa Llewellyn Schwarzburg

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Background. While the primary goal of the NW Alaska Native maternal transport is safe deliveries for mothers from remote villages, little has been done to question the impact of transport on the mothers and communities involved. This study explores how presence of Iñupiat values influences the desire of indigenous women of differing eras and NW Alaska villages to participate in biomedical birth, largely made available by a tribal health-sponsored transport system. Objective. This paper portrays how important it is (and why for Alaska Native families and women of different generations from various areas of Iñupiat villages of NW Alaska to get to the hospital to give birth. This research asks: How does a community’s presence of Iñupiat values influence women of different eras and locations to participate in a more biomedical mode of birth? Design. Theoretical frameworks of medical anthropology and maternal identity work are used to track the differences in regard to the maternal transport operation for Iñupiat mothers of the area. Presence of Iñupiat values in each of the communities is compared by birth era and location for each village. Content analysis is conducted to determine common themes in an inductive, recursive fashion. Results. A connection is shown between a community’s manifestation of Iñupiat cultural expression and mothers’ acceptance of maternal transport in this study. For this group of Iñupiat Eskimo mothers, there is interplay between community expression of Iñupiat values and desire and lengths gone to by women of different eras and locations. Conclusions. The more openly manifested the Iñupiat values of the community, the more likely alternative birthing practices sought, lessening the reliance on the existing transport policy. Conversely, the more openly western values are manifested in the village of origin, the less likely alternative measures are sought. For this study group, mothers from study villages with

  9. Disappearing Arctic Tundra Ponds: Assessing 60 Years of Change in the Barrow Peninsula, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andresen, C.; Lougheed, V.

    2012-12-01

    Decadal hydrological changes of closed-basin tundra ponds in continuous permafrost fills a missing gap in arctic fresh water research. Furthermore, the lack of historic datasets and high resolution historical imagery adds to the challenge of understanding the long-term trends of these ecosystems. Given the dominance of these aquatic ecosystems in the Arctic landscape, documenting hydrological changes is important to understand carbon and energy balance, trophic energy flow, and biodiversity. We utilized historic aerial imagery from USGS archives of 1948 and modern high-resolution Quickbird imagery from 2008 to assess areal changes in arctic ponds over the past 60 years. Object-oriented classification was used to extract the areal extent of ponds and validated using a combination of ground-based measurements such as Kite Aerial Photography (KAP) and Differential Geographic Positioning System (DGPS). A total of 1120 ponds in different drained thaw lake basins (DTLB) distributed across the Barrow Peninsula were assessed. Analysis indicated a decline in total pond area and a decrease of 36% in the number of ponds, with change more pronounced in smaller ponds (plant cover data collected over a 40 year period (1970-2012) indicate that expansion of vegetation into the ponds may be a primary mechanism whereby ponds may experience infilling. Other mechanisms may include increased evaporation due to warmer and longer summers, transpiration from encroaching aquatic grasses and changes in precipitation patterns. However, images from additional years will be analyzed to separate out the roles of these variables on inter- versus intra-annual variability in pond surface area.

  10. Temperature response of respiration across heterogeneous microtopography in the Arctic tundra, Utqiaġvik, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkman, E.; Zona, D.; Tang, Y.; Gioli, B.; Lipson, D.; Oechel, W. C.

    2017-12-01

    The response of ecosystem respiration to warming in the Arctic is not well constrained, partly due to the presence of ice-wedge polygons in continuous permafrost areas. These formations lead to substantial variation in vegetation, soil moisture, water table, and active layer depth over the meter scale that can drive respiratory carbon loss. Accurate calculations of in-situ temperature sensitivities (Q10) are vital for the prediction of future Arctic emissions, and while the eddy covariance technique has commonly been used to determine the diurnal and season patterns of net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2, the lack of suitable dark periods in the Arctic summer has limited our ability to estimate and interpret ecosystem respiration. To therefore improve our understanding of and define controls on ecosystem respiration, we directly compared CO2 fluxes measured from automated chambers across the main local polygonised landscape forms (high and low centers, polygon rims, and polygon troughs) to estimates from an adjacent eddy covariance tower. Low-centered polygons and polygon troughs had the greatest cumulative respiration rates, and ecosystem type appeared to be the most important explanatory variable for these rates. Despite the difference in absolute respiration rates, Q10 was surprisingly similar across all microtopographic features, despite contrasting water levels and vegetation types. Conversely, Q10 varied temporally, with higher values during the early and late summer and lower values during the peak growing season. Finally, good agreement was found between chamber and tower based Q10 estimates during the peak growing season. Overall, this study suggests that it is possible to simplify estimates of the temperature sensitivity of respiration across heterogeneous landscapes, but that seasonal changes in Q10 should be incorporated into current and future model simulations.

  11. Bridging the Scientific and Indigenous Communities to Study Sea Ice Change in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahoney, A. R.; Zappa, C. J.; Betcher, S. R.; Hauser, D.; Whiting, A.; Goodwin, J.; Harris, C.; Schaefer, B.; Schaefer, R.

    2017-12-01

    Ikaavik Sikukuun (Ice Bridges) is a newly-launched research partnership in Kotzebue, Alaska, that adopts an end-to-end community-based approach to study fundamental processes underlying the mechanisms and impacts of the changing sea ice in coastal Alaska. Under guidance from a local advisory council, we will use state-of-the-art observing techniques including long-range unmanned aerial systems (UAS) to study under-observed sea ice regions during critical periods of marine mammal migration, molting and reproduction. Here, we describe what, to the best of our knowledge, is a precedent-setting approach to co-creating research questions and hypotheses that integrate indigenous knowledge (IK) and interdisciplinary scientific methods. A key element of this approach is that we established an advisory committee of local IK holders before defining specific research questions. This has enabled us to iteratively develop hypotheses that incorporate IK and respond to the research needs of the local community while also addressing key geophysical and ecological questions related to changes in the seasonal ice zone. The advisory committee will be key participants in the project team, ensuring that IK is incorporated into the design of the observing plan and the synthesis and dissemination of findings. In addition to building bridges between the scientific community and indigenous residents of Kotzebue, the legacy of our project will include a video documentary that will allow us to share the story of this partnership and our findings with a broad audience.

  12. Increase in the rate and uniformity of coastline erosion in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Benjamin M.; Arp, C.D.; Jorgenson, M.T.; Hinkel, Kenneth M.; Schmutz, J.A.; Flint, P.L.

    2009-01-01

    Analysis of a 60 km segment of the Alaskan Beaufort Sea coast using a time-series of aerial photography revealed that mean annual erosion rates increased from 6.8 m a-1 (1955 to 1979), to 8.7 m a-1 (1979 to 2002), to 13.6 m a-1 (2002 to 2007). We also observed that spatial patterns of erosion have become more uniform across shoreline types with different degrees of ice-richness. Further, during the remainder of the 2007 ice-free season 25 m of erosion occurred locally, in the absence of a westerly storm event. Concurrent arctic changes potentially responsible for this shift in the rate and pattern of land loss include declining sea ice extent, increasing summertime sea surface temperature, rising sea-level, and increases in storm power and corresponding wave action. Taken together, these factors may be leading to a new regime of ocean-land interactions that are repositioning and reshaping the Arctic coastline. Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.

  13. Polar Gateways Arctic Circle Sunrise Conference 2008, Barrow, Alaska: IHY-IPY Outreach on Exploration of Polar and Icy Worlds in The Solar System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, John F.; Kauristie, K.; Weatherwax, A. T.; Sheehan, G. W.; Smith, R. W.; Sandahl, I.; Østgaard, N.; Chernouss, S.; Moore, M. H.; Peticolas, L. M.; Senske, D. A.; Thompson, B. J.; Tamppari, L. K.; Lewis, E. M.

    2008-09-01

    Polar, heliophysical, and planetary science topics related to the International Heliophysical and Polar Years 2007-2009 were addressed during this circumpolar video conference hosted January 23-29, 2008 at the new Barrow Arctic Research Center of the Barrow Arctic Science Consortium in Barrow, Alaska. This conference was planned as an IHY-IPY event science outreach event bringing together scientists and educational specialists for the first week of sunrise at subzero Arctic temperatures in Barrow. Science presentations spanned the solar system from the polar Sun to Earth, Moon, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, and the Kuiper Belt. On-site participants experienced look and feel of icy worlds like Europa and Titan by being in the Barrow tundra and sea ice environment and by going "on the ice" during snowmobile expeditions to the near-shore sea ice environment and to Point Barrow, closest geographic point in the U.S. to the North Pole. Many science presentations were made remotely via video conference or teleconference from Sweden, Norway, Russia, Canada, Antarctica, and the United States, spanning up to thirteen time zones (Alaska to Russia) at various times. Extensive educational outreach activities were conducted with the local Barrow and Alaska North Slope communities and through the NASA Digital Learning Network live from the "top of the world" at Barrow. The Sun-Earth Day team from Goddard, and a videographer from the Passport to Knowledge project, carried out extensive educational interviews with many participants and native Inupiaq Eskimo residents of Barrow. Video and podcast recordings of selected interviews are available at http://sunearthday.nasa.gov/2008/multimedia/podcasts.php. Excerpts from these and other interviews will be included in a new high definition video documentary called "From the Sun to the Stars: The New Science of Heliophysics" from Passport to Knowledge that will later broadcast on NASA TV and other educational networks. Full conference

  14. Current Magnitude and Mechanisms of Groundwater Discharge in the Arctic: Case Study from Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dimova, Natasha T; Paytan, Adina; Kessler, John D; Sparrow, Katy J; Garcia-Tigreros Kodovska, Fenix; Lecher, Alanna L; Murray, Joseph; Tulaczyk, Slawomir M

    2015-10-20

    To better understand groundwater-surface water dynamics in high latitude areas, we conducted a field study at three sites in Alaska with varying permafrost coverage. The natural groundwater tracer ((222)Rn, radon) was used to evaluate groundwater discharge, and electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) was used to examine subsurface mixing dynamics. Different controls govern groundwater discharge at these sites. In areas with sporadic permafrost (Kasitsna Bay), the major driver of submarine groundwater discharge is tidal pumping, due to the large tidal oscillations, whereas at Point Barrow, a site with continuous permafrost and small tidal amplitudes, fluxes are mostly affected by seasonal permafrost thawing. Extended areas of low resistivity in the subsurface alongshore combined with high radon in surface water suggests that groundwater-surface water interactions might enhance heat transport into deeper permafrost layers promoting permafrost thawing, thereby enhancing groundwater discharge.

  15. Differential Millennial-scale Responses of Terrestrial Carbon Cycling Dynamics to Warming from two Contrasting Lake Catchments in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longo, W. M.; Huang, Y.; Russell, J. M.; Giblin, A. E.; McNichol, A. P.; Xu, L.; Daniels, W.

    2016-12-01

    Earth's permafrost carbon (C) reservoir is more than twice as large as global atmospheric C and its vulnerability to warming makes it a significant potential feedback to climate change. Predicted rates of warming could result in the release of 5 to 15% of permafrost C to the atmosphere by 2100 (Schuur et al., 2015); however the uncertainty around this estimate hinders our ability to quantify the arctic temperature-carbon feedback. To elucidate the long-term response of terrestrial C to warming in regions underlain by continuous permafrost, we present geologic records of changes in temperature and terrestrial C cycling dynamics from sediment cores from two contrasting lake catchments in arctic Alaska. The sediment records feature independent chronologies, biomarker-based temperature reconstructions, and geochemical measurements of vascular plant biomarkers (lignin phenols) that provide insight into terrestrial carbon quality, its release from permafrost soils and its transit time on the landscape. Our results indicate that both abrupt and sustained increases in temperature over the past 20,000 years resulted in increased carbon normalized yields of lignin phenols (Λ8, Λ6), which indicate increased mobilization of terrestrial organic carbon from permafrost soils. Lignin phenol indicators of terrestrial carbon quality (Ad:Al(s), Ad:Al(v)), indicated that carbon quality decreased with increasing temperature. These results demonstrate covariation between temperature and both the decay of terrestrial organic matter and lignin alteration resulting from dissolution and sorption processes. Compound specific radiocarbon analyses of lignin phenols and their offsets from depositional ages quantify transit times of terrestrial carbon on the landscape. These measurements revealed the presence of a persistent "pre-aged" terrestrial organic carbon pool, which is likely sourced from degrading permafrost. We also observe different responses of terrestrial organic carbon cycling to

  16. Thermokarst Associations with Landscape Characteristics in Arctic Alaska: Implications for Future Permafrost Degradation at Landscape to Regional Scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Balser, A.; Jones, J. B.; Jorgenson, T.

    2010-12-01

    Permafrost degradation affects Arctic landscapes, and is controlled by myriad landscape characteristics. Thermokarst features can develop by catastrophic failure, gradual subsidence, or continual mass wasting and can be classified into discernible modes based upon mechanism, morphology and substrate characteristics. Relationships among landscape characteristics and several different modes of thermokarst provided strong predictors of regional scale thermokarst distribution. In the Brooks Range foothills of northern Alaska, several distinct modes of thermokarst predominated. Active-layer detachment slides were associated with 4-7° slopes, non-carbonate parent lithologies (particularly micaceous shale), ice-rich upper permafrost with >40 % segregation ice in a 20 cm horizon directly beneath the active layer, and non-tussock vegetation. Glacial thermokarst (including the central kettle lake and surrounding retrogressive thaw slumps), was confined to valley bottoms where glacial recession has deposited stagnate glacial ice typically insulated by ablation till, colluvial blankets, and peat. Thermo-erosional gullies occurred in landscapes that have substantial massive ice (typically wedges, although less commonly abundant segregated ice) and sustained surface water flow. Retrogressive thaw slumps not associated with buried glacial ice formed on 6-12° slopes with ice-rich permafrost containing >35 % visible segregated ice. These slumps occurred either on low hillslope positions along convex bluffs, or as secondary features extending uphill from pre-existing active-layer detachment slides. Observations indicate that thermokarst formation has three essential components: (1) sufficient volume of ground ice of varying morphologies; (2) a set of distinctive landscape conditions (e.g. surficial materials, slopes and gravitational energy, vegetation, and water flow); and (3) a triggering mechanism caused by unusual weather or a disturbance event, although glacial thermokarst

  17. The Climate Science Special Report: Arctic Changes and their Effect on Alaska and the Rest of the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, P. C.

    2017-12-01

    Rapid and visible climate change is happening across the Arctic, outpacing global change. Annual average near-surface air temperatures across the Arctic are increasing at more than twice the rate of global average surface temperature. In addition to surface temperature, all components of the Arctic climate system are responding in kind, including sea ice, mountain glaciers and the Greenland Ice sheet, snow cover, and permafrost. Many of these changes with a discernable anthropogenic imprint. While Arctic climate change may seem physically remote to those living in other regions of the planet, Arctic climate change can affect the global climate influencing sea level, the carbon cycle, and potentially atmospheric and oceanic circulation patterns. As an Arctic nation, United States' adaptation, mitigation, and policy decisions depend on projections of future Alaskan and Arctic climate. This chapter of the Climate Science Special Report documents significant scientific progress and knowledge about how the Alaskan and Arctic climate has changed and will continue to change.

  18. Forage site selection by lesser snow geese during autumn staging on the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hupp, Jerry W.; Robertson, Donna G.

    1998-01-01

    Lesser snow geese (Chen caerulescens caerulescens) of the Western Canadian Arctic Population feed intensively for 2-4 weeks on the coastal plain of the Beaufort Sea in Canada and Alaska at the beginning of their autumn migration. Petroleum leasing proposed for the Alaskan portion of the staging area on the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) could affect staging habitats and their use by geese. Therefore we studied availability, distribution, and use by snow geese of tall and russett cotton-grass (Eriophorum angustifolium and E. russeolum, respectively) feeding habitats on the ANWR. We studied selection of feeding habitats at 3 spatial scales (feeding sites [0.06 m2], feeding patches [ca. 100 m2], and feeding areas [>1 ha]) during 1990-93. We used logistic regression analysis to discriminate differences in soil moisture and vegetation between 1,548 feeding sites where snow geese exploited individual cotton-grass plants and 1,143 unexploited sites at 61 feeding patches in 1990. Feeding likelihood increased with greater soil moisture and decreased where nonforage species were present. We tested the logistic regression model in 1991 by releasing human-imprinted snow geese into 4 10 × 20-m enclosed plots where plant communities had been mapped, habitats sampled, and feeding probabilities calculated. Geese selected more feeding sites per square meter in areas of predicted high quality feeding habitat (feeding probability ≥ 0.6) than in medium (feeding probability = 0.3-0.59) or poor (feeding probability logistic regression model to estimate availability of high quality feeding sites on 192 80 × 90-m plots that were randomly located on 24 study areas. A mean of 1.6% of the area sampled in each plot was classified as high quality feeding habitat at 23 of the study areas. Relative availability of high quality sites was highest in troughs, thermokarst pits, and water tracks because saturated soils in those microreliefs were dominated by cotton-grass. Relative

  19. Survey of Permafrost Thaw Influence on Surface Water Dissolved Organic Matter in Sub-Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gagne, K.; Walter Anthony, K. M.; Guerard, J.

    2016-12-01

    The chemical and functional group composition of permafrost organic matter largely remains unknown. Characterizing dissolved organic matter (DOM) chemical composition offers insight into the quality and extent of the permafrost carbon pool that may mobilize and transform into smaller components or greenhouse gasses upon thaw. The Goldstream watershed in interior Alaska is underlain by discontinuous permafrost with varying stage of talik (thaw bulb) development, allowing for the comparison of thaw stage on DOM composition. Surface water samples were collected from lakes and streams in regions of the watershed with varying degrees of permafrost thaw in order to investigate seasonal variability and associated trends in DOM composition. Additionally, select permafrost cores were obtained and utilized in leachate experiments to identify the fraction and reactivity of the soil organic carbon pool leached from active layer and permafrost soil upon thaw. Leached organic moieties were compared to the total permafrost organic carbon pool and the DOM of the overlying surface water. Extracted isolates from both permafrost and active layer were characterized by 3D excitation-emission fluorescence, UV-vis spectroscopy, PARAFAC, SPR-W5-WATERGATE 1H- NMR, total organic carbon, ICP-MS, and ion chromatography, coupled with photolysis experiments to determine reactive oxygen species production to characterize potential reactivity. Differences in carbon pool composition were resolved between seasons and with the extent of permafrost thaw. This is a key first step to determine how permafrost degradation influences DOM pool composition on a molecular level, which is essential for assessing permafrost organic matter impact on biogeochemical cycling and other ecological functions as it becomes incorporated into a warming landscape.

  20. The Role of Explicitly Modeling Bryophytes in Simulating Carbon Exchange and Permafrost Dynamics of an Arctic Coastal Tundra at Barrow, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, F.; Thornton, P. E.; McGuire, A. D.; Oechel, W. C.; Yang, B.; Tweedie, C. E.; Rogers, A.; Norby, R. J.

    2013-12-01

    Bryophyte cover is greater than 50% in many Arctic tundra ecosystems. In regions of the Arctic where shrubs are expanding it is expected that bryophyte cover will be substantially reduced. Such a loss in cover could influence the hydrological, biogeochemical, and permafrost dynamics of Arctic tundra ecosystems. The explicit representation of bryophyte physiological and biophysical processes in large-scale ecological and land surface models is rare, and we hypothesize that the representation of bryophytes has consequences for estimates of the exchange of water, energy, and carbon by these models. This study explicitly represents the effects of bryophyte function and structure on the exchange of carbon (e.g., summer photosynthesis effects) and energy (e.g., summer insulation effects) with the atmosphere in the Community Land Model (CLM-CN). The modified model was evaluated for its ability to simulate C exchange, soil temperature, and soil moisture since the 1970s at Barrow, Alaska through comparison with data from AmeriFlux sites, USDA Soil Climate Networks observation sites at Barrow, and other sources. We also compare the outputs of the CLM-CN simulations with those of the recently developed Dynamical Organic Soil coupled Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (DOS-TEM). Overall, our evaluation indicates that bryophytes are important contributors to land-atmospheric C exchanges in Arctic tundra and that they play an important role to permafrost thermal and hydrological processes which are critical to permafrost stability. Our next step in this study is to examine the climate system effects of explicitly representing bryophyte dynamics in the land surface model. Key Words: Bryophytes, Arctic coastal tundra, Vegetation composition, Net Ecosystem Exchange, Permafrost, Land Surface Model, Terrestrial Ecosystem Model

  1. Multi-resolution Changes in the Spatial Extent of Perennial Arctic Alpine Snow and Ice Fields with Potential Archaeological Significance in the Central Brooks Range, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tedesche, M. E.; Freeburg, A. K.; Rasic, J. T.; Ciancibelli, C.; Fassnacht, S. R.

    2015-12-01

    Perennial snow and ice fields could be an important archaeological and paleoecological resource for Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve in the central Brooks Range mountains of Arctic Alaska. These features may have cultural significance, as prehistoric artifacts may be frozen within the snow and ice. Globally significant discoveries have been made recently as ancient artifacts and animal dung have been found in melting alpine snow and ice patches in the Southern Yukon and Northwest Territories in Canada, the Wrangell mountains in Alaska, as well as in other areas. These sites are melting rapidly, which results in quick decay of biological materials. The summer of 2015 saw historic lows in year round snow cover extent for most of Alaska. Twenty mid to high elevation sites, including eighteen perennial snow and ice fields, and two glaciers, were surveyed in July 2015 to quantify their areal extent. This survey was accomplished by using both low flying aircraft (helicopter), as well as with on the ground in-situ (by foot) measurements. By helicopter, visual surveys were conducted within tens of meters of the surface. Sites visited by foot were surveyed for extent of snow and ice coverage, melt water hydrologic parameters and chemistry, and initial estimates of depths and delineations between snow, firn, and ice. Imagery from both historic aerial photography and from 5m resolution IKONOS satellite information were correlated with the field data. Initial results indicate good agreement in permanent snow and ice cover between field surveyed data and the 1985 to 2011 Landsat imagery-based Northwest Alaska snow persistence map created by Macander et al. (2015). The most deviation between the Macander et al. model and the field surveyed results typically occurred as an overestimate of perennial extent on the steepest aspects. These differences are either a function of image classification or due to accelerated ablation rates in perennial snow and ice coverage

  2. A coupled approach to spatially derived parameters necessary for ecosystem modeling on the North Slope of Alaska: Appendix A. Final report, March 1, 1989--February 28, 1993

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Petersen, G.W.; Day, R.L.; Pollack, J. [Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park, PA (United States). Dept. of Agronomy

    1993-12-01

    This study concerned an investigation of ecosystem dynamics in several small study sites in the North Slope region of Alaska. The scope of the proposed research is to quantitatively determine spatial interrelationships between landform geometry within these study areas and such ecologically important factors as vegetation type, depth-to-permafrost, hydraulic conductivity and incoming solar radiation. Extrapolation techniques developed and terrain-related data generated as a result of this research will augment R4D Phase II goals which relate to running the General Arctic Simulac (GAS) model (and associated ecosystem models) at different locations on the North Slope. In particular, Penn State has contributed significantly to extrapolation efforts by developing techniques which can be used to initialize conditions for model input either through direct measurement (e.g., slope and aspect) and GIS-based simulation models (e.g., drainage basin characterization). As stated in the R4D Phase II Research Plan, the long-term objectives of this program are: (1) to determine effects and to develop models based on ecosystem disturbances commonly created by energy development so that appropriate, cost-effective measures can be utilized to minimize deleterious disturbances; and (2) to extend the results to other arctic and alpine areas which are important because of likely impact from energy development. It is this second long-term objective which relates most directly to Penn State`s work.

  3. Modeling the rate and style of Arctic coastal retreat along the Beaufort Sea, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnhart, K. R.; Anderson, R. S.; Overeem, I.; Wobus, C. W.; Clow, G. D.; Urban, F. E.; Stanton, T. P.

    2010-12-01

    In Arctic landscapes, modern surface warming has significantly altered geomorphic process rates. Along the Beaufort Sea coastline bounding Alaska’s North Slope, the mean annual coastal erosion rate has doubled from ~7 m/yr for 1955-1979 to ~14 m/yr for 2002-2007 (Mars and Houseknecht, 2007). Locally the erosion rate can reach 30 m/yr, with short-term rates that are far greater than this. A robust understanding of the processes that govern the rate of coastal erosion is required in order to predict the response of the coast and its adjacent landscape to a rapidly changing climate, with implications for sediment and carbon fluxes, oilfield infrastructure, and animal habitat. Constrained by time-lapse imagery, and by measurements of both the oceanic and atmospheric conditions, we have developed a numerical model to capture the evolution of the permafrost bluffs on the North Slope. During the sea ice-free season, relatively warm waters melt a notch into the ice-rich silt that comprises the 4-m tall bluffs. The bluffs ultimately fail by toppling of polygonal blocks bounded by mechanically weak ice-wedges that are spaced roughly 10-20 m apart. The toppled blocks then temporarily armor the coast against further attack. The annual retreat rate is controlled by the length of the sea ice-free season, water and air temperatures, and the wave history. Honoring the high ice content of the bluff materials, we employ a positive degree day algorithm to govern subaerial melt, and an iceberg melting algorithm to determine rate of notch incision. In the iceberg melting algorithm, the local instantaneous melt rate goes as the product of the temperature difference between seawater and bluff material, the sea state, captured by the ratio of wave height to wave period, and the ratio of ice surface roughness to wave height to the 0.2 power (Kubat et al., 2007). The calculated instantaneous melt rate is adjusted to account for the ambient temperature of the permafrost and the presence of

  4. Rapid Arctic change and implications for sea-ice use and its management at the local and regional level: An example from Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eicken, H.; Lovecraft, A. L.; Meek, C. L.; Druckenmiller, M. L.

    2008-12-01

    Reductions in sea-ice thickness and summer extent over the past few decades have been particularly pronounced in Alaska. This rapid environmental change coincides with significant socio-economic transformations, including increased ship traffic and offshore oil and gas development. Adaptation and response to these changes and regulation of coastal and offshore activities require environmental data and projections on seasonal to decadal timescales. Nascent Arctic observation networks are of great potential value in this context. However, in order for such observing and associated modeling activities to be useful, several criteria have to be met: (1) observations need to be relevant to stakeholders adapting or responding to a changing ice regime, (2) data products need to be accessible and interpretable by those they are meant to serve, and (3) institutions and governance strategies need to be in place to allow effective utilization of environmental data and information on changing ice conditions. We show how the concept of sea-ice system services can help guide observing programs, in particular in situations with conjoined uses of the ice cover. An example from our work in Arctic Alaska illustrates this concept for the use of sea ice as a platform by indigenous hunters, industry and marine mammals. Adaptive responses by different user groups to the substantial variability observed in local-scale ice conditions will require a significant effort in downscaling standard sea-ice data products and integrating new types of measurements. The challenge for ice-covered waters is that current approaches governing utilization of the sea-ice environment may not always be effective in addressing conjoined, potentially conflicting uses. The major transformations underway in the Arctic now provide us with an opportunity to explore and evaluate different approaches of observing, adapting and responding to change.

  5. Use of the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index to Assess Vegetative Nutritive Value in Halophytic Graminoid Habitat across Alaska's Arctic Coastal Plain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hogrefe, K. R.; Ward, D. H.; Budde, M. E.; Ruthrauff, D. R.; Hupp, J. W.

    2015-12-01

    Climate change will likely alter the seasonal nutrient abundance and general distribution of halophytic graminoid (salt marsh) habitat across the Arctic Coastal Plain. Halophytic graminoids are key forage for newly hatched Black Brant, Lesser Snow and Greater White-fronted Geese and the timing and degree of seasonal nutrient abundance in these plants is critical for gosling growth and survival. After 5 years of research (culminating in 2015) under the USGS Alaska Science Center's Changing Arctic Ecosystems Initiative, we found strong relationships between the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) and nutrient abundance (N g/m2) and availability (%N) in halophytic graminoid habitat. The relationships between NDVI and nutrient abundance and availability were strong whether using NDVI derived from high (spectrometer), moderate (WorldView-2 satellite) or low (eMODIS satellite) resolution data. Correlations established and validated at one location were used to predict nutrient abundance using NDVI readings from other locations, allowing interpretation of satellite derived NDVI in terms of nutrient abundance across broad areas of mapped salt marsh habitat. Further, NDVI seasonal timelines were used to predict the timing of peak nutrient availability using the period of most rapid increase in NDVI value. Currently, we are using WorldView-2 imagery to create vegetation maps of the central Arctic coastal zone (~20 km inland) of Alaska, covering approximately 1000 km of coastline, with a focus on identifying all salt marshes. Such maps will enable monitoring programs and allow for modeling to predict spatial and temporal changes in halophytic graminoid habitat and the nutrients available to geese in the early stages of life.

  6. Exclusion of brown lemmings reduces vascular plant cover and biomass in Arctic coastal tundra: resampling of a 50 + year herbivore exclosure experiment near Barrow, Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnson, D R; Lara, M J; Tweedie, C E; Shaver, G R; Batzli, G O; Shaw, J D

    2011-01-01

    To determine the role lemmings play in structuring plant communities and their contribution to the 'greening of the Arctic', we measured plant cover and biomass in 50 + year old lemming exclosures and control plots in the coastal tundra near Barrow, Alaska. The response of plant functional types to herbivore exclusion varied among land cover types. In general, the abundance of lichens and bryophytes increased with the exclusion of lemmings, whereas graminoids decreased, although the magnitude of these responses varied among land cover types. These results suggest that sustained lemming activity promotes a higher biomass of vascular plant functional types than would be expected without their presence and highlights the importance of considering herbivory when interpreting patterns of greening in the Arctic. In light of the rapid environmental change ongoing in the Arctic and the potential regional to global implications of this change, further exploration regarding the long-term influence of arvicoline rodents on ecosystem function (e.g. carbon and energy balance) should be considered a research priority.

  7. Source Characterization and Temporal Variation of Methane Seepage from Thermokarst Lakes on the Alaska North Slope in Response to Arctic Climate Change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    None, None

    2012-09-30

    The goals of this research were to characterize the source, magnitude and temporal variability of methane seepage from thermokarst lakes (TKL) within the Alaska North Slope gas hydrate province, assess the vulnerability of these areas to ongoing and future arctic climate change and determine if gas hydrate dissociation resulting from permafrost melting is contributing to the current lake emissions. Analyses were focused on four main lake locations referred to in this report: Lake Qalluuraq (referred to as Lake Q) and Lake Teshekpuk (both on Alaska's North Slope) and Lake Killarney and Goldstream Bill Lake (both in Alaska's interior). From analyses of gases coming from lakes in Alaska, we showed that ecological seeps are common in Alaska and they account for a larger source of atmospheric methane today than geologic subcap seeps. Emissions from the geologic source could increase with potential implications for climate warming feedbacks. Our analyses of TKL sites showing gas ebullition were complemented with geophysical surveys, providing important insight about the distribution of shallow gas in the sediments and the lake bottom manifestation of seepage (e.g., pockmarks). In Lake Q, Chirp data were limited in their capacity to image deeper sediments and did not capture the thaw bulb. The failure to capture the thaw bulb at Lake Q may in part be related to the fact that the present day lake is a remnant of an older, larger, and now-partially drained lake. These suggestions are consistent with our analyses of a dated core of sediment from the lake that shows that a wetland has been present at the site of Lake Q since approximately 12,000 thousand years ago. Chemical analyses of the core indicate that the availability of methane at the site has changed during the past and is correlated with past environmental changes (i.e. temperature and hydrology) in the Arctic. Discovery of methane seeps in Lake Teshekpuk in the northernmost part of the lake during 2009

  8. Younger-Dryas cooling and sea-ice feedbacks were prominent features of the Pleistocene-Holocene transition in Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Mann, Daniel H.; Wooller, Matthew J.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Wiles, Gregory C.; Groves, Pamela; Kunz, Michael L.; Baughman, Carson A.; Reanier, Richard E.

    2017-08-01

    Declining sea-ice extent is currently amplifying climate warming in the Arctic. Instrumental records at high latitudes are too short-term to provide sufficient historical context for these trends, so paleoclimate archives are needed to better understand the functioning of the sea ice-albedo feedback. Here we use the oxygen isotope values of wood cellulose in living and sub-fossil willow shrubs (δ18Owc) (Salix spp.) that have been radiocarbon-dated (14C) to produce a multi-millennial record of climatic change on Alaska's North Slope during the Pleistocene-Holocene transition (13,500-7500 calibrated 14C years before present; 13.5-7.5 ka). We first analyzed the spatial and temporal patterns of δ18Owc in living willows growing at upland sites and found that over the last 30 years δ18Owc values in individual growth rings correlate with local summer temperature and inter-annual variations in summer sea-ice extent. Deglacial δ18Owc values from 145 samples of subfossil willows clearly record the Allerød warm period (∼13.2 ka), the Younger Dryas cold period (12.9-11.7 ka), and the Holocene Thermal Maximum (11.7-9.0 ka). The magnitudes of isotopic changes over these rapid climate oscillations were ∼4.5‰, which is about 60% of the differences in δ18Owc between those willows growing during the last glacial period and today. Modeling of isotope-precipitation relationships based on Rayleigh distillation processes suggests that during the Younger Dryas these large shifts in δ18Owc values were caused by interactions between local temperature and changes in evaporative moisture sources, the latter controlled by sea ice extent in the Arctic Ocean and Bering Sea. Based on these results and on the effects that sea-ice have on climate today, we infer that ocean-derived feedbacks amplified temperature changes and enhanced precipitation in coastal regions of Arctic Alaska during warm times in the past. Today, isotope values in willows on the North Slope of Alaska are similar

  9. Trends in NDVI and tundra community composition in the Arctic of NE Alaska between 1984 and 2009

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert R. Pattison; Janet C. Jorgenson; Martha K. Raynolds; Jeffery M. Welker

    2015-01-01

    As Arctic ecosystems experience increases in surface air temperatures, plot-level analyses of tundra vegetation composition suggest that there are important changes occurring in tundra communities that are typified by increases in shrubs and declines in non-vascular species. At the same time analyses of NDVI indicate that the Arctic tundra is greening. Few studies have...

  10. Effects of disturbance on ecosystem dynamics of tundra and riparian vegetation: A project in the R4D program. Final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Reynolds, J.F.

    1995-12-31

    Models were proposed as research tools to test the basic understanding of the structure and function of arctic ecosystems, as a means for providing initial management assessments of potential response to energy-related development, and as a vehicle for extrapolation of research results to other arctic sites and landscapes. This final summary report reviews progress made on models at a variety of scales from nutrient uptake by individual roots to nutrient availability within arctic landscapes, and examines potentials and critical limitations of these models for providing insight on patch and landscape level function in tundra regions.

  11. CARVE: Daily Thaw State of Boreal and Arctic Alaska from AMSR-E and SSM/I, 2003-2014

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — This data set provides daily 10 km resolution maps of the Alaskan and Arctic Boreal land surface state as either frozen, melting, or thawed. These data are generated...

  12. Low-altitude photographic transects of the Arctic Network of National Park Units and Selawik National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, July 2013

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marcot, Bruce G.; Jorgenson, M. Torre; DeGange, Anthony R.

    2014-01-01

    During July 16–18, 2013, low-level photography flights were conducted (with a Cessna 185 with floats and a Cessna 206 with tundra tires) over the five administrative units of the National Park Service Arctic Network (Bering Land Bridge National Preserve, Cape Krusenstern National Monument, Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve, Kobuk Valley National Park, and Noatak National Preserve) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Selawik National Wildlife Refuge in northwest Alaska, to provide images of current conditions and prevalence of land-cover types as a baseline for measuring future change, and to complement the existing grid-based sample photography of the region. Total flight time was 17 hours, 46 minutes, and total flight distance was 2,590 kilometers, at a mean altitude of about 300 meters above ground level. A total of 19,167 photographs were taken from five digital camera systems: 1. A Drift® HD-170 (focal length 5.00 mm);

  13. Reconstruction of past methane availability in an Arctic Alaska wetland indicates climate influenced methane release during the past ~12,000 years

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wooller, Matthew J.; Pohlman, John W.; Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Langdon, Peter; Jones, Miriam; Anthony, Katey M. Walter; Becker, Kevin W.; Hinrichs, Kai-Uwe; Elvert, Marcus

    2012-01-01

    Atmospheric contributions of methane from Arctic wetlands during the Holocene are dynamic and linked to climate oscillations. However, long-term records linking climate variability to methane availability in Arctic wetlands are lacking. We present a multi-proxy ~12,000 year paleoecological reconstruction of intermittent methane availability from a radiocarbon-dated sediment core (LQ-West) taken from a shallow tundra lake (Qalluuraq Lake) in Arctic Alaska. Specifically, stable carbon isotopic values of photosynthetic biomarkers and methane are utilized to estimate the proportional contribution of methane-derived carbon to lake-sediment-preserved benthic (chironomids) and pelagic (cladocerans) components over the last ~12,000 years. These results were compared to temperature, hydrologic, and habitat reconstructions from the same site using chironomid assemblage data, oxygen isotopes of chironomid head capsules, and radiocarbon ages of plant macrofossils. Cladoceran ephippia from ~4,000 cal year BP sediments have δ13C values that range from ~−39 to −31‰, suggesting peak methane carbon assimilation at that time. These low δ13C values coincide with an apparent decrease in effective moisture and development of a wetland that included Sphagnum subsecundum. Incorporation of methane-derived carbon by chironomids and cladocerans decreased from ~2,500 to 1,500 cal year BP, coinciding with a temperature decrease. Live-collected chironomids with a radiocarbon age of 1,640 cal year BP, and fossil chironomids from 1,500 cal year BP in the core illustrate that ‘old’ carbon has also contributed to the development of the aquatic ecosystem since ~1,500 cal year BP. The relatively low δ13C values of aquatic invertebrates (as low as −40.5‰) provide evidence of methane incorporation by lake invertebrates, and suggest intermittent climate-linked methane release from the lake throughout the Holocene.

  14. Light-stress avoidance mechanisms in a Sphagnum-dominated wet coastal Arctic tundra ecosystem in Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zona, D; Oechel, Walter C; Richards, James H; Hastings, Steven; Kopetz, Irene; Ikawa, Hiroki; Oberbauer, Steven

    2011-03-01

    The Arctic experiences a high-radiation environment in the summer with 24-hour daylight for more than two months. Damage to plants and ecosystem metabolism can be muted by overcast conditions common in much of the Arctic. However, with climate change, extreme dry years and clearer skies could lead to the risk of increased photoxidation and photoinhibition in Arctic primary producers. Mosses, which often exceed the NPP of vascular plants in Arctic areas, are often understudied. As a result, the effect of specific environmental factors, including light, on these growth forms is poorly understood. Here, we investigated net ecosystem exchange (NEE) at the ecosystem scale, net Sphagnum CO2 exchange (NSE), and photoinhibition to better understand the impact of light on carbon exchange from a moss-dominated coastal tundra ecosystem during the summer season 2006. Sphagnum photosynthesis showed photoinhibition early in the season coupled with low ecosystem NEE. However, later in the season, Sphagnum maintained a significant CO2 uptake, probably for the development of subsurface moss layers protected from strong radiation. We suggest that the compact canopy structure of Sphagnum reduces light penetration to the subsurface layers of the moss mat and thereby protects the active photosynthetic tissues from damage. This stress avoidance mechanism allowed Sphagnum to constitute a significant percentage (up to 60%) of the ecosystem net daytime CO2 uptake at the end of the growing season despite the high levels of radiation experienced.

  15. Benefit sharing in the Arctic energy sector: Perspectives on corporate policies and practices in Northern Russia and Alaska

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tysyachnyouk, M.; Petrov, Andrey N.

    2018-01-01

    Many transnational energy companies are engaged in the exploration and development of oil reserves in the Arctic, and are facing policy challenges in respect to benefit sharing with the local communities. Benefit sharing arrangements between oil and natural gas companies and indigenous communities

  16. Multi-decadal trends in spring arrival of avian migrants to the central Arctic coast of Alaska: Effects of environmental and ecological factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ward, David; Helmericks, J.; Hupp, Jerry; McManus, L.; Budde, Michael; Douglas, David C.; Tape, K.D.

    2016-01-01

    Warming in the Arctic has caused the transition from winter to summer to occur weeks earlier over the last half century, yet little is known about whether avian migrants have altered their timing of arrival on breeding areas to match this earlier seasonal transition. Over a 50-yr period, we examined trends in the timing of the first arrival for 16 avian migrant species at the terminus of their northward migration along the central Arctic coast of Alaska and compared these trends to factors potentially influencing migration phenology. Date of first arrival occurred an average of 0.12 d yr−1 or 6 d (range = 3–10 d) earlier across all species and did not differ significantly among species between 1964 and 2013. Local climatic variables, particularly temperature, had a greater effect on a species first arrival date than did large-scale climatic predictors. First arrival date was 1.03 d earlier for every 1°C annual change in temperature, but there was nearly a 2-fold difference in the range of responses across species (0.69–1.33 d °C−1), implying that some species did better than others at timing their arrival with changing temperature. There was weak support for an influence of foraging strategy, migration distance, and flight path on timing of first arrival. Our findings, like others from temperate latitudes, indicate that avian migrants are responsive to changing environmental conditions, though some species appear to be more adaptive than others.

  17. High and Increasing Shoreline Erosion Rates of Thermokarst Lakes Set in Ice-Rich Permafrost Terrain of the Arctic Coastal Plain of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bondurant, A. C.; Arp, C. D.; Jones, B. M.; Shur, Y.; Daanen, R. P.

    2017-12-01

    Thermokarst lakes are a dominant landform shaping landscapes and impacting permafrost on the Arctic Coastal Plain (ACP) of northern Alaska, a region of continuous permafrost. Here lakes cover greater than 20% of the landscape and drained lake basins cover an additional 50 to 60% of the landscape. The formation, expansion, and drainage of thaw lakes has been described by some researchers as part of a natural cycle that has reworked the ACP landscape during the Holocene. Yet the factors and processes controlling contemporary thermokarst lake expansion remain poorly described. This study focuses on the factors controlling expansion rates of thermokarst lakes in three ACP regions that vary in landscape history, ground-ice content, and lake morphology (i.e. size and depth), as well as evaluating changes through time. Through the use of historical aerial imagery, satellite imagery, and field observations, this study identifies the controlling factors at multiple spatial and temporal scales to better understand the processes relating to thermokarst lake expansion. Studies of 35 lakes across the ACP shows regional differences in expansion rate related to permafrost ice content ranging from an average expansion rate of 0.62 m/yr where ice content is highest ( 86%) to 0.16 m/yr where ice content is lowest (45%-71%). A subset of these lakes analyzed over multiple time periods show increasing rates of erosion, with average rates being 37% higher over the period 1979-2002 (0.73 m/yr) compared to 1948-1979 (0.53 m/yr). These increased rates of erosion have important implications for the regional hydrologic cycle and localized permafrost degradation. Predicting how thermokarst lakes will behave locally and on a landscape scale is increasingly important for managing habitat and water resources and informing models of land-climate interactions in the Arctic.

  18. Blood selenium concentrations in female Pacific black brant molting in Arctic Alaska: Relationships with age and habitat salinity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franson, J. Christian; Flint, Paul L.; Schmutz, Joel A.

    2016-01-01

    Blood samples collected from 81 female Pacific black brant (Branta bernicla nigricans) molting near Teshekpuk Lake, Alaska, were analyzed for selenium concentration. The concentration of selenium in blood of after second year (hatched two or more years ago) females (0.84 μg/g wet weight) was significantly greater than the concentration in second year (hatched the previous year) females (0.61 μg/g wet weight). The concentrations of selenium we found in blood of black brant were 1.5 to 2 times greater than baseline values typical of freshwater birds, but considerably lower than reported in other marine waterfowl sampled in Alaska. This finding may be attributable in part to the nearly exclusive herbivorous diet of black brant. No relationship was noted between blood selenium concentration and molting habitat salinity. We are unaware of any previous reports of blood selenium concentrations in black brant.

  19. Estimation of vegetation structure using SAR and LiDAR data in support of ABoVE subsurface retrievals over arctic-boreal zones in Alaska and Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, R. H.; Tabatabaeenejad, A.; Moghaddam, M.

    2017-12-01

    The 2017 Arctic-Boreal Vulnerability Experiment (ABoVE) airborne campaign has flown various remote sensing sensors, including radars (P-band AirMOSS, L-band UAVSAR, Ka-band AirSWOT), waveform LiDAR (LVIS), and imaging spectrometers (AVIRIS) over Alaska and Western Canada. The data acquired by these instruments provide an opportunity for the fusion of multi-physics data to improve the characterization of aboveground vegetation, belowground biomass, and subsurface soil dynamics. Low-frequency radars (such as P- and L-band) can penetrate through canopy and reach the subsurface soils; however, the aboveground and belowground signatures embedded in radar backscatter are mixed and hard to separate. Subsurface radar retrievals often suffer from the lack of proper vegetation structure parameters (such as canopy height, trunk height, and tree density), which are essential to accuracy of radar scattering models. LiDAR measurements, on the other hand, can estimate canopy height profile (CHP) and vertical foliage profile (VFP) from the return laser waveform data. To integrate the information from both SAR and LiDAR data, we first look into the areas imaged by both instruments and select a subset of them as training data set. LiDAR-derived vegetation structure and the in-situ measurements taken from the field campaign in August 2017 (concurrent with the ABoVE SAR flights over Alaska North Slope) are used as ground truth data. Since the radar swaths are much wider than LiDAR swaths, we then use the trained regression models to estimate the vegetation parameters for the radar-only pixels. This approach can effectively extend the spatial coverage of LiDAR-derived products and improve the accuracy of subsurface radar retrievals. Moreover, through allometric relations, more accurate parameterization of aboveground vegetation can help in estimating the belowground biomass with less uncertainty. We will present the results of our model analysis as well as the estimated above- and

  20. Summary of wildlife-related research on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, 2002–17

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearce, John M.; Flint, Paul L.; Atwood, Todd C.; Douglas, David C.; Adams, Layne G.; Johnson, Heather E.; Arthur, Stephen M.; Latty, Christopher J.

    2018-01-23

    We summarize recent (2002–17) publicly available information from studies within the 1002 Area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge as well as terrestrial and coastal ecosystems elsewhere on the Arctic Coastal Plain that are relevant to the 1002 Area. This report provides an update on earlier research summaries on caribou (Rangifer tarandus), forage quality and quantity, polar bears (Ursus maritimus), muskoxen (Ovibos moschatus), and snow geese (Chen caerulescens). We also provide information on new research related to climate, migratory birds, permafrost, coastal erosion, coastal lagoons, fish, water resources, and potential effects of industrial disturbance on wildlife. From this literature review, we noted evidence for change in the status of some wildlife and their habitats, and the lack of change for others. In the 1002 Area, muskox numbers have decreased and the Porcupine Caribou Herd has exhibited variation in use of the area during the calving season. Polar bears are now more common on shore in summer and fall because of declines in sea ice in the Beaufort Sea. In a study spanning 25 years, there were no significant changes in vegetation quality and quantity, soil conditions, or permafrost thaw in the coastal plain of the 1002 Area. Based on studies from the central Arctic Coastal Plain, there are persistent and emerging uncertainties about the long-term effects of energy development for caribou. In contrast, recent studies that examined direct and indirect effects of industrial activities and infrastructure on birds in the central Arctic Coastal Plain found little effect for the species and disturbances examined, except for the possibility of increased predator activity near human developments.

  1. DOI/GTN-P Climate and active-layer data acquired in the National Petroleum Reserve–Alaska and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, 1998–2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urban, Frank E.; Clow, Gary D.

    2016-03-04

    This report provides data collected by the climate monitoring array of the U.S. Department of the Interior on Federal lands in Arctic Alaska over the period August 1998 to July 2014; this array is part of the Global Terrestrial Network for Permafrost (DOI/GTN-P). In addition to presenting data, this report also describes monitoring, data collection, and quality-control methods. The array of 16 monitoring stations spans lat 68.5°N. to 70.5°N. and long 142.5°W. to 161°W., an area of approximately 150,000 square kilometers. Climate summaries are presented along with quality-controlled data. Data collection is ongoing and includes the following climate- and permafrost-related variables: air temperature, wind speed and direction, ground temperature, soil moisture, snow depth, rainfall totals, up- and downwelling shortwave radiation, and atmospheric pressure. These data were collected by the U.S. Geological Survey in close collaboration with the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

  2. DOI/GTN-P Climate and active-layer data acquired in the National Petroleum Reserve–Alaska and the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, 1998–2015

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urban, Frank E.; Clow, Gary D.

    2017-02-06

    This report provides data collected by the climate monitoring array of the U.S. Department of the Interior on Federal lands in Arctic Alaska over the period August 1998 to July 2015; this array is part of the Global Terrestrial Network for Permafrost (DOI/GTN-P). In addition to presenting data, this report also describes monitoring, data collection, and quality-control methods. The array of 16 monitoring stations spans lat 68.5°N. to 70.5°N. and long 142.5°W. to 161°W., an area of approximately 150,000 square kilometers. Climate summaries are presented along with quality-controlled data. Data collection is ongoing and includes the following climate- and permafrost-related variables: air temperature, wind speed and direction, ground temperature, soil moisture, snow depth, rainfall totals, up- and downwelling shortwave radiation, and atmospheric pressure. These data were collected by the U.S. Geological Survey in close collaboration with the Bureau of Land Management and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

  3. Summer temperature increase has distinct effects on the ectomycorrhizal fungal communities of moist tussock and dry tundra in Arctic Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgado, Luis N; Semenova, Tatiana A; Welker, Jeffrey M; Walker, Marilyn D; Smets, Erik; Geml, József

    2015-02-01

    Arctic regions are experiencing the greatest rates of climate warming on the planet and marked changes have already been observed in terrestrial arctic ecosystems. While most studies have focused on the effects of warming on arctic vegetation and nutrient cycling, little is known about how belowground communities, such as fungi root-associated, respond to warming. Here, we investigate how long-term summer warming affects ectomycorrhizal (ECM) fungal communities. We used Ion Torrent sequencing of the rDNA internal transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2) region to compare ECM fungal communities in plots with and without long-term experimental warming in both dry and moist tussock tundra. Cortinarius was the most OTU-rich genus in the moist tundra, while the most diverse genus in the dry tundra was Tomentella. On the diversity level, in the moist tundra we found significant differences in community composition, and a sharp decrease in the richness of ECM fungi due to warming. On the functional level, our results indicate that warming induces shifts in the extramatrical properties of the communities, where the species with medium-distance exploration type seem to be favored with potential implications for the mobilization of different nutrient pools in the soil. In the dry tundra, neither community richness nor community composition was significantly altered by warming, similar to what had been observed in ECM host plants. There was, however, a marginally significant increase in OTUs identified as ECM fungi with the medium-distance exploration type in the warmed plots. Linking our findings of decreasing richness with previous results of increasing ECM fungal biomass suggests that certain ECM species are favored by warming and may become more abundant, while many other species may go locally extinct due to direct or indirect effects of warming. Such compositional shifts in the community might affect nutrient cycling and soil organic C storage. © 2014 The Authors. Global Change

  4. High Resolution CH4 Emissions and Dissolved CH4 Measurements Elucidate Surface Gas Exchange Processes in Toolik Lake, Arctic Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del Sontro, T.; Sollberger, S.; Kling, G. W.; Shaver, G. R.; Eugster, W.

    2013-12-01

    Approximately 14% of the Alaskan North Slope is covered in lakes of various sizes and depths. Diffusive carbon emissions (CH4 and CO2) from these lakes offset the tundra sink by ~20 %, but the offset would substantially increase if ebullitive CH4 emissions were also considered. Ultimately, arctic lake CH4 emissions are not insignificant in the global CH4 budget and their contribution is bound to increase due to impacts from climate change. Here we present high resolution CH4 emission data as measured via eddy covariance and a Los Gatos gas analyzer during the ice free period from Toolik Lake, a deep (20 m) Arctic lake located on the Alaskan North Slope, over the last few summers. Emissions are relatively low (Gatos gas analyzer. Thus, having both the flux and the CH4 gradient across the air-water interface measured directly, we can calculate k and investigate the processes influencing CH4 gas exchange in this lake. Preliminary results indicate that there are two regimes in wind speed that impact k - one at low wind speeds up to ~5 m s-1 and another at higher wind speeds (max ~10 m s-1). The differential wind speeds during night and day may compound the effect of convective mixing and cause the diurnal variation in observed fluxes.

  5. Carboniferous and older carbonate rocks: Lithofacies, extent, and reservoir quality: Chapter CC in The oil and gas resource potential of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge 1002 area, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumoulin, Julie A.

    1999-01-01

    Carboniferous and older carbonate rocks are potential hydrocarbon reservoir facies for four plays in the 1002 area of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. These rocks include several units in the pre-Carboniferous basement and the Carboniferous Lisburne Group. Data from exploratory wells west of the 1002 area, outcrops south of the 1002 area, seismic lines, and well logs are synthesized herein to infer carbonate lithofacies, extent, and reservoir character beneath the northeastern Arctic coastal plain.A chiefly shallow-water basement carbonate succession of Late Proterozoic through Early Devonian age (Katakturuk Dolomite, Nanook Limestone, and Mount Copleston Limestone) is interpreted to be present beneath much of the south-central 1002 area; it reaches 3,700 m thick in outcrop and is the primary reservoir for the Deformed Franklinian Play. A more heterogeneous lithologic assemblage of uncertain age forms basement in the northwestern part of the 1002 area; well data define three subunits that contain carbonate intervals 5- 50 m thick. These strata are prospective reservoirs for the Undeformed Franklinian Play and could also be reservoirs for the Niguanak- Aurora Play. Regional lithologic correlations suggest a Cambrian-Late Proterozoic(?) age for subunits one and two, and a slightly younger, later Cambrian-Silurian age for subunit three. Seismic and well data indicate that subunit one overlies subunit two and is overlain by subunit three. The Mississippian and Pennsylvanian Lisburne Group, a predominantly carbonate platform succession as much as 1 km thick, is projected beneath the southernmost part of the 1002 area and is a potential reservoir for the Ellesmerian Thrust-belt and Niguanak-Aurora Plays.Carbonate rocks in the 1002 area probably retain little primary porosity but may have locally well developed secondary porosity. Measured reservoir parameters in basement carbonate strata are low (porosity generally ≤ 5%; permeability ≤ 0.2 md) but drill

  6. Assessment of climate and land use change impacts on surface water runoff and connectivity in a continuous permafrost catchment on the Arctic Coastal Plain, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaedeke, A.; Arp, C. D.; Liljedahl, A. K.; Daanen, R. P.; Whitman, M. S.

