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Sample records for canadian high arctic

  1. Airborne organochlorines in the Canadian High Arctic

    OpenAIRE

    PATTON, G. W.; HINCKLEY, D. A.; Walla, M D; T. F. Bidleman; HARGRAVE, B. T.

    2011-01-01

    In 1984, the Canadian Polar Continental Shelf Project established a research camp on a floating ice island in the Beaufort Sea. The 7 × 4 km island is presently located about 50 km off Ellesmere Island at about 81°N, 100°W. Air samples of 1400–3000 m3 were collected on the island in August-September 1986 and June 1987, using a filter-solid adsorbent train. Organochlorines in melted snow and Arctic Ocean surface water were preconcentrated using solid adsorbent cartridges. Samples were analyzed...

  2. High Methylmercury in Arctic and Subarctic Ponds is Related to Nutrient Levels in the Warming Eastern Canadian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacMillan, Gwyneth A; Girard, Catherine; Chételat, John; Laurion, Isabelle; Amyot, Marc

    2015-07-01

    Permafrost thaw ponds are ubiquitous in the eastern Canadian Arctic, yet little information exists on their potential as sources of methylmercury (MeHg) to freshwaters. They are microbially active and conducive to methylation of inorganic mercury, and are also affected by Arctic warming. This multiyear study investigated thaw ponds in a discontinuous permafrost region in the Subarctic taiga (Kuujjuarapik-Whapmagoostui, QC) and a continuous permafrost region in the Arctic tundra (Bylot Island, NU). MeHg concentrations in thaw ponds were well above levels measured in most freshwater ecosystems in the Canadian Arctic (>0.1 ng L(-1)). On Bylot, ice-wedge trough ponds showed significantly higher MeHg (0.3-2.2 ng L(-1)) than polygonal ponds (0.1-0.3 ng L(-1)) or lakes (waters of Subarctic thaw ponds near Kuujjuarapik (0.1-3.1 ng L(-1)). High water MeHg concentrations in thaw ponds were strongly correlated with variables associated with high inputs of organic matter (DOC, a320, Fe), nutrients (TP, TN), and microbial activity (dissolved CO2 and CH4). Thawing permafrost due to Arctic warming will continue to release nutrients and organic carbon into these systems and increase ponding in some regions, likely stimulating higher water concentrations of MeHg. Greater hydrological connectivity from permafrost thawing may potentially increase transport of MeHg from thaw ponds to neighboring aquatic ecosystems.

  3. Late winter biogeochemical conditions under sea ice in the Canadian High Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helen S. Findlay

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available With the Arctic summer sea-ice extent in decline, questions are arising as to how changes in sea-ice dynamics might affect biogeochemical cycling and phenomena such as carbon dioxide (CO2 uptake and ocean acidification. Recent field research in these areas has concentrated on biogeochemical and CO2 measurements during spring, summer or autumn, but there are few data for the winter or winter–spring transition, particularly in the High Arctic. Here, we present carbon and nutrient data within and under sea ice measured during the Catlin Arctic Survey, over 40 days in March and April 2010, off Ellef Ringnes Island (78° 43.11′ N, 104° 47.44′ W in the Canadian High Arctic. Results show relatively low surface water (1–10 m nitrate (<1.3 µM and total inorganic carbon concentrations (mean±SD=2015±5.83 µmol kg−1, total alkalinity (mean±SD=2134±11.09 µmol kg−1 and under-ice pCO2sw (mean±SD=286±17 µatm. These surprisingly low wintertime carbon and nutrient conditions suggest that the outer Canadian Arctic Archipelago region is nitrate-limited on account of sluggish mixing among the multi-year ice regions of the High Arctic, which could temper the potential of widespread under-ice and open-water phytoplankton blooms later in the season.

  4. Trace element concentrations and gastrointestinal parasites of Arctic terns breeding in the Canadian High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Provencher, J F; Braune, B M; Gilchrist, H G; Forbes, M R; Mallory, M L

    2014-04-01

    Baseline data on trace element concentrations are lacking for many species of Arctic marine birds. We measured essential and non-essential element concentrations in Arctic tern (Sterna paradisaea) liver tissue and brain tissue (mercury only) from Canada's High Arctic, and recorded the presence/absence of gastrointestinal parasites during four different phases of the breeding season. Arctic terns from northern Canada had similar trace element concentrations to other seabird species feeding at the same trophic level in the same region. Concentrations of bismuth, selenium, lead and mercury in Arctic terns were high compared to published threshold values for birds. Selenium and mercury concentrations were also higher in Arctic terns from northern Canada than bird species sampled in other Arctic areas. Selenium, mercury and arsenic concentrations varied across the time periods examined, suggesting potential regional differences in the exposure of biota to these elements. For unknown reasons, selenium concentrations were significantly higher in birds with gastrointestinal parasites as compared to those without parasites, while bismuth concentrations were higher in Arctic terns not infected with gastrointestinal parasites.

  5. Small Thaw Ponds: An Unaccounted Source of Methane in the Canadian High Arctic

    OpenAIRE

    Karita Negandhi; Isabelle Laurion; Whiticar, Michael J; Pierre E Galand; Xiaomei Xu; Connie Lovejoy

    2013-01-01

    Thawing permafrost in the Canadian Arctic tundra leads to peat erosion and slumping in narrow and shallow runnel ponds that surround more commonly studied polygonal ponds. Here we compared the methane production between runnel and polygonal ponds using stable isotope ratios, ¹⁴C signatures, and investigated potential methanogenic communities through high-throughput sequencing archaeal 16S rRNA genes. We found that runnel ponds had significantly higher methane and carbon dioxide emissions, pro...

  6. Three recent ice entrapments of Arctic cetaceans in West Greenland and the eastern Canadian High Arctic

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    MP Heide-Jørgensen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Three ice entrapments of Monodontids have been reported in the western North Atlantic since 1993. Hunters in Disko Bay, West Greenland, discovered one in March 1994 that included about 150 narwhals (Monodon monoceros. The entrapment occurred during a sudden cold period which caused ice to form rapidly. The trapped whales were subject to hunting, but about 50 of the killed whales could not be retrieved in the ice. The whales were trapped in a small opening in the ice and because of that they would probably have succumbed even if not discovered by hunters. Two entrapments involving white whales or belugas (Delphinapterus leucas occurred in the eastern Canadian Arctic in May 1999; one in Lancaster Sound discovered by polar bear (Ursus maritimus researchers and one in Jones Sound discovered by hunters. The first included one bowhead whale (Balaena mysticetus and about 40 belugas that were being preyed upon by polar bears. The second involved at least 170 belugas, of which about 100 were killed by polar bears and 17 were taken by hunters. The entrapments in Disko Bay and Jones Sound both occurred in areas where entrapments have previously been reported, whereas the one in Lancaster Sound was in a new area.

  7. Assessing regional populations of ground-nesting marine birds in the Canadian High Arctic

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    Mark Maftei

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The Queens Channel region of Nunavut is an ecologically distinct area within the Canadian High Arctic consisting of an extensive archipelago of small, low-lying gravel islands throughout which form several localized but highly productive polynyas. We used aerial survey and colony-monitoring data to assess regional- and colony-level fluctuations in the number of birds in this region between 2002 and 2013. Regional and colony-specific monitoring suggested that common eider (Somateria mollissima numbers are increasing, while numbers of Arctic terns (Sterna paradisaea may be in decline. Based on these data, we suggest that even infrequent comprehensive surveys are more useful than annual monitoring at specific sites in generating an accurate assessment of ground-nesting seabird populations at the regional level, and that dramatic fluctuations at individual colonies probably belie the overall stability of regional populations.

  8. Astronomical Sky Quality Near Eureka, in the Canadian High Arctic

    CERN Document Server

    Steinbring, Eric; Drummond, James R

    2011-01-01

    Nighttime visible-light sky brightness and transparency are reported for the Polar Environment Research Laboratory (PEARL), located on a 610-m high ridge near the Eureka research station, on Ellesmere Island, Canada. Photometry of Polaris obtained in V band with the PEARL All Sky Imager (PASI) over two winters is supported by standard meteorological measurements and visual estimates of sky conditions from sea level. These data show that during the period of the study, October through March of 2008/09 and 2009/10, the sky near zenith had a mean surface brightness of 19.7 mag/square-arcsec when the sun was more than 12 deg below the horizon, reaching 20.7 mag/square-arcsec during astronomical darkness with no moon. Skies were without thick cloud and potentially usable for astronomy 86% of the time (extinction <2 mag). Up to 68% of the time was spectroscopic (<0.5 mag), attenuated by ice crystals, or clear with stable atmospheric transparency. Those conditions can persist for over 100 hours at a time. Furt...

  9. Characterizing Near-Infrared Sky Brightness in the Canadian High Arctic

    CERN Document Server

    Sivanandam, Suresh; Abraham, Roberto; Tekatch, Anthony; Steinbring, Eric; Ngan, Wayne; Welch, Doug L; Law, Nicholas M

    2012-01-01

    We present the first measurements of the near-infrared (NIR), specifically the J-band, sky background in the Canadian High Arctic. There has been considerable recent interest in the development of an astronomical observatory in Ellesmere Island; initial site testing has shown promise for a world-class site. Encouragement for our study came from sky background measurements on the high Antarctic glacial plateau in winter that showed markedly lower NIR emission when compared to good mid-latitude astronomical sites due to reduced emission from OH airglow lines. This is possibly a Polar effect and may also be present in the High Arctic. To test this hypothesis, we carried out an experiment which measured the the J-band sky brightness in the High Arctic during winter. We constructed a zenith-pointing, J-band photometer, and installed it at the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL) near Eureka, Nunavut (latitude: 80 degrees N). We present the design of our photometer and our results from our shor...

  10. Evidence of recent changes in the ice regime of lakes in the Canadian High Arctic from spaceborne satellite observations

    OpenAIRE

    Cristina M. Surdu; Duguay, Claude R.; Fernández Prieto, Diego

    2016-01-01

    Arctic lakes, through their ice cover phenology, are a key indicator of climatic changes that the high-latitude environment is experiencing. In the case of lakes in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA), many of which are ice covered more than 10 months per year, warmer temperatures could result in ice regime shifts. Within the dominant polar-desert environment, small local warmer areas have been identified. These relatively small regions – polar oases – with longer growing ...

  11. VLF propagation measurements in the Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lauber, Wilfred R.; Bertrand, Jean M.

    1993-05-01

    For the past three years, during a period of high sun spot numbers, propagation measurements were made on the reception of VLF signals in the Canadian Arctic. Between Aug. and Dec. 1989, the received signal strengths were measured on the Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker, John A. MacDonald in the Eastern Canadian Arctic. Between Jul. 1991 and Jun. 1992, the received signal strengths were measured at Nanisivik, Baffin Island. The purposes of this work were to check the accuracy and estimate variances of the Naval Ocean Systems Center's (NOSC) Long Wave Propagation Capability (LWPC) predictions in the Canadian Arctic and to gather ionospheric storm data. In addition, the NOSC data taken at Fort Smith and our data at Nanisivik were used to test the newly developed Longwave Noise Prediction (LNP) program and the CCIR noise predictions, at 21.4 and 24.0 kHz. The results of the work presented and discussed in this paper show that in general the LWPC predicts accurate values of received signal strength in the Canadian Arctic with standard deviations of 1 to 2 dB over several months. Ionospheric storms can gauge the received signal strengths to decrease some 10 dB for a period of several hours or days. However, the effects of these storms are highly dependent on the propagation path. Finally the new LNP atmospheric noise model predicts lower values of noise in the Arctic than the CCIR model and our limited measurements tend to support these lower values.

  12. New Exoplanet Surveys in the Canadian High Arctic at 80 Degrees North

    CERN Document Server

    Law, Nicholas M; Murowinski, Richard; Carlberg, Raymond; Ngan, Wayne; Salbi, Pegah; Ahmadi, Aida; Steinbring, Eric; Halman, Mark; Graham, James

    2012-01-01

    Observations from near the Eureka station on Ellesmere Island, in the Canadian High Arctic at 80 degrees North, benefit from 24-hour darkness combined with dark skies and long cloud-free periods during the winter. Our first astronomical surveys conducted at the site are aimed at transiting exoplanets; compared to mid-latitude sites, the continuous darkness during the Arctic winter greatly improves the survey's detection efficiency for longer-period transiting planets. We detail the design, construction, and testing of the first two instruments: a robotic telescope, and a set of very wide-field imaging cameras. The 0.5m Dunlap Institute Arctic Telescope has a 0.8-square-degree field of view and is designed to search for potentially habitable exoplanets around low-mass stars. The very wide field cameras have several-hundred-square-degree fields of view pointed at Polaris, are designed to search for transiting planets around bright stars, and were tested at the site in February 2012. Finally, we present a concep...

  13. Pollution in the Summertime Canadian High Arctic observed during NETCARE 2014: Investigation of origin and composition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Köllner, Franziska; Schneider, Johannes; Bozem, Heiko; Hoor, Peter; Willis, Megan; Burkart, Julia; Leaitch, Richard; Abbatt, Jon; Herber, Andreas; Borrmann, Stephan

    2015-04-01

    The clean and sensitive Arctic atmosphere is influenced by transport of air masses from lower latitudes that bring pollution in the form of aerosol particles and trace gases into the Arctic regions. However, the transport processes causing such pollution events are yet not sufficiently well understood. Here we report on results from the aircraft campaign NETCARE 2014 that took place in July 2014 in Resolute Bay, Nunavut (Canada) as part of the "Network on Climate and Aerosols: Addressing Key Uncertainties in Remote Canadian Environment" (NETCARE). These airborne measurements add to only a very few of such measurements conducted in the Arctic during the summertime. The instrumentation on board the research aircraft Polar 6 (operated by the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research) included a large set of physico-chemical aerosol analysis instruments, several trace gas measurements and basic meteorological parameters. Here we focus on observed pollution events that caused elevated trace gas and aerosol concentrations in the summertime Canadian High Arctic between 50 and 3500 m. In order to better understand the chemical composition and the origin of those polluted air masses, we use single particle aerosol composition obtained using the Aircraft-based Laser Ablation Aerosol Mass Spectrometer (ALABAMA), combined with aerosol size distributions and number concentrations from an Optical Particle Counter as well as trace gas measurements of CO and CO2. CO and CO2 are important tracers to study pollution events, which are connected to anthropogenic and non-anthropogenic combustion processes, respectively biomass burning and fossil fuel combustion. The ALABAMA provides a detailed single particle aerosol composition analysis from which we identify different particle types like soot-, biomass burning-, organics-, diesel exhaust- and metallic particles. The measurements were compared to Lagrangian models like FLEXPART and LAGRANTO to find the pollution sources

  14. Characterizing aerosol transport into the Canadian High Arctic using aerosol mass spectrometry and Lagrangian modelling

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    T. Kuhn

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available We report the analysis of measurements made using an aerosol mass spectrometer (AMS; Aerodyne Research Inc. that was installed in the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL in summer 2006. PEARL is located in the Canadian high Arctic at 610 m above sea level on Ellesmere Island (80° N 86° W. PEARL is unique for its remote location in the Arctic and because most of the time it is situated within the free troposphere. It is therefore well suited as a receptor site to study the long range tropospheric transport of pollutants into the Arctic. Some information about the successful year-round operation of an AMS at a high Arctic site such as PEARL will be reported here, together with design considerations for reliable sampling under harsh low-temperature conditions. Computational fluid dynamics calculations were made to ensure that sample integrity was maintained while sampling air at temperatures that average −40 °C in the winter and can be as low as −55 °C. Selected AMS measurements of aerosol mass concentration, size, and chemical composition recorded during the months of August, September and October 2006 will be reported. During this period, sulfate was at most times the predominant aerosol component with on average 0.115 μg m−3 (detection limit 0.003 μg m−3. The second most abundant component was undifferentiated organic aerosol, with on average 0.11 μg m−3 detection limit (0.04 μg m−3. The nitrate component, which averaged 0.007 μg m−3, was above its detection limit (0.002 μg m−3, whereas the ammonium ion had an apparent average concentration of 0.02 μg m−3, which was approximately equal to its detection limit. A few episodes having increased mass concentrations and lasting from several hours to several days are apparent in the data. These were investigated further using a statistical analysis to determine their common

  15. Characterising aerosol transport into the Canadian High Arctic using aerosol mass spectrometry and Lagrangian modelling

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T. Kuhn

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available We report the analysis of measurements made using an aerosol mass spectrometer (AMS; Aerodyne Research Inc. that was installed in the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL in summer 2006. PEARL is located in the Canadian high Arctic at 610 m above sea level on Ellesmere Island (80° N 86° W. PEARL is unique for its remote location in the Arctic and because most of the time it is situated within the free troposphere. It is, therefore, well suited as a receptor site to study the long-range tropospheric transport of pollutants into the Arctic. Some information about the successful year-round operation of an AMS at a high Arctic site such as PEARL will be reported here, together with design considerations for reliable sampling under harsh low-temperature conditions. Computational fluid dynamics calculations were made to ensure that sample integrity was maintained while sampling air at temperatures that average −40 °C in the winter and can be as low as −55 °C. Selected AMS measurements of aerosol mass concentration, size and chemical composition recorded during the months of August, September and October 2006 will be reported. The air temperature was raised to about 20 °C during sampling, but the short residence time in the inlet system (~25 s ensured that less than 10% of semivolatiles such as ammonium nitrate were lost. During this period, sulfate was, at most times, the predominant aerosol component with on average 0.115 μg m−3 (detection limit 0.003 μg m−3. The second most abundant component was undifferentiated organic aerosol, with on average 0.11 μg m−3 (detection limit 0.04 μg m−3. The nitrate component, which averaged 0.007 μg m−3, was above its detection limit (0.002 μg m−3, whereas the ammonium ion had an apparent average concentration of 0.02 μg m−3, which was approximately equal to its detection limit. A few

  16. The Canadian Arctic ACE/OSIRIS Validation Project at PEARL: Validating Satellite Observations Over the High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Kaley A.; Strong, Kimberly; Fogal, Pierre F.; Drummond, James R.

    2016-04-01

    Ground-based measurements provide critical data for the validation of satellite retrievals of atmospheric trace gases and for the assessment of long-term stability of these measurements. As of February 2016, the Canadian-led Atmospheric Chemistry Experiment (ACE) satellite mission has been making measurements of the Earth's atmosphere for nearly twelve years and Canada's Optical Spectrograph and InfraRed Imager System (OSIRIS) instrument on the Odin satellite has been operating for fourteen years. As ACE and OSIRIS operations have extended beyond their planned two-year missions, there is an ongoing need to validate the trace gas data profiles from the ACE-Fourier Transform Spectrometer (ACE-FTS), the Measurement of Aerosol Extinction in the Stratosphere and Troposphere Retrieved by Occultation (ACE-MAESTRO) and OSIRIS. In particular, validation comparisons are needed during Arctic springtime to understand better the measurements of species involved in stratospheric ozone chemistry. To this end, thirteen Canadian Arctic ACE/OSIRIS Validation Campaigns have been conducted during the spring period (February - April in 2004 - 2016) at the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL) in Eureka, Nunavut (80N, 86W). For the past decade, these campaigns have been undertaken in collaboration with the Canadian Network for the Detection of Atmospheric Change (CANDAC). The spring period coincides with the most chemically active time of year in the Arctic, as well as a significant number of satellite overpasses. A suite of as many as 12 ground-based instruments, as well as frequent balloon-borne ozonesonde and radiosonde launches, have been used in each campaign. These instruments include: a ground-based version of the ACE-FTS (PARIS - Portable Atmospheric Research Interferometric Spectrometer), a terrestrial version of the ACE-MAESTRO, a SunPhotoSpectrometer, two CANDAC zenith-viewing UV-visible grating spectrometers, a Bomem DA8 Fourier transform spectrometer

  17. Resource utilisation by deep-sea megabenthos in the Canadian High Arctic (Baffin Bay and Parry Channel)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourgeois, Solveig; Witte, Ursula; Harrison, Ailish M.; Makela, Anni; Kazanidis, Georgios; Archambault, Philippe

    2016-04-01

    Ongoing climate change in the Arctic is causing drastic alteration of the Arctic marine ecosystem functioning, such as shifts in patterns of primary production, and modifying the present tight pelagic-benthic coupling. Subsequently benthic communities, which rely upon organic matter produced in the top layers of the Ocean, will also be affected by these changes. The benthic megafaunal communities play a significant role in ecological processes and ecosystem functioning (i.e. organic matter recycling, bioturbation, food source for the higher trophic levels…). Yet, information is scarce regarding the main food sources for dominant benthic organisms, and therefore the impact of the ongoing changes is difficult to assess. The goal of this study is to investigate the preferential feeding of different carbon sources by megabenthic organisms in the Canadian High Arctic and to identify environmental drivers which explain the observed trends. In summer 2013, benthic megafauna was collected at 9 stations spread along latitudinal (58 to 81°N) and longitudinal (62 to 114°W) transects in the Baffin Bay and Parry Channel, respectively. Carbon and nitrogen bulk stable isotope analyses (δ13C and δ15N) were performed on several species divided into groups according to their feeding type. This study highlights distinct trends in δ13C values of benthic organisms suggesting the importance of both phytoplankton and ice algae as carbon sources for megafauna in the Canadian High Arctic. The importance of physical and biological parameters as drivers of food web structure will be furthermore discussed.

  18. Cloud identification in the Canadian High Arctic using the UV-visible colour index

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Xiaoyi; Adams, Cristen; Strong, Kimberly; Duck, Thomas; Perro, Chris; Hudak, David; Rodriguez, Peter

    2014-05-01

    In UV-visible spectroscopy, Rayleigh and Mie scattering contribute to the broadband extinction seen in spectra of scattered sunlight. The relative intensity of these two components of scattering is highly dependent on the cloud condition of the sky. The colour index, defined as the ratio of light intensities at different wavelengths, typically 350 nm and 550 nm, provides a means of determining the cloud conditions. A UV-visible triple-grating spectrometer, the UT-GBS (University of Toronto Ground-Based Spectrometer), was installed at the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL), at Eureka in the Canadian High Arctic (86.4°W, 80.1°N) in 1999. Since then, the instrument has made daily measurements during spring from 1999-2009, and year-round, with the exception of polar night, from 2010-2013. The UT-GBS measures vertical column densities of ozone, NO2, and BrO, as well as slant column densities of enhanced OClO, by using the Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy (DOAS) technique. We use the colour index data from the UT-GBS to distinguish polar stratospheric clouds and tropospheric clouds. The UV-visible measurements are supplemented by vertically resolved lidar and radar cloud data products. The CANDAC (Canadian Network for the Detection of Atmospheric Change) Rayleigh-Mie-Raman Lidar (CRL) and the Millimetre Cloud Radar (MMCR) are located at the Zero Altitude PEARL Auxiliary Laboratory (0PAL), which is about 15 km away from PEARL. The CRL uses ultra-short pulses of light from two lasers, operating at ultraviolet (355 nm) and visible (532 nm) wavelengths. The CRL measures the vertical distribution of aerosols, temperature, and water vapour in the troposphere and lower stratosphere. The zenith-pointing MMCR measures equivalent radar reflectivity, Doppler velocity, spectral width, and Doppler spectra, from which information about cloud heights, thicknesses, internal structure and vertical motions can be determined. Polar stratospheric cloud

  19. Persistent organic pollutant and mercury concentrations in eggs of ground-nesting marine birds in the Canadian high Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peck, Liam E; Gilchrist, H Grant; Mallory, Conor D; Braune, Birgit M; Mallory, Mark L

    2016-06-15

    We collected eggs of eight marine bird species from several colony sites in the Canadian high Arctic located at approximately 76°N and analyzed them for concentrations of legacy persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and mercury. We provide the first report on concentrations of POPs in eggs of three Arctic species (Thayer's gull Larus thayeri, Sabine's gull Xema sabini, Ross's Gull Rhodostethia rosea), and we found significant differences in each of the POP profiles among the five species with sufficient data for statistical comparisons (Thayer's gull, black guillemot Cepphus grylle, Sabine's gull, Arctic tern Sterna paradisaea and common eider Somateria mollissima borealis). The Ross's Gull had unexpectedly high POP concentrations relative to the other species examined, although this was based on a single egg, while glaucous gull Larus hyperboreus eggs from our sampling location had very low POPs. Sabine's gulls had the lowest Hg of the eggs studied, consistent with their low trophic position, but concentrations of their legacy POPs were higher than expected. We also noted that total hexachlorocyclohexanes were higher than reported elsewhere in the circumpolar Arctic in three species. PMID:26971212

  20. Ten-year trends of atmospheric mercury in the high Arctic compared to Canadian sub-Arctic and mid-latitude sites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cole, A. S.; Steffen, A.; Pfaffhuber, K. A.; Berg, T.; Pilote, M.; Poissant, L.; Tordon, R.; Hung, H.

    2013-02-01

    Global emissions of mercury continue to change at the same time as the Arctic is experiencing ongoing climatic changes. Continuous monitoring of atmospheric mercury provides important information about long-term trends in the balance between transport, chemistry, and deposition of this pollutant in the Arctic atmosphere. Ten-year records of total gaseous mercury (TGM) from 2000 to 2009 were analyzed from two high Arctic sites at Alert (Nunavut, Canada) and Zeppelin Station (Svalbard, Norway); one sub-Arctic site at Kuujjuarapik (Nunavik, Québec, Canada); and three temperate Canadian sites at St. Anicet (Québec), Kejimkujik (Nova Scotia) and Egbert (Ontario). Five of the six sites examined showed a decreasing trend over this time period. Overall trend estimates at high latitude sites were: -0.9% yr-1 (95% confidence limits: -1.4, 0) at Alert and no trend (-0.5, +0.7) at Zeppelin Station. Faster decreases were observed at the remainder of the sites: -2.1% yr-1 (-3.1, -1.1) at Kuujjuarapik, -1.9% yr-1 (-2.1, -1.8) at St. Anicet, -1.6% yr-1 (-2.4, -1.0) at Kejimkujik and -2.2% yr-1 (-2.8, -1.7) at Egbert. Trends at the sub-Arctic and mid-latitude sites agree with reported decreases in background TGM concentration since 1996 at Mace Head, Ireland, and Cape Point, South Africa, but conflict with estimates showing an increase in global anthropogenic emissions over a similar period. Trends in TGM at the two high Arctic sites were not only less negative (or neutral) overall but much more variable by season. Possible reasons for differences in seasonal and overall trends at the Arctic sites compared to those at lower latitudes are discussed, as well as implications for the Arctic mercury cycle. The first calculations of multi-year trends in reactive gaseous mercury (RGM) and total particulate mercury (TPM) at Alert were also performed, indicating increases from 2002 to 2009 in both RGM and TPM in the spring when concentrations are highest.

  1. Ten-year trends of atmospheric mercury in the high Arctic compared to Canadian sub-Arctic and mid-latitude sites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. S. Cole

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Global emissions of mercury continue to change at the same time as the Arctic is experiencing ongoing climatic changes. Continuous monitoring of atmospheric mercury provides important information about long-term trends in the balance between transport, chemistry, and deposition of this pollutant in the Arctic atmosphere. Ten-year records of total gaseous mercury (TGM were analyzed from two high Arctic sites at Alert (Nunavut, Canada and Zeppelin Station (Svalbard, Norway; one sub-Arctic site at Kuujjuarapik (Nunavik, Québec, Canada; and three temperate Canadian sites at St. Anicet (Québec, Kejimkujik (Nova Scotia and Egbert (Ontario. Five of the six sites examined show a decreasing trend over this time period. Overall trend estimates at high latitude sites were: −0.9% yr−1 (95% confidence limits: −1.4, 0 at Alert and no trend (−0.5, +0.7 at Zeppelin Station. Faster decreases were observed at the remainder of the sites: −2.1% yr−1 (−3.1, −1.1 at Kuujjuarapik, −1.9% yr−1 (−2.1, −1.8 at St. Anicet, −1.6% yr−1 (−2.4, −1.0 at Kejimkujik and −2.2% yr−1 (−2.8, −1.7 at Egbert. Trends at the sub-Arctic and mid-latitude sites agree with reported decreases in background TGM concentration since 1996 at Mace Head, Ireland, and Cape Point, South Africa, but conflict with estimates showing an increase in global anthropogenic emissions over a similar period. Trends in TGM at the two high Arctic sites were not only less negative (or neutral overall but much more variable by season. Possible reasons for differences in seasonal and overall trends at the Arctic sites compared to those at lower latitudes are discussed, as well as implications for the Arctic mercury cycle. The first calculations of multi-year trends in reactive gaseous mercury (RGM and total particulate mercury (TPM at Alert were also performed, indicating increases from 2002 to 2009 in both RGM and TPM

  2. Ten-year trends of atmospheric mercury in the high Arctic compared to Canadian sub-Arctic and mid-latitude sites

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. S. Cole

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Global emissions of mercury continue to change at the same time as the Arctic is experiencing ongoing climatic changes. Continuous monitoring of atmospheric mercury provides important information about long-term trends in the balance between transport, chemistry, and deposition of this pollutant in the Arctic atmosphere. Ten-year records of total gaseous mercury (TGM from 2000 to 2009 were analyzed from two high Arctic sites at Alert (Nunavut, Canada and Zeppelin Station (Svalbard, Norway; one sub-Arctic site at Kuujjuarapik (Nunavik, Québec, Canada; and three temperate Canadian sites at St. Anicet (Québec, Kejimkujik (Nova Scotia and Egbert (Ontario. Five of the six sites examined showed a decreasing trend over this time period. Overall trend estimates at high latitude sites were: −0.9% yr−1 (95% confidence limits: −1.4, 0 at Alert and no trend (−0.5, +0.7 at Zeppelin Station. Faster decreases were observed at the remainder of the sites: −2.1% yr−1 (−3.1, −1.1 at Kuujjuarapik, −1.9% yr−1 (−2.1, −1.8 at St. Anicet, −1.6% yr−1 (−2.4, −1.0 at Kejimkujik and −2.2% yr−1 (−2.8, −1.7 at Egbert. Trends at the sub-Arctic and mid-latitude sites agree with reported decreases in background TGM concentration since 1996 at Mace Head, Ireland, and Cape Point, South Africa, but conflict with estimates showing an increase in global anthropogenic emissions over a similar period. Trends in TGM at the two high Arctic sites were not only less negative (or neutral overall but much more variable by season. Possible reasons for differences in seasonal and overall trends at the Arctic sites compared to those at lower latitudes are discussed, as well as implications for the Arctic mercury cycle. The first calculations of multi-year trends in reactive gaseous mercury (RGM and total particulate mercury (TPM at Alert were also performed, indicating increases from 2002 to 2009

  3. Factors affecting biotic mercury concentrations and biomagnification through lake food webs in the Canadian high Arctic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In temperate regions of Canada, mercury (Hg) concentrations in biota and the magnitude of Hg biomagnification through food webs vary between neighboring lakes and are related to water chemistry variables and physical lake features. However, few studies have examined factors affecting the variable Hg concentrations in landlocked Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) or the biomagnification of Hg through their food webs. We estimated the food web structure of six high Arctic lakes near Resolute Bay, Nunavut, Canada, using stable carbon (δ13C) and nitrogen (δ15N) isotopes and measured Hg (total Hg (THg) in char, the only fish species, and methylmercury (MeHg) in chironomids and zooplankton) concentrations in biota collected in 2010 and 2011. Across lakes, δ13C showed that benthic carbon (chironomids) was the dominant food source for char. Regression models of log Hg versus δ15N (of char and benthic invertebrates) showed positive and significant slopes, indicting Hg biomagnification in all lakes, and higher slopes in some lakes than others. However, no principal components (PC) generated using all water chemistry data and physical characteristics of the lakes predicted the different slopes. The PC dominated by aqueous ions was a negative predictor of MeHg concentrations in chironomids, suggesting that water chemistry affects Hg bioavailability and MeHg concentrations in these lower-trophic-level organisms. Furthermore, regression intercepts were predicted by the PCs dominated by catchment area, aqueous ions, and MeHg. Weaker relationships were also found between THg in small char or MeHg in pelagic invertebrates and the PCs dominated by catchment area, and aqueous nitrate and MeHg. Results from these high Arctic lakes suggest that Hg biomagnification differs between systems and that their physical and chemical characteristics affect Hg concentrations in lower-trophic-level biota. - Highlights: • Mercury (Hg) in Arctic char and invertebrates from 6 Arctic lakes were

  4. Factors affecting biotic mercury concentrations and biomagnification through lake food webs in the Canadian high Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lescord, Gretchen L., E-mail: glescord@gmail.com [University of New Brunswick/Canadian Rivers Institute, 100 Tucker Park Rd, Saint John, NB E2L 4A6 (Canada); Kidd, Karen A. [University of New Brunswick/Canadian Rivers Institute, 100 Tucker Park Rd, Saint John, NB E2L 4A6 (Canada); Kirk, Jane L. [Environment Canada, Aquatic Contaminants Research Division, 867 Lakeshore Rd, Burlington, ON L7S 1A1 (Canada); O' Driscoll, Nelson J. [Acadia University, 15 University Ave, Wolfville, NS B4P 2R6 (Canada); Wang, Xiaowa; Muir, Derek C.G. [Environment Canada, Aquatic Contaminants Research Division, 867 Lakeshore Rd, Burlington, ON L7S 1A1 (Canada)

    2015-03-15

    In temperate regions of Canada, mercury (Hg) concentrations in biota and the magnitude of Hg biomagnification through food webs vary between neighboring lakes and are related to water chemistry variables and physical lake features. However, few studies have examined factors affecting the variable Hg concentrations in landlocked Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) or the biomagnification of Hg through their food webs. We estimated the food web structure of six high Arctic lakes near Resolute Bay, Nunavut, Canada, using stable carbon (δ{sup 13}C) and nitrogen (δ{sup 15}N) isotopes and measured Hg (total Hg (THg) in char, the only fish species, and methylmercury (MeHg) in chironomids and zooplankton) concentrations in biota collected in 2010 and 2011. Across lakes, δ{sup 13}C showed that benthic carbon (chironomids) was the dominant food source for char. Regression models of log Hg versus δ{sup 15}N (of char and benthic invertebrates) showed positive and significant slopes, indicting Hg biomagnification in all lakes, and higher slopes in some lakes than others. However, no principal components (PC) generated using all water chemistry data and physical characteristics of the lakes predicted the different slopes. The PC dominated by aqueous ions was a negative predictor of MeHg concentrations in chironomids, suggesting that water chemistry affects Hg bioavailability and MeHg concentrations in these lower-trophic-level organisms. Furthermore, regression intercepts were predicted by the PCs dominated by catchment area, aqueous ions, and MeHg. Weaker relationships were also found between THg in small char or MeHg in pelagic invertebrates and the PCs dominated by catchment area, and aqueous nitrate and MeHg. Results from these high Arctic lakes suggest that Hg biomagnification differs between systems and that their physical and chemical characteristics affect Hg concentrations in lower-trophic-level biota. - Highlights: • Mercury (Hg) in Arctic char and invertebrates

  5. Multiple climatic signals inferred from the varved sediments of a coastal lake in the Canadian High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amann, Benjamin; Lamoureux, Scott F.

    2016-04-01

    The Arctic is extremely sensitive to climate change, and an influential part of the global climate system. However, the assessment of climate change and impacts from the Arctic remains a challenge mainly due to short and sparse meteorological records. In this context, data from natural paleoclimate archives are fundamental to place climate variability into perspective and assess the sensitivity of Earth's climate to natural and anthropogenic forcings. In particular, Arctic lakes are excellent potential archives. They are sensitive to extreme seasonal variations in surface processes and have a limited direct human impact. Nevertheless, the study of Arctic lakes is an analytical and technical challenge because: (i) limnological information are often lacking due to difficult accessibility; (ii) 210Pb inventories are low and terrestrial macrofossils for 14C dating are rare, which limits the development of precise sediment chronologies; and (iii) sediment accumulation rates are often low, which may restrict the temporal resolution and length of the paleoclimate records. Here, we present a high-resolution record from the varved sediments (annual laminations) of a saline coastal lake located in the Canadian High Arctic (unofficial name Chevalier Lake; Melville Island, NT). The particular interest of this location is the catchment area: 152 times larger than the lake area (Ac = 350 km²; AL = 2.3 km²). This particularity generates high sedimentation rates, atypical of previously studied arctic lakes. Two sediment cores were recovered from the centre and a more proximal zone of the lake. We used microstratigraphy supported by X-ray fluorescence data (Zr/K for particle size, Fe/Rb for the winter clay cap distinction) to develop a precise and cross-dated varve chronology covering the last 400 years. Dating of the uppermost section could be validated with preliminary 137Cs data. Stratigraphical analysis reveals the presence of three sediment units within the meter

  6. Arctic response strategy: Canadian Coast Guard

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The revision of the Canadian Coast Guard's Arctic response strategy was described with particular focus on the consultative method used to ensure that all perspectives were taken into consideration. Some tankers used to re-supply fuel to remote Arctic communities carry more than 30,000 tonnes of product, putting them at risk for major spills. The Arctic response strategy was revised to emphasize recommendations for prevention, preparedness and response. Prevention was recognized as the most effective solution to oil spills in the Arctic. The leadership and coordination roles of the Canadian Coast Guard were demonstrated in relation to ship-source oil pollution. The new strategy also outlined the equipment requirements needed to respond to a large spill in the Arctic. Categorization of spill sizes as tier 1 to 4 was determined by examining southern regimes as was the characterization of corresponding equipment. Implementation of the new recommendations of the revised Arctic response strategy will take place over the next 2 years. The prevention aspect will include some legislative changes or stricter guidelines

  7. Impacts of Human Activity on the Microbial Communities of Devon Island, Canadian High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bywaters, K. B.; Burton, A. S.; Wallace, S. L.; Glass, B. J.

    2016-09-01

    The impacts of human activities on microbial communities in arctic environments are poorly understood. This project compares the distribution of microbes at the HMP Mars analog site prior to and after human settlement.

  8. Landscape and Hydrological Transformation in the Canadian High Arctic: Climate Change and Permafrost Degradation As Drivers of Change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamoureux, S. F.; Lafreniere, M. J.

    2014-12-01

    Recent climate warming and landscape instability arising from permafrost degradation in the Canadian High Arctic have resulted in significant changes to the hydrological system. We have undertaken an integrated watershed and permafrost research program at the Cape Bounty Arctic Watershed Observatory (75°N, 109°W) in paired watershed-lake systems to assess the impact of these changes. Research has captured hydrological changes resulting from exceptional warmth, and permafrost degradation and disturbance. Results highlight the contrasting effect of thermal (deeper soil thaw) versus physical perturbation (slope failures and permafrost degradation). Thermal perturbation applies to most of the landscape, and results indicate that ground ice melt alters flow and mobilizes solutes for a number of years following a single warm year. These effects are measureable at the slope-catchment scale, especially during baseflow. By contrast, physical disturbance is highly localized and produces high sediment and particulate carbon erosion from slopes, but downstream particulate delivery is dependent on surface connectivity. Recovery from disturbances appears to occur rapidly, and continued geomorphic change and new slope channels result in sustained delivery of particulates to channels. The result is increased long term landscape heterogeneity with respect to erosion compared to the pre-disturbance condition. Downstream channel response to particulate loading further dampens the response to physical disturbance through channel storage of material. Hence, at the larger watershed scale, the effect of physical perturbation is minimal in the initial years of recovery. These results point to a landscape that has been substantially impacted by recent hydrological and permafrost changes. Understanding and distinguishing these impacts provides a basis for systematically evaluating biogeochemical cycling and ecosystem responses in aquatic settings.

  9. Synchronous starphotometry and lidar measurements at Eureka in High Canadian Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Baibakov

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available We present recent progress related to the night-time retrievals of aerosol and cloud optical depth using starphotometry over the PEARL (Polar Environmental Atmospheric Research Laboratory station at Eureka (Nunavut, Canada in the High Arctic (80° N, 86° W. In the spring of 2011 and 2012, the SPSTAR starphotometer was employed to acquire aerosol optical depth (AOD measurements while vertical aerosol and cloud backscatter coefficient profiles were acquired using the CANDAC Raman Lidar (CRL. Several events were detected and characterized using starphotometry-lidar synergy: aerosols (short term aerosol events on 9 and 10 March 2011; a potential multi-night aerosol event across three polar nights (13–15 March 2012, a thin cloud event (21 February 2011 and a very low altitude ice crystals (10 March 2011. Using a simple backscatter coefficient threshold criterion we calculated fine and coarse (sub and super-micron mode AODs from the vertically integrated CRL profiles. These were compared with their starphotometry analogues produced from a spectral deconvolution algorithm. The process-level analysis showed, in general, good agreement in terms of the physical coherence between high frequency starphotometry and lidar data. We argue that R2 (coefficient of determination is the most robust means of comparing lidar and starphotometer data since it is sensitive to significant optico-physical variations associated with these two independent data sources while being minimally dependent on retrieval and calibration artifacts. Differences between the fine and course mode components of the starphotometry and lidar data is clearly also useful but is more dependent on such artifacts. Studying climatological seasonal aerosol trends necessitates effective cloud-screening procedures: temporal and spectral cloud screening of starphotometry data was found to agree moderately well with temporal cloud screening results except in the presence of thin homogeneous cloud

  10. Metagenomic Analysis of the Bioremediation of Diesel-Contaminated Canadian High Arctic Soils

    OpenAIRE

    Yergeau, Etienne; Sanschagrin, Sylvie; Beaumier, Danielle; Greer, Charles W.

    2012-01-01

    As human activity in the Arctic increases, so does the risk of hydrocarbon pollution events. On site bioremediation of contaminated soil is the only feasible clean up solution in these remote areas, but degradation rates vary widely between bioremediation treatments. Most previous studies have focused on the feasibility of on site clean-up and very little attention has been given to the microbial and functional communities involved and their ecology. Here, we ask the question: which microorga...

  11. Composition and meteorological changes associated with a strong stratospheric intrusion event in the Canadian High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Xiaoyi; Strong, Kimberly; Conway, Stephanie; Tarasick, David; Osman, Mohammed; Richter, Andreas; Blechschmidt, Anne; Manney, Gloria

    2015-04-01

    Stratosphere-troposphere exchange (STE) provides a mechanism for trace gas transport between the lower stratosphere and the troposphere. Intense downward stratospheric intrusions may significantly affect the oxidizing capacity of the troposphere. Most STE events occur in tropical and mid-latitude regions, with less known about STE in the polar regions. In this work, we present an observation and modelling study of a strong stratospheric intrusion in the high Arctic (Eureka, 80°N) in March 2013, which led to an increase of total ozone and BrO columns observed by both ground-based and satellite instruments. The meteorological conditions for this event were similar to those observed for STEs associated with cold fronts. Before the cold front arrived at Eureka, the surface temperature first increased from -25.3°C (25 March 13:00 UTC) to -14.5°C (27 March 20:00 UTC) and then dropped to -36.4°C (29 March 6:00 UTC) after the front passed by. Meanwhile, the ground-level pressure decreased from 103.8 kPa to 101.8 kPa, then rose back to 102.6 kPa. Ozonesonde data (27 March 23:15 UTC) showed unusually high ozone (>100 ppbv) above ~3 km altitude, while the relative humidity profile indicated that the airmass was of stratospheric origin (very low relative humidity). The thermal tropopause height was ~9 km, based on a uniform lapse rate of 3.9 K/km from surface to 9 km. From ECMWF Interim data, the airmass with high relative potential vorticity (4 pvu) extended down to 3 km. In addition, HYSPLIT model ensemble back-trajectories show a clear Rossby wave signature in the upper troposphere during this event, which could explain the intrusion. However, there are no strong downwelling layers along the trajectories, which indicates that the intrusion may have occurred close to Eureka. Trace gas composition data from three ground-based spectrometers and the GOME-2 satellite instrument are presented in this work. Ozone vertical column densities (VCDs) measured by two Zenith

  12. Metagenomic analysis of the bioremediation of diesel-contaminated Canadian high arctic soils.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Etienne Yergeau

    Full Text Available As human activity in the Arctic increases, so does the risk of hydrocarbon pollution events. On site bioremediation of contaminated soil is the only feasible clean up solution in these remote areas, but degradation rates vary widely between bioremediation treatments. Most previous studies have focused on the feasibility of on site clean-up and very little attention has been given to the microbial and functional communities involved and their ecology. Here, we ask the question: which microorganisms and functional genes are abundant and active during hydrocarbon degradation at cold temperature? To answer this question, we sequenced the soil metagenome of an ongoing bioremediation project in Alert, Canada through a time course. We also used reverse-transcriptase real-time PCR (RT-qPCR to quantify the expression of several hydrocarbon-degrading genes. Pseudomonas species appeared as the most abundant organisms in Alert soils right after contamination with diesel and excavation (t = 0 and one month after the start of the bioremediation treatment (t = 1m, when degradation rates were at their highest, but decreased after one year (t = 1y, when residual soil hydrocarbons were almost depleted. This trend was also reflected in hydrocarbon degrading genes, which were mainly affiliated with Gammaproteobacteria at t = 0 and t = 1m and with Alphaproteobacteria and Actinobacteria at t = 1y. RT-qPCR assays confirmed that Pseudomonas and Rhodococcus species actively expressed hydrocarbon degradation genes in Arctic biopile soils. Taken together, these results indicated that biopile treatment leads to major shifts in soil microbial communities, favoring aerobic bacteria that can degrade hydrocarbons.