    2016-12-01

    A changing climate is leading to rapid transformations of hydrological processes in low-gradient Arctic terrestrial ecosystems which are dominated by lakes and ponds, wetlands, polygonised tundra, and connecting stream and river networks. The aim of this study is to gain a deeper understanding of the impacts of climate and land use change on surface water availability and connectivity by utilizing the process-based, spatially distributed hydrological model WaSiM. Crea Creek Watershed (30 km2), which is located in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska (NPR-A) was chosen as study area because of its permafrost landforms (bedfast and floating ice lakes, high and low centered polygons), existing observational data (discharge, snow depth, and meteorological variables since 2009), and resource management issues related to permafrost degradation and aquatic habitat dynamics. Foremost of concern is oil development scheduled to begin starting in 2017 with the construction of a permanent road and drilling pad directly within the Crea Watershed. An interdisciplinary team consisting of scientists and regional stakeholders defined the following scenarios to be simulated using WaSiM: (1) industrial development (impact of water removal from lakes (winter) for ice road construction on downstream (summer) runoff), (2) permanent road construction to allow oil companies access to develop and extract petroleum, and (3) potential modes of climate change including warmer, snowier winters and prolonged drought during summers. Downscaled meteorological output from the Weather Research & Forecasting Model (WRF) will be used as the forcing for analysis of climate scenarios alone and for assessment of land-use responses under varying climate scenarios. Our results will provide regional stakeholders with information on the impacts of climate and land use change on surface water connectivity that affects aquatic habitat, as well as lake hydrologic interactions with permafrost. These finding

  7. Arctic lake physical processes and regimes with implications for winter water availability and management in the national petroleum reserve alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Benjamin M.; Arp, C.D.; Hinkel, Kenneth M.; Beck, R.A.; Schmutz, J.A.; Winston, B.

    2009-01-01

    Lakes are dominant landforms in the National Petroleum Reserve Alaska (NPRA) as well as important social and ecological resources. Of recent importance is the management of these freshwater ecosystems because lakes deeper than maximum ice thickness provide an important and often sole source of liquid water for aquatic biota, villages, and industry during winter. To better understand seasonal and annual hydrodynamics in the context of lake morphometry, we analyzed lakes in two adjacent areas where winter water use is expected to increase in the near future because of industrial expansion. Landsat Thematic Mapper and Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus imagery acquired between 1985 and 2007 were analyzed and compared with climate data to understand interannual variability. Measured changes in lake area extent varied by 0.6% and were significantly correlated to total precipitation in the preceding 12 months (p growth models were used to better understand seasonal hydrodynamics, surface area-to-volume relations, winter water availability, and more permanent changes related to geomorphic change. Together, these results describe how lakes vary seasonally and annually in two critical areas of the NPRA and provide simple models to help better predict variation in lake-water supply. Our findings suggest that both overestimation and underestimation of actual available winter water volume may occur regularly, and this understanding may help better inform management strategies as future resource use expands in the NPRA. ?? 2008 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

  8. Arctic lake physical processes and regimes with implications for winter water availability and management in the national petroleum reserve alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Benjamin M.; Arp, C.D.; Hinkel, Kenneth M.; Beck, R.A.; Schmutz, J.A.; Winston, B.

    2009-01-01

    Lakes are dominant landforms in the National Petroleum Reserve Alaska (NPRA) as well as important social and ecological resources. Of recent importance is the management of these freshwater ecosystems because lakes deeper than maximum ice thickness provide an important and often sole source of liquid water for aquatic biota, villages, and industry during winter. To better understand seasonal and annual hydrodynamics in the context of lake morphometry, we analyzed lakes in two adjacent areas where winter water use is expected to increase in the near future because of industrial expansion. Landsat Thematic Mapper and Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus imagery acquired between 1985 and 2007 were analyzed and compared with climate data to understand interannual variability. Measured changes in lake area extent varied by 0.6% and were significantly correlated to total precipitation in the preceding 12 months (p relation, the modeled lake area extent from 1985 to 2007 showed no long-term trends. In addition, high-resolution aerial photography, bathymetric surveys, water-level monitoring, and lake-ice thickness measurements and growth models were used to better understand seasonal hydrodynamics, surface area-to-volume relations, winter water availability, and more permanent changes related to geomorphic change. Together, these results describe how lakes vary seasonally and annually in two critical areas of the NPRA and provide simple models to help better predict variation in lake-water supply. Our findings suggest that both overestimation and underestimation of actual available winter water volume may occur regularly, and this understanding may help better inform management strategies as future resource use expands in the NPRA. ?? 2008 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

  9. Evidence That Drought-Induced Stomatal Closure Is Not an Important Constraint on White Spruce Performance Near the Arctic Treeline in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sullivan, P.; Brownlee, A.; Ellison, S.; Sveinbjornsson, B.

    2014-12-01

    Tree cores collected from trees growing at high latitudes have long been used to reconstruct past climates, because of close positive correlations between temperature and tree growth. However, in recent decades and at many sites, these relationships have deteriorated and have even become negative in some instances. The observation of declining tree growth in response to rising temperature has prompted many investigators to suggest that high latitude trees may be increasingly exhibiting drought-induced stomatal closure. In the Brooks Range of northern Alaska, the observation of low and declining growth of white spruce is more prevalent in the central and eastern parts of the range, where precipitation is lower, providing superficial support for the drought stress hypothesis. In this study, we investigated the occurrence of white spruce drought-induced stomatal closure in four watersheds along a west to east gradient near the Arctic treeline in the Brooks Range. We obtained a historical perspective on tree growth and water relations by collecting increment cores for analysis of ring widths and carbon isotopes in tree-ring alpha-cellulose. Meanwhile, we made detailed assessments of contemporary water relations at the scales of the whole canopy and the needle. All of our data indicate that drought-induced stomatal closure is probably not responsible for low and declining growth in the central and eastern Brooks Range. Carbon isotope discrimination has generally increased over the past century and our calculations indicate that needle inter-cellular CO2 concentration is much greater now than it was in the early 1900's. Measurements of needle gas exchange are consistent with the tree core record, in the sense that instances of low photosynthesis at our sites are not coincident with similarly low stomatal conductance and low inter-cellular CO2 concentration. Finally, hourly measurements of xylem sap flow indicate that trees at our study sites are able to maintain near

  10. The nature of spatial transitions in the Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    H. E. Epstein; J. Beringer; W. A. Gould; A. H. Lloyd; C. D. Thompson; F. S. Chapin III; G. J. Michaelson; C. L. Ping; T. S. Rupp; D. A. Walker

    2004-01-01

    Aim Describe the spatial and temporal properties of transitions in the Arctic and develop a conceptual understanding of the nature of these spatial transitions in the face of directional environmental change. Location Arctic tundra ecosystems of the North Slope of Alaska and the tundraforest region of the Seward Peninsula, Alaska. Methods We synthesize information from...

  11. Low-altitude photographic transects of the Arctic network of national park units and Selawik National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, July 2013

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruce G. Marcot; M. Torre Jorgenson; Anthony R. DeGange

    2014-01-01

    During July 16–18, 2013, low-level photography flights were conducted (with a Cessna 185 with floats and a Cessna 206 with tundra tires) over the five administrative units of the National Park Service Arctic Network (Bering Land Bridge National Preserve, Cape Krusenstern National Monument, Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve, Kobuk Valley National Park, and...

  12. Forecasters Handbook for the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    1989-10-01

    Arctic is the mountainous terrain. The * Aleutians extend for more than a thousand miles from the Alaskan Peninsula to Attu Island (Fig. 2-10). Unimak is... UNIMAK 10 ISLAND UNALASKA Figure 2-10. Alaska and the Aleutian Islands. 2-16 J NANSEN ALERT ,; SOUND AXEL INELLESIEE QUEEN/ ELIZABETH/ ISLANDSl GRE...received at Elmendorf Air Force Base on 11 May 1990. Arctic plume generation is apparent over Unimak Island in obvious close association with a polar

  13. Climate Change and International Competition: the US Army in the Arctic Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-05-21

    maritime travel in the Arctic is limited, but climate change is gradually uncovering the polar region and projections suggest that, by 2030, retreating...Defined by US Congress Source: US Arctic Research Commission, Arctic Boundary Map: Alaska with Polar Inset, May 27, 2009, accessed November 26, 2014...Alaska.90 USCG elements are also present in the Northern Waters of the Arctic and the Bearing Straits. In recognition of the changing environment

  14. Arctic Risk Management (ARMNet) Network: Linking Risk Management Practitioners and Researchers Across the Arctic Regions of Canada and Alaska To Improve Risk, Emergency and Disaster Preparedness and Mitigation Through Comparative Analysis and Applied Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garland, A.

    2015-12-01

    The Arctic Risk Management Network (ARMNet) was conceived as a trans-disciplinary hub to encourage and facilitate greater cooperation, communication and exchange among American and Canadian academics and practitioners actively engaged in the research, management and mitigation of risks, emergencies and disasters in the Arctic regions. Its aim is to assist regional decision-makers through the sharing of applied research and best practices and to support greater inter-operability and bilateral collaboration through improved networking, joint exercises, workshops, teleconferences, radio programs, and virtual communications (eg. webinars). Most importantly, ARMNet is a clearinghouse for all information related to the management of the frequent hazards of Arctic climate and geography in North America, including new and emerging challenges arising from climate change, increased maritime polar traffic and expanding economic development in the region. ARMNet is an outcome of the Arctic Observing Network (AON) for Long Term Observations, Governance, and Management Discussions, www.arcus.org/search-program. The AON goals continue with CRIOS (www.ariesnonprofit.com/ARIESprojects.php) and coastal erosion research (www.ariesnonprofit.com/webinarCoastalErosion.php) led by the North Slope Borough Risk Management Office with assistance from ARIES (Applied Research in Environmental Sciences Nonprofit, Inc.). The constituency for ARMNet will include all northern academics and researchers, Arctic-based corporations, First Responders (FRs), Emergency Management Offices (EMOs) and Risk Management Offices (RMOs), military, Coast Guard, northern police forces, Search and Rescue (SAR) associations, boroughs, territories and communities throughout the Arctic. This presentation will be of interest to all those engaged in Arctic affairs, describe the genesis of ARMNet and present the results of stakeholder meetings and webinars designed to guide the next stages of the Project.

  15. Arctic Haze Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mei, Linlu; Xue, Yong

    2013-04-01

    The Arctic atmosphere is perturbed by nature/anthropogenic aerosol sources known as the Arctic haze, was firstly observed in 1956 by J. Murray Mitchell in Alaska (Mitchell, 1956). Pacyna and Shaw (1992) summarized that Arctic haze is a mixture of anthropogenic and natural pollutants from a variety of sources in different geographical areas at altitudes from 2 to 4 or 5 km while the source for layers of polluted air at altitudes below 2.5 km mainly comes from episodic transportation of anthropogenic sources situated closer to the Arctic. Arctic haze of low troposphere was found to be of a very strong seasonal variation characterized by a summer minimum and a winter maximum in Alaskan (Barrie, 1986; Shaw, 1995) and other Arctic region (Xie and Hopke, 1999). An anthropogenic factor dominated by together with metallic species like Pb, Zn, V, As, Sb, In, etc. and nature source such as sea salt factor consisting mainly of Cl, Na, and K (Xie and Hopke, 1999), dust containing Fe, Al and so on (Rahn et al.,1977). Black carbon and soot can also be included during summer time because of the mix of smoke from wildfires. The Arctic air mass is a unique meteorological feature of the troposphere characterized by sub-zero temperatures, little precipitation, stable stratification that prevents strong vertical mixing and low levels of solar radiations (Barrie, 1986), causing less pollutants was scavenged, the major revival pathway for particulates from the atmosphere in Arctic (Shaw, 1981, 1995; Heintzenberg and Larssen, 1983). Due to the special meteorological condition mentioned above, we can conclude that Eurasian is the main contributor of the Arctic pollutants and the strong transport into the Arctic from Eurasia during winter caused by the high pressure of the climatologically persistent Siberian high pressure region (Barrie, 1986). The paper intends to address the atmospheric characteristics of Arctic haze by comparing the clear day and haze day using different dataset

  16. Subsurface flow recently triggered the development of taliks under a sub-Arctic road embankment: a prelude to the collapse of the Alaska Highway?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, L.; Fortier, D.; Sliger, M.; McKenzie, J. M.; Murchison, P.

    2017-12-01

    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 highway for the transportation of goods and people across this remote corner of Canada. About a quarter of the Alaska Highway is built on permafrost, which is typically ice-rich and at a temperature near the point of thawing. Degradation of the permafrost under the embankment has led to severe structural damages to the highway such as deep longitudinal cracks, extended depressions, potholes and sinkholes. Here we present thermal data from the Beaver Creek experimental road test section in southwestern Yukon. Our study investigates convective heat transfers linked to subsurface water flow under the road embankment based on seven years (2009 to 2016) of thermal monitoring. Observation results demonstrate that snowmelt water infiltration in the spring causes rapid temperature increase of the upper portion of the embankment. Later in the summer, subsurface flow under the highway embankment can lead to step temperature-increase rates, which can be 200 times larger than those via conductive heat transfers. In the fall water trapped under the road significantly delays freeze back of the active layer and contributes to higher permafrost temperature. During the monitoring period, we observed the initiation and growth of taliks along sub-surface flow paths. Positive feedback mechanisms related to water flow through the taliks significantly increased permafrost degradation. Such taliks represent an un-precedent and presumably irreversible thermal state of the highway. Similar terrain conditions which severely threaten the structural integrity of the infrastructure on the short term are numerous along the Alaska Highway corridor.

  17. Air breathing in the Arctic: influence of temperature, hypoxia, activity and restricted air access on respiratory physiology of the Alaska blackfish Dallia pectoralis

    OpenAIRE

    Lefevre, Sjannie; Damsgaard, Christian; Pascale, Desirae R.; Nilsson, Göran E.; Stecyk, Jonathan A. W.

    2014-01-01

    The Alaska blackfish (Dallia pectoralis) is an air-breathing fish native to Alaska and the Bering Sea islands, where it inhabits lakes that are ice-covered in the winter, but enters warm and hypoxic waters in the summer to forage and reproduce. To understand the respiratory physiology of this species under these conditions and the selective pressures that maintain the ability to breathe air, we acclimated fish to 5°C and 15°C and used respirometry to measure: standard oxygen uptake () in norm...

  18. Molecular epidemiological study of Arctic rabies virus isolates from Greenland and comparison with isolates from throughout the Arctic and Baltic regions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mansfield, K.L.; Racloz, V.; McElhinney, L.M.

    2006-01-01

    We report a Molecular epidemiological study of rabies in Arctic Countries by comparing a panel of novel Greenland isolates to a larger cohort of viral sequences from both Arctic and Baltic regions. Rabies Virus isolates originating from wildlife (Arctic/red foxes, raccoon-dogs and reindeer), from...... sequences from the Arctic and Arctic-like viruses, which were distinct from rabies isolates originating ill the Baltic region of Europe, the Steppes in Russia and from North America. The Arctic-like group consist of isolates from India, Pakistan, southeast Siberia and Japan. The Arctic group...... in northeast Siberia and Alaska. Arctic 2b isolates represent a biotype, which is dispersed throughout the Arctic region. The broad distribution of rabies in the Arctic regions including Greenland, Canada and Alaska provides evidence for the movement of rabies across borders....

  19. Prehistoric Alaska: The land

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Frederic H.; Weber, Florence R.; Rennick, Penny

    1994-01-01

    Many Alaskans know the dynamic nature of Alaska’s landscape firsthand. The 1964 earthquake, the 1989 eruption of Mount Redoubt volcano, the frequent earthquakes in the Aleutians and the ever-shifting meanders of the Yukon and Kuskokwim rivers remind them of constant changes to the land. These changes are part of the continuing story of the geologic growth and development of Alaska during hundreds of millions of years. By geologic time, Alaska has only recently come into existence and the dynamic processes that formed it continue to affect it. The landscape we see today has been shaped by glacier and stream erosion or their indirect effects, and to a lesser extent by volcanoes. Most prominently, if less obviously, Alaska has been built by slow movements of the Earth’s crust we call tectonic or mountain-building.During 5 billion years of geologic time, the Earth’s crust has repeatedly broken apart into plates. These plates have recombined, and have shifted positions relative to each other, to the Earth’s rotational axis and to the equator. Large parts of the Earth’s crust, including Alaska, have been built and destroyed by tectonic forces. Alaska is a collage of transported and locally formed fragments of crusts As erosion and deposition reshape the land surface, climatic changes, brought on partly by changing ocean and atmospheric circulation patterns, alter the location and extent of tropical, temperate and arctic environments. We need to understand the results of these processes as they acted upon Alaska to understand the formation of Alaska. Rocks can provide hints of previous environments because they contain traces of ocean floor and lost lands, bits and pieces of ancient history.

  20. Air breathing in the Arctic: influence of temperature, hypoxia, activity and restricted air access on respiratory physiology of the Alaska blackfish Dallia pectoralis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lefevre, Sjannie; Damsgaard, Christian; Pascale, Desirae R.; Nilsson, Göran E.; Stecyk, Jonathan A. W.

    2014-01-01

    The Alaska blackfish (Dallia pectoralis) is an air-breathing fish native to Alaska and the Bering Sea islands, where it inhabits lakes that are ice-covered in the winter, but enters warm and hypoxic waters in the summer to forage and reproduce. To understand the respiratory physiology of this species under these conditions and the selective pressures that maintain the ability to breathe air, we acclimated fish to 5°C and 15°C and used respirometry to measure: standard oxygen uptake () in normoxia (19.8 kPa PO2) and hypoxia (2.5 kPa), with and without access to air; partitioning of standard in normoxia and hypoxia; maximum and partitioning after exercise; and critical oxygen tension (Pcrit). Additionally, the effects of temperature acclimation on haematocrit, haemoglobin oxygen affinity and gill morphology were assessed. Standard was higher, but air breathing was not increased, at 15°C or after exercise at both temperatures. Fish acclimated to 5°C or 15°C increased air breathing to compensate and fully maintain standard in hypoxia. Fish were able to maintain through aquatic respiration when air was denied in normoxia, but when air was denied in hypoxia, standard was reduced by ∼30–50%. Pcrit was relatively high (5 kPa) and there were no differences in Pcrit, gill morphology, haematocrit or haemoglobin oxygen affinity at the two temperatures. Therefore, Alaska blackfish depends on air breathing in hypoxia and additional mechanisms must thus be utilised to survive hypoxic submergence during the winter, such as hypoxia-induced enhancement in the capacities for carrying and binding blood oxygen, behavioural avoidance of hypoxia and suppression of metabolic rate. PMID:25394628

  1. Connecting Arctic Research Across Boundaries through the Arctic Research Consortium of the United States (ARCUS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rich, R. H.; Myers, B.; Wiggins, H. V.; Zolkos, J.

    2017-12-01

    The complexities inherent in Arctic research demand a unique focus on making connections across the boundaries of discipline, institution, sector, geography, knowledge system, and culture. Since 1988, ARCUS has been working to bridge these gaps through communication, coordination, and collaboration. Recently, we have worked with partners to create a synthesis of the Arctic system, to explore the connectivity across the Arctic research community and how to strengthen it, to enable the community to have an effective voice in research funding policy, to implement a system for Arctic research community knowledge management, to bridge between global Sea Ice Prediction Network researchers and the science needs of coastal Alaska communities through the Sea Ice for Walrus Outlook, to strengthen ties between Polar researchers and educators, and to provide essential intangible infrastructure that enables cost-effective and productive research across boundaries. Employing expertise in managing for collaboration and interdisciplinarity, ARCUS complements and enables the work of its members, who constitute the Arctic research community and its key stakeholders. As a member-driven organization, everything that ARCUS does is achieved through partnership, with strong volunteer leadership of each activity. Key organizational partners in the United States include the U.S. Arctic Research Commission, Interagency Arctic Research Policy Committee, National Academy of Sciences Polar Research Board, and the North Slope Science Initiative. Internationally, ARCUS maintains strong bilateral connections with similarly focused groups in each Arctic country (and those interested in the Arctic), as well as with multinational organizations including the International Arctic Science Committee, the Association of Polar Early Career Educators, the University of the Arctic, and the Arctic Institute of North America. Currently, ARCUS is applying the best practices of the science of team science

  2. Alaska oil and gas: Energy wealth or vanishing opportunity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thomas, C.P.; Doughty, T.C.; Faulder, D.D.; Harrison, W.E.; Irving, J.S.; Jamison, H.C.; White, G.J.

    1991-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to systematically identify and review (a) the known and undiscovered reserves and resources of arctic Alaska, (b) the economic factors controlling development, (c) the risks and environmental considerations involved in development, and (d) the impacts of a temporary shutdown of the Alaska North Slope Oil Delivery System (ANSODS). 119 refs., 45 figs., 41 tabs.

  3. The genetic prehistory of the New World Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Raghavan, Maanasa; DeGiorgio, Michael; Albrechtsen, Anders

    2014-01-01

    The New World Arctic, the last region of the Americas to be populated by humans, has a relatively well-researched archaeology, but an understanding of its genetic history is lacking. We present genome-wide sequence data from ancient and present-day humans from Greenland, Arctic Canada, Alaska, Al...

  4. Arctic Newcomers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tonami, Aki

    2013-01-01

    Interest in the Arctic region and its economic potential in Japan, South Korea and Singapore was slow to develop but is now rapidly growing. All three countries have in recent years accelerated their engagement with Arctic states, laying the institutional frameworks needed to better understand...... and influence policies relating to the Arctic. But each country’s approach is quite different, writes Aki Tonami....

  5. Alaska's indigenous muskoxen: a history

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter C. Lent

    1998-03-01

    Full Text Available Muskoxen (Ovibos moschatus were widespread in northern and interior Alaska in the late Pleistocene but were never a dominant component of large mammal faunas. After the end of the Pleistocene they were even less common. Most skeletal finds have come from the Arctic Coastal Plain and the foothills of the Brooks Range. Archaeological evidence, mainly from the Point Barrow area, suggests that humans sporadically hunted small numbers of muskoxen over about 1500 years from early Birnirk culture to nineteenth century Thule culture. Skeletal remains found near Kivalina represent the most southerly Holocene record for muskoxen in Alaska. Claims that muskoxen survived into the early nineteenth century farther south in the Selawik - Buckland River region are not substantiated. Remains of muskox found by Beechey's party in Eschscholtz Bay in 1826 were almost certainly of Pleistocene age, not recent. Neither the introduction of firearms nor overwintering whalers played a significant role in the extinction of Alaska's muskoxen. Inuit hunters apparently killed the last muskoxen in northwestern Alaska in the late 1850s. Several accounts suggest that remnant herds survived in the eastern Brooks Range into the 1890s. However, there is no physical evidence or independent confirmation of these reports. Oral traditions regarding muskoxen survived among the Nunamiut and the Chandalar Kutchin. With human help, muskoxen have successfully recolonized their former range from the Seward Peninsula north, across the Arctic Slope and east into the northern Yukon Territory.

  6. Review of technology for Arctic offshore oil and gas recovery. Appendices

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sackinger, W. M.

    1980-06-06

    This volume contains appendices of the following: US Geological Survey Arctic operating orders, 1979; Det Noske Vertas', rules for the design, construction and inspection of offshore technology, 1977; Alaska Oil and Gas Association, industry research projects, March 1980; Arctic Petroleum Operator's Association, industry research projects, January 1980; selected additional Arctic offshore bibliography on sea ice, icebreakers, Arctic seafloor conditions, ice-structures, frost heave and structure icing.

  7. Paleoenvironmental interpretation of an ancient Arctic coastal plain: Integrated paleopedology and palynology from the Late Cretaceous (Maastrichtian) Prince Creek Formation, North Slope, Alaska, USA

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCarthy, P. J.; Flaig, P. P.; Fiorillo, A. R.

    2010-12-01

    The Cretaceous (Early Maastrichtian), dinosaur-bearing Prince Creek Formation, North Slope, Alaska, records high-latitude, alluvial sedimentation and soil formation on a low-lying, coastal plain during a greenhouse phase in Earth history. This study combines outcrop observations, micromorphology, geochemistry, and palynological analyses of paleosols in order to reconstruct local paleoenvironments of weakly developed, high-latitude coastal plain soils. Sediments of the Prince Creek Fm. include quartz- and chert-rich sandstone channels, and floodplains containing organic-rich siltstone and mudstone, carbonaceous shale, coal and ashfall deposits. Vertically stacked horizons of blocky-to-platy, drab-colored mudstone and siltstone with carbonaceous root-traces and mottled aggregates alternating with sandy units indicate that the development of compound and cumulative, weakly-developed soils on floodplains alternated with overbank alluviation and deposition on crevasse splay complexes on floodplains . Soil formation occurred on levees, point bars, crevasse splays and along the margins of floodplain lakes, ponds, and swamps. Soil-forming processes were interrupted by repeated deposition of sediment on top of soil profiles by flooding of nearby channels. Alluviation is evidenced by thin (coatings, and zoned peds suggest periodic waterlogging, anoxia and gleying. In contrast, Fe-oxide mottles, ferruginous and manganiferous segregations, burrows, and rare illuvial clay coatings suggest recurring oxidation and periodic drying out of some soils. Jarosite mottles and halos, and rare pyrite and gypsum found in some distal paleosols implies a marine influence at the distal margins of the coastal plain. Biota including Peridinioid dinocysts, brackish and freshwater algae, fungal hyphae, fern and moss spores, projectates, age-diagnostic Wodehouseia edmontonicola, hinterland bisaccate pollen and pollen from lowland trees, shrubs, and herbs indicate an Early Maastrichtian age for

  8. Leaf Tissue C:N and Soil N are Modified by Growing Season and Goose Grazing Phenology in a Sub-Arctic Coastal Wetland of Western Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, R. T.; Beard, K. H.; Leffler, A. J.; Schmutz, J. A.; Welker, J. M.

    2014-12-01

    Climate change in Arctic wetlands is resulting in a widening phenological mismatch between the onset of the growing season and the arrival and hatch date of migratory geese, the primary consumers in the system. During the past three decades, the growing season has advanced but geese have not advanced arrival or hatch date at the same rate. Geese now arrive into a system that has been growing longer than in the past with potential changes in forage quality because sedges have their highest nutrient density shortly following emergence. One potential concomitant result of this phenological gap is altered carbon to nitrogen ratio (C:N) of leaf tissue being returned to the ecosystem as feces that is more N-poor. Altering the C:N of these inputs can further influence C and N cycling in the system. We examine the influence of advanced growing season and different arrival times by black brant on leaf and soil C:N ratio and soil N-form. Our experiment consists of six blocks with nine study plots each. Half the plots are warmed to advance the growing season. Two plots each receive early, typical, late, and no grazing; one plot is a control that is not warmed and grazing is natural. Leaf tissue was collected to determine C and N concentration using an elemental analyzer. Anion and cation exchange membranes were used to monitor inorganic N forms in soil; samples were analyzed via fluorescence following extraction. Soil water collected from lysimeters was analyzed for organic N. Warming advanced plant growth between one and two weeks and resulted in higher C:N of leaf tissue Geese maintained 'grazing lawns', areas of exceptionally short vegetation, where plants had high N compared to non-grazed areas. Grazing early in the season promoted higher N content of leaves and soil while grazing late had little influence on N. The timing of the growing season and grazing both have important implications for C and N in this system.

  9. Recent Changes in the Arctic Melt Season

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stroeve, Julienne; Markus, Thorsten; Meier, Walter N.; Miller, Jeff

    2007-01-01

    Melt-season duration, melt-onset and freeze-up dates are derived from satellite passive microwave data and analyzed from 1979 to 2005 over Arctic sea ice. Results indicate a shift towards a longer melt season, particularly north of Alaska and Siberia, corresponding to large retreats of sea ice observed in these regions. Although there is large interannual and regional variability in the length of the melt season, the Arctic is experiencing an overall lengthening of the melt season at a rate of about 2 weeks decade(sup -1). In fact, all regions in the Arctic (except for the central Arctic) have statistically significant (at the 99% level or higher) longer melt seasons by greater than 1 week decade(sup -1). The central Arctic shows a statistically significant trend (at the 98% level) of 5.4 days decade(sup -1). In 2005 the Arctic experienced its longest melt season, corresponding with the least amount of sea ice since 1979 and the warmest temperatures since the 1880s. Overall, the length of the melt season is inversely correlated with the lack of sea ice seen in September north of Alaska and Siberia, with a mean correlation of -0.8.

  10. Coordination and Convening of the 2016 Arctic Science Summit Week

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hinzman, Larry D. [Univ. of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK (United States)

    2016-11-13

    The Arctic Science Summit Week, Arctic Observing Summit, Arctic Council Senior Arctic Officials, Model Arctic Council, and International Arctic Assembly were convened on the campus of the University of Alaska Fairbanks with great productivity and satisfaction of the participants. We were pleased to welcome over 1000 participants from 30 different nations and over 130 different institutions. The organization and execution of these meetings was extensive and complex involving more than 250 coordinators, volunteers and contributors from across Alaska. The participants were enthusiastic in their praise of the content and accomplishments of the meeting, but they were equally happy about the genuine welcome offered to our guests by the people of Alaska. Hosting a complex event such as this summit required an army of supporting services and we were blessed to have volunteers from Fairbanks, North Pole, Anchorage and other communities throughout Alaska helping us meet these needs. This truly was an event hosted by the people of Alaska. The significance of these events cannot be overstated. The US and global communities are finally coming to the realization of the important role that the Arctic plays in international politics, economics, and science. The Arctic has experienced tremendous changes in recent years, offering new opportunities that may be addressed through international collaborations, and serious challenges that must be addressed through active investment, adaptation and national and international coordination. Over 10% of the meeting participants were indigenous peoples, from indigenous organizations or hailed from small remote communities. This is still lower than we had hoped, but it is greater participation than similar meetings have experienced in the past. It is through such engagement that we can attack problems related to the changing environment, stagnant economies, and social ills.

  11. Cystic echinococcosis in the Arctic and Sub-Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rausch, R L

    2003-01-01

    The northern biotype of Echinococcus granulosus occurs throughout the holarctic zones of tundra and taiga, from eastern Fennoscandia to the Bering Strait in Eurasia and in North America from arctic Alaska approximately to the northern border of the United States. The cycle of the cestode is complex in taiga at lower latitudes, because of the greater diversity of potential hosts. In the Arctic and Subarctic, however, four patterns of predator/prey relationships may be discerned. Two natural cycles involve the wolf and wild reindeer and the wolf and elk (moose), respectively. Where deer of the two species coexist, both are prey of the wolf; the interactions of the wolf and elk are here described on the basis of long-term observations made on Isle Royale (in Lake Superior near the southern limit of taiga), where only the wolf and elk serve as hosts for E. granulosus. A synanthropic cycle involving herding-dogs and domesticated reindeer caused hyperendemicity of cystic echinococcosis in arctic Eurasia, mainly in northeastern Siberia. The 4th pattern, a semi-synanthropic cycle, formerly existed in Alaska, wherein sled-dogs of the indigenous hunters became infected by consuming the lungs of wild reindeer. The sequence of changes in life-style inherent in the process of acculturation affected the occurrence of cystic echinococcosis among nomadic Iñupiat in arctic Alaska. When those people became sedentary, the environs of their early villages soon became severely contaminated by faeces of dogs, and cases of cystic echinococcosis occurred. Compared to cystic echinococcosis caused by E. granulosus adapted to synanthropic hosts (dog and domestic ungulates), the infection produced by the northern biotype is relatively benign. Nearly all diagnosed cases of cystic echinococcosis (> 300) in Alaska have occurred in indigenous people; only one fatality has been recorded (in a non-indigenous person). After sled-dogs were replaced by machines, cases have become rare in Alaska. A

  12. Adaptation in Arctic circumpolar communities: food and water security in a changing climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berner, James; Brubaker, Michael; Revitch, Boris; Kreummel, Eva; Tcheripanoff, Moses; Bell, Jake

    2016-01-01

    The AMAP Human Health Assessment Group has developed different adaptation strategies through a long-term collaboration with all Arctic countries. Different adaptation strategies are discussed, with examples mainly from native population groups in Alaska.

  13. Patterns of lake occupancy by fish indicate different adaptations to life in a harsh Arctic environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haynes, Trevor B.; Rosenberger, Amanda E.; Lindberg, Mark S.; Whitman, Matthew; Schmutz, Joel A.

    2014-01-01

    Summary For six fish species sampled from 86 lakes on the Arctic Coastal Plain, Alaska, we examined whether lake occupancy was related to variables representing lake size, colonisation potential and/or the presence of overwintering habitat.

  14. Arctic methane

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dyupina, E.; Amstel, van A.R.

    2013-01-01

    What are the risks of a runaway greenhouse effect from methane release from hydrates in the Arctic? In January 2013, a dramatic increase of methane concentration up to 2000 ppb has been measured over the Arctic north of Norway in the Barents Sea. The global average being 1750 ppb. It has been

  15. Arctic Newcomers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tonami, Aki

    2013-01-01

    Interest in the Arctic region and its economic potential in Japan, South Korea and Singapore was slow to develop but is now rapidly growing. All three countries have in recent years accelerated their engagement with Arctic states, laying the institutional frameworks needed to better understand...

  16. Cost Estimation for Surface Navy Investment in Arctic-capable Platform to Maintain National Security Interests

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-12-01

    border and the northern coast of Alaska. Both of these routes utilize the Bering Strait between Alaska and Russia, but they represent the highways of...Arctic is Everett, which is approximately 1800nm, roughly a five-day transit from the Bering Strait (Tomaszek et al., 2014). Further to the north is...stores/parts in the Bering Sea and surrounding Arctic area would require additional services such as fuel barges or air support while anchored (OUSD(P

  17. CARVE: The Carbon in Arctic Reservoirs Vulnerability Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Charles E.; Dinardo, Steven J.

    2012-01-01

    The Carbon in Arctic Reservoirs Vulnerability Experiment (CARVE) is a NASA Earth Ventures (EV-1) investigation designed to quantify correlations between atmospheric and surface state variables for the Alaskan terrestrial ecosystems through intensive seasonal aircraft campaigns, ground-based observations, and analysis sustained over a 5-year mission. CARVE bridges critical gaps in our knowledge and understanding of Arctic ecosystems, linkages between the Arctic hydrologic and terrestrial carbon cycles, and the feedbacks from fires and thawing permafrost. CARVE's objectives are to: (1) Directly test hypotheses attributing the mobilization of vulnerable Arctic carbon reservoirs to climate warming; (2) Deliver the first direct measurements and detailed maps of CO2 and CH4 sources on regional scales in the Alaskan Arctic; and (3) Demonstrate new remote sensing and modeling capabilities to quantify feedbacks between carbon fluxes and carbon cycle-climate processes in the Arctic (Figure 1). We describe the investigation design and results from 2011 test flights in Alaska.

  18. Global climate model performance over Alaska and Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Walsh, John E.; Chapman, William L.; Romanovsky, Vladimir

    2008-01-01

    The performance of a set of 15 global climate models used in the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project is evaluated for Alaska and Greenland, and compared with the performance over broader pan-Arctic and Northern Hemisphere extratropical domains. Root-mean-square errors relative to the 1958...... of the models are generally much larger than the biases of the composite output, indicating that the systematic errors differ considerably among the models. There is a tendency for the models with smaller errors to simulate a larger greenhouse warming over the Arctic, as well as larger increases of Arctic...... to narrowing the uncertainty and obtaining more robust estimates of future climate change in regions such as Alaska, Greenland, and the broader Arctic....

  19. Partial pressure (or fugacity) of carbon dioxide, salinity and other variables collected from Surface underway observations using Carbon dioxide (CO2) gas analyzer, Shower head chamber equilibrator for autonomous carbon dioxide (CO2) measurement and other instruments from HEALY in the Arctic Ocean, Beaufort Sea and others from 2015-07-14 to 2015-10-28 (NCEI Accession 0144530)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — NCEI Accession 0144530 includes Surface underway data collected from HEALY in the Arctic Ocean, Beaufort Sea, Bering Sea, Coastal Waters of SE Alaska, Gulf of Alaska...

  20. 76 FR 21404 - National Park Service Alaska Region's Subsistence Resource Commission (SRC) Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-04-15

    ... National Park Service National Park Service Alaska Region's Subsistence Resource Commission (SRC) Program... Alaska Region's Subsistence Resource Commission (SRC) program. SUMMARY: The Gates of the Arctic National Park SRC will meet to develop and continue work on National Park Service (NPS) subsistence hunting...

  1. Temperature and chemical data from CTD casts in the Gulf of Alaska as part of the Arctic Ice Dynamics Joint EXperiment (AIDJEX) project, from 11 November 1980 to 21 November 1980 (NODC Accession 0000212)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — Temperature profile and chemical data were collected using CTD casts from the R/V ALPHA HELIX in the Gulf of Alaska from 11 November 1980 to 21 November 1980. Data...

  2. 2nd International Arctic Ungulate Conference

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Anonymous

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available The 2nd International Arctic Ungulate Conference was held 13-17 August 1995 on the University of Alaska Fairbanks campus. The Institute of Arctic Biology and the Alaska Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit were responsible for organizing the conference with assistance from biologists with state and federal agencies and commercial organizations. David R. Klein was chair of the conference organizing committee. Over 200 people attended the conference, coming from 10 different countries. The United States, Canada, and Norway had the largest representation. The conference included invited lectures; panel discussions, and about 125 contributed papers. There were five technical sessions on Physiology and Body Condition; Habitat Relationships; Population Dynamics and Management; Behavior, Genetics and Evolution; and Reindeer and Muskox Husbandry. Three panel sessions discussed Comparative caribou management strategies; Management of introduced, reestablished, and expanding muskox populations; and Health risks in translocation of arctic ungulates. Invited lectures focused on the physiology and population dynamics of arctic ungulates; contaminants in food chains of arctic ungulates and lessons learned from the Chernobyl accident; and ecosystem level relationships of the Porcupine Caribou Herd.

  3. Advancing NOAA NWS Arctic Program Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Timofeyeva-Livezey, M. M.; Horsfall, F. M. C.; Meyers, J. C.; Churma, M.; Thoman, R.

    2016-12-01

    Environmental changes in the Arctic require changes in the way the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) delivers hydrological and meteorological information to prepare the region's societies and indigenous population for emerging challenges. These challenges include changing weather patterns, changes in the timing and extent of sea ice, accelerated soil erosion due to permafrost decline, increasing coastal vulnerably, and changes in the traditional food supply. The decline in Arctic sea ice is opening new opportunities for exploitation of natural resources, commerce, tourism, and military interest. These societal challenges and economic opportunities call for a NOAA integrated approach for delivery of environmental information including climate, water, and weather data, forecasts, and warnings. Presently the NOAA Arctic Task Force provides leadership in programmatic coordination across NOAA line offices. National Weather Service (NWS) Alaska Region and the National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) provide the foundational operational hydro-meteorological products and services in the Arctic. Starting in 2016, NOAA's NWS will work toward improving its role in programmatic coordination and development through assembling an NWS Arctic Task Team. The team will foster ties in the Arctic between the 11 NWS national service programs in climate, water, and weather information, as well as between Arctic programs in NWS and other NOAA line offices and external partners. One of the team outcomes is improving decision support tools for the Arctic. The Local Climate Analysis Tool (LCAT) currently has more than 1100 registered users, including NOAA staff and technical partners. The tool has been available online since 2013 (http://nws.weather.gov/lcat/ ). The tool links trusted, recommended NOAA data and analytical capabilities to assess impacts of climate variability and climate change at local levels. A new capability currently being developed will

  4. Environmental marine geology of the Arctic Ocean

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mudie, P.J.

    1991-01-01

    The Arctic Ocean and its ice cover are major regulators of Northern Hemisphere climate, ocean circulation and marine productivity. The Arctic is also very sensitive to changes in the global environment because sea ice magnifies small changes in temperature, and because polar regions are sinks for air pollutants. Marine geology studies are being carried out to determine the nature and rate of these environmental changes by study of modem ice and sea-bed environments, and by interpretation of geological records imprinted in the sea-floor sediments. Sea ice camps, an ice island, and polar icebreakers have been used to study both western and eastern Arctic Ocean basins. Possible early warning signals of environmental changes in the Canadian Arctic are die-back in Arctic sponge reefs, outbreaks of toxic dinoflagellates, and pesticides in the marine food chain. Eastern Arctic ice and surface waters are contaminated by freon and radioactive fallout from Chernobyl. At present, different sedimentary processes operate in the pack ice-covered Canadian polar margin than in summer open waters off Alaska and Eurasia. The geological records, however, suggest that a temperature increase of 1-4 degree C would result in summer open water throughout the Arctic, with major changes in ocean circulation and productivity of waters off Eastern North America, and more widespread transport of pollutants from eastern to western Arctic basins. More studies of longer sediment cores are needed to confirm these interpretations, but is is now clear that the Arctic Ocean has been the pacemaker of climate change during the past 1 million years

  5. Arctic gas projects : an overview

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harbour, D. [Harbour Co., Anchorage, AK (United States)

    2002-07-01

    The true wealth of the North lies in decisions and conduct of major resource owners and developers. Indigenous people and governments are in general, the largest resource owners in North America, while resource companies have the know-how and money to convert natural resources into wealth. The author notes that the government's role is to enforce proper resource extraction and to provide service to citizens. The challenge is to maintain a balance between these 2 roles. The paper focuses on northern gas pipelines, which if developed properly, can offer a wealth of benefits by moving natural gas resources from northern discovery locations to southern markets. It is emphasized that incentives for resource companies will be diminished if governments take too much of the wealth or if regulations are excessive. Similarly, if companies ignore cultural values, they will find relationships with resource owners and governments difficult. This paper presents the following examples of cooperation between government and First Nations: (1) the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, which cleared the way for the Alaska Oil Pipeline, (2) Mackenzie Delta and Prudhoe Bay producers who joined with major North American pipeline companies to form Arctic Gas, (3) the evolution of aboriginal involvement in gas pipeline projects, and (4) Canadian and United States governmental decisions. The paper also describes new and old competitors and alliances in the spring of 2002 and presents a look at subtle political influences. The current project status of the Mackenzie Delta producers is also described. Alaska North Slope Natives have expressed opposition to the northern, submarine route. Alaska has introduced a reserves tax bill which could provide the state most of its fund deficit, but which may render the state less investor friendly. The Mackenzie Valley Pipeline has gathered momentum, but it is not without challenges. It would appear that freeing Alaska gas is now less certain. 7

  6. The impact of Greenland's deglaciation on the Arctic circulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dethloff, K.; Dorn, W.; Rinke, A.

    2004-01-01

    . The land areas over Siberia and the Canadian archipelago are warmed by up to 5°C. Parts of the Atlantic and the Arctic Ocean are cooled by up to 3°C. A north-eastward shift of the storm tracks occurs over the North Atlantic as well as an increase of synoptic activity over Alaska. The pronounced P-E changes...... connected with shifts in the synoptic storm tracks during winter would have important consequences for the atmospheric freshwater input into the Arctic Ocean and the Nordic sea with the potential to cause variability in the Arctic Ocean dynamics on centennial to millennial time scales. The significant...... differences between simulations with and without Greenland result in a decrease of the geopotential height and a dominant barotropic response of the Arctic atmosphere. These changes correspond to an enhanced winter polar vortex and stratospheric conditions more favorable for large Arctic ozone losses....

  7. Arctic Security

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Nils

    2013-01-01

    The inclusion of China, India, Japan, Singapore and Italy as permanent observers in the Arctic Council has increased the international status of this forum significantly. This chapter aims to explain the background for the increased international interest in the Arctic region through an analysis...... of the general security situation and to identify both the explicit and the implicit agendas of the primary state actors. The region contains all the ingredients for confrontation and conflict but the economical potential for all the parties concerned creates a general interest in dialogue and cooperation...

  8. 76 FR 57763 - Alaska Region's Subsistence Resource Commission (SRC) Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-09-16

    ... authorized under Title VIII, Section 808 of the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act, Public Law... Meeting Dates and Location: The Gates of the Arctic National Park SRC will meet at Sophie Station Hotel... Thursday, November 10, 2011, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. or as soon a business is completed. For Further...

  9. Ocean currents shape the microbiome of Arctic marine sediments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hamdan, L.J.; Coffin, R.B.; Sikaroodi, M.; Greinert, J.; Treude, T.; Gillevet, P.M.

    2013-01-01

    Prokaryote communities were investigated on the seasonally stratified Alaska Beaufort Shelf (ABS). Water and sediment directly underlying water with origin in the Arctic, Pacific or Atlantic oceans were analyzed by pyrosequencing and length heterogeneity-PCR in conjunction with physicochemical and

  10. Impact assessment of offshore oil activities in the Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Sanne Vammen; Hansen, Anne Merrild

    2016-01-01

    The global demand for oil and gas has lead to a notable increase in interest for oil and gas exploration in the Arctic. This paper presents the results of a comparative study of the legislation for impact assessment in Greenland, Denmark, Norway, Alaska (USA) and Canada. The point of departure...

  11. Identifying Differences in Carbon Exchange among Arctic Ecosystem Types

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Williams, M.; Street, L.E.; Wijk, van M.T.; Shaver, G.R.

    2006-01-01

    Our objective was to determine how varied is the response of C cycling to temperature and irradiance in tundra vegetation. We used a large chamber to measure C exchange at 23 locations within a small arctic catchment in Alaska during summer 2003 and 2004. At each location, we determined light

  12. Arctic pathways of Pacific Water: Arctic Ocean Model Intercomparison experiments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aksenov, Yevgeny; Karcher, Michael; Proshutinsky, Andrey; Gerdes, Rüdiger; de Cuevas, Beverly; Golubeva, Elena; Kauker, Frank; Nguyen, An T; Platov, Gennady A; Wadley, Martin; Watanabe, Eiji; Coward, Andrew C; Nurser, A J George

    2016-01-01

    Pacific Water (PW) enters the Arctic Ocean through Bering Strait and brings in heat, fresh water, and nutrients from the northern Bering Sea. The circulation of PW in the central Arctic Ocean is only partially understood due to the lack of observations. In this paper, pathways of PW are investigated using simulations with six state-of-the art regional and global Ocean General Circulation Models (OGCMs). In the simulations, PW is tracked by a passive tracer, released in Bering Strait. Simulated PW spreads from the Bering Strait region in three major branches. One of them starts in the Barrow Canyon, bringing PW along the continental slope of Alaska into the Canadian Straits and then into Baffin Bay. The second begins in the vicinity of the Herald Canyon and transports PW along the continental slope of the East Siberian Sea into the Transpolar Drift, and then through Fram Strait and the Greenland Sea. The third branch begins near the Herald Shoal and the central Chukchi shelf and brings PW into the Beaufort Gyre. In the models, the wind, acting via Ekman pumping, drives the seasonal and interannual variability of PW in the Canadian Basin of the Arctic Ocean. The wind affects the simulated PW pathways by changing the vertical shear of the relative vorticity of the ocean flow in the Canada Basin.

  13. Arctic pathways of Pacific Water: Arctic Ocean Model Intercomparison experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karcher, Michael; Proshutinsky, Andrey; Gerdes, Rüdiger; de Cuevas, Beverly; Golubeva, Elena; Kauker, Frank; Nguyen, An T.; Platov, Gennady A.; Wadley, Martin; Watanabe, Eiji; Coward, Andrew C.; Nurser, A. J. George

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Pacific Water (PW) enters the Arctic Ocean through Bering Strait and brings in heat, fresh water, and nutrients from the northern Bering Sea. The circulation of PW in the central Arctic Ocean is only partially understood due to the lack of observations. In this paper, pathways of PW are investigated using simulations with six state‐of‐the art regional and global Ocean General Circulation Models (OGCMs). In the simulations, PW is tracked by a passive tracer, released in Bering Strait. Simulated PW spreads from the Bering Strait region in three major branches. One of them starts in the Barrow Canyon, bringing PW along the continental slope of Alaska into the Canadian Straits and then into Baffin Bay. The second begins in the vicinity of the Herald Canyon and transports PW along the continental slope of the East Siberian Sea into the Transpolar Drift, and then through Fram Strait and the Greenland Sea. The third branch begins near the Herald Shoal and the central Chukchi shelf and brings PW into the Beaufort Gyre. In the models, the wind, acting via Ekman pumping, drives the seasonal and interannual variability of PW in the Canadian Basin of the Arctic Ocean. The wind affects the simulated PW pathways by changing the vertical shear of the relative vorticity of the ocean flow in the Canada Basin. PMID:27818853

  14. Analysis of the Warmest Arctic Winter, 2015-2016

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cullather, Richard I.; Lim, Young-Kwon; Boisvert, Linette N.; Brucker, Ludovic; Lee, Jae N.; Nowicki, Sophie M. J.

    2016-01-01

    December through February 2015-2016 defines the warmest winter season over the Arctic in the observational record. Positive 2m temperature anomalies were focused over regions of reduced sea ice cover in the Kara and Barents Seas and southwestern Alaska. A third region is found over the ice-covered central Arctic Ocean. The period is marked by a strong synoptic pattern which produced melting temperatures in close proximity to the North Pole in late December and anomalous high pressure near the Taymyr Peninsula. Atmospheric teleconnections from the Atlantic contributed to warming over Eurasian high-latitude land surfaces, and El Niño-related teleconnections explain warming over southwestern Alaska and British Columbia, while warm anomalies over the central Arctic are associated with physical processes including the presence of enhanced atmospheric water vapor and an increased downwelling longwave radiative flux. Preconditioning of sea ice conditions by warm temperatures affected the ensuing spring extent.

  15. SEARCH: Study of Environmental Arctic Change-A System-scale, Cross-disciplinary Arctic Research Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiggins, H. V.; Eicken, H.; Fox, S. E.; Search Science Steering Committee

    2011-12-01

    SEARCH is an interdisciplinary and interagency program that works with academic and government agency scientists to plan, conduct, and synthesize studies of arctic change. The vision of SEARCH is to provide scientific understanding of arctic environmental change to help society understand and respond to a rapidly changing Arctic. Towards this end, SEARCH: (1) Generates and synthesizes research findings and promotes arctic science and scientific discovery across disciplines and among agencies. (2) Identifies emerging issues in arctic environmental change. (3) Provides information resources to arctic stakeholders, policy-makers, and the public to help them respond to arctic environmental change. (4) Coordinates with national arctic science programs integral to SEARCH goals. (5) Facilitates research activities across local-to-global scales with stakeholder concerns incorporated from the start of the planning process. (6) Represents the U.S. arctic environmental change science community in international and global change research initiatives. Examples of specific SEARCH activities include: (1) Arctic Observing Network (AON) - a system of atmospheric, land- and ocean-based environmental monitoring capabilities that will significantly advance our observations of arctic environmental conditions. (2) Arctic Sea Ice Outlook - an international effort that provides monthly summer reports synthesizing community estimates of the expected sea ice minimum. (3) Sea Ice for Walrus Outlook - a resource for Alaska Native subsistence hunters, coastal communities, and others that provides weekly reports with information on sea ice conditions relevant to walrus in Alaska waters. (4) Developing recommendations for an interagency "Understanding Arctic Change" program. In addition to the above activities, SEARCH is also currently undertaking a strategic planning process to define priority goals and objectives for the next 3-5 years. SEARCH is guided by a Science Steering Committee and

  16. CSI : Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Letwin, S.

    2005-01-01

    This presentation emphasized the need for northern gas supply at a time when conventional natural gas supplies are decreasing and demand is growing. It highlighted the unique qualifications of Enbridge Inc. in creating an infrastructure to move the supply to where it is in most demand. Enbridge has substantial northern experience and has a unique approach for the construction of the Alaskan Gas Pipeline which entails cooperation, stability and innovation (CSI). Enbridge's role in the joint venture with AltaGas and Inuvialuit Petroleum was discussed along with its role in the construction of the first Canadian pipeline in 1985. The 540 mile pipeline was buried in permafrost. A large percentage of Enbridge employees are of indigenous descent. Enbridge recognizes that the amount of capital investment and the associated risk needed for the Alaska Gas Pipeline will necessitate a partnership of producers, pipeline companies, Native organizations, the State of Alaska, market participants and other interested parties. 9 figs

  17. Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) Atlas: Southeast Alaska - volume 1, geographic information systems data and volume 2, maps in portable document format (NODC Accession 0046029)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This data set comprises the Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) data for Northwest Arctic, Alaska. ESI data characterize estuarine environments and wildlife by...

  18. Arctic Observing Experiment (AOX) Field Campaign Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rigor, Ignatius [Applied Physics Lab, University of Washington; Johnson, Jim [Applied Physics Lab, University of Washington; Motz, Emily [National Ice Center; Bisic, Aaron [National Ice Center

    2017-06-30

    Our ability to understand and predict weather and climate requires an accurate observing network. One of the pillars of this network is the observation of the fundamental meteorological parameters: temperature, air pressure, and wind. We plan to assess our ability to measure these parameters for the polar regions during the Arctic Observing Experiment (AOX, Figure 1) to support the International Arctic Buoy Programme (IABP), Arctic Observing Network (AON), International Program for Antarctic Buoys (IPAB), and Southern Ocean Observing System (SOOS). Accurate temperature measurements are also necessary to validate and improve satellite measurements of surface temperature across the Arctic. Support for research associated with the campaign is provided by the National Science Foundation, and by other US agencies contributing to the US Interagency Arctic Buoy Program. In addition to the support provided by the U.S Department of Energy (DOE) Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Climate Research Facility’s North Slope of Alaska (NSA) site at Barrow and the National Science Foundation (NSF), the U.S. IABP is supported by the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the National Ice Center (NIC), the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the Office of Naval Research (ONR).

  19. Climate strategies: thinking through Arctic examples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bodenhorn, Barbara; Ulturgasheva, Olga

    2017-05-01

    Frequent and unpredictable extreme weather events in Siberia and Alaska destroy infrastructure and threaten the livelihoods of circumpolar peoples. Local responses are inventive and flexible. However, the distinct politics of post-Soviet Siberia and Alaska play a key role in the pragmatics of strategic planning. The Arctic is a planetary climate driver, but also holds the promise of massive resources in an ice-free future, producing tensions between `environmental' and `development' goals. Drawing on material from Siberia and Alaska we argue: (i) that extreme events in the Arctic are becoming normal; material demands are in a state of flux making it difficult to assess future material needs. We must consider material substitutions as much as material reduction; (ii) local-level responsive strategies should be taken into account. Core/periphery thinking tends to assume that answers come from `the centre'; this is, in our view, limited; (iii) we suggest that `flexibility' may become a core survival value that is as important for city planners and public health officials as it is for Siberian reindeer herders. In this, we see not only the simultaneous need for mitigation and adaptation policies, but also for a concerted effort in promoting such capacities in young people. This article is part of the themed issue 'Material demand reduction'.