  13. Virgibacillus arcticus sp. nov., a moderately halophilic, endospore-forming bacterium from permafrost in the Canadian high Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niederberger, Thomas D; Steven, Blaire; Charvet, Sophie; Barbier, Beatrice; Whyte, Lyle G

    2009-09-01

    A novel, moderately halophilic, endospore-forming bacterial strain, designated Hal 1T, was isolated from a permafrost core collected from the Canadian high Arctic. The temperature for growth of strain Hal 1T was 0-30 degrees C with no growth observed at either -5 or 37 degrees C (optimum growth at about 25 degrees C). Strain Hal 1T was able to grow at NaCl concentrations of 0-20% (w/v) and did not have an absolute NaCl requirement for growth; optimal growth was at 5% (w/v) NaCl. The level of 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity between strain Hal 1T and the type strains of Virgibacillus carmonensis and Virgibacillus necropolis was 98.2%; values with respect to the type strains of other recognized Virgibacillus species were below 96.0%. The DNA G+C content of strain Hal 1T was 38.2 mol%. Levels of DNA-DNA relatedness between strain Hal 1T and the type strains of V. carmonensis and V. necropolis were 14.0 and 21.0%, respectively. The major fatty acid of strain Hal 1T was anteiso-C15:0, consistent with species of the genus Virgibacillus. The cell-wall peptidoglycan of strain Hal 1T was type A1alpha and the major respiratory quinone was MK-7. On the basis of genotypic and physiological results, strain Hal 1T (=DSM 19574T=JCM 14839T) is proposed as the type strain of a novel species of the genus Virgibacillus, namely Virgibacillus arcticus sp. nov. PMID:19605723

  14. Microbial diversity of active layer and permafrost in an acidic wetland from the Canadian High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilhelm, Roland C; Niederberger, Thomas D; Greer, Charles; Whyte, Lyle G

    2011-04-01

    The abundance and structure of archaeal and bacterial communities from the active layer and the associated permafrost of a moderately acidic (pH Canada) were investigated using culture- and molecular-based methods. Aerobic viable cell counts from the active layer were ∼100-fold greater than those from the permafrost (2.5 × 10(5) CFU·(g soil dry mass)(-1)); however, a greater diversity of isolates were cultured from permafrost, as determined by 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Isolates from both layers demonstrated growth characteristics of a psychrotolerant, halotolerant, and acidotolerant community. Archaea constituted 0.1% of the total 16S rRNA gene copy number and, in the 16S rRNA gene clone library, predominantly (71% and 95%) consisted of Crenarchaeota related to Group I. 1b. In contrast, bacterial communities were diverse (Shannon's diversity index, H = ∼4), with Acidobacteria constituting the largest division of active layer clones (30%) and Actinobacteria most abundant in permafrost (28%). Direct comparisons of 16S rRNA gene sequence data highlighted significant differences between the bacterial communities of each layer, with the greatest differences occurring within Actinobacteria. Comparisons of 16S rRNA gene sequences with those from other Arctic permafrost and cold-temperature wetlands revealed commonly occurring taxa within the phyla Chloroflexi, Acidobacteria, and Actinobacteria (families Intrasporangiaceae and Rubrobacteraceae). PMID:21491982

  15. A case study of a transported bromine explosion event in the Canadian high arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, X.; Strong, K.; Adams, C.; Schofield, R.; Yang, X.; Richter, A.; Friess, U.; Blechschmidt, A.-M.; Koo, J.-H.

    2016-01-01

    Ozone depletion events in the polar troposphere have been linked to extremely high concentrations of bromine, known as bromine explosion events (BEE). However, the optimum meteorological conditions for the occurrence of these events remain uncertain. On 4-5 April 2011, a combination of both blowing snow and a stable shallow boundary layer was observed during a BEE at Eureka, Canada (86.4°W, 80.1°N). Measurements made by a Multi-Axis Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy spectrometer were used to retrieve BrO profiles and partial columns. During this event, the near-surface BrO volume mixing ratio increased to ~20 parts per trillion by volume, while ozone was depleted to ~1 ppbv from the surface to 700 m. Back trajectories and Global Ozone Monitoring Experiment-2 satellite tropospheric BrO columns confirmed that this event originated from a bromine explosion over the Beaufort Sea. From 30 to 31 March, meteorological data showed high wind speeds (24 m/s) and elevated boundary layer heights (~800 m) over the Beaufort Sea. Long-distance transportation (~1800 km over 5 days) to Eureka indicated strong recycling of BrO within the bromine plume. This event was generally captured by a global chemistry-climate model when a sea-salt bromine source from blowing snow was included. A model sensitivity study indicated that the surface BrO at Eureka was controlled by both local photochemistry and boundary layer dynamics. Comparison of the model results with both ground-based and satellite measurements confirmed that the BEE observed at Eureka was triggered by transport of enhanced BrO from the Beaufort Sea followed by local production/recycling under stable atmospheric shallow boundary layer conditions.

  16. Sea ice in the Canadian Arctic in the 21. century

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Climate warming will occur first and most intensely in Arctic regions, according to the numerical simulations of future climate performed with different Global Climate Models (GCMs). It includes the simulations performed by the Meteorological Service of Canada. The observations gathered in the Arctic indicate that the present warming has no precedent over the past four hundred years. Since the 1970s, data acquired mainly by satellite indicates that the extent of Arctic sea ice decreased at a rate of approximately three per cent per decade. Over the period 1969-2000, a similar rate of decrease has been observed within Canadian Arctic waters. Over the past forty years, estimates of the thickness of ice in the Arctic, based on submarine measurements, show a 40 per cent decrease. By 2050, if all the conditions remain as they are, the Arctic Ocean could be ice free. The most widely held scientific opinion seems to be that in the future there will be less ice in the Arctic than what was observed in the past, an opinion that is still being debated by scientists. The development of local natural resources and trans-shipment between Europe and Asia could increase dramatically in a future with less ice. Marine transportation in the Canadian Arctic would be expanded. Climatological analysis results of Canadian ice information is presented by the authors, and they have chosen to discuss various probable scenarios related to ice conditions during this century. 13 refs., 8 figs

  17. A trajectory analysis of atmospheric transport of black carbon aerosols to Canadian High Arctic in winter and spring (1990–2005

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Huang

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Black carbon (BC particles accumulated in the Arctic troposphere and deposited over snow have significant effects on radiative forcing of the Arctic regional climate. Applying cluster analysis technique on 10-day backward trajectories, transport pathways affecting Alert (82.5° N, 62.5° W, Nunavut in Canada are identified in this work, along with the associated transport frequency. Based on the atmospheric transport frequency and the estimated BC emission intensity from surrounding regions, a linear regression model is constructed to investigate the inter-annual variations of BC observed at Alert in January and April, representative of winter and spring respectively, between 1990 and 2005. Strong correlations are found between BC concentrations predicted with the regression model and measured at Alert for both seasons (R2 equals 0.77 and 0.81 for winter and spring, respectively. Results imply that atmospheric transport and BC emission are the major contributors to the inter-annual variations in BC concentrations observed at Alert in the cold seasons for the 16-year period. Based on the regression model the relative contributions of regional BC emissions affecting Alert are attributed to the Eurasian sector, composed of the European Union and the former USSR, and the North American sector. Considering both seasons, the model suggests that Eurasia is the major contributor to the near-surface BC levels at the Canadian High Arctic site with an average contribution of over 85% during the 16-year period. In winter, the atmospheric transport of BC aerosols from Eurasia is found to be even more predominant with a multi-year average of 94%. The model estimates smaller contribution from the Eurasian sector in spring (70% than that in winter. It is also found that the change in Eurasian contributions depends mainly on the reduction of emission intensity, while the changes in both emission and atmospheric transport contributed to the

  18. A trajectory analysis of atmospheric transport of black carbon aerosols to Canadian high Arctic in winter and spring (1990–2005

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Huang

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Black carbon (BC particles accumulated in the Arctic troposphere and deposited on snow have been calculated to have significant effects on radiative forcing of the Arctic regional climate. Applying cluster analysis technique on 10-day backward trajectories, seven distinct transport pathways (or clusters affecting Alert (82.5° N, 62.5° W, Nunavut in Canada are identified in this work. Transport frequency associated with each pathway is obtained as the fraction of trajectories in that cluster. Based on atmospheric transport frequency and BC surface flux from surrounding regions (i.e. North America, Europe, and former USSR, a linear regression model is constructed to investigate the inter-annual variations of BC observed at Alert in January and April, representative of winter and spring respectively, between 1990 and 2005. Strong correlations are found between BC concentrations predicted with the regression model and measurements at Alert for both seasons (R2 equals 0.77 and 0.81 for winter and spring, respectively. Results imply that atmospheric transport and BC emission are the major contributors to the inter-annual variations in BC concentrations observed at Alert in the cold seasons for the 16-year period. Other factors, such as deposition, could also contribute to the variability in BC concentrations but were not considered in this analysis. Based on the regression model the relative contributions of regional BC emissions affecting Alert are attributed to the Eurasian sector, composed of the European Union and the former USSR, and the North American sector. Considering both seasons, the model suggests that former USSR is the major contributor to the near-surface BC levels at the Canadian high Arctic site with an average contribution of about 67% during the 16-year period, followed by European Union (18% and North America (15%. In winter, the atmospheric transport of BC aerosols from Eurasia is found to be even more

  19. Carbon and Carbon Isotope Cycling in the Western Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mol, Jacoba; Thomas, Helmuth

    2016-04-01

    Increasing carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere are having drastic effects on the global oceans. The Arctic Ocean is particularly susceptible to change as warming, sea-ice loss and a weak buffering capacity all influence this complicated semi-enclosed sea. In order to investigate the inorganic carbon system in the Canadian Arctic, water samples were collected in the Beaufort Sea, on the Alaskan shelf, at the Mackenzie river delta, and in Amundsen Gulf during the summer of 2014 and were analyzed for dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), total alkalinity (TA), DI13C and 18O isotopes. Carbon isotopes are used to investigate the role of biological production on the uptake and transfer of inorganic carbon to depth. A preferential uptake of the lighter 12C relative to the heavier 13C isotope during biological production leads to a fractionation of the 13C/12C isotopes in both the organic matter and the water column. This results in an enrichment of DI13C in the high productivity surface waters and a depletion of DI13C at depth. Physical processes including freshwater input, brine rejection, and water mass mixing are investigated through the measurement of oxygen isotopes. Differences in the carbon system across the study area due to both biological and physical processes are assessed using depth profiles of DI13C and related carbon system parameters.

  20. Heterotrophic microbial colonization of the interior of impact-shocked rocks from Haughton impact structure, Devon Island, Nunavut, Canadian High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fike, David A.; Cockell, Charles; Pearce, David; Lee, Pascal

    2002-10-01

    The polar desert is one of the most extreme environments on Earth. Endolithic organisms can escape or mitigate the hazards of the polar desert by using the resources available in the interior of rocks. We examined endolithic communities within crystalline rocks that have undergone shock metamorphism as a result of an asteroid or comet impact. Specifically, we present a characterization of the heterotrophic endolithic community and its environment in the interior of impact-shocked gneisses and their host polymict breccia from the Haughton impact structure on Devon Island, Nunavut, Canadian High Arctic. Microbiological colonization of impact-shocked rocks is facilitated by impact-induced fissures and cavities, which occur throughout the samples, the walls of which are lined with high abundances of biologically important elements owing to the partial volatilization of minerals within the rock during the impact. 27 heterotrophic bacteria were isolated from these shocked rocks and were identified by 16S rDNA sequencing. The isolates from the shocked gneiss and the host breccia are similar to each other, and to other heterotrophic communities isolated from polar environments, suggesting that the interiors of the rocks are colonized by microorganisms from the surrounding country rocks and soils. Inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES), scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) analysis were used to identify the chemical composition of the shocked materials and to document the in situ growth of microbes in their interiors. The identification of these heterotrophic communities within impact-shocked crystalline rocks extends our knowledge of the habitable biosphere on Earth. The colonization of the interiors of these samples has astrobiological applications both for considering terrestrial, microbiological contamination of meteorites from the Antarctic ice sheet and for investigating possible habitats for microbial

  1. Environmental contaminants and human health in the Canadian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donaldson, S G; Van Oostdam, J; Tikhonov, C; Feeley, M; Armstrong, B; Ayotte, P; Boucher, O; Bowers, W; Chan, L; Dallaire, F; Dallaire, R; Dewailly, E; Edwards, J; Egeland, G M; Fontaine, J; Furgal, C; Leech, T; Loring, E; Muckle, G; Nancarrow, T; Pereg, D; Plusquellec, P; Potyrala, M; Receveur, O; Shearer, R G

    2010-10-15

    The third Canadian Arctic Human Health Assessment conducted under the Canadian Northern Contaminants Program (NCP), in association with the circumpolar Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP), addresses concerns about possible adverse health effects in individuals exposed to environmental contaminants through a diet containing country foods. The objectives here are to: 1) provide data on changes in human contaminant concentrations and exposure among Canadian Arctic peoples; 2) identify new contaminants of concern; 3) discuss possible health effects; 4) outline risk communication about contaminants in country food; and 5) identify knowledge gaps for future contaminant research and monitoring. The nutritional and cultural benefits of country foods are substantial; however, some dietary studies suggest declines in the amount of country foods being consumed. Significant declines were found for most contaminants in maternal blood over the last 10 years within all three Arctic regions studied. Inuit continue to have the highest levels of almost all persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and metals among the ethnic groups studied. A greater proportion of people in the East exceed Health Canada's guidelines for PCBs and mercury, although the proportion of mothers exceeding these guidelines has decreased since the previous assessment. Further monitoring and research are required to assess trends and health effects of emerging contaminants. Infant development studies have shown possible subtle effects of prenatal exposure to heavy metals and some POPs on immune system function and neurodevelopment. New data suggest important beneficial effects on brain development for Inuit infants from some country food nutrients. The most successful risk communication processes balance the risks and benefits of a diet of country food through input from a variety of regional experts and the community, to incorporate the many socio-cultural and economic factors to arrive at a risk

  2. Performance of municipal waste stabilization ponds in the Canadian Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ragush, Colin M.; Schmidt, Jordan J.; Krkosek, Wendy H.;

    2015-01-01

    implemented in Canada, but not yet applied to Canada’s Arctic due to uncertainty related to the performance of current wastewater treatment systems. Waste stabilization pond (WSP) treatment performance is impacted by community water use, pond design, and climate. The greatest challenge arctic communities......The majority of small remote communities in the Canadian arctic territory of Nunavut utilize waste stabilization ponds (WSPs) for municipal wastewater treatment because of their relatively low capital and operational costs, and minimal complexity. New national effluent quality regulations have been...... experience when using passive wastewater treatment technologies is the constraints imposed by the extreme climate, which is characterized as having long cold winters with short cool summers that can be solar intense. The removal of carbonaceous biochemical oxygen demand (CBOD5), total suspended solids (TSS...

  3. The Arctic--A Global Hot Spot: Resources for Teaching the Geography of the Contemporary Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arntzen, Betsy; Sotherden, Amy

    2011-01-01

    Canadian geography is a fascinating topic, particularly the Canadian North. The North is central to Canadian identity as can be seen by the choice of the far north "inukshuk" standing stones as the emblem for the 2010 Winter Olympics held in Vancouver, southern British Columbia. Canada's Arctic is receiving increasing attention by media,…

  4. Spatial and temporal trends of contaminants in terrestrial biota from the Canadian Arctic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Contaminants in the Canadian Arctic have been studied over the last twelve years under the guidance of the Northern Contaminants Program. This paper summarizes results from that program from 1998 to 2003 with respect to terrestrial animals in the Canadian Arctic. The arctic terrestrial environment has few significant contaminant issues, particularly when compared with freshwater and marine environments. Both current and historical industrial activities in the north may have a continuing effect on biota in the immediate area, but effects tend to be localized. An investigation of arctic ground squirrels at a site in the Northwest Territories that had historically received applications of DDT concluded that DDT in arctic ground squirrels livers was the result of contamination and that this is an indication of the continuing effect of a local point source of DDT. Arsenic concentrations were higher in berries collected from areas around gold mines in the Northwest Territories than from control sites, suggesting that gold mining may significantly affect arsenic levels in berries in the Yellowknives Dene traditional territory. Although moose and caribou from the Canadian Arctic generally carry relatively low contaminant burdens, Yukon moose had high renal selenium concentrations, and moose and some woodland caribou from the same area had high renal cadmium levels, which may put some animals at risk of toxicological effects. Low hepatic copper levels in some caribou herds may indicate a shortage of copper for metabolic demands, particularly for females. Similarities in patterns of temporal fluctuations in renal element concentrations for moose and caribou suggest that environmental factors may be a major cause of fluctuations in renal concentrations of some elements. Concentrations of persistent organochlorines and metals in beaver and muskrat from the Northwest Territories, and carnivores from across the Canadian Arctic were very low and considered normal for terrestrial

  5. Air quality monitoring in communities of the Canadian Arctic during the high shipping season with a focus on local and marine pollution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. A. Aliabadi

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The Canadian Arctic has experienced decreasing sea ice extent and increasing shipping activity in recent decades. While there are economic incentives to develop resources in the north, there are environmental concerns that increasing marine traffic will contribute to declining air quality in northern communities. In an effort to characterize the relative impact of shipping on air quality in the north, two monitoring stations have been installed in Cape Dorset and Resolute, Nunavut, and have been operational since 1 June 2013. The impact of shipping and other sources of emissions on NOx, O3, SO2, BC, and PM2.5 pollution have been characterized for the 2013 shipping season from 1 June to 1 November. In addition, a high-resolution Air Quality Health Index (AQHI for both sites was computed. Shipping consistently increased O3 mixing ratio and PM2.5 concentration. The 90% confidence interval for mean difference in O3 mixing ratio between ship- and no ship-influenced air masses were up to 4.6–4.7 ppb and 2.5–2.7 ppb for Cape Dorset and Resolute, respectively. The same intervals for PM2.5 concentrations were up to 1.8–1.9 μg m−3 and 0.5–0.6 μg m−3. Ship-influenced air masses consistently exhibited an increase of 0.1 to 0.3 in the high-resolution AQHI compared to no ship-influenced air masses. Trajectory cluster analysis in combination with ship traffic tracking provided an estimated range for percent ship contribution to NOx, O3, SO2, and PM2.5 that were 12.9–17.5 %, 16.2–18.1 %, 16.9–18.3 %, and 19.5–31.7 % for Cape Dorset and 1.0–7.2 %, 2.9–4.8 %, 5.5–10.0 %, and 6.5–7.2 % for Resolute during the 2013 shipping season. Additional measurements in Resolute suggested that percent ship contribution to black carbon was 4.3–9.8 % and that black carbon constituted 1.3–9.7 % of total PM2.5 mass in ship plumes. Continued air quality monitoring in the above sites for future shipping seasons will improve the statistics in our

  6. Air quality monitoring in communities of the Canadian Arctic during the high shipping season with a focus on local and marine pollution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aliabadi, A. A.; Staebler, R. M.; Sharma, S.

    2015-03-01

    The Canadian Arctic has experienced decreasing sea ice extent and increasing shipping activity in recent decades. While there are economic incentives to develop resources in the north, there are environmental concerns that increasing marine traffic will contribute to declining air quality in northern communities. In an effort to characterize the relative impact of shipping on air quality in the north, two monitoring stations have been installed in Cape Dorset and Resolute, Nunavut, and have been operational since 1 June 2013. The impact of shipping and other sources of emissions on NOx, O3, SO2, BC, and PM2.5 pollution have been characterized for the 2013 shipping season from 1 June to 1 November. In addition, a high-resolution Air Quality Health Index (AQHI) for both sites was computed. Shipping consistently increased O3 mixing ratio and PM2.5 concentration. The 90% confidence interval for mean difference in O3 mixing ratio between ship- and no ship-influenced air masses were up to 4.6-4.7 ppb and 2.5-2.7 ppb for Cape Dorset and Resolute, respectively. The same intervals for PM2.5 concentrations were up to 1.8-1.9 μg m-3 and 0.5-0.6 μg m-3. Ship-influenced air masses consistently exhibited an increase of 0.1 to 0.3 in the high-resolution AQHI compared to no ship-influenced air masses. Trajectory cluster analysis in combination with ship traffic tracking provided an estimated range for percent ship contribution to NOx, O3, SO2, and PM2.5 that were 12.9-17.5 %, 16.2-18.1 %, 16.9-18.3 %, and 19.5-31.7 % for Cape Dorset and 1.0-7.2 %, 2.9-4.8 %, 5.5-10.0 %, and 6.5-7.2 % for Resolute during the 2013 shipping season. Additional measurements in Resolute suggested that percent ship contribution to black carbon was 4.3-9.8 % and that black carbon constituted 1.3-9.7 % of total PM2.5 mass in ship plumes. Continued air quality monitoring in the above sites for future shipping seasons will improve the statistics in our analysis and characterize repeating seasonal patterns

  7. Air quality monitoring in communities of the Canadian Arctic during the high shipping season with a focus on local and marine pollution

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. A. Aliabadi

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The Canadian Arctic has experienced decreasing sea ice extent and increasing shipping activity in the recent decades. While there are economic incentives to develop resources in the North, there are environmental concerns that increasing marine traffic will contribute to declining air quality in Northern communities. In an effort to characterize the relative impact of shipping on air quality in the North, two monitoring stations have been installed in Cape Dorset and Resolute, Nunavut, and have been operational since 1 June 2013. The impact of shipping and other sources of emissions on NOx, O3, SO2, BC, and PM2.5 pollution have been characterized for the 2013 shipping season from 1 June to 1 November. In addition, a high resolution Air Quality Health Index (AQHI for both sites was computed. Shipping consistently increased O3 mixing ratio and PM2.5 concentration. The 90% confidence interval for mean difference in O3 mixing ratio between ship and no ship-influenced air masses were up to 4.6–4.7 ppb and 2.5–2.7 ppb for Cape Dorset and Resolute, respectively. The same intervals for PM2.5 concentrations were up to 1.8–1.9 μg m−3 and 0.5–0.6 μg m−3. Ship-influenced air masses consistently exhibited degraded air quality by an increase of 0.1 to 0.3 in the high resolution AQHI compared to no ship-influenced air masses. Trajectory cluster analysis in combination with ship traffic tracking provided an estimated range for percent ship contribution to NOx, O3, SO2, and PM2.5 that were 12.9–17.5%, 16.2–18.1%, 16.9–18.3%, and 19.5–31.7% for Cape Dorset and 1.0–7.2%, 2.9–4.8%, 5.5–10.0%, and 6.5–7.2% for Resolute during the 2013 shipping season. Additional measurements in Resolute suggested that percent ship contribution to black carbon was 4.3–9.8% and that black carbon constituted 1.3–9.7% of total PM2.5 mass in ship plumes. Continued air quality monitoring in the above sites for future shipping seasons will improve the

  8. Methane cross-validation between three Fourier transform spectrometers: SCISAT ACE-FTS, GOSAT TANSO-FTS, and ground-based FTS measurements in the Canadian high Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holl, Gerrit; Walker, Kaley A.; Conway, Stephanie; Saitoh, Naoko; Boone, Chris D.; Strong, Kimberly; Drummond, James R.

    2016-05-01

    We present cross-validation of remote sensing measurements of methane profiles in the Canadian high Arctic. Accurate and precise measurements of methane are essential to understand quantitatively its role in the climate system and in global change. Here, we show a cross-validation between three data sets: two from spaceborne instruments and one from a ground-based instrument. All are Fourier transform spectrometers (FTSs). We consider the Canadian SCISAT Atmospheric Chemistry Experiment (ACE)-FTS, a solar occultation infrared spectrometer operating since 2004, and the thermal infrared band of the Japanese Greenhouse Gases Observing Satellite (GOSAT) Thermal And Near infrared Sensor for carbon Observation (TANSO)-FTS, a nadir/off-nadir scanning FTS instrument operating at solar and terrestrial infrared wavelengths, since 2009. The ground-based instrument is a Bruker 125HR Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectrometer, measuring mid-infrared solar absorption spectra at the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL) Ridge Laboratory at Eureka, Nunavut (80° N, 86° W) since 2006. For each pair of instruments, measurements are collocated within 500 km and 24 h. An additional collocation criterion based on potential vorticity values was found not to significantly affect differences between measurements. Profiles are regridded to a common vertical grid for each comparison set. To account for differing vertical resolutions, ACE-FTS measurements are smoothed to the resolution of either PEARL-FTS or TANSO-FTS, and PEARL-FTS measurements are smoothed to the TANSO-FTS resolution. Differences for each pair are examined in terms of profile and partial columns. During the period considered, the number of collocations for each pair is large enough to obtain a good sample size (from several hundred to tens of thousands depending on pair and configuration). Considering full profiles, the degrees of freedom for signal (DOFS) are between 0.2 and 0.7 for TANSO-FTS and

  9. Community Characterization of Microbial Populations Found at a Cold Water Sulfidic Spring in the Canadian High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trivedi, C.; Lau, G. E.; Templeton, A. S.; Grasby, S. E.; Spear, J. R.

    2015-12-01

    The unique environment on Europa makes it an ideal target for astrobiological investigation. One such earth-based analogue to aid in this investigation is the sulfur-dominated glacial spring system found at Borup Fiord Pass (BFP), Ellesmere Island, Nunavut, Canada. In this system, subsurface microbial sulfate reduction produces hydrogen sulfide, which is transported through the glacier along spring channels [1]. As the surface oxidation of H2S occurs, resultant deposition of elemental sulfur (S0) and other minerals becomes visible (attached image). The energy released from these reactions can support potential microbial metabolisms and may be a valuable representation of microbial processes occurring on Europa. The resulting sulfur minerals provide sensitive records of dynamic atmospheric, geological, hydrological, chemical, and biological processes on planetary surfaces. Moreover, we expect that the S0-rich deposits of this glacial spring system will serve as a mineralogical record for biological activity and will provide a valuable tool for recognizing potential sulfur-based life on Europa. During a recent collaborative expedition (2014) to BFP, samples were taken from the toe of the glacier in an area called the 'Blister Crust' (attached image). At this location, glacial channels reach the surface, representing an active interface between subsurface and surface processes. Initial geochemical characterization at the site revealed high amounts of aqueous sulfide (1.8 mM) and hydrogen (29 nM), which likely serve as the electron donation potential in the system. Furthermore, preliminary 16S rRNA gene sequencing has shown a high abundance of the genus Sulfurimonas, which is a known sulfur metabolizer. Our research seeks to further characterize microbial communities found at this interface in order to elucidate information regarding in situ sulfur cycling and the potential to tie this into subsurface/surface processes on Europa. Continued work will provide guidance

  10. Insights into aerosols, chemistry, and clouds from NETCARE: Observations from the Canadian Arctic in summer 2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbatt, J.

    2015-12-01

    The Canadian Network on Aerosols and Climate: Addressing Key Uncertainties in Remote Canadian Regions (or NETCARE) was established in 2013 to study the interactions between aerosols, chemistry, clouds and climate. The network brings together Canadian academic and government researchers, along with key international collaborators. Attention is being given to observations and modeling of Arctic aerosol, with the goal to understand underlying processes and so improve predictions of aerosol climate forcing. Motivation to understand the summer Arctic atmosphere comes from the retreat of summer sea ice and associated increase in marine influence. To address these goals, a suite of measurements was conducted from two platforms in summer 2014 in the Canadian Arctic, i.e. an aircraft-based campaign on the Alfred Wegener Institute POLAR 6 and an ocean-based campaign from the CGCS Amundsen icebreaker. NETCARE-POLAR was based out of Resolute Bay, Nunavut during an initial period of little transport and cloud-free conditions and a later period characterized by more transport with potentially biomass burning influence. Measurements included particle and cloud droplet numbers and size distributions, aerosol composition, cloud nuclei, and levels of gaseous tracers. Ultrafine particle events were more frequently observed in the marine boundary layer than above, with particle growth observed in some cases to cloud condensation nucleus sizes. The influence of biological processes on atmospheric constituents was also assessed from the ship during NETCARE-AMUNDSEN, as indicated by high measured levels of gaseous ammonia, DMS and oxygenated VOCs, as well as isolated particle formation and growth episodes. The cruise took place in Baffin Bay and through the Canadian archipelago. Interpretation of the observations from both campaigns is enhanced through the use of chemical transport and particle dispersion models. This talk will provide an overview of NETCARE Arctic observational and

  11. Implications of a Changing Arctic on Summertime Surface Seawater pCO2 Variations in the Eastern Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burgers, T.; Miller, L. A.; Thomas, H.; Else, B. G. T.; Gosselin, M.; Papakyriakou, T. N.

    2015-12-01

    Arctic marine carbonate chemistry and rates of air-sea CO2 exchange are anticipated to be affected by current changes in sea-ice structure and extent, freshwater inputs, ocean circulation patterns, and the seasonality of phytoplankton blooms. This study examines how such changes will impact rates of air-sea CO2 exchange in northern Baffin Bay, Nares Strait, and the eastern Canadian Arctic Archipelago. This complex oceanographic region includes the North Water polynya; one of the most biologically productive areas in the Arctic Ocean, and the convergence site of the warm West Greenland Current with cold exported Arctic waters. Continuous measurements of atmospheric and surface seawater CO2 (pCO2) were collected onboard the Canadian Coast Guard Ship Amundsen during its 2013 and 2014 summer cruises. Surface seawater pCO2 displayed considerable variability (145 - 389 ppm), but never exceeded atmospheric concentrations. Calculated CO2 fluxes ranged from 0 to -45 mmol m-2 day-1 (oceanic uptake), and were estimated using the Sweeney et al. (2007) parameterization with in-situ wind speed measurements. Ancillary measurements of chlorophyll a reveal low productivity in surface waters during mid-summer with isolated sub-surface blooms. This is likely the result of nutrient limitation within the highly stratified polar mixed layer (PML). Measurements of stable oxygen isotope ratios (δ18O) and total alkalinity were used to estimate freshwater inputs (sea-ice melt vs. meteoric water) to the PML. These and in-situ observations of sea ice cover were used to interpret seawater pCO2 variations. Surface waters influenced by sea-ice melt exhibit lower pCO2 than those influenced by meteoric water. The results of this investigation shed light on the future role of this region as a summertime sink of atmospheric CO2.

  12. An assessment of the toxicological significance of anthropogenic contaminants in Canadian arctic wildlife

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fisk, Aaron T. [Warnell School of Forest Resources, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602-2152 (United States)]. E-mail: afisk@forestry.uga.edu; Wit, Cynthia A. de [Department of Applied Environmental Science, Stockholm University, Stockholm (Sweden); Wayland, Mark [Prairie and Northern Wildlife Research Centre, Environment Canada, 115 Perimeter Rd., Saskatoon, SK, S7N 0X4 (Canada); Kuzyk, Zou Zou [Environmental Sciences Group, Royal Military College of Canada, Kingston, ON, K7K 7B4 (Canada); Burgess, Neil [Canadian Wildlife Service, Environment Canada, 6 Bruce St. Mt. Pearl, NL, A1N4T3 (Canada); Letcher, Robert [National Wildlife Research Centre, Environment Canada, Ottawa, ON, K1A 0H3 (Canada); Braune, Birgit [National Wildlife Research Centre, Environment Canada, Ottawa, ON, Canada K1A 0H3 (Canada); Norstrom, Ross [National Wildlife Research Centre, Environment Canada, Ottawa, ON, K1A 0H3 (Canada); Blum, Susan Polischuk [Office of Research Services, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, S7N 4J8 (Canada); Sandau, Courtney [Jacques Whitford Limited, Calgary, AB, T2R 0E4 (Canada); Lie, Elisabeth [National Veterinary Institute, P.O. Box 8156, Dep 0033, Oslo (Norway); Larsen, Hans Jorgen S. [Norwegian School of Veterinary Science, P.O. Box 8146, Dep 0033, Oslo (Norway); Skaare, Janneche Utne [National Veterinary Institute, P.O. Box 8156, Dep 0033, Oslo (Norway); Norwegian School of Veterinary Science, P.O. Box 8146, Dep 0033, Oslo (Norway); Muir, Derek C.G. [National Water Research Institute, Environment Canada, Burlington, ON, L7R 4A6 (Canada)

    2005-12-01

    Anthropogenic contaminants have been a concern in the Canadian arctic for over 30 years due to relatively high concentrations of bioaccumulating and biomagnifying organochlorine contaminants (OCs) and toxic metals found in some arctic biota and humans. However, few studies have addressed the potential effects of these contaminants in Canadian arctic wildlife. Prior to 1997, biological effects data were minimal and insufficient at any level of biological organization. The present review summarizes recent studies on biological effects related to contaminant exposure, and compares new tissue concentration data to threshold effects levels. Weak relationships between cadmium, mercury and selenium burdens and health biomarkers in common eider ducks (Somateria mollissima borealis) in Nunavut were found but it was concluded that metals were not influencing the health of these birds. Black guillemots (Cepphus grylle) examined near PCB-contaminated Saglek Bay, Labrador, had enlarged livers, elevated EROD and liver lipid levels and reduced retinol (vitamin A) and retinyl palmitate levels, which correlated to PCB levels in the birds. Circulating levels of thyroid hormones in polar bears (Ursus maritimus) were correlated to PCB and HO-PCB plasma concentrations, but the impact at the population level is unknown. High PCB and organochlorine pesticide concentrations were found to be strongly associated with impaired humoral and cell-mediated immune responses in polar bears, implying an increased infection risk that could impact the population. In beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas), cytochromes P450 (phase I) and conjugating (phase II) enzymes have been extensively profiled (immunochemically and catalytically) in liver, demonstrating the importance of contaminants in relation to enzyme induction, metabolism and potential contaminant bioactivation and fate. Concentrations of OCs and metals in arctic terrestrial wildlife, fish and seabirds are generally below effects thresholds

  13. An assessment of the toxicological significance of anthropogenic contaminants in Canadian arctic wildlife

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anthropogenic contaminants have been a concern in the Canadian arctic for over 30 years due to relatively high concentrations of bioaccumulating and biomagnifying organochlorine contaminants (OCs) and toxic metals found in some arctic biota and humans. However, few studies have addressed the potential effects of these contaminants in Canadian arctic wildlife. Prior to 1997, biological effects data were minimal and insufficient at any level of biological organization. The present review summarizes recent studies on biological effects related to contaminant exposure, and compares new tissue concentration data to threshold effects levels. Weak relationships between cadmium, mercury and selenium burdens and health biomarkers in common eider ducks (Somateria mollissima borealis) in Nunavut were found but it was concluded that metals were not influencing the health of these birds. Black guillemots (Cepphus grylle) examined near PCB-contaminated Saglek Bay, Labrador, had enlarged livers, elevated EROD and liver lipid levels and reduced retinol (vitamin A) and retinyl palmitate levels, which correlated to PCB levels in the birds. Circulating levels of thyroid hormones in polar bears (Ursus maritimus) were correlated to PCB and HO-PCB plasma concentrations, but the impact at the population level is unknown. High PCB and organochlorine pesticide concentrations were found to be strongly associated with impaired humoral and cell-mediated immune responses in polar bears, implying an increased infection risk that could impact the population. In beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas), cytochromes P450 (phase I) and conjugating (phase II) enzymes have been extensively profiled (immunochemically and catalytically) in liver, demonstrating the importance of contaminants in relation to enzyme induction, metabolism and potential contaminant bioactivation and fate. Concentrations of OCs and metals in arctic terrestrial wildlife, fish and seabirds are generally below effects thresholds

  14. Indicators of changing landscape wetness in the western Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsh, P.; de Jong, T.; Walker, B.

    2015-12-01

    The landscape of the western Canadian arctic has been changing over the last 5 decades in response to warming air temperatures and decreasing precipitation. Changes include thinner snowcover, decreased river and lake ice thickness, deepening active layer, increasing thaw slumping, and expanding shrub cover for example. Although there are no long term data sets to consider changes in soil wetness in this region, changes in surface moisture can be considered through analysis of both long term stream discharge records and remote sensing of tundra ponds and lakes. In this paper, we will use these long term records in order to explore past changes to this environment. In addition, we will outline details of ongoing observations at long term observatories and modelling efforts to consider the controls on future changes in wetness.

  15. Some data on the polar bear and its utilization in the Canadian Arctic

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — Some data have been collected on the polar bear kill and its utilization, based on information from 14 to 26 coastal settlements in the Canadian Arctic. Tt seems...

  16. In situ petroleum hydrocarbon bioremediation in the Canadian Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Greer, C.; Bell, T.; Lee, K.; Delisle, S.; Kovanen, D.; Craig, D.; Juck, D. [National Research Council of Canada, Montreal, PQ (Canada). Biotechnology Research Inst.

    2010-07-01

    This presentation reported on the in-situ bioremediation of diesel contaminated soils at the Canadian Forces Station CFS-Alert, in the Arctic. The soil was amended with monoammonium phosphate (MAP). The operation was designed to take place in a 2 month period during the brief thaw season. This presentation described the installation of the bioventing stacks, the turning of soil, and the application of an oxygen release compound (ORC) at the surface of the permafrost. A significant decrease in petroleum hydrocarbons (PC) was noted over 2 months. The effect of MAP amendment was a slight decrease in biomass in the pristine environment and a significant increase in biomass in the contaminated environment. The alkB gene was found to be important in the biodegradation of alkanes. Stable isotope probing (SIP) was used to identify active organisms. This bioremediation study showed that even in harsh Arctic climates, soils that are moderately contaminated with petroleum hydrocarbons can be remediated effectively and economically via biodegradation. tabs., figs.

  17. Recent progress on our understanding of the biological effects of mercury in fish and wildlife in the Canadian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scheuhammer, Anton; Braune, Birgit; Chan, Hing Man; Frouin, Héloïse; Krey, Anke; Letcher, Robert; Loseto, Lisa; Noël, Marie; Ostertag, Sonja; Ross, Peter; Wayland, Mark

    2015-03-15

    This review summarizes our current state of knowledge regarding the potential biological effects of mercury (Hg) exposure on fish and wildlife in the Canadian Arctic. Although Hg in most freshwater fish from northern Canada was not sufficiently elevated to be of concern, a few lakes in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut contained fish of certain species (e.g. northern pike, Arctic char) whose muscle Hg concentrations exceeded an estimated threshold range (0.5-1.0 μg g(-1) wet weight) within which adverse biological effects begin to occur. Marine fish species generally had substantially lower Hg concentrations than freshwater fish; but the Greenland shark, a long-lived predatory species, had mean muscle Hg concentrations exceeding the threshold range for possible effects on health or reproduction. An examination of recent egg Hg concentrations for marine birds from the Canadian Arctic indicated that mean Hg concentration in ivory gulls from Seymour Island fell within the threshold range associated with adverse effects on reproduction in birds. Mercury concentrations in brain tissue of beluga whales and polar bears were generally lower than levels associated with neurotoxicity in mammals, but were sometimes high enough to cause subtle neurochemical changes that can precede overt neurotoxicity. Harbour seals from western Hudson Bay had elevated mean liver Hg concentrations along with comparatively high muscle Hg concentrations indicating potential health effects from methylmercury (MeHg) exposure on this subpopulation. Because current information is generally insufficient to determine with confidence whether Hg exposure is impacting the health of specific fish or wildlife populations in the Canadian Arctic, biological effects studies should comprise a major focus of future Hg research in the Canadian Arctic. Additionally, studies on cellular interactions between Hg and selenium (Se) are required to better account for potential protective effects of Se on Hg

  18. Recent changes in the multi-year ice area budget of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howell, Stephen; Pizzolato, Larissa; Derksen, Chris; Brady, Michael

    2014-05-01

    The Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA) is intricate collection of islands and channels located on the North American continental shelf. The deep-water route of the North West Passage crosses through the CAA near 75°N connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. The major challenge to safe navigation of the North West Passage is the presence of multi-year sea ice (MYI). In recent years, MYI conditions within the CAA during September have begun to decrease considerably with 2011 and 2012 being the lightest MYI years on record since 1968. Recent light MYI years within the CAA are associated with recent openings of the North West Passage (i.e. 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011 and 2012). MYI within the CAA is either imported from the Arctic Ocean or grown in situ and therefore in order to understand the processes contributing to these recent reductions in September MYI within the CAA we derived the first estimates of the MYI area budget of the CAA using RADARSAT-1 and RADARSAT-2 imagery from 1997-2012. Overall, there has been a reduced amount of Arctic Ocean MYI inflow into the CAA during the summer months since 2007. The latter process can be attributed to more frequent high sea level pressure anomalies over the Beaufort Sea and Canadian Basin. The amount of MYI grown in situ within the CAA has also reduced because of longer melt seasons reducing the survivability of seasonal ice over. MYI outflow to Baffin Bay from the CAA has been relatively consistent over the period. Interestingly, the recent reduced amount of MYI within the CAA, particularly noticeable since 2007, was found to be quantitatively linked with a step change increase in observed Arctic marine shipping activity following the dramatic summer sea ice reductions that began in 2007.

  19. Late Pleistocene ice export events into the Arctic Ocean from the M'Clure Strait Ice Stream, Canadian Arctic Archipelago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stokes, Chris R.; Clark, Chris D.; Darby, Dennis A.; Hodgson, Douglas A.

    2005-12-01

    Rapidly-flowing sectors of an ice sheet (ice streams) can play an important role in abrupt climate change through the delivery of icebergs and meltwater and the subsequent disruption of ocean thermohaline circulation (e.g., the North Atlantic's Heinrich events). Recently, several cores have been raised from the Arctic Ocean which document the existence of massive ice export events during the Late Pleistocene and whose provenance has been linked to source regions in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. In this paper, satellite imagery is used to map glacial geomorphology in the vicinity of Victoria Island, Banks Island and Prince of Wales Island (Canadian Arctic) in order to reconstruct ice flow patterns in the highly complex glacial landscape. A total of 88 discrete flow-sets are mapped and of these, 13 exhibit the characteristic geomorphology of palaeo-ice streams (i.e., parallel patterns of large, highly elongated mega-scale glacial lineations forming a convergent flow pattern with abrupt lateral margins). Previous studies by other workers and cross-cutting relationships indicate that the majority of these ice streams are relatively young and operated during or immediately prior to deglaciation. Our new mapping, however, documents a large (> 700 km long; 110 km wide) and relatively old ice stream imprint centred in M'Clintock Channel and converging into Viscount Melville Sound. A trough mouth fan located on the continental shelf suggests that it extended along M'Clure Strait and was grounded at the shelf edge. The location of the M'Clure Strait Ice Stream exactly matches the source area of 4 (possibly 5) major ice export events recorded in core PS1230 raised from Fram Strait, the major ice exit for the Arctic Ocean. These ice export events occur at ˜12.9, ˜15.6, ˜22 and 29.8 ka ( 14C yr BP) and we argue that they record vigorous episodes of activity of the M'Clure Strait Ice Stream. The timing of these events is remarkably similar to the North Atlantic's Heinrich

  20. Postglacial environmental succession of Nettilling Lake (Baffin Island, Canadian Arctic) inferred from biogeochemical and microfossil proxies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narancic, Biljana; Pienitz, Reinhard; Chapligin, Bernhard; Meyer, Hanno; Francus, Pierre; Guilbault, Jean-Pierre

    2016-09-01

    Nettilling Lake (Baffin Island, Nunavut) is currently the largest lake in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. Despite its enormous size, this freshwater system remains little studied until the present-day. Existing records from southern Baffin Island indicate that in the early postglacial period, the region was submerged by the postglacial Tyrell Sea due to isostatic depression previously exerted by the Laurentide Ice Sheet. However, these records are temporally and spatially discontinuous, relying on qualitative extrapolation. This paper presents the first quantitative reconstruction of the postglacial environmental succession of the Nettilling Lake basin based on a 8300 yr-long high resolution sedimentary record. Our multi-proxy investigation of the glacio-isostatic uplift and subsequent changes in paleosalinity and sediment sources is based on analyses of sediment fabric, elemental geochemistry (μ-XRF), diatom assemblage composition, as well as on the first diatom-based oxygen isotope record from the eastern Canadian Arctic. Results indicate that the Nettilling Lake basin experienced a relatively rapid and uniform marine invasion in the early Holocene, followed by progressive freshening until about 6000 yr BP when limnological conditions similar to those of today were established. Our findings present evidence for deglacial processes in the Foxe Basin that were initiated at least 400yrs earlier than previously thought.