  20. Age, distribution and style of deformation in Alaska north of 60°N: Implications for assembly of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Thomas E.; Box, Stephen E.

    2016-11-01

    The structural architecture of Alaska is the product of a complex history of deformation along both the Cordilleran and Arctic margins of North America involving oceanic plates, subduction zones and strike-slip faults and with continental elements of Laurentia, Baltica, and Siberia. We use geological constraints to assign regions of deformation to 14 time intervals and to map their distributions in Alaska. Alaska can be divided into three domains with differing deformational histories. Each domain includes a crustal fragment that originated near Early Paleozoic Baltica. The Northern domain experienced the Early Cretaceous Brookian orogeny, an oceanic arc-continent collision, followed by mid-Cretaceous extension. Early Cretaceous opening of the oceanic Canada Basin rifted the orogen from the Canadian Arctic margin, producing the bent trends of the orogen. The second (Southern) domain consists of Neoproterozoic and younger crust of the amalgamated Peninsular-Wrangellia-Alexander arc terrane and its paired Mesozoic accretionary prism facing the Pacific Ocean basin. The third (Interior) domain, situated between the first two domains and roughly bounded by the Cenozoic dextral Denali and Tintina faults, includes the large continental Yukon Composite and Farewell terranes having different Permian deformational episodes. Although a shared deformation that might mark their juxtaposition by collisional processes is unrecognized, sedimentary linkage between the two terranes and depositional overlap of the boundary with the Northern domain occurred by early Late Cretaceous. Late Late Cretaceous deformation is the first deformation shared by all three domains and correlates temporally with emplacement of the Southern domain against the remainder of Alaska. Early Cenozoic shortening is mild across interior Alaska but is significant in the Brooks Range, and correlates in time with dextral faulting, ridge subduction and counter-clockwise rotation of southern Alaska. Late Cenozoic

  1. Arctic summer school onboard an icebreaker

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexeev, Vladimir A.; Repina, Irina A.

    2014-05-01

    The International Arctic Research Center (IARC) of the University of Alaska Fairbanks conducted a summer school for PhD students, post-docs and early career scientists in August-September 2013, jointly with an arctic expedition as a part of NABOS project (Nansen and Amundsen Basin Observational System) onboard the Russian research vessel "Akademik Fedorov". Both the summer school and NABOS expedition were funded by the National Science Foundation. The one-month long summer school brought together graduate students and young scientists with specialists in arctic oceanography and climate to convey to a new generation of scientists the opportunities and challenges of arctic climate observations and modeling. Young scientists gained hands-on experience during the field campaign and learned about key issues in arctic climate from observational, diagnostic, and modeling perspectives. The summer school consisted of background lectures, participation in fieldwork and mini-projects. The mini-projects were performed in collaboration with summer school instructors and members of the expedition. Key topics covered in the lectures included: - arctic climate: key characteristics and processes; - physical processes in the Arctic Ocean; - sea ice and the Arctic Ocean; - trace gases, aerosols, and chemistry: importance for climate changes; - feedbacks in the arctic system (e.g., surface albedo, clouds, water vapor, circulation); - arctic climate variations: past, ongoing, and projected; - global climate models: an overview. An outreach specialist from the Miami Science Museum was writing a blog from the icebreaker with some very impressive statistics (results as of January 1, 2014): Total number of blog posts: 176 Blog posts written/contributed by scientists: 42 Blog views: 22,684 Comments: 1,215 Number of countries who viewed the blog: 89 (on 6 continents) The 33-day long NABOS expedition started on August 22, 2013 from Kirkenes, Norway. The vessel ("Akademik Fedorov") returned to

  2. ArcticDEM Validation and Accuracy Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Candela, S. G.; Howat, I.; Noh, M. J.; Porter, C. C.; Morin, P. J.

    2017-12-01

    ArcticDEM comprises a growing inventory Digital Elevation Models (DEMs) covering all land above 60°N. As of August, 2017, ArcticDEM had openly released 2-m resolution, individual DEM covering over 51 million km2, which includes areas of repeat coverage for change detection, as well as over 15 million km2 of 5-m resolution seamless mosaics. By the end of the project, over 80 million km2 of 2-m DEMs will be produced, averaging four repeats of the 20 million km2 Arctic landmass. ArcticDEM is produced from sub-meter resolution, stereoscopic imagery using open source software (SETSM) on the NCSA Blue Waters supercomputer. These DEMs have known biases of several meters due to errors in the sensor models generated from satellite positioning. These systematic errors are removed through three-dimensional registration to high-precision Lidar or other control datasets. ArcticDEM is registered to seasonally-subsetted ICESat elevations due its global coverage and high report accuracy ( 10 cm). The vertical accuracy of ArcticDEM is then obtained from the statistics of the fit to the ICESat point cloud, which averages -0.01 m ± 0.07 m. ICESat, however, has a relatively coarse measurement footprint ( 70 m) which may impact the precision of the registration. Further, the ICESat data predates the ArcticDEM imagery by a decade, so that temporal changes in the surface may also impact the registration. Finally, biases may exist between different the different sensors in the ArcticDEM constellation. Here we assess the accuracy of ArcticDEM and the ICESat registration through comparison to multiple high-resolution airborne lidar datasets that were acquired within one year of the imagery used in ArcticDEM. We find the ICESat dataset is performing as anticipated, introducing no systematic bias during the coregistration process, and reducing vertical errors to within the uncertainty of the airborne Lidars. Preliminary sensor comparisons show no significant difference post coregistration

  3. Hydrological Modeling in Alaska with WRF-Hydro

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elmer, N. J.; Zavodsky, B.; Molthan, A.

    2017-12-01

    The operational National Water Model (NWM), implemented in August 2016, is an instantiation of the Weather Research and Forecasting hydrological extension package (WRF-Hydro). Currently, the NWM only covers the contiguous United States, but will be expanded to include an Alaska domain in the future. It is well known that Alaska presents several hydrological modeling challenges, including unique arctic/sub-arctic hydrological processes not observed elsewhere in the United States and a severe lack of in-situ observations for model initialization. This project sets up an experimental version of WRF-Hydro in Alaska mimicking the NWM to gauge the ability of WRF-Hydro to represent hydrological processes in Alaska and identify model calibration challenges. Recent and upcoming launches of hydrology-focused NASA satellite missions such as the Soil Moisture Active Passive (SMAP) and Surface Water Ocean Topography (SWOT) expand the spatial and temporal coverage of observations in Alaska, so this study also lays the groundwork for assimilating these NASA datasets into WRF-Hydro in the future.

  4. Changing Arctic ecosystems: sea ice decline, permafrost thaw, and benefits for geese

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flint, Paul; Whalen, Mary; Pearce, John M.

    2014-01-01

    Through the Changing Arctic Ecosystems (CAE) initiative, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) strives to inform resource management decisions for Arctic Alaska by providing scientific information on current and future ecosystem response to a warming climate. A key area for the USGS CAE initiative has been the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska. This region has experienced a warming trend over the past 30 years, leading to reductions in sea ice and thawing of permafrost. Loss of sea ice has increased ocean wave action, leading to erosion and salt water inundation of coastal habitats. Saltwater tolerant plants are now thriving in these areas and this appears to be a positive outcome for geese in the Arctic. This finding is contrary to the deleterious effects that declining sea ice is having on habitats of ice-dependent animals, such as polar bear and walrus.

  5. A survey of radioactive fallout data in Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    DePhillips, M.P.

    1995-01-01

    Considerable attention has been directed by the scientific community to assessing the levels and fate of radionuclides in Arctic ecosystems. The following text and tables present available data and discussion of radionuclide fallout in Alaska. A literature search of 23 on-line databases (Table 1) using Alaska, Strontium (Sr), Cesium (Cs), Plutonium (Pu) and Radionuclide as constraint terms responded with 177 possible citations. After eliminating duplicate citations, 31 articles were available: 17 were relevant to the subject matter; the remainder addressed geologic issues. All of the cited literature addressed 137 Cs, 90 Sr and 239,240 Pu as a result of radionuclide fallout from nuclear testing or accidental release

  6. Using an Environmental Intelligence Framework to Evaluate the Impacts of Ocean Acidification in the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathis, J. T.; Baskin, M.; Cross, J.

    2016-12-01

    The highly productive coastal seas of the Arctic Ocean are located in areas that are projected to experience strong global change, including rapid transitions in temperature and ocean acidification-driven changes in pH and other chemical parameters. Many of the marine organisms that may be most intensely affected by ocean acidification (OA) and other environmental stressors contribute substantially to the commercial fisheries of the Bering Sea and traditional subsistence food supplies across the Arctic. This could represent a looming challenge in many communities as the average prevalence of household food insecurity and very low food security in Alaska are already 12 percent and 4.3 percent, respectively. Here, we evaluate the patterns of dependence on marine resources within Alaska's Arctic that could be negatively impacted by OA and current community characteristics to assess the potential risk to the fishery sector from OA. We used a risk assessment framework to analyze an earth-system global model of ocean chemistry, fisheries harvest data, and demographic information. The analysis showed that regions around Alaska vary in their vulnerability to OA, but that each one will have to deal with possible impacts. Therefore, OA merits consideration in policy planning, as it may represent another challenge to Alaskan communities, some of which are already under acute socio-economic strains. With this in mind, we will present a number of adaptation strategies for communities living throughout Alaska's Arctic that could be applicable to other Arctic regions.

  7. Unmanned Aerial Systems, Moored Balloons, and the U.S. Department of Energy ARM Facilities in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivey, Mark; Verlinde, Johannes

    2014-05-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), through its scientific user facility, the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Climate Research Facility, provides scientific infrastructure and data to the international Arctic research community via its research sites located on the North Slope of Alaska. Facilities and infrastructure to support operations of unmanned aerial systems for science missions in the Arctic and North Slope of Alaska were established at Oliktok Point Alaska in 2013. Tethered instrumented balloons will be used in the near future to make measurements of clouds in the boundary layer including mixed-phase clouds. The DOE ARM Program has operated an atmospheric measurement facility in Barrow, Alaska, since 1998. Major upgrades to this facility, including scanning radars, were added in 2010. Arctic Observing Networks are essential to meet growing policy, social, commercial, and scientific needs. Calibrated, high-quality arctic geophysical datasets that span ten years or longer are especially important for climate studies, climate model initializations and validations, and for related climate policy activities. For example, atmospheric data and derived atmospheric forcing estimates are critical for sea-ice simulations. International requirements for well-coordinated, long-term, and sustained Arctic Observing Networks and easily-accessible data sets collected by those networks have been recognized by many high-level workshops and reports (Arctic Council Meetings and workshops, National Research Council reports, NSF workshops and others). The recent Sustaining Arctic Observation Network (SAON) initiative sponsored a series of workshops to "develop a set of recommendations on how to achieve long-term Arctic-wide observing activities that provide free, open, and timely access to high-quality data that will realize pan-Arctic and global value-added services and provide societal benefits." This poster will present information on opportunities for members of the

  8. Pan-Arctic modelling of net ecosystem exchange of CO2

    OpenAIRE

    Shaver, G. R.; Rastetter, E. B.; Salmon, V.; Street, L. E.; van de Weg, M. J.; Rocha, A.; van Wijk, M. T.; Williams, M.

    2013-01-01

    Net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of C varies greatly among Arctic ecosystems. Here, we show that approximately 75 per cent of this variation can be accounted for in a single regression model that predicts NEE as a function of leaf area index (LAI), air temperature and photosynthetically active radiation (PAR). The model was developed in concert with a survey of the light response of NEE in Arctic and subarctic tundras in Alaska, Greenland, Svalbard and Sweden. Model parametrizations based on data...

  9. The Arctic Lower Troposphere Observed Structure (ALTOS) Campaign

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Verlinde, J

    2010-10-18

    The ALTOS campaign focuses on operating a tethered observing system for routine in situ sampling of low-level (< 2 km) Arctic clouds. It has been a long-term hope to fly tethered systems at Barrow, Alaska, but it is clear that the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will not permit in-cloud tether systems at Barrow, even if unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) operations are allowed in the future. We have provided the scientific rationale for long-term, routine in situ measurements of cloud and aerosol properties in the Arctic. The existing restricted air space at Oliktok offers an opportunity to do so.

  10. Arctic Energy Technology Development Laboratory

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sukumar Bandopadhyay; Charles Chamberlin; Robert Chaney; Gang Chen; Godwin Chukwu; James Clough; Steve Colt; Anthony Covescek; Robert Crosby; Abhijit Dandekar; Paul Decker; Brandon Galloway; Rajive Ganguli; Catherine Hanks; Rich Haut; Kristie Hilton; Larry Hinzman; Gwen Holdman; Kristie Holland; Robert Hunter; Ron Johnson; Thomas Johnson; Doug Kame; Mikhail Kaneveskly; Tristan Kenny; Santanu Khataniar; Abhijeet Kulkami; Peter Lehman; Mary Beth Leigh; Jenn-Tai Liang; Michael Lilly; Chuen-Sen Lin; Paul Martin; Pete McGrail; Dan Miller; Debasmita Misra; Nagendra Nagabhushana; David Ogbe; Amanda Osborne; Antoinette Owen; Sharish Patil; Rocky Reifenstuhl; Doug Reynolds; Eric Robertson; Todd Schaef; Jack Schmid; Yuri Shur; Arion Tussing; Jack Walker; Katey Walter; Shannon Watson; Daniel White; Gregory White; Mark White; Richard Wies; Tom Williams; Dennis Witmer; Craig Wollard; Tao Zhu

    2008-12-31

    The Arctic Energy Technology Development Laboratory was created by the University of Alaska Fairbanks in response to a congressionally mandated funding opportunity through the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), specifically to encourage research partnerships between the university, the Alaskan energy industry, and the DOE. The enabling legislation permitted research in a broad variety of topics particularly of interest to Alaska, including providing more efficient and economical electrical power generation in rural villages, as well as research in coal, oil, and gas. The contract was managed as a cooperative research agreement, with active project monitoring and management from the DOE. In the eight years of this partnership, approximately 30 projects were funded and completed. These projects, which were selected using an industry panel of Alaskan energy industry engineers and managers, cover a wide range of topics, such as diesel engine efficiency, fuel cells, coal combustion, methane gas hydrates, heavy oil recovery, and water issues associated with ice road construction in the oil fields of the North Slope. Each project was managed as a separate DOE contract, and the final technical report for each completed project is included with this final report. The intent of this process was to address the energy research needs of Alaska and to develop research capability at the university. As such, the intent from the beginning of this process was to encourage development of partnerships and skills that would permit a transition to direct competitive funding opportunities managed from funding sources. This project has succeeded at both the individual project level and at the institutional development level, as many of the researchers at the university are currently submitting proposals to funding agencies, with some success.

  11. Arctic hurricanes

    Science.gov (United States)

    The devastating winter storms that swoop across the Arctic, endangering offshore oil rigs, shipping, and fishing operations in their paths, are the subject of current study by a team of weather researchers from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). As part of the study, U.S. scientists and those from several other countries also will attempt to estimate how much carbon dioxide is transferred from the atmosphere into the North Atlantic's deep waters during winter storms.A typical polar low, like a hurricane, has a spiral cloud pattern and winds exceeding 120 km per hour, said Melvyn Shapiro, senior meteorologist on the polar-low study. The storms are smaller than most hurricanes, however, and rarely have a diameter greater than 320 km. Some, but not all, develop an “eye,” like a hurricane. Polar lows, only recently documented from polar orbiting satellite imagery, appear to form primarily from October to April, but peak in February.

  12. Organochlorine contaminant and stable isotope profiles in Arctic fox (Alopex lagopus) from the Alaskan and Canadian Arctic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hoekstra, P.F.; Braune, B.M.; O'Hara, T.M.; Elkin, B.; Solomon, K.R.; Muir, D.C.G.

    2003-01-01

    PCBs in Arctic fox are lower than reported in other Arctic populations and unlikely to cause significant impairment of reproductive success. - Arctic fox (Alopex lagopus) is a circumpolar species distributed across northern Canada and Alaska. Arctic fox muscle and liver were collected at Barrow, AK, USA (n=18), Holman, NT, Canada (n=20), and Arviat, NU, Canada (n=20) to elucidate the feeding ecology of this species and relate these findings to body residue patterns of organochlorine contaminants (OCs). Stable carbon (δ 13 C) and nitrogen (δ 15 N) isotope analyses of Arctic fox muscle indicated that trophic position (estimated by δ 15 N) is positively correlated with increasing δ 13 C values, suggesting that Arctic fox with a predominately marine-based foraging strategy occupy a higher trophic level than individuals mostly feeding from a terrestrial-based carbon source. At all sites, the rank order for OC groups in muscle was polychlorinated biphenyls (ΣPCB) > chlordane-related compounds (ΣCHLOR) > hexachlorocyclohexane (ΣHCH) > total toxaphene (TOX) ≥chlorobenzenes (ΣClBz) > DDT-related isomers (ΣDDT). In liver, ΣCHLOR was the most abundant OC group, followed by ΣPCB > TOX > ΣHCH > ΣClBz > ΣDDT. The most abundant OC analytes detected from Arctic fox muscle and liver were oxychlordane, PCB-153, and PCB-180. The comparison of δ 15 N with OC concentrations indicated that relative trophic position might not accurately predict OC bioaccumulation in Arctic fox. The bioaccumulation pattern of OCs in the Arctic fox is similar to the polar bear. While ΣPCB concentrations were highly variable, concentrations in the Arctic fox were generally below those associated with the toxicological endpoints for adverse effects on mammalian reproduction. Further research is required to properly elucidate the potential health impacts to this species from exposure to OCs

  13. Mercury genomics in the Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowman, K.; Lamborg, C. H.; Collins, E.; Hammerschmidt, C. R.; Agather, A. M.

    2017-12-01

    Methyl-mercury production in the ocean is likely dependent on microbial activity, however, methylation pathways remain elusive. In the Arctic, high concentrations of methyl-mercury are found in top predator marine mammals and seabirds. As a result of seafood consumption, pregnant women and women of child-bearing age in the Arctic often have blood Hg concentrations that exceed U.S. and Canadian safety guidelines. To understand the chemical cycling of mercury in the Arctic Ocean we participated in the 2015 U.S. GEOTRACES Arctic expedition (GN01) to measure Hg speciation in the water column of the Bering Sea, Makarov basin, and Canada basin between Dutch Harbor, Alaska and the North Pole. At select stations, seawater was filtered through 0.22 µm Sterivex filters and genomic DNA was collected using a phenol-chloroform extraction. Broad-range degenerate PCR primers were used to detect the presence of hgcAB, and clade-specific degenerate quantitative PCR primers were used to determine the abundance of hgcA. Metagenomic sequencing was done at three stations to identify taxonomic and functional groups, and to search for hgcA-like genes that the PCR primers may have missed.

  14. AMBON - the Arctic Marine Biodiversity Observing Network

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iken, K.; Danielson, S. L.; Grebmeier, J. M.; Cooper, L. W.; Hopcroft, R. R.; Kuletz, K.; Stafford, K.; Mueter, F. J.; Collins, E.; Bluhm, B.; Moore, S. E.; Bochenek, R. J.

    2016-02-01

    The goal of the Arctic Marine Biodiversity Observing Network (AMBON) is to build an operational and sustainable marine biodiversity observing network for the US Arctic Chukchi Sea continental shelf. The AMBON has four main goals: 1. To close current gaps in taxonomic biodiversity observations from microbes to whales, 2. To integrate results of past and ongoing research programs on the US Arctic shelf into a biodiversity observation network, 3. To demonstrate at a regional level how an observing network could be developed, and 4. To link with programs on the pan-Arctic to global scale. The AMBON fills taxonomic (from microbes to mammals), functional (food web structure), spatial and temporal (continuing time series) gaps, and includes new technologies such as state-of-the-art genomic tools, with biodiversity and environmental observations linked through central data management through the Alaska Ocean Observing System. AMBON is a 5-year partnership between university and federal researchers, funded through the National Ocean Partnership Program (NOPP), with partners in the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the Bureau of Ocean and Energy Management (BOEM), and Shell industry. AMBON will allow us to better coordinate, sustain, and synthesize biodiversity research efforts, and make data available to a broad audience of users, stakeholders, and resource managers.

  15. Changing Arctic: A Strategic Analysis of United States Arctic Policy and the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-05-01

    exclusive rights to bodies of water and enforce their national laws in a number of areas: fishing, mineral harvesting, pollution, and immigration to...federal and state officials to gain access to proposed sites in American waters north of the Arctic Circle. No stranger to Alaska, Shell Oil was one of

  16. The Arctic Grand Challenge: Abrupt Climate Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkniss, P. E.

    2003-12-01

    Trouble in polar paradise (Science, 08/30/02), significant changes in the Arctic environment are scientifically documented (R.E. Moritz et al. ibid.). More trouble, lots more, "abrupt climate change," (R. B. Alley, et al. Science 03/28/03). R. Corell, Arctic Climate Impact Assessment team (ACIA), "If you want to see what will happen in the rest of the world 25 years from now just look what's happening in the Arctic," (Arctic Council meeting, Iceland, 08/03). What to do? Make abrupt Arctic climate change a grand challenge for the IPY-4 and beyond! Scientifically:Describe the "state" of the Arctic climate system as succinctly as possible and accept it as the point of departure.Develop a hypothesis and criteria what constitutes "abrupt climate change," in the Arctic that can be tested with observations. Observations: Bring to bear existing observations and coordinate new investments in observations through an IPY-4 scientific management committee. Make the new Barrow, Alaska, Global Climate Change Research Facility a major U.S. contribution and focal point for the IPY-4 in the U.S Arctic. Arctic populations, Native peoples: The people of the North are living already, daily, with wrenching change, encroaching on their habitats and cultures. For them "the earth is faster now," (I. Krupnik and D. Jolly, ARCUS, 2002). From a political, economic, social and entirely realistic perspective, an Arctic grand challenge without the total integration of the Native peoples in this effort cannot succeed. Therefore: Communications must be established, and the respective Native entities must be approached with the determination to create well founded, well functioning, enduring partnerships. In the U.S. Arctic, Barrow with its long history of involvement and active support of science and with the new global climate change research facility should be the focal point of choice Private industry: Resource extraction in the Arctic followed by oil and gas consumption, return the combustion

  17. Western Arctic Temperature Sensitivity Varies under Different Mean States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Daniels, W.; Russell, J. M.; Morrill, C.; Longo, W. M.; Giblin, A. E.; Holland-Stergar, P.; Hu, A.; Huang, Y.

    2017-12-01

    The Arctic is warming faster than anywhere on earth. Predictions of future change, however, are hindered by uncertainty in the mechanisms that underpin Arctic amplification. Data from Beringia (Alaska and Eastern Siberia) are particularly inconclusive with regards to both glacial-interglacial climate change as well as the presence or absence of abrupt climate change events such as the Younger Dryas. Here we investigate temperature change in Beringia from the last glacial maximum (LGM) to present using a unique 30 kyr lacustrine record of leaf wax hydrogen isotope ratios (δDwax) from Northern Alaska. We evaluate our results in the context of PMIP3 climate simulations as well as sensitivity tests of the effects of sea level and Bering Strait closure on Arctic Alaskan climate. The amplitude of LGM cooling in Alaska (-3.2 °C relative to pre-industrial) is smaller than other parts of North America and areas proximal to LGM ice sheets, but similar to Arctic Asia and Europe. This suggests that the local feedbacks (vegetation, etc.) had limited impacts on regional temperatures during the last ice-age, and suggests most of the Arctic exhibited similar responses to global climate boundary conditions. Deglacial warming was superimposed by a series of rapid warming events that encompass most of the temperature increase. These events are largely synchronous with abrupt events in the North Atlantic, but are amplified, muted, or even reversed in comparison depending on the mean climate state. For example, we observe warming during Heinrich 1 and during the submergence of the Bering Land Bridge, which are associated with cooling in the North Atlantic. Climate modeling suggests that opening of the Bering Strait controlled the amplitude and sign of millennial-scale temperature changes across the glacial termination.

  18. Technology and Engineering Advances Supporting EarthScope's Alaska Transportable Array

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miner, J.; Enders, M.; Busby, R.

    2015-12-01

    EarthScope's Transportable Array (TA) in Alaska and Canada is an ongoing deployment of 261 high quality broadband seismographs. The Alaska TA is the continuation of the rolling TA/USArray deployment of 400 broadband seismographs in the lower 48 contiguous states and builds on the success of the TA project there. The TA in Alaska and Canada is operated by the IRIS Consortium on behalf of the National Science Foundation as part of the EarthScope program. By Sept 2015, it is anticipated that the TA network in Alaska and Canada will be operating 105 stations. During the summer of 2015, TA field crews comprised of IRIS and HTSI station specialists, as well as representatives from our partner agencies the Alaska Earthquake Center and the Alaska Volcano Observatory and engineers from the UNAVCO Plate Boundary Observatory will have completed a total of 36 new station installations. Additionally, we will have completed upgrades at 9 existing Alaska Earthquake Center stations with borehole seismometers and the adoption of an additional 35 existing stations. Continued development of battery systems using LiFePO4 chemistries, integration of BGAN, Iridium, Cellular and VSAT technologies for real time data transfer, and modifications to electronic systems are a driving force for year two of the Alaska Transportable Array. Station deployment utilizes custom heliportable drills for sensor emplacement in remote regions. The autonomous station design evolution include hardening the sites for Arctic, sub-Arctic and Alpine conditions as well as the integration of rechargeable Lithium Iron Phosphate batteries with traditional AGM batteries We will present new design aspects, outcomes, and lessons learned from past and ongoing deployments, as well as efforts to integrate TA stations with other existing networks in Alaska including the Plate Boundary Observatory and the Alaska Volcano Observatory.

  19. A Compilation and Review of Alaska Energy Projects

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Arlon Tussing; Steve Colt

    2008-12-31

    There have been many energy projects proposed in Alaska over the past several decades, from large scale hydro projects that have never been built to small scale village power projects to use local alternative energy sources, many of which have also not been built. This project was initially intended to review these rejected projects to evaluate the economic feasibility of these ideas in the light of current economics. This review included contacting the agencies responsible for reviewing and funding these projects in Alaska, including the Alaska Energy Authority, the Denali Commission, and the Arctic Energy Technology Development Laboratory, obtaining available information about these projects, and analyzing the economic data. Unfortunately, the most apparent result of this effort was that the data associated with these projects was not collected in a systematic way that allowed this information to be analyzed.

  20. Black brant from Alaska staging and wintering in Japan

    Science.gov (United States)

    Derksen, Dirk V.; Bollinger, K.S.; Ward, David H.; Sedinger, J.S.; Miyabayashi, Y.

    1996-01-01

    Black brant (Branta bernicla nigricans) nest in colonies in arctic Canada, Alaska, and Russia (Derksen and Ward 1993, Sedinger et al. 1993). Virtually the entire population stages in fall at Izembek Lagoon near the tip of the Alaska Peninsula (Bellrose 1976) before southward migration (Dau 1992) to winter habitats in British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, California, and Baja California (Subcommittee on Black Brant 1992). A small number of black brant winter in Japan, Korea, and China (Owen 1980). In Japan 3,000–5,000 brant of unknown origin stop over in fall, and a declining population (in the northern islands (Brazil 1991, Miyabayashi et al. 1994). Here, we report sightings of brant in Japan that were marked in Alaska and propose a migration route based on historical and recent observations and weather patterns.

  1. Tourism and Arctic Observation Systems: exploring the relationships

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suzanne de la Barre

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The Arctic is affected by global environmental change and also by diverse interests from many economic sectors and industries. Over the last decade, various actors have attempted to explore the options for setting up integrated and comprehensive trans-boundary systems for monitoring and observing these impacts. These Arctic Observation Systems (AOS contribute to the planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of environmental change and responsible social and economic development in the Arctic. The aim of this article is to identify the two-way relationship between AOS and tourism. On the one hand, tourism activities account for diverse changes across a broad spectrum of impact fields. On the other hand, due to its multiple and diverse agents and far-reaching activities, tourism is also well-positioned to collect observational data and participate as an actor in monitoring activities. To accomplish our goals, we provide an inventory of tourism-embedded issues and concerns of interest to AOS from a range of destinations in the circumpolar Arctic region, including Alaska, Arctic Canada, Iceland, Svalbard, the mainland European Arctic and Russia. The article also draws comparisons with the situation in Antarctica. On the basis of a collective analysis provided by members of the International Polar Tourism Research Network from across the polar regions, we conclude that the potential role for tourism in the development and implementation of AOS is significant and has been overlooked.

  2. U.S. and the Arctic in the Last Two Decades

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Czarny Roman S.

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The United States became an Arctic country by virtue of purchasing Alaska from Russia in 1867. For a variety of reasons, discussed in this work, the Arctic used to be a focal point for the US during the Cold War, but later on this country paid much less attention to the region, including somewhat dubious awareness of America actually being an Arctic state. The aim of this article is to present some opportunities and challenges posed by governing the Arctic, and in particular a brief outline of the U.S. approach towards the region through its track record in the span of about last two decades, until the year 2015. It also attempts to present the expectations connected with American chairmanship of the Arctic Council, as well as the reasons for the country’s inability to ratify one of the fundamental international instruments, i.e. the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, UNCLOS.

  3. Arctic Clouds Infrared Imaging Field Campaign Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shaw, J. A. [Montana State Univ., Bozeman, MT (United States)

    2016-03-01

    The Infrared Cloud Imager (ICI), a passive thermal imaging system, was deployed at the North Slope of Alaska site in Barrow, Alaska, from July 2012 to July 2014 for measuring spatial-temporal cloud statistics. Thermal imaging of the sky from the ground provides high radiometric contrast during night and polar winter when visible sensors and downward-viewing thermal sensors experience low contrast. In addition to demonstrating successful operation in the Arctic for an extended period and providing data for Arctic cloud studies, a primary objective of this deployment was to validate novel instrument calibration algorithms that will allow more compact ICI instruments to be deployed without the added expense, weight, size, and operational difficulty of a large-aperture onboard blackbody calibration source. This objective was successfully completed with a comparison of the two-year data set calibrated with and without the onboard blackbody. The two different calibration methods produced daily-average cloud amount data sets with correlation coefficient = 0.99, mean difference = 0.0029 (i.e., 0.29% cloudiness), and a difference standard deviation = 0.054. Finally, the ICI instrument generally detected more thin clouds than reported by other ARM cloud products available as of late 2015.

  4. Powassan virus in mammals, Alaska and New Mexico, USA, and Russia, 2004–2007

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deardorff, Eleanor R.; Nofchissey, Robert A.; Cook, Joseph A.; Hope, Andrew G.; Tsvetkova, Albina; Talbot, Sandra L.; Ebel, Gregory D.

    2013-01-01

    Powassan virus is endemic to the United States, Canada, and the Russian Far East. We report serologic evidence of circulation of this virus in Alaska, New Mexico, and Siberia. These data support further studies of viral ecology in rapidly changing Arctic environments.

  5. Arctic climate tipping points.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenton, Timothy M

    2012-02-01

    There is widespread concern that anthropogenic global warming will trigger Arctic climate tipping points. The Arctic has a long history of natural, abrupt climate changes, which together with current observations and model projections, can help us to identify which parts of the Arctic climate system might pass future tipping points. Here the climate tipping points are defined, noting that not all of them involve bifurcations leading to irreversible change. Past abrupt climate changes in the Arctic are briefly reviewed. Then, the current behaviour of a range of Arctic systems is summarised. Looking ahead, a range of potential tipping phenomena are described. This leads to a revised and expanded list of potential Arctic climate tipping elements, whose likelihood is assessed, in terms of how much warming will be required to tip them. Finally, the available responses are considered, especially the prospects for avoiding Arctic climate tipping points.

  6. 78 FR 52941 - Cooperative Research and Development Agreement: Next Generation Arctic Navigational Safety...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-08-27

    ... DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard [Docket No. USCG-2013-0799] Cooperative Research and... to enter into a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with Marine Exchange of Alaska... their voyage risks, as they transit the remote and hostile waters of the U.S. Arctic Exclusive Economic...

  7. SEARCH: Study of Environmental Arctic Change—A System-scale, Cross-disciplinary Arctic Research Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiggins, H. V.; Eicken, H.; Fox, S. E.

    2012-12-01

    SEARCH is an interdisciplinary and interagency program that works with academic and government agency scientists to plan, conduct, and synthesize studies of arctic change. The vision of SEARCH is to provide scientific understanding of arctic environmental change to help society understand and respond to a rapidly changing Arctic. Towards this end, SEARCH: 1. Generates and synthesizes research findings and promotes arctic science and scientific discovery across disciplines and among agencies. 2. Identifies emerging issues in arctic environmental change. 3. Provides information resources to arctic stakeholders, policy-makers, and the public to help them respond to arctic environmental change. 4. Coordinates with national arctic science programs integral to SEARCH goals. 5. Facilitates research activities across local-to-global scales with stakeholder concerns incorporated from the start of the planning process. 6. Represents the U.S. arctic environmental change science community in international and global change research initiatives. Specific current activities include: Arctic Observing Network (AON) - coordinating a system of atmospheric, land- and ocean-based environmental monitoring capabilities that will significantly advance our observations of arctic environmental conditions. Arctic Sea Ice Outlook ¬- an international effort that provides monthly summer reports synthesizing community estimates of the expected sea ice minimum. Sea Ice for Walrus Outlook - a resource for Alaska Native subsistence hunters, coastal communities, and others that provides weekly reports with information on sea ice conditions relevant to walrus in Alaska waters. In April, the SEARCH Science Steering Committee (SSC) released a set of draft 5-year goals and objectives for review by the broader arctic science community. The goals and objectives will direct the SEARCH program in the next five years. The draft SEARCH goals focus on four areas: ice-diminished Arctic Ocean, warming

  8. The genetic prehistory of the New World Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raghavan, Maanasa; DeGiorgio, Michael; Albrechtsen, Anders; Moltke, Ida; Skoglund, Pontus; Korneliussen, Thorfinn S; Grønnow, Bjarne; Appelt, Martin; Gulløv, Hans Christian; Friesen, T Max; Fitzhugh, William; Malmström, Helena; Rasmussen, Simon; Olsen, Jesper; Melchior, Linea; Fuller, Benjamin T; Fahrni, Simon M; Stafford, Thomas; Grimes, Vaughan; Renouf, M A Priscilla; Cybulski, Jerome; Lynnerup, Niels; Lahr, Marta Mirazon; Britton, Kate; Knecht, Rick; Arneborg, Jette; Metspalu, Mait; Cornejo, Omar E; Malaspinas, Anna-Sapfo; Wang, Yong; Rasmussen, Morten; Raghavan, Vibha; Hansen, Thomas V O; Khusnutdinova, Elza; Pierre, Tracey; Dneprovsky, Kirill; Andreasen, Claus; Lange, Hans; Hayes, M Geoffrey; Coltrain, Joan; Spitsyn, Victor A; Götherström, Anders; Orlando, Ludovic; Kivisild, Toomas; Villems, Richard; Crawford, Michael H; Nielsen, Finn C; Dissing, Jørgen; Heinemeier, Jan; Meldgaard, Morten; Bustamante, Carlos; O'Rourke, Dennis H; Jakobsson, Mattias; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Nielsen, Rasmus; Willerslev, Eske

    2014-08-29

    The New World Arctic, the last region of the Americas to be populated by humans, has a relatively well-researched archaeology, but an understanding of its genetic history is lacking. We present genome-wide sequence data from ancient and present-day humans from Greenland, Arctic Canada, Alaska, Aleutian Islands, and Siberia. We show that Paleo-Eskimos (~3000 BCE to 1300 CE) represent a migration pulse into the Americas independent of both Native American and Inuit expansions. Furthermore, the genetic continuity characterizing the Paleo-Eskimo period was interrupted by the arrival of a new population, representing the ancestors of present-day Inuit, with evidence of past gene flow between these lineages. Despite periodic abandonment of major Arctic regions, a single Paleo-Eskimo metapopulation likely survived in near-isolation for more than 4000 years, only to vanish around 700 years ago. Copyright © 2014, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  9. Landscape topography structures the soil microbiome in arctic polygonal tundra

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Taş, Neslihan; Prestat, Emmanuel; Wang, Shi; Wu, Yuxin; Ulrich, Craig; Kneafsey, Timothy; Tringe, Susannah G.; Torn, Margaret S.; Hubbard, Susan S.; Jansson, Janet K.

    2018-02-22

    Global temperature increases are resulting in thaw of permafrost soil in the arctic with increased emission of greenhouse gases (GHGs). Soil microorganisms are responsible for degradation of the trapped organic carbon (C) in permafrost and emission of GHG as it thaws. However, environmental factors governing microbial degradation of soil C and GHG emissions are poorly understood. Here we determined the functional potential of soil microbiomes in arctic tundra across a cryoperturbed polygonal landscape in Barrow, Alaska. Using a combination of metagenome sequencing and gas flux measurements, we found that the soil microbiome composition, diversity and functional potential varied across the polygon transect and that specific microbes and functional genes were correlated to GHG measurements. Several draft genomes of novel species were obtained with genes encoding enzymes involved in cycling of complex organic compounds. These results have larger implications for prediction of the influence of the soil microbiome on soil C flux from arctic regions undergoing environmental change.

  10. High Arctic Nitrous Oxide Emissions Found on Large Spatial Scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkerson, J. P.; Sayres, D. S.; Dobosy, R.; Anderson, J. G.

    2017-12-01

    As the planet warms, greenhouse gas emissions from thawing permafrost can potentially increase the net radiative forcing in our climate structure. However, knowledge about Arctic N2O emissions is particularly sparse. Increasing evidence suggests emissions from permafrost thaw may be a significant natural source of N2O. This evidence, though, is either based on lab experiments or in situ chamber studies, which have extremely limited spatial coverage. Consequently, it has not been confirmed to what extent these high emissions are representative of broader arctic regions. Using an airborne eddy covariance flux technique, we measured N2O fluxes over large regions of Alaska in August 2013. From these measurements, we directly show that large areas of this Arctic region have high N2O emissions.

  11. Engaging new generation of Arctic researchers: 14 years and counting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexeev, V. A.; Walsh, J. E.; Hock, R.; Loucks, D. J.; Kaden, U.

    2016-12-01

    Today, more than ever, an integrated cross-disciplinary approach is necessary to explain changes in the Arctic and understand their implications for the human environment. Advanced training and active involvement of early-career scientists is an important component of this cross-disciplinary approach. This effort led by the International Arctic Research Center at the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) started in 2003. The NSF supported project that started in 2013 conducted four summer schools (one per year) focused on four themes in four different Arctic locations. It provided the participants with an interdisciplinary perspective on Arctic change and its impacts on diverse sectors of the North. It is linked to other ongoing long-term observational and educational programs (e.g. NABOS, Nansen and Amundsen Basins Observational System; LTER, Long Term Environmental Research) and targets young scientists by using the interdisciplinary and place-based setting to broaden their perspective on Arctic change and to enhance their communication skills. Each course for 15-25 people consisted of classroom and hands-on components and work with a multidisciplinary group of mentors on projects devoted to themes exemplified by the location. A specialist from the School of Education at UAF evaluated student's progress during the summer schools. Additionally, an anthropologist attended the 2016 summer school to study how students learn to build and assess models, as well as examine students' and instructors' attitudes toward science communication, which provided additional feedback about learning and teaching in these settings. Lessons learned during the 14 years of conducting summer schools, methods of attracting in-kind support and approaches to teaching students are prominently featured in this study. Activities during the two most recent schools, one conducted at the Toolik Lake Field Station on the Alaskan North Slope and another at the International Arctic Research Center

  12. Bryophytes from Tuxedni Wilderness area, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schofield, W.B.; Talbot, S. S.; Talbot, S.L.

    2002-01-01

    The bryoflora of two small maritime islands, Chisik and Duck Island (2,302 ha), comprising Tuxedni Wilderness in western lower Cook Inlet, Alaska, was examined to determine species composition in an area where no previous collections had been reported. The field study was conducted from sites selected to represent the totality of environmental variation within Tuxedni Wilderness. Data were analyzed using published reports to compare the bryophyte distribution patterns at three levels, the Northern Hemisphere, North America, and Alaska. A total of 286 bryophytes were identified: 230 mosses and 56 liverworts. Bryum miniatum, Dichodontium olympicum, and Orthotrichum pollens are new to Alaska. The annotated list of species for Tuxedni Wilderness expands the known range for many species and fills distribution gaps within Hulte??n's Central Pacific Coast district. Compared with bryophyte distribution in the Northern Hemisphere, the bryoflora of Tuxedni Wilderness primarily includes taxa of boreal (61%), montane (13%), temperate (11%), arctic-alpine (7%), cosmopolitan (7%), distribution; 4% of the total moss flora are North America endemics. A brief summary of the botanical exploration of the general area is provided, as is a description of the bryophytes present in the vegetation and habitat types of Chisik and Duck Islands.

  13. Approaching a Postcolonial Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Lars

    2016-01-01

    This article explores different postcolonially configured approaches to the Arctic. It begins by considering the Arctic as a region, an entity, and how the customary political science informed approaches are delimited by their focus on understanding the Arctic as a region at the service of the co......This article explores different postcolonially configured approaches to the Arctic. It begins by considering the Arctic as a region, an entity, and how the customary political science informed approaches are delimited by their focus on understanding the Arctic as a region at the service...... of the contemporary neoliberal order. It moves on to explore how different parts of the Arctic are inscribed in a number of sub-Arctic nation-state binds, focusing mainly on Canada and Denmark. The article argues that the postcolonial can be understood as a prism or a methodology that asks pivotal questions to all...... approaches to the Arctic. Yet the postcolonial itself is characterised by limitations, not least in this context its lack of interest in the Arctic, and its bias towards conventional forms of representation in art. The article points to the need to develop a more integrated critique of colonial and neo...

  14. ARM-ACME V: ARM Airborne Carbon Measurements V on the North Slope of Alaska Science and Implementation Plan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Biraud, S [Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

    2015-05-01

    Atmospheric temperatures are warming faster in the Arctic than predicted by climate models. The impact of this warming on permafrost degradation is not well understood, but it is projected to increase carbon decomposition and greenhouse gas production (CO₂ and/or CH₄) by arctic ecosystems. Airborne observations of atmospheric trace gases, aerosols, and cloud properties at the North Slope of Alaska are improving our understanding of global climate, with the goal of reducing the uncertainty in global and regional climate simulations and projections.

  15. Pan-Arctic observations in GRENE Arctic Climate Change Research Project and its successor

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamanouchi, Takashi

    2016-04-01

    We started a Japanese initiative - "Arctic Climate Change Research Project" - within the framework of the Green Network of Excellence (GRENE) Program, funded by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Japan (MEXT), in 2011. This Project targeted understanding and forecasting "Rapid Change of the Arctic Climate System and its Global Influences." Four strategic research targets are set by the Ministry: 1. Understanding the mechanism of warming amplification in the Arctic; 2. Understanding the Arctic climate system for global climate and future change; 3. Evaluation of the impacts of Arctic change on the weather and climate in Japan, marine ecosystems and fisheries; 4. Projection of sea ice distribution and Arctic sea routes. Through a network of universities and institutions in Japan, this 5-year Project involves more than 300 scientists from 39 institutions and universities. The National Institute of Polar Research (NIPR) works as the core institute and The Japan Agency for Marine- Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC) joins as the supporting institute. There are 7 bottom up research themes approved: the atmosphere, terrestrial ecosystems, cryosphere, greenhouse gases, marine ecology and fisheries, sea ice and Arctic sea routes and climate modeling, among 22 applications. The Project will realize multi-disciplinal study of the Arctic region and connect to the projection of future Arctic and global climatic change by modeling. The project has been running since the beginning of 2011 and in those 5 years pan-Arctic observations have been carried out in many locations, such as Svalbard, Russian Siberia, Alaska, Canada, Greenland and the Arctic Ocean. In particular, 95 GHz cloud profiling radar in high precision was established at Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard, and intensive atmospheric observations were carried out in 2014 and 2015. In addition, the Arctic Ocean cruises by R/V "Mirai" (belonging to JAMSTEC) and other icebreakers belonging to other

  16. Ecology of North American Arctic continental shelf benthos: a review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carey, Andrew G.

    1991-08-01

    The zoogeography, ecology, and biology of continental shelf invertebrate benthos along the arctic coast of North America from Alaska to western Greenland are reviewed. Environmental influences are noted and the life histories as well as the food sources of the fauna are summarized. The existence of regionally associated, characteristic community structures, centred upon the northern Bering Sea and the eastern Chukchi Sea, the Beaufort Sea, the Canadian Archipelago, the eastern Canadian Arctic, and western Greenland, is indicated. Early field research was exploratory and fragmented. Since 1940 more extensive studies oriented toward surveys and environmental baselines have been conducted. Over the last few decades physiological ecology studies of selected species have been undertaken to better understand adaptations to polar conditions. Recent Canadian research has included long-term field experiments on the effects of oil spillage in arctic waters as well as quantitative studies of benthos across the Archipelago and within fiords and other specialized environments. This research has suggested the need for basic biological and ecological research from the level of species through complete ecosystems in arctic waters. Additional studies on the long-term effects of pollution should be undertaken in the colder regions where it is likely that biological processes are slower and the effects of pollution are more long-lasting. Specifically, the ability to define pelagic-benthic coupling in Canadian arctic waters would provide insight into the role of the benthos in low productivity arctic ecosystems. In summary co-operative international research programmes on continental shelf benthos throughout the Arctic Basin and its surrounding seas should be undertaken. Knowledge of the range of shelf environments will provide insight into the controlling physical and biological features of the environment as well as the role of the seafloor within the arctic environment.

  17. Red-throated loons (Gavia stellata) breeding in Alaska, USA, are exposed to PCBs while on their Asian wintering grounds

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schmutz, Joel A., E-mail: jschmutz@usgs.go [U.S. Geological Survey, 4210 University Drive, Anchorage, AK 99508 (United States); Trust, Kimberly A., E-mail: kim_trust@fws.go [U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 1011 East Tudor Road, Anchorage, AK 99503 (United States); Matz, Angela C., E-mail: angela_matz@fws.go [U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 101 12th Avenue, Room 110, Fairbanks, AK 99701 (United States)

    2009-08-15

    Red-throated loons (Gavia stellata) breeding in Alaska declined 53% during 1977-1993. We compare concentrations of environmental contaminants in red-throated loons among four nesting areas in Alaska and discuss potential ramifications of exposure on reproductive success and population trends. Eggs from the four areas had similar total polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) concentrations, but eggs from the Arctic coastal plain had different congener profiles and greater toxic equivalents (TEQs) than eggs from elsewhere. Satellite telemetry data indicate that red-throated loons from the Arctic coastal plain in northern Alaska winter in southeast Asia, while those breeding elsewhere in Alaska winter in North America. Different wintering areas may lead to differential PCB accumulation among red-throated loon populations. For eggs from the Arctic coastal plain, TEQs were great enough to postulate PCB-associated reproductive effects in piscivores. The correlation between migration patterns and PCB profiles suggests that red-throated loons breeding in northern Alaska are exposed to PCBs while on their Asian wintering grounds. - Winter exposure to PCBs in Asia results in high TEQs in eggs of loons breeding in northern Alaska, USA.

  18. Climate Variations and Alaska Tundra Vegetation Productivity Declines in Spring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhatt, U. S.; Walker, D. A.; Bieniek, P.; Raynolds, M. K.; Epstein, H. E.; Comiso, J. C.; Pinzon, J. E.; Tucker, C. J.

    2015-12-01

    While sea ice has continued to decline, vegetation productivity increases have declined particularly during spring in Alaska as well as many parts of the Arctic tundra. To understand the processes behind these features we investigate spring climate variations that includes temperature, circulation patterns, and snow cover to determine how these may be contributing to spring browning. This study employs remotely sensed weekly 25-km sea ice concentration, weekly surface temperature, and bi-weekly NDVI from 1982 to 2014. Maximum NDVI (MaxNDVI, Maximum Normalized Difference Vegetation Index), Time Integrated NDVI (TI-NDVI), Summer Warmth Index (SWI, sum of degree months above freezing during May-August), atmospheric reanalysis data, dynamically downscaled climate data, meteorological station data, and snow water equivalent (GlobSnow, assimilated snow data set). We analyzed the data for the full period (1982-2014) and for two sub-periods (1982-1998 and 1999-2014), which were chosen based on the declining Alaska SWI since 1998. MaxNDVI has increased from 1982-2014 over most of the Arctic but has declined from 1999 to 2014 southwest Alaska. TI-NDVI has trends that are similar to those for MaxNDVI for the full period but display widespread declines over the 1999-2014 period. Therefore, as the MaxNDVI has continued to increase overall for the Arctic, TI-NDVI has been declining since 1999 and these declines are particularly noteworthy during spring in Alaska. Spring declines in Alaska have been linked to increased spring snow cover that can delay greenup (Bieniek et al. 2015) but recent ground observations suggest that after an initial warming and greening, late season freezing temperature are damaging the plants. The late season freezing temperature hypothesis will be explored with meteorological climate/weather data sets for Alaska tundra regions. References P.A. Bieniek, US Bhatt, DA Walker, MK Raynolds, JC Comiso, HE Epstein, JE Pinzon, CJ Tucker, RL Thoman, H Tran, N M

  19. On the Precipitation and Precipitation Change in Alaska

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gerd Wendler

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Alaska observes very large differences in precipitation throughout the state; southeast Alaska experiences consistently wet conditions, while northern Arctic Alaska observes very dry conditions. The maximum mean annual precipitation of 5727 mm is observed in the southeastern panhandle at Little Port Arthur, while the minimum of 92 mm occurs on the North Slope at Kuparuk. Besides explaining these large differences due to geographic and orographic location, we discuss the changes in precipitation with time. Analyzing the 18 first-order National Weather Service stations, we found that the total average precipitation in the state increased by 17% over the last 67 years. The observed changes in precipitation are furthermore discussed as a function of the observed temperature increase of 2.1 °C, the mean temperature change of the 18 stations over the same period. This observed warming of Alaska is about three times the magnitude of the mean global warming and allows the air to hold more water vapor. Furthermore, we discuss the effect of the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO, which has a strong influence on both the temperature and precipitation in Alaska.

  20. Arctic wind energy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Peltola, E.; Holttinen, H.; Marjaniemi, M.; Tammelin, B.

    1998-01-01

    Arctic wind energy research was aimed at adapting existing wind technologies to suit the arctic climatic conditions in Lapland. Project research work included meteorological measurements, instrument development, development of a blade heating system for wind turbines, load measurements and modelling of ice induced loads on wind turbines, together with the development of operation and maintenance practices in arctic conditions. As a result the basis now exists for technically feasible and economically viable wind energy production in Lapland. New and marketable products, such as blade heating systems for wind turbines and meteorological sensors for arctic conditions, with substantial export potential, have also been developed. (orig.)

  1. Arctic wind energy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peltola, E. [Kemijoki Oy (Finland); Holttinen, H.; Marjaniemi, M. [VTT Energy, Espoo (Finland); Tammelin, B. [Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki (Finland)

    1998-12-31

    Arctic wind energy research was aimed at adapting existing wind technologies to suit the arctic climatic conditions in Lapland. Project research work included meteorological measurements, instrument development, development of a blade heating system for wind turbines, load measurements and modelling of ice induced loads on wind turbines, together with the development of operation and maintenance practices in arctic conditions. As a result the basis now exists for technically feasible and economically viable wind energy production in Lapland. New and marketable products, such as blade heating systems for wind turbines and meteorological sensors for arctic conditions, with substantial export potential, have also been developed. (orig.)

  2. Arctic Storms and Their Influence on Surface Climate in the Chukchi-Beaufort Seas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Y.; Zhang, X.; Rinke, A.; Zhang, J.

    2017-12-01

    Increases in the frequency and intensity of Arctic storms and resulting weather hazards may endanger the offshore environment, coastal community, and energy infrastructure in the Arctic as sea ice retreats. Advancing ability to identify fine-scale variations in surface climate produced by progressively stronger storm would be extremely helpful to resources management and sustainable development for coastal community. In this study, we analyzed the storms and their impacts on surface climate over the Beaufort-Chukchi seas by employing the date sets from both the hindcast simulations of the coupled Arctic regional climate model HIRHAM-NAOSIM and the recently developed Chukchi-Beaufort High-resolution Atmospheric Reanalysis (CBHAR). Based on the characteristics of spatial pattern and temporal variability of the Arctic storm activity, we categorized storms to three groups with their different origins: the East Siberia Sea, Alaska and the central Arctic Ocean. The storms originating from the central Arctic Ocean have the strongest intensity in winter with relatively less storm number. Storms traveling from Alaska to the Beaufort Sea most frequently occurred in autumn with weaker intensity. A large portion of storms originated from the East Siberia Sea region in summer. Further statistical analysis suggests that increase in surface air temperature and wind speed could be attributed to the increased frequency of storm occurrence in autumn (September to November) along the continental shelf in the Beaufort Sea.

  3. CONCEPTUAL DIFFERENCES BETWEEN THE PACIFIC, ATLANTIC AND ARCTIC TSUNAMI WARNING SYSTEMS FOR CANADA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T.S. Murty

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Canada has coastlines on three of the four oceans on the globe, namely, the Pacific, Atlantic and Arctic oceans. The Pacific and Atlantic oceans are connected to the Arctic Ocean in the north, but still they are three distinct oceans, and need three individual tsunami warning systems. Tsunamis in the Arctic Ocean are not as well documented as in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. From what is known, tsunamis in the Arctic Ocean are rare and probably are small in amplitude. Because of very low population density, around the Canadian Arctic, at present, there is no priority for a tsunami warning system for Arctic Canada. For the Pacific Ocean, a tsunami warning system is in existence since 1948. In at least one sense, the warning aspects of the tsunami warning system for the Pacific coast of Canada, is relatively simple and straight forward, because it involves only the federal government (PSEPC and the provincial government of British Columbia (PEP. For the Atlantic Ocean, A tsunami warning system is now being established. The warning aspects will be some what more complex for eastern Canada, since it not only involves the federal government, but also five provinces, namely, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Quebec. The Alaska tsunami warning center (ATWC in Palmer, Alaska, provides tsunami warnings for both Pacific and Atlantic Canada.

  4. Renewable Energy in Alaska

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    2013-03-01

    This report examines the opportunities, challenges, and costs associated with renewable energy implementation in Alaska and provides strategies that position Alaska's accumulating knowledge in renewable energy development for export to the rapidly growing energy/electric markets of the developing world.