  1. Geochemical and Sr-Nd isotope variations within Cretaceous continental flood-basalt suites of the Canadian High Arctic, with a focus on the Hassel Formation basalts of northeast Ellesmere Island

    Science.gov (United States)

    Estrada, Solveig

    2015-11-01

    Early- to mid-Cretaceous flood-basalt suites of the northeast Canadian High Arctic assigned to a High Arctic Large Igneous Province (HALIP) were studied for their whole-rock geochemistry and Sr-Nd isotopes. Data from basalt flows within the upper Albian to lower Cenomanian Hassel Formation of northeast Ellesmere Island are compared with former published data and new inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry data of the stratigraphic equivalent Strand Fiord basalts and the older, late Hauterivian to Aptian Isachsen basalts from Axel Heiberg Island. The transitional to mildly alkaline aphyric Hassel basalts, with ocean island basalt (OIB)-like geochemical signatures in parts, have an Ar-Ar whole-rock age of on average 96.4 ± 1.6 Ma. They represent two geochemically different flow units without a fractional crystallization relationship: the high-phosphorous (HP) and low-phosphorous (LP) basalts. The Hassel HP basalts differ from the LP basalts by additionally higher Ba, K, Rb, Th and LREE contents, a pronounced positive Eu anomaly (Eu/Eu* = 1.74-1.76), as well as lower Ta, Nb, Zr and Hf concentrations. The Nd and Sr isotope ratios of the Hassel HP basalts [ ɛ Nd( t) of -1.3 to -1.4, 87Sr/86Sr( t) of 0.70706-0.70707] and the LP basalts [ ɛ Nd( t) of 4.5-4.9, 87Sr/86Sr( t) of 0.7038-0.7040] indicate an origin from different mantle sources. The geochemically similar tholeiitic Isachsen (ca. 130-113 Ma) and Strand Fiord basalts (ca. 105-95 Ma) are also incompatible element enriched relative to the primitive mantle, however, with negative Sr-P anomalies as well as partially negative K, Ta and Nb anomalies. In terms of incompatible element ratios (Zr/Nb, Nb/Th), several mantle components are involved in the formation of the flood-basalt suites: a component with primitive mantle composition, an OIB-like component (probably subducted and recycled oceanic crust) and an enriched lithospheric component. The latter component, probably metasomatized subcontinental

  2. Trends and variability in summer sea ice cover in the Canadian Arctic based on the Canadian Ice Service Digital Archive

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howell, S.; Tivy, A. C.; Alt, B.; McCourt, S.; Chagnon, R.; Crocker, G.; Carrieres, T. G.; Yackel, J.

    2010-12-01

    The Canadian Ice Service Digital Archive (CISDA) is a compilation of weekly ice charts that cover Canadian Waters; the data set is continually updated and it extends back to the early 1960s. The ice charts are represent and integration of remotely sensed sea ice data, surface observations, airborne and ship reports, operational model results and the expertise of experience ice forecasters. Although the accuracy, type and detail of information far exceeds what is attainable from a single satellite source, errors and uncertainties in the data are non-uniform in both space and time. In part one of this study the main sources of uncertainty in the database are reviewed and the data are validated for use in climate studies. In part two, trends and variability in summer sea ice in the Canadian Arctic are investigated using CISDA. These data revealed that between 1968 and 2008, summer sea ice cover has decreased by 8.9% ± 3.1% per decade in Hudson Bay, 2.9% ± 1.2% per decade in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, 8.9% ± 3.1% per decade in Baffin Bay, and 5.2% ± 2.4% per decade in the Beaufort Sea. In general, these reductions in sea ice cover are linked to increases in early summer surface air temperature (SAT); significant increases in SAT were observed in every season and with the exception of the Hudson Bay region they are consistently greater than the pan-Arctic change by up to ~0.2oC per decade. Within the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and Baffin Bay, the El Niño-Southern Oscillation (ENSO) index correlates well with multi-year ice coverage (positive correlation) and first-year ice coverage (negative correlation) suggesting that El Nino episodes precede summers with more multi-year ice and less first-year ice. Extending the trend calculations back to 1960 along the major shipping routes through the Canadian Arctic revealed significant decreases in summer sea ice coverage ranging between 11% and 15% per decade along the shipping route through Hudson Bay, the western

  3. Summertime sources of dimethyl sulfide in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and Baffin Bay

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mungall, E. L.; Croft, B.; Lizotte, M.; Thomas, J. L.; Murphy, J. G.; Levasseur, M.; Martin, R. V.; Wentzell, J. J. B.; Liggio, J.; Abbatt, J. P. D.

    2015-12-01

    Dimethyl sulfide (DMS) plays a major role in the global sulfur cycle. In addition, its atmospheric oxidation products contribute to the formation and growth of atmospheric aerosol particles, thereby influencing cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) populations and thus cloud formation. The pristine summertime Arctic atmosphere is a CCN-limited regime, and is thus very susceptible to the influence of DMS. However, atmospheric DMS mixing ratios have only rarely been measured in the summertime Arctic. During July-August 2014, we conducted the first high time resolution (10 Hz) DMS mixing ratio measurements for the Eastern Canadian Archipelago and Baffin Bay as one component of the Network on Climate and Aerosols: Addressing Key Uncertainties in Remote Canadian Environments (NETCARE). DMS mixing ratios ranged from below the detection limit of 4 to 1155 pptv (median 186 pptv). A set of transfer velocity parameterizations from the literature coupled with our atmospheric and coincident seawater DMS measurements yielded air-sea DMS flux estimates ranging from 0.02-12 μmol m-2 d-1, the first published for this region in summer. Airmass trajectory analysis using FLEXPART-WRF and chemical transport modeling using GEOS-Chem indicated that local sources (Lancaster Sound and Baffin Bay) were the dominant contributors to the DMS measured along the 21 day ship track, with episodic transport from the Hudson Bay System. After adjusting GEOS-Chem oceanic DMS values in the region to match measurements, GEOS-Chem reproduced the major features of the measured time series, but remained biased low overall (median 67 pptv). We investigated non-marine sources that might contribute to this bias, such as DMS emissions from lakes, biomass burning, melt ponds and coastal tundra. While the local marine sources of DMS dominated overall, our results suggest that non-local and possibly non-marine sources episodically contributed strongly to the observed summertime Arctic DMS mixing ratios.

  4. Summertime sources of dimethyl sulfide in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and Baffin Bay

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. L. Mungall

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Dimethyl sulfide (DMS plays a major role in the global sulfur cycle. In addition, its atmospheric oxidation products contribute to the formation and growth of atmospheric aerosol particles, thereby influencing cloud condensation nuclei (CCN populations and thus cloud formation. The pristine summertime Arctic atmosphere is a CCN-limited regime, and is thus very susceptible to the influence of DMS. However, atmospheric DMS mixing ratios have only rarely been measured in the summertime Arctic. During July–August 2014, we conducted the first high time resolution (10 Hz DMS mixing ratio measurements for the Eastern Canadian Archipelago and Baffin Bay as one component of the Network on Climate and Aerosols: Addressing Key Uncertainties in Remote Canadian Environments (NETCARE. DMS mixing ratios ranged from below the detection limit of 4 to 1155 pptv (median 186 pptv. A set of transfer velocity parameterizations from the literature coupled with our atmospheric and coincident seawater DMS measurements yielded air-sea DMS flux estimates ranging from 0.02–12 μmol m−2 d−1, the first published for this region in summer. Airmass trajectory analysis using FLEXPART-WRF and chemical transport modeling using GEOS-Chem indicated that local sources (Lancaster Sound and Baffin Bay were the dominant contributors to the DMS measured along the 21 day ship track, with episodic transport from the Hudson Bay System. After adjusting GEOS-Chem oceanic DMS values in the region to match measurements, GEOS-Chem reproduced the major features of the measured time series, but remained biased low overall (median 67 pptv. We investigated non-marine sources that might contribute to this bias, such as DMS emissions from lakes, biomass burning, melt ponds and coastal tundra. While the local marine sources of DMS dominated overall, our results suggest that non-local and possibly non-marine sources episodically contributed strongly to the observed summertime Arctic DMS mixing

  5. Barium and carbon fluxes in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas, Helmuth; Shadwick, Elizabeth; Dehairs, Frank; Lansard, Bruno; Mucci, Alfonso; Navez, Jacques; Gratton, Yves; Prowe, Friederike; Chierici, Melissa; Fransson, Agneta; Papakyriakou, Tim N.; Sternberg, Erika; Miller, Lisa A.; Tremblay, Jean-ÉRic; Monnin, Christophe

    2011-09-01

    The seasonal and spatial variability of dissolved Barium (Ba) in the Amundsen Gulf, southeastern Beaufort Sea, was monitored over a full year from September 2007 to September 2008. Dissolved Ba displays a nutrient-type behavior: the maximum water column concentration is located below the surface layer. The highest Ba concentrations are typically observed at river mouths, the lowest concentrations are found in water masses of Atlantic origin. Barium concentrations decrease eastward through the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. Barite (BaSO4) saturation is reached at the maximum dissolved Ba concentrations in the subsurface layer, whereas the rest of the water column is undersaturated. A three end-member mixing model comprising freshwater from sea-ice melt and rivers, as well as upper halocline water, is used to establish their relative contributions to the Ba concentrations in the upper water column of the Amundsen Gulf. Based on water column and riverine Ba contributions, we assess the depletion of dissolved Ba by formation and sinking of biologically bound Ba (bio-Ba), from which we derive an estimate of the carbon export production. In the upper 50 m of the water column of the Amundsen Gulf, riverine Ba accounts for up to 15% of the available dissolved Ba inventory, of which up to 20% is depleted by bio-Ba formation and export. Since riverine inputs and Ba export occur concurrently, the seasonal variability of dissolved Ba in the upper water column is moderate. Assuming a fixed organic carbon to bio-Ba flux ratio, carbon export out of the surface layer is estimated at 1.8 ± 0.45 mol C m-2 yr-1. Finally, we propose a climatological carbon budget for the Amundsen Gulf based on recent literature data and our findings, the latter bridging the surface and subsurface water carbon cycles.

  6. Natural Radioactivity Accumulated in the Arctic from Long-range Atmospheric Transport - Observations in Canadian Monitoring Stations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chen, Jing; Zhang, Weihua [Radiation Protection Bureau, Health Canada, 775 Brookfield Road, Ottawa K1A 1C1 (Canada)

    2014-07-01

    In the environment, the main sources of naturally occurring radionuclides come from radionuclides in the uranium decay series. Activity concentrations of uranium decay series radionuclides may vary considerably from place to place depending on the geological characteristics at the location. Their releases to the atmosphere are mainly through radon ({sup 222}Rn), a radioactive noble gas occurring naturally as an indirect decay product of uranium in soils and rocks. Due to the abundance of uranium, radon continuously emanates from continental land masses. With radon as the main source of naturally occurring radioactivity in the environment, one would think that the Arctic should be an area of low background radiation, because a considerable area of the Arctic is covered by glaciers and permafrost, and radon emanation rate has been reported to be negligible from those glacier and permafrost areas. However, available data have shown the opposite. The elevated level of naturally occurring radioactivity in the Arctic is due to natural sources outside of the Arctic, mainly through long-range atmospheric transport of radon and radon progeny. In some cases, natural radioactivity can accumulate to relatively high levels and become a health concern or a limiting factor of country food consumption. By definition, contaminants are undesirable substances which can cause harm to the environment, the biota, and humans. We can call these naturally accumulating radiological burdens to the Arctic 'natural contaminants' to distinguish them from the traditional meaning of contamination, the 'artificial contaminants' which are attributable to industrial or man-made sources. This paper reviews information available in the literature, analyses long-term atmospheric monitoring data in the Canadian high Arctic, sub-Arctic and mid-latitude sites, and provides discussion on research needed to address questions, such as how heavily the Arctic has been impacted by the

  7. Mercury in freshwater ecosystems of the Canadian Arctic: recent advances on its cycling and fate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chételat, John; Amyot, Marc; Arp, Paul; Blais, Jules M; Depew, David; Emmerton, Craig A; Evans, Marlene; Gamberg, Mary; Gantner, Nikolaus; Girard, Catherine; Graydon, Jennifer; Kirk, Jane; Lean, David; Lehnherr, Igor; Muir, Derek; Nasr, Mina; Poulain, Alexandre J; Power, Michael; Roach, Pat; Stern, Gary; Swanson, Heidi; van der Velden, Shannon

    2015-03-15

    The Canadian Arctic has vast freshwater resources, and fish are important in the diet of many Northerners. Mercury is a contaminant of concern because of its potential toxicity and elevated bioaccumulation in some fish populations. Over the last decade, significant advances have been made in characterizing the cycling and fate of mercury in these freshwater environments. Large amounts of new data on concentrations, speciation and fluxes of Hg are provided and summarized for water and sediment, which were virtually absent for the Canadian Arctic a decade ago. The biogeochemical processes that control the speciation of mercury remain poorly resolved, including the sites and controls of methylmercury production. Food web studies have examined the roles of Hg uptake, trophic transfer, and diet for Hg bioaccumulation in fish, and, in particular, advances have been made in identifying determinants of mercury levels in lake-dwelling and sea-run forms of Arctic char. In a comparison of common freshwater fish species that were sampled across the Canadian Arctic between 2002 and 2009, no geographic patterns or regional hotspots were evident. Over the last two to four decades, Hg concentrations have increased in some monitored populations of fish in the Mackenzie River Basin while other populations from the Yukon and Nunavut showed no change or a slight decline. The different Hg trends indicate that the drivers of temporal change may be regional or habitat-specific. The Canadian Arctic is undergoing profound environmental change, and preliminary evidence suggests that it may be impacting the cycling and bioaccumulation of mercury. Further research is needed to investigate climate change impacts on the Hg cycle as well as biogeochemical controls of methylmercury production and the processes leading to increasing Hg levels in some fish populations in the Canadian Arctic. PMID:24993511

  8. The Drabo corymbosae-Papaveretea dahliani − a new vegetation class of the High Arctic polar deserts

    OpenAIRE

    Daniëls Fred J. A.; Elvebakk Arve; Matveyeva Nadezhda V.; Mucina Ladislav

    2016-01-01

    A new class and a new order (Drabo corymbosae-Papaveretea dahliani and Saxifrago oppositifoliae-Papaveretalia dahliani) have been described, and the Papaverion dahliani validated. This is vegetation of zonal habitats in lowlands of the High Arctic subzone A (or Arctic herb, cushion forb or polar desert subzone) and of ecologically equivalent sites at high altitudes on the mountain plateaus of the High Arctic. The new class spans three continents – North America (Canadian Arctic Archipelago an...

  9. Multiproxy paleoecological evidence of Holocene climatic changes on the Boothia Peninsula, Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fortin, Marie-Claude; Gajewski, Konrad

    2016-05-01

    A study of chironomid remains in the sediments of Lake JR01 on the Boothia Peninsula in the Central Canadian Arctic provides a high-resolution record of mean July air temperatures for the last 6.9 ka. Diatom and pollen studies have previously been published from this core. Peak Holocene temperatures occurred prior to 5.0 ka, a time when overall aquatic and terrestrial biological production was high. Chironomid-inferred summer air temperatures reached up to 7.5°C during this period. The region of Lake JR01 cooled over the mid- to late-Holocene, with high biological production between 6.1 and 5.4 ka. Biological production decreased again at ∼2 ka and the rate of cooling increased in the past 2 ka, with coolest temperatures occurring between 0.46 and 0.36 ka, coinciding with the Little Ice Age. Although biological production increased in the last 150 yr, the reconstructed temperatures do not indicate a warming during this time. During transitions, either warming or cooling, chironomid production increases, suggesting an ecosystem-level response to climate variability, seen at a number of lakes across the Arctic.

  10. Sea ice melt onset dynamics in the northern Canadian Arctic Archipelago from RADARSAT

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahmud, M. S.; Howell, S.; Geldsetzer, T.; Yackel, J.

    2015-12-01

    Sea ice melt onset, the appearance of liquid water in its snow cover, decreases surface albedo which increases shortwave absorption and thereby accelerates snow and sea ice melting. Earlier melt onset leads to the earlier formation of open water which enhances the ice-albedo feedback. Sea ice melt onset timing and duration vary considerably, both spatially and temporally, owing to variability in atmospheric forcing; this in turn influences the September sea ice extent. Sea ice melt onset variability has been investigated using coarse resolution passive microwave observation in Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA); however, this does not provide sufficient information about sea ice melt dynamics. We developed a new melt onset algorithm using high resolution synthetic aperture radar (SAR) images from RADARSAT to better understand sea ice melt onset dynamics in northern Canadian Arctic Archipelago (fig 1) from 1997 to 2014. The algorithm is based on the temporal evolution of the SAR backscatter coefficient (σo), using separate thresholds for seasonal first-year ice and multi-year ice. Results indicated that the mean annual average melt onset date in the northern CAA was on year day 164 (mid-June) with a standard deviation of 4 days over the 18 year period. No significant trend for melt onset date was found over the 18 year period (fig: 2) but extreme early melt onset was detected in 1998 and 2012 associated with anomalous atmospheric forcing. Spatially, sea ice onset over the entire northern CAA varied from a 10-day minimum in 2007, to a 35-day maximum in 2011 and exhibited negative correlation (r=0.70) with the rate of increase in surface air temperature (fig 3) derived from Extended AVHRR Polar Pathfinder (APP-x) dataset. An earlier (later) melt onset also results in light (heavier) September sea ice area in the northern CAA (fig 4).

  11. A Community-Based, Environmental Chronic Disease Prevention Intervention to Improve Healthy Eating Psychosocial Factors and Behaviors in Indigenous Populations in the Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mead, Erin L.; Gittelsohn, Joel; Roache, Cindy; Corriveau, André; Sharma, Sangita

    2013-01-01

    Diet-related chronic diseases are highly prevalent among indigenous populations in the Canadian Arctic. A community-based, multi-institutional nutritional and lifestyle intervention--Healthy Foods North--was implemented to improve food-related psychosocial factors and behaviors among Inuit and Inuvialuit in four intervention communities (with two…

  12. Brown snow: A long-range transport event in the Canadian Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Welch, H.E.; Muir, D.C.G.; Billeck, B.N.; Lockhart, W.L.; Brunskill, G.J.; Kling, H.J. (Freshwater Inst., Winnipeg (Canada)); Olson, M.P. (Atmospheric Environment Service, Downsview, Ontario (Canada)); Lemoine, R.M. (Hardy BBT Ltd., Winnipeg, Manitoba (Canada))

    1991-02-01

    The authors document the occurrence of a long-range transport event that deposited thousands of tons of fine particulates on the District of Keewatin, central Canadian Arctic, {approximately}63 N. Air mass trajectories, clay mineral composition, soot particles, and visible organic remains point to Asian sources for the brown snow material, probably western China. Semivolatile organic pollutants detected in the brown snow included polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons ({Sigma}PAH), PCB congeners, and DDT-related compounds ({Sigma}DDT), polychlorinated camphenes (PCCs), as well as the herbicide trifuluralin and insecticides methoxychlor, endosulfan, and hexachlorocyclohexane (HCH). {Sigma}PAH, PCB, and PCC concentrations were within the range reported in other studies of Arctic snow but {Sigma}DDT levels were 2-10 times higher than previous reports. High molecular weight PAH may have been associated with soot particles in the brown snow but evidence for Asian sources of the pesticides was not strong because of unknown source signal strengths and possible atmospheric transformations of the compounds. Fluxes of these pollutants were also determined by analyzing sediment cores from two small headwater lakes near the sampling site. The quantities of pollutants deposited in this single event may have comprised a significant fraction (>10%) of total annual input {Sigma}PAH and {Sigma}DDT, as determined from lake sedimentation records.

  13. Exchanges of volume, heat and freshwater through the Canadian Arctic Archipelago: a numerical study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grivault, Nathan; Hu, Xianmin; Myers, Paul G.

    2016-04-01

    The Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA) is a tangle of shallow basins interlinked by narrow straits. It is the main pathway of liquid freshwater from the Arctic Ocean to North Atlantic. It also receives runoff from the Mackenzie River and the glaciers of the different islands that composes the archipelago. This study is based on a set of numerical experiments using a regional configuration of the coupled ocean/sea-ice general circulation model NEMO. We consider a long-term hindcast (1958-2014) as well as the more recent period (2002-2014) using high resolution inter-annual forcing from Environment Canada. We used an improved mapping of runoff to ensure correct amounts of freshwater are added to the system. We evaluate the flow pathways through the CAA, as well as the transport of volume, heat and freshwater. Results are evaluated against observational sections. We also look at the variability and the dynamics driving it. Passive tracers are used to complement the analysis.

  14. Nutritive and photosynthetic ecology of subsurface chlorophyll maxima in Canadian Arctic waters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Martin

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Assessments of carbon and nitrogen (N assimilation in Canadian Arctic waters confirmed the large contribution of subsurface chlorophyll maxima (SCM to total water-column production from spring to late fall. Although SCM communities showed acclimation to low irradiance and greater nitrate (NO3 availability, their productivity was generally constrained by light and temperature. During spring–early summer, most of the primary production at the SCM was sustained by NO3, with an average f-ratio (i.e., relative contribution of NO3 uptake to total N uptake of 0.74 ± 0.26. The seasonal decrease in NO3 availability and irradiance, coupled to the build up of ammonium (NH4+, favoured a transition toward a predominantly regenerative system (f-ratio = 0.37 ± 0.20 during late summer and fall. Results emphasize the need to adequately consider SCM when estimating primary production and to revisit ecosystem model parameters in highly stratified Arctic waters.

  15. Hybrid inventory, gravimetry and altimetry (HIGA) mass balance product for Greenland and the Canadian Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Colgan, W.; Abdalati, W.; Citterio, M.;

    2015-01-01

    We present a novel inversion algorithm that generates a mass balance field that is simultaneously consistent with independent observations of glacier inventory derived from optical imagery, cryosphere-attributed mass trends derived from satellite gravimetry, and ice surface elevation trends derived...... from airborne and satellite altimetry. We use this algorithm to assess mass balance across Greenland and the Canadian Arctic over the Sep-2003 to Oct-2009 period at 26 km resolution. We evaluate local algorithm-inferred mass balance against forty in situ point observations. This evaluation yields...... an RMSE of 0.15 mWE/a, and highlights a paucity of in situ observations from regions of high dynamic mass loss and peripheral glaciers. We assess mass losses of 212 ± 67 Gt/a to the Greenland ice sheet proper, 38 ± 11 Gt/a to peripheral glaciers in Greenland, and 42 ± 11 Gt/a to glaciers in the Canadian...

  16. Limnological characteristics of 56 lakes in the Central Canadian Arctic Treeline Region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John P. SMOL

    2003-02-01

    Full Text Available Measured environmental variables from 56 lakes across the Central Canadian Treeline Region exhibited clear limnological differences among subpolar ecozones, reflecting strong latitudinal changes in biome characteristics (e.g. vegetation, permafrost, climate. Principal Components Analysis (PCA clearly separated forested sites from tundra sites based on distinct differences in limnological characteristics. Increases in major ions and related variables (e.g. dissolved inorganic carbon, DIC were higher in boreal forest sites in comparison to arctic tundra sites. The higher values recorded in the boreal forest lakes may be indirectly related to differences in climatic factors in these zones, such as the degree of permafrost development, higher precipitation and runoff, duration of ice-cover on the lakes, and thicker and better soil development. Similar to trends observed in DIC, substantially higher values for dissolved organic carbon (DOC were measured in boreal forest lakes than in arctic tundra lakes. This was likely due to higher amounts of catchment-derived DOC entering the lakes from coniferous leaf litter sources. Relative to arctic tundra lakes, boreal forest lakes had higher nutrient concentrations, particularly total nitrogen (TN, likely due to warmer conditions, a longer growing season, and higher precipitation, which would enhance nutrient cycling and primary productivity. Results suggest that modern aquatic environments at opposite sides of the central Canadian arctic treeline (i.e. boreal forest and arctic tundra exhibit distinct differences in water chemistry and physical conditions. These limnological trends may provide important information on possible future changes with additional warming.

  17. Killer whale (Orcinus orca photo-identification in the eastern Canadian Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brent G. Young

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available We identified individual killer whales (Orcinus orca using recent (2004–09 photographs to obtain a minimum count of whales that use eastern Canadian Arctic waters. Fifty-three individuals were identified from nine different sightings; 11 individuals from western Hudson Bay sightings and 42 from the areas around northern and eastern Baffin Island. One whale was re-sighted: an adult female or large juvenile photographed 17 days and 375 km apart at Churchill, Manitoba, and off-shore of Rankin Inlet, Nunavut, in August 2007. With only one individual re-sighted, the number of individuals that use this area is likely much larger. No re-sightings occurred between Arctic killer whales and individuals photographed off the coast of Newfoundland. Our results represent the minimum number of killer whales sighted in eastern Canadian Arctic waters and provide the foundation for further killer whale research. Little is known about Arctic killer whales and, as a top predator, it is unclear what effect they have on Arctic marine ecosystems.

  18. Implications of the nutrition transition for vitamin D intake and status in Aboriginal groups in the Canadian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El Hayek Fares, Jessy; Weiler, Hope A

    2016-09-01

    Aboriginal Canadians have low intakes of vitamin D and are shifting away from consumption of traditional foods. Higher body mass index, skin pigmentation, and geographic latitude of residence further predispose Canadian Aboriginal populations to low vitamin D status. Low vitamin D status could compromise bone health and other health outcomes. Studies assessing vitamin D status of different Aboriginal groups are limited. The aim of this review is to examine the literature on vitamin D status and intakes of Canadian Aboriginal populations living in the Arctic. PubMed was searched for relevant articles published from 1983 to 2013. The prevalence of 25-hydroxy vitamin D deficiency ranged from 13.9% to 76.0% among children and adults in the summer. Furthermore, mean vitamin D intakes among all age groups were below the estimated average requirement. As vitamin D deficiency has been recently associated with chronic diseases, and Aboriginal populations living in the Arctic are at high risk for low vitamin D status, their vitamin D status should be assessed regularly across seasons.

  19. Temporal and spatial variability in sea-ice carbon:nitrogen ratios on Canadian Arctic shelves

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Niemi

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract To enhance the accuracy of carbon cycling models as applied to sea ice in the changing Arctic, we analyzed a large data set of particulate organic carbon (POC and nitrogen (PON measurements in first-year bottom sea ice (n = 257 from two Arctic shelves, the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and Beaufort Sea shelf, including dark winter and spring seasonal measurements. Wide ranges of sea-ice POC:PON ratios were observed during both the dark winter (12–46 mol:mol and spring (3–24 mol:mol periods. Sea-ice POC:PON ratios and chlorophyll a concentrations were significantly higher in the Archipelago versus the Beaufort Sea shelf (p < 0.01, yet there was a highly significant relationship between sea-ice POC and PON during spring for both shelves (r2 = 0.94. POC:PON ratios were not consistent over the range of measured POC and PON concentrations, justifying the use of a power function model to best describe the relationship between POC and PON. Distinct relationships between POC:PON ratios and chlorophyll-based biomass were observed for the dark winter and the spring: dark winter sea-ice POC:PON ratios decreased with increasing sea-ice biomass whereas spring POC:PON ratios increased with increasing sea-ice biomass. The transition from the dark period to the spring growth period in first-year sea ice represented a distinct stoichiometric shift in POC:PON ratios. Our results demonstrate that the Redfield ratio has limited applicability over the four-order of magnitude range of biomass concentrations observed in first-year sea ice on Arctic shelves. This study emphasizes the need for variable POC:PON stoichiometry in sea-ice biogeochemical models and budget estimates, in particular at high biomass concentrations and when considering seasonality outside of the spring period in first year ice. The use of a power function model for POC:PON relationships in sea ice is also recommended to better constrain carbon estimates in biogeochemical sea-ice models.

  20. Remote sensing the dynamics of suspended particles in the Mackenzie River plume (Canadian Arctic Ocean)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doxaran, D.; Ehn, J.; Bélanger, S.; Matsuoka, A.; Hooker, S.; Babin, M.

    2012-04-01

    Climate change significantly impacts Arctic shelf regions in terms of air temperature, ultraviolet radiation, melting of sea ice, precipitation, thawing of permafrost and coastal erosion. A direct consequence is an increase in Arctic river discharge with an expectation of increased delivery of organic carbon sequestered in high-latitute soils since the last glacial maximum. Monitoring the fluxes and fate of this terrigenous organic carbon is problematic in such sparsely populated regions unless remote sensing techniques can be developed to an operational stage. The main objective of this study is to develop an ocean colour algorithm to operationally monitor dynamics of suspended particulate matter (SPM) on the Mackenzie River continental shelf (Canadian Arctic Ocean) using satellite imagery. The water optical properties are documented across the study area and related to concentrations of SPM and particulate organic carbon (POC). Robust SPM and POC:SPM proxies are identified, such as the light backscattering and attenuation coefficients, and relationships are established between these optical and biogeochemical parameters. Following a semi-analytical approach, a regional SPM quantification relationship is obtained for the inversion of the water reflectance signal into SPM concentration. This relationship is validated based on independent field optical measurements. It is successfully applied to a selection of MODIS satellite data which allow estimating fluxes at the river mouth and monitoring the extension and dynamics of the Mackenzie River surface plume in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Good agreement is obtained with field observations representative of the whole water column in the river delta zone within which terrigenous SPM is mainly constrained (out of short periods of maximum river outflow). Most of the seaward export of SPM is observed to occur within the west side of the river mouth. Future work require the validation of the developed SPM regional algorithm based

  1. Hybrid inventory, gravimetry and altimetry (HIGA) mass balance product for Greenland and the Canadian Arctic

    OpenAIRE

    Colgan, W.; W. Abdalati; Citterio, M.; Csatho, B.; X. Fettweis; Luthcke, S.; G. Moholdt; M. Stober

    2014-01-01

    We present a novel inversion algorithm that generates a mass balance field that is simultaneously consistent with independent observations of glacier inventory derived from optical imagery, cryosphere-attributed mass changes derived from satellite gravimetry, and ice surface elevation changes derived from airborne and satellite altimetry. We use this algorithm to assess mass balance across Greenland and the Canadian Arctic over the December 2003 to December ...

  2. Hybrid inventory, gravimetry and altimetry (HIGA mass balance product for Greenland and the Canadian Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W. Colgan

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available We present a novel inversion algorithm that generates a mass balance field that is simultaneously consistent with independent observations of glacier inventory derived from optical imagery, cryosphere-attributed mass changes derived from satellite gravimetry, and ice surface elevation changes derived from airborne and satellite altimetry. We use this algorithm to assess mass balance across Greenland and the Canadian Arctic over the December 2003 to December 2010 period at 26 km resolution. We assess a total mass loss of 316 ± 37 Gt a−1 over Greenland and the Canadian Arctic, with 217 ± 20 Gt a−1 being attributed to the Greenland Ice Sheet proper, and 38 ± 6 Gt a−1 and 50 ± 8 Gt a−1 being attributed to peripheral glaciers in Greenland and the Canadian Arctic, respectively. These absolute values are dependent on the gravimetry-derived spherical harmonic representation we invert. Our attempt to validate local values of algorithm-inferred mass balance reveals a paucity of in situ observations. At four sites, where direct comparison between algorithm-inferred and in situ mass balance is valid, we find an RMSD of 0.18 m WE a−1. Differencing algorithm-inferred mass balance with previously modelled surface mass balance, in order to solve the ice dynamic portion of mass balance as a residual, allows the transient glacier continuity equation to be spatially partitioned across Greenland.

  3. Feasibility of a Sea Route through the Canadian Arctic

    OpenAIRE

    Saran Somanathan; Peter C Flynn; Jozef K Szymanski

    2007-01-01

    One predicted consequence of global warming is the thinning of Arctic sea ice. This raises the question whether the fabled Northwest Passage can be used for year round ship traffic, and whether the distance saved by using the polar route justifies the incremental investment in ice-breaking ships. A conceptual study using computer simulation was conducted to evaluate the Northwest Passage versus the Panama Canal routes between eastern North America and Japan. Recent historical ice conditions w...

  4. Modeling ocean and sea ice dynamics of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago: Aspects of forcing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wekerle, Claudia; Wang, Qiang; Danilov, Sergey; Myers, Paul G.; Jung, Thomas; Schröter, Jens

    2013-04-01

    The Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA) is one of the main pathways for freshwater exiting the Arctic Ocean. Freshwater exported to the North Atlantic may influence the deep water formation in the Labrador Sea, and thus the meridional overturning circulation. Modeling ocean and sea ice conditions of the CAA is difficult because of narrow straits and complex coastlines. The Finite-Element Sea-ice Ocean circulation Model (FESOM) configured on a global mesh is applied to assess the volume, freshwater and sea ice transports through the CAA. With a mesh resolution of 5 km in the CAA we are able to accurately resolve complex coastlines. Outside the CAA the mesh is refined to 24 km north of 55°N with a global background resolution of 1.5°. In this study, first, it is shown that the transports modeled with FESOM correlate well with the available observational data. Second, the model is used to learn about the impact of different atmospheric forcing datasets differing in spatial and temporal resolution (CORE 2 and the Reforecast dataset from Environment Canada). The CORE 2 dataset is on the T62 grid, which is coarse compared to the Reforecast dataset with grid resolution of 0.45° longitude and 0.3° latitude. The temporal resolution of the Reforecast dataset is higher than the CORE 2 dataset (one hourly and 6-hourly data, respectively, for wind, surface temperature and specific humidity fields). The representation of sea ice in the CAA can be improved by using the high resolution atmospheric forcing.

  5. Parasites in grizzly bears from the central Canadian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gau, R J; Kutz, S; Elkin, B T

    1999-07-01

    Standardized flotation techniques were used to survey 56 grizzly bear (Ursus arctos) fecal samples for parasites. The samples were collected during the spring and autumn of 1995 and 1996 in the central Arctic of the Northwest Territories (Canada). Parasites of the genera Nematodirus, gastrointestinal coccidia, and an unidentified first stage protostrongylid larva are reported for the first time from grizzly bear feces in North America. Parasites of the genera Diphyllobothrium and Baylisascaris also were collected. Prevalence of gastrointestinal parasites were significantly different between the spring and autumn seasons (31% and 58% respectively). Thus, we provide evidence supporting the theory that bears void gastrointestinal parasites before hibernation.

  6. Sedimentological and Paleoecological Records From the Central and Western Canadian Arctic in Relation to ice Core Paleoclimatic Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gajewski, K.; Peros, M.; Paull, T.; Fortin, M.; Finkelstein, S.; Ravindra, R.

    2007-12-01

    A series of lake sediment cores spanning the Holocene from across the central and western Canadian Arctic document ecosystem responses to climatic variations on several timescales. Sediment parameters (grain size, LOI, magnetic susceptibility) analyzed at very high resolution are used to quantify hydroclimatic variability at the watershed scale. Pollen, diatom, biogenic silica and chironomid series measured at high resolution show that the responses of terrestrial and aquatic organisms to millennial-scale climate variations are coeval with those variations interpreted from Greenland and Canadian ice core records. Climatic change caused large fluctuations in terrestrial production, as measured by pollen influx and concentrations, although biodiversity changes were less significant. Diatom stratigraphies are more complex, and show not only production changes but also diversity changes. These fluctuations are ultimately controlled by climate, but the direction and magnitude of changes in diatom assemblages are often determined by local factors such as habitat availability, lake size and nutrient status. Interpretation of chironomid records in relation to diatom-derived proxies for primary production indicate the combined impact of food source and climate on chironomid populations. Climate variations during the Holocene and the associated ecological impacts are sometimes comparable in rate and magnitude to those occurring now, suggesting paleoecological records from Arctic lakes can be used to better predict future impacts of climatic change.

  7. Irradiation as an alternative for disinfection of domestic waste in the Canadian Arctic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    This study evaluated the technical and economic feasibility of various methods for disinfecting wastewater in the Canadian Arctic with specific reference to gamma radiation. More conventional disinfection practices, such as chlorination, chlorination-dechlorination, and ozonation were compared to gamma radiation along with ultraviolet irradiation and lime disinfection. The quality of lagoon effluent, highly diluted (weak) sewage, holding tank wastes and honey-bag wastes, which are the typical waste types found in northern communities, was established from data available in the literature. Further literature reviews were undertaken to establish a data base for design and effectiveness of disinfection systems operated in cold climates. Capital and operating costs for all technically feasible disinfection process alternates were estimated based on historical cost data adjusted to 1977 for the construction and instalation of similar systems in the north. The costs of equipment, chemicals, fuel and electrical power were obtained from suppliers. The environmental impact of each of the disinfection processes was reviewed with emphasis on gamma irradiation. Safety and health aspects were also considered. The study concluded that gamma irradiation was capable of providing safe, reliable disinfection for concentrated honey-bag and holding wastes. Pilot-scale testing was recommended prior to construction of full-scale disinfection facilities. For lagoon effluents and weak sewage, gamma irradiation was not cost competitive with other alternates; rather chlorination-dechlorination was found to be the most cost-effective and environmentally acceptable alternative

  8. Biomarker responses associated with halogenated organic contaminants in northern fulmars (Fulmarus glacialis) breeding in the Canadian Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Braune, Birgit M., E-mail: birgit.braune@ec.gc.ca [Environment Canada, National Wildlife Research Centre, Carleton University, Raven Road, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0H3 (Canada); Trudeau, Suzanne [Environment Canada, National Wildlife Research Centre, Carleton University, Raven Road, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0H3 (Canada); Jeffrey, Deborah A. [Bancroft, Ontario, K0L 1C0 (Canada); Mallory, Mark L. [Environment Canada, Box 1714, Iqaluit, Nunavut, X0A 0H0 (Canada)

    2011-10-15

    We examined relationships between hepatic concentrations of halogenated organic contaminants and ethoxyresorufin O-deethylase (EROD) activity and retinoid (vitamin A) concentrations in livers, as well as retinol and thyroid hormone (TT{sub 3}, TT{sub 4}) levels in blood plasma, of northern fulmars at two breeding colonies in the Canadian High Arctic. Biomarker levels or responses did not differ significantly between males and females at either colony, nor was there any significant difference between colonies. No significant relationships were found between thyroid hormone or hepatic retinoid concentrations and any of the dioxin-like compounds or their Toxic Equivalents (TEQs) although significant positive correlations were found with plasma retinol (p < 0.03). EROD activity was significantly correlated with hepatic dioxin-like compounds and their TEQs (p < 0.001) as well as total PCBs (p < 0.01), which suggests that EROD induction occurs in northern fulmars at environmentally-relevant concentrations. - Highlights: > EROD induction occurs in northern fulmars at environmentally-relevant concentrations. > No relationships between hepatic retinoid or plasma thyroid hormone levels and dioxin-like compounds or TEQs. > Biomarker responses did not differ between males and females or between colonies. - EROD induction occurs in northern fulmars in the Canadian Arctic at environmentally-relevant concentrations.

  9. Decadal-Scale Increases in Dissolved Carbon Flux from the Western Canadian Arctic to the Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tank, S. E.; Striegl, R. G.; McClelland, J. W.; Kokelj, S. V.

    2014-12-01

    The chemical signature of large rivers has a clear effect on the chemistry and biology of the nearshore ocean. At the same time, the flux of riverine constituents to coastal environments can be used to understand changes occurring over broad terrestrial landscapes. This is particularly relevant in the Arctic, where rivers have a disproportionate impact on nearshore ocean function. Additionally, change is playing out rapidly in Arctic regions, as permafrost thaw and changes in temperature and hydrology are exposing previously frozen soils, changing the nature of hydrological linkages between land and water, and affecting the seasonality of riverine chemistry and flux. Here, we examine a 40-year dataset of point-measurement alkalinity (largely dissolved inorganic carbon) and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentrations near the mouth of the Mackenzie River, in addition to similar data from four of the Mackenzie's major sub-catchments. These datasets are coupled with continuous discharge records, and capture flow from the fourth largest river discharging to the Arctic Ocean. Trends near the Mackenzie mouth show that annual fluxes of both alkalinity and DOC are increasing over time, with the proportional changes in DOC (approximately 16% per decade) being much greater than those for alkalinity (approximately 4% per decade). Seasonally, this increase in total flux occurs largely in the winter and late summer, for both constituents. Sub-catchment datasets indicate that these fluxes are increasing in northern, but not southern, sub-catchment regions. These results have clear implications for nearshore ocean function in the western Canadian Arctic. Increases in DOC may fuel increased bacterial metabolism, while differences in the magnitude of change in alkalinity and DOC flux may modify coastal aragonite saturation. Overall, the changing flux of dissolved carbon near the mouth of the Mackenzie River documents broad-scale changes in the carbon cycle of this region, both on

  10. The Endangered Arctic, the Arctic as Resource Frontier: Canadian News Media Narratives of Climate Change and the North.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoddart, Mark C J; Smith, Jillian

    2016-08-01

    The Arctic is one of the most radically altered parts of the world due to climate change, with significant social and cultural impacts as a result. Using discourse network analysis and qualitative textual analysis of articles published in the Globe and Mail and National Post during the period 2006 to 2010, we identify and analyze key frames that interpret the implications of climate change on the Arctic. We examine Canadian national news media coverage to ask: How does the Arctic enter media coverage of climate change? Is there evidence of a climate justice discourse in relation to regional disparities in the risks and harms of climate change between northern and southern Canada? Climate change in the Arctic is often framed through the lens of Canadian national interests, which downplays climate-related social impacts that are already occurring at subnational political and geographical scales. L'Arctique est une des régions du monde la plus radicalement altérée par le changement climatique, menant comme résultat des importants changements sociaux et culturels. En utilisant l'analyse des réseaux de discours ainsi que l'analyse textuelle qualitative des articles publiés dans le Globe and Mail et le National Post de 2006 à 2010, nous identifions and analysons des cadres clés qui servent à interpréter les conséquences du changement climatique dans l'Arctique. Nous examinons la couverture des médias nationaux canadiens pour pouvoir demander : comment est-ce que l'Arctique s'insère dans la couverture médiatique du changement climatique? Est-ce qu'il y a de la preuve d'un discours de la justice climatique en relation des disparités régionales des risques et méfaits du changement climatique entre le Canada du nord et du sud? Le changement climatique dans l'Arctique est souvent encadré à travers le prisme des intérêts nationaux canadiens, ce qui minimise les impacts sociaux reliés au climat qui se produisent actuellement aux échelons sous

  11. The Endangered Arctic, the Arctic as Resource Frontier: Canadian News Media Narratives of Climate Change and the North.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stoddart, Mark C J; Smith, Jillian

    2016-08-01

    The Arctic is one of the most radically altered parts of the world due to climate change, with significant social and cultural impacts as a result. Using discourse network analysis and qualitative textual analysis of articles published in the Globe and Mail and National Post during the period 2006 to 2010, we identify and analyze key frames that interpret the implications of climate change on the Arctic. We examine Canadian national news media coverage to ask: How does the Arctic enter media coverage of climate change? Is there evidence of a climate justice discourse in relation to regional disparities in the risks and harms of climate change between northern and southern Canada? Climate change in the Arctic is often framed through the lens of Canadian national interests, which downplays climate-related social impacts that are already occurring at subnational political and geographical scales. L'Arctique est une des régions du monde la plus radicalement altérée par le changement climatique, menant comme résultat des importants changements sociaux et culturels. En utilisant l'analyse des réseaux de discours ainsi que l'analyse textuelle qualitative des articles publiés dans le Globe and Mail et le National Post de 2006 à 2010, nous identifions and analysons des cadres clés qui servent à interpréter les conséquences du changement climatique dans l'Arctique. Nous examinons la couverture des médias nationaux canadiens pour pouvoir demander : comment est-ce que l'Arctique s'insère dans la couverture médiatique du changement climatique? Est-ce qu'il y a de la preuve d'un discours de la justice climatique en relation des disparités régionales des risques et méfaits du changement climatique entre le Canada du nord et du sud? Le changement climatique dans l'Arctique est souvent encadré à travers le prisme des intérêts nationaux canadiens, ce qui minimise les impacts sociaux reliés au climat qui se produisent actuellement aux échelons sous

  12. Regional Modelling of Air Quality in the Canadian Arctic: Impact of marine shipping and North American wild fire emissions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, W.; Beagley, S. R.; Zhang, J.; Cousineau, S.; Sassi, M.; Munoz-Alpizar, R.; Racine, J.; Menard, S.; Chen, J.

    2015-12-01

    Arctic atmospheric composition is strongly influenced by long-range transport from mid-latitudes as well as processes occurring in the Arctic locally. Using an on-line air quality prediction model GEM-MACH, simulations were carried out for the 2010 northern shipping season (April - October) over a regional Arctic domain. North American wildfire emissions and Arctic shipping emissions were represented, along with other anthropogenic and biogenic emissions. Sensitivity studies were carried out to investigate the principal sources and processes affecting air quality in the Canadian Northern and Arctic regions. In this paper, we present an analysis of sources, transport, and removal processes on the ambient concentrations and atmospheric loading of various pollutants with air quality and climate implications, such as, O3, NOx, SO2, CO, and aerosols (sulfate, black carbon, and organic carbon components). Preliminary results from a model simulation of a recent summertime Arctic field campaign will also be presented.

  13. Trophodynamics of some PFCs and BFRs in a western Canadian Arctic marine food web.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomy, Gregg T; Pleskach, Kerri; Ferguson, Steve H; Hare, Jonathon; Stern, Gary; Macinnis, Gordia; Marvin, Chris H; Loseto, Lisa

    2009-06-01

    The trophodynamics of per- and polyfluorinated compounds and bromine-based flame retardants were examined in components of a marine food web from the western Canadian Arctic. The animals studied and their relative trophic status in the food web, established using stable isotopes of nitrogen (delta15N), were beluga (Delphinapterus leucas) > ringed seal (Phoca hispida) > Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida) > Pacific herring (Clupea pallasi) approximately equal to Arctic cisco (Coregonus autumnalis) > pelagic amphipod (Themisto libellula) > Arctic copepod (Calanus hyperboreus). For the brominated diphenyl ethers, the lipid adjusted concentrations of the seven congeners analyzed (Sigma7BDEs: -47, -85, -99, -100, -153, -154, and -209) ranged from 205.4 +/- 52.7 ng/g in Arctic cod to 2.6 +/- 0.4 ng/g in ringed seals. Mean Sigma7BDEs concentrations in Arctic copepods, 16.4 ng/g (n = 2, composite sample), were greater than those in the top trophic level (TL) marine mammals and suggests that (i) Arctic copepods are an important dietary component that delivers BDEs to the food web and (ii) because these compounds are bioaccumulative, metabolism and depletion of BDE congeners in top TL mammals is an important biological process. There were differences in the concentration profiles of the isomers of hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD) in the food web. The most notable difference was observed for beluga, where the alpha-isomer was enriched (accounting for approximately 90% of the SigmaHBCD body burden), relative to its primary prey species, Arctic cod, where the alpha-isomer accounted for only 20% of the SigmaHBCD body burden (beta: 4% and gamma: 78%). For the C8-C11 perfluorinated carboxylic acids, the trophic magnification factors (TMFs) were all greater than unity and increased with increasing carbon chain length. PFOS and its neutral precursor, PFOSA, also had TMF values greater than one. There were also pronounced differences in the PFOSA to PFOS ratio in ringed seal (0.04) and in

  14. Spatial trends and factors affecting variation of organochlorine contaminants levels in Canadian Arctic beluga (Delphinapterus leucas).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, G A; Macdonald, C R; Armstrong, D; Dunn, B; Fuchs, C; Harwood, L; Muir, D C G; Rosenberg, B

    2005-12-01

    Organochlorine pesticides and PCBs were analysed in blubber from beluga (Delphinapterus leucas), or white whales, collected at 15 sites in the Canadian Arctic between 1993 and 2001. The objective of the study was to define and interpret the spatial trends of major organic contaminants in northern beluga in terms of sources and transport pathways, and the biological factors influencing accumulation. When compared on a lipid weight basis, the concentrations of beta-HCH, cis-CHL and SigmaCHL, cis-nonachlor, heptachlor epoxide and p,p'-DDT were significantly higher in males than females at all five sites in the eastern Arctic where the two sexes were harvested. The differences were attributed to losses from the females during fetal development and lactation as reported in previous studies. Major compounds increased with age in males at most sites, however the lack of a significant increase with age at some sites was in part due to high organochlorine concentrations in young year classes (2-5 years), particularly at eastern sites such as Iqaluit and Pangnirtung. Lower concentrations of SigmaHCH and SigmaDDT compounds in young males in 2001 relative to 1995 at Hendrickson Island could be due to declining levels in the environment, changes in the diet, or differences in organochlorine loads transferred from the female after birth. Age-corrected least square mean concentrations in males showed significantly higher levels of many compounds, such as p,p'-DDE and SigmaCHB, at south Baffin Island sites than those in the west. Two notable exceptions were HCBz and beta-HCH which were higher in the west. Methoxyclor was detected in males at Sanikiluaq (58 ng g-1) and in both sexes at Kimmirut, but at no other sites. Principal component analysis grouped the 16 sites into five major groupings based on the similarity of normalised organochlorine pesticide and PCB levels. Sites from the western Arctic were grouped by higher proportions of HCBz, beta-HCH and gamma-HCH and higher

  15. The role of seasonal migration in the near-total loss of caribou on south-central Canadian Arctic Islands

    OpenAIRE

    Frank L. Miller; Samuel J. Barry; Wendy A. Calvert

    2007-01-01

    Extended: In 1980 the caribou (Rangifer tarandus) on Prince of Wales, Russell, and Somerset islands represented a healthy geographic population of an Arctic-island caribou ecotype on the southern tier of Canadian Arctic Islands. Those caribou exhibited complex patterns of seasonal range occupancy, involving annual seasonal migrations between and among the three islands and Boothia Peninsula (Miller et al., 1982, 2005; Miller, 1990). A large segment of the population migrated annually from the...

  16. Landscape and hydrologic changes in the permafrost regions of the Western Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsh, P.

    2012-12-01

    of large shrub patches may be either deeper or shallower active layer depths than the surrounding tundra areas, depending on the leaf area index, the degree of shrub bending during the winter, and snow accumulation. Second, in contrast to many areas in Alaska and Siberia where increased rates of lake drainage have been reported, the rate of lake drainage in the Western Canadian Arctic has been decreasing over the past 50 years. The primary factors causing lake drainage in this region are high lake levels and winter cracking of ice wedges in the area immediately around the lake. Hydrologic modelling has suggested that summer lake levels have not changed significantly over the last 50 years, and therefore are not responsible for the decrease in drainage. However, the role of factors such as snow dams at lake outlets that result in high spring water levels, or the offsetting factors of warmer, but less snowy winters on ice wedge cracking are not well understood. As a result, further research is required to better understand how these lakes will respond to future changes in climate. Given the potential changes to methane dynamics in areas of changing permafrost, there is an urgent need to better understand ongoing, and future, changes in the landscape of these permafrost regions.

  17. Persistent halogenated organic contaminants and mercury in northern fulmars (Fulmarus glacialis) from the Canadian Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Braune, Birgit M., E-mail: birgit.braune@ec.gc.c [Environment Canada, National Wildlife Research Centre, Carleton University, Raven Road, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0H3 (Canada); Mallory, Mark L. [Environment Canada, Box 1714, Iqaluit, Nunavut, X0A 0H0 (Canada); Butt, Craig M.; Mabury, Scott A. [Department of Chemistry, University of Toronto, 80 St. George Street, Toronto, Ontario, M5S 3H6 (Canada); Muir, Derek C.G. [Environment Canada, Canada Centre for Inland Waters, 867 Lakeshore Road, Burlington, Ontario, L7R 4A6 (Canada)

    2010-12-15

    Northern fulmars from two breeding colonies in the Canadian Arctic, Cape Vera and Prince Leopold Island, were analyzed for organochlorine pesticides, PCBs, perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) and total mercury (Hg). Hepatic concentrations of organochlorines and Hg were highest in the male fulmars from Cape Vera. Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) concentrations did not vary significantly between sexes or colonies. However, concentrations of the perfluorinated carboxylates (PFCAs) were higher in fulmars from Cape Vera than Prince Leopold Island. The C{sub 11}-C{sub 15} PFCAs averaged 90% of the PFCA profile at both colonies. Polychorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins (PCDDs), dibenzofurans (PCDFs) and non-ortho PCBs (NO-PCBs) were measured only in birds from Prince Leopold Island. Concentrations of PCDDs, PCDFs, NO-PCBs and Toxic Equivalents (TEQs) did not differ significantly between sexes. {Sigma}TEQ was comprised mainly of {Sigma}TEQ{sub PCDF}. Concentrations of Hg and the persistent halogenated compounds reported in this study were below published toxicological threshold values for wild birds. - Northern fulmars in the Canadian Arctic demonstrate sex-specific, colony-specific, and regional differences in contaminant profiles.

  18. Temporal trends of mercury in eggs of five sympatrically breeding seabird species in the Canadian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braune, Birgit M; Gaston, Anthony J; Mallory, Mark L

    2016-07-01

    We compared temporal trends of total mercury (Hg) in eggs of five seabird species breeding at Prince Leopold Island in the Canadian high Arctic. As changes in trophic position over time have the potential to influence contaminant temporal trends, Hg concentrations were adjusted for trophic position (measured as δ(15)N). Adjusted Hg concentrations in eggs of thick-billed murres (Uria lomvia) and northern fulmars (Fulmarus glacialis) increased from 1975 to the 1990s, followed by a plateauing of levels from the 1990s to 2014. Trends of adjusted Hg concentrations in eggs of murres, fulmars, black guillemots (Cepphus grylle) and black-legged kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla) had negative slopes between 1993 and 2013. Adjusted Hg concentrations in glaucous gull (Larus hyperboreus) eggs decreased by 50% from 1993 to 2003 before starting to increase again. Glaucous gull eggs had the highest Hg concentrations followed by black guillemot eggs, and black-legged kittiwake eggs had the lowest concentrations consistently in the five years compared between 1993 and 2013. Based on published toxicological thresholds for Hg in eggs, there is little concern for adverse reproductive effects due to Hg exposure in these birds, although the levels in glaucous gull eggs warrant future scrutiny given the increase in Hg concentrations observed in recent years. There is evidence that the Hg trends observed reflect changing anthropogenic Hg emissions. It remains unclear, however, to what extent exposure to Hg on the overwintering grounds influences the Hg trends observed in the seabird eggs at Prince Leopold Island. Future research should focus on determining the extent to which Hg exposure on the breeding grounds versus the overwintering areas contribute to the trends observed in the eggs. PMID:27074200

  19. The contribution of Alaskan, Siberian, and Canadian coastal polynas to the cold halocline layer of the Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavalieri, Donald J.; Martin, Seelye

    1994-01-01

    Numerous Arctic Ocean circulation and geochemical studies suggest that ice growth in polynyas over the Alaskan, Siberian, and Canadian continental shelves is a source of cold, saline water which contributes to the maintenance of the Arctic Ocean halocline. The purpose of this study is to estimate for the 1978-1987 winters the contributions of Arctic coastal polynyas to the cold halocline layer of the Arctic Ocean. The study uses a combination of satellite, oceanographic, and weather data to calculate the brine fluxes from the polynyas; then an oceanic box model is used to calculate their contributions to the cold halocline layer of the Arctic Ocean. This study complements and corrects a previous study of dense water production by coastal polynyas in the Barents, Kara, and Laptev Seas.

  20. Recontinentalizing Canada: Arctic Ice’s Liquid Modernity and the Imagining of a Canadian Archipelago

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Phillip Vannini

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Studying mobile actor networks of moving people, objects, images, and discourses, in conjunction with changing time-spaces, offers a unique opportunity to understand important, and yet relatively neglected, “relational material” dynamics of mobility. A key example of this phenomenon is the recontinentalization of Canada amidst dramatically changing articulations of the meanings and boundaries of the Canadian land-ice-ocean mass. A notable reason why Canada is being re-articulated in current times is the extensiveness of Arctic thawing. The reconfiguration of space and “motility” options in the Arctic constitutes an example of how “materiality and sociality produce themselves together.” In this paper we examine the possibilities and risks connected to this recontinentalization of Canada’s North. In exploring the past, present, and immediate future of this setting, we advance the paradigmatic view that Canada’s changing Arctic is the key element in a process of transformation of Canada into a peninsular body encompassed within a larger archipelagic entity: a place more intimately attuned to its immense (and growing coastal and insular routes.

  1. Arctic Solutions The Frozen (Thawing) Relations of the High North

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    It's cold, inhospitable and deadly. The image of the Arctic in years past is one of bewilderment, ignorance and awe. How the image of the Arctic has changed in recent years can be directly linked to our recognition that the Arctic has a great deal to offer in meeting the basic needs of future generations. Although we are still in awe of the Arctic's cruel beauty, new technologies are making it easier to explore the once unmanageable environment. The Arctic has moved into the mainstream with a host of suitors jockeying for position in the race to possess the Arctic and all that it contains. To highlight this increased interest, Russia's 'National Security Until 2020' initiative, has upgraded the High North to one of Russia's main priorities and identifies the Arctic as liable to produce military conflict in the future linked to competition for the Arctic's abundant raw materials.1 Even Canada, a peaceful and respectful country, has stepped outside the box of traditional Canadian rhetoric by giving Canada's Northern Strategy a tag line: 'Our North, our heritage, our future'. The Arctic is increasingly viewed as central to meeting the challenges of an ever changing world where climate change and economic benefit drive international agreements and policies. However Canada and Russia are not the only actors here. The other Arctic Five states: Denmark, Norway, and the United States of America all lay claims to some area or activity within the Arctic region. The Arctic is a unique part of this world, one that has been left largely untouched by human hands, and one that is on the brink of being changed forever. To fully understand Arctic issues, resource figures must be taken into account. Every nation involved in the Arctic debate has considered and based its policies on its set of numbers and resource estimates. A U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in 2009 put Arctic resource figures in the range of thirty percent of the remaining world reserves of natural gas and ten percent

  2. Transport Regimes of Air Masses Affecting the Tropospheric Composition of the Canadian and European Arctic During RACEPAC 2014 and NETCARE 2014/2015

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bozem, H.; Hoor, P. M.; Koellner, F.; Kunkel, D.; Schneider, J.; Schulz, C.; Herber, A. B.; Borrmann, S.; Wendisch, M.; Ehrlich, A.; Leaitch, W. R.; Willis, M. D.; Burkart, J.; Thomas, J. L.; Abbatt, J.

    2015-12-01

    The Arctic is warming much faster than any other place in the world and undergoes a rapid change dominated by a changing climate in this region. The impact of polluted air masses traveling to the Arctic from various remote sources significantly contributes to the observed climate change, in contrast there are additional local emission sources contributing to the level of pollutants (trace gases and aerosol). Processes affecting the emission and transport of these pollutants are not well understood and need to be further investigated. We present aircraft based trace gas measurements in the Arctic during RACEPAC (2014) and NETCARE (2014 and 2015) with the Polar 6 aircraft of Alfred Wegener Institute (AWI) covering an area from 134°W to 17°W and 68°N to 83°N. We focus on cloud, aerosol and general transport processes of polluted air masses into the high Arctic. Based on CO and CO2 measurements and kinematic 10-day back trajectories we analyze the transport regimes prevalent during spring (RACEPAC 2014 and NETCARE 2015) and summer (NETCARE 2014) in the observed region. Whereas the eastern part of the Canadian Arctic is affected by air masses with their origin in Asia, in the central and western parts of the Canadian and European Arctic air masses from North America are predominant at the time of the measurement. In general the more northern parts of the Arctic were relatively unaffected by pollution from mid-latitudes since air masses mostly travel within the polar dome, being quite isolated. Associated mixing ratios of CO and CO2 fit into the seasonal cycle observed at NOAA ground stations throughout the Arctic, but show a more mid-latitudinal characteristic at higher altitudes. The transition is remarkably sharp and allows for a chemical definition of the polar dome. At low altitudes, synoptic disturbances transport polluted air masses from mid-latitudes into regions of the polar dome. These air masses contribute to the Arctic pollution background, but also

  3. Sinistral Displacement of the Pearya Terrane along the Canadian Arctic Margin

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClelland, W.; Malone, S.; von Gosen, W.; Piepjohn, K.; Läufer, A.

    2012-12-01

    Structural and geochronologic observations from the Pearya terrane, northern Ellesmere Island, provide insight into the origin of the Canadian Arctic margin. The composite terrane records amalgamation of various fragments between 475 and 460 Ma and was accreted via sinistral transpression to the northern margin of Laurentia by 425 Ma (Trettin et al., 1991). New U-Pb SHRIMP-RG (USGS/Stanford) data from igneous rocks of the Pearya terrane help refine magmatic components of the composite terrane to include Neoproterozoic arc plutons (ca 960-970 Ma), a Cambrian syenite-monzodiorite complex (Ward Hunt pluton: 539 ± 4 Ma), Ordovician arc magmatism (Ayles Fiord pluton: 475 ± 3 Ma; Cape Richards pluton: 464 ± 3 Ma) and Devonian-Carboniferous magmatism (Petersen Bay plutonic complex: 332 ± 2 Ma). Samples from the Ordovician Taconite River Formation provide unimodal peaks characteristic of arc settings with LA-ICPMS (Arizona LaserChron Center) detrital zircon U/Pb ages ranging from 440 to 480 Ma. The Pearya terrane is cut by the Pearya shear zone, a major ductile structure defined by a thick zone of sub-vertical mylonites that consistently display a sinistral sense of shear. Mylonites exposed at Cape Columbia are cross-cut by leucocratic pegmatite dikes that give a U-Pb zircon age of 453 ± 3.5 Ma. Quartz and feldspar deformation textures coupled with the orientation of a studied dike are consistent with emplacement during late sinistral deformation. Displacement on the Pearya shear zone at or prior to 450 Ma is interpreted to record translation of the Pearya terrane toward or along the north Laurentian margin, outboard of the Franklinian basin, in the early stages of the Baltica-Laurentia Caledonian collision. The Pearya shear zone merges with or is truncated by the Petersen Bay fault, a complex northwest-southeast contractional structure that marks a segment of the Ellesmerian boundary between the Pearya terrane and Franklinian basin. Major structures within the Pearya

  4. Optical characterisation of suspended particles in the Mackenzie River plume (Canadian Arctic Ocean) and implications for ocean colour remote sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doxaran, D.; Ehn, J.; Bélanger, S.; Matsuoka, A.; Hooker, S.; Babin, M.

    2012-08-01

    Climate change significantly impacts Arctic shelf regions in terms of air temperature, ultraviolet radiation, melting of sea ice, precipitation, thawing of permafrost and coastal erosion. Direct consequences have been observed on the increasing Arctic river flow and a large amount of organic carbon sequestered in soils at high latitudes since the last glacial maximum can be expected to be delivered to the Arctic Ocean during the coming decade. Monitoring the fluxes and fate of this terrigenous organic carbon is problematic in such sparsely populated regions unless remote sensing techniques can be developed and proved to be operational. The main objective of this study is to develop an ocean colour algorithm to operationally monitor dynamics of suspended particulate matter (SPM) on the Mackenzie River continental shelf (Canadian Arctic Ocean) using satellite imagery. The water optical properties are documented across the study area and related to concentrations of SPM and particulate organic carbon (POC). Robust SPM and POC : SPM proxies are identified, such as the light backscattering and attenuation coefficients, and relationships are established between these optical and biogeochemical parameters. Following a semi-analytical approach, a regional SPM quantification relationship is obtained for the inversion of the water reflectance signal into SPM concentration. This relationship is reproduced based on independent field optical measurements. It is successfully applied to a selection of MODIS satellite data which allow estimating fluxes at the river mouth and monitoring the extension and dynamics of the Mackenzie River surface plume in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Good agreement is obtained with field observations representative of the whole water column in the river delta zone where terrigenous SPM is mainly constrained (out of short periods of maximum river outflow). Most of the seaward export of SPM is observed to occur within the west side of the river mouth. Future

  5. Optical Characterisation of Suspended Particles in the Mackenzie River Plume (Canadian Arctic Ocean) and Implications for Ocean Colour Remote Sensing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doxaran, D.; Ehn, J.; Belanger, S.; Matsuoka, A.; Hooker, S.; Babin, M.

    2012-01-01

    Climate change significantly impacts Arctic shelf regions in terms of air temperature, ultraviolet radiation, melting of sea ice, precipitation, thawing of permafrost and coastal erosion. Direct consequences have been observed on the increasing Arctic river flow and a large amount of organic carbon sequestered in soils at high latitudes since the last glacial maximum can be expected to be delivered to the Arctic Ocean during the coming decade. Monitoring the fluxes and fate of this terrigenous organic carbon is problematic in such sparsely populated regions unless remote sensing techniques can be developed and proved to be operational. The main objective of this study is to develop an ocean colour algorithm to operationally monitor dynamics of suspended particulate matter (SPM) on the Mackenzie River continental shelf (Canadian Arctic Ocean) using satellite imagery. The water optical properties are documented across the study area and related to concentrations of SPM and particulate organic carbon (POC). Robust SPM and POC : SPM proxies are identified, such as the light backscattering and attenuation coefficients, and relationships are established between these optical and biogeochemical parameters. Following a semi-analytical approach, a regional SPM quantification relationship is obtained for the inversion of the water reflectance signal into SPM concentration. This relationship is reproduced based on independent field optical measurements. It is successfully applied to a selection of MODIS satellite data which allow estimating fluxes at the river mouth and monitoring the extension and dynamics of the Mackenzie River surface plume in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Good agreement is obtained with field observations representative of the whole water column in the river delta zone where terrigenous SPM is mainly constrained (out of short periods of maximum river outflow). Most of the seaward export of SPM is observed to occur within the west side of the river mouth. Future

  6. Geothermal inversion of Canadian Arctic ground temperatures and effect of permafrost aggradation at emergent shorelines

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Alan E.; Wang, Kelin

    2008-07-01

    We apply traditional geothermal spectrum inversion to precision temperature logs and thermal conductivity from 10 wells in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (75° to 81°N). Sites lie beyond the Holocene marine limit, and no effect of deep permafrost dynamics is expected. Ground surface temperature (GST) changes correlate with the Little Ice Age and Little Climatic Optimum with average amplitudes relative to 1980 of -2.7 K and +1.6 K, respectively. Results correlate broadly with similar reconstructions for this area and Greenland ice cap holes GRIP and Dye-3 to the southeast. An offshore site in 244 m water yields a Little Ice Age seabed temperature amplitude of -0.7 K, suggesting a moderated climate impact on regional ocean temperatures. Nearshore boreholes where permafrost is aggrading owing to glacioisostatic emergence are excluded; we demonstrate that traditional inversion codes without latent heat of phase change predict the magnitude of the emergence signal but a timing far too recent.

  7. Evaluation and post-treatment of reanalysis precipitation series over Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mailhot, A.; Aubin, P.; Khedhaouiria, D.; Talbot, G.

    2015-12-01

    Assessing the climate of Canadian Arctic region is challenging since few meteorological records are available. Interpolated gridded datasets are also of limited use because network density was historically small and resulting values strongly depend on the interpolation method. Reanalysis therefore represent an interesting alternative. The objective of this study was to analyze the performance of reanalysis to represent the precipitation for Canada and especially for the Canadian Arctic. Three reanalysis were considered: ERA-Interim, MERRA and CFSR. Annual and monthly precipitations series from these reanalysis were compared to corresponding series from record stations (approximately 1 500 stations across Canada with a few hundreds stations in Northern Canada). Reanalysis grid-box closest to a given station was considered for the comparison. Mean Square Errors (MSE), bias, Pearson correlation coefficient (PCC) and ratio of variances between precipitation series from each pair station/reanalysis were estimated. These indicators have been used in order to assess the performance of reanalysis to reproduce the sequence of annual and monthly precipitation series. Results shown that, globally, ERA-Interim led to the smallest PCC, followed by MERRA and CFSR for annual precipitation series. All three reanalysis displayed large biases. A simple post-treatment method was then applied to the reanalysis series. It was first applied at local scale considering each pair of station/reanalysis. Improvement in MSE and PCC values using post-treated series were significant. In order to be able to use the reanalysis at gird-boxes where no station is available, a regional version of this post-treatment was implemented. This regional version consisted in the estimation of optimal mean regional values of post-treated parameters. Assessment of the performance of this regional post-treatment method was made using cross-validation.

  8. Extreme low sea ice years in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago: 1998 versus 2007

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howell, Stephen E. L.; Tivy, Adrienne; Agnew, Tom; Markus, Thorsten; Derksen, Chris

    2010-10-01

    Extreme sea ice minima were observed within the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA) during 1998 and 2007. The September average sea ice area was 2.90 and 2.65 standardized anomalies below the historical 1968-1996 climatology for 1998 and 2007, respectively. October sea ice area for 1998 was a staggering 4.45 standardized anomalies below the historical 1968-1996 climatology and 2007 was lower by 3.36 standardized anomalies. We examine the role of thermodynamic and dynamic forcing on CAA sea ice that was responsible for its extreme loss in 1998 and 2007. Thermodynamic forcing on the sea ice was concentrated over 1 month in 2007 facilitating rapid melt, contrasted against a long melt season in 1998. This variation was attributed to anomalously warm air temperatures in June, September, and October for 1998 compared to anomalously warm temperatures in July for 2007. Sea ice dynamics contributed to the 1998 minimum by inhibiting replenishment from the Arctic Ocean but actually facilitated replenishment in 2007 thereby preventing record low conditions. Replenishment was driven by dissimilarities in sea level pressure patterns over the CAA during these extreme years. Evidence for preconditioned thinning was apparent leading up to 2007 but not strongly apparent for 1998. Remarkably, at the onset of 1998 melt season, multi-year ice area within the CAA was 11% more than the historical climatology and 48% more than at the start of the 2007 melt season yet an extreme minima was still reached.

  9. Projected polar bear sea ice habitat in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen G Hamilton

    Full Text Available Sea ice across the Arctic is declining and altering physical characteristics of marine ecosystems. Polar bears (Ursus maritimus have been identified as vulnerable to changes in sea ice conditions. We use sea ice projections for the Canadian Arctic Archipelago from 2006 - 2100 to gain insight into the conservation challenges for polar bears with respect to habitat loss using metrics developed from polar bear energetics modeling.Shifts away from multiyear ice to annual ice cover throughout the region, as well as lengthening ice-free periods, may become critical for polar bears before the end of the 21st century with projected warming. Each polar bear population in the Archipelago may undergo 2-5 months of ice-free conditions, where no such conditions exist presently. We identify spatially and temporally explicit ice-free periods that extend beyond what polar bears require for nutritional and reproductive demands.Under business-as-usual climate projections, polar bears may face starvation and reproductive failure across the entire Archipelago by the year 2100.

  10. Landfast ice thickness in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago from observations and models

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howell, Stephen E. L.; Laliberté, Frédéric; Kwok, Ron; Derksen, Chris; King, Joshua

    2016-07-01

    Observed and modelled landfast ice thickness variability and trends spanning more than 5 decades within the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA) are summarized. The observed sites (Cambridge Bay, Resolute, Eureka and Alert) represent some of the Arctic's longest records of landfast ice thickness. Observed end-of-winter (maximum) trends of landfast ice thickness (1957-2014) were statistically significant at Cambridge Bay (-4.31 ± 1.4 cm decade-1), Eureka (-4.65 ± 1.7 cm decade-1) and Alert (-4.44 ± 1.6 cm -1) but not at Resolute. Over the 50+-year record, the ice thinned by ˜ 0.24-0.26 m at Cambridge Bay, Eureka and Alert with essentially negligible change at Resolute. Although statistically significant warming in spring and fall was present at all sites, only low correlations between temperature and maximum ice thickness were present; snow depth was found to be more strongly associated with the negative ice thickness trends. Comparison with multi-model simulations from Coupled Model Intercomparison project phase 5 (CMIP5), Ocean Reanalysis Intercomparison (ORA-IP) and Pan-Arctic Ice-Ocean Modeling and Assimilation System (PIOMAS) show that although a subset of current generation models have a "reasonable" climatological representation of landfast ice thickness and distribution within the CAA, trends are unrealistic and far exceed observations by up to 2 orders of magnitude. ORA-IP models were found to have positive correlations between temperature and ice thickness over the CAA, a feature that is inconsistent with both observations and coupled models from CMIP5.

  11. Measurements of the dissolved inorganic carbon system and associated biogeochemical parameters in the Canadian Arctic, 1974–2009

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. E. Giesbrecht

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available We have assembled and conducted primary quality control on previously publically-unavailable water column measurements of the dissolved inorganic carbon system and associated biogeochemical parameters (oxygen, nutrients, etc. made on 25 cruises in the subarctic and Arctic regions dating from as far back as 1974. The measurements are primarily from the western side of the Canadian Arctic, but also include data ranging from the North Pacific to the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The data were subjected to primary quality control (QC to identify outliers and obvious errors. This dataset incorporates over four thousand individual measurements of total inorganic carbon (TIC, alkalinity, and pH from the Canadian Arctic over a period of more than 30 yr and provides an opportunity to increase our understanding of temporal changes in the inorganic carbon system in northern waters and the Arctic Ocean. The dataset is available for download on the CDIAC website: http://cdiac.ornl.gov/ftp/oceans/IOS_Arctic_Database/ (doi:10.3334/CDIAC/OTG.IOS_ARCT_CARBN.

  12. Effect of Terrain Characteristics on Soil Organic Carbon and Total Nitrogen Stocks in Soils of Herschel Island, Western Canadian Arctic

    OpenAIRE

    Obu, Jaroslav; Lantuit, Hugues; Myers-Smith, Isla; Heim, Birgit; Wolter, Juliane; Fritz, Michael

    2015-01-01

    Permafrost landscapes experience different disturbances and store large amounts of organic matter, which may become a source of greenhouse gases upon permafrost degradation. We analysed the influence of terrain and geomorphic disturbances (e.g. soil creep, active-layer detachment, gullying, thaw slumping, accumulation of fluvial deposits) on soil organic carbon (SOC) and total nitrogen (TN) storage using 11 permafrost cores from Herschel Island, western Canadian Arctic. Our results indicate a...

  13. Summer foraging behaviour of shallow-diving seabirds and distribution of their prey, Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida, in the Canadian Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jordan K. Matley

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Productive areas in the Canadian Arctic seasonally provide top predators with accessible and often predictable sources of energy. Arctic cod (Boreogadus saida aggregate in shallow bays during the summer and are exploited by seabirds and marine mammals. Information concerning how prey is presented to predatory seabirds, and the cues seabirds use to optimize foraging potential, is limited. Hydroacoustic surveys were completed in Allen Bay, Nunavut, to determine the presence, density, abundance, and depth of Arctic cod schools in relation to shallow-diving seabirds. Schools were also documented using standardized protocols to examine the influence of environmental variables, such as wind, ice, tidal states and seabird behaviour. The presence of schools was a significant predictor of the distribution of northern fulmars (Fulmarus glacialis but not black-legged kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla. Glaucous gulls (Larus hyperboreus associated with northern fulmars are likely optimizing chances of stealing Arctic cod. The density, size and depth of schools did not significantly affect the distribution of the seabirds. We speculate that Arctic cod from demersal schools separate to feed at the surface in satellite schools (groups of dispersed fish, thus reducing competition but increasing the risk of predation.

  14. Biological and physical processes influencing sea ice, under-ice algae, and dimethylsulfoniopropionate during spring in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galindo, V.; Levasseur, M.; Mundy, C. J.; Gosselin, M.; Tremblay, J.-É.; Scarratt, M.; Gratton, Y.; Papakiriakou, T.; Poulin, M.; Lizotte, M.

    2014-06-01

    This study presents temporal variations in concentrations of chlorophyll a (Chl a), particulate and dissolved dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSPp and DMSPd) in the sea ice and underlying water column in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago during the spring of 2010 and 2011. During both years, bottom ice Chl a, DMSPp and DMSPd concentrations were high (up to 1328 µg L-1, 15,082 nmol L-1, and 6110 nmol L-1, respectively) in May and decreased thereafter. The release of bottom ice algae and DMSPp in the water column was gradual in 2010 and rapid (8 days) in 2011. Bottom brine drainage during the presnowmelt period in 2010 and a rapid loss of the snow cover in 2011 coinciding with rain events explain most of the difference between the 2 years. During both years, less than 13% of the DMSPd lost from the ice was detected in the water column, suggesting a rapid microbial consumption. An under-ice diatom bloom developed in both years. In 2010, the bloom was dominated by centric diatoms while in 2011 pennates dominated, likely reflecting seeding by ice algae following the faster snowmelt progression induced by rainfall events in 2011. Both under-ice blooms were associated with high DMSPp concentrations (up to 185 nmol L-1), but pennate diatoms showed DMSPp/Chl a ratios twice higher than centrics. These results highlight the key role of snowmelt and precipitation on the temporal pattern of ice-DMSP release to the water column and on the timing, taxonomic composition, and DMSP content of phytoplankton under-ice blooms in the Arctic.

  15. Microbes residing in young organic rich Alaskan soils contain older carbon than those residing in old mineral high Arctic soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ziolkowski, L. A.; Slater, G. F.; Onstott, T. C.; Whyte, L.; Townsend-Small, A.

    2013-12-01

    Arctic soils range from very organic rich to low carbon and mineral-dominated soils. At present, we do not yet fully understand if all carbon in the Arctic is equally vulnerable to mineralization in a warmer climate. Many studies have demonstrated that ancient carbon is respired when permafrost has thawed, yet our understanding of the active layer and permafrost carbon dynamics is still emerging. In an effort to remedy this disconnect between our knowledge of surface fluxes and below ground processes, we used radiocarbon to examine the microbial carbon dynamics in soil cores from organic rich soils near Barrow, Alaska and mineral soils from the Canadian high Arctic. Specifically, we compared the microbial community using lipid biomarkers, the inputs of carbon using n-alkanes and measured the 14C of both the bulk organic carbon and of the microbial lipids. In theory, the microbial lipids (phospholipid fatty acids, PLFA) represent the viable microbial community, as these lipids are hydrolyzed quickly after cell death. Variations in the PLFA distributions suggested that different microbial communities inhabit organic rich Alaskan soils and those of the Canadian high Arctic. When the PLFA concentrations were converted to cellular concentration, they were within the same order of magnitude (1 to 5 x 108 cells/g dry soil) with slightly higher cell concentrations in the organic rich Alaskan soils. When these cellular concentrations were normalized to the organic carbon content, the Canadian high Arctic soils contained a greater proportion of microbes. Although bulk organic carbon 14C of Alaskan soils indicated more recent carbon inputs into the soil than the Canadian high Arctic soils, the 14C of the PLFA revealed the opposite. For corresponding depth horizons, microbes in Alaskan soils were consuming carbon 1000 to 1500 years older than those in the Canadian high Arctic. Differences between the 14C content of bulk organic carbon and the microbial lipids were much smaller

  16. Vegetation, plant biomass, and net primary productivity patterns in the Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gould, W. A.; Raynolds, M.; Walker, D. A.

    2003-01-01

    We have developed maps of dominant vegetation types, plant functional types, percent vegetation cover, aboveground plant biomass, and above and belowground annual net primary productivity for Canada north of the northern limit of trees. The area mapped covers 2.5 million km2 including glaciers. Ice-free land covers 2.3 million km2 and represents 42% of all ice-free land in the Circumpolar Arctic. The maps combine information on climate, soils, geology, hydrology, remotely sensed vegetation classifications, previous vegetation studies, and regional expertise to define polygons drawn using photo-interpretation of a 1:4,000,000 scale advanced very high resolution radiometer (AVHRR) color infrared image basemap. Polygons are linked to vegetation description, associated properties, and descriptive literature through a series of lookup tables in a graphic information systems (GIS) database developed as a component of the Circumpolar Arctic Vegetation Map (CAVM) project. Polygons are classified into 20 landcover types including 17 vegetation types. Half of the region is sparsely vegetated (<50% vegetation cover), primarily in the High Arctic (bioclimatic subzones A-C). Whereas most (86%) of the estimated aboveground plant biomass (1.5 × 1015 g) and 87% of the estimated above and belowground annual net primary productivity (2.28 × 1014 g yr-1) are concentrated in the Low Arctic (subzones D and E). The maps present more explicit spatial patterns of vegetation and ecosystem attributes than have been previously available, the GIS database is useful in summarizing ecosystem properties and can be easily updated and integrated into circumpolar mapping efforts, and the derived estimates fall within the range of current published estimates.

  17. Isotopic analyses (18O, 13C, 14C) of two meromictic lakes in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meromictic Lakes Garrow and Sophia in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago were sampled to establish the origin and age of their waters by isotopic studies. The sigma/sub SMOW/18O values reflect the permanent stratification of the waters in both lakes. The mixolimnia contain waters with an isotopic signal between -13.16 and -2.198%, coherent with the values of precipitation in these high latitudes. The short residence time of the water in this layer makes it possible to record episodic variations of the freshwater inputs to the lakes. In the chemoclines, the sigma18O values increase to -10% concomitantly with a rise in chloride content to 42 g liter-1. This corresponds to a conservative mixing of surficial and deep waters. In the monimolimnia, hypersaline waters from brine production during permafrost growth in the watershed, according to a Rayleigh process. The brines drained toward the deepest part of each lake, after postglacial uplift, and became isolated. 14C dating of total inorganic carbon in the Lake Garrow monimolimnion gave an age of 2580 +/- 260 years B.P. In Lake Sophia, the deep waters exhibit recent 14C activity (121.4% modern carbon) that suggests recent infiltration of seawater into the lake basin

  18. Isotopic analyses (18O, 13C, 14C) of two meromictic lakes in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Meromictic Lakes Garrow and Sophia in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago were sampled to establish the origin and age of their water by isotopic studies. 18O values reflect the permanent stratification of the water in both lakes. The mixolimnia contain waters with an isotopic signal between -13.16 and -21.98%, coherent with the values for precipitation in these high latitudes. In the chemoclines, the delta18O values increase to -10% concomitantly with a rise in chloride content to 42 g.liter-1. In the monimolimnia, hypersaline waters (up to 2.5 times the salinity of seawater) show negative delta18O values (ca. -.08%). These waters result from brine production during permafrost growth in the watershed, according to a Rayleigh process. 14C dating of total inorganic carbon in the Lake Garrow monimolimnion gave an age of 2580 +/- 260 years BP. In Lake Sophia, the deep waters exhibit recent 14C activity that suggests recent infiltration of seawater into the lake basin

  19. The role of seasonal migration in the near-total loss of caribou on south-central Canadian Arctic Islands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frank L. Miller

    2007-04-01

    estimated 5097 1+ yr-old caribou in 1980 to fewer than 100 1+ yr-old caribou in 1995 (Gunn & Decker, 1984; Miller, 1997; Gunn & Dragon, 1998; Gunn et al., 2006. This loss of caribou on those islands amounts to a near-total loss of a genetically distinctive group of Arctic-island caribou (e.g., Zittlau, 2004. In contrast, the estimated number of caribou in the geographic population on Boothia Peninsula appeared to increase by 1.4-fold from 4831 to 6658 1+ yr-old caribou between 1985 and 1995, although annual harvesting pressure was heavy. It was biologically impossible for the Boothia Peninsula geographic population at its 1985 estimated size to have persisted until 1995, let alone to have increased, under the estimated average annual harvest regime of 1100 1+ yr-old caribou • yr-1. There is no evidence that the Boothia Peninsula population was underestimated in 1985. It would have required a population in 1985 at least twice as great as the calculated estimate to sustain the estimated annual harvest between 1985 and 1995. An underestimate of such magnitude is too great to be probable. In our examination of the survey results, we could find no reason to question that the calculated population estimates were not reasonable approximations. The fixed-wing aerial surveys in 1980 (Gunn & Decker, 1984, 1985 (Gunn & Ashevak, 1990, and 1995 (Gunn & Dragon, 1998 were highly comparable, well designed and executed, using standard procedures for a fixed-width, strip-transect, systematic aerial survey of caribou. One of the two observers was the same experienced survey biologist in all 3 years, the second observer in 1980 was an experienced survey biologist and in 1985 and 1995 was an experienced Inuit hunter familiar with the area, and the pilot was the same on all surveys and had flown many systematic surveys of caribou on the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and mainland Canada. Helicopter searches of known caribou ranges on Prince of Wales, Russell, and Somerset islands that were

  20. Radiocesium in Canadian Arctic Beluga and Caribou Before and After the Fukushima Accident of 2011

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stocki, Trevor J.; Pellerin, Eric; Bergman, Lauren; Mercier, Jean-Francois; Genovesi, Linda; Cooke, Michael; Todd, Bonnie; Sandles, Diane; Whyte, Jeff [Radiation Protection Bureau, Health Canada, AL6302D, 775 Brookfield Road, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K1A 0K9 (Canada); Gamberg, Mary [Gamberg Consulting, Whitehorse, Yukon (Canada); Loseto, Lisa [Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Winnipeg, Manitoba (Canada); Wang, X. [Environment Canada, Burlington Ontario (Canada)

    2014-07-01

    Following the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident in March 2011, northern Canadians expressed concerns about the levels of radioactive contaminants in important traditional foods. Therefore, a study has been conducted to measure the levels of radionuclides in Arctic caribou and beluga whales. The main radionuclide of concern is cesium-137, which has a half-life of 30 years and is chemically similar to potassium, thereby easily accumulating in plants and animals. Cesium-137 was released into the atmosphere during nuclear weapons tests in the 1950's-60's and during nuclear accidents, such as Chernobyl. Previous studies have been made on the cesium-137 levels in Canadian caribou herds from 1958 to 2000, allowing researchers to determine the amount of cesium-137 in caribou specifically attributable to atmospheric weapons testing and the Chernobyl accident. Samples of lichens, mushrooms, caribou and beluga whales taken before and after the Fukushima accident were freeze dried, homogenized, and measured using gamma ray spectroscopy to identify the radionuclides present and determine the radioactivity concentration in the samples. To determine the efficiency of the detectors for the different sized samples, physical calibration standards were used and virtual simulations were also performed. A comparison of the caribou samples from before and after the accident has indicated no increase in radioactivity as a result of the Fukushima accident. Results are consistent with pre-Fukushima levels for these caribou. No Cs-137 was found in the pre-Fukushima beluga whale samples, even if all the measurements were combined into one spectrum. In the individual post-Fukushima beluga whale samples, Cs-137 was also not found. However, when the post-Fukushima beluga whale measurements were combined, an insignificant amount of radioactive Cs-137 was found. The amount of this Cs-137 was about 200 times smaller than the natural radioactive potassium in the samples. Most likely the

  1. Radiocesium in Canadian Arctic Beluga and Caribou Before and After the Fukushima Accident of 2011

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Following the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident in March 2011, northern Canadians expressed concerns about the levels of radioactive contaminants in important traditional foods. Therefore, a study has been conducted to measure the levels of radionuclides in Arctic caribou and beluga whales. The main radionuclide of concern is cesium-137, which has a half-life of 30 years and is chemically similar to potassium, thereby easily accumulating in plants and animals. Cesium-137 was released into the atmosphere during nuclear weapons tests in the 1950's-60's and during nuclear accidents, such as Chernobyl. Previous studies have been made on the cesium-137 levels in Canadian caribou herds from 1958 to 2000, allowing researchers to determine the amount of cesium-137 in caribou specifically attributable to atmospheric weapons testing and the Chernobyl accident. Samples of lichens, mushrooms, caribou and beluga whales taken before and after the Fukushima accident were freeze dried, homogenized, and measured using gamma ray spectroscopy to identify the radionuclides present and determine the radioactivity concentration in the samples. To determine the efficiency of the detectors for the different sized samples, physical calibration standards were used and virtual simulations were also performed. A comparison of the caribou samples from before and after the accident has indicated no increase in radioactivity as a result of the Fukushima accident. Results are consistent with pre-Fukushima levels for these caribou. No Cs-137 was found in the pre-Fukushima beluga whale samples, even if all the measurements were combined into one spectrum. In the individual post-Fukushima beluga whale samples, Cs-137 was also not found. However, when the post-Fukushima beluga whale measurements were combined, an insignificant amount of radioactive Cs-137 was found. The amount of this Cs-137 was about 200 times smaller than the natural radioactive potassium in the samples. Most likely the Cs-137

  2. Fast carnivores and slow herbivores: differential foraging strategies among grizzly bears in the Canadian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Mark A; Derocher, Andrew E; Hobson, Keith A; Branigan, Marsha; Nagy, John A

    2011-04-01

    Categorizing animal populations by diet can mask important intrapopulation variation, which is crucial to understanding a species' trophic niche width. To test hypotheses related to intrapopulation variation in foraging or the presence of diet specialization, we conducted stable isotope analysis (δ(13)C, δ(15)N) on hair and claw samples from 51 grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) collected from 2003 to 2006 in the Mackenzie Delta region of the Canadian Arctic. We examined within-population differences in the foraging patterns of males and females and the relationship between trophic position (derived from δ(15)N measurements) and individual movement. The range of δ(15)N values in hair and claw (2.0-11.0‰) suggested a wide niche width and cluster analyses indicated the presence of three foraging groups within the population, ranging from near-complete herbivory to near-complete carnivory. We found no linear relationship between home range size and trophic position when the data were continuous or when grouped by foraging behavior. However, the movement rate of females increased linearly with trophic position. We used multisource dual-isotope mixing models to determine the relative contributions of seven prey sources within each foraging group for both males and females. The mean bear dietary endpoint across all foraging groups for each sex fell toward the center of the mixing polygon, which suggested relatively well-mixed diets. The primary dietary difference across foraging groups was the proportional contribution of herbaceous foods, which decreased for both males and females from 42-76 to 0-27% and 62-81 to 0-44%, respectively. Grizzlies of the Mackenzie Delta live in extremely harsh conditions and identifying within-population diet specialization has improved our understanding of varying habitat requirements within the population.