  5. Tourism in rural Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katrina Church-Chmielowski

    2007-01-01

    Tourism in rural Alaska is an education curriculum with worldwide relevance. Students have started small businesses, obtained employment in the tourism industry and gotten in touch with their people. The Developing Alaska Rural Tourism collaborative project has resulted in student scholarships, workshops on website development, marketing, small...

  6. Alaska geothermal bibliography

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liss, S.A.; Motyka, R.J.; Nye, C.J. (comps.)

    1987-05-01

    The Alaska geothermal bibliography lists all publications, through 1986, that discuss any facet of geothermal energy in Alaska. In addition, selected publications about geology, geophysics, hydrology, volcanology, etc., which discuss areas where geothermal resources are located are included, though the geothermal resource itself may not be mentioned. The bibliography contains 748 entries.

  7. Partial pressure (or fugacity) of carbon dioxide, salinity and other variables collected from Surface underway observations using Carbon dioxide (CO2) gas analyzer, Shower head chamber equilibrator for autonomous carbon dioxide (CO2) measurement and other instruments from HEALY in the Arctic Ocean, Beaufort Sea and others from 2014-05-05 to 2014-08-30 (NCEI Accession 0144350)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — NCEI Accession 0144350 includes Surface underway data collected from HEALY in the Arctic Ocean, Beaufort Sea, Bering Sea, Coastal Waters of SE Alaska, Gulf of...

  8. Partial pressure (or fugacity) of carbon dioxide, salinity and other variables collected from Surface underway observations using Carbon dioxide (CO2) gas analyzer, Shower head chamber equilibrator for autonomous carbon dioxide (CO2) measurement and other instruments from HEALY in the Arctic Ocean, Beaufort Sea and others from 2012-08-01 to 2012-10-24 (NCEI Accession 0144338)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — NCEI Accession 0144338 includes Surface underway data collected from HEALY in the Arctic Ocean, Beaufort Sea, Bering Sea, Coastal Waters of SE Alaska and North...

  9. Partial pressure (or fugacity) of carbon dioxide, salinity and other variables collected from Surface underway observations using Carbon dioxide (CO2) gas analyzer, Shower head chamber equilibrator for autonomous carbon dioxide (CO2) measurement and other instruments from HEALY in the Arctic Ocean, Beaufort Sea and others from 2011-05-27 to 2011-12-16 (NCEI Accession 0144345)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — NCEI Accession 0144345 includes Surface underway data collected from HEALY in the Arctic Ocean, Beaufort Sea, Bering Sea, Coastal Waters of SE Alaska, Gulf of...

  10. Partial pressure (or fugacity) of carbon dioxide, salinity and other variables collected from Surface underway observations using Carbon dioxide (CO2) gas analyzer, Shower head chamber equilibrator for autonomous carbon dioxide (CO2) measurement and other instruments from Marcus G. Langseth in the Arctic Ocean, Beaufort Sea and others from 2011-04-13 to 2011-12-28 (NCEI Accession 0144305)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — NCEI Accession 0144305 includes Surface underway data collected from Marcus G. Langseth in the Arctic Ocean, Beaufort Sea, Bering Sea, Gulf of Alaska, Hawaiian...

  11. White Arctic vs. Blue Arctic: Making Choices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfirman, S. L.; Newton, R.; Schlosser, P.; Pomerance, R.; Tremblay, B.; Murray, M. S.; Gerrard, M.

    2015-12-01

    As the Arctic warms and shifts from icy white to watery blue and resource-rich, tension is arising between the desire to restore and sustain an ice-covered Arctic and stakeholder communities that hope to benefit from an open Arctic Ocean. If emissions of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere continue on their present trend, most of the summer sea ice cover is projected to be gone by mid-century, i.e., by the time that few if any interventions could be in place to restore it. There are many local as well as global reasons for ice restoration, including for example, preserving the Arctic's reflectivity, sustaining critical habitat, and maintaining cultural traditions. However, due to challenges in implementing interventions, it may take decades before summer sea ice would begin to return. This means that future generations would be faced with bringing sea ice back into regions where they have not experienced it before. While there is likely to be interest in taking action to restore ice for the local, regional, and global services it provides, there is also interest in the economic advancement that open access brings. Dealing with these emerging issues and new combinations of stakeholders needs new approaches - yet environmental change in the Arctic is proceeding quickly and will force the issues sooner rather than later. In this contribution we examine challenges, opportunities, and responsibilities related to exploring options for restoring Arctic sea ice and potential pathways for their implementation. Negotiating responses involves international strategic considerations including security and governance, meaning that along with local communities, state decision-makers, and commercial interests, national governments will have to play central roles. While these issues are currently playing out in the Arctic, similar tensions are also emerging in other regions.

  12. Time-slice maps showing age, distribution, and style of deformation in Alaska north of 60° N.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Thomas E.; Box, Stephen E.

    2016-08-29

    The structural architecture of Alaska is the product of a complex history of tectonism that occurred along the Cordilleran and Arctic margins of North America through interactions with ancient and modern ocean plates and with continental elements derived from Laurentia, Siberia, and Baltica. To unravel the tectonic history of Alaska, we constructed maps showing the age, distribution, structural style, and kinematics of contractional and penetrative extensional deformation in Alaska north of latitude 60° N. at a scale of 1:5,000,000. These maps use the Geologic Map of the Arctic (Harrison and others, 2011) as a base map and follow the guidelines in the Tectonic Map of the Arctic project (Petrov and others, 2013) for construction, including use of the International Commission on Stratigraphy time scale (Cohen and others, 2013) divided into 20 time intervals. We find evidence for deformation in 14 of the 20 time intervals and present maps showing the known or probable extent of deformation for each time interval. Maps and descriptions of deformational style, age constraints, kinematics, and information sources for each deformational episode are discussed in the text and are reported in tabular form. This report also contains maps showing the lithologies and structural geology of Alaska, a terrane map, and the distribution of tectonically important units including post-tectonic sedimentary basins, accretionary complexes, ophiolites, metamorphic rocks.These new maps show that most deformational belts in Alaska are relatively young features, having developed during the late Mesozoic and Cenozoic. The oldest episode of deformation recognized anywhere in Alaska is found in the basement of the Farewell terrane (~1.75 Ga). Paleozoic and early Mesozoic deformational events, including Devonian deformation in the Arctic Alaska terrane, Pennsylvanian deformation in the Alexander terrane, Permian deformation in the Yukon Composite (Klondike orogeny) and Farewell terranes (Browns

  13. Natural Disaster Risk and Engagement in the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eichelberger, J. C.

    2015-12-01

    The Arctic is beset with natural hazards no less than other regions of Earth, but there are some special aspects that require attention. The presence of ice leads to spring river flooding and dynamics of coastal erosion not present in warmer climates. Vast boreal forests are subject to wildfires that are huge pollution events and a positive feedback to climate change through production of CO2, other gases, and black carbon. Darkness and extreme cold that prevail for a significant portion of the year is a challenge to disaster response. Special societal aspects of the Arctic produce vulnerabilities on two scales. One is the development of infrastructure in support of growing extractive industries and Arctic shipping. Reliance on such facilities, which often lack redundancy, and on long supply lines for food and fuel from the south impedes resilience. In 1964, Alaska lost much of its infrastructure to the 9.2 magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunamis. Today, Alaska has greater dependency on external supplies and less internal redundancy. Planning that affects vulnerability of infrastructure is often done by corporations and regulated by government agencies based outside the Arctic. The work of scientists who understood Alaska, both within and outside government, provided information to energy corporations persuading them to include expensive design measures into the Trans Alaska Pipeline for crossing an active fault and preventing thawing of permafrost. This is a success story that should not be forgotten. At the other end of the size scale are isolated off-grid and off-road remote communities with fragile power, water, and sanitation facilities. A disaster there can pose an immediate threat to health and even life. Long-term evacuation and the cost a reconstruction may mean that the community is never re-established. Where such communities are centers of indigneous culture, the culture is threatened. With the goal of identifying best practices with these

  14. Arctic circulation regimes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Proshutinsky, Andrey; Dukhovskoy, Dmitry; Timmermans, Mary-Louise; Krishfield, Richard; Bamber, Jonathan L

    2015-10-13

    Between 1948 and 1996, mean annual environmental parameters in the Arctic experienced a well-pronounced decadal variability with two basic circulation patterns: cyclonic and anticyclonic alternating at 5 to 7 year intervals. During cyclonic regimes, low sea-level atmospheric pressure (SLP) dominated over the Arctic Ocean driving sea ice and the upper ocean counterclockwise; the Arctic atmosphere was relatively warm and humid, and freshwater flux from the Arctic Ocean towards the subarctic seas was intensified. By contrast, during anticylonic circulation regimes, high SLP dominated driving sea ice and the upper ocean clockwise. Meanwhile, the atmosphere was cold and dry and the freshwater flux from the Arctic to the subarctic seas was reduced. Since 1997, however, the Arctic system has been under the influence of an anticyclonic circulation regime (17 years) with a set of environmental parameters that are atypical for this regime. We discuss a hypothesis explaining the causes and mechanisms regulating the intensity and duration of Arctic circulation regimes, and speculate how changes in freshwater fluxes from the Arctic Ocean and Greenland impact environmental conditions and interrupt their decadal variability. © 2015 The Authors.

  15. Transitions of social-ecological subsistence systems in the Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Per Fauchald

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available Transitions of social-ecological systems (SES expose governance systems to new challenges. This is particularly so in the Arctic where resource systems are increasingly subjected to global warming, industrial development and globalization which subsequently alter the local SES dynamics. Based on common-pool resource theory, we developed a dynamic conceptual model explaining how exogenous drivers might alter a traditional subsistence system from a provisioning to an appropriation actions situation. In a provisioning action situation the resource users do not control the resource level but adapt to the fluctuating availability of resources, and the collective challenge revolve around securing the subsistence in the community. An increased harvest pressure enabled by exogenous drivers could transform the SES to an appropriation action situation where the collective challenge has changed to avoid overuse of a common-pool resource. The model was used as a focal lens to investigate the premises for broad-scale transitions of subsistence-oriented SESs in Arctic Alaska, Canada and Greenland. We synthesized data from documents, official statistics and grey and scientific literature to explore the different components of our model. Our synthesis suggests that the traditional Arctic subsistence SESs mostly comply with a provisioning action situation. Despite population growth and available technology; urbanization, increased wage labor and importation of food have reduced the resource demand, and we find no evidence for a broad-scale transition to an appropriation action situation throughout the Western Arctic. However, appropriation ­challenges have emerged in some cases either as a consequence of commercialization of the resource or by severely reduced resource stocks due to various exogenous drivers. Future transitions of SESs could be triggered by the emergence of commercial local food markets and Arctic warming. In particular, Arctic warming is an

  16. Bromine measurements in ozone depleted air over the Arctic Ocean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. A. Neuman

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available In situ measurements of ozone, photochemically active bromine compounds, and other trace gases over the Arctic Ocean in April 2008 are used to examine the chemistry and geographical extent of ozone depletion in the arctic marine boundary layer (MBL. Data were obtained from the NOAA WP-3D aircraft during the Aerosol, Radiation, and Cloud Processes affecting Arctic Climate (ARCPAC study and the NASA DC-8 aircraft during the Arctic Research of the Composition of the Troposphere from Aircraft and Satellites (ARCTAS study. Fast (1 s and sensitive (detection limits at the low pptv level measurements of BrCl and BrO were obtained from three different chemical ionization mass spectrometer (CIMS instruments, and soluble bromide was measured with a mist chamber. The CIMS instruments also detected Br2. Subsequent laboratory studies showed that HOBr rapidly converts to Br2 on the Teflon instrument inlets. This detected Br2 is identified as active bromine and represents a lower limit of the sum HOBr + Br2. The measured active bromine is shown to likely be HOBr during daytime flights in the arctic. In the MBL over the Arctic Ocean, soluble bromide and active bromine were consistently elevated and ozone was depleted. Ozone depletion and active bromine enhancement were confined to the MBL that was capped by a temperature inversion at 200–500 m altitude. In ozone-depleted air, BrO rarely exceeded 10 pptv and was always substantially lower than soluble bromide that was as high as 40 pptv. BrCl was rarely enhanced above the 2 pptv detection limit, either in the MBL, over Alaska, or in the arctic free troposphere.

  17. Persistent organic pollutants in ringed seals from the Russian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Savinov, Vladimir; Muir, Derek C G; Svetochev, Vladislav; Svetocheva, Olga; Belikov, Stanislav; Boltunov, Andrey; Alekseeva, Ludmila; Reiersen, Lars-Otto; Savinova, Tatiana

    2011-06-15

    Organochlorine compounds total DDT (ΣDDT), total HCH isomers (ΣHCH), toxaphenes (sum of Parlar 26, 50, 62), mirex, endrin, methoxychlor, total chlorinated benzenes (ΣCBz), total chlordane compounds (ΣCHL), polychlorinated biphenyls (total of 56 congeners; ΣPCBs), polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and furans (PCDD/Fs), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (sum of 7 tri- to hepta congeners; ΣPBDEs) were analysed in the blubber of adult ringed seals from the four areas of the Russian Arctic (White Sea, Barents Sea, Kara Sea and Chukchi Sea) collected in 2001-2005. Ringed seals from the south-western part of the Kara Sea (Dikson Island - Yenisei estuary) were the most contaminated with ΣDDTs, ΣPCBs, ΣCHL, and mirex as compared with those found in the other three areas of Russian Arctic, while the highest mean concentrations of ΣHCHs and PCDD/Fs were found in the blubber of ringed seals from the Chukchi Sea and the White Sea, respectively. Among all organochlorine compounds measured in ringed seals from the European part of the Russian Arctic, concentrations of ΣDDT and ΣPCBs only were higher as compared with the other Arctic regions. Levels of all other organochlorine compounds were similar or lower than in seals from Svalbard, Alaska, the Canadian Arctic and Greenland. ΣPBDEs were found in all ringed seal samples analysed. There were no significant differences between ΣPBDE concentrations found in the blubber of ringed seals from the three studied areas of the European part of the Russian Arctic, while PBDE contamination level in ringed seals from the Chukchi Sea was 30-50 times lower. ΣPBDE levels in the blubber of seals from the European part of the Russian Arctic are slightly higher than in ringed seals from the Canadian Arctic, Alaska, and western Greenland but lower compared to ringed seals from Svalbard and eastern Greenland. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Influence of sea ice on Arctic coasts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnhart, K. R.; Kay, J. E.; Overeem, I.; Anderson, R. S.

    2017-12-01

    Coasts form the dynamic interface between the terrestrial and oceanic systems. In the Arctic, and in much of the world, the coast is a focal point for population, infrastructure, biodiversity, and ecosystem services. A key difference between Arctic and temperate coasts is the presence of sea ice. Changes in sea ice cover can influence the coast because (1) the length of the sea ice-free season controls the time over which nearshore water can interact with the land, and (2) the location of the sea ice edge controls the fetch over which storm winds can interact with open ocean water, which in turn governs nearshore water level and wave field. We first focus on the interaction of sea ice and ice-rich coasts. We combine satellite records of sea ice with a model for wind-driven storm surge and waves to estimate how changes in the sea ice-free season have impacted the nearshore hydrodynamic environment along Alaska's Beaufort Sea Coast for the period 1979-2012. This region has experienced some of the greatest changes in both sea ice cover and coastal erosion rates in the Arctic: the median length of the open-water season has expanded by 90 percent, while coastal erosion rates have more than doubled from 8.7 to 19 m yr-1. At Drew Point, NW winds increase shoreline water levels that control the incision of a submarine notch, the rate-limiting step of coastal retreat. The maximum water-level setup at Drew Point has increased consistently with increasing fetch. We extend our analysis to the entire Arctic using both satellite-based observations and global coupled climate model output from the Community Earth System Model Large Ensemble (CESM-LE) project. This 30-member ensemble employs a 1-degree version of the CESM-CAM5 historical forcing for the period 1920-2005, and RCP 8.5 forcing from 2005-2100. A control model run with constant pre-industrial (1850) forcing characterizes internal variability in a constant climate. Finally, we compare observations and model results to

  19. Arctic Sea Level Reconstruction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Svendsen, Peter Limkilde

    Reconstruction of historical Arctic sea level is very difficult due to the limited coverage and quality of tide gauge and altimetry data in the area. This thesis addresses many of these issues, and discusses strategies to help achieve a stable and plausible reconstruction of Arctic sea level from...... 1950 to today.The primary record of historical sea level, on the order of several decades to a few centuries, is tide gauges. Tide gauge records from around the world are collected in the Permanent Service for Mean Sea Level (PSMSL) database, and includes data along the Arctic coasts. A reasonable...... amount of data is available along the Norwegian and Russian coasts since 1950, and most published research on Arctic sea level extends cautiously from these areas. Very little tide gauge data is available elsewhere in the Arctic, and records of a length of several decades,as generally recommended for sea-level...

  20. Identification of unrecognized tundra fire events on the north slope of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Benjamin M.; Breen, Amy L.; Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Mann, Daniel H.; Rocha, Adrian V.; Grosse, Guido; Arp, Christopher D.; Kunz, Michael L.; Walker, Donald A.

    2013-01-01

    Characteristics of the natural fire regime are poorly resolved in the Arctic, even though fire may play an important role cycling carbon stored in tundra vegetation and soils to the atmosphere. In the course of studying vegetation and permafrost-terrain characteristics along a chronosequence of tundra burn sites from AD 1977, 1993, and 2007 on the North Slope of Alaska, we discovered two large, previously unrecognized tundra fires. The Meade River fire burned an estimated 500 km2 and the Ketik River fire burned an estimated 1200 km2. Based on radiocarbon dating of charred twigs, analysis of historic aerial photography, and regional climate proxy data, these fires likely occurred between AD 1880 and 1920. Together, these events double the estimated burn area on the North Slope of Alaska over the last ~100 to 130 years. Assessment of vegetation succession along the century-scale chronosequence of tundra fire disturbances demonstrates for the first time on the North Slope of Alaska that tundra fires can facilitate the invasion of tundra by shrubs. Degradation of ice-rich permafrost was also evident at the fire sites and likely aided in the presumed changes of the tundra vegetation postfire. Other previously unrecognized tundra fire events likely exist in Alaska and other Arctic regions and identification of these sites is important for better understanding disturbance regimes and carbon cycling in Arctic tundra.

  1. Winter habitat selection by caribou in relation to lichen abundance, wildfires, grazing, and landscape characteristics in northwest Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kyle Joly; F. Stuart III Chapin; David R. Klein

    2010-01-01

    Lichens are an important winter forage for large, migratory herds of caribou (Rangifer tarandus granti) that can influence population dynamics through effects on body condition and in turn calf recruitment and survival. We investigated the vegetative and physiographic characteristics of winter range of the Western Arctic Herd in northwest Alaska, one...

  2. Red-throated loons (Gavia stellata) breeding in Alaska, USA, are exposed to PCBs while on their Asian wintering grounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmutz, J.A.; Trust, K.A.; Matz, A.C.

    2009-01-01

    Red-throated loons (Gavia stellata) breeding in Alaska declined 53% during 1977-1993. We compare concentrations of environmental contaminants in red-throated loons among four nesting areas in Alaska and discuss potential ramifications of exposure on reproductive success and population trends. Eggs from the four areas had similar total polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) concentrations, but eggs from the Arctic coastal plain had different congener profiles and greater toxic equivalents (TEQs) than eggs from elsewhere. Satellite telemetry data indicate that red-throated loons from the Arctic coastal plain in northern Alaska winter in southeast Asia, while those breeding elsewhere in Alaska winter in North America. Different wintering areas may lead to differential PCB accumulation among red-throated loon populations. For eggs from the Arctic coastal plain, TEQs were great enough to postulate PCB-associated reproductive effects in piscivores. The correlation between migration patterns and PCB profiles suggests that red-throated loons breeding in northern Alaska are exposed to PCBs while on their Asian wintering grounds.

  3. Chloroform emissions from the Alaskan Arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhew, Robert C.; Teh, Yit Arn; Abel, Triffid; Atwood, Alyssa; Mazéas, Olivier

    2008-11-01

    Chloroform (trichloromethane, CHCl3) is the second largest carrier of natural chlorine in the troposphere after methyl chloride, contributing to the reactive chlorine burden in the troposphere and to ozone destruction in the stratosphere. Here we report CHCl3 flux measurements from coastal and interior tundra sites in northern Alaska, showing that the Arctic tundra can contribute substantial amounts of CHCl3 to the atmosphere. Emissions were measured during the 2005 and 2006 growing seasons over a range of vegetation types and hydrologic conditions, from wet sedge coastal to upland tussock tundra. Overall emissions averaged 45 nmol m-2 d-1, but fluxes were highly variable, ranging from tundra. Laboratory soil core incubations show that flooded conditions sharply reduce emission rates. A rough extrapolation suggests that the tundra globally could account for 1-2% of the total estimated source of atmospheric CHCl3.

  4. A History of Coastal Research in the Arctic (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, H. J.; McGraw, M.

    2009-12-01

    Laboratory in 1947. Although these organizations were broad based, they occasionally had research projects devoted to arctic shorelines. In the USSR, research by Felix Are on shore retreat in the Arctic set the pattern for detail. Because the concentration of people (native as well as non-native) in the Arctic tends to be along the coast(such as Barrow, Alaska and Tuktoyaktuk, Canada) or rivers, some of the earliest research dealt with erosion that threatened settlements. In the process, consideration was given to such factors as sea ice, ground ice and permafrost, sediment type, long-shore drift, tides, wave action, and river discharge. Although there were scattered relevant projects, it was not until the last quarter of the 20th century that teamwork on arctic coastal research began to make its mark. Especially notable are the Russian-German cooperative study of the Lena Delta in 1998 and the International Arctic Science Committee's project on Arctic Coastal Dynamics. The number of detailed studies from such initiatives has increased during the last two decades.

  5. Large-scale climate controls of Interior Alaska river ice breakup

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, D.; Bieniek, P. A.; Bhatt, U. S.; Rundquist, L.; Lindsey, S.; Zhang, X.; Thoman, R.

    2010-12-01

    Frozen rivers in the Arctic serve as critical highways due to lack of roads, therefore it is important to understand the key mechanisms that control the timing of river ice breakup. The relationships between springtime Interior Alaska river ice breakup date and the large-scale climate are investigated for the Yukon, Tanana, Kuskokwim, and Chena Rivers for the 1949-2008 period. The most important climate factor that determines breakup is April-May surface air temperatures (SATs). Breakup tends to occur earlier when Alaska April-May SATs and river flow are above normal. Spring SATs are influenced by storms approaching the state from the Gulf of Alaska, which are part of large-scale climate anomalies that compare favorably with ENSO. During the warm phase of ENSO fewer storms travel into the Gulf of Alaska during the spring, resulting in a decrease of cloud cover over Alaska, which increases surface solar insolation. This results in warmer than average springtime SATs and an earlier breakup date. The opposite holds true for the cold phase of ENSO. Increased wintertime precipitation over Alaska has a secondary impact on earlier breakup by increasing spring river discharge. Improved springtime Alaska temperature predictions would enhance the ability to forecast river ice breakup timing.

  6. Arctic ice management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desch, Steven J.; Smith, Nathan; Groppi, Christopher; Vargas, Perry; Jackson, Rebecca; Kalyaan, Anusha; Nguyen, Peter; Probst, Luke; Rubin, Mark E.; Singleton, Heather; Spacek, Alexander; Truitt, Amanda; Zaw, Pye Pye; Hartnett, Hilairy E.

    2017-01-01

    As the Earth's climate has changed, Arctic sea ice extent has decreased drastically. It is likely that the late-summer Arctic will be ice-free as soon as the 2030s. This loss of sea ice represents one of the most severe positive feedbacks in the climate system, as sunlight that would otherwise be reflected by sea ice is absorbed by open ocean. It is unlikely that CO2 levels and mean temperatures can be decreased in time to prevent this loss, so restoring sea ice artificially is an imperative. Here we investigate a means for enhancing Arctic sea ice production by using wind power during the Arctic winter to pump water to the surface, where it will freeze more rapidly. We show that where appropriate devices are employed, it is possible to increase ice thickness above natural levels, by about 1 m over the course of the winter. We examine the effects this has in the Arctic climate, concluding that deployment over 10% of the Arctic, especially where ice survival is marginal, could more than reverse current trends of ice loss in the Arctic, using existing industrial capacity. We propose that winter ice thickening by wind-powered pumps be considered and assessed as part of a multipronged strategy for restoring sea ice and arresting the strongest feedbacks in the climate system.

  7. Arctic Climate Systems Analysis

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ivey, Mark D. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Robinson, David G. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Boslough, Mark B. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Backus, George A. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Peterson, Kara J. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); van Bloemen Waanders, Bart G. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Swiler, Laura Painton [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Desilets, Darin Maurice [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Reinert, Rhonda Karen [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2015-03-01

    This study began with a challenge from program area managers at Sandia National Laboratories to technical staff in the energy, climate, and infrastructure security areas: apply a systems-level perspective to existing science and technology program areas in order to determine technology gaps, identify new technical capabilities at Sandia that could be applied to these areas, and identify opportunities for innovation. The Arctic was selected as one of these areas for systems level analyses, and this report documents the results. In this study, an emphasis was placed on the arctic atmosphere since Sandia has been active in atmospheric research in the Arctic since 1997. This study begins with a discussion of the challenges and benefits of analyzing the Arctic as a system. It goes on to discuss current and future needs of the defense, scientific, energy, and intelligence communities for more comprehensive data products related to the Arctic; assess the current state of atmospheric measurement resources available for the Arctic; and explain how the capabilities at Sandia National Laboratories can be used to address the identified technological, data, and modeling needs of the defense, scientific, energy, and intelligence communities for Arctic support.

  8. Phytomass in southeast Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bert R. Mead

    1998-01-01

    Phytomass tables are presented for the southeast Alaska archipelago. Average phytomass for each sampled species of tree, shrub, grass, forb, lichen, and moss in 10 forest and 4 nonforest vegetation types is shown.

  9. Geothermal Technologies Program: Alaska

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    2005-02-01

    This fact sheets provides a summary of geothermal potential, issues, and current development in Alaska. This fact sheet was developed as part of DOE's GeoPowering the West initiative, part of the Geothermal Technologies Program.

  10. Population Structure of Two Rabies Hosts Relative to the Known Distribution of Rabies Virus Variants in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldsmith, Elizabeth W.; Renshaw, Benjamin; Clement, Christopher J.; Himschoot, Elizabeth A.; Hundertmark, Kris J.; Hueffer, Karsten

    2015-01-01

    For pathogens that infect multiple species the distinction between reservoir hosts and spillover hosts is often difficult. In Alaska, three variants of the arctic rabies virus exist with distinct spatial distributions. We test the hypothesis that rabies virus variant distribution corresponds to the population structure of the primary rabies hosts in Alaska, arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus) and red foxes (V. vulpes) in order to possibly distinguish reservoir and spill over hosts. We used mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequence and nine microsatellites to assess population structure in those two species. mtDNA structure did not correspond to rabies virus variant structure in either species. Microsatellite analyses gave varying results. Bayesian clustering found 2 groups of arctic foxes in the coastal tundra region, but for red foxes it identified tundra and boreal types. Spatial Bayesian clustering and spatial principal components analysis identified 3 and 4 groups of arctic foxes, respectively, closely matching the distribution of rabies virus variants in the state. Red foxes, conversely, showed eight clusters comprising 2 regions (boreal and tundra) with much admixture. These results run contrary to previous beliefs that arctic fox show no fine-scale spatial population structure. While we cannot rule out that the red fox is part of the maintenance host community for rabies in Alaska, the distribution of virus variants appears to be driven primarily by the artic fox Therefore we show that host population genetics can be utilized to distinguish between maintenance and spillover hosts when used in conjunction with other approaches. PMID:26661691

  11. Arctic Shield 2015 Field Campaign Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stafford, Robert A [Pacific Northwest National Lab. (PNNL), Richland, WA (United States); Ivey, Mark [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2016-05-01

    During the week of July 13, 2015, the U.S. Coast Guard’s (USCG) Research and Development Center partnered with Conoco Phillips through a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement to conduct a Search and Rescue (SAR) exercise off of Oliktok Point, Alaska. The Coast Guard was interested in exploring how unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) can be used to enhance capabilities for its SAR mission and gain a better understanding of how it could work jointly with private industry for response operations in remote regions. Participants in the exercise included Coast Guard Pacific Area Command, Coast Guard Cutter Healy, Coast Guard District Seventeen, Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak, and Conoco Phillips. Joining Conoco Phillips were their partners Insitu (a Boeing company), Era Helicopter, and Era Helicopter’s partner Priority One. Other government agencies supporting the exercise were the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Climate Research Facility, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Federal Aviation Administration, and the North Slope Borough of the state of Alaska. The exercise scenario involved a simulated small aircraft crash offshore where the survivors took refuge in a 6-man life raft. The aircraft’s last known position and asset availability required the Coast Guard to coordinate the response with Conoco Phillips. This included the use of an Insitu-operated ScanEagle UAS, flown from DOE-ARM’s Sandia National Laboratory-operated facility at Oliktok Point, and manned aircraft provided by both the Coast Guard’s Forward Operating Location in Deadhorse and Era Helicopter. Lessons learned from this exercise will help the Coast Guard understand how to best collaborate with private industry on the North Slope during response operations and develop requirements for UAS performing Coast Guard missions in the Arctic environment. For the ARM facility, the exercise demonstrated some of the opportunities and

  12. Demography of Dall's sheep in northwestern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kleckner, Christopher; Udevitz, Mark S.; Adams, Layne G.; Shults, Brad S.

    2003-01-01

    Dall’s sheep in northwestern Alaska declined in the early 1990s following the severe 1989-90 and 1990-91 winters. In the Baird Mountains of Noatak National Preserve, estimates of adult sheep declined by 50% from 800 in 1989 to under 400 in 1991. Population counts remained low throughout 1991 to 1996, reaching a minimum of 244 adult sheep in 1996. Few lambs were observed during annual midsummer aerial surveys in 1991 to 1994. We suspect that these declines resulted from a combination of poorer nutritional condition and increased vulnerability of sheep to predation resulting from severe winter conditions.As a result of these declines, both subsistence and sport hunting seasons were closed by emergency order in 1991, resulting in substantial management controversy. The affected publics, although willing to accept the closures, questioned the validity of the sheep survey data and strongly emphasized their interest in restoring harvests as soon as populations increased sufficiently. In 1995 the Northwest Arctic Regional Advisory Council, the local advisory committee for the Federal Subsistence Board, passed a motion supporting efforts to initiate research on sheep populations in the region to better understand the factors limiting sheep populations and to evaluate sheep survey methodologies.Currently estimates of Dall’s sheep population size and composition in the western Brooks Range are based on intensive fixed-wing aerial surveys conducted annually since 1986 in areas including the Baird Mountains. The annual variation in recent Baird Mountains aerial counts cannot be explained with reasonable assumptions about reproduction and survival, suggesting that there is some variability in the proportion of the population observed each year or that a substantial number of sheep move during the survey. Prior to our research, no attempt had been made to estimate visibility bias or precision for these surveys.Our understanding of Dall’s sheep population biology comes

  13. STREPTOCOCCUS PHOCAE ISOLATED FROM A SPOTTED SEAL (PHOCA LARGHA) WITH PYOMETRA IN ALASKA

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hueffer, Karsten; Lieske, Camilla L.; McGilvary, Lisa M.; Hare, Rebekah F.; Miller, Debra L.; O’Hara, Todd M.

    2013-01-01

    A spotted seal harvested by subsistence hunters in Kotzebue Sound, Alaska (USA), showed a grossly enlarged uterus and associated lymph nodes. Streptococcus phocae was isolated from the purulent uterine discharge. Histopathologic examination revealed inflammation that was limited to the uterine mucosa. Lymph nodes draining the affected organ were reactive but no evidence of active infection was found in the lymph nodes. This report is the first Streptococcus phocae isolated from spotted seals as well as the first report of pyometra as the main pathologic finding associated with this pathogen. Isolation of this pathogen from Alaska expands the reported range to arctic pinnipeds. Zoonotic potential remains unknown. PMID:22946378

  14. Tectonic framework of petroliferous rocks in Alaska: hydrocarbons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grantz, Arthur; Kirschner, C.E.

    1976-01-01

    Alaska, which contains about 28% of the land and continental shelf of the United States, is estimated by the U.S. Geological Survey to contain about one third of the nation's undiscovered oil and about one sixth of its undiscovered natural gas. The Survey estimates that fields discovered in Alaska through 1972 ultimately may produce about 26 billion bbl of oil and 68 Tcf of natural gas. In northern Alaska, Paleozoic and Mesozoic shelf and slope carbonate and clastic rocks of the Brooks Range orogen were thrust relatively northward over the depressed south margin of the Paleozoic and Mesozoic Arctic platform. A foredeep, the Colville geosyncline, developed across the depressed margin of the platform in earliest Cretaceous time. Detritus from the Brooks Range filled the foredeep and prograded northward to fill the Cretaceous and Tertiary North Chukchi and Umiat-Camden basins and form the progradational Beaufort shelf. The largest petroleum reserves (Prudhoe Bay and associated fields) and the best prospects for additional large discoveries in Alaska lie in the areally extensive upper Paleozoic to Tertiary carbonate and clastic rocks of northern Alaska. In southern Alaska, a series of arc-trench systems developed on oceanic rocks during Jurassic and Cretaceous time. Between these arcs and the metamorphic (continental) terranes of east-central and northern Alaska, large back-arc and arc-trench gap basins received thick volcanic and detrital deposits. These deposits were extensively, and commonly intensely, deformed and disrupted by mid-Jurassic to Tertiary plutonism, Laramide oroclinal bending, wrench faulting, and arc-related compression. This deformation, coupled with low porosity (in part produced by diagenetic mobilization of labile constituents), has left these rocks with only modest, local prospects for petroleum. Laramide events compressed and consolidated ("continentalized") the late Mesozoic back-arc basin deposits and welded them to the older continental

  15. Environmental assessment: Kotzebue Wind Installation Project, Kotzebue, Alaska

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1998-05-01

    The DOE is proposing to provide financial assistance to the Kotzebue Electric Association to expand its existing wind installation near Kotzebue, Alaska. Like many rural Alaska towns, Kotzebue uses diesel-powered generators to produce its electricity, the high cost of which is currently subsidized by the Alaska State government. In an effort to provide a cost effective and clean source of electricity, reduce dependence on diesel fuel, and reduce air pollutants, the DOE is proposing to fund an experimental wind installation to test commercially available wind turbines under Arctic conditions. The results would provide valuable information to other Alaska communities experiencing similar dependence on diesel-powered generators. The environmental assessment for the proposed wind installation assessed impacts to biological resources, land use, electromagnetic interference, coastal zone, air quality, cultural resources, and noise. It was determined that the project does not constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment. Therefore, the preparation of an environmental impact statement is not required, and DOE has issued a Finding of No Significant Impact.

  16. Environmental assessment: Kotzebue Wind Installation Project, Kotzebue, Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-05-01

    The DOE is proposing to provide financial assistance to the Kotzebue Electric Association to expand its existing wind installation near Kotzebue, Alaska. Like many rural Alaska towns, Kotzebue uses diesel-powered generators to produce its electricity, the high cost of which is currently subsidized by the Alaska State government. In an effort to provide a cost effective and clean source of electricity, reduce dependence on diesel fuel, and reduce air pollutants, the DOE is proposing to fund an experimental wind installation to test commercially available wind turbines under Arctic conditions. The results would provide valuable information to other Alaska communities experiencing similar dependence on diesel-powered generators. The environmental assessment for the proposed wind installation assessed impacts to biological resources, land use, electromagnetic interference, coastal zone, air quality, cultural resources, and noise. It was determined that the project does not constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment. Therefore, the preparation of an environmental impact statement is not required, and DOE has issued a Finding of No Significant Impact

  17. Future distribution of tundra refugia in northern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hope, Andrew G.; Waltari, Eric; Payer, David C.; Cook, Joseph A.; Talbot, Sandra L.

    2013-01-01

    Climate change in the Arctic is a growing concern for natural resource conservation and management as a result of accelerated warming and associated shifts in the distribution and abundance of northern species. We introduce a predictive framework for assessing the future extent of Arctic tundra and boreal biomes in northern Alaska. We use geo-referenced museum specimens to predict the velocity of distributional change into the next century and compare predicted tundra refugial areas with current land-use. The reliability of predicted distributions, including differences between fundamental and realized niches, for two groups of species is strengthened by fossils and genetic signatures of demographic shifts. Evolutionary responses to environmental change through the late Quaternary are generally consistent with past distribution models. Predicted future refugia overlap managed areas and indicate potential hotspots for tundra diversity. To effectively assess future refugia, variable responses among closely related species to climate change warrants careful consideration of both evolutionary and ecological histories.

  18. Live from the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warnick, W. K.; Haines-Stiles, G.; Warburton, J.; Sunwood, K.

    2003-12-01

    For reasons of geography and geophysics, the poles of our planet, the Arctic and Antarctica, are places where climate change appears first: they are global canaries in the mine shaft. But while Antarctica (its penguins and ozone hole, for example) has been relatively well-documented in recent books, TV programs and journalism, the far North has received somewhat less attention. This project builds on and advances what has been done to date to share the people, places, and stories of the North with all Americans through multiple media, over several years. In a collaborative project between the Arctic Research Consortium of the United States (ARCUS) and PASSPORT TO KNOWLEDGE, Live from the Arctic will bring the Arctic environment to the public through a series of primetime broadcasts, live and taped programming, interactive virtual field trips, and webcasts. The five-year project will culminate during the 2007-2008 International Polar Year (IPY). Live from the Arctic will: A. Promote global understanding about the value and world -wide significance of the Arctic, B. Bring cutting-edge research to both non-formal and formal education communities, C. Provide opportunities for collaboration between arctic scientists, arctic communities, and the general public. Content will focus on the following four themes. 1. Pan-Arctic Changes and Impacts on Land (i.e. snow cover; permafrost; glaciers; hydrology; species composition, distribution, and abundance; subsistence harvesting) 2. Pan-Arctic Changes and Impacts in the Sea (i.e. salinity, temperature, currents, nutrients, sea ice, marine ecosystems (including people, marine mammals and fisheries) 3. Pan-Arctic Changes and Impacts in the Atmosphere (i.e. precipitation and evaporation; effects on humans and their communities) 4. Global Perspectives (i.e. effects on humans and communities, impacts to rest of the world) In The Earth is Faster Now, a recent collection of comments by members of indigenous arctic peoples, arctic

  19. The Arctic Turn

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rahbek-Clemmensen, Jon

    2018-01-01

    , a few states – Canada, Denmark, and the United States – sent other representatives. There was nothing unusual about the absence of Per Stig Møller, the Danish foreign minister – a Danish foreign minister had only once attended an Arctic Council ministerial meeting (Arctic Council 2016). Møller......In October 2006, representatives of the Arctic governments met in Salekhard in northern Siberia for the biennial Arctic Council ministerial meeting to discuss how the council could combat regional climate change, among other issues. While most capitals were represented by their foreign minister...... and Greenlandic affairs had mainly been about managing fishing quotas. Though crucial for Danish-Greenlandic relations, such issues were hardly top priorities for Her Majesty’s Foreign Service....

  20. Fire and Ice: Surprises in a Warming Arctic Land Surface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shaver, G. R.

    2008-12-01

    Long term predictions based on short-term observations are a notoriously risky enterprise. In arctic tundra landscapes, as in many complex systems, long-term change is rarely a linear or monotonic process. More often than not major changes in system state occur abruptly, along trajectories that are unpredictable from knowledge of short-term process controls. Examples of such changes can be found in long-term experimental manipulations to both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems near Toolik Lake, Alaska, and in responses to natural and anthropogenic disturbances including a recent, very large tundra wildfire. Monitoring of these manipulations and disturbances over many years invariably leads to surprises that would not have been observed in relatively stable arctic ecosystems. One specific example is the interaction between climatic warming, shrub abundance in tundras, soil nutrient turnover, and permafrost.

  1. Simulating Arctic clouds during Arctic Radiation- IceBridge Sea and Ice Experiment (ARISE)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bromwich, D. H.; Hines, K. M.; Wang, S. H.

    2015-12-01

    The representation within global and regional models of the extensive low-level cloud cover over polar oceans remains a critical challenge for quantitative studies and forecasts of polar climate. In response, the polar-optimized version of the Weather Research and Forecasting model (Polar WRF) is used to simulate the meteorology, boundary layer, and Arctic clouds during the September-October 2014 Arctic Radiation- IceBridge Sea and Ice Experiment (ARISE) project. Polar WRF was developed with several adjustments to the sea ice thermodynamics in WRF. ARISE was based out of Eielson Air Force Base near Fairbanks, Alaska and included multiple instrumented C-130 aircraft flights over open water and sea ice of the Beaufort Sea. Arctic boundary layer clouds were frequently observed within cold northeasterly flow over the open ocean and ice. Preliminary results indicate these clouds were primarily liquid water, with characteristics differing between open water and sea ice surfaces. Simulated clouds are compared to ARISE observations. Furthermore, Polar WRF simulations are run for the August-September 2008 Arctic Summer Cloud Ocean Study (ASCOS) for comparison to the ARISE. Preliminary analysis shows that simulated low-level water clouds over the sea ice are too extensive during the the second half of the ASCOS field program. Alternatives and improvements to the Polar WRF cloud schemes are considered. The goal is to use the ARISE and ASCOS observations to achieve an improved polar supplement to the WRF code for open water and sea ice that can be provided to the Polar WRF community.

  2. "We are the Arctic"

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Robert Chr.; Ren, Carina Bregnholm; Mahadevan, Renuka

    2018-01-01

    In this article, we explore the 2016 Arctic Winter Games as a site for Arctic, Indigenous and national identity-building, drawing on fieldwork from the planning and execution of AWG 2016 and surveys conducted with participant and stakeholder groups. We show that although the AWG 2016 event is see...... positions also. In practice, competition at this sporting event extends to identity discourses competing for hegemony, but the games also create spaces for identity negotiation and willful identity entanglement....

  3. Effect of Arctic Amplification on Design Snow Loads in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-09-01

    Environmental Research and Development Program, Project Number 2435. We thank SERDP program manager ix Dr. John Hall for his support and insightful...Trends (1979–2009). Journal of Climate 24:5691–5712. doi:10.1175/JCLI-D-11-00081.1. Meinshausen, M., S. J. Smith, K. Calvin , J. S. Daniel, M. L. T

  4. The Need and Opportunity for an Integrated Research, Development and Testing Center in the Alaskan High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardesty, J. O.; Ivey, M.; Helsel, F.; Dexheimer, D.; Lucero, D. A.; Cahill, C. F.; Roesler, E. L.

    2017-12-01

    This presentation will make the case for development of a permanent integrated High Arctic research and testing center at Oliktok Point, Alaska; taking advantage of existing assets and infrastructure, controlled airspace, an active UAS program and local partnerships. Arctic research stations provide critical monitoring and research on climate change for conditions and trends in the Arctic. The US Chair of the Arctic Council increased awareness of gaps in our understanding of Artic systems, scarce monitoring, lack of infrastructure and readiness for emergency response. Less sea ice brings competition for commercial shipping and resource extraction. Search and rescue, pollution mitigation and safe navigation need real-time, wide-area monitoring to respond to events. Multi-national responses for international traffic will drive a greater security presence to protect citizens and sovereign interests. To address research and technology gaps, there is a national need for a US High Arctic Center (USHARC) with an approach to partner stakeholders from science, safety and security to develop comprehensive solutions. The Station should offer year-round use, logistic support and access to varied ecological settings; phased adaptation to changing needs; and support testing of technologies such as multiple autonomous platforms, renewable energies and microgrids, and sensors in Arctic settings. We propose an Arctic Center at Oliktok Point, Alaska. Combined with the Toolik Field Station and Barrow Environmental Observatory, they form a US network of Arctic Stations. An Oliktok Point Station can provide complementary and unique assets that include: access via land, sea and air; coastal and terrestrial ecologies; controlled airspaces across land and ocean; medical and logistic support; atmospheric observations from an adjacent ARM facility; connections to Barrow and Toolik; fiber-optic communications; University of Alaska Fairbanks UAS Test Facility partnership; and an airstrip and

  5. Seasonal cues of Arctic grayling movement in a small Arctic stream: the importance of surface water connectivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heim, Kurt C.; Wipfli, Mark S.; Whitman, Matthew S.; Arp, Christopher D.; Adams, Jeff; Falke, Jeffrey A.

    2015-01-01

    In Arctic ecosystems, freshwater fish migrate seasonally between productive shallow water habitats that freeze in winter and deep overwinter refuge in rivers and lakes. How these movements relate to seasonal hydrology is not well understood. We used passive integrated transponder tags and stream wide antennae to track 1035 Arctic grayling in Crea Creek, a seasonally flowing beaded stream on the Arctic Coastal Plain, Alaska. Migration of juvenile and adult fish into Crea Creek peaked in June immediately after ice break-up in the stream. Fish that entered the stream during periods of high flow and cold stream temperature traveled farther upstream than those entering during periods of lower flow and warmer temperature. We used generalized linear models to relate migration of adult and juvenile fish out of Crea Creek to hydrology. Most adults migrated in late June – early July, and there was best support (Akaike weight = 0.46; w i ) for a model indicating that the rate of migration increased with decreasing discharge. Juvenile migration occurred in two peaks; the early peak consisted of larger juveniles and coincided with adult migration, while the later peak occurred shortly before freeze-up in September and included smaller juveniles. A model that included discharge, minimum stream temperature, year, season, and mean size of potential migrants was most strongly supported (w i  = 0.86). Juvenile migration rate increased sharply as daily minimum stream temperature decreased, suggesting fish respond to impending freeze-up. We found fish movements to be intimately tied to the strong seasonality of discharge and temperature, and demonstrate the importance of small stream connectivity for migratory Arctic grayling during the entire open-water period. The ongoing and anticipated effects of climate change and petroleum development on Arctic hydrology (e.g. reduced stream connectivity, earlier peak flows, increased evapotranspiration) have important implications

  6. Contemporary Arctic Sea Level

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cazenave, A. A.

    2017-12-01

    During recent decades, the Arctic region has warmed at a rate about twice the rest of the globe. Sea ice melting is increasing and the Greenland ice sheet is losing mass at an accelerated rate. Arctic warming, decrease in the sea ice cover and fresh water input to the Arctic ocean may eventually impact the Arctic sea level. In this presentation, we review our current knowledge of contemporary Arctic sea level changes. Until the beginning of the 1990s, Arctic sea level variations were essentially deduced from tide gauges located along the Russian and Norwegian coastlines. Since then, high inclination satellite altimetry missions have allowed measuring sea level over a large portion of the Arctic Ocean (up to 80 degree north). Measuring sea level in the Arctic by satellite altimetry is challenging because the presence of sea ice cover limits the full capacity of this technique. However adapted processing of raw altimetric measurements significantly increases the number of valid data, hence the data coverage, from which regional sea level variations can be extracted. Over the altimetry era, positive trend patterns are observed over the Beaufort Gyre and along the east coast of Greenland, while negative trends are reported along the Siberian shelf. On average over the Arctic region covered by satellite altimetry, the rate of sea level rise since 1992 is slightly less than the global mea sea level rate (of about 3 mm per year). On the other hand, the interannual variability is quite significant. Space gravimetry data from the GRACE mission and ocean reanalyses provide information on the mass and steric contributions to sea level, hence on the sea level budget. Budget studies show that regional sea level trends over the Beaufort Gyre and along the eastern coast of Greenland, are essentially due to salinity changes. However, in terms of regional average, the net steric component contributes little to the observed sea level trend. The sea level budget in the Arctic

  7. Changing Arctic ecosystems--the role of ecosystem changes across the Boreal-Arctic transition zone on the distribution and abundance of wildlife populations

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNew, Lance; Handel, Colleen; Pearce, John; DeGange, Anthony R.; Holland-Bartels, Leslie; Whalen, Mary

    2013-01-01

    Arctic and boreal ecosystems provide important breeding habitat for more than half of North America’s migratory birds as well as many resident species. Northern landscapes are projected to experience more pronounced climate-related changes in habitat than most other regions. These changes include increases in shrub growth, conversion of tundra to forest, alteration of wetlands, shifts in species’ composition, and changes in the frequency and scale of fires and insect outbreaks. Changing habitat conditions, in turn, may have significant effects on the distribution and abundance of wildlife in these critical northern ecosystems. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is conducting studies in the Boreal–Arctic transition zone of Alaska, an environment of accelerated change in this sensitive margin between Arctic tundra and boreal forest.

  8. Satellite Observations of Arctic Change

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The purpose of this site is to expose NASA satellite data and research on Arctic change in the form of maps that illustrate the changes taking place in the Arctic...

  9. Arctic Rabies – A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prestrud Pål

    2004-03-01

    Full Text Available Rabies seems to persist throughout most arctic regions, and the northern parts of Norway, Sweden and Finland, is the only part of the Arctic where rabies has not been diagnosed in recent time. The arctic fox is the main host, and the same arctic virus variant seems to infect the arctic fox throughout the range of this species. The epidemiology of rabies seems to have certain common characteristics in arctic regions, but main questions such as the maintenance and spread of the disease remains largely unknown. The virus has spread and initiated new epidemics also in other species such as the red fox and the racoon dog. Large land areas and cold climate complicate the control of the disease, but experimental oral vaccination of arctic foxes has been successful. This article summarises the current knowledge and the typical characteristics of arctic rabies including its distribution and epidemiology.

  10. Arctic dimension of global warming

    OpenAIRE

    G. V. Alekseev

    2014-01-01

    A brief assessment of the global warming in the Arctic climate system with the emphasis on sea ice is presented. The Arctic region is coupled to the global climate system by the atmosphere and ocean circulation that providesa major contribution to the Arctic energy budget. On this basis using of special indices it is shown that amplification of warming in the Arctic is associated with the increasing of meridional heat transport from the low latitudes.

  11. Renewable energy and sustainable communities: Alaska's wind generator experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konkel, R Steven

    2013-01-01

    better understanding wind energy potential through resource assessments and new tools for detailed feasibility and project planning, need for comprehensive monitoring and data analysis, and state funding requirements and opportunity costs. The energy policy choices ahead for Alaska will have important implications for Arctic population health, especially for those villages whose relatively small size and remote locations make energy a key component of subsistence lifestyles and community sustainability. Wind generation can contribute to meeting renewable energy goals and is a particularly important resource for rural and remote Alaskan communities currently dependent on diesel fuel for generating electricity and heat.

  12. Renewable energy and sustainable communities: Alaska's wind generator experience†

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Steven Konkel

    2013-08-01

    villages, b. impacts associated with climate change on human health, c. progress in better understanding wind energy potential through resource assessments and new tools for detailed feasibility and project planning, d. need for comprehensive monitoring and data analysis, and e. state funding requirements and opportunity costs. Conclusion . The energy policy choices ahead for Alaska will have important implications for Arctic population health, especially for those villages whose relatively small size and remote locations make energy a key component of subsistence lifestyles and community sustainability. Wind generation can contribute to meeting renewable energy goals and is a particularly important resource for rural and remote Alaskan communities currently dependent on diesel fuel for generating electricity and heat.

  13. Renewable energy and sustainable communities: Alaska's wind generator experience†

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konkel, R. Steven

    2013-01-01

    with climate change on human health,progress in better understanding wind energy potential through resource assessments and new tools for detailed feasibility and project planning,need for comprehensive monitoring and data analysis, andstate funding requirements and opportunity costs. Conclusion The energy policy choices ahead for Alaska will have important implications for Arctic population health, especially for those villages whose relatively small size and remote locations make energy a key component of subsistence lifestyles and community sustainability. Wind generation can contribute to meeting renewable energy goals and is a particularly important resource for rural and remote Alaskan communities currently dependent on diesel fuel for generating electricity and heat. PMID:23971014

  14. Ozone and aerosol distributions measured by airborne lidar during the 1988 Arctic Boundary Layer Experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Browell, Edward V.; Butler, Carolyn F.; Kooi, Susan A.

    1991-01-01

    Consideration is given to O3 and aerosol distributions measured from an aircraft using a DIAL system in order to study the sources and sinks of gases and aerosols over the tundra regions of Alaska during summer 1988. The tropospheric O3 budget over the Arctic was found to be strongly influenced by stratospheric intrusions. Regions of low aerosol scattering and enhanced O3 mixing ratios were usually correlated with descending air from the upper troposphere or lower stratosphere.

  15. Protective Clothing. Part 1. Arctic and Tropical Environments (A Bibliography with Abstracts)

    Science.gov (United States)

    1976-04-01

    Military personnel. Performance (Human)) , (*Arctic regions. Military personnel) , State-of-the- art reviews. Stress(Psychology), Alaska, Canada...and transdisciplinary ; it scrutinizes all disciplines of engineering for relevant information. This is of utmost importance when an inquiry in one...crystals NTIS/PS-75/591/8GSB Display systems, Electroluminescence NTIS/PS-75/742/7GSB Display systems, Graphic arts NTIS/PS-75/791/4GSB Divers

  16. Look again: Revising ideas about the greening of Alaska’s arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geoffrey Koch; Robert Pattison

    2017-01-01

    Alaska’s Arctic tundra is one of the most rapidly warming regions in the world. For years, scientists have been working to interpret the effects of its changing climate and determine what these changes may mean for the rest of the planet. Coarse-scale satellite imagery of much of this region shows the tundra is becoming greener. This has been widely attributed to shrub...

  17. Strategic War Game - Arctic Response

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-11-01

    Arctic Game Theory Strategic Analysis War Game ... Strategic War Game – Arctic Response A. P. Billyard I. A. Collin H. A. Hrychuk Canadian Forces Aerospace Warfare Center Operational...Operational Research Strategic War Game – Arctic Response A. P. Billyard I. A. Collin H. A. Hrychuk Canadian Forces Aerospace

  18. Rural Alaska Coal Bed Methane: Application of New Technologies to Explore and Produce Energy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    David O. Ogbe; Shirish L. Patil; Doug Reynolds

    2005-06-30

    The Petroleum Development Laboratory, University of Alaska Fairbanks prepared this report. The US Department of Energy NETL sponsored this project through the Arctic Energy Technology Development Laboratory (AETDL) of the University of Alaska Fairbanks. The financial support of the AETDL is gratefully acknowledged. We also acknowledge the co-operation from the other investigators, including James G. Clough of the State of Alaska Department of Natural Resources, Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys; Art Clark, Charles Barker and Ed Weeks of the USGS; Beth Mclean and Robert Fisk of the Bureau of Land Management. James Ferguson and David Ogbe carried out the pre-drilling economic analysis, and Doug Reynolds conducted post drilling economic analysis. We also acknowledge the support received from Eric Opstad of Elko International, LLC; Anchorage, Alaska who provided a comprehensive AFE (Authorization for Expenditure) for pilot well drilling and completion at Fort Yukon. This report was prepared by David Ogbe, Shirish Patil, Doug Reynolds, and Santanu Khataniar of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, and James Clough of the Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Survey. The following research assistants, Kanhaiyalal Patel, Amy Rodman, and Michael Olaniran worked on this project.

  19. Arctic security and Norway

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tamnes, Rolf

    2013-03-01

    Global warming is one of the most serious threats facing mankind. Many regions and countries will be affected, and there will be many losers. The earliest and most intense climatic changes are being experienced in the Arctic region. Arctic average temperature has risen at twice the rate of the global average in the past half century. These changes provide an early indication for the world of the environmental and societal significance of global warming. For that reason, the Arctic presents itself as an important scientific laboratory for improving our understanding of the causes and patterns of climate changes. The rapidly rising temperature threatens the Arctic ecosystem, but the human consequences seem to be far less dramatic there than in many other places in the world. According to the U.S. National Intelligence Council, Russia has the potential to gain the most from increasingly temperate weather, because its petroleum reserves become more accessible and because the opening of an Arctic waterway could provide economic and commercial advantages. Norway might also be fortunate. Some years ago, the Financial Times asked: #Left Double Quotation Mark#What should Norway do about the fact that global warming will make their climate more hospitable and enhance their financial situation, even as it inflicts damage on other parts of the world?#Right Double Quotation Mark#(Author)

  20. The epidemiology of falling-through-the-ice in Alaska, 1990-2010.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fleischer, N L; Melstrom, P; Yard, E; Brubaker, M; Thomas, T

    2014-06-01

    Climate change has contributed to increasing temperatures, earlier snowmelts and thinning ice packs in the Arctic, where crossing frozen bodies of water is essential for transportation and subsistence living. In some Arctic communities, anecdotal reports indicate a growing belief that falling-through-the-ice (FTI) are increasing. The objective of this study was to describe the morbidity and mortality associated with unintentional FTIs in Alaska. We searched newspaper reports to identify FTI events from 1990 to 2010. We also used data from a trauma registry, occupational health and law enforcement registries and vital statistics to supplement the newspaper reports. Morbidity and mortality rates were calculated for Alaska Native (AN) people and all Alaskans. During the 21-year period, we identified 307 events, affecting at least 449 people. Events ranged from no morbidity to fatalities of five people. More than half of the events involved transportation by snow machine. Mortality rates were markedly higher for AN people than that for all Alaskans. We provide a numeric estimate of the importance of FTI events in Alaska. FTIs may represent an adverse health outcome related to climate changes in the Arctic, and may be particularly critical for vulnerable populations such as AN people. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Faculty of Public Health 2013. This work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.

  1. The Need and Opportunity for an Integrated Research, Development and Testing Station in the Alaskan High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hardesty, J. O.; Ivey, M.; Helsel, F.; Dexheimer, D.; Cahill, C. F.; Bendure, A.; Lucero, D. A.; Roesler, E. L.

    2016-12-01

    This presentation will make the case for development of a permanent integrated research and testing station at Oliktok Point, Alaska; taking advantage of existing assets and infrastructure, controlled airspace, an active UAS program and local partnerships. Arctic research stations provide critical monitoring and research on climate change for conditions and trends in the Arctic. The US Chair of the Arctic Council has increased awareness of gaps in our understanding of Artic systems, scarce monitoring, lack of infrastructure and readiness for emergency response. Less sea ice brings competition for commercial shipping and resource extraction. Search and rescue, pollution mitigation and safe navigation need real-time, wide-area monitoring to respond to events. Multi-national responses for international traffic will drive a greater security presence to protect citizens and sovereign interests. To address research and technology gaps, there is a national need for a High Arctic Station with an approach that partners stakeholders from science, safety and security to develop comprehensive solutions. The Station should offer year-round use, logistic support and access to varied ecological settings; phased adaptation to changing needs; and support testing of technologies such as multiple autonomous platforms, renewable energies and microgrids, and sensors in Arctic settings. We propose an Arctic Station at Oliktok Point, Alaska. Combined with the Toolik Field Station and Barrow Environmental Observatory, they form a US network of Arctic Stations. An Oliktok Point Station can provide complementary and unique assets that include: ocean access, and coastal and terrestrial systems; road access; controlled airspaces on land and ocean; nearby air facilities, medical and logistic support; atmospheric observations from an adjacent ARM facility; connections to Barrow and Toolik; fiber-optic communications; University of Alaska Fairbanks UAS Test Facility partnership; and an airstrip

  2. Significance of Northeast-Trending Features in Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutchinson, D. R.; Jackson, H. R.; Houseknecht, D. W.; Li, Q.; Shimeld, J. W.; Mosher, D. C.; Chian, D.; Saltus, R. W.; Oakey, G. N.

    2017-11-01

    Synthesis of seismic velocity, potential field, and geological data from Canada Basin and its surrounding continental margins suggests that a northeast-trending structural fabric has influenced the origin, evolution, and current tectonics of the basin. This structural fabric has a crustal origin, based on the persistence of these trends in upward continuation of total magnetic intensity data and vertical derivative analysis of free-air gravity data. Three subparallel northeast-trending features are described. Northwind Escarpment, bounding the east side of the Chukchi Borderland, extends ˜600 km and separates continental crust of Northwind Ridge from high-velocity transitional crust in Canada Basin. A second, shorter northeast-trending zone extends ˜300 km in northern Canada Basin and separates inferred continental crust of Sever Spur from magmatically intruded crust of the High Arctic Large Igneous Province. A third northeast-trending feature, here called the Alaska-Prince Patrick magnetic lineament (APPL) is inferred from magnetic data and its larger regional geologic setting. Analysis of these three features suggests strike slip or transtensional deformation played a role in the opening of Canada Basin. These features can be explained by initial Jurassic-Early Cretaceous strike slip deformation (phase 1) followed in the Early Cretaceous (˜134 to ˜124 Ma) by rotation of Arctic Alaska with seafloor spreading orthogonal to the fossil spreading axis preserved in the central Canada Basin (phase 2). In this model, the Chukchi Borderland is part of Arctic Alaska.

  3. Significance of northeast-trending features in Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutchinson, Deborah; Jackson, H.R.; Houseknecht, David W.; Li, Q.; Shimeld, J.W.; Mosher, D.C.; Chian, D.; Saltus, Richard; Oakey, G.N.

    2017-01-01

    Synthesis of seismic velocity, potential field, and geological data from Canada Basin and its surrounding continental margins suggests that a northeast-trending structural fabric has influenced the origin, evolution, and current tectonics of the basin. This structural fabric has a crustal origin, based on the persistence of these trends in upward continuation of total magnetic intensity data and vertical derivative analysis of free-air gravity data. Three subparallel northeast-trending features are described. Northwind Escarpment, bounding the east side of the Chukchi Borderland, extends ∼600 km and separates continental crust of Northwind Ridge from high-velocity transitional crust in Canada Basin. A second, shorter northeast-trending zone extends ∼300 km in northern Canada Basin and separates inferred continental crust of Sever Spur from magmatically intruded crust of the High Arctic Large Igneous Province. A third northeast-trending feature, here called the Alaska-Prince Patrick magnetic lineament (APPL) is inferred from magnetic data and its larger regional geologic setting. Analysis of these three features suggests strike slip or transtensional deformation played a role in the opening of Canada Basin. These features can be explained by initial Jurassic-Early Cretaceous strike slip deformation (phase 1) followed in the Early Cretaceous (∼134 to ∼124 Ma) by rotation of Arctic Alaska with seafloor spreading orthogonal to the fossil spreading axis preserved in the central Canada Basin (phase 2). In this model, the Chukchi Borderland is part of Arctic Alaska.

  4. Environmental recover in Prince William Sound and the Gulf of Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Clark, R.B.; Kingston, P.F.; Baker, J.M.

    1991-01-01

    This report is based on work commissioned by Exxon as part of a program of analyzing the ecosystem recovery process in Prince William Sound and the Gulf of Alaska following the oil spill of March 1989. Written by three distinguished scientists, it supplements a comprehensive study they and a fourth researcher prepared on the subject of Natural Recovery of Cold Water Marine Environments after an Oil Spill. This scientific review was presented at the 13th Arctic and Marine Oilspill Program Technical Seminar sponsored by the Canadian Government in Edmonton, Alberta, on June 6, 1990. As a followup to this study, the scientists spent two weeks in April 1990 gathering insight into the Prince William Sound and Gulf of Alaska environment as a whole and examining plant and animal life in the area. They compared their Alaska findings to their knowledge gained from studying the recovery process from other oil spills in cold waters of the world

  5. The Arctic Vegetation Type Change retrieved from Spaceborne Observations and its Influence on the Simulation of Permafrost Thawing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Y.; Wang, Z.

    2017-12-01

    The vegetation types change in Arctic has been studied using 10 years of MODIS land cover product (MCD12Q1). The shrub expansion is observed in Alaska and Northeast Asia, while shrub fraction decreases in North Canada and Southwest Arctic Eurasia. The total Arctic shrub fraction increases 3% in 10 years. The tundra decreases where the shrub expands, and thrives where the shrub retreats. In order to isolate the influence of the vegetation dynamic on the permafrost thawing, the Arctic terrestrial ecosystem in recent decades will be simulated using the Community Land Model (CLM) with and without the vegetation type changes. The energy and carbon exchange on the land surface will also be simulated and compared. Acknowledgement: This work was supported by the Korea Polar Research Institute (KOPRI, PN17081) and the Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) funded by the Ministry of Science, ICT & Future Planning (2015R1C1A2A01054800).

  6. Globalising the Arctic Climate:

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Corry, Olaf

    2017-01-01

    targets of political operations and contestations—are not simple ‘issues’ or ‘problems’ given to actors to deal with. Governance-objects emerge and are constructed through science, technology and politics, and rather than slotting neatly into existing structures, they have their own structuring effects...... on world politics. The emergence of the Arctic climate as a potential target of governance provides a case in point. The Arctic climate is becoming globalised, pushing it up the political agenda but drawing it away from its local and regional context....

  7. EPA Research in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    EPA’s collaboration with the DEC and the Air Force on PFAS sampling and analytical methods is key to ensuring valid, defensible data are collected on these emerging contaminants that are being found in soil, groundwater and drinking water in Alaska.

  8. Phytomass in southwest Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bert R. Mead

    2000-01-01

    Phytomass tables are presented for southwest Alaska. The methods used to estimate plant weight and occurrence in the river basin are described and discussed. Average weight is shown for each sampled species of tree, shrub, grass, forb, lichen, and moss in 19 forest and 48 nonforest vegetation types. Species frequency of occurrence and species constancy within the type...

  9. Current Ethnomusicology in Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnston, Thomas F.

    The systematic study of Eskimo, Indian, and Aleut musical sound and behavior in Alaska, though conceded to be an important part of white efforts to foster understanding between different cultural groups and to maintain the native cultural heritage, has received little attention from Alaskan educators. Most existing ethnomusical studies lack one or…

  10. Seismology Outreach in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardine, L.; Tape, C.; West, M. E.

    2014-12-01

    Despite residing in a state with 75% of North American earthquakes and three of the top 15 ever recorded, most Alaskans have limited knowledge about the science of earthquakes. To many, earthquakes are just part of everyday life, and to others, they are barely noticed until a large event happens, and often ignored even then. Alaskans are rugged, resilient people with both strong independence and tight community bonds. Rural villages in Alaska, most of which are inaccessible by road, are underrepresented in outreach efforts. Their remote locations and difficulty of access make outreach fiscally challenging. Teacher retention and small student bodies limit exposure to science and hinder student success in college. The arrival of EarthScope's Transportable Array, the 50th anniversary of the Great Alaska Earthquake, targeted projects with large outreach components, and increased community interest in earthquake knowledge have provided opportunities to spread information across Alaska. We have found that performing hands-on demonstrations, identifying seismological relevance toward career opportunities in Alaska (such as natural resource exploration), and engaging residents through place-based experience have increased the public's interest and awareness of our active home.

  11. Venetie, Alaska energy assessment.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jensen, Richard Pearson; Baca, Michael J.; Schenkman, Benjamin L.; Brainard, James Robert

    2013-07-01

    This report summarizes the Energy Assessment performed for Venetie, Alaska using the principals of an Energy Surety Microgrid (ESM) The report covers a brief overview of the principals of ESM, a site characterization of Venetie, a review of the consequence modeling, some preliminary recommendations, and a basic cost analysis.

  12. Differential ecophysiological response of deciduous shrubs and a graminoid to long-term experimental snow reductions and additions in moist acidic tundra, northern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert R. Pattison; Jeffrey M. Welker

    2014-01-01

    Changes in winter precipitation that include both decreases and increases in winter snow are underway across the Arctic. In this study, we used a 14-year experiment that has increased and decreased winter snow in the moist acidic tussock tundra of northern Alaska to understand impacts of variation in winter snow depth on summer leaf-level ecophysiology of two deciduous...

  13. Human-induced Arctic moistening.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Min, Seung-Ki; Zhang, Xuebin; Zwiers, Francis

    2008-04-25

    The Arctic and northern subpolar regions are critical for climate change. Ice-albedo feedback amplifies warming in the Arctic, and fluctuations of regional fresh water inflow to the Arctic Ocean modulate the deep ocean circulation and thus exert a strong global influence. By comparing observations to simulations from 22 coupled climate models, we find influence from anthropogenic greenhouse gases and sulfate aerosols in the space-time pattern of precipitation change over high-latitude land areas north of 55 degrees N during the second half of the 20th century. The human-induced Arctic moistening is consistent with observed increases in Arctic river discharge and freshening of Arctic water masses. This result provides new evidence that human activity has contributed to Arctic hydrological change.

  14. Arctic Terrestrial Biodiversity Monitoring Plan

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Tom; Payne, J.; Doyle, M.

    The Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF), the biodiversity working group of the Arctic Council, established the Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Program (CBMP) to address the need for coordinated and standardized monitoring of Arctic environments. The CBMP includes an international...... on developing and implementing long-term plans for monitoring the integrity of Arctic biomes: terrestrial, marine, freshwater, and coastal (under development) environments. The CBMP Terrestrial Expert Monitoring Group (CBMP-TEMG) has developed the Arctic Terrestrial Biodiversity Monitoring Plan (CBMP......-Terrestrial Plan/the Plan) as the framework for coordinated, long-term Arctic terrestrial biodiversity monitoring. The goal of the CBMP-Terrestrial Plan is to improve the collective ability of Arctic traditional knowledge (TK) holders, northern communities, and scientists to detect, understand and report on long...

  15. Luxury consumption of soil nutrients: a possible competitive strategy in above-ground and below-ground biomass allocation and root morphology for slow-growing arctic vegetation?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wijk, van M.T.; Williams, M.; Gough, L.; Hobbie, S.E.; Shaver, G.R.

    2003-01-01

    1 A field-experiment was used to determine how plant species might retain dominance in an arctic ecosystem receiving added nutrients. We both measured and modelled the above-ground and below-ground biomass allocation and root morphology of non-acidic tussock tundra near Toolik Lake, Alaska, after 4

  16. Mid-Pliocene warm-period deposits in the High Arctic yield insight into camel evolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rybczynski, Natalia; Gosse, John C; Harington, C Richard; Wogelius, Roy A; Hidy, Alan J; Buckley, Mike

    2013-01-01

    The mid-Pliocene was a global warm period, preceding the onset of Quaternary glaciations. Here we use cosmogenic nuclide dating to show that a fossiliferous terrestrial deposit that includes subfossil trees and the northern-most evidence of Pliocene ice wedge casts in Canada's High Arctic (Ellesmere Island, Nunavut) was deposited during the mid-Pliocene warm period. The age estimates correspond to a general maximum in high latitude mean winter season insolation, consistent with the presence of a rich, boreal-type forest. Moreover, we report that these deposits have yielded the first evidence of a High Arctic camel, identified using collagen fingerprinting of a fragmentary fossil limb bone. Camels originated in North America and dispersed to Eurasia via the Bering Isthmus, an ephemeral land bridge linking Alaska and Russia. The results suggest that the evolutionary history of modern camels can be traced back to a lineage of giant camels that was well established in a forested Arctic.

  17. How to Assess Trajectories of Arctic Ponds and Lakes: a Circum-Arctic Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muster, S.; Roth, K.; Cresto Aleina, F.; Langer, M.; Bartsch, A.; Morgenstern, A.; Grosse, G.; Lange, S.; Boike, J.

    2015-12-01

    Arctic ponds, i. e. water bodies with a surface area equal to or smaller than 10⁴ m² (1 ha), are currently not inventoried on a circum-arctic scale. However, they are a key element of the water, energy, and carbon balance and abundant in Arctic permafrost lowlands. Ponds and lakes have been subject to both wetting and drying in a warming climate yet studies remain ambivalent regarding the causes of these changes. Goals of this study are to (i) investigate the variability of water body size distributions as a function of landscape characteristics, and (ii) assess the vulnerability of water bodies in different landscapes to scenarios of wetting and drying. Ponds and lakes were mapped from high-resolution aerial and satellite imagery with resolutions of 4 m or better in 14 regions in Alaska, Canada, and Siberia covering a total area of ca. 1.6*104 km². Whereas lake distributions are similar, pond distributions in our study regions vary significantly with the area-normalized number of ponds differing up to 3 orders of magnitude. Landscape characteristics that may explain the current water body distributions include climate (eg., precipitation, evapotranspiration, temperature), permafrost (eg., ground ice content, maximum thaw depth) and terrain characteristics (eg., topography, glaciation, landscape age) which we derive from in situ, remote sensing and modeling data sources. Multivariate regression analysis are used to relate landscape characteristics to distribution parameters. This study for the first time allows to quantify the circum-arctic variability of pond distribution. The current maps are the start of a high-resolution circum-arctic water body inventory and present a baseline for future surface inundation mapping and modelling. We present representative regional probability density functions (pdf) and assess the potential to upscale pdfs using spatial landscape characteristics. We then discuss the vulnerability of water bodies to wetting or drying based

  18. Software defined multi-spectral imaging for Arctic sensor networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siewert, Sam; Angoth, Vivek; Krishnamurthy, Ramnarayan; Mani, Karthikeyan; Mock, Kenrick; Singh, Surjith B.; Srivistava, Saurav; Wagner, Chris; Claus, Ryan; Vis, Matthew Demi

    2016-05-01

    Availability of off-the-shelf infrared sensors combined with high definition visible cameras has made possible the construction of a Software Defined Multi-Spectral Imager (SDMSI) combining long-wave, near-infrared and visible imaging. The SDMSI requires a real-time embedded processor to fuse images and to create real-time depth maps for opportunistic uplink in sensor networks. Researchers at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University working with University of Alaska Anchorage at the Arctic Domain Awareness Center and the University of Colorado Boulder have built several versions of a low-cost drop-in-place SDMSI to test alternatives for power efficient image fusion. The SDMSI is intended for use in field applications including marine security, search and rescue operations and environmental surveys in the Arctic region. Based on Arctic marine sensor network mission goals, the team has designed the SDMSI to include features to rank images based on saliency and to provide on camera fusion and depth mapping. A major challenge has been the design of the camera computing system to operate within a 10 to 20 Watt power budget. This paper presents a power analysis of three options: 1) multi-core, 2) field programmable gate array with multi-core, and 3) graphics processing units with multi-core. For each test, power consumed for common fusion workloads has been measured at a range of frame rates and resolutions. Detailed analyses from our power efficiency comparison for workloads specific to stereo depth mapping and sensor fusion are summarized. Preliminary mission feasibility results from testing with off-the-shelf long-wave infrared and visible cameras in Alaska and Arizona are also summarized to demonstrate the value of the SDMSI for applications such as ice tracking, ocean color, soil moisture, animal and marine vessel detection and tracking. The goal is to select the most power efficient solution for the SDMSI for use on UAVs (Unoccupied Aerial Vehicles) and other drop

  19. An International Polar Year Adventure in the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wartes, D.

    2008-12-01

    RAHI, the Rural Alaska Honors Institute at the University of Alaska Fairbanks began in 1983 after a series of meetings between the Alaska Federation of Natives and the University of Alaska, to discuss the retention rates of Alaska Native and rural students. RAHI is a six-week college-preparatory summer bridge program on the University of Alaska Fairbanks campus for Alaska Native and rural high school juniors and seniors. The program's student body is approximately 94 percent Alaska Native. RAHI students take classes that earn them seven to ten college credits, thus giving them a head start on college. Courses include: writing, study skills, desk top publishing, Alaska Native dance or swimming, and a choice of biochemistry, math, business, or engineering. A program of rigorous academic activity combines with social, cultural, and recreational activities to make up the RAHI program of early preparation for college. Students are purposely stretched beyond their comfort levels academically and socially to prepare for the big step from home or village to a large culturally western urban campus. They are treated as honors students and are expected to meet all rigorous academic and social standards set by the program. All of this effort and activity support the principal goal of RAHI: promoting academic success for rural students in college. Over 26 years, 1,200 students have attended the program. Sixty percent of RAHI's alumni have entered four-year academic programs. Over 245 have earned a bachelor's degree, thirty-one have earned master's degrees, and seven have graduated with professional degrees (J.D., Pharm., or M.D.), along with 156 associate degrees and certificates. In looking at the RAHI cohort, removing those students who have not been in college long enough to obtain a degree, 27.3 percent of RAHI alums have received a bachelor's degree. An April 2006 report by the American Institutes for Research through the National Science Foundation found that: Rural

  20. The changing Arctic carbon cycle: using the past to understand terrestrial-aquatic linkages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, N. J.; van Hardenbroek, M.; Jones, V.; McGowan, S.; Langdon, P. G.; Whiteford, E.; Turner, S.; Edwards, M. E.

    2016-12-01

    Predicted shifts in terrestrial vegetation cover associated with Arctic warming are altering the delivery and processing of carbon to aquatic ecosystems. This process could determine whether lakes are net carbon sources or sinks and, because lake density is high in many Arctic areas, may alter regional carbon budgets. Lake sediment records integrate information from within the lake and its catchment and can be used quantify past vegetation shifts associated with known climatic episodes of warmer (Holocene Thermal Maximum) and cooler (Neoglacial) conditions. We analysed sediment cores located in different Arctic vegetation biomes (tundra, shrub, forested) in Greenland, Norway and Alaska and used biochemical (algal pigments, stable isotopes) remains to evaluate whether past vegetation shifts were associated with changes in ecosystem carbon processing and biodiversity. When lake catchments were sparsely vegetated and soil vegetation was limited ultra-violet radiation (UVR) screening pigments indicate clear lake waters, scarce dissolved organic carbon/ matter (DOC/M). Moderate vegetation development (birch scrub in Norway; herb tundra in Greenland) appears to enhance delivery of DOM to lakes, and to stimulate algal production which is apparently linked to heterotrophic carbon processing pathways (e.g. algal mixotrophy, nutrient release via the microbial loop). Mature forest cover (in Alaska and Norway) supressed lake autotrophic production, most likely because coloured DOM delivered from catchment vegetation limited light availability. During wetter periods when mires developed lake carbon processing also changed, indicating that hydrological delivery of terrestrial DOM is also important. Therefore, future changes in Arctic vegetation and precipitation patterns are highly likely to alter the way that arctic ecosystems process carbon. Our approach provides an understanding of how ecosystem diversity and carbon processing respond to past climate change and the difficulty

  1. On the climate and climate change of Sitka, Southeast Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wendler, Gerd; Galloway, Kevin; Stuefer, Martin

    2016-10-01

    observed warming is less pronounced than the values found for Interior and especially Arctic Alaska for later time period for which such a comparison was possible (Wendler et al. 2014). Significant correlation values were found with the Pacific Decadal Oscillation (PDO), the North Pacific (NP) Index, El Nino 3.4, and the 18.4 years nodal tide; the latter was previously reported in an excellent investigation by T. Royer (1993).

  2. Arctic Islands LNG

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hindle, W.

    1977-01-01

    Trans-Canada Pipe Lines Ltd. made a feasibility study of transporting LNG from the High Arctic Islands to a St. Lawrence River Terminal by means of a specially designed and built 125,000 cu m or 165,000 cu m icebreaking LNG tanker. Studies were made of the climatology and of ice conditions, using available statistical data as well as direct surveys in 1974, 1975, and 1976. For on-schedule and unimpeded (unescorted) passage of the LNG carriers at all times of the year, special navigation and communications systems can be made available. Available icebreaking experience, charting for the proposed tanker routes, and tide tables for the Canadian Arctic were surveyed. Preliminary design of a proposed Arctic LNG icebreaker tanker, including containment system, reliquefaction of boiloff, speed, power, number of trips for 345 day/yr operation, and liquefaction and regasification facilities are discussed. The use of a minimum of three Arctic Class 10 ships would enable delivery of volumes of natural gas averaging 11.3 million cu m/day over a period of a year to Canadian markets. The concept appears to be technically feasible with existing basic technology.

  3. Arctic Craft Demonstration Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-11-01

    21 Figure 15. Crowley ACV on a beach in Gwydyr Bay. .................................................................................. 22...Figure 16. Quonset hut structure allows year round operations for ACV . .................................................... 22 Figure 17. Dalton...met with Crowley Maritime Services which operates the Arctic Hawk Air Cushion Vehicle ( ACV ). This vessel is used to provide logistical support to

  4. Arctic offshore engineering

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Palmer, Andrew; Croasdale, Ken

    2013-01-01

    ... so safely, economically and with minimal risk to the environment. Singapore may at first seem a surprising place to be writing such a book, but in fact we have a significant and growing interest in the Arctic, from several directions, among them shipping and petroleum production. At Keppel we are already active in more than one of those fields, and have a ...

  5. Arctic avalanche dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prokop, Alexander; Eiken, Mari; Ganaus, Kerstin; Rubensdotter, Lena

    2017-04-01

    Since the avalanche disaster December 19th, 2015 in Longyearbyen (Svalbard) happened, where two people were killed within settlements, the dynamic of avalanches in arctic regions is of increasing interest for hazard mapping in such areas. To investigate the flow behavior of arctic avalanches we focused on avalanches that occurred in Central Svalbard. In this regions historic avalanche events can be analyzed due to their deposition behavior visible on geomorphological maps in the run-out area of the avalanches. To get an idea about possible snow mass that was involved in the avalanches we measured the snow volume balance of recent avalanches (winters 2015/16) via terrestrial laser scanning. In this way we gained reasonable data to set calibration and input parameters for dynamic avalanche modeling. Using state of the art dynamic avalanche models allowed us to back calculate how much snow was involved in the historic avalanches that we identified on the geomorphological maps and what the return period of those events are. In our presentation we first explain our methodology; we discuss arctic avalanche behavior of the avalanches measured via terrestrial laser scanning and how the dynamic avalanche models performed for those case examples. Finally we conclude how our results can improve avalanche hazard mapping for arctic regions.

  6. Cretaceous Arctic magmatism: Slab vs. plume? Or slab and plume?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gottlieb, E. S.; Miller, E. L.; Andronikov, A. V.; Brumley, K.; Mayer, L. A.; Mukasa, S. B.

    2010-12-01

    Tectonic models for the Cretaceous paleogeographic evolution of the Arctic Ocean and its adjacent landmasses propose that rifting in the Amerasia Basin (AB) began in Jura-Cretaceous time, accompanied by the development of the High Arctic Large Igneous Province (HALIP). During the same timespan, deformation and slab-related magmatism, followed by intra-arc rifting, took place along the Pacific side of what was to become the Arctic Ocean. A compilation and comparison of the ages, characteristics and space-time variation of circum-Arctic magmatism allows for a better understanding of the role of Pacific margin versus Arctic-Atlantic plate tectonics and the role of plume-related magmatism in the origin of the Arctic Ocean. In Jura-Cretaceous time, an arc built upon older terranes overthrust the Arctic continental margins of North America and Eurasia, shedding debris into foreland basins in the Brooks Range, Alaska, across Chukotka, Russia, to the Lena Delta and New Siberian Islands region of the Russian Arctic. These syn-tectonic sediments have some common sources (e.g., ~250-300 Ma magmatic rocks) as determined by U-Pb detrital zircon geochronology. They are as young as Valanginian-Berriasian (~136 Ma, Gradstein et al., 2004) and place a lower limit on the age of formation of the AB. Subsequent intrusions of granitoid plutons, inferred to be ultimately slab-retreat related, form a belt along the far eastern Russian Arctic continental margin onto Seward Peninsula and have yielded a continuous succession of zircon U-Pb ages from ~137-95 Ma (n=28) and a younger suite ~91-82 Ma (n=16). All plutons dated were intruded in an extensional tectonic setting based on their relations to wall-rock deformation. Regional distribution of ages shows a southward migration of the locus of magmatism during Cretaceous time. Basaltic lavas as old as 130 Ma and as young as 80 Ma (40Ar/39Ar)) erupted across the Canadian Arctic Islands, Svalbard and Franz Josef Land and are associated with

  7. The Arctic Circle

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald, Siobhan

    2016-04-01

    My name is Siobhan McDonald. I am a visual artist living and working in Dublin. My studio is based in The School of Science at University College Dublin where I was Artist in Residence 2013-2015. A fascination with time and the changeable nature of landmass has led to ongoing conversations with scientists and research institutions across the interweaving disciplines of botany, biology and geology. I am developing a body of work following a recent research trip to the North Pole where I studied the disappearing landscape of the Arctic. Prompted by my experience of the Arctic shelf receding, this new work addresses issues of the instability of the earth's materiality. The work is grounded in an investigation of material processes, exploring the dynamic forces that transform matter and energy. This project combines art and science in a fascinating exploration of one of the Earth's last relatively untouched wilderness areas - the High Arctic to bring audiences on journeys to both real and artistically re-imagined Arctic spaces. CRYSTALLINE'S pivotal process is collaboration: with The European Space Agency; curator Helen Carey; palaeontologist Prof. Jenny McElwain, UCD; and with composer Irene Buckley. CRYSTALLINE explores our desire to make corporeal contact with geological phenomena in Polar Regions. From January 2016, in my collaboration with Jenny McElwain, I will focus on the study of plants and atmospheres from the Arctic regions as far back as 400 million years ago, to explore the essential 'nature' that, invisible to the eye, acts as imaginary portholes into other times. This work will be informed by my arctic tracings of sounds and images recorded in the glaciers of this disappearing frozen landscape. In doing so, the urgencies around the tipping of natural balances in this fragile region will be revealed. The final work will emerge from my forthcoming residency at the ESA in spring 2016. Here I will conduct a series of workshops in ESA Madrid to work with

  8. Tsunami in the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kulikov, Evgueni; Medvedev, Igor; Ivaschenko, Alexey

    2017-04-01

    The severity of the climate and sparsely populated coastal regions are the reason why the Russian part of the Arctic Ocean belongs to the least studied areas of the World Ocean. In the same time intensive economic development of the Arctic region, specifically oil and gas industry, require studies of potential thread natural disasters that can cause environmental and technical damage of the coastal and maritime infrastructure of energy industry complex (FEC). Despite the fact that the seismic activity in the Arctic can be attributed to a moderate level, we cannot exclude the occurrence of destructive tsunami waves, directly threatening the FEC. According to the IAEA requirements, in the construction of nuclear power plants it is necessary to take into account the impact of all natural disasters with frequency more than 10-5 per year. Planned accommodation in the polar regions of the Russian floating nuclear power plants certainly requires an adequate risk assessment of the tsunami hazard in the areas of their location. Develop the concept of tsunami hazard assessment would be based on the numerical simulation of different scenarios in which reproduced the hypothetical seismic sources and generated tsunamis. The analysis of available geological, geophysical and seismological data for the period of instrumental observations (1918-2015) shows that the highest earthquake potential within the Arctic region is associated with the underwater Mid-Arctic zone of ocean bottom spreading (interplate boundary between Eurasia and North American plates) as well as with some areas of continental slope within the marginal seas. For the Arctic coast of Russia and the adjacent shelf area, the greatest tsunami danger of seismotectonic origin comes from the earthquakes occurring in the underwater Gakkel Ridge zone, the north-eastern part of the Mid-Arctic zone. In this area, one may expect earthquakes of magnitude Mw ˜ 6.5-7.0 at a rate of 10-2 per year and of magnitude Mw ˜ 7.5 at a

  9. Icy inferno: Researchers plan oil blaze in Arctic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stone, R.

    1991-01-01

    In the summer of 1992, industry researchers hope to spill and set ablaze tens of thousands of gallons of crude oil in the ice-choked waters of the Beaufort Sea off Alaska's northern coast. The researchers want to determine how well federal or industrial emergency response teams can deal with a future accidental oil spill in Arctic waters and learn whether fire can serve as an effective cleanup tool. First, however, they must convince federal and state regulators to sanction the test, and that's proving difficult. One reason for concern is that the standard approach to oil cleanup may not work in this area. Special hazards - the rough weather that often batters the Beaufort Sea, the darkness that envelops the area during most of the winter, and the ice - make it virtually impossible to deploy booms and collectors of the kind used for spills in warmer waters. The planned spill in the Beaufort Sea is an attempt to test alternative cleanup technologies. It is being sponsored by Alaska Clean Seas (ACS), a nonprofit organization composed of the major oil and gas companies operating in Alaska

  10. Optimizing Communications Between Arctic Residents and IPY Scientific Researchers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stapleton, M.; Carpenter, L.

    2007-12-01

    BACKGROUND International Polar Year, which was launched in March 2007, is an international program of coordinated, interdisciplinary scientific research on Earth's polar regions. The northern regions of the eight Arctic States (Canada, Alaska (USA), Russia, Sweden, Norway, Finland. Iceland and Greenland (Denmark) have significant indigenous populations. The circumpolar Arctic is one of the least technologically connected regions in the world, although Canada and others have been pioneers in developing and suing Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in remote areas. The people living in this vast geographic area have been moving toward taking their rightful place in the global information society, but are dependent on the outreach and cooperation of larger mainstream societies. The dominant medium of communication is radio, which is flexible in accommodating multiple cultures, languages, and factors of time and distance. The addition of newer technologies such as streaming on the Internet can increase access and content for all communities of interest, north and south. The Arctic Circle of Indigenous Communicators (ACIC) is an independent association of professional Northern indigenous media workers in the print, radio, television, film and Internet industries. ACIC advocates the development of all forms of communication in circumpolar North areas. It is international in scope. Members are literate in English, French, Russian and many indigenous languages. ACIC has proposed the establishment of a headquarters for monitoring IPY projects are in each area, and the use of community radio broadcasters to collect and disseminate information about IPY. The cooperation of Team IPY at the University of Colorado, Arctic Net at Laval University, and others, is being developed. ACIC is committed to making scientific knowledge gained in IPY accessible to those most affected - residents of the Arctic. ABSTRACT The meeting of the American Geophysical Union will be held

  11. Advanced Life Systems for Extreme Environments: An Arctic Application

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lewis, Carol E.; Stanford, Kerry L.; Bubenheim, David L.; Covington, Alan (Technical Monitor)

    1995-01-01

    The problems of obtaining adequate pure drinking water and disposing of liquid and solid waste in the U.S. Arctic, a region where virtually all water is frozen solid for much of the year, has led to unsanitary solutions (U.S. Arctic Research Commission). These solutions are also damaging to the environment. Sanitation and a safe water supply are particularly problems in rural villages. About one-fourth of Alaska's 86.000 Native residents live in these communities. They are without running water and use plastic buckets for toilets. The outbreak of diseases is believed to be partially attributable to exposure to human waste. Villages with the most frequent outbreaks of disease are those in which running water is difficult to obtain (Office of Technology Assessment, 1994). Waste is emptied into open lagoons, rivers, or onto the sea coast. It does not degrade rapidly and in addition to affecting human health, can be harmful to the fragile ecology of the Arctic and the indigenous wildlife and fish populations. Advanced Life Systems for Extreme Environments (ALSEE) provides a solution to sanitation and safe water problems. The system uses an advanced integrated technology developed for Antarctic and space applications. ALSEE uses the systems approach to address more than waste and water problems. By incorporating hydroponic horticulture and aquaculture into the waste treatment system, ALSEE addresses the quality and quantity of fresh foods available to Arctic residents. A temperate climate is required for year-round plant growth. ALSEE facilities can be designed to include a climate controlled area within the structure. This type of environment is a change from the long periods of darkness and cold found in the Arctic and can help alleviate stress so often associated with these extremes. While the overall concept of ALSEE projects is advanced, system facilities can be operated by village residents with appropriate training. ALSEE provides continuing training and

  12. Manifestation of Aerosol Indirect Effects in Arctic Clouds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lubin, D.; Vogelmann, A. M.

    2009-12-01

    The first aerosol indirect effect has traditionally been conceived as an enhancement of shortwave cloud reflectance in response to decreased effective droplet size at fixed liquid water path, as cloud nucleating aerosol becomes entrained in the cloud. The high Arctic, with its pervasive low-level stratiform cloud cover and frequent episodes of anthropogenic aerosol (Artic "haze"), has in recent years served as a natural laboratory for research on actual manifestations of aerosol indirect effects. This paper will review the surprising set of developments: (1) the detection of the indirect effect as a source of surface warming, rather than cooling, throughout early spring, (2) a transition to a cooling effect in late spring, corresponding to the beginning of the sea ice melt season, and (3) detection of an indirect effect during summer, outside of the "Arctic haze" season. This paper will also discuss measurements of spectral shortwave irradiance (350-2200 nm) made at Barrow, Alaska, during the U.S. Department of Energy's Indirect and Semi-Direct Aerosol Campaign (ISDAC), which reveal complications in our conception of the indirect effect related to the ice phase in Arctic stratiform clouds.

  13. The polar year starts in March. Arctics promises. When the North path will be opened to maritime traffic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lepetit, V.; Remoue, A.

    2007-01-01

    From Greenland to Alaska and from the Barents sea to the Okhotsk sea, oil companies are performing exploratory drillings looking for the North pole black gold. Far away from being an utopia, this new conquest of the great north is organizing yet. The Arctic hydrocarbon reserves may represent 10% of the world reserves. Moreover, with the increasing melting of ice sheets, the Arctic path will be opened to navigation and exploration in less than 25 years. The great north territories are shared between eight countries (USA, Canada, Denmark, Island, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia) and leads to disputes about the limits of territorial waters. (J.S.)

  14. Alaska's nest egg

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Stauffer, Thomas.

    1997-01-01

    Twenty years ago, the Alaska Permanent Fund was established to receive a substantial share of the state's oil receipts and to invest these monies each year. Four key aspects are unique to Alaska's providential fund among oil-producing states. Firstly a constitutional amendment is needed to touch the assets so the capital is safe from encroachment by the government. Secondly, each Alaskan gets a detailed breakdown of what is invested and what is earned. In the third place, and most importantly, each Alaskan receives an annual dividend from the Fund. Fourthly, the funds have been prudently invested almost entirely outside Alaska rather than in unremunerative vanity infrastructure projects. Now, however, oil production is falling and revenues per barrel from new fields with higher costs are projected to decline as well. Given the budget shortfall, there is now a debate about whether the dividends paid directly to the people, should be shifted, at least in part to the state budget. Although the Fund's capital cannot be touched by the government, the Legislature does have the right to dispose of the income. The arguments in this debate over policy and political philosophy are examined. (UK)

  15. Geologic studies in Alaska by the U.S. Geological Survey, 1992

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dusel-Bacon, Cynthia; Till, Alison B.

    1993-01-01

    This collection of 19 papers continues the annual series of U.S. Geological Survey reports on the geology of Alaska. The contributions, which include full-length Articles and shorter Geologic Notes, cover a broad range of topics including dune formation, stratigraphy, paleontology, isotopic dating, mineral resources, and tectonics. Articles, grouped under four regional headings, span nearly the entire State from the North Slope to southwestern, south-central, and southeastern Alaska (fig. 1).In the section on northern Alaska, Galloway and Carter use new data on dune morphology and radiocarbon ages from the western Arctic Coastal Plain to develop a late Holocene chronology of multiple episodes of dune stabilization and reactivation for the region. Their study has important implications for climatic changes in northern Alaska during the past 4,000 years. In two papers, Dumoulin and her coauthors describe lithofacies and conodont faunas of Carboniferous strata in the western Brooks Range, discuss depositional environments, and propose possible correlations and source areas for some of the strata. Schenk and Bird propose a preliminary division of the Lower Cretaceous stratigraphic section in the central part of the North Slope into depositional sequences. Aleinikoff and others present new U-Pb data for zircons from metaigneous rocks from the central Brooks Range. Karl and Mull, reacting to a proposal regarding terrane nomenclature for northern Alaska that was published in last year's Alaskan Studies Bulletin, provide a historical perspective of the evolution of terminology for tectonic units in the Brooks Range and present their own recommendations.

  16. Japan’s arctic policy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dmitry V. Streltsov

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract: The article is devoted to the public policy of modern Japan in the Arctic. The Japanese government has put forward clear and well-specifi ed targets of the intensifi cation of Japan’s efforts in the economic development of the Arctic region. Among the priorities of the Arctic policy one should mention such areas as the development of maritime transportation, development of hydrocarbon deposits of the Arctic shelf, sea fi shing, as well as the preservation and increase of the sea bioresources.

  17. Disparities in Arctic Health

    Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Podcasts

    2008-02-04

    Life at the top of the globe is drastically different. Harsh climate devoid of sunlight part of the year, pockets of extreme poverty, and lack of physical infrastructure interfere with healthcare and public health services. Learn about the challenges of people in the Arctic and how research and the International Polar Year address them.  Created: 2/4/2008 by Emerging Infectious Diseases.   Date Released: 2/20/2008.

  18. The Value-for-Money Discourse: Risks and Opportunities for R4D

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    shanks@idrc.ca

    fiscal accountability, return on investment. (RoI), quantifiable targets, and indicators of impact. These macro-level trends have contributed to the emergence of ... accountability to those providing their revenue. − ultimately the tax payers. According to the OECD (2012 p.1), “A number of aid sceptics have claimed that aid does ...

  19. Spatio-temporal Analysis of the Genetic Diversity of Arctic Rabies Viruses and Their Reservoir Hosts in Greenland.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dennis Hanke

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available There has been limited knowledge on spatio-temporal epidemiology of zoonotic arctic fox rabies among countries bordering the Arctic, in particular Greenland. Previous molecular epidemiological studies have suggested the occurrence of one particular arctic rabies virus (RABV lineage (arctic-3, but have been limited by a low number of available samples preventing in-depth high resolution phylogenetic analysis of RABVs at that time. However, an improved knowledge of the evolution, at a molecular level, of the circulating RABVs and a better understanding of the historical perspective of the disease in Greenland is necessary for better direct control measures on the island. These issues have been addressed by investigating the spatio-temporal genetic diversity of arctic RABVs and their reservoir host, the arctic fox, in Greenland using both full and partial genome sequences. Using a unique set of 79 arctic RABV full genome sequences from Greenland, Canada, USA (Alaska and Russia obtained between 1977 and 2014, a description of the historic context in relation to the genetic diversity of currently circulating RABV in Greenland and neighboring Canadian Northern territories has been provided. The phylogenetic analysis confirmed delineation into four major arctic RABV lineages (arctic 1-4 with viruses from Greenland exclusively grouping into the circumpolar arctic-3 lineage. High resolution analysis enabled distinction of seven geographically distinct subclades (3.I - 3.VII with two subclades containing viruses from both Greenland and Canada. By combining analysis of full length RABV genome sequences and host derived sequences encoding mitochondrial proteins obtained simultaneously from brain tissues of 49 arctic foxes, the interaction of viruses and their hosts was explored in detail. Such an approach can serve as a blueprint for analysis of infectious disease dynamics and virus-host interdependencies. The results showed a fine-scale spatial population

  20. Numerical modeling of permafrost dynamics in Alaska using a high spatial resolution dataset

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. E. Jafarov

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Climate projections for the 21st century indicate that there could be a pronounced warming and permafrost degradation in the Arctic and sub-Arctic regions. Climate warming is likely to cause permafrost thawing with subsequent effects on surface albedo, hydrology, soil organic matter storage and greenhouse gas emissions.

    To assess possible changes in the permafrost thermal state and active layer thickness, we implemented the GIPL2-MPI transient numerical model for the entire Alaska permafrost domain. The model input parameters are spatial datasets of mean monthly air temperature and precipitation, prescribed thermal properties of the multilayered soil column, and water content that are specific for each soil class and geographical location. As a climate forcing, we used the composite of five IPCC Global Circulation Models that has been downscaled to 2 by 2 km spatial resolution by Scenarios Network for Alaska Planning (SNAP group.

    In this paper, we present the modeling results based on input of a five-model composite with A1B carbon emission scenario. The model has been calibrated according to the annual borehole temperature measurements for the State of Alaska. We also performed more detailed calibration for fifteen shallow borehole stations where high quality data are available on daily basis. To validate the model performance, we compared simulated active layer thicknesses with observed data from Circumpolar Active Layer Monitoring (CALM stations. The calibrated model was used to address possible ground temperature changes for the 21st century. The model simulation results show widespread permafrost degradation in Alaska could begin between 2040–2099 within the vast area southward from the Brooks Range, except for the high altitude regions of the Alaska Range and Wrangell Mountains.

  1. Concept Study: Exploration and Production in Environmentally Sensitive Arctic Areas

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shirish Patil; Rich Haut; Tom Williams; Yuri Shur; Mikhail Kanevskiy; Cathy Hanks; Michael Lilly

    2008-12-31

    The Alaska North Slope offers one of the best prospects for increasing U.S. domestic oil and gas production. However, this region faces some of the greatest environmental and logistical challenges to oil and gas production in the world. A number of studies have shown that weather patterns in this region are warming, and the number of days the tundra surface is adequately frozen for tundra travel each year has declined. Operators are not allowed to explore in undeveloped areas until the tundra is sufficiently frozen and adequate snow cover is present. Spring breakup then forces rapid evacuation of the area prior to snowmelt. Using the best available methods, exploration in remote arctic areas can take up to three years to identify a commercial discovery, and then years to build the infrastructure to develop and produce. This makes new exploration costly. It also increases the costs of maintaining field infrastructure, pipeline inspections, and environmental restoration efforts. New technologies are needed, or oil and gas resources may never be developed outside limited exploration stepouts from existing infrastructure. Industry has identified certain low-impact technologies suitable for operations, and has made improvements to reduce the footprint and impact on the environment. Additional improvements are needed for exploration and economic field development and end-of-field restoration. One operator-Anadarko Petroleum Corporation-built a prototype platform for drilling wells in the Arctic that is elevated, modular, and mobile. The system was tested while drilling one of the first hydrate exploration wells in Alaska during 2003-2004. This technology was identified as a potentially enabling technology by the ongoing Joint Industry Program (JIP) Environmentally Friendly Drilling (EFD) program. The EFD is headed by Texas A&M University and the Houston Advanced Research Center (HARC), and is co-funded by the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL). The EFD

  2. Tectonochemistry of the Brooks Range Ophiolite, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biasi, J.; Asimow, P. D.; Harris, R. A.

    2017-12-01

    The Brooks Range Ophiolite (BRO), recently estimated to be 1800km2 in area, is the largest ophiolite in the Western Hemisphere. However, due to its remote location, it remains one of the least studied. Mineral exploration and reconnaissance-level mapping of the ophiolite were done in the 1970s and 1980s. Some chemical analyses were also performed, but since that time the BRO has received little attention. Over the subsequent 25+ years, the study of ophiolites has advanced greatly. These early studies found that the BRO lies in the structurally highest position in the Brooks Range, and its obduction probably coincided with the collision between the Koyukuk Arc and the Arctic-Alaska continental margin. It is therefore important to determine the tectonic setting in which the BRO formed if one wants to understand the tectonic history of the Northern Cordillera during the Jurassic/Cretaceous. Here we present new tectonochemistry data from the BRO. This includes whole-rock data (via XRF), trace element data (via XRF and ICP-MS), and mineral chemistries (via Electron Microprobe). Using immobile element fingerprinting, we constrain the tectonic setting in which the BRO formed and how this information ties in with other events in the Northern Cordillera's history. The fingerprinting results are supplemented by Cr-in-spinel data and Al-in-olivine thermometry.

  3. Chemical composition of arctic snow: concentration levels and regional distribution of major elements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Caritat, Patrice; Hall, Gwendy; Gìslason, Sigurdur; Belsey, William; Braun, Marlene; Goloubeva, Natalia I; Olsen, Hans Kristian; Scheie, Jon Ove; Vaive, Judy E

    2005-01-05

    At the end of the northern winter 1996/1997, 21 snow samples were collected from 17 arctic localities in Norway, Sweden, Finland, Svalbard, Russia, Alaska, Canada, Greenland and Iceland. Major element concentrations of the filtered (0.45 mum) melted snow indicate that most samples are consistent with a diluted seawater composition. Deviations from this behaviour indicate additional SO(4)(2-) and Cl(-) relative to seawater, suggesting a minor contribution from (probably local) coal combustion emissions (Alaska, Finland, Sweden, Svalbard). The samples with the highest Na and Cl(-) content (Canada, Russia) also have higher Na/SO(4)(2-) and Cl(-)/SO(4)(2-) ratios than seawater, suggesting a slight contamination from (probably local) deicing activities. Local soil or rock dust inputs in the snow are indicated by 'excess' Ca contents (Alaska, Svalbard, Greenland, Sweden). No overall relationship was found between pH (range: 4.6-6.1) and total or non-seasalt SO(4)(2-) (NSS), suggesting that acidification due to long-range transport of SO(2) pollution is not operating on an arctic-wide scale. In a few samples (Alaska, Finland, Sweden, Svalbard), a significant proportion (>50%) of SO(4)(2-) is non-marine in origin. Sources for this non-marine SO(4)(2-) need not all be found in long-range atmospheric transport and more likely sources are local industry (Finland, Sweden), road traffic (Alaska) or minor snow-scooting traffic (one Svalbard locality). A few samples from northern Europe show a relatively weak trend of decreasing pH with increasing NO(3)(-).

  4. Carbon loss from an unprecedented Arctic tundra wildfire.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mack, Michelle C; Bret-Harte, M Syndonia; Hollingsworth, Teresa N; Jandt, Randi R; Schuur, Edward A G; Shaver, Gaius R; Verbyla, David L

    2011-07-27

    Arctic tundra soils store large amounts of carbon (C) in organic soil layers hundreds to thousands of years old that insulate, and in some cases maintain, permafrost soils. Fire has been largely absent from most of this biome since the early Holocene epoch, but its frequency and extent are increasing, probably in response to climate warming. The effect of fires on the C balance of tundra landscapes, however, remains largely unknown. The Anaktuvuk River fire in 2007 burned 1,039 square kilometres of Alaska's Arctic slope, making it the largest fire on record for the tundra biome and doubling the cumulative area burned since 1950 (ref. 5). Here we report that tundra ecosystems lost 2,016 ± 435 g C m(-2) in the fire, an amount two orders of magnitude larger than annual net C exchange in undisturbed tundra. Sixty per cent of this C loss was from soil organic matter, and radiocarbon dating of residual soil layers revealed that the maximum age of soil C lost was 50 years. Scaled to the entire burned area, the fire released approximately 2.1 teragrams of C to the atmosphere, an amount similar in magnitude to the annual net C sink for the entire Arctic tundra biome averaged over the last quarter of the twentieth century. The magnitude of ecosystem C lost by fire, relative to both ecosystem and biome-scale fluxes, demonstrates that a climate-driven increase in tundra fire disturbance may represent a positive feedback, potentially offsetting Arctic greening and influencing the net C balance of the tundra biome.

  5. Carbon loss from an unprecedented Arctic tundra wildfire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mack, Michelle C.; Bret-Harte, M. Syndonia; Hollingsworth, Teresa N.; Jandt, Randi R.; Schuur, Edward A. G.; Shaver, Gaius R.; Verbyla, David L.

    2011-07-01

    Arctic tundra soils store large amounts of carbon (C) in organic soil layers hundreds to thousands of years old that insulate, and in some cases maintain, permafrost soils. Fire has been largely absent from most of this biome since the early Holocene epoch, but its frequency and extent are increasing, probably in response to climate warming. The effect of fires on the C balance of tundra landscapes, however, remains largely unknown. The Anaktuvuk River fire in 2007 burned 1,039 square kilometres of Alaska's Arctic slope, making it the largest fire on record for the tundra biome and doubling the cumulative area burned since 1950 (ref. 5). Here we report that tundra ecosystems lost 2,016+/-435gCm-2 in the fire, an amount two orders of magnitude larger than annual net C exchange in undisturbed tundra. Sixty per cent of this C loss was from soil organic matter, and radiocarbon dating of residual soil layers revealed that the maximum age of soil C lost was 50 years. Scaled to the entire burned area, the fire released approximately 2.1teragrams of C to the atmosphere, an amount similar in magnitude to the annual net C sink for the entire Arctic tundra biome averaged over the last quarter of the twentieth century. The magnitude of ecosystem C lost by fire, relative to both ecosystem and biome-scale fluxes, demonstrates that a climate-driven increase in tundra fire disturbance may represent a positive feedback, potentially offsetting Arctic greening and influencing the net C balance of the tundra biome.

  6. Mining in the European Arctic

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Dam, Kim; Scheepstra, Annette; Gille, Johan; Stępień, Adam; Koivurova, Timo

    The European Arctic is currently experiencing an upsurge in mining activities, but future developments will be highly sensitive to mineral price fluctuations. The EU is a major consumer and importer of Arctic raw materials. As the EU is concerned about the security of supply, it encourages domestic

  7. Biodiversity of arctic marine fishes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mecklenburg, Catherine W.; Møller, Peter Rask; Steinke, Dirk

    2011-01-01

    Taxonomic and distributional information on each fish species found in arctic marine waters is reviewed, and a list of families and species with commentary on distributional records is presented. The list incorporates results from examination of museum collections of arctic marine fishes dating b...

  8. Scientific Drilling in the Arctic Ocean: A challenge for the next decades

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, R.; Coakley, B.