  3. Recent extreme light sea ice years in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago: 2011 and 2012 eclipse 1998 and 2007

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. E. L. Howell

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Record low mean September sea ice area in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA was observed in 2011 (146 × 103 km2, a level that was nearly exceeded in 2012 (150 × 103 km2. These values eclipsed previous September records set in 1998 (200 × 103 km2 and 2007 (220 × 103 km2 and are ∼60% lower than the 1981–2010 mean September climatology. In this study, the driving processes contributing to the extreme light years of 2011 and 2012 were investigated, compared to previous extreme minima of 1998 and 2007, and contrasted against historic summer seasons with above average September ice area. The 2011 minimum was driven by positive July surface air temperature (SAT anomalies that facilitated rapid melt, coupled with atmospheric circulation in July and August that restricted multi-year ice (MYI inflow from the Arctic Ocean into the CAA. The 2012 minimum was also driven by positive July SAT anomalies (with coincident rapid melt but further ice decline was temporarily mitigated by atmospheric circulation in August and September which drove Arctic Ocean MYI inflow into the CAA. Atmospheric circulation was comparable between 2011 and 1998 (impeding Arctic Ocean MYI inflow and 2012 and 2007 (inducing Arctic Ocean MYI inflow. However, evidence of both preconditioned thinner Arctic Ocean MYI flowing into CAA and maximum landfast first-year ice (FYI thickness within the CAA was more apparent leading up to 2011 and 2012 than 1998 and 2007. The rapid melt process in 2011 and 2012 was more intense than observed in 1998 and 2007 because of the thinner ice cover being more susceptible to positive SAT forcing. The thinner sea ice cover within the CAA in recent years has also helped counteract the processes that facilitate extreme heavy ice years. The recent extreme light years within the CAA are associated with a longer navigation season within the Northwest Passage.

  4. Assessing determinants of maternal blood concentrations for persistent organic pollutants and metals in the eastern and western Canadian Arctic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Aboriginal peoples in the Canadian Arctic are exposed to persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and metals mainly through their consumption of a traditional diet of wildlife items. Recent studies indicate that many human chemical levels have decreased in the north, likely due to a combination of reduced global chemical emissions, dietary shifts, and risk mitigation efforts by local health authorities. Body burdens for chemicals in mothers can be further offset by breastfeeding, parity, and other maternal characteristics. We have assessed the impact of several dietary and maternal covariates following a decade of awareness of the contaminant issue in northern Canada, by performing multiple stepwise linear regression analyses from blood concentrations and demographic variables for 176 mothers recruited from Nunavut and the Northwest Territories during the period 2005–2007. A significant aboriginal group effect was observed for the modeled chemicals, except for lead and cadmium, after adjusting for covariates. Further, blood concentrations for POPs and metals were significantly associated with at least one covariate of older age, fewer months spent breastfeeding, more frequent eating of traditional foods, or smoking during pregnancy. Cadmium had the highest explained variance (72.5%) from just two significant covariates (current smoking status and parity). Although Inuit participants from the Northwest Territories consumed more traditional foods in general, Inuit participants from coastal communities in Nunavut continued to demonstrate higher adjusted blood concentrations for POPs and metals examined here. While this is due in part to a higher prevalence of marine mammals in the eastern Arctic diet, it is possible that other aboriginal group effects unrelated to diet may also contribute to elevated chemical body burdens in Canadian Arctic populations. - Highlights: • In 2005–07, younger age was related to lower levels of chemicals in northern Canada. • Eastern

  5. Assessing determinants of maternal blood concentrations for persistent organic pollutants and metals in the eastern and western Canadian Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Curren, Meredith S., E-mail: meredith.curren@hc-sc.gc.ca [Chemicals Surveillance Bureau, Healthy Environments and Consumer Safety Branch, Health Canada, 269 Laurier Avenue West, Ottawa, Ontario (Canada); Liang, Chun Lei, E-mail: chun.lei.liang@hc-sc.gc.ca [Environmental Health Science and Research Bureau, Healthy Environments and Consumer Safety Branch, Health Canada, 50 Columbine Driveway, Tunney' s Pasture, Ottawa, Ontario (Canada); Davis, Karelyn, E-mail: karelyn.davis@hc-sc.gc.ca [Environmental Health Science and Research Bureau, Healthy Environments and Consumer Safety Branch, Health Canada, 50 Columbine Driveway, Tunney' s Pasture, Ottawa, Ontario (Canada); Kandola, Kami, E-mail: Kami_Kandola@gov.nt.ca [Government of the Northwest Territories, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories (Canada); Brewster, Janet, E-mail: jbrewster@gov.nu.ca [Government of Nunavut, Iqaluit, Nunavut (Canada); Potyrala, Mary, E-mail: mary_potyrala@yahoo.ca [Government of Nunavut, Iqaluit, Nunavut (Canada); Chan, Hing Man, E-mail: laurie.chan@uottawa.ca [Center for Advanced Research in Environmental Genomics, University of Ottawa, 20 Marie-Curie, Ottawa, Ontario (Canada)

    2015-09-15

    Aboriginal peoples in the Canadian Arctic are exposed to persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and metals mainly through their consumption of a traditional diet of wildlife items. Recent studies indicate that many human chemical levels have decreased in the north, likely due to a combination of reduced global chemical emissions, dietary shifts, and risk mitigation efforts by local health authorities. Body burdens for chemicals in mothers can be further offset by breastfeeding, parity, and other maternal characteristics. We have assessed the impact of several dietary and maternal covariates following a decade of awareness of the contaminant issue in northern Canada, by performing multiple stepwise linear regression analyses from blood concentrations and demographic variables for 176 mothers recruited from Nunavut and the Northwest Territories during the period 2005–2007. A significant aboriginal group effect was observed for the modeled chemicals, except for lead and cadmium, after adjusting for covariates. Further, blood concentrations for POPs and metals were significantly associated with at least one covariate of older age, fewer months spent breastfeeding, more frequent eating of traditional foods, or smoking during pregnancy. Cadmium had the highest explained variance (72.5%) from just two significant covariates (current smoking status and parity). Although Inuit participants from the Northwest Territories consumed more traditional foods in general, Inuit participants from coastal communities in Nunavut continued to demonstrate higher adjusted blood concentrations for POPs and metals examined here. While this is due in part to a higher prevalence of marine mammals in the eastern Arctic diet, it is possible that other aboriginal group effects unrelated to diet may also contribute to elevated chemical body burdens in Canadian Arctic populations. - Highlights: • In 2005–07, younger age was related to lower levels of chemicals in northern Canada. • Eastern

  6. Production and Cycling of Methylmercury in High Arctic Wetland Ponds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehnherr, I.; St. Louis, V. L.

    2010-12-01

    Some species of freshwater fish in the Canadian high Arctic contain levels of methylmercury (MeHg) that pose health risks to the northern Inuit peoples that harvest these species as a traditional food source. In temperate regions, wetlands are known natural sites of MeHg production and hence significant MeHg sources to downstream ecosystems. However, the importance of wetlands to Hg methylation in the Arctic is unclear and the sources of MeHg to arctic freshwater ecosystems are still largely unidentified. Our research is demonstrating that some shallow and warm wetland ponds on the Arctic landscape contain high MeHg concentrations compared to nearby deep and cold lakes. We used a mass-balance approach to measure the net in-pond production of MeHg in two warm wetland ponds (Ponds 1 and 2) near Lake Hazen, Ellesmere Island, Nunavut (81° N latitude). We quantified external inputs and outputs of MeHg to and from the ponds, as well as the accumulation of MeHg in the water column during the summers of 2005 and 2008. Any changes in water column MeHg concentrations that could not be accounted for by external inputs or sinks were attributed to in-pond production. The principal external input and sink of MeHg was, respectively, wet atmospheric deposition and water-column MeHg photodemethylation. For 2005, we estimate that the net flux of MeHg from sediments into the water column was 0.015 μg m-2 d-1 in Pond 1 and 0.0016 μg m-2 d-1 in Pond 2. Compared to sediment-water MeHg fluxes measured in Alaskan tundra lakes (0.0015-0.0045 μg m-2 d-1), Pond 1 sediments are a greater source of MeHg while Pond 2 is similar to the Alaskan lakes. Furthermore, the accumulation of MeHg in the water column of Pond 1 (0.0061 μg m-2 d-1) was similar to the net yield of MeHg from temperate boreal wetlands (0.0005-0.006 μg m-2 d-1), demonstrating that these Arctic wetlands are important sites of MeHg production. In addition, we used mercury stable-isotope tracers to quantify methylation and

  7. Climate change impacts on continental weathering through the Middle Jurassic to Lower Cretaceous of Sverdrup Basin, Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galloway, Jennifer; Grasby, Stephen; Swindles, Graeme; Dewing, Keith

    2014-05-01

    Jurassic to Cretaceous strata of Sverdrup Basin, Canadian Arctic Archipelago, contain marine and non-marine successions that can be studied to reconstruct ancient paleoclimates and paleoenvironments that are poorly understood in high-latitude regions. We use element geochemistry integrated with palynology to study a continuous Aalenian to Albian-aged succession preserved in the Hoodoo Dome H-37 oil and gas well located on southern Ellef Ringnes Island near the centre of Sverdrup Basin. Cluster analysis (stratigraphically constrained incremental sum of squares; CONISS) is used to delineate four geochemical zones that are broadly coeval with major changes in palyno-assemblages interpreted to reflect changes in regional paleoclimate. Zone 1 (late Aalenian to Bathonian) is characterized by palynomorphs associated with humid and warm climate conditions. The chemical alteration index (CAI) is high in this interval, expected under this a humid and warm climate. A transition to a seasonally arid and warm climate occurred in the Bathonian and persisted until the Kimmeridgian or Valanginian (Zone 2). This interval is characterized by decreased chemical weathering, indicated by a drop in CAI. The onset of Zone 3 (Kimmeridgian or Valanginian to late Barremian or early Aptian) occurs during a transition to humid and cool climate conditions and is associated with a period of regional uplift and rifting. Zone 3 is marked by a substantial and progressive drop in CAI, indicating a transition from a weathering to transport-dominated system, possibly associated with landscape destabilization. Reduced tectonic activity in Zone 4 (early Aptian to early or mid Albian) shows a return to active chemical weathering, possibly associated with landscape stabilization, suggested by a continued increase in pollen from upland coniferous taxa. The geochemical and palynological records of Middle Jurassic to Lower Cretaceous strata of the Hoodoo Dome H-37 oil and gas well show close correlation

  8. Microarray and Real-Time PCR Analyses of the Responses of High-Arctic Soil Bacteria to Hydrocarbon Pollution and Bioremediation Treatments▿

    OpenAIRE

    Yergeau, Etienne; Arbour, Mélanie; Brousseau, Roland; Juck, David; Lawrence, John R.; Masson, Luke; Whyte, Lyle G; Greer, Charles W.

    2009-01-01

    High-Arctic soils have low nutrient availability, low moisture content, and very low temperatures and, as such, they pose a particular problem in terms of hydrocarbon bioremediation. An in-depth knowledge of the microbiology involved in this process is likely to be crucial to understand and optimize the factors most influencing bioremediation. Here, we compared two distinct large-scale field bioremediation experiments, located at the Canadian high-Arctic stations of Alert (ex situ approach) a...

  9. Large-scale temperature and salinity changes in the upper Canadian Basin of the Arctic Ocean at a time of a drastic Arctic Oscillation inversion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourgain, P.; Gascard, J. C.; Shi, J.; Zhao, J.

    2013-04-01

    Between 2008 and 2010, the Arctic Oscillation index over Arctic regions shifted from positive values corresponding to more cyclonic conditions prevailing during the 4th International Polar Year (IPY) period (2007-2008) to extremely negative values corresponding to strong anticyclonic conditions in 2010. In this context, we investigated the recent large-scale evolution of the upper western Arctic Ocean, based on temperature and salinity summertime observations collected during icebreaker campaigns and from ice-tethered profilers (ITPs) drifting across the region in 2008 and 2010. Particularly, we focused on (1) the freshwater content which was extensively studied during previous years, (2) the near-surface temperature maximum due to incoming solar radiation, and (3) the water masses advected from the Pacific Ocean into the Arctic Ocean. The observations revealed a freshwater content change in the Canadian Basin during this time period. South of 80° N, the freshwater content increased, while north of 80° N, less freshening occurred in 2010 compared to 2008. This was more likely due to the strong anticyclonicity characteristic of a low AO index mode that enhanced both a wind-generated Ekman pumping in the Beaufort Gyre and a possible diversion of the Siberian River runoff toward the Eurasian Basin at the same time. The near-surface temperature maximum due to incoming solar radiation was almost 1 °C colder in the southern Canada Basin (south of 75° N) in 2010 compared to 2008, which contrasted with the positive trend observed during previous years. This was more likely due to higher summer sea ice concentration in 2010 compared to 2008 in that region, and surface albedo feedback reflecting more sun radiation back in space. The Pacific water (PaW) was also subjected to strong spatial and temporal variability between 2008 and 2010. In the Canada Basin, both summer and winter PaW signatures were stronger between 75° N and 80° N. This was more likely due to a strong

  10. Large-scale temperature and salinity changes in the upper Canadian Basin of the Arctic Ocean at a time of a drastic Arctic Oscillation inversion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Bourgain

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Between 2008 and 2010, the Arctic Oscillation index over Arctic regions shifted from positive values corresponding to more cyclonic conditions prevailing during the 4th International Polar Year (IPY period (2007–2008 to extremely negative values corresponding to strong anticyclonic conditions in 2010. In this context, we investigated the recent large-scale evolution of the upper western Arctic Ocean, based on temperature and salinity summertime observations collected during icebreaker campaigns and from ice-tethered profilers (ITPs drifting across the region in 2008 and 2010. Particularly, we focused on (1 the freshwater content which was extensively studied during previous years, (2 the near-surface temperature maximum due to incoming solar radiation, and (3 the water masses advected from the Pacific Ocean into the Arctic Ocean. The observations revealed a freshwater content change in the Canadian Basin during this time period. South of 80° N, the freshwater content increased, while north of 80° N, less freshening occurred in 2010 compared to 2008. This was more likely due to the strong anticyclonicity characteristic of a low AO index mode that enhanced both a wind-generated Ekman pumping in the Beaufort Gyre and a possible diversion of the Siberian River runoff toward the Eurasian Basin at the same time. The near-surface temperature maximum due to incoming solar radiation was almost 1 °C colder in the southern Canada Basin (south of 75° N in 2010 compared to 2008, which contrasted with the positive trend observed during previous years. This was more likely due to higher summer sea ice concentration in 2010 compared to 2008 in that region, and surface albedo feedback reflecting more sun radiation back in space. The Pacific water (PaW was also subjected to strong spatial and temporal variability between 2008 and 2010. In the Canada Basin, both summer and winter PaW signatures were stronger between 75° N and 80° N. This was more likely

  11. ArcticDEM; A Publically Available, High Resolution Elevation Model of the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morin, Paul; Porter, Claire; Cloutier, Michael; Howat, Ian; Noh, Myoung-Jong; Willis, Michael; Bates, Brian; Willamson, Cathleen; Peterman, Kennith

    2016-04-01

    A Digital Elevation Model (DEM) of the Arctic is needed for a large number of reasons, including: measuring and understanding rapid, ongoing changes to the Arctic landscape resulting from climate change and human use and mitigation and adaptation planning for Arctic communities. The topography of the Arctic is more poorly mapped than most other regions of Earth due to logistical costs and the limits of satellite missions with low-latitude inclinations. A convergence of civilian, high-quality sub-meter stereo imagery; petascale computing and open source photogrammetry software has made it possible to produce a complete, very high resolution (2 to 8-meter posting), elevation model of the Arctic. A partnership between the US National Geospatial-intelligence Agency and a team led by the US National Science Foundation funded Polar Geospatial Center is using stereo imagery from DigitalGlobe's Worldview-1, 2 and 3 satellites and the Ohio State University's Surface Extraction with TIN-based Search-space Minimization (SETSM) software running on the University of Illinois's Blue Water supercomputer to address this challenge. The final product will be a seemless, 2-m posting digital surface model mosaic of the entire Arctic above 60 North including all of Alaska, Greenland and Kamchatka. We will also make available the more than 300,000 individual time-stamped DSM strip pairs that were used to assemble the mosaic. The Arctic DEM will have a vertical precision of better than 0.5m and can be used to examine changes in land surfaces such as those caused by permafrost degradation or the evolution of arctic rivers and floodplains. The data set can also be used to highlight changing geomorphology due to Earth surface mass transport processes occurring in active volcanic and glacial environments. When complete the ArcticDEM will catapult the Arctic from the worst to among the best mapped regions on Earth.

  12. Large-scale temperature and salinity changes in the upper Canadian basin of the Arctic Ocean at a time of a drastic Arctic Oscillation inversion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Bourgain

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Between 2008 and 2010, the Arctic Oscillation index over Arctic regions shifted from positive values corresponding to more cyclonic conditions prevailing during IPY period (2007–2008 to extremely negative values corresponding to strong anticyclonic conditions in 2010. In this context, we investigated the recent large scale evolution of the upper Western Arctic Ocean based on temperature and salinity summertime observations collected during icebreaker campaigns and from Ice-Tethered Platforms (ITP drifting across the region in 2008 and 2010. Particularly, we focused on (1 the freshwater content which was extensively studied during previous years, (2 the Near Surface Temperature Maximum due to incoming solar radiation and (3 the water masses advected from the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans into the deep Arctic Ocean.

    The observations revealed a freshwater content change in the Canadian basin during this time period. South of 80° N, the freshwater content increased, while north of 80° N, less freshening occurred in 2010 compared to 2008. This was more likely due to the strong anticyclonicity characteristic of a low AO index mode that enhanced both a wind-generated Ekman pumping in the Beaufort Gyre and a diversion of the Siberian rivers runoff toward the Eurasian basin at the same time.

    The Near Surface Temperature Maximum due to incoming solar radiation was almost 1 °C colder in the Southern Canada basin (south of 75° N in 2010 compared to 2008 which contrasted with the positive trend observed during previous years. This was more likely due to higher summer sea ice concentration in 2010 compared to 2008 in that region, and surface albedo feedback reflecting more sun radiation back in space.

    The Pacific waters were also subjected to strong spatial and temporal variability between 2008 and 2010. In the Canada basin, both Summer and Winter Pacific waters influence increased between 75° N and 80° N. This was more likely

  13. Effects of shrub expansion on the hydrology of the western Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsh, P.; Endrizzi, S.; Lantz, T. C.; Marsh, C.; Pomeroy, J. W.

    2011-12-01

    The expansion of tall (or upright) shrubs into tundra areas of the North American arctic has been documented in a few areas, and it has been suggested that this is occurring over a broad area of the arctic and will have an important impact on snow accumulation, surface energy balance, and runoff of these areas. However, there are still considerable unknowns about the details of these effects and our ability to predict future changes in hydrology. In order to help answer these questions, a detailed measurement program has been carried out at the Trail Valley Creek (TVC) research basin located approximately 50 km NE of Inuvik, NWT, Canada. This area is characterized by rolling upland tundra underlain by continuous permafrost, with a mix of tundra, shrub tundra, and forest patches. Field observations aimed at developing an improved understanding of the effect of a transition from tundra to shrub tundra has been carried out over the last 4 years. Observations at both shrub and tundra sites in the TVC basin include: meteorological observations at 3 stations; extensive end of winter snow surveys; eddy covariance observations; changes in LAI at a shrub site during the melt period; aerial photos and satellite images at frequent intervals over the melt season; winter observations of snow depth and soil temperature; aerial photo observations of changes in shrub cover; and high resolution LIDAR based measurements of elevation and vegetation height. In combination with these observations, the GEOtop hydrologic model was used to consider the interacting processes controlling snow accumulation and melt at shrub and tundra sites. Preliminary analysis demonstrates that the shrub cover has increased in the study basin over the last 32 years. At a shrub site, the shrubs were bent over and buried by snow during the winter, with increased snow depth at the shrub site compared to a tundra site. As a result, the soil temperature was higher at the shrub site both during the winter, and

  14. Model simulated volume fluxes through the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and Davis Strait: Linking monthly variations to forcing in different seasons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lu, Youyu; Higginson, Simon; Nudds, Shannon; Prinsenberg, Simon; Garric, Gilles

    2014-03-01

    The solution of a 10 year simulation of the Arctic Ocean, produced using a 6 km resolution coupled ocean and sea-ice model, is analyzed to understand the variability, control, and forcing mechanisms of the volume fluxes through the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA) and Davis Strait (DS). The analysis focuses on variability at monthly time scales. Analysis confirms the "control" of volume fluxes through the CAA, proposed in previous studies, by (1) variations of sea surface height (SSH) in the "upstream" regions and the relationship of this control to alongshore wind in the Beaufort Sea and (2) by SSH in the "downstream" region in Baffin Bay that may be related to wind stress in Baffin Bay and the northern Labrador Sea. The effectiveness of these control and forcing mechanisms vary for fluxes through different sections and for different seasons. Variation of the southward flux through DS is directly influenced by fluxes through Nares Strait (NS) and Barrow Strait (BS) in summer, fall, and winter. In spring, variations of the southward and northward fluxes through DS are closely related to each other and correspond to changes in the SSH along pathways of the Irminger Current, and the East and West Greenland Currents.

  15. Distribution and diet of larval and juvenile Arctic cod ( Boreogadus saida) in the shallow Canadian Beaufort Sea

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walkusz, Wojciech; Paulic, Joclyn E.; Williams, William J.; Kwasniewski, Slawomir; Papst, Michael H.

    2011-02-01

    The distribution and diet of larval and juvenile Arctic cod ( Boreogadus saida) were studied during summer 2005 in the coastal Canadian Beaufort Sea. A total of 275 individuals were captured and the highest abundance was observed at station depths of 20-30 m. This corresponds well with the location of the frontal zone where the Mackenzie River plume water and open sea water meet. Diet examinations were performed on 220 Arctic cod, which were found undamaged from sampling. We observed a gradual decrease in prey number per fish and increase in prey size as larvae grew which corresponded to a shift from Rotifera and nauplii towards larger copepodid stages. However, at all sizes, the larvae remain generalists and feed on a broad range of organisms. Environmental changes due to climate warming could have a two-fold impact on fish larvae feeding in the studied region. First, the potential for increased primary production may lead to increased zooplankton production that may impact the feeding and nutrition positively. On the other hand, greater discharge of turbid water from the Mackenzie River may reduce light penetration in the water column that may negatively influence the ability of visual predators to successively forage.

  16. Contagious Ecthyma, Rangiferine Brucellosis, and Lungworm Infection in a Muskox ( Ovibos moschatus ) from the Canadian Arctic, 2014.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomaselli, Matilde; Dalton, Chimoné; Duignan, Pádraig J; Kutz, Susan; van der Meer, Frank; Kafle, Pratap; Surujballi, Om; Turcotte, Claude; Checkley, Sylvia

    2016-07-01

    An adult male muskox ( Ovibos moschatus ), harvested on 26 August 2014 on Victoria Island, Nunavut, in the Canadian Arctic, had proliferative dermatitis on the muzzle and fetlocks suggestive of contagious ecthyma or orf (Parapoxvirus). Histopathologic features of the lesions were consistent with this diagnosis. Orf virus DNA, phylogenetically similar to an isolate from a captive muskox of the Minnesota Zoo, US, was detected in the lesions by PCR using Parapoxvirus primers. Additionally, there was a metaphyseal abscess with a cortical fistula in the right metacarpus from which Brucella suis biovar 4 was isolated and identification supported by PCR. Brucella spp. antibodies were detected in serum. Finally, 212 nodules were dissected from the lungs. Fecal analysis and lung examination demonstrated co-infection with the lungworms Umingmakstrongylus pallikuukensis and Varestrongylus eleguneniensis. The zoonotic potential of orf and rangiferine brucellosis adds an important public health dimension to this case, particularly given that muskoxen are a valuable source of food for Arctic residents. Careful examination of these pathogens at a population level is needed as they may contribute to muskox population decline and potentially constitute a driver of food insecurity for local communities. This case underscores the importance of wildlife health surveillance as a management tool to conserve wildlife populations and maintain food security in subsistence-oriented communities. PMID:27285415

  17. Benthic primary production and mineralization in a High Arctic fjord

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Attard, Karl; Hancke, Kasper; Sejr, Mikael K.;

    2016-01-01

    Coastal and shelf systems likely exert major influence on Arctic Ocean functioning, yet key ecosystem processes remain poorly quantified. We employed the aquatic eddy covariance (AEC) oxygen (O2) flux method to estimate benthic primary production and mineralization in a High Arctic Greenland fjord...

  18. High-Arctic butterflies become smaller with rising temperatures

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bowden, Joseph James; Eskildsen, Anne; Hansen, Rikke Reisner;

    2015-01-01

    size but long growing seasons could also increase body size as was recently shown in an Arctic spider species. Here, we present the longest known time series on body size variation in two High-Arctic butterfly species: Boloria chariclea and Colias hecla. We measured wing length of nearly 4500...

  19. Canadian Arctic sea ice reconstructed from bromine in the Greenland NEEM ice core.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spolaor, Andrea; Vallelonga, Paul; Turetta, Clara; Maffezzoli, Niccolò; Cozzi, Giulio; Gabrieli, Jacopo; Barbante, Carlo; Goto-Azuma, Kumiko; Saiz-Lopez, Alfonso; Cuevas, Carlos A; Dahl-Jensen, Dorthe

    2016-09-21

    Reconstructing the past variability of Arctic sea ice provides an essential context for recent multi-year sea ice decline, although few quantitative reconstructions cover the Holocene period prior to the earliest historical records 1,200 years ago. Photochemical recycling of bromine is observed over first-year, or seasonal, sea ice in so-called "bromine explosions" and we employ a 1-D chemistry transport model to quantify processes of bromine enrichment over first-year sea ice and depositional transport over multi-year sea ice and land ice. We report bromine enrichment in the Northwest Greenland Eemian NEEM ice core since the end of the Eemian interglacial 120,000 years ago, finding the maximum extension of first-year sea ice occurred approximately 9,000 years ago during the Holocene climate optimum, when Greenland temperatures were 2 to 3 °C above present values. First-year sea ice extent was lowest during the glacial stadials suggesting complete coverage of the Arctic Ocean by multi-year sea ice. These findings demonstrate a clear relationship between temperature and first-year sea ice extent in the Arctic and suggest multi-year sea ice will continue to decline as polar amplification drives Arctic temperatures beyond the 2 °C global average warming target of the recent COP21 Paris climate agreement.

  20. Canadian Arctic sea ice reconstructed from bromine in the Greenland NEEM ice core

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spolaor, Andrea; Vallelonga, Paul; Turetta, Clara; Maffezzoli, Niccolò; Cozzi, Giulio; Gabrieli, Jacopo; Barbante, Carlo; Goto-Azuma, Kumiko; Saiz-Lopez, Alfonso; Cuevas, Carlos A.; Dahl-Jensen, Dorthe

    2016-01-01

    Reconstructing the past variability of Arctic sea ice provides an essential context for recent multi-year sea ice decline, although few quantitative reconstructions cover the Holocene period prior to the earliest historical records 1,200 years ago. Photochemical recycling of bromine is observed over first-year, or seasonal, sea ice in so-called “bromine explosions” and we employ a 1-D chemistry transport model to quantify processes of bromine enrichment over first-year sea ice and depositional transport over multi-year sea ice and land ice. We report bromine enrichment in the Northwest Greenland Eemian NEEM ice core since the end of the Eemian interglacial 120,000 years ago, finding the maximum extension of first-year sea ice occurred approximately 9,000 years ago during the Holocene climate optimum, when Greenland temperatures were 2 to 3 °C above present values. First-year sea ice extent was lowest during the glacial stadials suggesting complete coverage of the Arctic Ocean by multi-year sea ice. These findings demonstrate a clear relationship between temperature and first-year sea ice extent in the Arctic and suggest multi-year sea ice will continue to decline as polar amplification drives Arctic temperatures beyond the 2 °C global average warming target of the recent COP21 Paris climate agreement. PMID:27650478

  1. Temporal and spatial variabilities of atmospheric polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorine (OC) pesticides and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in the Canadian Arctic: results from a decade of monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hung, H; Blanchard, P; Halsall, C J; Bidleman, T F; Stern, G A; Fellin, P; Muir, D C G; Barrie, L A; Jantunen, L M; Helm, P A; Ma, J; Konoplev, A

    2005-04-15

    The Northern Contaminants Program (NCP) baseline monitoring project was established in 1992 to monitor for persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in Arctic air. Under this project, weekly samples of air were collected at four Canadian and two Russian arctic sites, namely Alert, Nunavut; Tagish, Yukon; Little Fox Lake, Yukon; Kinngait, Nunavut; Dunai Island, Russia and Amderma, Russia. Selected POPs, including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and organochlorine (OC) pesticides, were analyzed in both the gas and particulate phases. This paper summarizes results obtained from this project in the past 5 years. Temporal trends were developed for atmospheric PCBs and OCs observed at Alert using a digital filtration (DF) technique. It was found that trends developed with 5 years of data (1993-1997) did not differ significantly from those determined with 7 years of data (1993-1999). This implies that with the DF technique, long-term trends can still be developed with less than 10 years of data. An acceleration in decline of OC and PCB air concentrations was noted in 1999 for some compounds, although the reason is unknown. Monitoring efforts must continue to assess the effect of this decline on the long-term trends of POPs in the Canadian Arctic. Occasional high trans-/cis-chlordane ratios and heptachlor air concentrations measured at Alert between 1995 and 1997 suggests sporadic fresh usage of chlordane-based pesticides. However, significant decreasing trends of chlordanes along with their chemical signatures has provided evidence that emission of old soil residues is replacing new usage as an important source to the atmosphere. Measurements of OC air concentrations conducted at Kinngait in 1994-1995 and 2000-2001 indicated faster OC removal at this location than at Alert. This may be attributed to the proximity of Kinngait to temperate regions where both biotic and abiotic degradation rates are faster. The PAH concentrations observed

  2. Soil Biota and Litter Decay in High Arctic Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    González, G.; Rivera, F.; Makarova, O.; Gould, W. A.

    2006-12-01

    Frost heave action contributes to the formation of non-sorted circles in the High Arctic. Non-sorted circles tend to heave more than the surrounding tundra due to deeper thaw and the formation of ice lenses. Thus, the geomorphology, soils and vegetation on the centers of the patterned-ground feature (non-sorted circles) as compared to the surrounding soils (inter-circles) can be different. We established a decomposition experiment to look at in situ decay rates of the most dominant graminoid species on non-sorted circles and adjacent inter-circle soils along a climatic gradient in the Canadian High Arctic as a component of a larger study looking at the biocomplexity of small-featured patterned ground ecosystems. Additionally, we investigated variation in soil chemical properties and biota, including soil microarthropods and microbial composition and biomass, as they relate to climate, topographic position, and litter decay rates. Our three sites locations, from coldest to warmest, are Isachsen, Ellef Ringnes Island (ER), NU (bioclimatic subzone A); Mould Bay (MB), Prince Patrick Island, NT (bioclimatic subzone B), and Green Cabin (GC), Aulavik National Park, Thomsen River, Banks Island, NT (bioclimatic subzone C). Our sample design included the selection of 15 non-sorted circles and adjacent inter-circle areas within the zonal vegetation at each site (a total of 90 sites), and a second set of 3 non-sorted circles and adjacent inter-circle areas in dry, mesic and wet tundra at each of the sites. Soil invertebrates were sampled at each site using both pitfall traps, soil microbial biomass was determined using substrate induced respiration and bacterial populations were determined using the most probable number method. Decomposition rates were measured using litterbags and as the percent of mass remaining of Carex misandra, Luzula nivalis and Alopecuris alpinus in GC, MB and ER, respectively. Our findings indicate these graminoid species decayed significantly over

  3. Giardia assemblage A: human genotype in muskoxen in the Canadian Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nagy John

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract As part of an ongoing program assessing the biodiversity and impacts of parasites in Arctic ungulates we examined 72 fecal samples from muskoxen on Banks Island, Northwest Territories, Canada for Giardia and Cryptosporidium. Cryptosporidium spp. were not detected, but 21% of the samples were positive for Giardia. Sequencing of four isolates of Giardia demonstrated G. duodenalis, Assemblage A, a zoonotic genotype.

  4. Methane emissions from a high arctic valley: findings and challenges

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mastepanov, Mikhail; Sigsgaard, Charlotte; Ström, Lena;

    2008-01-01

    Wet tundra ecosystems are well-known to be a significant source of atmospheric methane. With the predicted stronger effect of global climate change on arctic terrestrial ecosystems compared to lower-latitudes, there is a special obligation to study the natural diversity and the range of possible...... feedback effects on global climate that could arise from Arctic tundra ecosystems. One of the prime candidates for such a feedback mechanism is a potential change in the emissions of methane. Long-term datasets on methane emissions from high arctic sites are almost non-existing but badly needed...

  5. Peopling of the high Arctic - induced by sea ice?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funder, Svend

    2010-05-01

    'We travelled in the winter after the return of daylight and did not go into fixed camp until spring, when the ice broke up. There was good hunting on the way, seals, beluga, walrus, bear.' (From Old Merkrusârk's account of his childhood's trek from Baffin Island to Northwest Greenland, told to Knud Rasmussen on Saunders Island in 1904) Five thousand years ago people moving eastwards from Beringia spread over the barrens of the Canadian high Arctic. This was the first of three waves of prehistoric Arctic 'cultures', which eventually reached Greenland. The passage into Greenland has to go through the northernmost and most hostile part of the country with a 5 month Polar night, and to understand this extraordinary example of human behaviour and endurance, it has been customary to invoke a more favourable (warmer) climate. This presentation suggests that land-fast sea ice, i.e. stationary sea ice anchored to the coast, is among the most important environmental factors behind the spread of prehistoric polar cultures. The ice provides the road for travelling and social communion - and access to the most important source of food, the ocean. In the LongTerm Project (2006 and 2007) we attempted to establish a Holocene record for sea ice variations along oceanic coasts in northernmost Greenland. Presently the coasts north of 80° N are beleaguered by year-round sea ice - for ten months this is land-fast ice, and only for a period in the stormy autumn months are the coasts exposed to pack-ice. This presentation Land-fast ice - as opposed to pack-ice - is a product of local temperatures, but its duration over the year, and especially into the daylight season, is also conditioned by other factors, notably wind strength. In the geological record we recognize long lasting land-fast ice by two absences: absence of traces of wave action (no beach formation), which, however, can also be a result of pack-ice along the coast; - and absence of driftwood on the shore (land-fast ice

  6. Bioluminescence in the high Arctic during the polar night

    OpenAIRE

    Berge, Jørgen; Båtnes, Anna Solvang; Johnsen, Geir; Blackwell, Susan; Moline, Mark A.

    2012-01-01

    This study examines the composition and activity of the planktonic community during the polar night in the high Arctic Kongsfjord, Svalbard. Our results are the first published evidence of bioluminescence among zooplankton during the Arctic polar night. The observations were collected by a bathyphotometer detecting bioluminescence, integrated into an autonomous underwater vehicle, to determine the concentration and intensity of bioluminescent flashes as a function of time of day and depth. To...

  7. Polarimetric C-/X-band Synthetic Aperture Radar Observations of Melting Sea Ice in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Casey, J. A.; Beckers, J. F.; Brossier, E.; Haas, C.

    2013-12-01

    Operational ice information services rely heavily on space-borne synthetic aperture radar (SAR) data for the production of ice charts to meet their mandate of providing timely and accurate sea ice information to support safe and efficient marine operations. During the summer melt period, the usefulness of SAR data for sea ice monitoring is limited by the presence of wet snow and melt ponds on the ice surface, which can mask the signature of the underlying ice. This is a critical concern for ice services whose clients (e.g. commercial shipping, cruise tourism, resource exploration and extraction) are most active at this time of year when sea ice is at its minimum extent, concentration and thickness. As a result, there is a need to further quantify the loss of ice information in SAR data during the melt season and to identify what information can still be retrieved about ice surface conditions and melt pond evolution at this time of year. To date the majority of studies have been limited to analysis of single-polarization C-band SAR data. This study will investigate the potential complimentary and unique sea ice information that polarimetric C- and X-band SAR data can provide to supplement the information available from traditional single co-polarized C-band SAR data. A time-series of polarimetric C- and X-band SAR data was acquired over Jones Sound in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, in the vicinity of the Grise Fiord, Nunavut. Five RADARSAT-2 Wide Fine Quad-pol images and 11 TerraSAR-X StripMap dual-pol (HH/VV) images were acquired. The time-series begins at the onset of melt in early June and extends through advanced melt conditions in late July. Over this period several ponding and drainage events and two snowfall events occurred. Field observations of sea ice properties were collected using an Ice Mass Balance (IMB) buoy, hourly photos from a time-lapse camera deployed on a coastal cliff, and manual in situ measurements of snow thickness and melt pond depth

  8. Sterols and Stanols Preserved in Pond Sediments Track Seabird Biovectors in a High Arctic Environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Wenhan; Sun, Liguang; Kimpe, Linda E; Mallory, Mark L; Smol, John P; Gallant, Lauren R; Li, Jinping; Blais, Jules M

    2016-09-01

    Seabirds are major vertebrates in the coastal ecosystems of the Canadian High Arctic, where they transport substantial amounts of marine-derived nutrients and pollutants from oceans to land by depositing guano and stomach oils to their nesting area, which often includes nearby freshwater ponds. Here we present novel indicators for evaluating the impact of seabirds on freshwater ecosystems. The ratio of cholesterol/(cholesterol + sitosterol) in pond sediments showed significant enrichment near a nesting colony of northern fulmars (Fulmarus glacialis) and was significantly correlated with ornithogenic enrichment of sediment as determined by sedimentary δ(15)N. The sterol ratio was also correlated with several bioaccumulative persistent organic pollutants (POPs), suggesting its usefulness in tracking biovector enrichment of contaminants. Human-derived epicoprostanol was also analyzed in the sediments, and its relationship with an abandoned, prehistoric camp was recorded, suggesting its potential as a tracer of prehistoric human activities in the Arctic. Sterols and stanols preserved in sediments appear to be useful geochemical tools that will inform our understanding of migratory species and the presence of prehistoric human populations in the Arctic, and possibly other animal populations. PMID:27409713

  9. Legal Instruments for Marine Sanctuary in the High Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kathleen Morris

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available In response to heightened threat to Arctic marine biodiversity due to polar ice melt, the following paper seeks to use qualitative secondary research to analyze existing anthropogenic threat to Arctic marine life and to evaluate current efforts on the part of the Arctic Council to protect biodiversity through a network of state-created marine protected areas (MPAs. We conclude that the current method for MPA creation fails to offer adequate pathways for creation of MPAs in Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction (ABNJ, the high seas which fall beyond individual countries’ exclusive economic zones (EEZs. Thus, our central research question is to determine what legal basis and mechanisms exist for the creation of MPAs in ABNJs, with particular focus on the Arctic marine environment. In keeping with The United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity’s (UNCBD precautionary approach, along with specific rules embodied within The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS, we find a basis for creation of MPAs in the ABNJ. The text evaluates findings from the Boulogne-sur-Mer international conference of 2011 to suggest that such MPA creation in ABNJ could be approached via four pathways: regional agreement, UNCLOS implementing agreement, UNCBD additional protocol, or an Arctic Sanctuary modeled on the Antarctic Treaty. While we explore all four options, we argue that, due to geopolitical constraints, a comprehensive regional agreement offers the best path to High Arctic MPA creation.