    2009-04-01

    Although major progress in Arctic Ocean research has been made during the last decades, the knowledge of its short- and long-term paleoceanographic and paleoclimatic history as well as its plate-tectonic evolution is much behind that from the other world's oceans. That means - despite the importance of the Arctic in the climate system - the data base we have from this area is still very weak, and large parts of the climate history have not been recovered at all in sedimentary sections. This lack of knowledge is mainly caused by the major technological/ logistic problems in reaching this permanently ice-covered region with normal research vessels and in retrieving long and undisturbed sediment cores. With the successful completion of IODP Expedition 302 ("Arctic Coring Expedition" - ACEX), the first Mission Specific Platform (MSP) expedition within the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program - IODP, a new era in Arctic research has begun. For the first time, a scientific drilling in the permanently ice-covered Arctic Ocean was carried out, penetrating about 430 meters of Quaternary, Neogene, Paleogene and Campanian sediment on the crest of Lomonosov Ridge close to the North Pole. The success of ACEX has certainly opened the door for further scientific drilling in the Arctic Ocean, and will frame the next round of questions to be answered from new drill holes to be taken during the next decades. In order to discuss and plan the future of scientific drilling in the Arctic Ocean, an international workshop was held at the Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI) in Bremerhaven/Germany, (Nov 03-05, 2008; convenors: Bernard Coakley/University of Alaska Fairbanks and Ruediger Stein/AWI Bremerhaven). About 95 scientists from Europe, US, Canada, Russia, Japan, and Korea, and observers from oil companies participated in the workshop. Funding of the workshop was provided by the Consortium for Ocean Leadership (US), the European Science Foundation, the Arctic Ocean Sciences Board, and the

  9. Alaska exceptionality hypothesis: Is Alaska wilderness really different?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gregory Brown

    2002-01-01

    The common idiom of Alaska as “The Last Frontier” suggests that the relative remoteness and unsettled character of Alaska create a unique Alaskan identity, one that is both a “frontier” and the “last” of its kind. The frontier idiom portrays the place and people of Alaska as exceptional or different from the places and people who reside in the Lower Forty- Eight States...

  10. GeoFORCE Alaska: Four-Year Field Program Brings Rural Alaskan High School Students into the STEM Pipeline

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fowell, S. J.; Rittgers, A.; Stephens, L.; Hutchinson, S.; Peters, H.; Snow, E.; Wartes, D.

    2016-12-01

    GeoFORCE Alaska is a four-year, field-based, summer geoscience program designed to raise graduation rates in rural Alaskan high schools, encourage participants to pursue college degrees, and increase the diversity of Alaska's technical workforce. Residents of predominantly Alaska Native villages holding degrees in science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) bring valuable perspectives to decisions regarding management of cultural and natural resources. However, between 2010 and 2015 the average dropout rate for students in grades 7-12 was 8.5% per year in the North Slope School District and 7% per year in the Northwest Arctic School District. 2015 graduation rates were 70% and 75%, respectively. Statewide statistics highlight the challenge for Alaska Native students. During the 2014-2015 school year alone 37.6% of Alaska Native students dropped out of Alaskan public schools. At the college level, Alaska Native students are underrepresented in University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) science departments. Launched in 2012 by UAF in partnership with the longstanding University of Texas at Austin program, GeoFORCE applies the cohort model, leading the same group of high school students on geological field academies during four consecutive summers. Through a combination of active learning, teamwork, and hands-on projects at spectacular geological locations, students gain academic skills and confidence that facilitate high school and college success. To date, GeoFORCE Alaska has recruited two cohorts. 78% of these students identify as Alaska Native, reflecting community demographics. The inaugural cohort of 18 students from the North Slope Borough completed the Fourth-Year Academy in summer 2015. 94% of these students graduated from high school, at least 72% plan to attend college, and 33% will major in geoscience. A second cohort of 34 rising 9th and 10th graders entered the program in 2016. At the request of corporate sponsors, this cohort was recruited from both the

  11. Chemical characteristics of fulvic acids from Arctic surface waters: Microbial contributions and photochemical transformations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cory, Rose M.; McKnight, Diane M.; Chin, Yu-Ping; Miller, Penney; Jaros, Chris L.

    2007-12-01

    Dissolved organic matter (DOM) originating from the extensive Arctic tundra is an important source of organic material to the Arctic Ocean. Chemical characteristics of whole water dissolved organic matter (DOM) and the fulvic acid fraction of DOM were studied from nine surface waters in the Arctic region of Alaska to gain insight into the extent of microbial and photochemical transformation of this DOM. All the fulvic acids had a strong terrestrial/higher plant signature, with uniformly depleted δ13C values of -28‰, and low fluorescence indices around 1.3. Several of the measured chemical characteristics of the Arctic fulvic acids were related to water residence time, a measure of environmental exposure to sunlight and microbial activity. For example, fulvic acids from Arctic streams had higher aromatic contents, higher specific absorbance values, lower nitrogen content, lower amino acid-like fluorescence and were more depleted in δ15N relative to fulvic acids isolated from lake and coastal surface waters. The differences in the nitrogen signature between the lake and coastal fulvic acids compared to the stream fulvic acids indicated that microbial contributions to the fulvic acid pool increased with increasing water residence time. The photo-lability of the fulvic acids was positively correlated with water residence time, suggesting that the fulvic acids isolated from source waters with larger water residence times (i.e., lakes and coastal waters) have experienced greater photochemical degradation than the stream fulvic acids. In addition, many of the initial differences in fulvic acid chemical characteristics across the gradient of water residence times were consistent with changes observed in fulvic acid photolysis experiments. Taken together, results from this study suggest that photochemical processes predominantly control the chemical character of fulvic acids in Arctic surface waters. Our findings show that hydrologic transport in addition to

  12. Recent increased warming of the Alaskan marine Arctic due to midlatitude linkages

    Science.gov (United States)

    Overland, James E.; Wang, Muyin; Ballinger, Thomas J.

    2018-01-01

    Alaskan Arctic waters have participated in hemispheric-wide Arctic warming over the last two decades at over two times the rate of global warming. During 2008-13, this relative warming occurred only north of the Bering Strait and the atmospheric Arctic front that forms a north-south thermal barrier. This front separates the southeastern Bering Sea temperatures from Arctic air masses. Model projections show that future temperatures in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas continue to warm at a rate greater than the global rate, reaching a change of +4°C by 2040 relative to the 1981-2010 mean. Offshore at 74°N, climate models project the open water duration season to increase from a current average of three months to five months by 2040. These rates are occasionally enhanced by midlatitude connections. Beginning in August 2014, additional Arctic warming was initiated due to increased SST anomalies in the North Pacific and associated shifts to southerly winds over Alaska, especially in winter 2015-16. While global warming and equatorial teleconnections are implicated in North Pacific SSTs, the ending of the 2014-16 North Pacific warm event demonstrates the importance of internal, chaotic atmospheric natural variability on weather conditions in any given year. Impacts from global warming on Alaskan Arctic temperature increases and sea-ice and snow loss, with occasional North Pacific support, are projected to continue to propagate through the marine ecosystem in the foreseeable future. The ecological and societal consequences of such changes show a radical departure from the current Arctic environment.

  13. Mineral constraints on arctic caribou (Rangifer tarandus): a spatial and phenological perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oster, K. W.; Barboza, P.S.; Gustine, David D.; Joly, Kyle; Shively, R. D.

    2018-01-01

    Arctic caribou (Rangifer tarandus) have the longest terrestrial migration of any ungulate but little is known about the spatial and seasonal variation of minerals in summer forages and the potential impacts of mineral nutrition on the foraging behavior and nutritional condition of arctic caribou. We investigated the phenology, availability, and mechanistic relationships of calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, sodium, potassium, iron, manganese, copper, and zinc in three species of woody browse, three species of graminoids, and one forb preferred by caribou over two transects bisecting the ranges of the Central Arctic (CAH) and Western Arctic (WAH) caribou herds in Alaska. Transects traversed three ecoregions (Coastal Plain, Arctic Foothills and Brooks Range) along known migration paths in the summer ranges of both herds. Concentrations of mineral in forages were compared to estimated dietary requirements of lactating female caribou. Spatial distribution of the abundance of minerals in caribou forage was associated with interactions of soil pH and mineral content, while temporal variation was related to plant maturity, and thus nitrogen and fiber content of forages. Concentrations of sodium were below caribou requirements in all forage species for most of the summer and adequate only on the Coastal Plain during the second half of summer. Phosphorus declined in plants from emergence to senescence and was below requirements in all forages by mid‐summer, while concentrations of copper declined to marginal concentrations at plant senescence. Interactions of sodium with potassium, calcium with phosphorus, and copper with zinc in forages likely exacerbate the constraints of low concentrations sodium, phosphorus, and copper. Forages on the WAH contained significantly more phosphorus and copper than forages collected on the CAH transect. We suspect that migrations of caribou to the Arctic Coastal Plain may allow parturient females to replenish sodium stores depleted by

  14. Characterization of ice nucleating particles during continuous springtime measurements in Prudhoe Bay: an Arctic oilfield location

    Science.gov (United States)

    Creamean, J.; Spada, N. J.; Kirpes, R.; Pratt, K.

    2017-12-01

    Aerosols that serve as ice nucleating particles (INPs) have the potential to modulate cloud microphysical properties. INPs can thus subsequently impact cloud radiative forcing in addition to modification of precipitation formation processes. In regions such as the Arctic, aerosol-cloud interactions are severely understudied yet have significant implications for surface radiation reaching the sea ice and snow surfaces. Further, uncertainties in model representations of heterogeneous ice nucleation are a significant hindrance to simulating Arctic mixed-phase cloud processes. Characterizing a combination of aerosol chemical, physical, and ice nucleating properties is pertinent to evaluating of the role of aerosols in altering Arctic cloud microphysics. We present preliminary results from an aerosol sampling campaign called INPOP (Ice Nucleating Particles at Oliktok Point), which took place at a U.S. Department of Energy's Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (DOE ARM) facility on the North Slope of Alaska. Three time- and size-resolved aerosol samplers were deployed from 1 Mar to 31 May 2017 and were co-located with routine measurements of aerosol number, size, chemical, and radiative property measurements conducted by DOE ARM at their Aerosol Observing System (AOS). Offline analysis of samples collected at a daily time resolution included composition and morphology via single-particle analysis and drop freezing measurements for INP concentrations, while analysis of 12-hourly samples included mass, optical, and elemental composition. We deliberate the possible influences on the aerosol and INP population from the Prudhoe Bay oilfield resource extraction and daily operations in addition to what may be local background or long-range transported aerosol. To our knowledge our results represent some of the first INP characterization measurements in an Arctic oilfield location and can be used as a benchmark for future INP characterization studies in Arctic locations impacted

  15. Indigenous observations of climate change in the Lower Yukon River Basin, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herman-Mercer, Nicole M.; Schuster, Paul F.; Maracle, Karonhiakt'tie

    2011-01-01

    Natural science climate change studies have led to an overwhelming amount of evidence that the Arctic and Subarctic are among the world's first locations to begin experiencing climate change. Indigenous knowledge of northern regions is a valuable resource to assess the effects of climate change on the people and the landscape. Most studies, however, have focused on coastal Arctic and Subarctic communities with relatively little focus on inland communities. This paper relates the findings from fieldwork conducted in the Lower Yukon River Basin of Alaska in the spring of 2009. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with hunters and elders in the villages of St. Mary's and Pitka's Point, Alaska to document observations of climate change. This study assumes that scientific findings and indigenous knowledge are complementary and seeks to overcome the false dichotomy that these two ways of knowing are in opposition. The observed changes in the climate communicated by the hunters and elders of St. Mary's and Pitka's Point, Alaska are impacting the community in ways ranging from subsistence (shifting flora and fauna patterns), concerns about safety (unpredictable weather patterns and dangerous ice conditions), and a changing resource base (increased reliance on fossil fuels). Here we attempt to address the challenges of integrating these two ways of knowing while relating indigenous observations as described by elders and hunters of the study area to those described by scientific literature.

  16. Analysis of WRF extreme daily precipitation over Alaska using self-organizing maps

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glisan, Justin M.; Gutowski, William J.; Cassano, John J.; Cassano, Elizabeth N.; Seefeldt, Mark W.

    2016-07-01

    We analyze daily precipitation extremes from simulations of a polar-optimized version of the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model. Simulations cover 19 years and use the Regional Arctic System Model (RASM) domain. We focus on Alaska because of its proximity to the Pacific and Arctic oceans; both provide large moisture fetch inland. Alaska's topography also has important impacts on orographically forced precipitation. We use self-organizing maps (SOMs) to understand circulation characteristics conducive for extreme precipitation events. The SOM algorithm employs an artificial neural network that uses an unsupervised training process, which results in finding general patterns of circulation behavior. The SOM is trained with mean sea level pressure (MSLP) anomalies. Widespread extreme events, defined as at least 25 grid points experiencing 99th percentile precipitation, are examined using SOMs. Widespread extreme days are mapped onto the SOM of MSLP anomalies, indicating circulation patterns. SOMs aid in determining high-frequency nodes, and hence, circulations are conducive to extremes. Multiple circulation patterns are responsible for extreme days, which are differentiated by where extreme events occur in Alaska. Additionally, several meteorological fields are composited for nodes accessed by extreme and nonextreme events to determine specific conditions necessary for a widespread extreme event. Individual and adjacent node composites produce more physically reasonable circulations as opposed to composites of all extremes, which include multiple synoptic regimes. Temporal evolution of extreme events is also traced through SOM space. Thus, this analysis lays the groundwork for diagnosing differences in atmospheric circulations and their associated widespread, extreme precipitation events.

  17. Small mammal baseline surveys, Alaska Peninsula/Becharof NWR, Alaska, Summer 2004, addendum

    Data.gov (United States)

    Department of the Interior — This document supplements the report Small Mammal Baseline Surveys, Alaska Peninsula / Becharof NWR, Alaska – Summer 2004. After completion of that report additional...

  18. Arctic Nuclear Waste Assessment Program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Edson, R.

    1995-01-01

    The Arctic Nuclear Waste Assessment Program (ANWAP) was initiated in 1993 as a result of US congressional concern over the disposal of nuclear materials by the former Soviet Union into the Arctic marine environment. The program is comprised of appr. 70 different projects. To date appr. ten percent of the funds has gone to Russian institutions for research and logistical support. The collaboration also include the IAEA International Arctic Seas Assessment Program. The major conclusion from the research to date is that the largest signals for region-wide radionuclide contamination in the Arctic marine environment appear to arise from the following: 1) atmospheric testing of nuclear weapons, a practice that has been discontinued; 2) nuclear fuel reprocessing wastes carried in the Arctic from reprocessing facilities in Western Europe, and 3) accidents such as Chernobyl and the 1957 explosion at Chelyabinsk-65

  19. Arctic interests and policy of France

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yuri I. Rubinsky

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available The author considers scientific, economic and political activities of France for the development and exploration of the Arctic, providing security there. Along with some other non-Arctic countries, France is not ready to accept such a situation when eight members of the Arctic Council solve Arctic problems on behalf of all mankind.

  20. Arctic interests and policy of France

    OpenAIRE

    Yuri I. Rubinsky

    2016-01-01

    The author considers scientific, economic and political activities of France for the development and exploration of the Arctic, providing security there. Along with some other non-Arctic countries, France is not ready to accept such a situation when eight members of the Arctic Council solve Arctic problems on behalf of all mankind.

  1. Summertime measurements of selected nonmethane hydrocarbons in the Arctic and Subarctic during the 1988 Arctic Boundary Layer Expedition (ABLE 3A)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blake, Donald R.; Hurst, Dale F.; Smith, Tyrrel W., Jr.; Whipple, Wayne J.; Chen, Tai-Yih; Blake, Nicola J.; Rowland, F. S.

    1992-01-01

    The concentration distributions of several nonmethane hydrocarbons (NMHIC) in the Arctic and Subarctic regions of Alaska are discussed using data obtained during July and August of 1988 as part of the Arctic Boundary Layer Expedition (ABLE 3A). Plume enhancement of some or all of the measured NMHIC were observed on more than half of the 33 missions flown during the project. The usual summer vertical profile of reactive hydrocarbons at these high latitudes has elevated concentrations at high altitudes, with mixing ratio variations largely controlled by hydroxyl radical reactions. Wildfires were established as a significant source of various NMHIC. Biomass burning emission ratios relative to ethane were established for ethyne (0.38 +/- 0.04) and propane (0.08 +/- 0.03). Activities associated with oil drilling are a probable source of enhanced levels of alkanes observed as much as 300 km northeast of Prudhoe Bay.

  2. Radionuclides in the Arctic seas from the former Soviet Union: Potential health and ecological risks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Layton, D.W.; Edson, R.; Varela, M.; Napier, B.

    1999-01-01

    The primary goal of the assessment reported here is to evaluate the health and environmental threat to coastal Alaska posed by radioactive-waste dumping in the Arctic and Northwest Pacific Oceans by the FSU. In particular, the FSU discarded 16 nuclear reactors from submarines and an icebreaker in the Kara Sea near the island of Novaya Zemlya, of which 6 contained spent nuclear fuel (SNF); disposed of liquid and solid wastes in the Sea of Japan; lost a 90 Sr-powered radioisotope thermoelectric generator at sea in the Sea of Okhotsk; and disposed of liquid wastes at several sites in the Pacific Ocean, east of the Kamchatka Peninsula. In addition to these known sources in the oceans, the RAIG evaluated FSU waste-disposal practices at inland weapons-development sites that have contaminated major rivers flowing into the Arctic Ocean. The RAIG evaluated these sources for the potential for release to the environment, transport, and impact to Alaskan ecosystems and peoples through a variety of scenarios, including a worst-case total instantaneous and simultaneous release of the sources under investigation. The risk-assessment process described in this report is applicable to and can be used by other circumpolar countries, with the addition of information about specific ecosystems and human life-styles. They can use the ANWAP risk-assessment framework and approach used by ONR to establish potential doses for Alaska, but add their own specific data sets about human and ecological factors. The ANWAP risk assessment addresses the following Russian wastes, media, and receptors: dumped nuclear submarines and icebreaker in Kara Sea--marine pathways; solid reactor parts in Sea of Japan and Pacific Ocean--marine pathways; thermoelectric generator in Sea of Okhotsk--marine pathways; current known aqueous wastes in Mayak reservoirs and Asanov Marshes--riverine to marine pathways; and Alaska as receptor. For these waste and source terms addressed, other pathways, such as atmospheric

  3. A promising tool for subsurface permafrost mapping-An application of airborne geophysics from the Yukon River Basin, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abraham, Jared E.

    2011-01-01

    Permafrost is a predominant physical feature of the Earth's Arctic and Subarctic clines and a major consideration encompassing ecosystem structure to infrastructure engineering and placement. Perennially frozen ground is estimated to cover about 85 percent of the state of Alaska where northern reaches are underlain with continuous permafrost and parts of interior Alaska are underlain by areas of discontinuous and (or) sporadic permafrost (fig. 1). The region of Interior Alaska, where permafrost is scattered among unfrozen ground, is a complex mosaic of terrains and habitats. Such diversity creates arrays of lakes and surface-water and groundwater patterns that continental populations of migratory waterfowl and internationally significant fisheries have adapted to over time. A road or pipeline might pass over frozen and unfrozen ground, affecting the types of materials and engineering approaches needed to sustain the infrastructure.

  4. Mapping wildfire burn severity in the Arctic Tundra from downsampled MODIS data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolden, Crystal A.; Rogan, John

    2013-01-01

    Wildfires are historically infrequent in the arctic tundra, but are projected to increase with climate warming. Fire effects on tundra ecosystems are poorly understood and difficult to quantify in a remote region where a short growing season severely limits ground data collection. Remote sensing has been widely utilized to characterize wildfire regimes, but primarily from the Landsat sensor, which has limited data acquisition in the Arctic. Here, coarse-resolution remotely sensed data are assessed as a means to quantify wildfire burn severity of the 2007 Anaktuvuk River Fire in Alaska, the largest tundra wildfire ever recorded on Alaska's North Slope. Data from Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) and downsampled Moderate-resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) were processed to spectral indices and correlated to observed metrics of surface, subsurface, and comprehensive burn severity. Spectral indices were strongly correlated to surface severity (maximum R2 = 0.88) and slightly less strongly correlated to substrate severity. Downsampled MODIS data showed a decrease in severity one year post-fire, corroborating rapid vegetation regeneration observed on the burned site. These results indicate that widely-used spectral indices and downsampled coarse-resolution data provide a reasonable supplement to often-limited ground data collection for analysis and long-term monitoring of wildfire effects in arctic ecosystems.

  5. AMAP Assessment 2013: Arctic Ocean acidification

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    This assessment report presents the results of the 2013 AMAP Assessment of Arctic Ocean Acidification (AOA). This is the first such assessment dealing with AOA from an Arctic-wide perspective, and complements several assessments that AMAP has delivered over the past ten years concerning the effects of climate change on Arctic ecosystems and people. The Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP) is a group working under the Arctic Council. The Arctic Council Ministers have requested AMAP to: - produce integrated assessment reports on the status and trends of the conditions of the Arctic ecosystems;

  6. The influence of local oil exploration and regional wildfires on summer 2015 aerosol over the North Slope of Alaska

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. M. Creamean

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The Arctic is warming at an alarming rate, yet the processes that contribute to the enhanced warming are not well understood. Arctic aerosols have been targeted in studies for decades due to their consequential impacts on the energy budget, both directly and indirectly through their ability to modulate cloud microphysics. Even with the breadth of knowledge afforded from these previous studies, aerosols and their effects remain poorly quantified, especially in the rapidly changing Arctic. Additionally, many previous studies involved use of ground-based measurements, and due to the frequent stratified nature of the Arctic atmosphere, brings into question the representativeness of these datasets aloft. Here, we report on airborne observations from the US Department of Energy Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM program's Fifth Airborne Carbon Measurements (ACME-V field campaign along the North Slope of Alaska during the summer of 2015. Contrary to previous evidence that the Alaskan Arctic summertime air is relatively pristine, we show how local oil extraction activities, 2015's central Alaskan wildfires, and, to a lesser extent, long-range transport introduce aerosols and trace gases higher in concentration than previously reported in Arctic haze measurements to the North Slope. Although these sources were either episodic or localized, they serve as abundant aerosol sources that have the potential to impact a larger spatial scale after emission.

  7. The influence of local oil exploration and regional wildfires on summer 2015 aerosol over the North Slope of Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Creamean, Jessie M.; Maahn, Maximilian; de Boer, Gijs; McComiskey, Allison; Sedlacek, Arthur J.; Feng, Yan

    2018-01-01

    The Arctic is warming at an alarming rate, yet the processes that contribute to the enhanced warming are not well understood. Arctic aerosols have been targeted in studies for decades due to their consequential impacts on the energy budget, both directly and indirectly through their ability to modulate cloud microphysics. Even with the breadth of knowledge afforded from these previous studies, aerosols and their effects remain poorly quantified, especially in the rapidly changing Arctic. Additionally, many previous studies involved use of ground-based measurements, and due to the frequent stratified nature of the Arctic atmosphere, brings into question the representativeness of these datasets aloft. Here, we report on airborne observations from the US Department of Energy Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) program's Fifth Airborne Carbon Measurements (ACME-V) field campaign along the North Slope of Alaska during the summer of 2015. Contrary to previous evidence that the Alaskan Arctic summertime air is relatively pristine, we show how local oil extraction activities, 2015's central Alaskan wildfires, and, to a lesser extent, long-range transport introduce aerosols and trace gases higher in concentration than previously reported in Arctic haze measurements to the North Slope. Although these sources were either episodic or localized, they serve as abundant aerosol sources that have the potential to impact a larger spatial scale after emission.

  8. a New Japanese Project for Arctic Climate Change Research - Grene Arctic - (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enomoto, H.

    2013-12-01

    A new Arctic Climate Change Research Project 'Rapid Change of the Arctic Climate System and its Global Influences' has started in 2011 for a five years project. GRENE-Arctic project is an initiative of Arctic study by more than 30 Japanese universities and institutes as the flame work of GRENE (Green Network of Excellence) of MEXT (Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Japan). The GRENE-Arctic project set four strategic research targets: 1. Understanding the mechanism of warming amplification in the Arctic 2. Understanding the Arctic system for global climate and future change 3. Evaluation of the effects of Arctic change on weather in Japan, marine ecosystems and fisheries 4. Prediction of sea Ice distribution and Arctic sea routes This project aims to realize the strategic research targets by executing following studies: -Improvement of coupled general circulation models based on validations of the Arctic climate reproducibility and on mechanism analyses of the Arctic climate change and variability -The role of Arctic cryosphere in the global change -Change in terrestrial ecosystem of pan-Arctic and its effect on climate -Studies on greenhouse gas cycles in the Arctic and their responses to climate change -Atmospheric studies on Arctic change and its global impacts -Ecosystem studies of the Arctic ocean declining Sea ice -Projection of Arctic Sea ice responding to availability of Arctic sea route (* ** ***) *Changes in the Arctic ocean and mechanisms on catastrophic reduction of Arctic sea ice cover **Coordinated observational and modeling studies on the basic structure and variability of the Arctic sea ice-ocean system ***Sea ice prediction and construction of ice navigation support system for the Arctic sea route. Although GRENE Arctic project aims to product scientific contribution in a concentrated program during 2011-2016, Japanese Arctic research community established Japan Consortium for Arctic Environmental Research (JCAR) in May

  9. Seasonality of dissolved nitrogen from spring melt to fall freezeup in Alaskan Arctic tundra and mountain streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khosh, Matthew S.; McClelland, James W.; Jacobson, Andrew D.; Douglas, Thomas A.; Barker, Amanda J.; Lehn, Gregory O.

    2017-07-01

    Predicting the response of dissolved nitrogen export from Arctic watersheds to climate change requires an improved understanding of seasonal nitrogen dynamics. Recent studies of Arctic rivers emphasize the importance of spring thaw as a time when large fluxes of nitrogen are exported from Arctic watersheds, but studies capturing the entire hydrologic year are rare. We examined the temporal variability of dissolved organic nitrogen (DON) and dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN) concentrations in six streams/rivers in Arctic Alaska from spring melt to fall freezeup (May through October) in 2009 and 2010. DON concentrations were generally high during snowmelt and declined as runoff decreased. DIN concentrations were low through the spring and summer and increased markedly during the late summer and fall, primarily due to an increase in nitrate. The high DIN concentrations were observed to occur when seasonal soil thaw depths were near maximum extents. Concurrent increases in DIN and DIN-to-chloride ratios suggest that net increases from nitrogen sources contributed to these elevated DIN concentrations. Our stream chemistry data, combined with soil thermistor data, suggest that downward penetration of water into seasonally thawed mineral soils, and reduction in biological nitrogen assimilation relative to remineralization, may increase DIN export from Arctic watersheds during the late summer and fall. While this is part of a natural cycle, improved understanding of seasonal nitrogen dynamics is particularly important now because warmer temperatures in the Arctic are causing earlier spring snowmelt and later fall freezeup in many regions.

  10. 2005 Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys Lidar: Unalakleet, Alaska

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This report is a summary of a LiDAR data collection over the community of Unalakleet, in the Norton Sound region of Alaska. The original data were collected on...

  11. Russia in the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-01

    Arctic as a new Canadian flagship. The decision—approved almost unanimously by the House of Commons in spite of protests from northern Inuit ...1961. 25. “State-of-the- art nuclear submarines to the Russian Navy,” Barents Observer, June 19, 2009, available from www.bar- entsobserver.com/state-of...the- art -nuclear-submarines-to-the-russian- navy.4608935-58932.html. 26. “Sineva extended range launch,” Russianforces.org, Octo- ber 11, 2008

  12. Green Arctic Patrol Vessel

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-08-01

    Complement Flexible space for hovercraft , airboats, USVs and RHIBs Naval Surface Warfare Center Carderock Division Green Arctic Patrol Vessel 1...through Sea State 3 (SS3). Flexible capability for a variety of organic craft, such as boat, hovercraft and/or Unmanned Underwater Vehicles (UUVs...2.0, Finland 6.0 2.7 2.8 6 1.8 Hovercraft Griffon/500TD 8.04 3.92 2.41 99 5 ~1.5 Hovercraft Griffon/2000TD 12.7 6.1 3.93 450 20

  13. Research with Arctic peoples

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Smith, H Sally; Bjerregaard, Peter; Chan, Hing Man

    2006-01-01

    entitled "Research with Arctic Peoples: Unique Research Opportunities in Heart, Lung, Blood and Sleep Disorders". The meeting was international in scope with investigators from Greenland, Iceland and Russia, as well as Canada and the United States. Multiple health agencies from Canada and the United States...... sent representatives. Also attending were representatives from the International Union for Circumpolar Health (IUCH) and the National Indian Health Board. The working group developed a set of ten recommendations related to research opportunities in heart, lung, blood and sleep disorders; obstacles...

  14. Survey of Indoor Air Quality in the University of Alaska

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kotol, Martin; Craven, Colin; Rode, Carsten

    2014-01-01

    problem which is poor indoor air quality (IAQ). During summer 2012 four student homes were built in Fairbanks, Alaska as a part of Sustainable Village project. The aim of this project is to promote sustainable ways of living in the Arctic and to study new technologies and their applicability in the cold......In cold climates living inside the heated space requires considerable amounts of heat. With the intention to decrease the heating demand, people are insulating their homes and make them more air tight. With the natural infiltration being brought close to zero there has been an increase of a new...... north. This paper presents the results of an IAQ survey performed in the homes during two weeks in December 2012. During this survey the air temperature, relative humidity (RH) and CO2 concentration were measured in all occupied bedrooms along with monitoring of the ventilation units. The results have...

  15. Semiautomatic mapping of permafrost in the Yukon Flats, Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gulbrandsen, Mats Lundh; Minsley, Burke J.; Ball, Lyndsay B.; Hansen, Thomas Mejer

    2016-01-01

    Thawing of permafrost due to global warming can have major impacts on hydrogeological processes, climate feedback, arctic ecology, and local environments. To understand these effects and processes, it is crucial to know the distribution of permafrost. In this study we exploit the fact that airborne electromagnetic (AEM) data are sensitive to the distribution of permafrost and demonstrate how the distribution of permafrost in the Yukon Flats, Alaska, is mapped in an efficient (semiautomatic) way, using a combination of supervised and unsupervised (machine) learning algorithms, i.e., Smart Interpretation and K-means clustering. Clustering is used to sort unfrozen and frozen regions, and Smart Interpretation is used to predict the depth of permafrost based on expert interpretations. This workflow allows, for the first time, a quantitative and objective approach to efficiently map permafrost based on large amounts of AEM data.

  16. Arctic sea ice a major determinant in Mandt's black guillemot movement and distribution during non-breeding season

    Science.gov (United States)

    Divoky, G.J.; Douglas, David C.; Stenhouse, I. J.

    2016-01-01

    Mandt's black guillemot (Cepphus grylle mandtii) is one of the few seabirds associated in all seasons with Arctic sea ice, a habitat that is changing rapidly. Recent decreases in summer ice have reduced breeding success and colony size of this species in Arctic Alaska. Little is known about the species' movements and distribution during the nine month non-breeding period (September–May), when changes in sea ice extent and composition are also occurring and predicted to continue. To examine bird movements and the seasonal role of sea ice to non-breeding Mandt's black guillemots, we deployed and recovered (n = 45) geolocators on individuals at a breeding colony in Arctic Alaska during 2011–2015. Black guillemots moved north to the marginal ice zone (MIZ) in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas immediately after breeding, moved south to the Bering Sea during freeze-up in December, and wintered in the Bering Sea January–April. Most birds occupied the MIZ in regions averaging 30–60% sea ice concentration, with little seasonal variation. Birds regularly roosted on ice in all seasons averaging 5 h d−1, primarily at night. By using the MIZ, with its roosting opportunities and associated prey, black guillemots can remain in the Arctic during winter when littoral waters are completely covered by ice.

  17. Modeling growth of mandibles in the Western Arctic caribou herd

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jay M. Ver Hoef

    2001-03-01

    Full Text Available We compared growth curves for ramus length and diastema length from two autumn collections of mandibles of male Western Arctic Herd caribou in Alaska. We were primarily interested in determining if growth curves of caribou mandibles differed between caribou born during 1959-1967, after the herd had been high for several years and was probably declining in size, and those born during 1976-1988, when the herd was increasing in size. To compare these growth curves, we used a nonlinear model and used maximum likelihood estimates and likelihood ratio tests. We found that growth rates were similar between periods, but intercepts and variances of growth curves differed. From this we infer that calves were smaller in autumn during the 1960s and that significant compensatory growth did not occur later in life.

  18. Source attribution of black carbon in Arctic snow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hegg, Dean A; Warren, Stephen G; Grenfell, Thomas C; Doherty, Sarah J; Larson, Timothy V; Clarke, Antony D

    2009-06-01

    Snow samples obtained at 36 sites in Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Russia, and the Arctic Ocean in early 2007 were analyzed for light-absorbing aerosol concentration together with a suite of associated chemical species. The light absorption data, interpreted as black carbon concentrations, and other chemical data were input into the EPA PMF 1.1 receptor model to explore the sources for black carbon in the snow. The analysis found four factors or sources: two distinct biomass burning sources, a pollution source, and a marine source. The first three of these were responsible for essentially all of the black carbon, with the two biomass sources (encompassing both open and closed combustion) together accounting for >90% of the black carbon.

  19. Lithostratigraphic, conodont, and other faunal links between lower Paleozoic strata in northern and central Alaska and northeastern Russia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dumoulin, Julie A.; Harris, Anita G.; Gagiev, Mussa; Bradley, Dwight C.; Repetski, John E.

    2002-01-01

    Lower Paleozoic platform carbonate strata in northern Alaska (parts of the Arctic Alaska, York, and Seward terranes; herein called the North Alaska carbonate platform) and central Alaska (Farewell terrane) share distinctive lithologic and faunal features, and may have formed on a single continental fragment situated between Siberia and Laurentia. Sedimentary successions in northern and central Alaska overlie Late Proterozoic metamorphosed basement; contain Late Proterozoic ooid-rich dolostones, Middle Cambrian outer shelf deposits, and Ordovician, Silurian, and Devonian shallow-water platform facies, and include fossils of both Siberian and Laurentian biotic provinces. The presence in the Alaskan terranes of Siberian forms not seen in wellstudied cratonal margin sequences of western Laurentia implies that the Alaskan rocks were not attached to Laurentia during the early Paleozoic.The Siberian cratonal succession includes Archean basement, Ordovician shallow-water siliciclastic rocks, and Upper Silurian–Devonian evaporites, none of which have counterparts in the Alaskan successions, and contains only a few of the Laurentian conodonts that occur in Alaska. Thus we conclude that the lower Paleozoic platform successions of northern and central Alaska were not part of the Siberian craton during their deposition, but may have formed on a crustal fragment rifted away from Siberia during the Late Proterozoic. The Alaskan strata have more similarities to coeval rocks in some peri-Siberian terranes of northeastern Russia (Kotelny, Chukotka, and Omulevka). Lithologic ties between northern Alaska, the Farewell terrane, and the peri-Siberian terranes diminish after the Middle Devonian, but Siberian afµnities in northern and central Alaskan biotas persist into the late Paleozoic.

  20. State of the Arctic Environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1990-01-01

    The Arctic environment, covering about 21 million km 2 , is in this connection regarded as the area north of the Arctic Circle. General biological and physical features of the terrestrial and freshwater environments of the Arctic are briefly described, but most effort is put into a description of the marine part which constitutes about two-thirds of the total Arctic environment. General oceanography and morphological characteristics are included; e.g. that the continental shelf surrounding the Arctic deep water basins covers approximately 36% of the surface areas of Arctic waters, but contains only 2% of the total water masses. Blowout accident may release thousands of tons of oil per day and last for months. They occur statistically very seldom, but the magnitude underlines the necessity of an efficient oil spill contingency as well as sound safety and quality assurance procedures. Contingency plans should be coordinated and regularly evaluated through simulated and practical tests of performance. Arctic conditions demand alternative measures compared to those otherwise used for oil spill prevention and clean-up. New concepts or optimization of existing mechanical equipment is necessary. Chemical and thermal methods should be evaluated for efficiency and possible environmental effects. Both due to regular discharges of oil contaminated drilled cuttings and the possibility of a blowout or other spills, drilling operations in biological sensitive areas may be regulated to take place only during the less sensitive parts of the year. 122 refs., 8 figs., 8 tabs

  1. Germany's strategy for the Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vladislav B. Belov

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available In the last decade Germany has increased activity in the Arctic region. From a formal point of view, the German state connects it with various aspects of international security (mainly — environmental and transport, with needs to respect the rights of peoples living in the Arctic regions and the importance of scientific research in the Arctic. But in reality, they are hiding far-reaching interests of safeguarding the national security of raw materials and access of German concerns to the Arctic resources. In solidarity and in many ways defining the EU's policy in the Arctic, Germany primarily is focusing on their long-term economic and geopolitical goals and objectives, which it will consistently implement in the coming years in the framework of the Arctic Council, and beyond, including within the framework of cooperation with Russia. This article is devoted to the analysis of these goals and objectives, as well as to the definition of medium-term trends in Germany's Arctic policy.

  2. Alaska Geoid Heights (GEOID96)

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — This 2' x 4' geoid height grid for Alaska is distributed as a GEOID96 model. The computation used 1.1 million terrestrial and marine gravity data held in the...

  3. Investigation of Alaska's uranium potential

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eakins, G.R.

    1975-01-01

    Of the various geographical regions in Alaska that were examined in an exhaustive literary search for the possibility of uranium--either vein type or sedimentary--six offer encouragement: the Copper River Basin, the alkaline intrusive belt of west-central Alaska and Selawik Basin area, the Seward Peninsula, the Susitna Lowland, the coal-bearing basins of the north flank of the Alaska Range, the Precambrian gneisses of the USGS 1:250,000 Goodnews quadrangle, and Southeastern Alaska, which has the sole operating uranium mine in the state. Other areas that may be favorable for the presence of uranium include the Yukon Flats area, the Cook Inlet Basin, and the Galena Basin

  4. LED Street Lights in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-09-01

    During winter nights in Alaska, streetlights often remain lit more than half the day, using energy all the while. Around the nation, communities are exploring the use of : light-emitting diode technology for lighting streets and reducing energy use. ...

  5. Level III Ecoregions of Alaska

    Data.gov (United States)

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — Ecoregions denote areas of general similarity in ecosystems and in the type, quality, and quantity of environmental resources. The ecoregions of Alaska are a...

  6. Alaska Interagency Ecosystem Health Work Group

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shasby, Mark

    2009-01-01

    The Alaska Interagency Ecosystem Health Work Group is a community of practice that recognizes the interconnections between the health of ecosystems, wildlife, and humans and meets to facilitate the exchange of ideas, data, and research opportunities. Membership includes the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium, U.S. Geological Survey, Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Alaska Sea Life Center, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

  7. Petroleum prospectivity of the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grantz, Arthur; Hart, Patrick E.

    2012-01-01

    Reconnaissance seismic reflection data indicate that Canada Basin is a >700,000 sq. km. remnant of the Amerasia Basin of the Arctic Ocean that lies south of the Alpha-Mendeleev Large Igneous Province, which was constructed across the northern part of the Amerasia Basin between about 127 and 89-83.5 Ma. Canada Basin was filled by Early Jurassic to Holocene detritus from the Beaufort-Mackenzie Deltaic System, which drains the northern third of interior North America, with sizable contributions from Alaska and Northwest Canada. The basin contains roughly 5 or 6 million cubic km of sediment. Three fourths or more of this volume generates low amplitude seismic reflections, interpreted to represent hemipelagic deposits, which contain lenses to extensive interbeds of moderate amplitude reflections interpreted to represent unconfined turbidite and amalgamated channel deposits.Extrapolation from Arctic Alaska and Northwest Canada suggests that three fourths of the section in Canada Basin is correlative with stratigraphic sequences in these areas that contain intervals of hydrocarbon source rocks. In addition, worldwide heat flow averages suggest that about two thirds of Canada Basin lies in the oil or gas windows. Structural, stratigraphic and combined structural and stratigraphic features of local to regional occurrence offer exploration targets in Canada Basin, and at least one of these contains bright spots. However, deep water (to almost 4000 m), remoteness from harbors and markets, and thick accumulations of seasonal to permanent sea ice (until its possible removal by global warming later this century) will require the discovery of very large deposits for commercial success in most parts of Canada Basin. ?? 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

  8. Russia's strategy in the Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Staun, Jørgen Meedom

    2017-01-01

    Russia's strategy in the Arctic is dominated by two overriding international relations (IR) discourses – or foreign policy directions. On the one hand, there is an IR-realism/geopolitical discourse that puts security first and often has a clear patriotic character, dealing with ‘exploring......’, ‘negotiation’ and ‘cooperation’, and labels the Arctic as a ‘territory of dialogue’, arguing that the Arctic states all benefit the most if they cooperate peacefully. After a short but very visible media stunt in 2007 and subsequent public debate by proponents of the IR realism/geopolitical side, the IR...

  9. Seasonal Changes in Arctic Dissolved Organic Matter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boot, C. M.; Wallenstein, M. D.; Schimel, J.

    2011-12-01

    The Arctic is a landscape in flux. Temperatures are shifting upward and plant communities are transitioning from tussock to shrub tundra in some regions. Decomposition processes sensitive to temperature, moisture, and plant inputs are controls on the source/sink dynamics of the Arctic C pool. The response of decomposition to warming will, in part, determine if the Arctic C pool feeds back positively or negatively to climate change. The portion of the C pool immediately available to decomposers is dissolved organic matter (DOM). The aim of this is study is to examine the molecular composition of DOM to determine which components vary seasonally in soil pore water among three vegetation types at Toolik Field Station in Alaska. Vegetation types include wet sedge (Carex aquatilis and Eriophorum angustifolium), moist acidic tussock (E. vaginatum) and shrub tundra (Betula nana and Salix sp.). These sites were sampled during winter/summer transitions in 2010 in order to capture both growing season and winter dynamics. We expected the chemical composition of DOM in pore water to be distinct among plant communities due to differences in root exudates, litter chemistry and microbial community; and vary seasonally due to shifting temperature and water availability and their impacts on decomposition of DOM. Soil pore water was isolated through centrifugation and is being characterized with ultra high performance liquid chromatography (UPLC) in line with a quadrupole time of flight mass spectrometer (QTOF-MS) as well as with specific UV absorbance at 254 nm (SUVA), and excitation emission matrices (EEMs) generated by fluorescence spectroscopy. The DOM concentrations across vegetation types show consistent seasonal patterns, spiking at thaw, and declining through late summer. As soils freeze these patterns diverge-in tussock soils DOM concentration decreases slightly, while in shrub and wet sedge sites it increases. SUVA values (indicator of aromaticity) were consistent among

  10. Science for Alaska: Public Understanding of University Research Priorities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, D.

    2015-12-01

    Science for Alaska: Public Understanding of Science D. L. Campbell11University of Alaska Fairbanks, USA Around 200 people brave 40-below-zero temperatures to listen to university researchers and scientists give lectures about their work at an event called the Science for Alaska Lecture Series, hosted by the University of Alaska Fairbanks Geophysical Institute. It is held once a week, for six weeks during the coldest part of a Fairbanks, Alaska, winter. The topics range from space physics to remote sensing. The lectures last for 45 minutes with 15 minutes for audience questions and answers. It has been popular for about 20 years and is one of many public outreach efforts of the institute. The scientists are careful in their preparations for presentations and GI's Public Relations staff chooses the speakers based on topic, diversity and public interest. The staff also considers the speaker's ability to speak to a general audience, based on style, clarity and experience. I conducted a qualitative research project to find out about the people who attended the event, why they attend and what they do with the information they hear about. The participants were volunteers who attended the event and either stayed after the lectures for an interview or signed up to be contacted later. I used used an interview technique with open-ended questions, recorded and transcribed the interview. I identified themes in the interviews, using narrative analysis. Preliminary data show that the lecture series is a form of entertainment for people who are highly educated and work in demanding and stressful jobs. They come with family and friends. Sometimes it's a date with a significant other. Others want to expose their children to science. The findings are in keeping with the current literature that suggests that public events meant to increase public understanding of science instead draws like-minded people. The findings are different from Campbell's hypothesis that attendance was based

  11. Satellite Derived Bathymetry as a Coastal Geo-Intelligence Tool for Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ventura, D. C.

    2017-12-01

    What do marine rescue, navigation safety, resource management, coastal infrastructure management, climate adaptation and resilience, economic investment, habitat protection agencies and institutions all have in common? They all benefit from accurate coastal bathymetric data As Arctic-Related Incidents of National Significance (IoNS) workshop points out, reducing time and cost of collecting coastal bathymetry in the Arctic is fundamental to addressing needs of a multitude of stakeholders. Until recently, high resolution coastal data acquisition involved field mobilization of planes, vessels, and people. Given limited resources, short season and remoteness, this approach results in very modest progress toward filling the Alaska's coastal bathymetry data gap and updating vintage data from circa Captain Cook.After successfully executing Satellite Derived Bathymetry (SDB) projects in other more environmentally suitable locations, Fugro and its partner EOMAP are now assessing suitability SDB technique along the Alaska coast. This includes aaccessing archived satellite data and understanding best environmental conditions for the mapping and defining maximum mapping depth as an initial action to understand potentials for Alaska. Here we leverage the physics-based approach to satellite imagery data extraction to derive water depth and complimentary intelligence such as seafloor habitat mapping and certain water quality parameters, such as clarity, turbidity, sediment and chlorophyll-a concentrations, and seasonal changes. Both new and archive imagery are utilized as part of the process. If successful, the benefits and cost savings of this approach are enormous as repeat rate for data collects like this can be measured in months/years as opposed to decades/centuries. Arctic coasts have multiple vulnerabilities and the rate of change will continue to outpace the budgets. As innovative and learning organizations, Fugro and EOMAP strive to not only share the results of this

  12. Squaring the Arctic Circle: connecting Arctic knowledge with societal needs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilkinson, J.

    2017-12-01

    Over the coming years the landscape of the Arctic will change substantially- environmentally, politically, and economically. Furthermore, Arctic change has the potential to significantly impact Arctic and non-Arctic countries alike. Thus, our science is in-demand by local communities, politicians, industry leaders and the public. During these times of transition it is essential that the links between science and society be strengthened further. Strong links between science and society is exactly what is needed for the development of better decision-making tools to support sustainable development, enable adaptation to climate change, provide the information necessary for improved management of assets and operations in the Arctic region, and and to inform scientific, economic, environmental and societal policies. By doing so tangible benefits will flow to Arctic societies, as well as for non-Arctic countries that will be significantly affected by climate change. Past experience has shown that the engagement with a broad range of stakeholders is not always an easy process. Consequently, we need to improve collaborative opportunities between scientists, indigenous/local communities, private sector, policy makers, NGOs, and other relevant stakeholders. The development of best practices in this area must build on the collective experiences of successful cross-sectorial programmes. Within this session we present some of the outreach work we have performed within the EU programme ICE-ARC, from community meetings in NW Greenland through to sessions at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change COP Conferences, industry round tables, and an Arctic side event at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

  13. Can we constrain postglacial sedimentation in the western Arctic Ocean by ramped pyrolysis 14C? A case study from the Chukchi-Alaskan margin.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suzuki, K.; Yamamoto, M.; Rosenheim, B. E.; Omori, T.; Polyak, L.; Nam, S. I.

    2017-12-01

    The Arctic Ocean underwent dramatic climate changes in the past. Variations in sea-ice extent and ocean current system in the Arctic cause changes in surface albedo and deep water formation, which have global climatic implications. However, Arctic paleoceanographic studies are lagging behind the other oceans due largely to chronostratigraphic difficulties. One of the reasons for this is a scant presence of material suitable for 14C dating in large areas of the Arctic seafloor. To enable improved age constraints for sediments impoverished in datable material, we apply ramped pyrolysis 14C method (Ramped PyrOx 14C, Rosenheim et al., 2008) to sedimentary records from the Chukchi-Alaska margin recovering Holocene to late-glacial deposits. Samples were divided into five fraction products by gradual heating sedimentary organic carbon from ambient laboratory temperature to 1000°C. The thermographs show a trimodal pattern of organic matter decomposition over temperature, and we consider that CO2 generated at the lowest temperature range was derived from autochthonous organic carbon contemporaneous with sediment deposition, similar to studies in the Antarctic margin and elsewhere. For verification of results, some of the samples treated for ramped pyrolysis 14C were taken from intervals dated earlier by AMS 14C using bivalve mollusks. Ultimately, our results allow a new appraisal of deglacial to Holocene deposition at the Chukchi-Alaska margin with potential to be applied to other regions of the Arctic Ocean.

  14. Alaska Athabascan stellar astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cannon, Christopher M.

    2014-01-01

    Stellar astronomy is a fundamental component of Alaska Athabascan cultures that facilitates time-reckoning, navigation, weather forecasting, and cosmology. Evidence from the linguistic record suggests that a group of stars corresponding to the Big Dipper is the only widely attested constellation across the Northern Athabascan languages. However, instruction from expert Athabascan consultants shows that the correlation of these names with the Big Dipper is only partial. In Alaska Gwich'in, Ahtna, and Upper Tanana languages the Big Dipper is identified as one part of a much larger circumpolar humanoid constellation that spans more than 133 degrees across the sky. The Big Dipper is identified as a tail, while the other remaining asterisms within the humanoid constellation are named using other body part terms. The concept of a whole-sky humanoid constellation provides a single unifying system for mapping the night sky, and the reliance on body-part metaphors renders the system highly mnemonic. By recognizing one part of the constellation the stargazer is immediately able to identify the remaining parts based on an existing mental map of the human body. The circumpolar position of a whole-sky constellation yields a highly functional system that facilitates both navigation and time-reckoning in the subarctic. Northern Athabascan astronomy is not only much richer than previously described; it also provides evidence for a completely novel and previously undocumented way of conceptualizing the sky---one that is unique to the subarctic and uniquely adapted to northern cultures. The concept of a large humanoid constellation may be widespread across the entire subarctic and have great antiquity. In addition, the use of cognate body part terms describing asterisms within humanoid constellations is similarly found in Navajo, suggesting a common ancestor from which Northern and Southern Athabascan stellar naming strategies derived.

  15. Pan-Arctic TV Series on Inuit wellness: a northern model of communication for social change?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Rhonda; Morales, Robin; Leavitt, Doreen; Carry, Catherine; Kinnon, Dianne; Rideout, Denise; Clarida, Kath

    2011-06-01

    This paper provides highlights of a utilization-focused evaluation of a collaborative Pan-Arctic Inuit Wellness TV Series that was broadcast live in Alaska and Canada in May 2009. This International Polar Year (IPY) communication and outreach project intended to (1) share information on International Polar Year research progress, disseminate findings and explore questions with Inuit in Alaska, Canada and Greenland; (2) provide a forum for Inuit in Alaska, Canada and Greenland to showcase innovative health and wellness projects; (3) ensure Inuit youth and adult engagement throughout; and (4) document and reflect on the overall experience for the purposes of developing and "testing" a participatory communication model. Utilization-focused formative evaluation of the project, with a focus on overall objectives, key messages and lessons learned to facilitate program improvement. Participant observation, surveys, key informant interviews, document review and website tracking. Promising community programs related to 3 themes - men's wellness, maternity care and youth resilience - in diverse circumpolar regions were highlighted, as were current and stillevolving findings from ongoing Arctic research. Multiple media methods were used to effectively deliver and receive key messages determined by both community and academic experts. Local capacity and new regional networks were strengthened. Evidence-based resources for health education and community action were archived in digital formats (websites and DVDs), increasing accessibility to otherwise isolated individuals and remote communities. The Pan-Arctic Inuit Wellness TV Series was an innovative, multi-dimensional communication project that raised both interest and awareness about complex health conditions in the North and stimulated community dialogue and potential for increased collaborative action. Consistent with a communication for social change approach, the project created new networks, increased motivation to act

  16. Marine debris in five national parks in Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Polasek, L; Bering, J; Kim, H; Neitlich, P; Pister, B; Terwilliger, M; Nicolato, K; Turner, C; Jones, T

    2017-04-15

    Marine debris is a management issue with ecological and recreational impacts for agencies, especially on remote beaches not accessible by road. This project was implemented to remove and document marine debris from five coastal National Park Service units in Alaska. Approximately 80km of coastline were cleaned with over 10,000kg of debris collected. Marine debris was found at all 28 beaches surveyed. Hard plastics were found on every beach and foam was found at every beach except one. Rope/netting was the next most commonly found category, present at 23 beaches. Overall, plastic contributed to 60% of the total weight of debris. Rope/netting (14.6%) was a greater proportion of the weight from all beaches than foam (13.3%). Non-ferrous metal contributed the smallest amount of debris by weight (1.7%). The work forms a reference condition dataset of debris surveyed in the Western Arctic and the Gulf of Alaska within one season. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  17. Human disturbances of denning polar bears in Alaska

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Amstrup, S.C. (Alaska Fish and Wildlife Research Center, Anchorage, AK (United States))

    1993-09-01

    Polar bears (Ursus maritimus) give birth in dens of snow and ice. The altricial neonates cannot leave the den for >2 months post-partum and are potentially vulnerable to disturbances near dens. The coastal plain (1002) area of Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) lies in a region of known polar bear denning and also may contain >9 billion barrels of recoverable oil. Polar bears in dens could be affected in many ways by hydrocarbon development. The distribution of dens on ANWR was documented between 1981 and 1992 and responses of bears in dens to various anthropogenic disturbances were observed. Of 44 dens located by radiotelemetry on the mainland coast of Alaska and Canada, 20 (45%) were on ANWR and 15 (34%) were within the 1002 area. Thus, development of ANWR will increase the potential that denning polar bears are disturbed by human activities. However, perturbations resulting from capture, marking, and radiotracking maternal bears did not affect litter sizes or stature of cubs produced. Likewise, 10 of 12 denned polar bears tolerated exposure to exceptional levels of activity. This tolerance and the fact that investment in the denning effort increases through the winter indicated that spatial and temporal restrictions on developments could prevent the potential for many disruptions of denned bears from being realized. 16 refs., 1 fig., 2 tabs.

  18. Human disturbances of denning polar bears in Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Amstrup, S.C.

    1993-01-01

    Polar bears (Ursus maritimus) give birth in dens of snow and ice. The altricial neonates cannot leave the den for >2 months post-partum and are potentially vulnerable to disturbances near dens. The coastal plain (1002) area of Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) lies in a region of known polar bear denning and also may contain >9 billion barrels of recoverable oil. Polar bears in dens could be affected in many ways by hydrocarbon development. The distribution of dens on ANWR was documented between 1981 and 1992 and responses of bears in dens to various anthropogenic disturbances were observed. Of 44 dens located by radiotelemetry on the mainland coast of Alaska and Canada, 20 (45%) were on ANWR and 15 (34%) were within the 1002 area. Thus, development of ANWR will increase the potential that denning polar bears are disturbed by human activities. However, perturbations resulting from capture, marking, and radiotracking maternal bears did not affect litter sizes or stature of cubs produced. Likewise, 10 of 12 denned polar bears tolerated exposure to exceptional levels of activity. This tolerance and the fact that investment in the denning effort increases through the winter indicated that spatial and temporal restrictions on developments could prevent the potential for many disruptions of denned bears from being realized. 16 refs., 1 fig., 2 tabs

  19. Bryophytes from Simeonof Island in the Shumagin Islands, southwestern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schofield, W.B.; Talbot, S. S.; Talbot, S.L.

    2004-01-01

    Simeonof Island is located south of the Alaska Peninsula in the hyperoceanic sector of the middle boreal subzone. We examined the bryoflora of Simeonof Island to determine species composition in an area where no previous collections had been reported. This field study was conducted in sites selected to represent the spectrum of environmental variation within Simeonof Island. Data were analyzed using published reports to compare bryophyte distribution patterns at three levels, the Northern Hemisphere, North America, and Alaska. A total of 271 bryophytes were identified: 202 mosses and 69 liverworts. The annotated list of species for Simeonof Island expands the known range for many species and fills distribution gaps within Hulte??n's Western Pacific Coast district. Maps and notes on the distribution of 14 significant distribution records are presented. Compared with bryophyte distribution in the Northern Hemisphere, the bryoflora of Simeonof Island primarily includes taxa of boreal (55%), temperate (20%), arctic (10%), and cosmopolitan (8%) distribution; 6% of the moss flora are western North America endemics. A description of the bryophytes present in the vegetation and habitat types is provided as is a quantitative analysis of the most frequently occurring bryophytes in crowberry heath.

  20. Landscape Level Analyses of Vegetation Cover in Northern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Botting, T.; Hollister, R. D.

    2013-12-01

    Many International Tundra Experiment (ITEX) studies have been conducted to identify vegetation changes due to warming. However, knowledge gaps remain. For example, most of these studies are conducted at the plot level, not the landscape level, potentially masking larger scale impacts of climate change. An Arctic Systems Science (ARCSS) grid was established in Atqasuk, Alaska and Barrow, Alaska in the mid 1990's. In 2010, approximately 100 untreated vegetation plots were implemented at each grid site. These vegetation plots are 1 meter squared, spaced 100 meters apart, and span 1 kilometer squared. Each vegetation plot represents 100 square meters along the grid. This project will focus on how vegetation cover has changed at the landscape level, using the point frame method, from 2010 to 2013. Preliminary data analysis indicates that in Atqasuk, graminoids, deciduous shrubs, and evergreen shrubs show increased cover, while little change has occurred with bryophytes, forbs and lichens. In Barrow, graminoids, lichens and forbs have shown an increase in cover, while little change has occurred with bryophytes and deciduous shrubs. At both sites, graminoids represent the greatest increase in cover of all growth forms analyzed. This study will be the foundation for later work, with the purpose of predicting what ARCSS grid vegetation community compositions will be in the future. These expectations will be based on anticipated warming data from ITEX passively warmed vegetation plots. This will be the first time that ITEX vegetation warming research is applied to landscape level research in Barrow and Atqasuk.

  1. Impacts of a Warming Arctic. Arctic Climate Impact Assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hassol, S.J.; Zijderveld, J.; Moll, H.

    2004-01-01

    The Arctic is warming much more rapidly than previously known, at nearly twice the rate as the rest of the globe, and increasing greenhouse gases from human activities are projected to make it warmer still, according to an unprecedented four-year scientific study of the region conducted by an international team of 300 scientists. At least half the summer sea ice in the Arctic is projected to melt by the end of this century, along with a significant portion of the Greenland Ice Sheet, as the region is projected to warm an additional 4-7C by the year 2100. These changes will have major global impacts, such as contributing to global sea-level rise and intensifying global warming, according to the final report of the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment (ACIA). The assessment was commissioned by the Arctic Council (a ministerial intergovernmental forum comprised of the eight Arctic countries and six Indigenous Peoples organizations) and the International Arctic Science Committee (an international scientific organization appointed by 18 national academies of science). The assessment's projections are based on a moderate estimate of future emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases, and incorporate results from five major global climate models used by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) [nl

  2. Rolling the dice on the ice; New modes for underway data acquisition in the Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coakley, B.; Dove, D.

    2012-12-01

    Exploration of the Arctic Ocean has always depended on the sea ice. It has been a platform supporting drifting ice stations and an obstacle to be over come by force (icebreakers) or finesse (US Navy fast attack submarines). Reduced seasonal sea ice cover has made it possible to work more freely in the peripheral Arctic Ocean, opening relatively unknown regions to scientific exploration and study. In September 2011, the RV Marcus G. Langseth set sail from Dutch Harbor, Alaska bound through Bering Strait for the Arctic Ocean. This was the first Arctic Ocean trip for MGG data acquisition by a US academic research vessel since 1994, when the RV Maurice Ewing collected a 2-D MCS profile across the Bering Shelf, through the Strait and along the Beaufort Shelf, stopping near Barrow, Alaska. RV Langseth arrived on the mid-Chukchi shelf and streamed gear just south of the "Crackerjack" well, drilled by Shell Exploration in the late eighties. The ship sailed north, crossing the "Popcorn" well and then set a course to the NW, setting the baseline for the survey parallel to the Beaufort Shelf edge. Sailing through almost entirely ice-free waters, approximately 5300 km of multi-channel seismic reflection data were acquired on a NW-SE oriented grid, which straddled the transition from Chukchi Shelf to the Chukchi Borderland. It would not have been possible for Langseth, which is not ice reinforced, to acquire these data prior to 2007. The dramatic expansion of late Summer open water in the western Arctic Ocean made it possible to use this ship effectively across a broad swath of the shelf and the periphery of the deep central basin. While the survey region was almost entirely ice free during this cruise, which straddled the ice minimum for 2011, it was not possible to predict this a priori, despite expectations set by the previous five years of ice edge retreat. For this reason, the Canadian Ice Service was engaged to provide interpreted ice imagery, multiple times per day

  3. Convective forcing of mercury and ozone in the Arctic boundary layer induced by leads in sea ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Christopher W.; Obrist, Daniel; Steffen, Alexandra; Staebler, Ralf M.; Douglas, Thomas A.; Richter, Andreas; Nghiem, Son V.

    2014-02-01

    The ongoing regime shift of Arctic sea ice from perennial to seasonal ice is associated with more dynamic patterns of opening and closing sea-ice leads (large transient channels of open water in the ice), which may affect atmospheric and biogeochemical cycles in the Arctic. Mercury and ozone are rapidly removed from the atmospheric boundary layer during depletion events in the Arctic, caused by destruction of ozone along with oxidation of gaseous elemental mercury (Hg(0)) to oxidized mercury (Hg(II)) in the atmosphere and its subsequent deposition to snow and ice. Ozone depletion events can change the oxidative capacity of the air by affecting atmospheric hydroxyl radical chemistry, whereas atmospheric mercury depletion events can increase the deposition of mercury to the Arctic, some of which can enter ecosystems during snowmelt. Here we present near-surface measurements of atmospheric mercury and ozone from two Arctic field campaigns near Barrow, Alaska. We find that coastal depletion events are directly linked to sea-ice dynamics. A consolidated ice cover facilitates the depletion of Hg(0) and ozone, but these immediately recover to near-background concentrations in the upwind presence of open sea-ice leads. We attribute the rapid recoveries of Hg(0) and ozone to lead-initiated shallow convection in the stable Arctic boundary layer, which mixes Hg(0) and ozone from undepleted air masses aloft. This convective forcing provides additional Hg(0) to the surface layer at a time of active depletion chemistry, where it is subject to renewed oxidation. Future work will need to establish the degree to which large-scale changes in sea-ice dynamics across the Arctic alter ozone chemistry and mercury deposition in fragile Arctic ecosystems.

  4. Convective forcing of mercury and ozone in the Arctic boundary layer induced by leads in sea ice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Christopher W; Obrist, Daniel; Steffen, Alexandra; Staebler, Ralf M; Douglas, Thomas A; Richter, Andreas; Nghiem, Son V

    2014-02-06

    The ongoing regime shift of Arctic sea ice from perennial to seasonal ice is associated with more dynamic patterns of opening and closing sea-ice leads (large transient channels of open water in the ice), which may affect atmospheric and biogeochemical cycles in the Arctic. Mercury and ozone are rapidly removed from the atmospheric boundary layer during depletion events in the Arctic, caused by destruction of ozone along with oxidation of gaseous elemental mercury (Hg(0)) to oxidized mercury (Hg(II)) in the atmosphere and its subsequent deposition to snow and ice. Ozone depletion events can change the oxidative capacity of the air by affecting atmospheric hydroxyl radical chemistry, whereas atmospheric mercury depletion events can increase the deposition of mercury to the Arctic, some of which can enter ecosystems during snowmelt. Here we present near-surface measurements of atmospheric mercury and ozone from two Arctic field campaigns near Barrow, Alaska. We find that coastal depletion events are directly linked to sea-ice dynamics. A consolidated ice cover facilitates the depletion of Hg(0) and ozone, but these immediately recover to near-background concentrations in the upwind presence of open sea-ice leads. We attribute the rapid recoveries of Hg(0) and ozone to lead-initiated shallow convection in the stable Arctic boundary layer, which mixes Hg(0) and ozone from undepleted air masses aloft. This convective forcing provides additional Hg(0) to the surface layer at a time of active depletion chemistry, where it is subject to renewed oxidation. Future work will need to establish the degree to which large-scale changes in sea-ice dynamics across the Arctic alter ozone chemistry and mercury deposition in fragile Arctic ecosystems.

  5. Microbial population and activity responses to fertilization of petroleum hydrocarbon contaminated soils near Barrow, Alaska

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Braddock, J. F.; Walworth, J. L.

    1999-01-01

    The bioremediation treatment strategy in the Arctic was tested, along with an examination of the effect of fertilization on microbial populations and activity at a pad of coarse sand that once supported fuel storage tanks near Barrow, Alaska. The effect of fertilization on the persistence of aliphatic versus aromatic hydrocarbons was also observed. Results of adding fertilizer showed a decline of soil pH and soil-water potential. The fertilizer significantly increased soil respiration potentials, but not the population of gasoline and diesel degrading microorganisms. Hydrocarbon concentrations were shown to decrease during the experiment, probably due to volatilization of the aromatic hydrocarbons from the surface soil and nutrient-stimulated biotic degradation processes in the subsurface soil. Linear alkanes appeared to have been more strongly affected than branched alkanes; this also suggest the importance of biological processes even at this cold Arctic site. 2 refs

  6. Development of arctic wind technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Holttinen, H.; Marjaniemi, M.; Antikainen, P. [VTT Energy, Espoo (Finland)

    1998-10-01

    The climatic conditions of Lapland set special technical requirements for wind power production. The most difficult problem regarding wind power production in arctic regions is the build-up of hard and rime ice on structures of the machine

  7. SCICEX: Submarine Arctic Science Program

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The Submarine Arctic Science Program, SCICEX, is a federal interagency collaboration among the operational Navy, research agencies, and the marine research community...

  8. Acquatorialities of the Arctic Region

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Harste, Gorm

    2013-01-01

    In order to describe the Arctic system I propose using a concept functionally equivalent to territoriality, namely aquatoriality. Whether communicating about territoriality or aquatoriality, concepts and delimitations are both contingent to forms of communication systems. I will distinguish between...

  9. Hydrological Measurements in Several Streams During Breakup in the National Petroleum Reserve - Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vas, D. A.; Toniolo, H. A.; Kemnitz, R.; Brailey, D.; Lamb, E. K.

    2011-12-01

    The National Petroleum Reserve - Alaska (NPR - A) expands from the North side of the Brooks Range to the Arctic Ocean over 23.5 million acres. There is a renewed interest in opening NPR -A for oil and gas exploration and hydrological data is critical to the development of pipelines, roads, and bridges. A set of hydraulic measurements, which includes discharge measurements using Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler (ADCP), water slope, and suspended sediment sampling during breakup were conducted on Otuk Creek, Seabee Creek, Prince Creek, Ikpikpuk River, Judy Creek, Fish Creek, and Ublutuoch River in the NPR - A region. We will present preliminary results, grouped by stream characteristics.

  10. Vegetation Change in Interior Alaska Over the Last Four Decades

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huhman, H.; Dewitz, J.; Cristobal, J.; Prakash, A.

    2017-12-01

    The Arctic has become a generally warmer place over the past decades leading to earlier snowmelt, permafrost degradation and changing plant communities. One area in particular, vegetation change, is responding relatively rapidly to climate change, impacting the surrounding environment with changes to forest fire regime, forest type, forest resiliency, habitat availability for subsistence flora and fauna, hydrology, among others. To quantify changes in vegetation in the interior Alaska boreal forest over the last four decades, this study uses the National Land Cover Database (NLCD) decision-tree based classification methods, using both C5 and ERDAS Imagine software, to classify Landsat Surface Reflectance Images into the following NLCD-consistent vegetation classes: planted, herbaceous, shrubland, and forest (deciduous, evergreen and mixed). The results of this process are a total of four vegetation cover maps, that are freely accessible to the public, one for each decade in the 1980's, 1990's, 2000's, and a current map for 2017. These maps focus on Fairbanks, Alaska and the surrounding area covering approximately 36,140 square miles. The maps are validated with over 4,000 ground truth points collected through organizations such as the Landfire Project and the Long Term Ecological Research Network, as well as vegetation and soil spectra collected from the study area concurrent with the Landsat satellite over-passes with a Spectral Evolution PSR+ 3500 spectro-radiometer (0.35 - 2.5 μm). We anticipate these maps to be viewed by a wide user-community and may aid in preparing the residents of Alaska for changes in their subsistence food sources and will contribute to the scientific community in understanding the variety of changes that can occur in response to changing vegetation.

  11. InSAR detects increase in surface subsidence caused by an Arctic tundra fire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Lin; Jafarov, Elchin E.; Schaefer, Kevin M.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Zebker, Howard A.; Williams, Christopher A.; Rogan, John; Zhang, Tingjun

    2014-01-01

    Wildfire is a major disturbance in the Arctic tundra and boreal forests, having a significant impact on soil hydrology, carbon cycling, and permafrost dynamics. This study explores the use of the microwave Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) technique to map and quantify ground surface subsidence caused by the Anaktuvuk River fire on the North Slope of Alaska. We detected an increase of up to 8 cm of thaw-season ground subsidence after the fire, which is due to a combination of thickened active layer and permafrost thaw subsidence. Our results illustrate the effectiveness and potential of using InSAR to quantify fire impacts on the Arctic tundra, especially in regions underlain by ice-rich permafrost. Our study also suggests that surface subsidence is a more comprehensive indicator of fire impacts on ice-rich permafrost terrain than changes in active layer thickness alone.

  12. InSAR detects increase in surface subsidence caused by an Arctic tundra fire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Lin; Jafarov, Elchin E.; Schaefer, Kevin M.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Zebker, Howard A.; Williams, Christopher A.; Rogan, John; Zhang, Tingjun

    2014-06-01

    Wildfire is a major disturbance in the Arctic tundra and boreal forests, having a significant impact on soil hydrology, carbon cycling, and permafrost dynamics. This study explores the use of the microwave Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) technique to map and quantify ground surface subsidence caused by the Anaktuvuk River fire on the North Slope of Alaska. We detected an increase of up to 8 cm of thaw-season ground subsidence after the fire, which is due to a combination of thickened active layer and permafrost thaw subsidence. Our results illustrate the effectiveness and potential of using InSAR to quantify fire impacts on the Arctic tundra, especially in regions underlain by ice-rich permafrost. Our study also suggests that surface subsidence is a more comprehensive indicator of fire impacts on ice-rich permafrost terrain than changes in active layer thickness alone.

  13. ARCTAS-A ground-based observational campaign and meteorological context, interior Alaska, April 2008

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atkinson, D. E.; Sassen, K.; Hayashi, M.; Cahill, C. F.; Shaw, G.; Harrigan, D.; Fuelberg, H.

    2011-06-01

    Arctic aerosol loading in interior Alaska displays a strong seasonality, with pristine conditions generally prevailing during winter months and increasing frequency of midlatitude air intrusions occurring in spring. By summer, local aerosol sources, like boreal forest fire smoke, may come into prominence. Long term aerosol research from the University of Alaska Fairbanks indicates that the period around April typically marks the beginning of the retreat of the Polar Front, opening the free exchange of midlatitude air. In April 2008 the NASA ARCTAS field campaign was conducted, supported in Fairbanks by comprehensive polarization (0.693 μm) lidar, surface and balloon-borne aerosol measurements, and synoptic weather analyzes. The data provided information on the vertical distribution and type of aerosol, the size distributions and chemical nature of the surface aerosol, as well as the large scale view of aerosol transport conditions to Alaska. We found evidence to suggest four major aerosol loading events in the 25 March-30 April 2008 timeframe: a typical Arctic haze event, several days of extremely clear conditions, rapid onset of a period dominated by Asian dust with some smoke, and a period dominated by Asian smoke. A focused case study analysis conducted on 19 April 2008 using a balloon-borne optical particle counter suggested that, on this day, the majority of the suspended particulate matter consisted of Asian dust although a contribution from Asian smoke cannot be ruled out on the basis of backtrack analysis. In the last week of April concentrations gradually decreased as synoptic conditions shifted away from favoring transport to Alaska.

  14. Arctic Tundra Greening and Browning at Circumpolar and Regional Scales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epstein, H. E.; Bhatt, U. S.; Walker, D. A.; Raynolds, M. K.; Yang, X.

    2017-12-01

    Remote sensing data have historically been used to assess the dynamics of arctic tundra vegetation. Until recently the scientific literature has largely described the "greening" of the Arctic; from a remote sensing perspective, an increase in the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), or a similar satellite-based vegetation index. Vegetation increases have been heterogeneous throughout the Arctic, and were reported to be up to 25% in certain areas over a 30-year timespan. However, more recently, arctic tundra vegetation dynamics have gotten more complex, with observations of more widespread tundra "browning" being reported. We used a combination of remote sensing data, including the Global Inventory Monitoring and Modeling System (GIMMS), as well as higher spatial resolution Landsat data, to evaluate the spatio-temporal patterns of arctic tundra vegetation dynamics (greening and browning) at circumpolar and regional scales over the past 3-4 decades. At the circumpolar scale, we focus on the spatial heterogeneity (by tundra subzone and continent) of tundra browning over the past 5-15 years, followed by a more recent recovery (greening since 2015). Landsat time series allow us to evaluate the landscape-scale heterogeneity of tundra greening and browning for northern Alaska and the Yamal Peninsula in northwestern Siberia, Russia. Multi-dataset analyses reveal that tundra greening and browning (i.e. increases or decreases in the NDVI respectively) are generated by different sets of processes. Tundra greening is largely a result of either climate warming, lengthening of the growing season, or responses to disturbances, such as fires, landslides, and freeze-thaw processes. Browning on the other hand tends to be more event-driven, such as the shorter-term decline in vegetation due to fire, insect defoliation, consumption by larger herbivores, or extreme weather events (e.g. winter warming or early summer frost damage). Browning can also be caused by local or

  15. Rapid disturbances in Arctic permafrost regions (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grosse, G.; Romanovsky, V. E.; Arp, C. D.; Jones, B. M.

    2013-12-01

    Permafrost thaw is often perceived as a slow process dominated by press disturbances such as gradual active layer thickening. However, various pulse disturbances such as thermokarst formation can substantially increase the rate of permafrost thaw and result in rapid landscape change on sub-decadal to decadal time scales. Other disturbances associated with permafrost thaw are even more dynamic and unfold on sub-annual timescales, such as catastrophic thermokarst lake drainage. The diversity of processes results in complex feedbacks with soil carbon pools, biogeochemical cycles, hydrology, and flora and fauna, and requires a differentiated approach when quantifying how these ecosystem componentsare affected,how vulnerablethey are to rapid change, and what regional to global scale impacts result. Here we show quantitative measurements for three examples of rapid pulse disturbances in permafrost regions as observed with remote sensing data time series: The formation of a mega thaw slump (>50 ha) in syngenetic permafrost in Siberia, the formation of new thermokarst ponds in ice-rich permafrost regions in Alaska and Siberia, and the drainage of thermokarst lakes along a gradient of permafrost extent in Western Alaska. The surprising setting and unabated growth of the mega thaw slump during the last 40 years indicates that limited information on panarctic ground ice distribution, abundance, and vulnerability remains a key gap for reliable projections of thermokarst and thermo-erosion impacts, and that the natural limits on the growth and size of thaw slumps are still poorly understood. Observed thermokarst pond formation and expansion in our study regions was closely tied to ice-rich permafrost terrain, such as syngenetic Yedoma uplands, but was also found in old drained thermokarst lake basins with epigenetic permafrost and shallow drained thermokarst lake basins whose ground ice had not been depleted by the prior lake phase. The very different substrates in which new

  16. Rural Alaska Science and Mathematics Network

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Brunk, Blanche R

    2005-01-01

    ...), are awarded to Alaska Native students. Academic preparation, lack of exposure to science careers in rural Alaska, and little connection between western science and Native traditional life have combined to impede Native students' interest...

  17. Life cycle costs for Alaska bridges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-08-01

    A study was implemented to assist the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (ADOT&PF) with life cycle costs for : the Alaska Highway Bridge Inventory. The study consisted of two parts. Part 1 involved working with regional offices...

  18. Multi decadal glacier area fluctuations in Pan-Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mernild, S. H.; Malmros, J. K.

    2012-10-01

    The shrinking of land-terminating glaciers and ice caps (GIC) has been documented in high-latitude regions, even though repeat observations upon which to base such studies have been limited in space. Here, we present a new record of satellite-derived area changes for 321 land-terminating GIC throughout Pan-Arctic and for the W. Canada and W. US, with focus on the period from mid-1980s to late-2000s/2011 (the last ca. 25 yr). The mean shrinking rate was -0.06±0.01 km2 yr-1 during a period with climate warming. Most of the observed GIC shrank in area, more so than previously believed: while only 8% advanced. The analysis indicates that the observed GIC have lost an arithmetic average of one-fifth of their area since the mid-1980s (equal to a shrinking rate of ca. -1% yr-1), with the highest rate of loss of -40±4% (-1.7 % yr-1) in Alaska, and the lowest rate of loss of -12±3% (-0.5 % yr-1) in Arctic Russia.

  19. Interaction webs in arctic ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schmidt, Niels M.; Hardwick, Bess; Gilg, Olivier

    2017-01-01

    How species interact modulate their dynamics, their response to environmental change, and ultimately the functioning and stability of entire communities. Work conducted at Zackenberg, Northeast Greenland, has changed our view on how networks of arctic biotic interactions are structured, how they ...... that the combination of long-term, ecosystem-based monitoring, and targeted research projects offers the most fruitful basis for understanding and predicting the future of arctic ecosystems....

  20. Public Perceptions of Arctic Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, L.

    2014-12-01

    What does the general US public know, or think they know, about Arctic change? Two broad nationwide surveys in 2006 and 2010 addressed this topic in general terms, before and after the International Polar Year (IPY). Since then a series of representative national or statewide surveys have carried this research farther. The new surveys employ specific questions that assess public knowledge of basic Arctic facts, along with perceptions about the possible consequences of future Arctic change. Majorities know that late-summer Arctic sea ice area has declined compared with 30 years ago, although substantial minorities -- lately increasing -- believe instead that it has now recovered to historical levels. Majorities also believe that, if the Arctic warms in the future, this will have major effects on the weather where they live. Their expectation of local impacts from far-away changes suggests a degree of global thinking. On the other hand, most respondents do poorly when asked whether melting Arctic sea ice, melting Greenland/Antarctic land ice, or melting Himalayan glaciers could have more effect on sea level. Only 30% knew or guessed the right answer to this question. Similarly, only 33% answered correctly on a simple geography quiz: whether the North Pole could best be described as ice a few feet or yards thick floating over a deep ocean, ice more than a mile thick over land, or a rocky, mountainous landscape. Close analysis of response patterns suggests that people often construct Arctic "knowledge" on items such as sea ice increase/decrease from their more general ideology or worldview, such as their belief (or doubt) that anthropogenic climate change is real. When ideology or worldviews provide no guidance, as on the North Pole or sealevel questions, the proportion of accurate answers is no better than chance. These results show at least casual public awareness and interest in Arctic change, unfortunately not well grounded in knowledge. Knowledge problems seen on

  1. The Circumpolar Arctic vegetation map

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Donald A.; Raynolds, Martha K.; Daniels, F.J.A.; Einarsson, E.; Elvebakk, A.; Gould, W.A.; Katenin, A.E.; Kholod, S.S.; Markon, C.J.; Melnikov, E.S.; Moskalenko, N.G.; Talbot, S. S.; Yurtsev, B.A.; Bliss, L.C.; Edlund, S.A.; Zoltai, S.C.; Wilhelm, M.; Bay, C.; Gudjonsson, G.; Ananjeva, G.V.; Drozdov, D.S.; Konchenko, L.A.; Korostelev, Y.V.; Ponomareva, O.E.; Matveyeva, N.V.; Safranova, I.N.; Shelkunova, R.; Polezhaev, A.N.; Johansen, B.E.; Maier, H.A.; Murray, D.F.; Fleming, Michael D.; Trahan, N.G.; Charron, T.M.; Lauritzen, S.M.; Vairin, B.A.

    2005-01-01

    Question: What are the major vegetation units in the Arctic, what is their composition, and how are they distributed among major bioclimate subzones and countries? Location: The Arctic tundra region, north of the tree line. Methods: A photo-interpretive approach was used to delineate the vegetation onto an Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) base image. Mapping experts within nine Arctic regions prepared draft maps using geographic information technology (ArcInfo) of their portion of the Arctic, and these were later synthesized to make the final map. Area analysis of the map was done according to bioclimate subzones, and country. The integrated mapping procedures resulted in other maps of vegetation, topography, soils, landscapes, lake cover, substrate pH, and above-ground biomass. Results: The final map was published at 1:7 500 000 scale map. Within the Arctic (total area = 7.11 x 106 km 2), about 5.05 ?? 106 km2 is vegetated. The remainder is ice covered. The map legend generally portrays the zonal vegetation within each map polygon. About 26% of the vegetated area is erect shrublands, 18% peaty graminoid tundras, 13% mountain complexes, 12% barrens, 11% mineral graminoid tundras, 11% prostrate-shrub tundras, and 7% wetlands. Canada has by far the most terrain in the High Arctic mostly associated with abundant barren types and prostrate dwarf-shrub tundra, whereas Russia has the largest area in the Low Arctic, predominantly low-shrub tundra. Conclusions: The CAVM is the first vegetation map of an entire global biome at a comparable resolution. The consistent treatment of the vegetation across the circumpolar Arctic, abundant ancillary material, and digital database should promote the application to numerous land-use, and climate-change applications and will make updating the map relatively easy. ?? IAVS; Opulus Press.

  2. Circulation in the Arctic Ocean

    OpenAIRE

    Jones, E. Peter

    2001-01-01

    Much information on processes and circulation within the Arctic Ocean has emerged from measurements made on icebreaker expeditions during the past decade. This article offers a perspective based on these measurements, summarizing new ideas regarding how water masses are formed and how they circulate. Best understood at present is the circulation of the Atlantic Layer and mid-depth waters, to depths of about 1700 m, which move in cyclonic gyres in the four major basins of the Arctic Ocean. New...

  3. Fate of chlorinated fatty acids in migrating sockeye salmon and their transfer to arctic grayling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mu, Huiling; Ewald, G.; Nilsson, E.

    2004-01-01

    To investigate whether biotransport constitutes an entry route into pristine ecosystems for nonpersistent, nonvolatile xenobiotic compounds, extractable organically bound halogen in sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) from Alaska was determined before and after spawning migration. The major organ...... originating from the salmon, demonstrating a long-range transport route for this type of pollutants to pristine areas....... to that of the unchlorinated fatty acids. Lipids of the Arctic grayling (Thymallus arcticus), a fish resident to the spawning lake of the salmon, contained higher concentrations of chlorinated fatty acids than grayling in a lake without migratory salmon. This may reflect a food-chain transfer of the chlorinated fatty acids...

  4. Chapter 9: Oil and gas resource potential north of the Arctic Circle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gautier, D.L.; Bird, K.J.; Charpentier, R.R.; Grantz, A.; Houseknecht, D.W.; Klett, T.R.; Moore, T.E.; Pitman, Janet K.; Schenk, C.J.; Schuenemeyer, J.H.; Sorensen, K.; Tennyson, Marilyn E.; Valin, Z.C.; Wandrey, C.J.

    2011-01-01

    The US Geological Survey recently assessed the potential for undiscovered conventional petroleumin the Arctic. Using a new map compilation of sedimentary elements, the area north of the Arctic Circle was subdivided into 70 assessment units, 48 of which were quantitatively assessed. The Circum-Arctic Resource Appraisal (CARA) was a geologically based, probabilistic study that relied mainly on burial history analysis and analogue modelling to estimate sizes and numbers of undiscovered oil and gas accumulations. The results of the CARA suggest the Arctic is gas-prone with an estimated 770-2990 trillion cubic feet of undiscovered conventional natural gas, most of which is in Russian territory. On an energy-equivalent basis, the quantity of natural gas ismore than three times the quantity of oil and the largest undiscovered gas eld is expected to be about 10 times the size of the largest undiscovered oil eld. In addition to gas, the gas accumulationsmay contain an estimated 39 billion barrels of liquids. The South Kara Sea is themost prospective gas assessment unit, but giant gas elds containingmore than 6 trillion cubic feet of recoverable gas are possible at a 50%chance in 10 assessment units. Sixty per cent of the estimated undiscovered oil resource is in just six assessment units, of which the Alaska Platform, with 31%of the resource, is the most prospective. Overall, the Arctic is estimated to contain between 44 and 157 billion barrels of recoverable oil. Billion barrel oil elds are possible at a 50%chance in seven assessment units.Undiscovered oil resources could be signicant to the Arctic nations, but are probably not sufcient to shift the world oil balance away from the Middle East. ?? 2011 The Geological Society of London.

  5. The role of DOM in nitrogen processing in streams across arctic regions affected by fire

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez-Cardona, B.; Schade, J. D.; Holmes, R. M.; Natali, S.; Mann, P. J.; Wymore, A.; Coble, A. A.; Prokishkin, A. S.; Zito, P.; Podgorski, D. C.; Spencer, R. G.; McDowell, W. H.

    2017-12-01

    In stream ecosystems, inputs of dissolved organic carbon (DOC) have a strong influence on nitrogen (N) processing. Previous studies have demonstrated that increases in DOC concentrations can promote greater N removal in many stream ecosystems. Most of what we know about C and N coupling comes from studies of temperate streams; less is known about this relationship in the Arctic. Streams in Arctic ecosystems are facing rapid changes in climate and disturbance regimes, in particular increasing fire frequencies that are likely to alter biogeochemical cycles. Although fires can lead to increases in NO3 concentrations in streams, the effects of fire on DOC (concentration and composition) have been difficult to generalize. We studied the relationships between DOC and N in two locations; the Central Siberian Plateau, Russia and the Yukon-Kuskokwim (YK) River Delta, Alaska. Streams in both regions show increases in NO3 concentrations after fire, while DOC concentrations decrease in Siberia but increase in streams within the YK-Delta. These patterns in DOC and NO3 create a gradient in DOC and nutrient concentrations, allowing us to study this coupling in a wider Pan-Arctic scope. In order to assess the role of DOC in Arctic N processing, we conducted NO3 and NH4 additions to stream microcosms at the Alaskan site as well as whole-stream additions in Siberia. We hypothesized that nutrient uptake would be high in older burn sites of Siberia and recently burned sites in the YK-Delta, due to greater DOC concentrations and availability. Our results suggest that nitrogen dynamics in the Alaskan sites is strongly responsive to C availability, but is less so in Siberian sites. The potential impacts of permafrost thawing and fires on DOM and nutrient dynamics thus appear to not be consistent across the Arctic suggesting that different regions of the Arctic have unique biogeochemical controls.

  6. Global Model Comparison with NOAA Observed Surface Ozone to Understand Transport in the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petropavlovskikh, I. V.; McClure-Begley, A.; Tummon, F.; Tilmes, S.; Yudina, A.; Crepinsek, S.; Uttal, T.

    2016-12-01

    The Arctic region is rapidly gaining interest and support for scientific studies to help understand and characterize the processes, sources, and chemical composition of the Arctic environment. In order to understand the Arctic climate system and the changes that are occurring, it is imperative to know the behavior and impact of atmospheric constituents. As a secondary pollutant which impacts the oxidation capacity and radiative forcing of the atmosphere, ozone is an imperative species to characterize. Global atmospheric models help to confirm and understand the influence of long-distance transport on local ozone conditions. This analysis highlights the winter season when ozone conditions are not being driven by photochemical influence, and transport is the prevalent means of ozone variation. In order to ensure adequate representation of ozone conditions and source regions, model comparison verifies the ability of models to represent the behavior of ozone at the surface. Ozone mixing ratios observed from Barrow, Alaska and Summit, Greenland, are critical observations to provide fundamental knowledge of the behavior and trends of ground-level ozone in the Arctic. The observed surface ozone and wind data are compared against two different global climate-chemistry models to assess the ability for models to simulate surface ozone in the arctic region. The CCM SOCOL (Modeling tools for studies of Solar Climate Ozone Links) and Community Earth System Model (CESM1) CAM4-chem are compared to observational measurements. Comparisons between the model and observations are used as the first step in understanding of the long-range transport contribution to ozone variability in the boundary layer of the Arctic environment. An improvement in agreement between observations and chemistry-climate hind cast is found when the model is forced with reanalysis wind conditions.

  7. Wind power in Arctic regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lundsager, P.; Ahm, P.; Madsen, B.; Krogsgaard, P.

    1993-07-01

    Arctic or semi-arctic regions are often endowed with wind resources adequate for a viable production of electricity from the wind. Only limited efforts have so far been spent to introduce and to demonstrate the obvious synergy of combining wind power technology with the problems and needs of electricity generation in Arctic regions. Several factors have created a gap preventing the wind power technology carrying its full role in this context, including a certain lack of familiarity with the technology on the part of the end-users, the local utilities and communities, and a lack of commonly agreed techniques to adapt the same technology for Arctic applications on the part of the manufacturers. This report is part of a project that intends to contribute to bridging this gap. The preliminary results of a survey conducted by the project are included in this report, which is a working document for an international seminar held on June 3-4, 1993, at Risoe National Laboratory, Denmark. Following the seminar a final report will be published. It is intended that the final report will serve as a basis for a sustained, international effort to develop the wind power potential of the Arctic and semi-arctic regions. The project is carried out by a project group formed by Risoe, PA Energy and BTM Consult. The project is sponsored by the Danish Energy Agency of the Danish Ministry of Energy through grant no. ENS-51171/93-0008. (au)

  8. Terrestrial biosphere models underestimate photosynthetic capacity and CO2 assimilation in the Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rogers, Alistair; Serbin, Shawn P; Ely, Kim S; Sloan, Victoria L; Wullschleger, Stan D

    2017-12-01

    Terrestrial biosphere models (TBMs) are highly sensitive to model representation of photosynthesis, in particular the parameters maximum carboxylation rate and maximum electron transport rate at 25°C (V c,max.25 and J max.25 , respectively). Many TBMs do not include representation of Arctic plants, and those that do rely on understanding and parameterization from temperate species. We measured photosynthetic CO 2 response curves and leaf nitrogen (N) content in species representing the dominant vascular plant functional types found on the coastal tundra near Barrow, Alaska. The activation energies associated with the temperature response functions of V c,max and J max were 17% lower than commonly used values. When scaled to 25°C, V c,max.25 and J max.25 were two- to five-fold higher than the values used to parameterize current TBMs. This high photosynthetic capacity was attributable to a high leaf N content and the high fraction of N invested in Rubisco. Leaf-level modeling demonstrated that current parameterization of TBMs resulted in a two-fold underestimation of the capacity for leaf-level CO 2 assimilation in Arctic vegetation. This study highlights the poor representation of Arctic photosynthesis in TBMs, and provides the critical data necessary to improve our ability to project the response of the Arctic to global environmental change. No claim to original US Government works. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  9. Epidemiology of Bacterial Meningitis in the North American Arctic, 2000–2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gounder, Prabhu P.; Zulz, Tammy; Desai, Shalini; Stenz, Flemming; Rudolph, Karen; Tsang, Raymond; Tyrrell, Gregory J.; Bruce, Michael G.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Objective To determine the incidence of meningitis caused by Haemophilus influenzae, Neisseria meningitidis, and Streptococcus pneumoniae in the North American Arctic during 2000–2010. Methods Surveillance data were obtained from the International Circumpolar Surveillance network. We defined a case of bacterial meningitis caused by H. influenzae, N. meningitidis, or S. pneumoniae as a culture-positive isolate obtained from a normally sterile site in a resident with a meningitis diagnosis. Results The annual incidence/100,000 persons for meningitis caused by H. influenzae, N. meningitidis, and S. pneumoniae among all North American Arctic residents was: 0.6, 0.5, and 1.5, respectively; the meningitis incidence among indigenous persons in Alaska and Canada (indigenous status not recorded in Greenland) for those three bacteria was: 2.1, 0.8, and 2.4, respectively. The percentage of pneumococcal isolates belonging to a 7-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine serotype declined from 2000–2004 to 2005–2010 (31% to 2%, p-value meningitis and serogroup B caused 86% of meningococcal meningitis. Conclusions Compared with all North American Arctic residents, indigenous people suffer disproportionately from bacterial meningitis. Arctic residents could benefit from the development of a H. influenzae serotype a vaccine and implementation of a meningococcal serogroup B vaccine. PMID:25864638

  10. Reduced arctic tundra productivity linked with landform and climate change interactions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lara, Mark J.; Nitze, Ingmar; Grosse, Guido; Martin, Philip; McGuire, A. David

    2018-01-01

    Arctic tundra ecosystems have experienced unprecedented change associated with climate warming over recent decades. Across the Pan-Arctic, vegetation productivity and surface greenness have trended positively over the period of satellite observation. However, since 2011 these trends have slowed considerably, showing signs of browning in many regions. It is unclear what factors are driving this change and which regions/landforms will be most sensitive to future browning. Here we provide evidence linking decadal patterns in arctic greening and browning with regional climate change and local permafrost-driven landscape heterogeneity. We analyzed the spatial variability of decadal-scale trends in surface greenness across the Arctic Coastal Plain of northern Alaska (~60,000 km²) using the Landsat archive (1999–2014), in combination with novel 30 m classifications of polygonal tundra and regional watersheds, finding landscape heterogeneity and regional climate change to be the most important factors controlling historical greenness trends. Browning was linked to increased temperature and precipitation, with the exception of young landforms (developed following lake drainage), which will likely continue to green. Spatiotemporal model forecasting suggests carbon uptake potential to be reduced in response to warmer and/or wetter climatic conditions, potentially increasing the net loss of carbon to the atmosphere, at a greater degree than previously expected.

  11. Body size and condition influence migration timing of juvenile Arctic grayling

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heim, Kurt C.; Wipfli, Mark S.; Whitman, Matthew S.; Seitz, Andrew C.

    2016-01-01

    Freshwater fishes utilising seasonally available habitats within annual migratory circuits time movements out of such habitats with changing hydrology, although individual attributes of fish may also mediate the behavioural response to environmental conditions. We tagged juvenile Arctic grayling in a seasonally flowing stream on the Arctic Coastal Plain in Alaska and recorded migration timing towards overwintering habitat. We examined the relationship between individual migration date, and fork length (FL) and body condition index (BCI) for fish tagged in June, July and August in three separate models. Larger fish migrated earlier; however, only the August model suggested a significant relationship with BCI. In this model, 42% of variability in migration timing was explained by FL and BCI, and fish in better condition were predicted to migrate earlier than those in poor condition. Here, the majority (33%) of variability was captured by FL with an additional 9% attributable to BCI. We also noted strong seasonal trends in BCI reflecting overwinter mass loss and subsequent growth within the study area. These results are interpreted in the context of size and energetic state-specific risks of overwinter starvation and mortality (which can be very high in the Arctic), which may influence individuals at greater risk to extend summer foraging in a risky, yet prey rich, habitat. Our research provides further evidence that heterogeneity among individuals within a population can influence migratory behaviour and identifies potential risks to late season migrants in Arctic beaded stream habitats influenced by climate change and petroleum development.

  12. Epidemiology of bacterial meningitis in the North American Arctic, 2000-2010.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gounder, Prabhu P; Zulz, Tammy; Desai, Shalini; Stenz, Flemming; Rudolph, Karen; Tsang, Raymond; Tyrrell, Gregory J; Bruce, Michael G

    2015-08-01

    To determine the incidence of meningitis caused by Haemophilus influenzae, Neisseria meningitidis, and Streptococcus pneumoniae in the North American Arctic during 2000-2010. Surveillance data were obtained from the International Circumpolar Surveillance network. We defined a case of bacterial meningitis caused by H. influenzae, N. meningitidis, or S. pneumoniae as a culture-positive isolate obtained from a normally sterile site in a resident with a meningitis diagnosis. The annual incidence/100,000 persons for meningitis caused by H. influenzae, N. meningitidis, and S. pneumoniae among all North American Arctic residents was: 0.6, 0.5, and 1.5, respectively; the meningitis incidence among indigenous persons in Alaska and Canada (indigenous status not recorded in Greenland) for those three bacteria was: 2.1, 0.8, and 2.4, respectively. The percentage of pneumococcal isolates belonging to a 7-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine serotype declined from 2000-2004 to 2005-2010 (31%-2%, p-value meningitis and serogroup B caused 86% of meningococcal meningitis. Compared with all North American Arctic residents, indigenous people suffer disproportionately from bacterial meningitis. Arctic residents could benefit from the development of an H. influenzae serotype a vaccine and implementation of a meningococcal serogroup B vaccine. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  13. Preparing culturally responsive teachers of science, technology, engineering, and math using the Geophysical Institute Framework for Professional Development in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berry Bertram, Kathryn

    2011-12-01

    The Geophysical Institute (GI) Framework for Professional Development was designed to prepare culturally responsive teachers of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Professional development programs based on the framework are created for rural Alaskan teachers who instruct diverse classrooms that include indigenous students. This dissertation was written in response to the question, "Under what circumstances is the GI Framework for Professional Development effective in preparing culturally responsive teachers of science, technology, engineering, and math?" Research was conducted on two professional development programs based on the GI Framework: the Arctic Climate Modeling Program (ACMP) and the Science Teacher Education Program (STEP). Both programs were created by backward design to student learning goals aligned with Alaska standards and rooted in principles of indigenous ideology. Both were created with input from Alaska Native cultural knowledge bearers, Arctic scientists, education researchers, school administrators, and master teachers with extensive instructional experience. Both provide integrated instruction reflective of authentic Arctic research practices, and training in diverse methods shown to increase indigenous student STEM engagement. While based on the same framework, these programs were chosen for research because they offer distinctly different training venues for K-12 teachers. STEP offered two-week summer institutes on the UAF campus for more than 175 teachers from 33 Alaska school districts. By contrast, ACMP served 165 teachers from one rural Alaska school district along the Bering Strait. Due to challenges in making professional development opportunities accessible to all teachers in this geographically isolated district, ACMP offered a year-round mix of in-person, long-distance, online, and local training. Discussion centers on a comparison of the strategies used by each program to address GI Framework cornerstones, on

  14. Peatland Carbon Dynamics in Alaska During Past Warm Climates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Z.; Cleary, K.; Massa, C.; Hunt, S. J.; Klein, E. S.; Loisel, J.

    2013-12-01

    Peatlands represent a large belowground carbon (C) pool in the biosphere. However, how peatland C sequestration capacity varies with changes in climate and climate-induced disturbance is still poorly understood and debated. Here we summarize results from Alaskan peatlands to document how peat C accumulation has responded to past warm climate intervals. We find that the greatest C accumulation rates at sites from the Kenai Peninsula to the North Slope occurred during the Holocene thermal maximum (HTM) in the early Holocene. This time period also corresponds with explosive formation and expansion of new peatlands on the landscape across Alaska. In addition, we note that many peatlands that existed during the earlier Holocene on the North Slope have disappeared and are presently covered by mineral soils under tundra or sandy deposits. During the Medieval Climate Anomaly (MCA) around 1000-500 years ago, several peatlands in Alaska show high rates of C accumulation when compared to the period before the MCA during the Neoglacial or the following Little Ice Age period. Altogether, our results indicate that the Alaskan landscape was very different during the last 10,000 years and that peatlands can rapidly accumulate C under warm climatic conditions. We speculate that warmth-stimulated increase in plant production surpasses increase in peat decomposition during the early Holocene, and potentially also during the MCA. Other factors that might have contributed to rapid peat accumulation during the early Holocene include increased summer sunlight, lowered sea levels, and decreased sea-ice cover/duration. Summer insolation was ca. 8% higher than today during the early Holocene due to orbital variations, which likely promoted plant productivity by increasing growing seasons sunlight. Furthermore, lower sea levels and exposed shallow continental shelves in the Beaufort Sea (Arctic Ocean) would have made the present-day Arctic Coastal Plain more continental, with warmer summers

  15. Harvesting morels after wildfire in Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tricia L. Wurtz; Amy L. Wiita; Nancy S. Weber; David. Pilz

    2005-01-01

    Morels are edible, choice wild mushrooms that sometimes fruit prolifically in the years immediately after an area has been burned by wildfire. Wildfires are common in interior Alaska; an average of 708,700 acres burned each year in interior Alaska between 1961 and 2000, and in major fire years, over 2 million acres burned. We discuss Alaska's boreal forest...

  16. Novel wildlife in the Arctic: the influence of changing riparian ecosystems and shrub habitat expansion on snowshoe hares.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tape, Ken D; Christie, Katie; Carroll, Geoff; O'Donnell, Jonathan A

    2016-01-01

    Warming during the 20th century has changed the arctic landscape, including aspects of the hydrology, vegetation, permafrost, and glaciers, but effects on wildlife have been difficult to detect. The primary aim of this study is to examine the physical and biological processes contributing to the expanded riparian habitat and range of snowshoe hares (Lepus americanus) in northern Alaska. We explore linkages between components of the riparian ecosystem in Arctic Alaska since the 1960s, including seasonality of stream flow, air temperature, floodplain shrub habitat, and snowshoe hare distributions. Our analyses show that the peak discharge during spring snowmelt has occurred on average 3.4 days per decade earlier over the last 30 years and has contributed to a longer growing season in floodplain ecosystems. We use empirical correlations between cumulative summer warmth and riparian shrub height to reconstruct annual changes in shrub height from the 1960s to the present. The effects of longer and warmer growing seasons are estimated to have stimulated a 78% increase in the height of riparian shrubs. Earlier spring discharge and the estimated increase in riparian shrub height are consistent with observed riparian shrub expansion in the region. Our browsing measurements show that snowshoe hares require a mean riparian shrub height of at least 1.24-1.36 m, a threshold which our hindcasting indicates was met between 1964 and 1989. This generally coincides with observational evidence we present suggesting that snowshoe hares became established in 1977 or 1978. Warming and expanded shrub habitat is the most plausible reason for recent snowshoe hare establishment in Arctic Alaska. The establishment of snowshoe hares and other shrub herbivores in the Arctic in response to increasing shrub habitat is a contrasting terrestrial counterpart to the decline in marine mammals reliant on decreasing sea ice. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. The Arctic Coastal Erosion Problem

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Frederick, Jennifer M. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Thomas, Matthew Anthony [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Bull, Diana L. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Jones, Craig A. [Integral Consulting Inc., San Francisco, CA (United States); Roberts, Jesse D. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2016-09-01

    Permafrost-dominated coastlines in the Arctic are rapidly disappearing. Arctic coastal erosion rates in the United States have doubled since the middle of the twentieth century and appear to be accelerating. Positive erosion trends have been observed for highly-variable geomorphic conditions across the entire Arctic, suggesting a major (human-timescale) shift in coastal landscape evolution. Unfortunately, irreversible coastal land loss in this region poses a threat to native, industrial, scientific, and military communities. The Arctic coastline is vast, spanning more than 100,000 km across eight nations, ten percent of which is overseen by the United States. Much of area is inaccessible by all-season roads. People and infrastructure, therefore, are commonly located near the coast. The impact of the Arctic coastal erosion problem is widespread. Homes are being lost. Residents are being dispersed and their villages relocated. Shoreline fuel storage and delivery systems are at greater risk. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) operate research facilities along some of the most rapidly eroding sections of coast in the world. The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) is struggling to fortify coastal radar sites, operated to ensure national sovereignty in the air, against the erosion problem. Rapid alterations to the Arctic coastline are facilitated by oceanographic and geomorphic perturbations associated with climate change. Sea ice extent is declining, sea level is rising, sea water temperature is increasing, and permafrost state is changing. The polar orientation of the Arctic exacerbates the magnitude and rate of the environmental forcings that facilitate coastal land area loss. The fundamental mechanics of these processes are understood; their non-linear combination poses an extreme hazard. Tools to accurately predict Arctic coastal erosion do not exist. To obtain an accurate predictive model, a coupling of the influences of

  18. Scientific Infrastructure to Support Atmospheric Science and Aerosol Science for the Department of Energy's Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Programs at Barrow, Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lucero, D. A.; Ivey, M.; Helsel, F.; Hardesty, J.; Dexheimer, D.

    2015-12-01

    Scientific infrastructure to support atmospheric science and aerosol science for the Department of Energy's Atmospheric Radiation Measurement programs at Barrow, Alaska.The Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Program's located at Barrow, Alaska is a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) site. The site provides a scientific infrastructure and data archives for the international Arctic research community. The infrastructure at Barrow has been in place since 1998, with many improvements since then. Barrow instruments include: scanning precipitation Radar-cloud radar, Doppler Lidar, Eddy correlation flux systems, Ceilometer, Manual and state-of-art automatic Balloon sounding systems, Atmospheric Emitted Radiance Interferometer (AERI), Micro-pulse Lidar (MPL), Millimeter cloud radar, High Spectral Resolution Lidar (HSRL) along with all the standard metrological measurements. Data from these instruments is placed in the ARM data archives and are available to the international research community. This poster will discuss what instruments are at Barrow and the challenges of maintaining these instruments in an Arctic site.

  19. Alaska Dental Health Aide Program.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shoffstall-Cone, Sarah; Williard, Mary

    2013-01-01

    In 1999, An Oral Health Survey of American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) Dental Patients found that 79% of 2- to 5-year-olds had a history of tooth decay. The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium in collaboration with Alaska's Tribal Health Organizations (THO) developed a new and diverse dental workforce model to address AI/AN oral health disparities. This paper describes the workforce model and some experience to date of the Dental Health Aide (DHA) Initiative that was introduced under the federally sanctioned Community Health Aide Program in Alaska. These new dental team members work with THO dentists and hygienists to provide education, prevention and basic restorative services in a culturally appropriate manner. The DHA Initiative introduced 4 new dental provider types to Alaska: the Primary Dental Health Aide, the Expanded Function Dental Health Aide, the Dental Health Aide Hygienist and the Dental Health Aide Therapist. The scope of practice between the 4 different DHA providers varies vastly along with the required training and education requirements. DHAs are certified, not licensed, providers. Recertification occurs every 2 years and requires the completion of 24 hours of continuing education and continual competency evaluation. Dental Health Aides provide evidence-based prevention programs and dental care that improve access to oral health care and help address well-documented oral health disparities.

  20. Arctic Sea Ice Trafficability - New Strategies for a Changing Icescape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dammann, Dyre Oliver

    Sea ice is an important part of the Arctic social-environmental system, in part because it provides a platform for human transportation and for marine flora and fauna that use the ice as a habitat. Sea ice loss projected for coming decades is expected to change ice conditions throughout the Arctic, but little is known about the nature and extent of anticipated changes and in particular potential implications for over-ice travel and ice use as a platform. This question has been addressed here through an extensive effort to link sea ice use and key geophysical properties of sea ice, drawing upon extensive field surveys around on-ice operations and local and Indigenous knowledge for the widely different ice uses and ice regimes of Utqiagvik, Kotzebue, and Nome, Alaska.. A set of nine parameters that constrain landfast sea ice use has been derived, including spatial extent, stability, and timing and persistence of landfast ice. This work lays the foundation for a framework to assess and monitor key ice-parameters relevant in the context of ice-use feasibility, safety, and efficiency, drawing on different remote-sensing techniques. The framework outlines the steps necessary to further evaluate relevant parameters in the context of user objectives and key stakeholder needs for a given ice regime and ice use scenario. I have utilized this framework in case studies for three different ice regimes, where I find uses to be constrained by ice thickness, roughness, and fracture potential and develop assessment strategies with accuracy at the relevant spatial scales. In response to the widely reported importance of high-confidence ice thickness measurements, I have developed a new strategy to estimate appropriate thickness compensation factors. Compensation factors have the potential to reduce risk of misrepresenting areas of thin ice when using point-based in-situ assessment methods along a particular route. This approach was tested on an ice road near Kotzebue, Alaska, where

  1. Time varying arctic climate change amplification

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chylek, Petr [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Dubey, Manvendra K [Los Alamos National Laboratory; Lesins, Glen [DALLHOUSIE U; Wang, Muyin [NOAA/JISAO

    2009-01-01

    During the past 130 years the global mean surface air temperature has risen by about 0.75 K. Due to feedbacks -- including the snow/ice albedo feedback -- the warming in the Arctic is expected to proceed at a faster rate than the global average. Climate model simulations suggest that this Arctic amplification produces warming that is two to three times larger than the global mean. Understanding the Arctic amplification is essential for projections of future Arctic climate including sea ice extent and melting of the Greenland ice sheet. We use the temperature records from the Arctic stations to show that (a) the Arctic amplification is larger at latitudes above 700 N compared to those within 64-70oN belt, and that, surprisingly; (b) the ratio of the Arctic to global rate of temperature change is not constant but varies on the decadal timescale. This time dependence will affect future projections of climate changes in the Arctic.

  2. Validation of Cloud Optical Parameters from Passive Remote Sensing in the Arctic by using the Aircraft Measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, H.; Schmidt, S.; Coddington, O.; Wind, G.; Bucholtz, A.; Segal-Rosenhaimer, M.; LeBlanc, S. E.