  10. Indirect interactions in the High Arctic.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tomas Roslin

    Full Text Available Indirect interactions as mediated by higher and lower trophic levels have been advanced as key forces structuring herbivorous arthropod communities around the globe. Here, we present a first quantification of the interaction structure of a herbivore-centered food web from the High Arctic. Targeting the Lepidoptera of Northeast Greenland, we introduce generalized overlap indices as a novel tool for comparing different types of indirect interactions. First, we quantify the scope for top-down-up interactions as the probability that a herbivore attacking plant species i itself fed as a larva on species j. Second, we gauge this herbivore overlap against the potential for bottom-up-down interactions, quantified as the probability that a parasitoid attacking herbivore species i itself developed as a larva on species j. Third, we assess the impact of interactions with other food web modules, by extending the core web around the key herbivore Sympistis nigrita to other predator guilds (birds and spiders. We find the host specificity of both herbivores and parasitoids to be variable, with broad generalists occurring in both trophic layers. Indirect links through shared resources and through shared natural enemies both emerge as forces with a potential for shaping the herbivore community. The structure of the host-parasitoid submodule of the food web suggests scope for classic apparent competition. Yet, based on predation experiments, we estimate that birds kill as many (8% larvae of S. nigrita as do parasitoids (8%, and that spiders kill many more (38%. Interactions between these predator guilds may result in further complexities. Our results caution against broad generalizations from studies of limited food web modules, and show the potential for interactions within and between guilds of extended webs. They also add a data point from the northernmost insect communities on Earth, and describe the baseline structure of a food web facing imminent climate

  11. Indirect interactions in the High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roslin, Tomas; Wirta, Helena; Hopkins, Tapani; Hardwick, Bess; Várkonyi, Gergely

    2013-01-01

    Indirect interactions as mediated by higher and lower trophic levels have been advanced as key forces structuring herbivorous arthropod communities around the globe. Here, we present a first quantification of the interaction structure of a herbivore-centered food web from the High Arctic. Targeting the Lepidoptera of Northeast Greenland, we introduce generalized overlap indices as a novel tool for comparing different types of indirect interactions. First, we quantify the scope for top-down-up interactions as the probability that a herbivore attacking plant species i itself fed as a larva on species j. Second, we gauge this herbivore overlap against the potential for bottom-up-down interactions, quantified as the probability that a parasitoid attacking herbivore species i itself developed as a larva on species j. Third, we assess the impact of interactions with other food web modules, by extending the core web around the key herbivore Sympistis nigrita to other predator guilds (birds and spiders). We find the host specificity of both herbivores and parasitoids to be variable, with broad generalists occurring in both trophic layers. Indirect links through shared resources and through shared natural enemies both emerge as forces with a potential for shaping the herbivore community. The structure of the host-parasitoid submodule of the food web suggests scope for classic apparent competition. Yet, based on predation experiments, we estimate that birds kill as many (8%) larvae of S. nigrita as do parasitoids (8%), and that spiders kill many more (38%). Interactions between these predator guilds may result in further complexities. Our results caution against broad generalizations from studies of limited food web modules, and show the potential for interactions within and between guilds of extended webs. They also add a data point from the northernmost insect communities on Earth, and describe the baseline structure of a food web facing imminent climate change. PMID

  12. Patterns of hydrogen peroxide among lakes of the Mackenzie Delta, western Canadian Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Febria, C.M. [Simon Fraser Univ., Burnaby, BC (Canada). Dept. of Geography; Toronto Univ., ON (Canada). Dept. of Life Sciences; Lesack, L.F.W. [Simon Fraser Univ., Burnaby, BC (Canada). Dept. of Geography; Simon Fraser Univ., Burnaby, BC (Canada). Dept. of Biological Sciences; Gareis, J.A.L. [Simon Fraser Univ., Burnaby, BC (Canada). Dept. of Biological Sciences; Bothwell, M.L. [Environment Canada, Nanaimo, BC (Canada). Pacific Biological Station

    2006-09-15

    It is anticipated that lakes in the Mackenzie Delta will experience a shift in flood frequency and magnitude as a result of climate change. Stratospheric ozone loss in the circumpolar Arctic is expected to increase levels of ultraviolet radiation. This study represented the first of a series of studies assessing patterns of hydrogen peroxide (H{sub 2}O{sub 2}) produced by interactions of solar radiation and dissolved organic carbon (DOC) in surface waters of circumpolar Arctic river deltas. DOC plays an important role in the optical properties, energy cycling, and photochemical processes of surface waters. H{sub 2}O{sub 2} levels were tracked in 40 lakes during the open water season from the Arctic summer solstice to late summer. Diurnal dynamics of in situ H{sub 2}O{sub 2} were tracked in a pair of lakes with coloured and non-coloured contrasting DOC regimes. Buildup of H{sub 2}O{sub 2} was tracked in experimental microcosms of lake water exposed to manipulated UV levels. Results of the study indicated that H{sub 2}O{sub 2} levels were highest at the solstice and in intermittently flooded lakes. During the solstice, lakes with contrasting DOC regimes showed a cumulative buildup of H{sub 2}O{sub 2} during multiple cloudless days. H{sub 2}O{sub 2} was highest cumulatively in the Delta Lake, with a higher DOC concentration and low in colour. H{sub 2}O{sub 2} buildup in lake water shielded from UVB exposure was not significantly lower than micro-organisms in lake water exposed to full sunlight. Results indicated that the most significant photochemical effects on the seasonal dynamics of aquatic bacteria and other micro-organisms are likely to occur in the first weeks after ice-out. Effects include increased water clarity; an inhibition of biological processes due to both photochemical reactions and direct UVB; and unknown responses by the biological community to the resulting pool of labile, photolyzed DOC substrate that remains for the duration of the open water

  13. A case study of old-ice import and export through Peary and Sverdrup Channels in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago: 1998-2005

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alt, Bea; Wilson, Katherine; Carrières, Tom

    This case study attempts to quantify the amount and timing of the import, export and through-flow of old ice in the Peary Channel-Sverdrup Channel area of the northern Canadian Arctic Archipelago during the period 1998-2005. The study combines quantitative weekly area-averaged ice coverage evaluations from the Canadian Ice Service (CIS) Digital Archive with detailed analysis of RADARSAT imagery and ice-motion results from the CIS ice-motion algorithm. The results show that in 1998 more than 70% of the old ice in Peary-Sverdrup was lost, half by melt and export to the south and the other half by export north into the Arctic Ocean, and that no Arctic Ocean old ice was imported into Peary-Sverdrup. A net import of 10% old ice was seen in 1999, with some indication of through-flow into southern channels. In 2000, no net import of old ice occurred in Peary-Sverdrup, but there was significant through-flow, with evidence of old ice reaching the Northwest Passage by November. Full recovery of the old-ice regime was complete by the end of 2001. More than two-thirds of the recovery was due to the in situ formation of second-year ice. Conditions in the following 3 years were near normal.

  14. Inorganic carbon dynamics of melt pond-covered first year sea ice in the Canadian Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Geilfus, Nicolas-Xavier; Galley, R.J.; Crabeck, O.;

    2014-01-01

    Melt pond formation is a common feature of the spring and summer Arctic sea ice. However, the role of the melt ponds formation and the impact of the sea ice melt on both the direction and size of CO2 flux between air and sea is still unknown. Here we describe the CO2-carbonate chemistry of melting...... sea ice, melt ponds and the underlying seawater associated with measurement of CO2 fluxes across first year landfast sea ice in the Resolute Passage, Nunavut, in June 2012. Early in the melt season, the increase of the ice temperature and the subsequent decrease of the bulk ice salinity promote...... a strong decrease of the total alkalinity (TA), total dissolved inorganic carbon (TCO2) and partial pressure of CO2 (pCO2) within the bulk sea ice and the brine. Later on, melt pond formation affects both the bulk sea ice and the brine system. As melt ponds are formed from melted snow the in situ melt pond...

  15. Buried glacier ice in permafrost, a window to the past: examples from Bylot Island, Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fortier, D.; Coulombe, S.; Kanevskiy, M. Z.; Paquette, M.; Shur, Y.; Stephani, E.

    2011-12-01

    Bylot Island is located north of Baffin Island (73°N, 80°W) and is extensively covered by an ice cap and its outlet glaciers flowing towards the arctic lowland of the Lancaster formation. During summers of 2009 and 2011 several active-layer detachment slides exposed large massive ice bodies and other types of debris-rich ice that were interpreted as buried glacier ice. The upper part of the massive ice and debris-rich ice were usually in contact with various types of ice-contact or glacio-fluvial sediments and in some cases they were covered by mass wasting/colluvial deposits. This suggests that their preservation was likely related to burial of the ice and refreezing of the overlying sediments following permafrost aggradation. A preliminary analysis of the ice facies and ice crystals revealed the presence of four distinct types of ice: 1) clear-ice bodies with very few sediment and no organic inclusions. The ice crystals were large (cm), randomly oriented and air bubbles were observed at the junction of crystals. These characteristics could potentially indicate an englacial (snow-neve metamorphism) origin for these clear ice bodies; 2) large, meter thick, clear ice layers with no sediment, nor organics. The ice crystals were large (cm), several cm long, oriented in the same direction, and vertically aligned. These characteristics could potentially point to water that refroze in a tunnel incised in englacial ice; 3) Successive, mm to cm thick, ice layers, separated by undulating sand and gravel bands also containing cobles to boulder size rock fragments. These characteristics could potentially represent regelation ice formed at the base of glaciers and incorporated to the glacier sole; 4) mm to cm suspended aggregate of fine-grained sediments in clear ice. These micro-suspended and suspended cryostructures were sometimes deformed and aligned in the form of thin (mm) undulating layers. These micro-structures were very similar to basal ice facies, presumably

  16. Modelling high arctic percent vegetation cover using field digital images and high resolution satellite data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Nanfeng; Treitz, Paul

    2016-10-01

    In this study, digital images collected at a study site in the Canadian High Arctic were processed and classified to examine the spatial-temporal patterns of percent vegetation cover (PVC). To obtain the PVC of different plant functional groups (i.e., forbs, graminoids/sedges and mosses), field near infrared-green-blue (NGB) digital images were classified using an object-based image analysis (OBIA) approach. The PVC analyses comparing different vegetation types confirmed: (i) the polar semi-desert exhibited the lowest PVC with a large proportion of bare soil/rock cover; (ii) the mesic tundra cover consisted of approximately 60% mosses; and (iii) the wet sedge consisted almost exclusively of graminoids and sedges. As expected, the PVC and green normalized difference vegetation index (GNDVI; (RNIR - RGreen)/(RNIR + RGreen)), derived from field NGB digital images, increased during the summer growing season for each vegetation type: i.e., ∼5% (0.01) for polar semi-desert; ∼10% (0.04) for mesic tundra; and ∼12% (0.03) for wet sedge respectively. PVC derived from field images was found to be strongly correlated with WorldView-2 derived normalized difference spectral indices (NDSI; (Rx - Ry)/(Rx + Ry)), where Rx is the reflectance of the red edge (724.1 nm) or near infrared (832.9 nm and 949.3 nm) bands; Ry is the reflectance of the yellow (607.7 nm) or red (658.8 nm) bands with R2's ranging from 0.74 to 0.81. NDSIs that incorporated the yellow band (607.7 nm) performed slightly better than the NDSIs without, indicating that this band may be more useful for investigating Arctic vegetation that often includes large proportions of senescent vegetation throughout the growing season.

  17. Concentrations of mercury in tissues of beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) from several communities in the Canadian Arctic from 1981 to 2002.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lockhart, W L; Stern, G A; Wagemann, R; Hunt, R V; Metner, D A; DeLaronde, J; Dunn, B; Stewart, R E A; Hyatt, C K; Harwood, L; Mount, K

    2005-12-01

    Beluga whales have been hunted for food by Native People in the Canadian Arctic since prehistoric time. Here we report the results of analyses of total mercury in samples of liver, kidney, muscle and muktuk from collections over the period 1981-2002. We compare these results with human consumption guidelines and examine temporal and geographic variation. Liver has been analyzed more frequently than other organs and it has been used as the indicator organ. Mercury accumulates in the liver of the whales over time so that the whale ages are usually linked statistically to their levels of mercury in liver. Virtually all the samples of 566 animals analyzed contained mercury in liver at concentrations higher than the Canadian consumption guideline of 0.5 microg g-1 (wet weight) for fish. (There is no regulatory guideline for concentrations in marine mammals in Canada.) Samples from locations in the Mackenzie Delta in the western Canadian Arctic and from Pangnirtung in the eastern Canadian Arctic were obtained more often than from other location and these offered the best chances to determine whether levels have changed over time. Statistical outlier points were removed and the regressions of (ln) mercury in liver on age were used to calculate the level of mercury in whales of age 13.1 years in order to compare age-adjusted levels at different locations. These age-adjusted levels and also the slopes of regressions suggested that levels have increased in the Mackenzie Delta over the sampling period although not in a simple linear fashion. Other locations had fewer collections, generally spread over fewer years. Some of them indicated differences between sampling times but we could not establish whether these differences were simply temporal variation or whether they were segments of a consistent trend. For example, the levels in whales from Arviat were considerably higher in 1999 than in 1984 but we have only two samples. Similarly, samples from Iqaluit in 1994 exceeded

  18. High-Arctic Plant-Herbivore Interactions under Climate Influence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berg, Thomas B.; Schmidt, Niels M.; Høye, Toke Thomas;

    2008-01-01

    This chapter focuses on a 10-year data series from Zackenberg on the trophic interactions between two characteristic arctic plant species, arctic willow Salix arctica and mountain avens Dryas octopetala, and three herbivore species covering the very scale of size present at Zackenberg, namely...... by influencing their access to forage in winter. During winter, musk oxen prefer areas with a thin snow-cover, where food is most easily accessible. In contrast, lemmings seek areas with thick snow-cover, which provide protection from the cold and some predators. Therefore, lemmings may be affected directly...... by both the timing of onset and the duration of winter snow-cover. Musk oxen significantly reduced the productivity of arctic willow, while high densities of collared lemmings during winter reduced the production of mountain averts flowers in the following summer. Under a deep snow-layer scenario, climate...

  19. High-Arctic butterflies become smaller with rising temperatures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowden, Joseph J; Eskildsen, Anne; Hansen, Rikke R; Olsen, Kent; Kurle, Carolyn M; Høye, Toke T

    2015-10-01

    The response of body size to increasing temperature constitutes a universal response to climate change that could strongly affect terrestrial ectotherms, but the magnitude and direction of such responses remain unknown in most species. The metabolic cost of increased temperature could reduce body size but long growing seasons could also increase body size as was recently shown in an Arctic spider species. Here, we present the longest known time series on body size variation in two High-Arctic butterfly species: Boloria chariclea and Colias hecla. We measured wing length of nearly 4500 individuals collected annually between 1996 and 2013 from Zackenberg, Greenland and found that wing length significantly decreased at a similar rate in both species in response to warmer summers. Body size is strongly related to dispersal capacity and fecundity and our results suggest that these Arctic species could face severe challenges in response to ongoing rapid climate change. PMID:26445981

  20. A high-resolution ocean and sea-ice modelling system for the Arctic and North Atlantic oceans

    OpenAIRE

    Dupont, F.; Higginson, S.; Bourdallé-Badie, R.; Lu, Y; Roy, F.; G. C. Smith; Lemieux, J.-F.; G. Garric; Davidson, F.

    2015-01-01

    As part of the CONCEPTS (Canadian Operational Network of Coupled Environmental PredicTion Systems) initiative, a high-resolution (1/12°) ice–ocean regional model is developed covering the North Atlantic and the Arctic oceans. The long-term objective is to provide Canada with short-term ice–ocean predictions and hazard warnings in ice-infested regions. To evaluate the modelling component (as opposed to the analysis – or data-assimilation – component, which is not covered in t...

  1. Ecosystems on ice: the microbial ecology of Markham Ice Shelf in the high Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vincent, Warwick F; Mueller, Derek R; Bonilla, Sylvia

    2004-04-01

    Microbial communities occur throughout the cryosphere in a diverse range of ice-dominated habitats including snow, sea ice, glaciers, permafrost, and ice clouds. In each of these environments, organisms must be capable of surviving freeze-thaw cycles, persistent low temperatures for growth, extremes of solar radiation, and prolonged dormancy. These constraints may have been especially important during global cooling events in the past, including the Precambrian glaciations. One analogue of these early Earth conditions is the thick, landfast sea ice that occurs today at certain locations in the Arctic and Antarctic. These ice shelves contain liquid water for a brief period each summer, and support luxuriant microbial mat communities. Our recent studies of these mats on the Markham Ice Shelf (Canadian high Arctic) by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) showed that they contain high concentrations of chlorophylls a and b, and several carotenoids notably lutein, echinenone and beta-carotene. The largest peaks in the HPLC chromatograms were two UV-screening compounds known to be produced by cyanobacteria, scytonemin, and its decomposition product scytonemin-red. Microscopic analyses of the mats showed that they were dominated by the chlorophyte genera cf. Chlorosarcinopsis, Pleurastrum, Palmellopsis, and Bracteococcus, and cyanobacteria of the genera Nostoc, Phormidium, Leptolyngbya, and Gloeocapsa. From point transects and localized sampling we estimated a total standing stock on this ice shelf of up to 11,200 tonnes of organic matter. These observations underscore the ability of microbial communities to flourish despite the severe constraints imposed by the cryo-ecosystem environment.

  2. Is climate change affecting wolf populations in the high arctic?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mech, L.D. [Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center, Biological Resources Division, U.S. Geological Survey, 8711-37th St., SE, 58401-7317 Jamestown, North Dakota (United States)

    2004-11-01

    Global climate change may affect wolves in Canadas High Arctic (80{sup o} N) acting through three trophic levels (vegetation, herbivores, and wolves). A wolf pack dependent on muskoxen and arctic hares in the Eureka area of Ellesmere Island denned and produced pups most years from at least 1986 through 1997. However, when summer snow covered vegetation in 1997 and 2000 for the first time since records were kept, halving the herbivore nutrition-replenishment period, muskox and hare numbers dropped drastically, and the area stopped supporting denning wolves through 2003. The unusual weather triggering these events was consistent with global-climate-change phenomena.

  3. Contrasting retinoid and thyroid hormone status in differentially-contaminated northern fulmar colonies from the Canadian Arctic, Svalbard and the Faroe Islands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verreault, Jonathan; Helgason, Lisa B; Gabrielsen, Geir W; Dam, Maria; Braune, Birgit M

    2013-02-01

    The northern fulmar (Fulmarus glacialis) has previously been shown to accumulate a wide range, and occasionally high concentrations of organochlorines (OCs) (e.g., PCBs, chlorobenzenes, DDT- and chlordane-related compounds, dioxins and furans). The present study aimed to investigate, using a meta-analysis approach, the variations in cytochrome P450 (CYP) 1A-like enzyme induction based on ethoxyresorufin O-deethylase activity (EROD) and selected physiological variables (retinoids and thyroid hormones) in northern fulmar breeding in three differentially OC-exposed populations: Nunavut (Canadian Arctic), Svalbard (Norwegian Arctic) and the Faroe Islands. Substantially higher (roughly two-fold) OC levels were uncovered in the liver of this long-lived fulmarine petrel breeding in the Faroe Islands relative to Svalbard and Nunavut. Liver levels of PCDDs, PCDFs and non-ortho PCBs in Faroe Islands fulmars were amongst the highest reported thus far in any seabirds from the northern regions. Positive correlations were depicted in combined fulmars (all three populations) between hepatic EROD activity and concentrations of OCs, in which strongest associations were found for dioxin-like compound (PCDFs and PCDDs) and TEQ concentrations. Moreover, moderate to strong positive correlations were found between liver OC concentrations and plasma total thyroxin (TT(4)) levels and TT(4)/total triiodothyronine (TT(3)) level ratios, as well as strong negative correlations between the same suite of OCs and plasma TT(3) levels. Hepatic OC concentrations (PCBs, PCDDs, PCDFs, HCB, p,p'-DDE and oxychlordane) also were positively correlated with hepatic retinyl palmitate levels which, in turn, were associated with a significant decrease in plasma retinol levels and somewhat unchanged liver retinol levels. The present meta-analysis investigation on northern fulmar breeding in three geographically-distant sites illustrated that OC exposure (mainly PCBs and dioxins/furans) may be associated with

  4. Heterotrophic and Autotrophic Microbial Populations in Cold Perennial Springs of the High Arctic ▿ †

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perreault, Nancy N.; Greer, Charles W.; Andersen, Dale T.; Tille, Stefanie; Lacrampe-Couloume, Georges; Lollar, Barbara Sherwood; Whyte, Lyle G.

    2008-01-01

    The saline springs of Gypsum Hill in the Canadian high Arctic are a rare example of cold springs originating from deep groundwater and rising to the surface through thick permafrost. The heterotrophic bacteria and autotrophic sulfur-oxidizing bacteria (up to 40% of the total microbial community) isolated from the spring waters and sediments were classified into four phyla (Actinobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Firmicutes, and Proteobacteria) based on 16S rRNA gene analysis; heterotrophic isolates were primarily psychrotolerant, salt-tolerant, facultative anaerobes. Some of the isolates contained genes for thiosulfate oxidation (soxB) and anoxygenic photosynthesis (pufM), possibly enabling the strains to better compete in these sulfur-rich environments subject to long periods of illumination in the Arctic summer. Although leucine uptake by the spring water microbial community was low, CO2 uptake was relatively high under dark incubation, reinforcing the idea that primary production by chemoautotrophs is an important process in the springs. The small amounts of hydrocarbons in gases exsolving from the springs (0.38 to 0.51% CH4) were compositionally and isotopically consistent with microbial methanogenesis and possible methanotrophy. Anaerobic heterotrophic sulfur oxidation and aerobic autotrophic sulfur oxidation activities were demonstrated in sediment slurries. Overall, our results describe an active microbial community capable of sustainability in an extreme environment that experiences prolonged periods of continuous light or darkness, low temperatures, and moderate salinity, where life seems to rely on chemolithoautotrophy. PMID:18805995

  5. Increased plant biomass in a High Arctic heath community from 1981 to 2008.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hudson, J M G; Henry, G H R

    2009-10-01

    The Canadian High Arctic has been warming for several decades. Over this period, tundra plant communities have been influenced by regional climate change, as well as other disturbances. At a site on Ellesmere Island, Nunavut, Canada, we measured biomass and composition changes in a heath community over 13 years using a point-intercept method in permanent plots (1995-2007) and over 27 years using a biomass harvest comparison (1981-2008). Results from both methods indicate that the community became more productive over time, suggesting that this ecosystem is currently in transition. Bryophyte and evergreen shrub abundances increased, while deciduous shrub, forb, graminoid, and lichen cover did not change. Species diversity also remained unchanged. Because of the greater evergreen shrub cover, canopy height increased. From 1995 to 2007, mean annual temperature and growing season length increased at the site. Maximum thaw depth increased, while soil water content did not change. We attribute the increased productivity of this community to regional warming over the past 30-50 years. This study provides the first plot-based evidence for the recent pan-Arctic increase in tundra productivity detected by satellite-based remote-sensing and repeat-photography studies. These types of ground-level observations are critical tools for detecting and projecting long-term community-level responses to warming. PMID:19886474

  6. Potential for mercury reduction by microbes in the high arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Poulain, Alexandre J; Ní Chadhain, Sinéad M; Ariya, Parisa A; Amyot, Marc; Garcia, Edenise; Campbell, Peter G C; Zylstra, Gerben J; Barkay, Tamar

    2007-04-01

    The contamination of polar regions due to the global distribution of anthropogenic pollutants is of great concern because it leads to the bioaccumulation of toxic substances, methylmercury among them, in Arctic food chains. Here we present the first evidence that microbes in the high Arctic possess and express diverse merA genes, which specify the reduction of ionic mercury [Hg(II)] to the volatile elemental form [Hg(0)]. The sampled microbial biomass, collected from microbial mats in a coastal lagoon and from the surface of marine macroalgae, was comprised of bacteria that were most closely related to psychrophiles that had previously been described in polar environments. We used a kinetic redox model, taking into consideration photoredox reactions as well as mer-mediated reduction, to assess if the potential for Hg(II) reduction by Arctic microbes can affect the toxicity and environmental mobility of mercury in the high Arctic. Results suggested that mer-mediated Hg(II) reduction could account for most of the Hg(0) that is produced in high Arctic waters. At the surface, with only 5% metabolically active cells, up to 68% of the mercury pool was resolved by the model as biogenic Hg(0). At a greater depth, because of incident light attenuation, the significance of photoredox transformations declined and merA-mediated activity could account for up to 90% of Hg(0) production. These findings highlight the importance of microbial redox transformations in the biogeochemical cycling, and thus the toxicity and mobility, of mercury in polar regions.

  7. Ice-sheet erosion and the stripping of Tertiary regolith from Baffin Island, eastern Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Refsnider, Kurt A.; Miller, Gifford H.

    2013-05-01

    The erosion of glaciated regions and concomitant changes in ice sheet dynamics through the Pleistocene are poorly documented. The Baffin Island landscape, which has been shaped by the Foxe Sector of the Laurentide Ice Sheet (LIS), contains a variety of glacial and proximal glaciomarine sedimentary archives spanning the Pleistocene. We examine these records to better understand when Tertiary regolith was stripped from beneath the Foxe Sector of the LIS. Till on the interior plateaux of the island in areas with scoured bedrock have low chemical index of alteration (CIA) values, low meteoric 10Be (10Bemet) concentrations, and clay mineralogy consistent with erosion from an unweathered bedrock source. However, in some areas in between fiord onset zones, more weathered till is present, containing considerably higher CIA values, high 10Bemet concentrations, and secondary clay mineral weathering products, implying that the till has persisted on the landscape and weathered during successive glaciations. Using these weathering signatures, we analyze the coastal glaciogenic deposits of the Clyde Foreland Formation (CFF) at two sites for evidence of Tertiary regolith removal from the interior of Baffin Island by LIS erosion. Provenance indicators within the CFF demonstrate that Pleistocene LIS ice flow lines across Baffin Island have remained generally constant. The oldest CFF glaciogenic unit, likely representing one of the first, if not the first, LIS advances across Baffin Island, had high 10Bemet concentrations at the time of deposition consistent with extensive regolith erosion. Evidence of notably weathered sediment is absent in all younger units, suggesting that Tertiary regolith was likely largely stripped from the interior of the island by 1.6 ± 0.2 Ma.

  8. Growth of a young pingo in the Canadian Arctic observed by RADARSAT-2 interferometric satellite radar

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samsonov, Sergey V.; Lantz, Trevor C.; Kokelj, Steven V.; Zhang, Yu

    2016-04-01

    Advancements in radar technology are increasing our ability to detect Earth surface deformation in permafrost environments. In this paper we use satellite Differential Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (DInSAR) to describe the growth of a large, relatively young pingo in the Tuktoyaktuk Coastlands. High-resolution RADARSAT-2 imagery (2011-2014) analyzed with the Multidimensional Small Baseline Subset (MSBAS) DInSAR revealed a maximum 2.7 cm yr-1 of domed uplift located in a drained lake basin. Satellite measurements suggest that this feature is one of the largest diameter pingos in the region that is presently growing. Observed changes in elevation were modeled as a 348 × 290 m uniformly loaded elliptical plate with clamped edge. Analysis of historical aerial photographs suggested that ground uplift at this location initiated sometime between 1935 and 1951 following drainage of the residual pond. Uplift is largely due to the growth of intrusive ice, because the 9 % expansion of pore water associated with permafrost aggradation into saturated sands is not sufficient to explain the observed short- and long-term deformation rates. The modeled thickness of ice-rich permafrost using the Northern Ecosystem Soil Temperature (NEST) was consistent with the maximum height of this feature. Modeled permafrost aggradation from 1972 to 2014 approximated elevation changes estimated from aerial photographs for that time period. Taken together, these lines of evidence indicate that uplift is at least in part a result of freezing of the sub-pingo water lens. Seasonal variations in the uplift rate seen in the DInSAR data closely match the modeled seasonal pattern in the deepening rate of freezing front. This study demonstrates that interferometric satellite radar can detect and contribute to understanding the dynamics of terrain uplift in response to permafrost aggradation and ground ice development in remote polar environments. The present-day growth rate is smaller than

  9. Invertebrate communities of the High Arctic ponds in Hornsund

    OpenAIRE

    Luoto Tomi P.; Oksman Mimmi; Ojala Antti E.K.

    2016-01-01

    How environmental conditions influence current distributions of organisms at the local scale in sensitive High Arctic freshwaters is essential to understand in order to better comprehend the cascading consequences of the ongoing climate change. This knowledge is also important background data for paleolimnological assessments of long−term limno− ecological changes and in describing the range of environmental variability. We sampled five limnologically different freshwater sites...

  10. Graduate training in Earth science across borders and disciplines: ArcTrain -"Processes and impacts of climate change in the North Atlantic Ocean and the Canadian Arctic"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stein, Rüdiger; Kucera, Michal; Walter, Maren; de Vernal, Anne

    2015-04-01

    Due to a complex set of feedback processes collectively known as "polar amplification", the Arctic realm is expected to experience a greater-than-average response to global climate forcing. The cascades of feedback processes that connect the Arctic cryosphere, ocean and atmosphere remain incompletely constrained by observations and theory and are difficult to simulate in climate models. Our capacity to predict the future of the region and assess the impacts of Arctic change processes on global and regional environments hinges on the availability of interdisciplinary experts with strong international experience and understanding of the science/society interface. This is the basis of the International Research Training Group "Processes and impacts of climate change in the North Atlantic Ocean and the Canadian Arctic - ArcTrain", which was initiated in 2013. ArcTrain aims to educate PhD students in an interdisciplinary environment that combines paleoclimatology, physical oceanography, remote sensing and glaciology with comprehensive Earth system modelling, including sea-ice and ice-sheet components. The qualification program for the PhD students includes joint supervision, mandatory research residences at partner institutions, field courses on land and on sea (Floating University), annual meetings and training workshops and a challenging structured training in expert skills and transferrable skills. Its aim is to enhance the career prospects and employability of the graduates in a challenging international job market across academic and applied sectors. ArcTrain is a collaborative project at the University of Bremen and the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven. The German part of the project is designed to continue for nine years and educate three cohorts of twelve PhD students each. The Canadian partners comprise a consortium of eight universities led by the GEOTOP cluster at the Université du Québec à Montréal and including

  11. Bacterial reduction of mercury in the high arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Møller, Annette Klæstrup

    from three snow depths and freshwater only showed a scattered representation of the phyla and genera in comparison to strains identified by culture independent methods. The microbial composition of all arctic sample sites was significantly different, with the two uppermost snow layers being most......, Bacteroidetes, Actinobacteria and Planctomycetes in freshwater. The bacteria identified in this study both included phylotypes commonly found in cold environments as well as rare phylotypes. During the time of sampling atmospheric ozone measurements and total Hg measurements in the snow indicated...... suggested that this may be important in the deeper snow layers. This highlights the importance of microbial mercury transformation in the biogeochemical mercury cycling in the High Arctic. While bacterial Hg reduction by the mercuric reductase, MerA, is widespread in temperate environments, its distribution...

  12. Bioluminescence in the high Arctic during the polar night.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berge, J; Båtnes, A S; Johnsen, G; Blackwell, S M; Moline, M A

    2012-01-01

    This study examines the composition and activity of the planktonic community during the polar night in the high Arctic Kongsfjord, Svalbard. Our results are the first published evidence of bioluminescence among zooplankton during the Arctic polar night. The observations were collected by a bathyphotometer detecting bioluminescence, integrated into an autonomous underwater vehicle, to determine the concentration and intensity of bioluminescent flashes as a function of time of day and depth. To further understand community dynamics and composition, plankton nets were used to collect organisms passing through the bathyphotometer along with traditional vertical net tows. Additionally, using a moored bathyphotometer closed to the sampling site, the bioluminescence potential itself was shown not to have a diurnal or circadian rhythm. Rather, our results provide evidence for a diel vertical migration of bioluminescent zooplankton that does not correspond to any externally detectable changes in illumination.

  13. A subglacial landform assemblage on the outer-shelf of M'Clure Strait, Canadian Arctic, ploughed by deglacial iceberg keels

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batchelor, Christine; Dowdeswell, Julian; Dowdeswell, Evelyn; Todd, Brian

    2015-04-01

    M'Clure Strait in the Canadian Beaufort Sea is one of the largest cross-shelf troughs in the High Arctic, with a length of over 1000 km and a maximum cross-trough width of around 250 km. M'Clure Strait has been suggested to be the former location of a fast-flowing ice stream which drained the northwestern margin of the Laurentide Ice Sheet during the Late Wisconsinan glaciation, and probably also during a number of earlier Quaternary full-glacial periods. The Late Wisconsinan ice stream in M'Clure Strait is interpreted to have extended to the shelf break between 21 and 16 ka ago, before undergoing rapid retreat. The ice stream has been suggested to have undergone vigorous episodes of activity during the last deglaciation; ice export events from the M'Clure Strait ice stream may have been responsible for the formation of distinctive layers of ice-rafted debris in the Arctic Ocean during regional deglaciation. Here, we present multibeam bathymetric data of the seafloor of outermost M'Clure Strait. Low rates of post-glacial sedimentation have led to the preservation of an unusual assemblage of cross-cutting subglacial, glacifluvial and glacimarine landforms on the M'Clure Strait seafloor. The assemblage of glacigenic landforms records the advance and retreat of a fast-flowing ice stream. Highly-elongate mega-scale glacial lineations (MSGLs) provide evidence for the advance of the last, Late Wisconsinan ice stream through M'Clure Strait to within at least 8 km of the shelf break. The preservation of the MSGLs and the lack of ice-flow transverse landforms indicate rapid ice retreat from this region of the outer-shelf. Trough-parallel sinuous esker-like ridges of sediment are also identified. These were probably formed by the sedimentary infilling of ice-walled subglacial meltwater conduits during deglaciation. This interpretation requires considerable volumes of meltwater and sediment to have been transported within subglacial channels beneath the M'Clure Strait ice

  14. Vitamin A and E profiles as biomarkers of PCB exposure in beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) from the western Canadian Arctic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Highlights: •We examine the influence of biology, ecology and contaminant exposure on vitamin A and E profiles in Arctic beluga whales. •PCBs altered vitamin profiles after accounting for sex, age, condition and feeding ecology. •We propose a toxicity reference value for the disruption of vitamin A and E profiles in beluga of 1.6 mg/kg PCBs. •The use of vitamins as biomarkers of contaminant effects is contingent upon an understanding of wildlife biology. -- Abstract: We evaluated the utility of vitamin A and E profiles as biomarkers of contaminant exposure in beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas; n = 66) harvested by the Inuvialuit in the Beaufort Sea. Blubber was an important repository for these vitamins, accounting for 76.8 ± 2.6% of the total body store of vitamin A, and 98.5 ± 0.4% of total vitamin E. While the free alcohol form of vitamin A (retinol) appeared highly regulated, the vitamin A esters were influenced by several biological factors including age, body condition and length. Vitamin E concentrations in liver and blubber were related to age, condition, length and feeding ecology, as described δ15N and δ13C. Despite the influence of these factors, collective results from univariate statistics, best fit multiple regressions, and principal component analysis (PCA) identified polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) as important determinants of vitamin concentrations and profiles in beluga tissues. Blubber PCB concentrations best explained variation of the first principal component in a PCA of hepatic vitamins (r2 = 0.13, p = 0.014), and regression models found that vitamin A concentrations were negatively correlated with PCB levels in liver (esters: r2 = 0.19, p = 0.001), but positively in plasma (retinol: r2 = 0.20, p = 0.06) and blubber (retinol: r2 = 0.22, p = 0.001, esters: r2 = 0.43, p < 0.001). Our analyses provide a basis to propose an integrated toxicity reference value for disruption of vitamin A and E profiles in beluga of 1.6 mg/kg lw PCBs

  15. Vitamin A and E profiles as biomarkers of PCB exposure in beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) from the western Canadian Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Desforges, Jean-Pierre W. [University of Victoria, School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, 3800 Finnerty Road, Victoria, BC, Canada V8P 5C2 (Canada); Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Institute of Ocean Sciences, 9860 West Saanich Road, P.O. Box 6000, Sidney, BC, Canada V8L 4B2 (Canada); Ross, Peter S., E-mail: peter.s.ross@dfo-mpo.gc.ca [University of Victoria, School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, 3800 Finnerty Road, Victoria, BC, Canada V8P 5C2 (Canada); Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Institute of Ocean Sciences, 9860 West Saanich Road, P.O. Box 6000, Sidney, BC, Canada V8L 4B2 (Canada); Dangerfield, Neil [Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Institute of Ocean Sciences, 9860 West Saanich Road, P.O. Box 6000, Sidney, BC, Canada V8L 4B2 (Canada); Palace, Vince P. [Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Freshwater Institute, 501 University Crescent, Winnipeg, MB, Canada R3T 2N6 (Canada); Whiticar, Michael [University of Victoria, School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, 3800 Finnerty Road, Victoria, BC, Canada V8P 5C2 (Canada); Loseto, Lisa L. [Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Freshwater Institute, 501 University Crescent, Winnipeg, MB, Canada R3T 2N6 (Canada)

    2013-10-15

    Highlights: •We examine the influence of biology, ecology and contaminant exposure on vitamin A and E profiles in Arctic beluga whales. •PCBs altered vitamin profiles after accounting for sex, age, condition and feeding ecology. •We propose a toxicity reference value for the disruption of vitamin A and E profiles in beluga of 1.6 mg/kg PCBs. •The use of vitamins as biomarkers of contaminant effects is contingent upon an understanding of wildlife biology. -- Abstract: We evaluated the utility of vitamin A and E profiles as biomarkers of contaminant exposure in beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas; n = 66) harvested by the Inuvialuit in the Beaufort Sea. Blubber was an important repository for these vitamins, accounting for 76.8 ± 2.6% of the total body store of vitamin A, and 98.5 ± 0.4% of total vitamin E. While the free alcohol form of vitamin A (retinol) appeared highly regulated, the vitamin A esters were influenced by several biological factors including age, body condition and length. Vitamin E concentrations in liver and blubber were related to age, condition, length and feeding ecology, as described δ{sup 15}N and δ{sup 13}C. Despite the influence of these factors, collective results from univariate statistics, best fit multiple regressions, and principal component analysis (PCA) identified polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) as important determinants of vitamin concentrations and profiles in beluga tissues. Blubber PCB concentrations best explained variation of the first principal component in a PCA of hepatic vitamins (r{sup 2} = 0.13, p = 0.014), and regression models found that vitamin A concentrations were negatively correlated with PCB levels in liver (esters: r{sup 2} = 0.19, p = 0.001), but positively in plasma (retinol: r{sup 2} = 0.20, p = 0.06) and blubber (retinol: r{sup 2} = 0.22, p = 0.001, esters: r{sup 2} = 0.43, p < 0.001). Our analyses provide a basis to propose an integrated toxicity reference value for disruption of vitamin A and

  16. Single-particle characterization of the High Arctic summertime aerosol

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Sierau

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Single-particle mass spectrometric measurements were carried out in the High Arctic north of 80° during summer 2008. The campaign took place onboard the icebreaker \\textit{Oden} and was part of the Arctic Summer Cloud Ocean Study (ASCOS. The instrument deployed was an Aerosol Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometer (ATOFMS that provides information on the chemical composition of individual particles and their mixing state in real-time. Aerosols were sampled in the marine boundary layer at stations in the open ocean, in the marginal ice zone, and in the pack ice region. The largest fraction of particles detected for subsequent analysis in the size range of the ATOFMS between approximately 200 nm to 3000 nm in diameter showed mass spectrometric patterns indicating an internal mixing state and a biomass burning and/or biofuel source. The majority of these particles were connected to an air mass layer of elevated particle concentration mixed into the surface mixed layer from the upper part of the marine boundary layer. The second largest fraction was represented by sea salt particles. The chemical analysis of the over-ice sea salt aerosol revealed tracer compounds that reflect chemical aging of the particles during their long-range advection from the marginal ice zone, or open waters south thereof prior to detection at the ship. From our findings we conclude that long-range transport of particles is one source of aerosols in the High Arctic. To assess the importance of long-range particle sources for aerosol–cloud interactions over the inner Arctic in comparison to local and regional biogenic primary aerosol sources, the chemical composition of the detected particles was analyzed for indicators of marine biological origin. Only a~minor fraction showed chemical signatures of potentially ocean-derived primary particles of that kind. However, a chemical bias in the ATOFMS's detection capabilities observed during ASCOS might suggest a presence of a

  17. Intense photooxidative degradation of planktonic and bacterial lipids in sinking particles collected with sediment traps across the Canadian Beaufort Shelf (Arctic Ocean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J.-F. Rontani

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available The lipid content of seven samples of sinking particles collected with sediment traps moored at ~100 m depth in summer and fall across the Canadian Beaufort Shelf (Arctic Ocean was investigated. Our main goal was to quantify and characterize the biotic and abiotic degradation processes that acted on sinking material during these periods. Diatoms, which dominated the phytoplanktonic assemblage in every trap sample, appeared to be remarkably sensitive to Type II (i.e. involving singlet oxygen photodegradation processes in summer, but seemed to be relatively unaffected by biotic degradation at the same time. Hence, the relative recalcitrance of phytodetritus towards biodegradation processes during the Arctic midnight sun period was attributed to the strong photodegradation state of heterotrophic bacteria, which likely resulted from the efficient transfer of singlet oxygen from photodegraded phytoplanktonic cells to attached bacteria. In addition, the detection in trap samples of photoproducts specific to wax ester components found in herbivorous copepods demonstrated that zooplanktonic faecal material exported out of the euphotic zone in summer were as well affected by Type II photodegradation processes. By contrast, sinking particles collected during the autumn were not influenced by any light-driven stress. Further chemical analyses showed that photodegraded sinking particles contained an important amount of intact hydroperoxides, which could then induce a strong oxidative stress in underlying sediments.

  18. Remote Sensing of Arctic and Boreal Atmospheric Composition from a Highly Elliptical Orbit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nassar, Ray; McElroy, C. Tom; Walker, Kaley A.; McLinden, Chris; Sioris, Chris E.; Jones, Dylan B. A.; Martin, Randall V.; Rochon, Yves; Garand, Louis; Trischencko, Alexander P.

    2016-04-01

    The Polar Communications and Weather (PCW) mission is a proposed Canadian mission that aims to provide continuous meteorological observations and communications capacity over the Arctic and northern latitudes from a pair of satellites in a highly elliptical orbit (HEO) configuration. The Weather, Climate and Air quality (WCA) concept is a mission enhancement that completed a Phase A study through the Polar Highly Elliptical Orbit Science (PHEOS) program. The PHEOS-WCA instrument suite would consist of a high resolution Fourier Transform Spectrometer (FTS) operating in the mid-, near- and shortwave infrared and a UV-Visible grating Spectrometer (UVS), both with 2-dimensional imaging capability. These instruments would enable dense measurements of numerous quantities important for understanding weather (H2O and temperature profiles), climate (column-averaged CO2 and CH4) and air quality (tropospheric O3, CO, NO2, SO2, NH3, HCN, CH3OH, BrO, aerosols, ….) with a pixel size of 10×10 km2 or better and repeat time targeted at 2 hours or less. Our studies have demonstrated that HEO observations of CO2 offer major advantages over those from low earth orbit (LEO) for constraining CO2 surface sources and sinks in the Arctic and boreal regions, especially in the summer when there is the potential for the release of CO2 from permafrost thaw and boreal forest disturbances. This presentation will give an overview of the PHEOS-WCA mission concept, discuss its complementarity with upcoming international missions and provide an update on recent progress and challenges in moving forward.

  19. Paleo-environmental gateways in the eastern Canadian arctic - Recent isotope hydrology and diatom oxygen isotopes from Nettilling Lake, Baffin Island, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapligin, B.; Narancic, B.; Meyer, H.; Pienitz, R.

    2016-09-01

    Nettilling Lake is located on Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada between the areas of past warming (Canadian High Arctic to the North) and climatic stability (Northern Quebec and Labrador region to the South). Despite being the largest lake in the Nunavut region with a postglacial marine to lacustrine transition history only a few paleo-environmental investigations were completed in this area. The oxygen isotope composition of diatoms (δ18Odiatom) can provide valuable insights into paleo-environmental conditions. Here, the recent (isotope) hydrology and hydrochemical data from the lake are presented to facilitate the interpretation of a δ18Odiatom record from an 82 cm sediment core (Ni-2B). The well-mixed lake (δ18Owater = -17.4‰) is influenced by a heavier (less negative) isotope composition (-18.80‰) from Amadjuak River draining Amadjuak Lake to the South and water of lighter (more negative) isotopic composition (-16.4‰) from the Isurtuq River originating from Penny Ice Cap in the North-East. From the δ18Owater and δ18Odiatom of the topmost sample of core Ni-2B a Δ18Osilica-water of 1000 ln α(silica-water) = 40.2‰ for sub-recent diatoms of Nettilling Lake was calculated matching the known water-silica fractionation for fossil sediments well and thereby showing the general applicability of this proxy for paleo-reconstructions in this region. Extremely large δ18Odiatom variations in the core of more than 13‰ are mainly induced by changes in the isotopic composition of the lake water due to a shift from glaciomarine (δ18Odiatom = +34.6‰) through brackish (+23.4 to +27.2‰) towards lacustrine (+21.5‰) conditions (transition zones glaciomarine to brackish at 69 cm/7300 yr cal. BP and brackish to lacustrine at 35 cm/6000 yr cal. BP) associated with a shift in the degree of salinity. Our study provides the first evidence that paleo-salinity can be reconstructed by δ18Odiatom. Additionally, for the lacustrine section it could be demonstrated that

  20. Role of dispersants of oil on copepods in high arctic areas

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gustavson, Kim; Nørregaard, Rasmus Dyrmose; Møller, Eva Friis;

    2013-01-01

    The purpose of the project is to increase the knowledge on the effects of using dispersants on oil spills in high arctic areas: more precisely, to investigate accumulation in and effects on high arctic copepods. Such knowledge is crucial for performing a robust net environmental benefit analysis...... prior to making a decision as to whether or not dispersant may be allowed as an operational oil spill response in high arctic sea areas....

  1. Mapping pan-Arctic methane emissions at high spatial resolution using an adjoint atmospheric transport and inversion method and process-based wetland and lake biogeochemical models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Z. Tan

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Understanding methane emissions from the Arctic, a fast warming carbon reservoir, is important for projecting changes in the global methane cycle under future climate scenarios. Here we optimize Arctic methane emissions with a nested-grid high-resolution inverse model by assimilating both high-precision surface measurements and column-average SCIAMACHY satellite retrievals of methane mole fraction. For the first time, methane emissions from lakes are integrated into an atmospheric transport and inversion estimate, together with prior wetland emissions estimated by six different biogeochemical models. We find that, the global methane emissions during July 2004–June 2005 ranged from 496.4 to 511.5 Tg yr−1, with wetland methane emissions ranging from 130.0 to 203.3 Tg yr−1. The Arctic methane emissions during July 2004–June 2005 were in the range of 14.6–30.4 Tg yr−1, with wetland and lake emissions ranging from 8.8 to 20.4 Tg yr−1 and from 5.4 to 7.9 Tg yr−1 respectively. Canadian and Siberian lakes contributed most of the estimated lake emissions. Due to insufficient measurements in the region, Arctic methane emissions are less constrained in northern Russia than in Alaska, northern Canada and Scandinavia. Comparison of different inversions indicates that the distribution of global and Arctic methane emissions is sensitive to prior wetland emissions. Evaluation with independent datasets shows that the global and Arctic inversions improve estimates of methane mixing ratios in boundary layer and free troposphere. The high-resolution inversions provide more details about the spatial distribution of methane emissions in the Arctic.

  2. Enhanced sea-ice export from the Arctic to the GIN seas during the Younger Dryas: A "Canadian" source from radiogenic isotope signatures

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hillaire-Marcel, C.; Maccali, J.; Not, C.; Poirier, A.

    2012-04-01

    The Younger Dryas (YD) cooling event and the related slowing of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC) have been linked to a large array of processes. The most widely supported causal mechanism involves an influx of freshwater into the North Atlantic Ocean linked to a partial drainage of glacial Lake Agassiz. Recently, a northward drainage route, through the Mackenzie River outlet into the Arctic Ocean, has been suggested from land-based studies [Murton et al., Nature 464, 740-743]. Sedimentological and geochemical analysis of cores raised from Lomonosov Ridge and the Fram Strait area, yield relatively robust evidence for enhanced ice-rafting deposition -IRD- (with a 5-fold increase -) during the critical interval. At Lomonosov, the corresponding sedimentary layer (from ca. 13 to 12 ka) is marked by a pulse of detrital carbonates in the silt to sand fractions, with approximately equal amounts of calcite and dolomite, pointing towards an Arctic Canadian sediment source area [Not & Hillaire-Marcel, Nature Communication, Jan. 31, 2012]. The layer also depicts a 5 fold increase 230Th-excess, which we link to an enhanced flux of scavenging particles. At both sites, the geochemical signatures of the YD-layer, based on elemental (Zr/Al) and isotopic (Sr, Nd and Pb) data on bulk sediments and residues ensuing from the removal of exchangeable fractions (Zr/Al, Nd, Pb, Sr), are used to identify detrital sediment source areas. Whereas three major source areas variably contributed to IRD during the MIS 3-Present interval (i.e., the Russian, Canadian and Greenland margins), the YD interval singles out by strongelemental and isotopic excursions, notably a peak in radiogenic Sr, indicating prominent supplies from the Canadian end-member. This suggests enhanced sea-ice production and drifting along the BeaufordGyre, then the Trans-Polar Drift. A major drainage event along the Mackenzie outlet area, as proposed in the above reference,would be a suitable trigger for

  3. A Pan-Arctic Assessment of High-Latitude Lake Change ~25 Years Apart

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheng, Y.; Smith, L. C.; Li, J.; Lyons, E. A.; Wang, J.

    2011-12-01

    The Arctic and Sub-Arctic regions are the home to the world's largest quantity of terrestrial lakes. These lakes play a preeminent role in the global water cycle and balance, are sensitive to global warming, and are vital for human and animal water supply. However, they are poorly observed, and a uniform lake inventory is unavailable at the pan-Arctic scale. Though there have been studies of Arctic lake dynamics at local scales, the general picture of Arctic lake change stays unclear. A systematic regional-scale assessment of Arctic lake change in the past ~30 years is crucial for us to address "How have Arctic lakes responded to global warming?" The presentation reports a systematic effort of high-latitude (45N and north) lake inventory using recently available high-resolution satellite imagery. Since Arctic lakes are abundant in small-size classes and their seasonality varies from region to region, pan-Arctic lake mapping requires the use of thousands of cloud-free Landsat images acquired in lake-stable seasons. Nearly eight million lakes have been mapped in various landscapes of the pan-Arctic using automated lake identification algorithms with high replicability. Lake-abundant regions are selected using a systematic sampling strategy to detect decadal lake change using the mid-1970s and circa-2000 Landsat imagery. Spatial patterns of the observed lake dynamics are analyzed at regional scales and the relationship between lake abundance and size distribution is investigated.

  4. Canadian high-level radioactive waste management system issues

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In Canada responsibility for the management of radioactive wastes rests with the producer of those wastes. This fundamental principle applies to such diverse wastes as uranium mine and mill tailings, low-level wastes from universities and hospitals, wastes produced at nuclear research establishments, and wastes produced at nuclear generating stations. The federal government has accepted responsibility for historical wastes for which the original producer can no longer be held accountable. Management of radioactive wastes is subject to the regulatory control of the Atomic Energy Control Board, the federal agency responsible for regulating the nuclear industry. In this paper the authors summarize the current situation concerning the management of high level (used nuclear fuel) wastes. In 1981 the two governments also announced that selection of a disposal site would not proceed, and responsibility for site selection and operation would not be assigned until the Concept for used fuel disposal had been reviewed and assessed. Thus the concept assessment is generic rather than site specific. The Concept that has been developed has been designed to conform with safety and performance criteria established by the Atomic Energy Control Board. It is based on burial deep in plutonic rock of the Canadian Shield, using a multi-barrier approach with a series of engineered and natural barriers: these include the waste form, container, buffer and backfill, and the host rock

  5. Cold weather challenges during construction of a rockfill dam with a polypropylene liner in the Canadian Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grapel, C.K.; Valeriote, M.A. [EBA Engineering Consultants Ltd., Edmonton, AB (Canada); Cross, F. [Layfield Environmental Systems Ltd., Edmonton, AB (Canada)

    2004-09-01

    The development of an open mine pit at the Misery site of the Ekati Diamond Mine in the Northwest Territories required the construction of several water retention dams for surface water management. One dam was needed to retain runoff water from a waste rock storage pile and to ensure that discharge from the site met the requirements of the water licence that governs mining operations at Ekati. This paper described the exceptional challenges of constructing a dam during Arctic winter conditions, particularly when permafrost is used for all or part of the impervious elements of the dam. A 15 metre high rock fill dam with a composite liner system and a frozen key trench was constructed during the winter of 2001-2002. The dam was designed to be a zero discharge mine water runoff collection dam. It was designed to incorporate permafrost to supplement the composite geosynthetic liners in the retention of water. Therefore, thermal considerations were an important component of the design process. The composite liner system consisted of a polypropylene primary liner, geosynthetic clay liner and a downstream and upstream cushion. Polypropylene was chosen because of its flexibility in extremely cold temperatures. However, cracking did occur in the liner during the first phase of placement when temperatures were below -40 degrees C. Construction was halted to address the issue, and was resumed when field observations revealed that the liner placement would not result in additional cracking. The dam has impounded water to elevations above the lower liner segment each year since completion without any observed seepage at the toe of the dam. 12 figs.

  6. Paleoclimate records at high latitude in Arctic during the Paleogene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salpin, Marie; Schnyder, Johann; Baudin, François; Suan, Guillaume; Labrousse, Loïc; Popescu, Speranta; Suc, Jean-Pierre

    2015-04-01

    Paleoclimate records at high latitude in Arctic during the Paleogene SALPIN Marie1,2, SCHNYDER Johann1,2, BAUDIN François1,2, SUAN Guillaume3, LABROUSSE Loïc1,2, POPESCU Speranta4, SUC Jean-Pierre1,4 1: Sorbonne Universités, UPMC Univ Paris 06, UMR 7193, Institut des Sciences de la Terre Paris (iSTeP), F 75005, Paris, France 2: CNRS, UMR 7193, Institut des Sciences de la Terre Paris (iSTeP), F 75005 Paris, France 3: UCB Lyon 1, UMR 5276, LGLTPE, 69622 Villeurbanne Cedex, France 4: GEOBIOSTRATDATA.CONSULTING, 385 Route du Mas Rillier 69140 Rillieux la Pape, France The Paleogene is a period of important variations of the Earth climate system either in warming or cooling. The climatic optima of the Paleogene have been recognized both in continental and marine environment. This study focus on high latitudes of the northern hemisphere, in the Arctic Basin. The basin has had an influence on the Cenozoic global climate change according to its polar position. Is there a specific behaviour of the Arctic Basin with respect to global climatic stimuli? Are there possible mechanisms of coupling/decoupling of its dynamics with respect to the global ocean? To answer these questions a unique collection of sedimentary series of Paleogene age interval has been assembled from the Laurentian margin in Northern Yukon (Canada) and from the Siberian margin (New Siberian Islands). Selected continental successions of Paleocene-Eocene age were used to study the response of the Arctic system to known global events, e.g. the climatic optima of the Paleogene (the so-called PETM, ETM2 or the Azolla events). Two sections of Paleocene-Eocene age were sampled near the Mackenzie delta, the so-called Coal Mine (CoMi) and Caribou Hills (CaH) sections. The aim of the study is to precise the climatic fluctuations and to characterise the source rock potential of the basin, eventually linked to the warming events. This study is based on data of multi-proxy analyses: mineralogy on bulk and clay

  7. High Arctic paleoenvironmental and Paleoclimatic changes in the Mid-Cretaceous

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrle, Jens; Schröder-Adams, Claudia; Selby, David; Du Vivier, Alice; Flögel, Sascha; McAnena, Alison; Davis, William; Pugh, Adam; Galloway, Jennifer; Hofmann, Peter; Wagner, Thomas

    2014-05-01

    Although major progress in Cretaceous (145-66 Ma) paleoclimate and paleoceanography has been made during the last decades (e.g., Hay, 2008, 2011; Föllmi, 2012 and references therein), our knowledge of high latitudinal environmental change remains largely unknown compared to low- and mid-latitude marine and terrestrial environments. Drilling the Arctic Ocean remains challenging and expensive, whereas the Sverdrup Basin provides excellent exposures on land. To fully understand the climate and paleoceanographic dynamics of the warm, equable greenhouse world of the Cretaceous Period it is important to determine polar paleotemperatures and to study paleoceanographic changes in a well-established and continuous bio- and chemostratigraphic context. Exceptional exposures of Cretaceous sediments on the central to southern part of Axel Heiberg Island at a Cretaceous paleolatitude of about 71°N (Tarduno et al., 1998) provide a unique window on the Cretaceous Arctic paleoenvironment and climate history (Schröder-Adams et al., 2014). Here we present high-resolution records combining sedimentological studies, U-Pb zircon geochronology, marine organic carbon isotopes and initial 187Os/188Os data, TEX86-derived sea-surface temperatures (SST) and climate modelling, that constrain the timing and magnitude of major Oceanic Anoxic Events (OAEs) and climate events constructed from a ~1.8 km sedimentary succession exposed on Axel Heiberg and Ellef Ringnens islands in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. The first high latitude application of initial 187Os/188Os data are agreeable with global profiles (Du Vivier et al., 2014) indicating the widespread magmatic pulse of the Caribbean Large Igneous Province (LIP) at the onset of OAE2 but also record the emplacement of local High Arctic LIP prior to the OAE2 in the Sverdrup Basin. Initial SST data suggest a slightly lower meridional temperature gradient during the Middle/Late Albian compared to present and a similar to the present one during

  8. Mapping Snowfields in the High Arctic by UAV

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klump, Jens; Leya, Thomas; Fuhr, Günter

    2014-05-01

    Plant habitats are often influenced by small scale factors of substrate composition, topography and water sources that influence the availability of water and nutrients. In our lomg-term study to investigate the the distribution and dispersal strategies as well as the life cycle of psychrophilic algae (snow algae) it was necessary to get a better understanding of the structure of the snowfields where these algae live. Previous attempts to map snowfields using tethered platforms, such as kites or balloons, had proven to be difficult due to the very unstable weather conditions in the extreme environment of the High Arctic. The inherent problems of tethered platforms could be overcome with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV). During the August 2013 field campaign on the Svalbard archipelago we used an Asctec Falcon 8 UAV to map snowfields and glacier surfaces in the visible and thermal infra-red spectrum. The georeferenced images were assembled into photo mosaic maps which were also converted into digital elevation models. The photo mosaic maps and digital elevation models gave new insights into small-scale factors that influence the physical and chemical conditions of the snow algae habitat. This presentation gives an overview of our results from the use of UAV for the mapping of snowfields in the High Arctic and discusses the risks and limitations of UAV in this extreme environment.

  9. Baseline monitoring of the western Arctic Ocean estimates 20% of Canadian basin surface waters are undersaturated with respect to aragonite.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lisa L Robbins

    Full Text Available Marine surface waters are being acidified due to uptake of anthropogenic carbon dioxide, resulting in surface ocean areas of undersaturation with respect to carbonate minerals, including aragonite. In the Arctic Ocean, acidification is expected to occur at an accelerated rate with respect to the global oceans, but a paucity of baseline data has limited our understanding of the extent of Arctic undersaturation and of regional variations in rates and causes. The lack of data has also hindered refinement of models aimed at projecting future trends of ocean acidification. Here, based on more than 34,000 data records collected in 2010 and 2011, we establish a baseline of inorganic carbon data (pH, total alkalinity, dissolved inorganic carbon, partial pressure of carbon dioxide, and aragonite saturation index for the western Arctic Ocean. This data set documents aragonite undersaturation in ≈ 20% of the surface waters of the combined Canada and Makarov basins, an area characterized by recent acceleration of sea ice loss. Conservative tracer studies using stable oxygen isotopic data from 307 sites show that while the entire surface of this area receives abundant freshwater from meteoric sources, freshwater from sea ice melt is most closely linked to the areas of carbonate mineral undersaturation. These data link the Arctic Ocean's largest area of aragonite undersaturation to sea ice melt and atmospheric CO2 absorption in areas of low buffering capacity. Some relatively supersaturated areas can be linked to localized biological activity. Collectively, these observations can be used to project trends of ocean acidification in higher latitude marine surface waters where inorganic carbon chemistry is largely influenced by sea ice meltwater.

  10. Light treatment improves sleep quality and negative affectiveness in high arctic residents during winter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Michel A; Love, Ryan J; Hawton, Andrea; Brett, Kaighley; McCreary, Donald R; Arendt, Josephine

    2015-01-01

    The seasonal extremes of photoperiod in the high Arctic place particular strain on the human circadian system, which leads to trouble sleeping and increased feelings of negative affect in the winter months. To qualify for our study, potential participants had to have been at Canadian Forces Station (CFS) Alert (82° 30' 00″ N) for at least 2 weeks. Subjects filled out questionnaires regarding sleep difficulty, psychological well-being and mood and wore Actigraphs to obtain objective sleep data. Saliva was collected at regular intervals on two occasions, 2 weeks apart, to measure melatonin and assess melatonin onset. Individuals with a melatonin rhythm that was in disaccord with their sleep schedule were given individualized daily light treatment interventions based on their pretreatment salivary melatonin profile. The light treatment prescribed to seven of the twelve subjects was effective in improving sleep quality both subjectively, based on questionnaire results, and objectively, based on the actigraphic data. The treatment also caused a significant reduction in negative affect among the participants. Since the treatment is noninvasive and has minimal associated side effects, our results support the use of the light visors at CFS Alert and other northern outposts during the winter for individuals who are experiencing sleep difficulty or low mood. PMID:25580574

  11. Thermal Infrared Sky Background for a High-Arctic Mountain Observatory

    CERN Document Server

    Steinbring, Eric

    2016-01-01

    Nighttime zenith sky spectral brightness in the 3.3 to 20 micron wavelength region is reported for an observatory site nearby Eureka, on Ellesmere Island in the Canadian High Arctic. Measurements derive from an automated Fourier-transform spectrograph which operated continuously there over three consecutive winters. During that time the median through the most transparent portion of the Q window was 460 Jy/square-arcsec, falling below 32 Jy/square-arcsec in N band, and to sub-Jansky levels by M and shortwards; reaching only 36 mJy/square-arcsec within L. Nearly six decades of twice-daily balloonsonde launches from Eureka, together with contemporaneous meteorological data plus a simple model allows characterization of background stability and extrapolation into K band. This suggests the study location has dark skies across the whole thermal infrared spectrum, typically sub-200 micro-Jy/square-arcsec at 2.4 microns. That background is comparable to South Pole, and more than an order of magnitude less than estim...

  12. Idiosyncratic responses of high Arctic plants to changing snow regimes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rumpf, Sabine B; Semenchuk, Philipp R; Dullinger, Stefan; Cooper, Elisabeth J

    2014-01-01

    The Arctic is one of the ecosystems most affected by climate change; in particular, winter temperatures and precipitation are predicted to increase with consequent changes to snow cover depth and duration. Whether the snow-free period will be shortened or prolonged depends on the extent and temporal patterns of the temperature and precipitation rise; resulting changes will likely affect plant growth with cascading effects throughout the ecosystem. We experimentally manipulated snow regimes using snow fences and shoveling and assessed aboveground size of eight common high arctic plant species weekly throughout the summer. We demonstrated that plant growth responded to snow regime, and that air temperature sum during the snow free period was the best predictor for plant size. The majority of our studied species showed periodic growth; increases in plant size stopped after certain cumulative temperatures were obtained. Plants in early snow-free treatments without additional spring warming were smaller than controls. Response to deeper snow with later melt-out varied between species and categorizing responses by growth forms or habitat associations did not reveal generic trends. We therefore stress the importance of examining responses at the species level, since generalized predictions of aboveground growth responses to changing snow regimes cannot be made.

  13. Idiosyncratic responses of high Arctic plants to changing snow regimes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabine B Rumpf

    Full Text Available The Arctic is one of the ecosystems most affected by climate change; in particular, winter temperatures and precipitation are predicted to increase with consequent changes to snow cover depth and duration. Whether the snow-free period will be shortened or prolonged depends on the extent and temporal patterns of the temperature and precipitation rise; resulting changes will likely affect plant growth with cascading effects throughout the ecosystem. We experimentally manipulated snow regimes using snow fences and shoveling and assessed aboveground size of eight common high arctic plant species weekly throughout the summer. We demonstrated that plant growth responded to snow regime, and that air temperature sum during the snow free period was the best predictor for plant size. The majority of our studied species showed periodic growth; increases in plant size stopped after certain cumulative temperatures were obtained. Plants in early snow-free treatments without additional spring warming were smaller than controls. Response to deeper snow with later melt-out varied between species and categorizing responses by growth forms or habitat associations did not reveal generic trends. We therefore stress the importance of examining responses at the species level, since generalized predictions of aboveground growth responses to changing snow regimes cannot be made.

  14. Physical properties of High Arctic tropospheric particles during winter

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Bourdages

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available A climatology of particle properties in the wintertime High Arctic troposphere is constructed using measurements from a lidar and cloud radar located at Eureka, Nunavut Territory (80° N, 86° W. Four different particle groupings are considered: aerosols, mixed-phase clouds, ice clouds and boundary-layer ice crystals. Two-dimensional histograms of occurrence probabilities against depolarization and radar/lidar colour ratio, as well as their vertical distributions, are presented. The largest ice crystals originate from mixed-phase clouds, whereas the smallest are topographic blowing snow residuals in the boundary layer. Ice cloud crystals have depolarization and size decreasing with height. The depolarization trend is associated with the large ice crystal sub-population. Small crystals depolarize more than large ones in ice clouds at a given altitude, and show constant modal depolarization with height. Ice clouds in the mid-troposphere are sometimes observed to precipitate to the ground. Water clouds are constrained to the lower troposphere and are associated with the surface inversion layer depth. Aerosols are most abundant near the ground and are frequently mixed with the other particle types. The data are used to construct a classification chart for particle scattering in wintertime Arctic conditions.

  15. Microbial communities in a High Arctic polar desert landscape

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clare M McCann

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available The High Arctic is dominated by polar desert habitats whose microbial communities are poorly understood. In this study, we used next generation sequencing to describe the α- and β-diversity of polar desert soils from the Kongsfjorden region of Svalbard. Ten phyla consistently dominated the soils and accounted for 95 % of all sequences, with Proteobacteria, Actinobacteria and Chloroflexi being the dominant lineages. In contrast to previous investigations of Arctic soils, Acidobacterial relative abundances were low as were the Archaea throughout the Kongsfjorden polar desert landscape. Lower Acidobacterial abundances were attributed to the circumneutral soil pH in this region which has resulted from the weathering of the underlying carbonate geology. In addition, we correlated previously measured geochemical variables to determine potential controls on the communities. Soil phosphorus, pH, nitrogen and calcium significantly correlated with β-diversity indicating a landscape scale lithological control of soil nutrients which in turn influenced community composition. In addition, soil phosphorus and pH significantly correlated with α- diversity, specifically the Shannon diversity and Chao 1 richness indices.

  16. Development and validation of a one-dimensional snow-ice algae model against observations in Resolute Passage, Canadian Arctic Archipelago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pogson, L.; Tremblay, B.; Lavoie, D.; Michel, C.; Vancoppenolle, M.

    2011-04-01

    Ice algae are an important component of the carbon cycle in the Arctic. We investigate the dynamics of an ice algae bloom by coupling an ice algae-nutrient model with a multilayer σ coordinate thermodynamic sea ice model. The model is tested with the simulation of an algal bloom at the base of first-year ice over the spring. Model output is compared with data from Barrow Strait in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. Snow cover, through its influence on ice melt, is a dominant factor controlling the decline of the bloom in the model, a finding that supports past studies. The results show that under a higher snow cover (20 cm), biomass in the early stages of the algal bloom is less than expected from the observed data. This discrepancy is due to the severely light-limited algal growth, despite the close match between simulated and observed under-ice photosynthetically active radiation. This result raises issues of how photosynthetic parameters as well as radiative transfer is represented in one-dimensional ice models. This study also shows that for higher algal concentrations, when biomass is split over multiple layers rather than concentrated in one layer at the ice base, there is a reduction in algae accumulation, a result of self shading. In addition, experiments show a sensitivity of total biomass to the oceanic heat flux and ice layer thickness, both of which affect biomass loss at the ice base. Being able to accurately model physical conditions is essential before the seasonal dynamics of ice algae can be accurately modeled, and some recommendations for improvement are discussed.

  17. Morphological and morphometric differentiation of dorsal-spined first stage larvae of lungworms (Nematoda: Protostrongylidae infecting muskoxen (Ovibos moschatus in the central Canadian Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pratap Kafle

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Umingmakstrongylus pallikuukensis and Varestrongylus eleguneniensis are the two most common protostrongylid nematodes infecting muskoxen in the North American Arctic and Subarctic. First stage larvae (L1 of these lungworms have considerable morphological similarity that makes their differential diagnosis very difficult. Using light microscopy, we studied in detail the L1 of these two species and identified the key differences in morphological and morphometric attributes. Thirty L1 of each species from naturally infected muskox were heat-killed and then assessed for morphological and morphometric features that could be used for species-level differentiation. Key differentiating features include: length and morphology of the tail extension, curvature of the body, ventral post-anal transverse cuticular striations, and total body length. A laboratory guide for differentiation of L1 based on these species-specific characters was prepared and used by an experienced observer to identify an additional 35 L1 extracted from a different set of fecal samples from free-ranging muskoxen with mixed infections. The identities of these L1 were confirmed by sequence analysis of the ITS-2 region of the nuclear ribosomal DNA. Accuracy of morphological identification was 100 percent, reflecting the reliability of the proposed guide for differentiation. Using the guide, three minimally trained lab assistants each fixed and accurately identified 10 of 10 randomly selected L1. Ability to morphologically differentiate these facilitates the monitoring of overlapping range expansion of both parasites in the Canadian Arctic. Studies enabling species-level parasite identification are also critical for defining biodiversity, detecting mixed infections, and understanding host–parasite interactions. Morphological identification is a simple, reliable and cost-effective alternative to labor and equipment intensive molecular methods and can easily be performed in low resource

  18. Extensive sampling of polar bears (Ursus maritimus) in the Northwest Passage (Canadian Arctic Archipelago) reveals population differentiation across multiple spatial and temporal scales.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campagna, Leonardo; Van Coeverden de Groot, Peter J; Saunders, Brenda L; Atkinson, Stephen N; Weber, Diana S; Dyck, Markus G; Boag, Peter T; Lougheed, Stephen C

    2013-09-01

    As global warming accelerates the melting of Arctic sea ice, polar bears (Ursus maritimus) must adapt to a rapidly changing landscape. This process will necessarily alter the species distribution together with population dynamics and structure. Detailed knowledge of these changes is crucial to delineating conservation priorities. Here, we sampled 361 polar bears from across the center of the Canadian Arctic Archipelago spanning the Gulf of Boothia (GB) and M'Clintock Channel (MC). We use DNA microsatellites and mitochondrial control region sequences to quantify genetic differentiation, estimate gene flow, and infer population history. Two populations, roughly coincident with GB and MC, are significantly differentiated at both nuclear (F ST = 0.01) and mitochondrial (ΦST = 0.47; F ST = 0.29) loci, allowing Bayesian clustering analyses to assign individuals to either group. Our data imply that the causes of the mitochondrial and nuclear genetic patterns differ. Analysis of mtDNA reveals the matrilineal structure dates at least to the Holocene, and is common to individuals throughout the species' range. These mtDNA differences probably reflect both genetic drift and historical colonization dynamics. In contrast, the differentiation inferred from microsatellites is only on the scale of hundreds of years, possibly reflecting contemporary impediments to gene flow. Taken together, our data suggest that gene flow is insufficient to homogenize the GB and MC populations and support the designation of GB and MC as separate polar bear conservation units. Our study also provide a striking example of how nuclear DNA and mtDNA capture different aspects of a species demographic history. PMID:24102001

  19. Revisiting factors controlling methane emissions from high-Arctic tundra

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Mastepanov

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The northern latitudes are experiencing disproportionate warming relative to the mid-latitudes, and there is growing concern about feedbacks between this warming and methane production and release from high-latitude soils. Studies of methane emissions carried out in the Arctic, particularly those with measurements made outside the growing season, are underrepresented in the literature. Here we present results of 5 yr (2006–2010 of automatic chamber measurements at a high-Arctic location in Zackenberg, NE Greenland, covering both the growing seasons and two months of the following freeze-in periods. The measurements show clear seasonal dynamics in methane emission. The start of the growing season and the increase in CH4 fluxes were strongly related to the date of snowmelt. Within each particular growing season, CH4 fluxes were highly correlated with the soil temperature (R2 > 0.75, which is probably explained by high seasonality of both variables, and weakly correlated with the water table. The greatest variability in fluxes between the study years was observed during the first part of the growing season. Somewhat surprisingly, this variability could not be explained by commonly known factors controlling methane emission, i.e. temperature and water table position. Late in the growing season CH4 emissions were found to be very similar between the study years (except the extremely dry 2010 despite large differences in climatic factors (temperature and water table. Late-season bursts of CH4 coinciding with soil freezing in the autumn were observed during at least three years. The cumulative emission during the freeze-in CH4 bursts was comparable in size with the growing season emission for the year 2007, and about one third of the growing season emissions for the years 2009 and 2010. In all three cases the CH4 burst was accompanied by a corresponding episodic increase in CO2 emission, which can compose a significant contribution to the annual CO2

  20. Metabolic rate and thermal conductance of lemmings from high-arctic Canada and Siberia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klaassen, M.R.J.; Agrell, J.; Lindström, A.

    2002-01-01

    The arctic climate places high demands on the energy metabolism of its inhabitants. We measured resting (RMR) and basal metabolic rates (BMR), body temperatures, and dry and wet thermal conductances in summer morphs of the lemmings Dicrostonyx groenlandicus and Lemmus trimucronatus in arctic Canada,

  1. Sedimentary processes in High Arctic lakes (Cape Bounty, Melville Island, Canada): What do sediments really record?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Normandeau, Alexandre; Lamoureux, Scott; Lajeunesse, Patrick; Francus, Pierre

    2016-04-01

    Lacustrine sedimentary sequences can hold a substantial amount of information regarding paleoenvironments, hydroclimate variability and extreme events, providing critical insights into past climate change. The study of lacustrine sediments is often limited to the analysis of sediment cores from which past changes are inferred. However, studies have provided evidence that the accumulation of sediments in lacustrine basins and their distribution can be affected by a wide range of internal and external forcing mechanisms. It is therefore crucial to have a good knowledge of the factors controlling the transport and distribution of sediments in lakes prior to investigating paleoenvironmental archives. To address this knowledge gap, the Cape Bounty Arctic Watershed Observatory (CBAWO), located on southern Melville Island in the Canadian High Arctic, was initiated in 2003 as a long term monitoring site with the aim of understanding the controls over sediment transport within similar paired watersheds and lakes. The East and West lakes have been monitored each year since 2003 to document the role of hydro-climate variability on water column processes and sediment deposition. Moorings recording water electrical conductivity, temperature, density, dissolved oxygen and turbidity, as well as sediment traps were deployed during the active hydrological period (generally May-July). These data were analyzed in combination with hydrological and climatic data from the watersheds. Additionally, a high-resolution bathymetric and sub-bottom survey was completed in 2015 and allowed imaging the lake floor and sub-surface in great detail. This combination of process and lake morphological data are unique in the Arctic. The morphostratigraphic analysis reveals two highly disturbed lake floors, being widely affected by subaqueous mass movements that were triggered during the last 2000 years. Backscatter intensity maps and the presence of bedforms on each delta foresets indicate that

  2. The nature and fate of natural resins in the geosphere VI. Analysis of fossil resins from Axel Heiberg Island Canadian Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anderson, K.B. [Argonne National Lab., IL (United States)]|[Amoco Oil Co., Naperville, IL (United States); LePage, B.A. [Univ. of Alberta, Edmonton (Canada). Dept. of Biological Sciences

    1995-06-01

    Ambers are well known and abundant in terrestrial sediments all over the world; however, due largely to the absence of definite morphological characteristics, the precise botanical origin of most amber samples, are at best, often a matter of speculation. This has severely restricted the usefulness of amber in paleobotanical and paleoecological interpretations. The molecular composition and structural characteristics of fossil resins however, may preserve evidence of their botanical origin, which could be of great value in both geochemical, paleobotanical, and paleoenvironmental studies. The remains of a number of exceptionally well-preserved Taxodiaceae-dominated swamp-forest communities have been identified in the sediments of the middle Eocene (45 million years old) Buchanan Lake Formation of Axel Heiberg Island, Canadian Arctic Archipelago. The amber collected from these ancient in situ forests provides a unique opportunity to characterize these resins chemically and taxonomically. Resinite associated with Metasequoia, Pinus and Pseudolarix has been characterized using Pyrolysis-Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry. This method provides a direct analysis of the molecular structure and composition of the resin. In several cases, both bled resin and cone-resin samples have been characterized. The results of these analyses are presented and discussed. The implications of these results for the botanical origins of other ambers represented in the fossil record (including succinite) will also be discussed.

  3. Tectonic Map of the Ellesmerian and Eurekan deformation belts on Svalbard, North Greenland and the Queen Elizabeth Islands (Canadian Arctic)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piepjohn, Karsten; von Gosen, Werner; Tessensohn, Franz; Reinhardt, Lutz; McClelland, William C.; Dallmann, Winfried; Gaedicke, Christoph; Harrison, Christopher

    2016-04-01

    The tectonic map presented here shows the distribution of the major post-Ellesmerian and pre-Eurekan sedimentary basins, parts of the Caledonian Orogen, the Ellesmerian Fold-and-Thrust Belt, structures of the Cenozoic Eurekan deformation, and areas affected by the Eurekan overprint. The present continental margin of North America towards the Arctic Ocean between the Queen Elizabeth Islands and Northeast Greenland and the present west margin of the Barents Shelf are characterized by the Paleozoic Ellesmerian Fold-and-Thrust Belt, the Cenozoic Eurekan deformation, and, in parts, the Caledonian Orogen. In many areas, the structural trends of the Ellesmerian and Eurekan deformations are more or less parallel, and often, structures of the Ellesmerian Orogeny are affected or reactivated by the Eurekan deformation. While the Ellesmerian Fold-and-Thrust Belt is dominated by orthogonal compression and the formation of wide fold-and-thrust zones on Ellesmere Island, North Greenland and Spitsbergen, the Eurekan deformation is characterized by a complex network of regional fold-and-thrust belts (Spitsbergen, central Ellesmere Island), large distinct thrust zones (Ellesmere Island, North Greenland) and a great number of strike-slip faults (Spitsbergen, Ellesmere Island). The Ellesmerian Fold-and-Thrust Belt was most probably related to the approach and docking of the Pearya Terrane (northernmost part of Ellesmere Island) and Spitsbergen against the north margin of Laurasia (Ellesmere Island/North Greenland) in the earliest Carboniferous. The Eurekan deformation was related to plate tectonic movements during the final break-up of Laurasia and the opening of Labrador Sea/Baffin Bay west, the Eurasian Basin north, and the Norwegian/Greenland seas east of Greenland. The tectonic map presented here shows the German contribution to the Tectonic Map of the Arctic 1:5,000,000 (TeMAr) as part of the international project "Atlas of geological maps of Circumpolar Arctic at 1

  4. Controls on Weathering of Pyrrhotite in a Low-Sulfide, Granitic Mine-Waste Rock in the Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langman, J. B.; Holland, S.; Sinclair, S.; Blowes, D.

    2013-12-01

    Increased environmental risk is incurred with expansion of mineral extraction in the Arctic. A greater understanding of geochemical processes associated with hard-rock mining in this cold climate is needed to evaluate and mitigate these risks. A laboratory and in-situ experiment was conducted to examine mineral weathering and the generation of acid rock drainage in a low-sulfide, run-of-mine waste rock in an Arctic climate. Rock with different concentrations of sulfides (primarily pyrrhotite [Fe7S8] containing small amounts of Co and Ni) and carbonates were weathered in the laboratory and in-situ, large-scale test piles to examine leachate composition and mineral weathering. The relatively larger sulfide-containing rock produced sufficient acid to overcome carbonate buffering and produced a declining pH environment with concomitant release of SO4, Fe, Co, and Ni. Following carbonate consumption, aluminosilicate buffering stabilized the pH above 4 until a reduction in acid generation. Results from the laboratory experiment assisted in determining that after consumption of 1.6 percent of the total sulfide, the larger sulfide-concentration test pile likely is at an internal steady-state or maximal weathering rate after seven years of precipitation input and weathering that is controlled by an annual freeze-thaw cycle. Further weathering of the test pile should be driven by external factors of temperature and precipitation in this Arctic, semi-arid region instead of internal factors of wetting and non-equilibrium buffering. It is predicted that maximal weathering will continue until at least 20 percent of the total sulfide is consumed. Using the identified evolution of sulfide consumption in this Arctic climate, a variable rate factor can now be assessed for the possible early evolution and maximal weathering of larger scale waste-rock piles and seasonal differences because of changes in the volume of a waste-rock pile undergoing active weathering due to the freeze

  5. Ship emissions measurement in the Arctic by plume intercepts of the Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker Amundsen from the Polar 6 aircraft platform

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aliabadi, Amir A.; Thomas, Jennie L.; Herber, Andreas B.; Staebler, Ralf M.; Leaitch, W. Richard; Schulz, Hannes; Law, Kathy S.; Marelle, Louis; Burkart, Julia; Willis, Megan D.; Bozem, Heiko; Hoor, Peter M.; Köllner, Franziska; Schneider, Johannes; Levasseur, Maurice; Abbatt, Jonathan P. D.

    2016-06-01

    Decreasing sea ice and increasing marine navigability in northern latitudes have changed Arctic ship traffic patterns in recent years and are predicted to increase annual ship traffic in the Arctic in the future. Development of effective regulations to manage environmental impacts of shipping requires an understanding of ship emissions and atmospheric processing in the Arctic environment. As part of the summer 2014 NETCARE (Network on Climate and Aerosols) campaign, the plume dispersion and gas and particle emission factors of effluents originating from the Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker Amundsen operating near Resolute Bay, NU, Canada, were investigated. The Amundsen burned distillate fuel with 1.5 wt % sulfur. Emissions were studied via plume intercepts using the Polar 6 aircraft measurements, an analytical plume dispersion model, and using the FLEXPART-WRF Lagrangian particle dispersion model. The first plume intercept by the research aircraft was carried out on 19 July 2014 during the operation of the Amundsen in the open water. The second and third plume intercepts were carried out on 20 and 21 July 2014 when the Amundsen had reached the ice edge and operated under ice-breaking conditions. Typical of Arctic marine navigation, the engine load was low compared to cruising conditions for all of the plume intercepts. The measured species included mixing ratios of CO2, NOx, CO, SO2, particle number concentration (CN), refractory black carbon (rBC), and cloud condensation nuclei (CCN). The results were compared to similar experimental studies in mid-latitudes. Plume expansion rates (γ) were calculated using the analytical model and found to be γ = 0.75 ± 0.81, 0.93 ± 0.37, and 1.19 ± 0.39 for plumes 1, 2, and 3, respectively. These rates were smaller than prior studies conducted at mid-latitudes, likely due to polar boundary layer dynamics, including reduced turbulent mixing compared to mid-latitudes. All emission factors were in agreement with prior

  6. High-Latitude Ionospheric Imaging using Canadian High Arctic Ionospheric Network (CHAIN)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meziane, K.; Jayachandran, P. T.; Hamza, A. M.; MacDougall, J. W.

    2013-12-01

    Understanding the polar cap dynamics is a fundamental problem in solar-terrestrial physics; any breakthroughs would have to take into account the interactions that take place at the interfaces between the Solar Wind and the Magnetosphere and between the latter and the ionosphere, respectively. Over the past decade a significant number of ground-based GPS receivers and digital ionosondes have been deployed in the polar cap and auroral region. This deployment has allowed the harvest of much needed data, otherwise not available, which in turn helps understand the dynamics of the polar ionospheric regions. A technique, used consistently by researchers in the field, consists of inverting the Total Electron Content (TEC) along the ray path obtained from a system of GPS receivers. In the present study, a combination of tomography and ionosonde data from the CHAIN network is used to examine the dynamics of polar cap patches. First, the TEC derived from GPS receivers through tomographic reconstruction is directly compared with ionosonde data. The comparison includes periods of quite and disturbed geomagnetic activity. We then use the vertical density profiles derived from the CHAIN ionosondes as initial seeds for the reconstruction of the tomographic images of the polar cap regions. Precise electron density peaks obtained through the tomographic reconstruction fall within a range that is consistent with direct CHAIN measurements when certain conditions are met. An assessment of the performance of the resulting combination of GPS and ionosonde data is performed, and conclusions are presented.

  7. Investigating the design and application of a funnel and gate barrier for PCB remediation in the Canadian Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kalinovich, I.; Rowe, R.K. [Queen' s Univ., Kingston, ON (Canada). Dept. of Civil Engineering]|[Royal Military Coll. of Canada, Kingston, ON (Canada); Rutter, A.; Poland, J. [Queen' s Univ., Kingston, ON (Canada). Dept. of Environmental Engineering; McWatters, R. [Queen' s Univ., Kingston, ON (Canada)

    2004-07-01

    A long-term remediation plan is underway at a former military radar base at Resolution Island, Nunavut to prevent the migration of soils contaminated with polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) from entering the drainage pathways of the island and flowing into the ocean. Migration pathways for PCBs include: leaching from soil; becoming mobilized via runoff; and, dispersed as an aerosol into the atmosphere. This study examined the feasibility of using geosynthetics as filters and sorbents in a funnel and gate barrier system. Preliminary results from a field trial were reported. The main concern was to determine how the geosynthetics will perform in the harsh Arctic conditions. In addition to field studies, laboratory studies examined the changes in permittivity in geosynthetics that have been exposed to ultraviolet (UV) and freeze-thaw conditions. Different geosynthetic materials, including filters and adsorbents, were also examined to determine if an isotherm can be established and used to evaluate sorption kinetics. The funnel and gate barrier system currently installed at the site is working as expected. The barrier system traps PCBs in a short period of time and the geosynthetic boom is an excellent adsorbent of PCBs. However, the permeability of the barrier materials seem to be affected by freeze-thaw and UV effects. 17 refs., 2 tabs., 1 fig.

  8. Regional characteristics of sea ice thickness in Canadian shelf and Arctic Archipelago measured by Ground Penetrating Radar

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LI Tao; ZHAO Jinping; JIAO Yutian; HOU Jiaqiang; MU Longjiang

    2015-01-01

    Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) measurements of sea ice thickness including undeformed ice and ridged ice were carried out in the central north Canadian Archipelago in spring 2010. Results have shown a significant spatial heterogeneity of sea ice thickness across the shelf. The undeformed multi-year fast ice of (2.05±0.09) m thick was investigated southern inshore zone of Borden island located at middle of the observational section, which was the observed maximum thickness in the field work. The less thick sea ice was sampled across a flaw lead with the thicknesses of (1.05±0.11) m for the pack ice and (1.24±0.13) m for the fast ice. At the northernmost spot of the section, the undeformed multi-year pack ice was (1.54±0.22) m thick with a ridged ice of 2.5 to 3 m, comparing to the multi-year fast ice with the thickness of (1.67±0.16) m at the southernmost station in the Prince Gustaf Adolf Sea.

  9. Current-use pesticides in seawater and their bioaccumulation in polar bear-ringed seal food chains of the Canadian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morris, Adam D; Muir, Derek C G; Solomon, Keith R; Letcher, Robert J; McKinney, Melissa A; Fisk, Aaron T; McMeans, Bailey C; Tomy, Gregg T; Teixeira, Camilla; Wang, Xiaowa; Duric, Mark

    2016-07-01

    The distribution of current-use pesticides (CUPs) in seawater and their trophodynamics were investigated in 3 Canadian Arctic marine food chains. The greatest ranges of dissolved-phase concentrations in seawater for each CUP were endosulfan sulfate (less than method detection limit (MDL) to 19 pg L(-1) ) > dacthal (0.76-15 pg L(-1) ) > chlorpyrifos (less than MDL to 8.1 pg L(-1) ) > pentachloronitrobenzene (less than MDL to 2.6 pg L(-1) ) > α-endosulfan (0.20-2.3 pg L(-1) ). Bioaccumulation factors (BAFs, water-respiring organisms) were greatest in plankton, including chlorothalonil (log BAF = 7.4 ± 7.1 L kg(-1) , mean ± standard error), chlorpyrifos (log BAF = 6.9 ± 6.7 L kg(-1) ), and α-endosulfan (log BAF = 6.5 ± 6.0 L kg(-1) ). The largest biomagnification factors (BMFs) were found for dacthal in the capelin:plankton trophic relationship (BMF = 13 ± 5.0) at Cumberland Sound (Nunvavut), and for β-endosulfan (BMF = 16 ± 4.9) and α-endosulfan (BMF = 9.3 ± 2.8) in the polar bear-ringed seal relationship at Barrow and Rae Strait (NU), respectively. Concentrations of endosulfan sulfate exhibited trophic magnification (increasing concentrations with increasing trophic level) in the poikilothermic portion of the food web (trophic magnification factor = 1.4), but all of the CUPs underwent trophic dilution in the marine mammal food web, despite some trophic level-specific biomagnification. Together, these observations are most likely indicative of metabolism of these CUPs in mammals. Environ Toxicol Chem 2016;35:1695-1707. © 2016 SETAC. PMID:27027986

  10. Changes in Arctic vegetation amplify high-latitude warming through the greenhouse effect

    OpenAIRE

    Swann, Abigail L.; Fung, Inez Y.; Levis, Samuel; BONAN, GORDON B.; Doney, Scott C.