    2017-12-01

    Cloud Optical Parameters (COPs: e.g., cloud optical thickness and cloud effective radius) and surface albedo are the most important inputs for determining the Cloud Radiative Effect (CRE) at the surface. In the Arctic, the COPs derived from passive remote sensing such as from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) are difficult to obtain with adequate accuracy owing mainly to insufficient knowledge about the snow/ice surface, but also because of the low solar zenith angle. This study aims to validate COPs derived from passive remote sensing in the Arctic by using aircraft measurements collected during two field campaigns based in Fairbanks, Alaska. During both experiments, ARCTAS (Arctic Research of the Composition of the Troposphere from Aircraft and Satellites) and ARISE (Arctic Radiation-IceBridge Sea and Ice Experiment), the Solar Spectral Flux Radiometer (SSFR) measured upwelling and downwelling shortwave spectral irradiances, which can be used to derive surface and cloud albedo, as well as the irradiance transmitted by clouds. We assess the variability of the Arctic sea ice/snow surfaces albedo through these aircraft measurements and incorporate this variability into cloud retrievals for SSFR. We then compare COPs as derived from SSFR and MODIS for all suitable aircraft underpasses of the satellites. Finally, the sensitivities of the COPs to surface albedo and solar zenith angle are investigated.

  3. C-N-P interactions control climate driven changes in regional patterns of C storage on the North Slope of Alaska

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jiang, Yueyang; Rocha, Adrian; Rastetter, Edward; Shaver, Gaius; Mishra, U.; Zhuang, Qianlai; Kwiatkowski, Bonnie

    2016-01-01

    As climate warms, changes in the carbon (C) balance of arctic tundra will play an important role in the global C balance. The C balance of tundra is tightly coupled to the nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) cycles because soil organic matter is the principal source of plant-available nutrients and determines the spatial variation of vegetation biomass across the North Slope of Alaska. Warming will accelerate these nutrient cycles, which should stimulate plant growth.

  4. First report of Armillaria sinapina, a cause of armillaria root disease, associated with a variety of forest tree hosts on sites with diverse climates in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    N. B. Klopfenstein; J. E. Lundquist; J. W. Hanna; M.-S. Kim; G. I. McDonald

    2009-01-01

    In August of 2007, a preliminary survey was conducted in Alaska to evaluate potential impacts of climate change on forest trees. Armillaria sinapina, a root-disease pathogen, was isolated from conifer and hardwood hosts on climatically diverse sites spanning 675 km from the Kenai Peninsula to the Arctic Circle. Seven isolates (NKAK1, NKAK2, NKAK5, NKAK6, NKAK9F, NKAK13...

  5. The Distribution of Snow Black Carbon observed in the Arctic and Compared to the GISS-PUCCINI Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dou, T.; Xiao, C.; Shindell, D. T.; Liu, J.; Eleftheriadis, K.; Ming, J.; Qin, D.

    2012-01-01

    In this study, we evaluate the ability of the latest NASA GISS composition-climate model, GISS-E2- PUCCINI, to simulate the spatial distribution of snow BC (sBC) in the Arctic relative to present-day observations. Radiative forcing due to BC deposition onto Arctic snow and sea ice is also estimated. Two sets of model simulations are analyzed, where meteorology is linearly relaxed towards National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) and towards NASA Modern Era Reanalysis for Research and Applications (MERRA) reanalyses. Results indicate that the modeled concentrations of sBC are comparable with presentday observations in and around the Arctic Ocean, except for apparent underestimation at a few sites in the Russian Arctic. That said, the model has some biases in its simulated spatial distribution of BC deposition to the Arctic. The simulations from the two model runs are roughly equal, indicating that discrepancies between model and observations come from other sources. Underestimation of biomass burning emissions in Northern Eurasia may be the main cause of the low biases in the Russian Arctic. Comparisons of modeled aerosol BC (aBC) with long-term surface observations at Barrow, Alert, Zeppelin and Nord stations show significant underestimation in winter and spring concentrations in the Arctic (most significant in Alaska), although the simulated seasonality of aBC has been greatly improved relative to earlier model versions. This is consistent with simulated biases in vertical profiles of aBC, with underestimation in the lower and middle troposphere but overestimation in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere, suggesting that the wet removal processes in the current model may be too weak or that vertical transport is too rapid, although the simulated BC lifetime seems reasonable. The combination of observations and modeling provides a comprehensive distribution of sBC over the Arctic. On the basis of this distribution, we estimate the decrease in snow

  6. The distribution of snow black carbon observed in the Arctic and compared to the GISS-PUCCINI model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Dou

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we evaluate the ability of the latest NASA GISS composition-climate model, GISS-E2-PUCCINI, to simulate the spatial distribution of snow BC (sBC in the Arctic relative to present-day observations. Radiative forcing due to BC deposition onto Arctic snow and sea ice is also estimated. Two sets of model simulations are analyzed, where meteorology is linearly relaxed towards National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP and towards NASA Modern Era Reanalysis for Research and Applications (MERRA reanalyses. Results indicate that the modeled concentrations of sBC are comparable with present-day observations in and around the Arctic Ocean, except for apparent underestimation at a few sites in the Russian Arctic. That said, the model has some biases in its simulated spatial distribution of BC deposition to the Arctic. The simulations from the two model runs are roughly equal, indicating that discrepancies between model and observations come from other sources. Underestimation of biomass burning emissions in Northern Eurasia may be the main cause of the low biases in the Russian Arctic. Comparisons of modeled aerosol BC (aBC with long-term surface observations at Barrow, Alert, Zeppelin and Nord stations show significant underestimation in winter and spring concentrations in the Arctic (most significant in Alaska, although the simulated seasonality of aBC has been greatly improved relative to earlier model versions. This is consistent with simulated biases in vertical profiles of aBC, with underestimation in the lower and middle troposphere but overestimation in the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere, suggesting that the wet removal processes in the current model may be too weak or that vertical transport is too rapid, although the simulated BC lifetime seems reasonable. The combination of observations and modeling provides a comprehensive distribution of sBC over the Arctic. On the basis of this distribution, we estimate the

  7. Monitoring climate-driven ice regime shifts of Pan-Arctic lakes with long-term satellite observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Surdu, Cristina; Fernandez Prieto, Diego; Duguay, Claude

    2017-04-01

    Arctic lakes represent an important part of the global cryosphere and the timing of the seasonal freeze-thaw cycle, and the fraction of lakes freezing to the bed in winter, are a useful tool for monitoring the impacts on the cryosphere from global climate change and warming Arctic temperatures. Lake ice-cover both forces and responds to climate variability. Freeze-up and break-up timing of the lake ice cover affects ecological processes and land-atmosphere energy exchanges. Trends in the phenology and thickness of the ice tend to be related to climatic and meteorological conditions, such as variations in air temperature and snow cover. To date, records of ice phenology and winter maximum ice thickness for shallow Arctic lakes are relatively sparse and vary in length thus limiting detection of longer-term trends at a regional scale. In this study, break-up timing and winter maximum ice thickness was observed for over 900, mainly small and medium size lakes, of various depths, many of which are shallow, across the Arctic, from 1992 to 2016, using satellite imagery. To evaluate the extent of changes that lake ice has undergone in recent climate conditions, three key, lake-rich Arctic regions were selected: the North Slope of Alaska (with the longest observational record), the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and the Lena Della in northern Siberia. This research provides a detailed spatial analysis of changes in ice break-up, winter maximum ice thickness and summer ice minimum for High Arctic lakes, investigating regional trends and regional comparison, and climatic drivers for each region.

  8. Comparative phytosociological investigation of subalpine alder thickets in southwestern Alaska and the North Pacific

    Science.gov (United States)

    Talbot, Stephen S.; Talbot, Sandra L.; Daniëls, F. J. A.

    2005-01-01

    We present the first vegetation analysis of subalpine alder (Alnus viridis) thickets in southwestern Alaska. The data are primarily from mesic, hilly and mountainous sites ranging from the westernmost tip of the Alaska Peninsula to the northern Kenai Peninsula, spanning 1,000 km on an E–W gradient and 700 km on a N–S gradient. 127 relevés from 18 sites represent the range of structural and compositional variation in the matrix of vegetation and landform diversity. Data were analyzed by multivariate and traditional Braun-Blanquet methods. One association is distinguished, Sambuco racemosi-Alnetum viridis ass. nov. with three new subassociations, oplopanacetosum horridi, typicum, and rubetosum spectabilis with the latter subdivided into four variants. These phytocoena are well-differentiated, although they form a syntaxonomical continuum. The composition and structure of these communities are described and interpreted in relation to complex environmental factors; these are analyzed using Jancey's ranking on F-values. Community composition is primarily related to elevation, longitude, soil moisture, and latitude. Phytogeographic comparison of southwestern Alaska alder communities with those elsewhere in the North Pacific suggests a close floristic relationship to those of southcentral, southeastern Alaska and coastal British Columbia, Canada. All these communities belong to the same association, while those of the eastern and southern parts of the Kamchatka Peninsula, Russia belong to a different association. Syntaxonomy of the 4 major communities is discussed. Within the Northern Hemisphere, vascular plant species of southwestern Alaska alder thickets primarily occur in East Asia and North America, 36 %; while 26 % are circumpolar, and 22 % are restricted to North America. From a latitudinal perspective, the distribution of vascular plant species within these alder thickets peaks in the high-subarctic, low-subarctic, and temperate latitudinal zones, with low

  9. Environmental radioactivity in the Arctic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Strand, P.; Cooke, A.

    1995-01-01

    The conference considered several broad themes: (1) assessment of releases from landbased sources and river transport, (2) assessment of dumping of nuclear waste, (3) arctic radioecology, (4) assessment of impacts of nuclear explosions and accidents, (5) nuclear safety and consequences of nuclear accidents in the arctic, and (6) waste management. The presentations demonstrated that current levels of radioactivity in the Arctic are generally low. The two most important sources are global fallout from the nuclear weapons tests of the 1950's and 1960's, and discharges to the sea from reprocessing plants in Western Europe which are transported northward by prevailing currents. The conference was attended by scientists from 17 countries and served as a forum for collection and dissemination of information on the range of themes and described above. It is hoped that this will serve to increase awareness of areas of uncertainty and act as a stimulus to further research

  10. The Arctic tourism in Russia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yury F. Lukin

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available In the new book "Arctic tourism in Russia" the basic concepts, resource potential, attractiveness (from Lat. Attrahere: to attract, opportunities and threats of environmental, cruise, international, and other types of tourism in the Arctic are system-based analyzed, for the first time in the literature. The sphere of tourism has becoming an integral sector of the economy, having a multiplicative effect for the development of infrastructure, social services, employment. Reference materials about the tourism products in the Russian Arctic and Far North regions are published, including the Arkhangelsk and Murmansk regions; Republic of Karelia, Komi, Sakha (Yakutia; Nenets, the Yamalo-Nenets, Khanty-Mansiysk, the Chukotka Autonomous Districts; Taimyr Dolgan-Nenets Municipal District, Turukhansk district, the city of Norilsk of the Krasnoyarsk region; Magadan region, Kamchatka region.

  11. Using the Alaska Ocean Observing System to Inform Decision Making for Coastal Resiliency Relating to Inundation, Ocean Acidification, Harmful Algal Blooms, Navigation Safety and Impacts of Vessel Traffic

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCammon, M.

    2017-12-01

    State and federal agencies, coastal communities and Alaska Native residents, and non-governmental organizations are increasingly turning to the Alaska Ocean Observing System (AOOS) as a major source of ocean and coastal data and information products to inform decision making relating to a changing Arctic. AOOS implements its mission to provide ocean observing data and information to meet stakeholder needs by ensuring that all programs are "science based, stakeholder driven and policy neutral." Priority goals are to increase access to existing coastal and ocean data; package information and data in useful ways to meet stakeholder needs; and increase observing and forecasting capacity in all regions of the state. Recently certified by NOAA, the AOOS Data Assembly Center houses the largest collection of real-time ocean and coastal data, environmental models, and biological data in Alaska, and develops tools and applications to make it more publicly accessible and useful. Given the paucity of observations in the Alaska Arctic, the challenge is how to make decisions with little data compared to other areas of the U.S. coastline. AOOS addresses this issue by: integrating and visualizing existing data; developing data and information products and tools to make data more useful; serving as a convener role in areas such as coastal inundation and flooding, impacts of warming temperatures on food security, ocean acidification, observing technologies and capacity; and facilitating planning efforts to increase observations. In this presentation, I will give examples of each of these efforts, lessons learned, and suggestions for future actions.

  12. Optically thin ice clouds in Arctic : Formation processes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jouan, C.; Girard, E.; Pelon, J.; Blanchet, J.; Wobrock, W.; Gultepe, I.; Gayet, J.; Delanoë, J.; Mioche, G.; Adam de Villiers, R.

    2010-12-01

    Arctic ice cloud formation during winter is poorly understood mainly due to lack of observations and the remoteness of this region. Their influence on Northern Hemisphere weather and climate is of paramount importance, and the modification of their properties, linked to aerosol-cloud interaction processes, needs to be better understood. Large concentration of aerosols in the Arctic during winter is associated to long-range transport of anthropogenic aerosols from the mid-latitudes to the Arctic. Observations show that sulphuric acid coats most of these aerosols. Laboratory and in-situ measurements show that at cold temperature (coating lowers the freezing point and deactivates ice nuclei (IN). Therefore, the IN concentration is reduced in these regions and there is less competition for the same available moisture. As a result, large ice crystals form in relatively small concentrations. It is hypothesized that the observed low concentration of large ice crystals in thin ice clouds is linked to the acidification of aerosols. Extensive measurements from ground-based sites and satellite remote sensing (CloudSat and CALIPSO) reveal the existence of two types of extended optically thin ice clouds (TICs) in the Arctic during the polar night and early spring. The first type (TIC-1) is seen only by the lidar, but not the radar, and is found in pristine environment whereas the second type (TIC-2) is detected by both sensors, and is associated with high concentration of aerosols, possibly anthropogenic. TIC-2 is characterized by a low concentration of ice crystals that are large enough to precipitate. To further investigate the interactions between TICs clouds and aerosols, in-situ, airborne and satellite measurements of specific cases observed during the POLARCAT and ISDAC field experiments are analyzed. These two field campaigns took place respectively over the North Slope of Alaska and Northern part of Sweden in April 2008. Analysis of cloud type can be done from these

  13. Climate change and natural hazards in the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eichelberger, J. C.; Eichelberger, L. P.

    2015-12-01

    Climate change is motivating much of the science research in the Arctic. Natural hazards, which have always been with us and can be influenced by climate, also pose a serious threat to sustainability of Arctic communities, the Native cultures they support, and the health and wellbeing of their residents. These are themes of the US Chairship of the Arctic Council. For example, repetitive floods, often associated with spring ice jams, are a particularly severe problem for river communities. People live near rivers because access to food, water and river transportation support an indigenous subsistence lifestyle. Some settlement sites for Indigenous Peoples were mandated by distant authorities without regard to natural hazards, in Alaska no less than in other countries. Thus bad policy of the past casts a long shadow into the future. Remote communities are subject to multiple challenges, including natural hazards, access to education, and limited job opportunities. These intersect to reproduce structural vulnerability and have over time created a need for substantial support from government. In the past 40 years, the themes of "sustainability" and "self reliance" have become prominent strategies for governance at both state and local levels. Communities now struggle to demonstrate their sustainability while grappling with natural hazards and chronic poverty. In the extreme, the shifting of responsibility to resource-poor communities can be called "structural violence". Accepting the status quo can mean living without sanitation and reliable water supply, leading to the high observed rates of disease not normally encountered in developed countries. Many of the efforts to address climate change and natural hazards are complementary: monitoring the environment; forecasting extreme events; and community-based participatory research and planning. Natural disaster response is complementary to the Arctic Council's Search and Rescue (SAR) initiative, differing in that those

  14. Alaska softwood market price arbitrage.

    Science.gov (United States)

    James A. Stevens; David J. Brooks

    2003-01-01

    This study formally tests the hypothesis that markets for Alaska lumber and logs are integrated with those of similar products from the U.S. Pacific Northwest and Canada. The prices from these three supply regions are tested in a common demand market (Japan). Cointegration tests are run on paired log and lumber data. Our results support the conclusion that western...

  15. Tuberculosis among Children in Alaska.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gessner, Bradford D.

    1997-01-01

    The incidence of tuberculosis among Alaskan children under 15 was more than twice the national rate, with Alaska Native children showing a much higher incidence. Children with household exposure to adults with active tuberculosis had a high risk of infection. About 22 percent of pediatric tuberculosis cases were identified through school…

  16. Alaska Dental Health Aide Program

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Shoffstall-Cone

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Background. In 1999, An Oral Health Survey of American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN Dental Patients found that 79% of 2- to 5-year-olds had a history of tooth decay. The Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium in collaboration with Alaska’s Tribal Health Organizations (THO developed a new and diverse dental workforce model to address AI/AN oral health disparities. Objectives. This paper describes the workforce model and some experience to date of the Dental Health Aide (DHA Initiative that was introduced under the federally sanctioned Community Health Aide Program in Alaska. These new dental team members work with THO dentists and hygienists to provide education, prevention and basic restorative services in a culturally appropriate manner. Results. The DHA Initiative introduced 4 new dental provider types to Alaska: the Primary Dental Health Aide, the Expanded Function Dental Health Aide, the Dental Health Aide Hygienist and the Dental Health Aide Therapist. The scope of practice between the 4 different DHA providers varies vastly along with the required training and education requirements. DHAs are certified, not licensed, providers. Recertification occurs every 2 years and requires the completion of 24 hours of continuing education and continual competency evaluation. Conclusions. Dental Health Aides provide evidence-based prevention programs and dental care that improve access to oral health care and help address well-documented oral health disparities.

  17. Challenges of climate change: an Arctic perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corell, Robert W

    2006-06-01

    Climate change is being experienced particularly intensely in the Arctic. Arctic average temperature has risen at almost twice the rate as that of the rest of the world in the past few decades. Widespread melting of glaciers and sea ice and rising permafrost temperatures present additional evidence of strong Arctic warming. These changes in the Arctic provide an early indication of the environmental and societal significance of global consequences. The Arctic also provides important natural resources to the rest of the world (such as oil, gas, and fish) that will be affected by climate change, and the melting of Arctic glaciers is one of the factors contributing to sea level rise around the globe. An acceleration of these climatic trends is projected to occur during this century, due to ongoing increases in concentrations of greenhouse gases in the Earth's atmosphere. These Arctic changes will, in turn, impact the planet as a whole.

  18. Widespread release of old carbon across the Siberian Arctic echoed by its large rivers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ö. Gustafsson

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Over decadal-centennial timescales, only a few mechanisms in the carbon-climate system could cause a massive net redistribution of carbon from land and ocean systems to the atmosphere in response to climate warming. The largest such climate-vulnerable carbon pool is the old organic carbon (OC stored in Arctic permafrost (perennially frozen soils. Climate warming, both predicted and now observed to be the strongest globally in the Eurasian Arctic and Alaska, causes thaw-release of old permafrost carbon from local tundra sites. However, a central challenge for the assessment of the general vulnerability of this old OC pool is to deduce any signal integrating its release over larger scales. Here we examine radiocarbon measurements of molecular soil markers exported by the five Great Russian-Arctic Rivers (Ob, Yenisey, Lena, Indigirka and Kolyma, employed as natural integrators of carbon release processes in their watersheds. The signals held in estuarine surface sediments revealed that average radiocarbon ages of n-alkanes increased east-to-west from 6400 yr BP in Kolyma to 11 400 yr BP in Ob. This is consistent with westwards trends of both warmer climate and more degraded organic matter as indicated by the ratio of high molecular weight (HMW n-alkanoic acids to HMW n-alkanes. The dynamics of Siberian permafrost can thus be probed via the molecular-radiocarbon signal as carried by Arctic rivers. Old permafrost carbon is at present vulnerable to mobilization over continental scales. Climate-induced changes in the radiocarbon fingerprint of released permafrost carbon will likely depend on changes in both permafrost coverage and Arctic soil hydraulics.

  19. Short commentary on marine productivity at Arctic shelf breaks: upwelling, advection and vertical mixing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randelhoff, Achim; Sundfjord, Arild

    2018-04-01

    The future of Arctic marine ecosystems has received increasing attention in recent years as the extent of the sea ice cover is dwindling. Although the Pacific and Atlantic inflows both import huge quantities of nutrients and plankton, they feed into the Arctic Ocean in quite diverse regions. The strongly stratified Pacific sector has a historically heavy ice cover, a shallow shelf and dominant upwelling-favourable winds, while the Atlantic sector is weakly stratified, with a dynamic ice edge and a complex bathymetry. We argue that shelf break upwelling is likely not a universal but rather a regional, albeit recurring, feature of the new Arctic. It is the regional oceanography that decides its importance through a range of diverse factors such as stratification, bathymetry and wind forcing. Teasing apart their individual contributions in different regions can only be achieved by spatially resolved time series and dedicated modelling efforts. The Northern Barents Sea shelf is an example of a region where shelf break upwelling likely does not play a dominant role, in contrast to the shallower shelves north of Alaska where ample evidence for its importance has already accumulated. Still, other factors can contribute to marked future increases in biological productivity along the Arctic shelf break. A warming inflow of nutrient-rich Atlantic Water feeds plankton at the same time as it melts the sea ice, permitting increased photosynthesis. Concurrent changes in sea ice cover and zooplankton communities advected with the boundary currents make for a complex mosaic of regulating factors that do not allow for Arctic-wide generalizations.

  20. Short commentary on marine productivity at Arctic shelf breaks: upwelling, advection and vertical mixing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Randelhoff

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The future of Arctic marine ecosystems has received increasing attention in recent years as the extent of the sea ice cover is dwindling. Although the Pacific and Atlantic inflows both import huge quantities of nutrients and plankton, they feed into the Arctic Ocean in quite diverse regions. The strongly stratified Pacific sector has a historically heavy ice cover, a shallow shelf and dominant upwelling-favourable winds, while the Atlantic sector is weakly stratified, with a dynamic ice edge and a complex bathymetry. We argue that shelf break upwelling is likely not a universal but rather a regional, albeit recurring, feature of the new Arctic. It is the regional oceanography that decides its importance through a range of diverse factors such as stratification, bathymetry and wind forcing. Teasing apart their individual contributions in different regions can only be achieved by spatially resolved time series and dedicated modelling efforts. The Northern Barents Sea shelf is an example of a region where shelf break upwelling likely does not play a dominant role, in contrast to the shallower shelves north of Alaska where ample evidence for its importance has already accumulated. Still, other factors can contribute to marked future increases in biological productivity along the Arctic shelf break. A warming inflow of nutrient-rich Atlantic Water feeds plankton at the same time as it melts the sea ice, permitting increased photosynthesis. Concurrent changes in sea ice cover and zooplankton communities advected with the boundary currents make for a complex mosaic of regulating factors that do not allow for Arctic-wide generalizations.

  1. NSF-supported education/outreach program takes young researchers to the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexeev, V. A.; Walsh, J. E.; Hock, R.; Kaden, U.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Kholodov, A. L.; Bret-Harte, M. S.; Sparrow, E. B.

    2015-12-01

    Today, more than ever, an integrated cross-disciplinary approach is necessary to explain changes in the Arctic and understand their implications for the human environment. Advanced training and active involvement of early-career scientists is an important component of this cross-disciplinary approach. This effort led by the International Arctic Research Center at the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) started in 2003. The newly supported project in 2013 is planning four summer schools (one per year) focused on four themes in four different Arctic locations. It provides the participants with an interdisciplinary perspective on Arctic change and its impacts on diverse sectors of the North. It is linked to other ongoing long-term observational and educational programs (e.g. NABOS, Nansen and Amundsen Basins Observational System; LTER, Long Term Environmental Research) and targets young scientists by using the interdisciplinary and place-based setting to broaden their perspective on Arctic change and to enhance their communication skills. Each course for 15-20 people consists of classroom and hands-on components and work with a multidisciplinary group of mentors on projects devoted to themes exemplified by the location. A specialist from the School of Education at UAF evaluates student's progress during the summer schools. Lessons learned during the 12 years of conducting summer schools, methods of attracting in-kind support and approaches to teaching students are prominently featured in this study. Activities during the most recent school, conducted in Fairbanks and LTER Toolik Lake Field Station in 2015 are the focus of this presentation.

  2. Black Carbon in Arctic Snow: Preliminary Results from Recent Field Measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warren, S. G.; Grenfell, T. C.; Radionov, V. F.; Clarke, A. D.

    2007-12-01

    Annual snowpacks act to amplify variations in regional solar heating of the surface due to positive feedback processes associated with areal melting and precipitation. Small amounts of black carbon (BC) in the snow can reduce the albedo and modulate shortwave absorption and transmission affecting the onset of melt and heating of the snow pack. The effect of black carbon on the albedo of snow in the Arctic is estimated to be up to a few percent. The only prior survey of arctic snow was that of Clarke and Noone in 1983-84. We have begun a wide- area survey of the BC content of arctic snow in order to update and expand the 1983/84 survey. Samples of snow have been collected in mid to late spring when the entire winter snowpack was accessible. The samples have been melted and filtered, and the filters analyzed for absorptive impurities. To date, sites in Alaska, Canada, Greenland, and in the Arctic Basin have been sampled. In March and April 2007 we also carried out a field program at four sites in northwestern Russia as part of the International Polar Year. Preliminary results based on visual comparison with the standard filters indicate that the snow cover in arctic North America and the Beaufort Sea have lower BC concentrations now than 20 years ago while levels in Greenland are about the same. Background levels of BC in Russia are approximately twice those in North America consistent with modeling predictions of Flanner et al., 2007. More accurate values of absorption will be obtained by measurement of spectral transmission of the filters, which will also allow the relative contributions of BC and soil dust to be determined.

  3. Marine Mammals and Climate Change in the Pacific Arctic: Impacts & Resilience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, S. E.

    2014-12-01

    Extreme reductions in Arctic sea ice extent and thickness have become a hallmark of climate change, but impacts to the marine ecosystem are poorly understood. As top predators, marine mammals must adapt to biological responses to physical forcing and thereby become sentinels to ecosystem variability and reorganization. Recent sea ice retreats have influenced the ecology of marine mammals in the Pacific Arctic sector. Walruses now often haul out by the thousands along the NW Alaska coast in late summer, and reports of harbor porpoise, humpback, fin and minke whales in the Chukchi Sea demonstrate that these temperate species routinely occur there. In 2010, satellite tagged bowhead whales from Atlantic and Pacific populations met in the Northwest Passage, an overlap thought precluded by sea ice since the Holocene. To forage effectively, baleen whales must target dense patches of zooplankton and small fishes. In the Pacific Arctic, bowhead and gray whales appear to be responding to enhanced prey availability delivered both by new production and advection pathways. Two programs, the Distributed Biological Observatory (DBO) and the Synthesis of Arctic Research (SOAR), include tracking of marine mammal and prey species' responses to ecosystem shifts associated with sea ice loss. Both programs provide an integrated-ecosystem baseline in support of the development of a web-based Marine Mammal Health Map, envisioned as a component of the U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS). An overarching goal is to identify ecological patterns for marine mammals in the 'new' Arctic, as a foundation for integrative research, local response and adaptive management.

  4. Infant Mortality and American Indians/Alaska Natives

    Science.gov (United States)

    ... American Indian/Alaska Native > Infant Health & Mortality Infant Mortality and American Indians/Alaska Natives American Indian/Alaska ... as compared to non-Hispanic white mothers. Infant Mortality Rate: Infant mortality rate per 1,000 live ...

  5. Aminostratigraphic correlations and paleotemperature implications, Pliocene-Pleistocene high-sea-level deposits, northwestern Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaufman, Darrell S.; Brigham-Grette, Julie

    Multiple periods of Late Pliocene and Pleistocene high sea level are recorded by surficial deposits along the coastal plains of northwestern Alaska. Analyses of the extent of amino acid epimerization in fossil molluscan shells from the Nome coastal plain of the northern Bering Sea coast, and from the Alaskan Arctic Coastal Plain of the Chukchi and Beaufort Sea coasts, allow recognition of at least five intervals of higher-than-present relative sea level. Three Late Pliocene transgressions are represented at Nome by the complex and protracted Beringian transgression, and on the Arctic Coastal Plain by the Colvillian, Bigbendian, and Fishcreekian transgressions. These were followed by a lengthy period of non-marine deposition during the Early Pleistocene when sea level did not reach above its present position. A Middle Pleistocene high-sea-level event is represented at Nome by the Anvilian transgression, and on the Arctic Coastal Plain by the Wainwrightian transgression. Anvilian deposits at the type locality are considerably younger than previously thought, perhaps as young as Oxygen-Isotope Stage 11 (˜410,000 BP). Finally, the last interglacial Pelukian transgression is represented discontinuously along the shores of northwestern Alaska. Amino acid epimerization data, together with previous paleomagnetic measurements, radiometric-age determinations, and paleontologic evidence provide geochronological constraints on the sequence of marine deposits. They form the basis of regional correlations and offer a means of evaluating the post-depositional thermal history of the high-sea-level deposits. Provisional correlations between marine units at Nome and the Artic Coastal Plain indicate that the temperature difference that separates the two sites today had existed by about 3.0 Ma. Since that time, the effective diagenetic temperature was lowered by about 3-4°C at both sites, and the mean annual temperature was lowered considerably more. This temperature decrease was

  6. U.S. Geological Survey offshore program of resource and geo-environmental studies and topical investigations, Pacific-Arctic region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scholl, David William

    1978-01-01

    The Geological Survey 's marine geology investigations in the Pacific-Arctic area are presented in this report in the context of the underlying socio-economic problem of expanding the domestic production of oil and gas and other mineral and hard- and soft-rock resources while maintaining acceptable standards in the marine environment. The primary mission of the Survey 's Pacific-Arctic Branch of Marine Geology is to provide scientifically interpreted information about the (1) resource potential, (2) geo-environmental setting, and (3) overall geologic characteristics of the continental margins (that is, the continental shelf, slope and rise) and adjacent deeper water and shallower coastal areas off California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska and Hawaii and also, where it is of interest to the U.S. Government, more remote deep-sea areas of the Pacific-Arctic realm. (Sinha-OEIS)

  7. Updating the Arctic Gravity Project grid with new airborne and Extended Continental Shelf data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coakley, B.; Kenyon, S. C.; Forsberg, R.

    2013-12-01

    Measuring gravity anomalies can be done at the ground surface as well as from ships, planes and satellites. To make use of these measurements, it is often necessary to compile them into a continuous spatial representation. Compilation is complicated by differences in survey parameters, gravimeter sensitivity and reduction methods. Gravity anomalies measured during independent surveys often require rescaling to be incorporated into a single grid. Cross-over errors are the classic means to assess repeatability of track measurements. Prior to the introduction of near-universal GPS positioning, positional uncertainty was an element evaluated by cross-over analysis. GPS positions can be treated as more or less true, enabling evaluation of differences in measurements due to contrasting sensitivity, reference and reduction techniques. The Arctic Gravity Project (AGP) grid achieves excellent, near-isotropic coverage over much of the Arctic Ocean by combining satellite, airborne, submarine, surface ship and ice set-out measurements of gravity anomalies. There has been a substantial increase in icebreaker activity across the Amerasia Basin due to mapping of the circum-Arctic nation's extended continental shelves, resulting in a substantial expansion of the available high-resolution surface ship gravity anomaly data. These data will be incorporated in the next revision of the AGP. Another substantial new resource for the AGP grid will be the airborne gravity data set being collected by National Geodetic Survey under the GRAV-D program. These data are flown at ellipsoidal elevations ranging between 5 and 10 km, well clear of the topography and at adequate resolution for the objective of redetermining the North American geoid. As a part of this project, the whole of Alaska will be surveyed. The GRAV-D survey lines extend out to the edge of the continental shelf. Reduced GRAV-D survey lines cut lines collected by the USCGC Healy south of mainland Alaska and lines collected by

  8. 78 FR 73144 - Subsistence Management Program for Public Lands in Alaska; Western Interior Alaska Federal...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-12-05

    ... engage in outreach efforts for this notice to Tribes and Alaska Native corporations to ensure they are... Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App., the Western Interior Alaska Federal Subsistence Regional...

  9. Effect of Arctic Geoengineering on Tropical Precipitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nalam, Aditya; Govindasamy, Bala; Modak, Angshuman

    2017-04-01

    Arctic geoengineering wherein sunlight absorption is reduced only in the Arctic has been suggested as a remedial measure to counteract the on-going rapid climate change in the Arctic. Several modeling studies show that Arctic geoengineering can minify Arctic warming but it would shift the ITCZ southward. In this study, we investigate and quantify the implications of this ITCZ shift for the global monsoon regions using the Community Atmosphere Model version 4 (CAM4). In our Arctic geoengineering simulation, a prescription of 11 Mt of sulfate aerosols in the Arctic stratosphere, nearly cancels the Arctic warming (6 K) due to a CO2 doubling but it shifts ITCZ southward by 1.5⁰, resulting in a decrease/increase in annual mean precipitation in the Northern Hemisphere (NH)/Southern Hemisphere (SH) monsoon regions by up to -12/+17%. Polar geoengineering, where sulfate aerosols are prescribed in both Arctic and Antarctic, reduces the southward ITCZ shift to 0.15⁰ and correspondingly reduces the precipitation changes in the monsoon regions keeping the annual mean changes within ±7 %. ITCZ shift due to Global geoengineering, where aerosols are prescribed uniformly around the globe, is much smaller and keeps precipitation changes in most monsoon regions within ±2 %. Global geoengineering also cancels the Arctic warming appreciably and restores the Arctic sea-ice extent. Further, the zonal wind anomaly and stratospheric water vapour increase due to Global geoengineering are much smaller than Arctic and Polar geoengineering. Therefore, we conclude that Global geoengineering is a better choice than regional geoengineering proposals such as the Arctic and Polar geoengineering if the goal is to alleviate climate change in the Arctic.

  10. Source attribution and interannual variability of Arctic pollution in spring constrained by aircraft (ARCTAS, ARCPAC and satellite (AIRS observations of carbon monoxide

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. A. Fisher

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available We use aircraft observations of carbon monoxide (CO from the NASA ARCTAS and NOAA ARCPAC campaigns in April 2008 together with multiyear (2003–2008 CO satellite data from the AIRS instrument and a global chemical transport model (GEOS-Chem to better understand the sources, transport, and interannual variability of pollution in the Arctic in spring. Model simulation of the aircraft data gives best estimates of CO emissions in April 2008 of 26 Tg month−1 for Asian anthropogenic, 9.4 for European anthropogenic, 4.1 for North American anthropogenic, 15 for Russian biomass burning (anomalously large that year, and 23 for Southeast Asian biomass burning. We find that Asian anthropogenic emissions are the dominant source of Arctic CO pollution everywhere except in surface air where European anthropogenic emissions are of similar importance. Russian biomass burning makes little contribution to mean CO (reflecting the long CO lifetime but makes a large contribution to CO variability in the form of combustion plumes. Analysis of two pollution events sampled by the aircraft demonstrates that AIRS can successfully observe pollution transport to the Arctic in the mid-troposphere. The 2003–2008 record of CO from AIRS shows that interannual variability averaged over the Arctic cap is very small. AIRS CO columns over Alaska are highly correlated with the Ocean Niño Index, suggesting a link between El Niño and Asian pollution transport to the Arctic. AIRS shows lower-than-average CO columns over Alaska during April 2008, despite the Russian fires, due to a weakened Aleutian Low hindering transport from Asia and associated with the moderate 2007–2008 La Niña. This suggests that Asian pollution influence over the Arctic may be particularly large under strong El Niño conditions.

  11. Expanding Alaska's Remote Ocean Observing Capabilities Using Robotic Gliders and Remote Sensing Technologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janzen, C.; McCammon, M.; Winsor, P.; Murphy, D. J.; Mathis, J. T.; Baumgartner, M.; Stafford, K.; Statscewich, H.; Evans, W.; Potter, R. A.

    2016-02-01

    The Alaska Ocean Observing System (AOOS) is directed by Congress to facilitate, implement and support ocean observing for the entire coast of Alaska, working with federal, state, local and private sector partners. However, developing an integrated ocean observing system at high latitudes presents unique challenges. In addition to the harsh environment, the region covered by AOOS is made up of nearly 44,000 miles of coastline, larger than the marine systems in the rest of the United States combined. No other observing system in the United States has such climate extremes, significant geographic distances, and limited observing infrastructure. Making use of robotic technologies in Alaskan waters has been successfully demonstrated with the pilot deployment of a real-time marine mammal detection system deployed on a Slocum buoyancy controlled glider. The glider also carries payload to measure high resolution temperature and salinity data. With these simultaneous data streams, scientists are investigating how marine mammal occurrences are related to water column conditions and mixing fronts, as well as comparing northern versus southern Chukchi community composition, inshore (Alaska Coastal Current) waters, and offshore (Bering Sea) waters. In its third year, the glider is now equipped with lithium batteries that allow it to operate unattended for an entire Arctic summer season, whereas past deployments were limited to about 10 days. Developing and applying such cutting edge, long-endurance autonomous technology is benefitting others monitoring in Arctic regions where shipboard access is not only expensive, but limited to fair weather conditions during the openwater (ice free) seasons of summer to early fall.

  12. International migration patterns of Red-throated Loons (Gavia stellata) from four breeding populations in Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCloskey, Sarah E.; Uher-Koch, Brian D.; Schmutz, Joel A.; Fondell, Thomas F.

    2018-01-01

    Identifying post-breeding migration and wintering distributions of migratory birds is important for understanding factors that may drive population dynamics. Red-throated Loons (Gavia stellata) are widely distributed across Alaska and currently have varying population trends, including some populations with recent periods of decline. To investigate population differentiation and the location of migration pathways and wintering areas, which may inform population trend patterns, we used satellite transmitters (n = 32) to describe migration patterns of four geographically separate breeding populations of Red-throated Loons in Alaska. On average (± SD) Red-throated Loons underwent long (6,288 ± 1,825 km) fall and spring migrations predominantly along coastlines. The most northern population (Arctic Coastal Plain) migrated westward to East Asia and traveled approximately 2,000 km farther to wintering sites than the three more southerly populations (Seward Peninsula, Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, and Copper River Delta) which migrated south along the Pacific coast of North America. These migration paths are consistent with the hypothesis that Red-throated Loons from the Arctic Coastal Plain are exposed to contaminants in East Asia. The three more southerly breeding populations demonstrated a chain migration pattern in which the more northerly breeding populations generally wintered in more northerly latitudes. Collectively, the migration paths observed in this study demonstrate that some geographically distinct breeding populations overlap in wintering distribution while others use highly different wintering areas. Red-throated Loon population trends in Alaska may therefore be driven by a wide range of effects throughout the annual cycle.

  13. Arctic resources : a mechatronics opportunity

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McKean, M.; Baiden, G. [Penguin Automated Systems Inc., Naughton, ON (Canada)

    2008-07-01

    This paper discussed the telerobotic mechatronics opportunities that exist to access mineral resources in the Arctic. The Mining Automation Project (MAP) determined that telerobotics could contribute to productivity gains while providing increased worker safety. The socio-economic benefits of advanced mechatronics for Arctic resource development are particularly attractive due to reduced infrastructure needs; operating costs; and environmental impacts. A preliminary analysis of mining transportation options by the authors revealed that there is a case for in-situ resource utilization (ISRU) for oil and gas processing to address resource development. The ISRU options build on concepts developed to support space exploration and were proposed to reduce or modify transportation loads to allow more sustainable and efficient Arctic resource development. Many benefits in terms of efficiency could be achieved by combining demonstrated mechatronics with ISRU because of the constrained transportation infrastructure in the Arctic. In the context of harsh environment operations, mechatronics may provide an opportunity for undersea resource facilities. 15 refs., 6 figs.

  14. Mining in the European Arctic

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Dam, Karin; Scheepstra, Adriana; Gille, Johan; Stepien, Adam; Koivurova, Timo; Stepien, Adam; Koivurova, Timo; Kankaanpää, Paula

    The European Arctic has been recently experiencing an upsurge in mining activities. This is reflected in an on-going interest from the industry, regulators and the public. However, current and future prospects are highly sensitive to mineral price fluctuations. The EU is a major consumer and

  15. Computational problems in Arctic Research

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Petrov, I

    2016-01-01

    This article is to inform about main problems in the area of Arctic shelf seismic prospecting and exploitation of the Northern Sea Route: simulation of the interaction of different ice formations (icebergs, hummocks, and drifting ice floes) with fixed ice-resistant platforms; simulation of the interaction of icebreakers and ice- class vessels with ice formations; modeling of the impact of the ice formations on the underground pipelines; neutralization of damage for fixed and mobile offshore industrial structures from ice formations; calculation of the strength of the ground pipelines; transportation of hydrocarbons by pipeline; the problem of migration of large ice formations; modeling of the formation of ice hummocks on ice-resistant stationary platform; calculation the stability of fixed platforms; calculation dynamic processes in the water and air of the Arctic with the processing of data and its use to predict the dynamics of ice conditions; simulation of the formation of large icebergs, hummocks, large ice platforms; calculation of ridging in the dynamics of sea ice; direct and inverse problems of seismic prospecting in the Arctic; direct and inverse problems of electromagnetic prospecting of the Arctic. All these problems could be solved by up-to-date numerical methods, for example, using grid-characteristic method. (paper)

  16. Can Canada Avoid Arctic Militarization?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-05-20

    Heininen, Lassi . 1992. “The Conflict of Interests Between the Environment and Military Strategy in Northern Waters and the Arctic.” In Perspectives on...Environmental Conflict and International Relations, edited by Jyrki Käkönen, 55-71. London: Pinter Publishers, 1992. Heininen, Lassi , and Heather N

  17. Building Materials in Arctic Climate

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Ole Mejlhede

    2005-01-01

    Building in the artic requires special attention on the appropriateness of building materials. The harsh climate makes execution difficult and sets unusual requirements for the pure material properties. In addition, there is a lack of choice of good, natural building materials in the arctic...

  18. U.S. Arctic Security

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-03-01

    continuously. Lastly, Arctic ecotourism is on the rise and will play a role in the economics of the region. The U.S. Coast Guard reports cruise...ships transiting the Bering Strait, mostly attributed to the increase in ecotourism and cargo movement.16 On January 15th, 2012, the U.S. Coast Guard

  19. Participatory Methods in Arctic Research

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Faber, Louise

    2018-01-01

    This book is a collection of articles written by researchers at Aalborg University, affiliated with AAU Arctic. The articles are about how the researchers in their respective projects work with stakeholders and citizens in different ways, for example in connection with problem formulation, data c...

  20. Anticipating Future Extreme Climate Events for Alaska Using Dynamical Downscaling and Quantile Mapping

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lader, R.; Walsh, J. E.

    2016-12-01

    Alaska is projected to experience major changes in extreme climate during the 21st century, due to greenhouse warming and exacerbated by polar amplification, wherein the Arctic is warming at twice the rate compared to the Northern Hemisphere. Given its complex topography, Alaska displays extreme gradients of temperature and precipitation. However, global climate models (GCMs), which typically have a spatial resolution on the order of 100km, struggle to replicate these extremes. To help resolve this issue, this study employs dynamically downscaled regional climate simulations and quantile-mapping methodologies to provide a full suite of daily model variables at 20 km spatial resolution for Alaska, from 1970 to 2100. These data include downscaled products of the: ERA-Interim reanalysis from 1979 to 2015, GFDL-CM3 historical from 1970 to 2005, and GFDL-CM3 RCP 8.5 from 2006 to 2100. Due to the limited nature of long-term observations and high-resolution modeling in Alaska, these data enable a broad expansion of extremes analysis. This study uses these data to highlight a subset of the 27 climate extremes indices, previously defined by the Expert Team on Climate Change Detection and Indices, as they pertain to climate change in Alaska. These indices are based on the statistical distributions of daily surface temperature and precipitation and focus on threshold exceedance, and percentiles. For example, the annual number of days with a daily maximum temperature greater than 25°C is anticipated to triple in many locations in Alaska by the end of the century. Climate extremes can also refer to long duration events, such as the record-setting warmth that defined the 2015-16 cold season in Alaska. The downscaled climate model simulations indicate that this past winter will be considered normal by as early as the mid-2040s, if we continue to warm according to the business-as-usual RCP 8.5 emissions scenario. This represents an accelerated warming as compared to projections

  1. Arctic Black Carbon Initiative: Reducing Emissions of Black Carbon from Power & Industry in Russia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cresko, J.; Hodson, E. L.; Cheng, M.; Fu, J. S.; Huang, K.; Storey, J.

    2012-12-01

    resolution (2.5° x 2.5° spatial resolution) that a particular region emits BC which deposits in the Russian Arctic. We utilize data from three Arctic measurement stations during the most recent decade: Alert, Northwest Territories, Canada; Barrow, Alaska; and Tiksi Bay, Russia. To understand more about individual Arctic BC sources, we conduct further research to improve inventory estimates of Russian industrial and energy sector BC emissions. By comparing inventory data on power plant locations and emissions from two publically-available databases (EDGAR-HTAP and CARMA databases) to each other and to additional observations from satellites and the AERONET observation network in Russia, we assess the accuracy of the Russian BC emission inventory in EDGAR-HTAP, a commonly used database for atmospheric transport modeling. We then use a global (GEOS-CHEM) atmospheric transport model to quantify the finer spatial distribution of BC within the Arctic. Lastly, we use data on Russian fuel use combined with published emissions factors to build a national-scale model of energy use and associated emissions from critical industrial and heat & power sources of BC. We use this model to estimate the technical potential of reducing BC emissions through proven mitigation efforts such as improvements in energy efficiency and in emission control technologies.

  2. 76 FR 303 - Alaska: Adequacy of Alaska's Municipal Solid Waste Landfill Permit Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-04

    ... AGENCY 40 CFR Parts 239 and 258 Alaska: Adequacy of Alaska's Municipal Solid Waste Landfill Permit... proposes to approve Alaska's modification of its approved Municipal Solid Waste Landfill (MSWLF) permit... Domenic Calabro, Office of Air, Waste, and Toxics, U.S. EPA, Region 10, 1200 Sixth Avenue, Suite 900...

  3. 76 FR 270 - Alaska: Adequacy of Alaska Municipal Solid Waste Landfill Permit Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-01-04

    ... AGENCY 40 CFR Parts 239 and 258 Alaska: Adequacy of Alaska Municipal Solid Waste Landfill Permit Program... modification to Alaska's approved Municipal Solid Waste Landfill (MSWLF) permit program. The approved... 40 CFR 258.4. III. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews This action approves State solid waste...

  4. The United States National Climate Assessment - Alaska Technical Regional Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Markon, Carl J.; Trainor, Sarah F.; Chapin, F. Stuart; Markon, Carl J.; Trainor, Sarah F.; Chapin, F. Stuart

    2012-01-01

    , because cold sea water absorbs CO2 more rapidly than warm water, and a decrease in sea ice extent has allowed increased sea surface exposure and more uptake of CO2 into these northern waters. Ocean acidification will likely affect the ability of organisms to produce and maintain shell material, such as aragonite or calcite (calcium carbonate minerals structured from carbonate ions), required by many shelled organism, from mollusks to corals to microscopic organisms at the base of the food chain. Direct biological effects in Alaska further along the food chain have yet to be studied and may vary among organisms. Some of the potentially most significant changes to Alaska that could result from a changing climate are the effects on the terrestrial cryosphere - particularly glaciers and permafrost. Alaskan glaciers are changing at a rapid rate, the primary driver appearing to be temperature. Statewide, glaciers lost 13 cubic miles of ice annually from the 1950s to the 1990s, and that rate doubled in the 2000s. However, like temperature and precipitation, glacier ice loss is not spatially uniform; most glaciers are losing mass, yet some are growing (for example Hubbard Glacier in southeast Alaska). Alaska glaciers with the most rapid loss are those terminating in sea water or lakes. With this increasing rate of melt, the contribution of surplus fresh water entering into the oceans from Alaska's glaciers, as well as those in neighboring British Columbia, Canada, is approximately 20 percent of that contributed by the Greenland Ice Sheet. Permafrost degradation (that is, the thawing of ice-rich soils) is currently (2012) impacting infrastructure and surface-water availability in areas of both discontinuous and continuous ground ice. Over most of the State, the permafrost is warming, with increasing temperatures broadly consistent with increasing air temperatures. On the Arctic coastal plain of Alaska, permafrost temperatures showed some cooling in the 1950s and 1960s but have

  5. Late Quaternary and future biome simulations for Alaska and Eastern Russia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hendricks, Amy S.

    Arctic biomes across a region including Alaska and Eastern Russia were investigated using the BIOME4 biogeochemical and biogeography vegetation model. This study investigated past (the last 21,000 years), present, and future vegetation distributions in the study area, using climate forcing from five CMIP5 models (CCSM4, GISS-E2-R, MIROC-ESM, MPI-ESM, and MRI-CGCM3). The present-day BIOME4 simulations were generally consistent with current vegetation observations in the study region characterized by evergreen and deciduous taiga and shrub tundras. Paleoclimatological simulations were compared with pollen data samples collected in the study region. Pre-industrial biome simulations are generally similar to the modern reconstruction but differ by having more shrub tundra in both Russia and Alaska to the north, as well as less deciduous taiga in Alaska. Pre-industrial simulations were in good agreement with the pollen data. Mid-Holocene simulations place shrub tundras along the Arctic coast, and in some cases along the eastern coast of Russia. Simulations for the Mid-Holocene are in good agreement with pollen-based distributions of biomes. Simulations for the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) show that the Bering Land Bridge was covered almost entirely by cushion forb, lichen and moss tundra, shrub tundra, and graminoid tundra. Three out of the five models' climate data produce evergreen and deciduous taiga in what is now southwestern Alaska, however the pollen data does not support this. The distributions of cushion forb, lichen, and moss tundra and graminoid tundra differ noticeably between models, while shrub tundra distributions are generally similar. Future simulations of BIOME4 based on the RCP8.5 climate scenario indicate a northward shift of the treeline and a significant areal decrease of shrub tundra and graminoid tundra regions in the 21st century. Intrusions of cool mixed, deciduous, and conifer forests above 60°N, especially in southwest Alaska, were notable

  6. Building University Capacity to Visualize Solutions to Complex Problems in the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broderson, D.; Veazey, P.; Raymond, V. L.; Kowalski, K.; Prakash, A.; Signor, B.

    2016-12-01

    Rapidly changing environments are creating complex problems across the globe, which are particular magnified in the Arctic. These worldwide challenges can best be addressed through diverse and interdisciplinary research teams. It is incumbent on such teams to promote co-production of knowledge and data-driven decision-making by identifying effective methods to communicate their findings and to engage with the public. Decision Theater North (DTN) is a new semi-immersive visualization system that provides a space for teams to collaborate and develop solutions to complex problems, relying on diverse sets of skills and knowledge. It provides a venue to synthesize the talents of scientists, who gather information (data); modelers, who create models of complex systems; artists, who develop visualizations; communicators, who connect and bridge populations; and policymakers, who can use the visualizations to develop sustainable solutions to pressing problems. The mission of Decision Theater North is to provide a cutting-edge visual environment to facilitate dialogue and decision-making by stakeholders including government, industry, communities and academia. We achieve this mission by adopting a multi-faceted approach reflected in the theater's design, technology, networking capabilities, user support, community relationship building, and strategic partnerships. DTN is a joint project of Alaska's National Science Foundation Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (NSF EPSCoR) and the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF), who have brought the facility up to full operational status and are now expanding its development space to support larger team science efforts. Based in Fairbanks, Alaska, DTN is uniquely poised to address changes taking place in the Arctic and subarctic, and is connected with a larger network of decision theaters that include the Arizona State University Decision Theater Network and the McCain Institute in Washington, DC.

  7. 'Nuna', an Earth Science summer camp for rural Alaska middle-school students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gusmeroli, A.; Sturm, R. S.; Burnett, G.; Kopplin, M.; Sparrow, E. B.

    2013-12-01

    Summer camps are a powerful way for scientists to reach out to their communities, share the passion for their research and inspire young talents, who one day may become educators or researchers. In Alaska there is a profound contrast between world leading research institutions located in urban centers, and the geographically remote rural communities, typically underexposed to inspiring scholarly activities. In order to connect the two worlds, in Summer 2013 we initiated 'Nuna', a summer camp in Earth Science for middle-school villagers of the North Slope Borough in Arctic Alaska. The camp was made possible by collaboration between the Ilisagvik College and the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Ten youths from different villages participated in the camp and, led by a professional scientist, engaged in science activities. Most of the activities were inspired by the 'Polar Science and Global Climate' handbook, an International Polar Year resource for education and outreach. In this presentation we share our experience with the goal to inspire dedicated scientists to engage in science outreach activities with resource-poor rural communities.

  8. Seasonal electrical resistivity surveys of a coastal bluff, Barter Island, North Slope Alaska

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swarzenski, Peter W.; Johnson, Cordell; Lorenson, Thomas; Conaway, Christopher H.; Gibbs, Ann E.; Erikson, Li; Richmond, Bruce M.; Waldrop, Mark P.

    2016-01-01

    Select coastal regions of the North Slope of Alaska are experiencing high erosion rates that can be attributed in part to recent warming trends and associated increased storm intensity and frequency. The upper sediment column of the coastal North Slope of Alaska can be described as continuous permafrost underlying a thin (typically less than 1–2 m) active layer that responds variably to seasonal thaw cycles. Assessing the temporal and spatial variability of the active layer and underlying permafrost is essential to better constrain how heightened erosion may impact material fluxes to the atmosphere and the coastal ocean, and how enhanced thaw cycles may impact the stability of the coastal bluffs. In this study, multi-channel electrical resistivity tomography (ERT) was used to image shallow subsurface features of a coastal bluff west of Kaktovik, on Barter Island, northeast Alaska. A comparison of a suite of paired resistivity surveys conducted in early and late summer 2014 provided detailed information on how the active layer and permafrost are impacted during the short Arctic summer. Such results are useful in the development of coastal resilience models that tie together fluvial, terrestrial, climatic, geologic, and oceanographic forcings on shoreline stability.

  9. Atmospheric Bromine in the Arctic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Berg, W.W.; Sperry, P.D.; Rahn, K.A.; Gladney, E.S.

    1983-01-01

    We report the first measurements of both particulate and gas phase bromine in the Arctic troposphere. Data from continuous sampling of the Arctic aerosol over a period of 4 years (1976--1980) indicate that the bromine content in the aerosol averages 6 +- 4 ngBr/SCM (5 +- 3 pptm Br) for 9 months of every year. During the 3-month period between February 15 and May 15, however, we observed an annual sharp maximum in particulate bromine with levels exceeding 100 ngBr/SCM (82 pptm Br). The Arctic aerosol showed no bromine enrichment relative to seawater except for this 3 month peak period. During the bromine maximum, enrichment factors reached 40 with average values near 10. Calculations of the amount of excess bromin