    2010-01-01

    Arctic climate is projected to change dramatically in the next 100 years and increases in temperature will likely lead to changes in the distribution and makeup of the Arctic biosphere. A largely deciduous ecosystem has been suggested as a possible landscape for future Arctic vegetation and is seen in paleo-records of warm times in the past. Here we use a global climate model with an interactive terrestrial biosphere to investigate the effects of adding deciduous trees on bare ground at high ...

  11. Prevalence of zoonotic anisakid nematodes in Inuit-harvested fish and mammals from the eastern Canadian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pufall, Erica L; Jones-Bitton, Andria; McEwen, Scott A; Brown, Tanya M; Edge, Victoria L; Rokicki, Jerzy; Karpiej, Katarzyna; Peregrine, Andrew S; Simard, Manon

    2012-11-01

    Human anisakidosis is a recognized Arctic zoonosis that is directly related to the consumption of traditional Inuit foods, particularly raw fish. The epidemiology of infections with the zoonotic anisakid nematodes Anisakis simplex and Pseudoterranova decipiens was investigated from August 2007 to July 2009 in Inuit-harvested fish and marine mammals from Inuit regions of Nunavik, Nunavut, and Nunatsiavut, Canada. Fish were tested for anisakid larvae using the pepsin-HCl digestion method, and the stomachs or stomach contents of beluga whales, walruses, and three seal species were examined for anisakids. Anisakids were found in seven of eight fish species, as well as in ringed seals (18.2%; 31/170), bearded seals (75.0%; 12/16), and beluga whales (78.9%; 15/19), but not walruses (0%; 0/15). In fish, the odds of being infected with A. simplex and/or P. decipiens was 68.6 (95% confidence interval, 11.6-627.7) times higher in marine fish than in anadromous fish, after adjusting for length of fish. Negative binomial models were created for animal species with large enough sample sizes and parasite prevalence estimates to assess risk factors associated with anisakid abundance. In seals, the only risk factor significantly associated with increasing anisakid abundance was increasing length (p whales, the only significant risk factor was year of capture (p = 0.03). In fish, length was the variable most commonly associated with increased anisakid larval abundance, with longer fish having significantly higher larval abundances than shorter fish of the same species. The presence of A. simplex and P. decipiens in bearded seals, ringed seals, and beluga whales from Inuit hunting grounds suggests that they likely act as definitive hosts for these parasites in these environments. With respect to zoonotic disease risk associated with Inuit country foods, among the species of fish examined, Atlantic tomcod, polar cod, and sculpins represented the greatest risk of foodborne disease

  12. Total mercury concentrations in anadromous Northern Dolly Varden from the northwestern Canadian Arctic: A historical baseline study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tran, L., E-mail: l5tran@uwaterloo.ca [Department of Biology, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3G1 (Canada); Reist, J.D. [Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Winnipeg, Manitoba R3T 2N6 (Canada); Power, M., E-mail: m3power@uwaterloo.ca [Department of Biology, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3G1 (Canada)

    2015-03-15

    Previous research has documented the significance of total mercury (THg) as a northern contaminant in general and of fish in particular. While much research has been devoted to documenting both spatial and temporal changes in THg in consumed fish, little effort has been directed at understanding patterns of THg in Dolly Varden (Salvelinus malma), a prized subsistence species throughout the western North American Arctic. Here we report historical THg concentrations for anadromous Dolly Varden from 10 populations in the Yukon and Northwest Territories sampled across a range of latitudes (67–69°N) and longitudes (136–141°W) between the years 1988–91. Unadjusted mean THg concentrations ranged from 15 to 254 ng/g wet weight. Length-adjusted THg concentrations were significantly different among sites, but were not related to latitude or longitude. Within and among populations, THg was significantly related to fork-length, age, δ{sup 15}N, and δ{sup 13}C, with the variation in THg found among populations being best explained by size. The data serve as an important baseline against which future changes in THg levels in this important subsistence fishery may be compared to determine the significance of any observed trends. - Highlights: • THg were measured in Dolly Varden from the Yukon and Northwest Territories. • Length-adjusted THg concentrations were not related to latitude or longitude. • Among-population variation in THg was best explained by fork-length. • Length-adjusted THg concentrations were related to age, δ{sup 15}N, and δ{sup 13}C. • Mean THg were below Health Canada’s consumption guideline for commercial fish.

  13. Invertebrate communities of the High Arctic ponds in Hornsund

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luoto Tomi P.

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available How environmental conditions influence current distributions of organisms at the local scale in sensitive High Arctic freshwaters is essential to understand in order to better comprehend the cascading consequences of the ongoing climate change. This knowledge is also important background data for paleolimnological assessments of long-term limnoecological changes and in describing the range of environmental variability. We sampled five limnologically different freshwater sites from the Fuglebergsletta marine terrace in Hornsund, southern Svalbard, for aquatic invertebrates. Invertebrate communities were tested against non-climatic environmental drivers as limnological and catchment variables. A clear separation in the communities between the sites was observed. The largest and deepest lake was characterized by a diverse Chironomidae community but Cladocera were absent. In a pond with marine influence, crustaceans, such as Ostracoda, Amphipoda, and calanoid Copepoda were the most abundant invertebrates. Two nutrient-rich ponds were dominated by a chironomid, Orthocladius consobrinus, whereas themost eutrophic pond was dominated by the cladoceran Daphnia pulex, suggesting decreasing diversity along with the trophic status. Overall, nutrient related variables appeared to have an important influence on the invertebrate community composition and diversity, the trophic state of the sites being linked with their exposure to geese guano. Other segregating variables included water color, presence/absence of fish, abundance of aquatic vegetation and lake depth. These results suggest that since most of these variables are climate-driven at a larger scale, the impacts of the ongoing climate change will have cumulative effects on aquatic ecosystems.

  14. Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) Members' Engagement with Sex Education in Canadian High Schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lapointe, Alicia

    2014-01-01

    This paper offers an examination of gay-straight alliance (GSA) members' engagement with sex education, sexual health, and prejudice and discrimination in Canadian public high schools. It explores how five students' (four straight and one gay-identifying) participation in GSAs served as a springboard for learning about and challenging…

  15. Canadian High School Athletics and the Saga of Continuing Gender Discrimination

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Paul T.

    2013-01-01

    In most Canadian jurisdictions, high school athletics are still governed by outdated and sexist views about participation. The author argues that the current approach is discriminatory and violates human rights laws. In addition, a careful analysis of the jurisprudence reveals a host of specious arguments that keeps athletically talented female…

  16. Elevated levels of ingested plastic in a high Arctic seabird, the northern fulmar (Fulmarus glacialis)

    OpenAIRE

    Trevail, A.M.; Gabrielsen, G.W.; Kuhn, S.; Franeker, van, J.A.

    2015-01-01

    Plastic pollution is of worldwide concern; however, increases in international commercial activity in the Arctic are occurring without the knowledge of the existing threat posed to the local marine environment by plastic litter. Here, we quantify plastic ingestion by northern fulmars, Fulmarus glacialis, from Svalbard, at the gateway to future shipping routes in the high Arctic. Plastic ingestion by Svalbard fulmars does not follow the established decreasing trend away from human marine impac...

  17. High connectivity in a long-lived high-Arctic seabird, the ivory gull Pagophila eburnea

    OpenAIRE

    Yannic, Glenn; Yearsley, Jonathan M.; Sermier, Roberto; Dufresnes, Christophe; Gilg, Olivier; Aebischer, Adrian; Gavrilo, Maria V.; Strøm, Hallvard; Mark L. Mallory; Morrison, R I Guy; Gilchrist, H Grant; Broquet, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    International audience Species may cope with rapid habitat changes by distribution shifts or adaptation to new conditions. A common feature of these responses is that they depend on how the process of dispersal connects populations, both demographically and genetically. We analyzed the genetic structure of a near-threatened high-Arctic seabird, the ivory gull (Pagophila eburnea) in order to infer the connectivity among gull colonies. We analyzed 343 individuals sampled from 16 localities a...

  18. Evaluation of PBL schemes in WRF for high Arctic conditions

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kirova-Galabova, Hristina; Batchvarova, Ekaterina; Gryning, Sven-Erik;

    2015-01-01

    We examined the features of the Arctic boundary layer during winter (land and sea covered by snow/ice) and summer (sea covered by sea ice) using Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model version 3.4.1 and radiosounding data collected at Station Nord (81.65N, 16.65W) . The dataset consist...

  19. A 50% increase in the amount of terrestrial particles delivered by the Mackenzie River into the Beaufort Sea (Canadian Arctic Ocean) over the last 10 years

    OpenAIRE

    Doxaran, D; Devred, E.; M. Babin

    2015-01-01

    Global warming has a significant impact at the regional scale on the Arctic Ocean and surrounding coastal zones (i.e., Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Norway and Russia). The recent increase in air temperature has resulted in increased precipitations along the drainage basins of Arctic Rivers. It has also directly impacted land and seawater temperatures with the consequence of melting the permafrost and sea-ice. An increase in freshwater discharge by main Arctic rivers has ...

  20. Ship emissions measurement in the Arctic by plume intercepts of the Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker Amundsen from the Polar 6 aircraft platform

    OpenAIRE

    Aliabadi, Amir A.; Thomas, Jennie L.; Herber, Andreas B.; Staebler, Ralf M.; Leaitch, W. Richard; Schulz, Hannes; Law, Kathy S.; Marelle, Louis; Burkart, Julia; Willis, Megan D.; Bozem, Heiko; Hoor, Peter M.; Köllner, Franziska; Schneider, Johannes; Levasseur, Maurice

    2016-01-01

    Decreasing sea ice and increasing marine navigability in northern latitudes have changed Arctic ship traffic patterns in recent years and are predicted to increase annual ship traffic in the Arctic in the future. Development of effective regulations to manage environmental impacts of shipping requires an understanding of ship emissions and atmospheric processing in the Arctic environment. As part of the summer 2014 NETCARE (Network on Climate and Aerosols) campaign, the plum...

  1. Work and High-Risk Alcohol Consumption in the Canadian Workforce

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie-Ève Blanc

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available This study examined the associations between occupational groups; work-organization conditions based on task design; demands, social relations, and gratifications; and weekly high-risk alcohol consumption among Canadian workers. A secondary data analysis was performed on Cycle 2.1 of the Canadian Community Health Survey conducted by Statistics Canada in 2003. The sample consisted of 76,136 employees 15 years of age and older nested in 2,451 neighbourhoods. High-risk alcohol consumption is defined in accordance with Canadian guidelines for weekly low-risk alcohol consumption. The prevalence of weekly high-risk alcohol consumption is estimated to be 8.1% among workers. The results obtained using multilevel logistic regression analysis suggest that increased work hours and job insecurity are associated with elevated odds of high-risk alcohol consumption. Gender female, older age, being in couple and living with children associated with lower odds of high-risk drinking, while increased education, smoking, physical activities, and, and economic status were associated with higher odds. High-risk drinking varied between neighbourhoods, and gender moderates the contribution of physical demands. The results suggest that work made a limited contribution and non-work factors a greater contribution to weekly high-risk alcohol consumption. Limits and implications of these results are discussed.

  2. On the formulation of sea-ice models. Part 2: Lessons from multi-year adjoint sea-ice export sensitivities through the Canadian Arctic Archipelago

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heimbach, Patick; Menemenlis, Dimitris; Losch, Martin; Campin, Jean-Michel; Hill, Chris

    The adjoint of an ocean general circulation model is at the heart of the ocean state estimation system of the Estimating the Circulation and Climate of the Ocean (ECCO) project. As part of an ongoing effort to extend ECCO to a coupled ocean/sea-ice estimation system, a dynamic and thermodynamic sea-ice model has been developed for the Massachusetts Institute of Technology general circulation model (MITgcm). One key requirement is the ability to generate, by means of automatic differentiation (AD), tangent linear (TLM) and adjoint (ADM) model code for the coupled MITgcm ocean/sea-ice system. This second part of a two-part paper describes aspects of the adjoint model. The adjoint ocean and sea-ice model is used to calculate transient sensitivities of solid (ice and snow) freshwater export through Lancaster Sound in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA). The adjoint state provides a complementary view of the dynamics. In particular, the transient, multi-year sensitivity patterns reflect dominant pathways and propagation timescales through the CAA as resolved by the model, thus shedding light on causal relationships, in the model, across the Archipelago. The computational cost of inferring such causal relationships from forward model diagnostics alone would be prohibitive. The role of the exact model trajectory around which the adjoint is calculated (and therefore of the exactness of the adjoint) is exposed through calculations using free-slip vs no-slip lateral boundary conditions. Effective ice thickness, sea surface temperature, and precipitation sensitivities, are discussed in detail as examples of the coupled sea-ice/ocean and atmospheric forcing control space. To test the reliability of the adjoint, finite-difference perturbation experiments were performed for each of these elements and the cost perturbations were compared to those "predicted" by the adjoint. Overall, remarkable qualitative and quantitative agreement is found. In particular, the adjoint correctly

  3. Revisiting factors controlling methane emissions from high-Arctic tundra

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mastepanov, M.; Sigsgaard, Charlotte; Tagesson, Håkan Torbern;

    2013-01-01

    controlling methane emission, i.e. temperature and water table position. Late in the growing season CH4 emissions were found to be very similar between the study years (except the extremely dry 2010) despite large differences in climatic factors (temperature and water table). Late-season bursts of CH4...... short-term control factors (temperature and water table). Our findings suggest the importance of multiyear studies with a continued focus on shoulder seasons in Arctic ecosystems....

  4. Development of High-Performance Pressure Tube Material for the Canadian SCWR Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walters, L.; Donohue, S.

    2016-02-01

    The Canadian super-critical water-cooled reactor (SCWR) concept is moderated by using heavy water, while the coolant is light water at 25 MPa with an inlet temperature of 625 K and an outlet temperature of 900 K. The fuel assemblies reside in vertical pressure tubes that are the pressure boundary. The pressure tubes are insulated from the fuel assemblies and operate at temperatures near the moderator temperature, at 390 K. The zirconium alloy Excel has been selected as a candidate material for the pressure tube based on favorable properties such as high strength, resistance to radiation-induced diametral strain, and high terminal solid solubility. However, significant future effort will be required to obtain material properties and crack initiation mechanisms at super-critical water (SCW) conditions to verify that annealed Excel is a viable option as a pressure tube material in the Canadian SCWR.

  5. Assessment of neurotoxic effects of mercury in beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas), ringed seals (Pusa hispida), and polar bears (Ursus maritimus) from the Canadian Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krey, Anke; Ostertag, Sonja K; Chan, Hing Man

    2015-03-15

    Marine mammals are indicator species of the Arctic ecosystem and an integral component of the traditional Inuit diet. The potential neurotoxic effects of increased mercury (Hg) in beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas), ringed seals (Pusa hispida), and polar bears (Ursus maritimus) are not clear. We assessed the risk of Hg-associated neurotoxicity to these species by comparing their brain Hg concentrations with threshold concentrations for toxic endpoints detected in laboratory animals and field observations: clinical symptoms (>6.75 mg/kg wet weight (ww)), neuropathological signs (>4 mg/kg ww), neurochemical changes (>0.4 mg/kg ww), and neurobehavioral changes (>0.1mg/kg ww). The total Hg (THg) concentrations in the cerebellum and frontal lobe of ringed seals and polar bears were 3mg/kg ww. Our results suggest that brain THg levels in polar bears are below levels that induce neurobehavioral effects as reported in the literature, while THg concentrations in ringed seals are within the range that elicit neurobehavioral effects and individual ringed seals exceed the threshold for neurochemical changes. The relatively high THg concentration in beluga whales exceeds all of the neurotoxicity thresholds assessed. High brain selenium (Se):Hg molar ratios were observed in all three species, suggesting that Se could protect the animals from Hg-associated neurotoxicity. This assessment was limited by several factors that influence neurotoxic effects in animals, including: animal species; form of Hg in the brain; and interactions with modifiers of Hg-associated toxicity, such as Se. Comparing brain Hg concentrations in wildlife with concentrations of appropriate laboratory studies can be used as a tool for risk characterization of the neurotoxic effects of Hg in Arctic marine mammals. PMID:24958011

  6. Deployment of a Fully-Automated Green Fluorescent Protein Imaging System in a High Arctic Autonomous Greenhouse

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alain Berinstain

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Higher plants are an integral part of strategies for sustained human presence in space. Space-based greenhouses have the potential to provide closed-loop recycling of oxygen, water and food. Plant monitoring systems with the capacity to remotely observe the condition of crops in real-time within these systems would permit operators to take immediate action to ensure optimum system yield and reliability. One such plant health monitoring technique involves the use of reporter genes driving fluorescent proteins as biological sensors of plant stress. In 2006 an initial prototype green fluorescent protein imager system was deployed at the Arthur Clarke Mars Greenhouse located in the Canadian High Arctic. This prototype demonstrated the advantageous of this biosensor technology and underscored the challenges in collecting and managing telemetric data from exigent environments. We present here the design and deployment of a second prototype imaging system deployed within and connected to the infrastructure of the Arthur Clarke Mars Greenhouse. This is the first imager to run autonomously for one year in the un-crewed greenhouse with command and control conducted through the greenhouse satellite control system. Images were saved locally in high resolution and sent telemetrically in low resolution. Imager hardware is described, including the custom designed LED growth light and fluorescent excitation light boards, filters, data acquisition and control system, and basic sensing and environmental control. Several critical lessons learned related to the hardware of small plant growth payloads are also elaborated.

  7. Arctic smoke ? record high air pollution levels in the European Arctic due to agricultural fires in Eastern Europe

    OpenAIRE

    A. Stohl; T. Berg; Burkhart, J. F.; A. M. Fjæraa; Forster, C.; Herber, A.; Hov, Ø.; Lunder, C.; McMillan, W. W.; Oltmans, S.; Shiobara, M.; Simpson, D; S. Solberg; K. Stebel; StrÖm, J.

    2006-01-01

    International audience In spring 2006, the European Arctic was abnormally warm, setting new historical temperature records. During this warm period, smoke from agricultural fires in Eastern Europe intruded into the European Arctic and caused the most severe air pollution episodes ever recorded there. This paper confirms that biomass burning (BB) was indeed the source of the observed air pollution, studies the transport of the smoke into the Arctic, and presents an overview of the observati...

  8. Velocity models and images using full waveform inversion and reverse time migration for the offshore permafrost in the Canadian shelf of Beaufort Sea, Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, S. G.; Hong, J. K.; Jin, Y. K.; Kim, S.; Kim, Y. G.; Dallimore, S.; Riedel, M.; Shin, C.

    2015-12-01

    During Expedition ARA05C (from Aug 26 to Sep 19, 2014) on the Korean icebreaker RV ARAON, the multi-channel seismic (MCS) data were acquired on the outer shelf and slope of the Canadian Beaufort Sea to investigate distribution and internal geological structures of the offshore ice-bonded permafrost and gas hydrates, totaling 998 km L-km with 19,962 shots. The MCS data were recorded using a 1500 m long solid-type streamer with 120 channels. Shot and group spacing were 50 m and 12.5 m, respectively. Most MCS survey lines were designed perpendicular and parallel to the strike of the shelf break. Ice-bonded permafrost or ice-bearing sediments are widely distributed under the Beaufort Sea shelf, which have formed during periods of lower sea level when portions of the shelf less than ~100m water depth were an emergent coastal plain exposed to very cold surface. The seismic P-wave velocity is an important geophysical parameter for identifying the distribution of ice-bonded permafrost with high velocity in this area. Recently, full waveform inversion (FWI) and reverse time migration (RTM) are commonly used to delineate detailed seismic velocity information and seismic image of geological structures. FWI is a data fitting procedure based on wave field modeling and numerical analysis to extract quantitative geophysical parameters such as P-, S-wave velocities and density from seismic data. RTM based on 2-way wave equation is a useful technique to construct accurate seismic image with amplitude preserving of field data. In this study, we suggest two-dimensional P-wave velocity model (Figure.1) using the FWI algorithm to delineate the top and bottom boundaries of ice-bonded permafrost in the Canadian shelf of Beaufort Sea. In addition, we construct amplitude preserving migrated seismic image using RTM to interpret the geological history involved with the evolution of permafrost.

  9. Topographic control of the depth of ground thaw in a peat covered continuous permafrost site in the Canadian arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Endrizzi, Stefano; Marsh, Philip; Quinton, William; Dall'Amico, Matteo

    2010-05-01

    Recent research has suggested an energy-based framework for delineating runoff contributing areas for permafrost dominated, tundra environments, where end of winter snow cover, and turbulent and radiant fluxes of energy and water are affected by topography, and control both snowmelt and the depth of ground thaw. The resulting spatially variable thaw depth, when combined with spatially variable water supply, spatially variable organic soil thickness, and depth variable hydraulic conductivity in organic soils, has a significant impact on the flow of water from uplands to the stream channel. In order to consider the effects of a spatially variable depth of thaw on runoff in a tundra basin, the hydrologic model GEOtop was applied to the Siksik Creek drainage basin located approximately 50 km north of Inuvik, NWT, Canada, characterized by a relatively gentle topography, with elevation ranging from 0 and 80 m a.s.l.. The small surface area of the basin (approximately 1 km2) allows the model to be run at a relatively high resolution. GEOtop is a grid based model with a complete surface energy balance scheme that accounts for variations in both the turbulent fluxes of sensible and latent heat, as well as for variations in radiant fluxes. The model also has a complete subsurface heat and water flux scheme that is able to route water and energy both vertically between a large number of soil layers, and horizontally between grids. Field data for model validation include meteorological data, depth of thaw, and runoff data for a 3 year period between 1992 and 1994, and high resolution DEM and vegetation height data obtained from airborne LiDAR in 2004. The purpose of this work is studying how topography controls the depth of thaw, and, therefore, the effects of a spatially variable snow cover are intentionally neglected. GEOtop was then run in a simple configuration, assuming an initial condition of uniform frost table at the ground surface at the end of snow melt, with snow

  10. Ambient UV-B radiation reduces PSII performance and net photosynthesis in high Arctic Salix arctica

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Albert, Kristian Rost; Mikkelsen, Teis Nørgaard; Ro-Poulsen, H.;

    2011-01-01

    Ambient ultraviolet-B (UV-B) radiation potentially impacts the photosynthetic performance of high Arctic plants. We conducted an UV-B exclusion experiment in a dwarf shrub heath in NE Greenland (74°N), with open control, filter control, UV-B filtering and UV-AB filtering, all in combination with ...... across position in the vegetation. These findings add to the evidence that the ambient solar UV-B currently is a significant stress factor for plants in high Arctic Greenland....

  11. Initiation and early evolution of the Franklin magmatic event preserved in the 720 Ma Natkusiak Formation, Victoria Island, Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williamson, Nicole M. B.; Ootes, Luke; Rainbird, Robert H.; Bédard, Jean H.; Cousens, Brian

    2016-03-01

    Our understanding of the onset and evolution of flood basalt volcanism is rooted in the study of the character and internal architecture of its eruptive products. Neoproterozoic continental flood basalts of the ca. 720 Ma Franklin magmatic event are preserved as the Natkusiak Formation and are exposed within the Minto Inlier on Victoria Island, Northwest Territories, Canada. The 200 m volcanic succession evaluated in this study has features similar to those of other continental flood basalt provinces and consists of four volcanic units: a basal unit of laterally discontinuous flows with evidence for lava-sediment interactions, a mafic volcaniclastic deposit emplaced as a mass flow, a quartz-rich volcanic sandstone that records the re-establishment of small river channels, and a unit of thick, high-titanium tholeiitic sheet flows that mark the onset of the main phase of flood volcanism. The basal units show marked lateral thickness variations that imply the existence of paleotopography during their eruption and/or deposition. In addition, two newly discovered volcanic vent complexes within the Natkusiak succession preserve the products of explosive, vent-forming basaltic pyroclastic fall eruptions. Differences in major element geochemistry between the basal and upper basaltic flow units, in conjunction with the lithological characteristics of each volcanic unit, are used to correlate the units on a scale of over 100 km from the south of the Minto Inlier to the north.

  12. Carbon Cycling in the Arctic Archipelago: The Export of Pacific Carbon to the North Atlantic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shadwick, E. H.; Papakyriakou, T.; Prowe, A. E. F.; Leong, D.; Moore, S.; Thomas, H.

    2009-04-01

    The Arctic Ocean is expected to be disproportionately sensitive to climatic changes, and thought to be an area where such changes might be detected. The Arctic hydrological cycle is influenced by: runoff and precipitation, sea ice formation/melting, and the inflow of saline waters from Bering and Fram Straits and the Barents Sea Shelf. Pacific water is recognizable as low salinity water, with high concentrations of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC), flowing from the Arctic Ocean to the North Atlantic via the Canadian Arctic Archipelago. We present DIC data from an east-west section through the Archipelago, as part of the Canadian International Polar Year initiatives. The fractions of Pacific and Arctic Ocean waters leaving the Archipelago and entering Baffin Bay, and subsequently the North Atlantic, are computed. The eastward transport of carbon from the Pacific, via the Arctic, to the North Atlantic is estimated. Altered mixing ratios of Pacific and freshwater in the Arctic Ocean have been recorded in recent decades. Any climatically driven alterations in the composition of waters leaving the Arctic Archipelago may have implications for anthropogenic CO2 uptake, and hence ocean acidification, in the subpolar and temperate North Atlantic.

  13. Immune system changes during simulated planetary exploration on Devon Island, high arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Effenhauser Rainer

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Dysregulation of the immune system has been shown to occur during spaceflight, although the detailed nature of the phenomenon and the clinical risks for exploration class missions have yet to be established. Also, the growing clinical significance of immune system evaluation combined with epidemic infectious disease rates in third world countries provides a strong rationale for the development of field-compatible clinical immunology techniques and equipment. In July 2002 NASA performed a comprehensive immune assessment on field team members participating in the Haughton-Mars Project (HMP on Devon Island in the high Canadian Arctic. The purpose of the study was to evaluate the effect of mission-associated stressors on the human immune system. To perform the study, the development of techniques for processing immune samples in remote field locations was required. Ten HMP-2002 participants volunteered for the study. A field protocol was developed at NASA-JSC for performing sample collection, blood staining/processing for immunophenotype analysis, whole-blood mitogenic culture for functional assessments and cell-sample preservation on-location at Devon Island. Specific assays included peripheral leukocyte distribution; constitutively activated T cells, intracellular cytokine profiles, plasma cortisol and EBV viral antibody levels. Study timepoints were 30 days prior to mission start, mid-mission and 60 days after mission completion. Results The protocol developed for immune sample processing in remote field locations functioned properly. Samples were processed on Devon Island, and stabilized for subsequent analysis at the Johnson Space Center in Houston. The data indicated that some phenotype, immune function and stress hormone changes occurred in the HMP field participants that were largely distinct from pre-mission baseline and post-mission recovery data. These immune changes appear similar to those observed in astronauts

  14. Climate warming decreases the survival of the little auk (Alle alle), a high Arctic avian predator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hovinen, Johanna E H; Welcker, Jorg; Descamps, Sébastien; Strøm, Hallvard; Jerstad, Kurt; Berge, Jørgen; Steen, Harald

    2014-01-01

    Delayed maturity, low fecundity, and high adult survival are traits typical for species with a long-life expectancy. For such species, even a small change in adult survival can strongly affect the population dynamics and viability. We examined the effects of both regional and local climatic variability on adult survival of the little auk, a long-lived and numerous Arctic seabird species. We conducted a mark-resighting study for a period of 8 years (2006-2013) simultaneously at three little auk breeding sites that are influenced by the West Spitsbergen Current, which is the main carrier of warm, Atlantic water into the Arctic. We found that the survival of adult little auks was negatively correlated with both the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) index and local summer sea surface temperature (SST), with a time lag of 2 and 1 year, respectively. The effects of NAO and SST were likely mediated through a change in food quality and/or availability: (1) reproduction, growth, and development of Arctic Calanus copepods, the main prey of little auks, are negatively influenced by a reduction in sea ice, reduced ice algal production, and an earlier but shorter lasting spring bloom, all of which result from an increased NAO; (2) a high sea surface temperature shortens the reproductive period of Arctic Calanus, decreasing the number of eggs produced. A synchronous variation in survival rates at the different colonies indicates that climatic forcing was similar throughout the study area. Our findings suggest that a predicted warmer climate in the Arctic will negatively affect the population dynamics of the little auk, a high Arctic avian predator. PMID:25247069

  15. Experimental icing affects growth, mortality, and flowering in a high Arctic dwarf shrub.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Milner, Jos M; Varpe, Øystein; van der Wal, René; Hansen, Brage Bremset

    2016-04-01

    Effects of climate change are predicted to be greatest at high latitudes, with more pronounced warming in winter than summer. Extreme mid-winter warm spells and heavy rain-on-snow events are already increasing in frequency in the Arctic, with implications for snow-pack and ground-ice formation. These may in turn affect key components of Arctic ecosystems. However, the fitness consequences of extreme winter weather events for tundra plants are not well understood, especially in the high Arctic. We simulated an extreme mid-winter rain-on-snow event at a field site in high Arctic Svalbard (78°N) by experimentally encasing tundra vegetation in ice. After the subsequent growing season, we measured the effects of icing on growth and fitness indices in the common tundra plant, Arctic bell-heather (Cassiope tetragona). The suitability of this species for retrospective growth analysis enabled us to compare shoot growth in pre and postmanipulation years in icing treatment and control plants, as well as shoot survival and flowering. Plants from icing treatment plots had higher shoot mortality and lower flowering success than controls. At the individual sample level, heavily flowering plants invested less in shoot growth than nonflowering plants, while shoot growth was positively related to the degree of shoot mortality. Therefore, contrary to expectation, undamaged shoots showed enhanced growth in ice treatment plants. This suggests that following damage, aboveground resources were allocated to the few remaining undamaged meristems. The enhanced shoot growth measured in our icing treatment plants has implications for climate studies based on retrospective analyses of Cassiope. As shoot growth in this species responds positively to summer warming, it also highlights a potentially complex interaction between summer and winter conditions. By documenting strong effects of icing on growth and reproduction of a widespread tundra plant, our study contributes to an understanding of

  16. Population dynamics in the high Arctic: Climate variations in time and space

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hendrichsen, Ditte Katrine

    is on the muskoxen, Ovibos moschatus, but also other species are included. The results show that snow cover is of paramount importance in governing a range of processes in the system, including spatial distribution, gender-specific responses, resource utilisation, social behaviour and interactions with other species......Climatic factors profoundly influence the population dynamics, species interactions and demography of Arctic species. Analyses of the spatio-temporal dynamics within and across species are therefore necessary to understand and predict the responses of Arctic ecosystems to climatic variability......, and to unravel the relative importance of biotic and abiotic factors on ecosystem functioning. This thesis considers how selected vertebrate species in a high Arctic ecosystem respond to climatic variability, using 13 years of data from the monitoring programme at Zackenberg, Northeast Greenland. The main focus...

  17. Remagnetization and Cementation of Unconsolidated Sediments in the Mallik 5L-38 Well (Canadian Arctic) by Solute Exclusion During Gas Hydrate Formation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, T. S.; Enkin, R. J.; Esteban, L.

    2007-05-01

    Bulk magnetic properties provide a sensitive measure of sedimentary diagenesis related to the stability and growth of gas hydrates. The deposit at Mallik (Mackenzie Delta, Canadian Arctic) occurs in unconsolidated Tertiary sands, but is absent in interstratified silt layers. A detailed sampling of the JAPEX/JNOC/GSC Mallik 5L-38 core tested the use of magnetic properties for detecting diagenetic changes related to the hydrate. Petrographic studies reveal that the sands are well sorted and clean, with quartz > chert >> muscovite and little fines content. Excepting a few rare bands of indurated dolomite in the midst of the gas hydrate zone, there is little or no cementation in the sands. Detrital magnetite is the dominant magnetic mineral, comprising up to a few percent of the sand grain population. In contrast, the muddier layers have a somewhat different detrital grain composition, richer in lithic (sedimentary and metamorphic) grains, feldspar, and clays. They are extensively diagenetically altered (to as much as 30- 40%) and cemented with carbonates, clays, chlorite and the iron sulphide greigite (the dominant magnetic mineral). The greigite is recognized by its isotropic creamy-white reflectance, cubic to prismatic habit, and characteristic tarnish to faintly bluish bireflectant mackinawite. Habits range from disseminated cubes and colliform masses to inflationary massive sulphide veins and clots. Rare detrital grains of magnetite were observed among the silt grains, but never in a reaction relationship or overgrown. Instead the greigite has nucleated separately, in tensional fractures and granular masses up to 4 mm across. In this particular sediment sequence, being so quartz and chert rich, there is insufficient local source for the introduced cements (calcite, dolomite, greigite, clays, jarosite), so ions must have been introduced by fluid flow. Magnetic studies reveal a bi-modal character related to the lithology (sands versus silts) and their magnetic

  18. High diversity of root associated fungi in both alpine and arctic Dryas octopetala

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Geml Jozsef

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Dryas octopetala is a widespread dwarf shrub in alpine and arctic regions that forms ectomycorrhizal (ECM symbiotic relationships with fungi. In this study we investigated the fungal communities associated with roots of D. octopetala in alpine sites in Norway and in the High Arctic on Svalbard, where we aimed to reveal whether the fungal diversity and species composition varied across the Alpine and Arctic regions. The internal transcribed spacer (ITS region of nuclear ribosomal DNA was used to identify the fungal communities from bulk root samples obtained from 24 plants. Results A total of 137 operational taxonomic units (OTUs were detected (using 97% similarity cut off during sequence clustering and well-known ECM genera such as Cenococcum, Cortinarius, Hebeloma, Inocybe and Tomentella occurred frequently. There was no decrease in fungal diversity with increasing latitude. The overall spatial heterogeneity was high, but a weak geographical structuring of the composition of OTUs in the root systems was observed. Calculated species accumulation curves did not level off. Conclusions This study indicates that the diversity of fungi associated with D. octopetala does not decrease in high latitude arctic regions, which contrasts observations made in a wide spectrum of other organism groups. A high degree of patchiness was observed across root systems, but the fungal communities were nevertheless weakly spatially structured. Non-asymptotical species accumulation curves and the occurrence of a high number of singletons indicated that only a small fraction of the fungal diversity was detected.

  19. Gray whale sightings in the Canadian Beaufort Sea, September 2014

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iwahara, Yuka; Fujiwara, Amane; Ito, Keizo; Miyashita, Kazushi; Mitani, Yoko

    2016-06-01

    Gray whales (Eschrichtius robustus) are distributed within the productive neritic and estuarine waters of the North Pacific Ocean, the Bering Sea, and adjacent waters of the Arctic Ocean. They migrate to high-latitude feeding grounds each spring. Their main feeding grounds in the Arctic include the Chirikov Basin, the northeastern Chukchi Sea from Pt. Hope to Cape Lisburne and Pt. Lay to Pt. Barrow, and the northwestern Chukchi Sea along the Chukotka coast. Although sightings are rare in the Canadian Beaufort Sea, we observed three gray whales in two groups in this area in September 2014. A mud plume was observed near one of the whales, suggesting the animal had been feeding. In the Alaskan Beaufort Sea, large-scale monitoring of the distributions of marine mammals has been continuously conducted since 1979; however, there has been less monitoring in the Canadian Beaufort Sea. Therefore, it is necessary to record opportunistic sightings, such as those described here.

  20. Body size variation of a high-Arctic seabird: the dovekie (

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wojczulanis-Jakubas, K.; Jakubas, D; Welcker, J.; Harding, A.M.A.; Karnovsky, N.J.; Kidawa, D.; Steen, H.; Stempniewicz, L.; Camphuysen, C.J.

    2011-01-01

    Variation in body size among subpopulations of the same species may reflect phenotypic or genetic responses to environmental gradients or geographical distance. Here, we examine geographical variation in the body size of the dovekie (Alle alle), the most numerous high-Arctic seabird. Locations of do

  1. Modeling of Arctic Storms with a Variable High-Resolution General Circulation Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Taylor, Mark A. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Roesler, Erika Louise [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Bosler, Peter Andrew [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2015-08-01

    The Department of Energy’s (DOE) Biological and Environmental Research project, “Water Cycle and Climate Extremes Modeling” is improving our understanding and modeling of regional details of the Earth’s water cycle. Sandia is using high resolution model behavior to investigate storms in the Arctic.

  2. High-strength, high-fracture toughness submerged-arc weld for arctic line pipe

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    In this study, the development of a high-strength, high-fracture toughness double submerged-arc weld for X-70 arctic grade line pipe is documented. The weld was made with a two-wire DC/AC tandem setup at a speed of 27.5 mm/s (65 in./min.). A fused, semi-neutral, fine grained (32 x 200) flux was used. The resulting weld metal microstructure was at least 95% acicular ferrite. The weld had excellent fracture toughness with not less than 60 joules at -600C and 50% FATT at -500C. The formation of acicular ferrite was interpreted as the result of suppression of proeutectoid ferrite owing to the high molybdenum content of the wire and the presence of TiO2 inclusions. The properties were consistently achieved during the manufacture of spirally welded pipes 1067 mm 0.D x 14 mm W.T

  3. High resolution modelling of the decreasing Arctic sea ice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, K. S.; Rasmussen, T. A. S.; Blüthgen, Jonas;

    2012-01-01

    , and secondly oceanic oil drift in ice affected conditions. Both investigations are made with the coupled ocean - sea ice model HYCOM-CICE at 10 km resolution, which is also used operationally at DMI and allows detailed studies of sea ice build-up, drift and melt. To investigate the sea ice decrease of the last......The Arctic sea ice cover has been rapidly decreasing and thinning over the last decade, with minimum ice extent in 2007 and almost as low extent in 2011. This study investigates two aspects of the decreasing ice cover; first the large scale thinning and changing dynamics of the polar sea ice...... decade, we have performed a reanalysis simulation of the years 1990-2011, forced with ERA Interim atmospheric data. Thus, the simulation includes both the period before the recent sea ice decrease and the full period of decrease up till today. We will present our model results of the thinning...

  4. Sleep and the endogenous melatonin rhythm of high arctic residents during the summer and winter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Michel A; Love, Ryan J; Hawton, Andrea; Arendt, Josephine

    2015-03-15

    The seasonal extremes of photoperiod in high latitudes place particular strain on the human circadian system. Arctic residence has been associated with poor sleep in both summer and winter. The goal of the work reported here was to study the circadian rhythms of individuals living in the high Arctic by measuring sleep variables and the timing of melatonin production. Two research trials were conducted in the built environment of CFS Alert (82° 29' 58″ N). Participants wore motion logging devices (actigraphs), which measure ambient light as well as motion, for 1week to provide data on sleep quantity, quality and light exposure. On the penultimate day of each trial, the participants were maintained together in a gymnasium with lounge chairs and saliva was collected at regular intervals to measure melatonin and assess the dim light melatonin onset (DLMO), offset (MelOFF), 50% rise and fall times of the whole profile and total production. In general, sleep duration was found to be significantly different between the January and June data collections at CFS Alert, with participants in June sleeping 50min on average less each day compared to their January counterparts. In June sleep was mistimed in many subjects relative to circadian phase as evidenced by the melatonin rhythm. Exposure to bright evening light was the most likely causal factor and should be avoided in the Arctic summer. The Arctic summer represents a particularly challenging environment for obtaining sufficient sleep. This has implications for the cognitive performance of staff during work hours. PMID:25615594

  5. Sleep and the endogenous melatonin rhythm of high arctic residents during the summer and winter.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Michel A; Love, Ryan J; Hawton, Andrea; Arendt, Josephine

    2015-03-15

    The seasonal extremes of photoperiod in high latitudes place particular strain on the human circadian system. Arctic residence has been associated with poor sleep in both summer and winter. The goal of the work reported here was to study the circadian rhythms of individuals living in the high Arctic by measuring sleep variables and the timing of melatonin production. Two research trials were conducted in the built environment of CFS Alert (82° 29' 58″ N). Participants wore motion logging devices (actigraphs), which measure ambient light as well as motion, for 1week to provide data on sleep quantity, quality and light exposure. On the penultimate day of each trial, the participants were maintained together in a gymnasium with lounge chairs and saliva was collected at regular intervals to measure melatonin and assess the dim light melatonin onset (DLMO), offset (MelOFF), 50% rise and fall times of the whole profile and total production. In general, sleep duration was found to be significantly different between the January and June data collections at CFS Alert, with participants in June sleeping 50min on average less each day compared to their January counterparts. In June sleep was mistimed in many subjects relative to circadian phase as evidenced by the melatonin rhythm. Exposure to bright evening light was the most likely causal factor and should be avoided in the Arctic summer. The Arctic summer represents a particularly challenging environment for obtaining sufficient sleep. This has implications for the cognitive performance of staff during work hours.

  6. The flow of radionuclides through the Canadian archipelago

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The transport of contaminants to the Canadian Arctic by air and in water and their concentration through the marine food web has lead to enhanced levels of contaminants in several foods of Canadian northern inhabitants. Artificial radionuclides in the marine water can be used to determine water circulation and to trace contaminant transport through the Canadian Archipelago

  7. Possible Origin of High-Amplitude Reflection Packages (HARPs) in the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebedeva-Ivanova, Nina; Hutchinson, Deborah; Shimeld, John; Chian, Deping; Hart, Patrick; Jackson, Ruth; Saltus, Richard; Mosher, David

    2013-04-01

    The Canada Basin (CB) of the Arctic Ocean is a semi-enclosed ocean basin surrounded by the Alaskan and Canadian margins to the south and east, the Alpha-Mendeleev Large Igneous Province (AMLIP) to the north and the subsided continental Chukchi Borderland (ChB) to the west. During 2007-2011, US-Canada expeditions collected ~15,000 km multichannel seismic data and sonobuoy reflection and refraction seismic data with average spacing of ~80 km mostly over the CB and AMLIP. High-amplitude reflective packages (HARPs) underlie the mostly flat-lying sediments of CB. Although HARPs are discontinuous in the central CB, they become more continuous toward ChB and AMLIP. HARPs are often the most reflective events in the seismic section, exceeding even the seafloor reflection. Only rarely are reflections seen beneath HARPs. Where best developed, HARPs are ~100-300 ms TWTT, consisting of several high-amplitude wavelets with a pronounced narrow frequency band within the limits of ~10-30 Hz. This character of HARPs is consistent with patterns produced by constructive interference of thin beds (Widess, 1973). Forward modeling of sonobuoy data, synthetic tests, and frequency analysis of the tuning effect suggest that HARPs are composed of a series of alternating high- and low-velocity layers. The high-velocity layers are ~100-200 m thick with P-velocities of ~3.5-4.5 km/s. The low-velocity layers are about half as thick with velocities of ~2-3 km/s. A broad range of possible interpretations of rock composition exists from these velocities, e.g. sandstone and interbedded shale (Prince Patrick Island, Harrison and Brent, 2005); or tholeiitic basalts flows and sediments (Voring volcanic margin, Olanke and Eldholm, 1994); or sills and sediments (Newfoundland margin, Peron-Pinvidic et all, 2010). HARP can be associated with several origins. In the central and southern CB, where oceanic spreading is interpreted, HARPs are discontinuous among high-relief, but otherwise low

  8. Schools In Board - Bridging Arctic Research And Environmental Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barber, D. G.; Barber, L.

    2008-12-01

    Schools on Board (www.arcticnet.ulaval.ca) was created in 2002 to address the outreach objectives of a network of Canadian scientists conducting research in the High Arctic. The program was piloted with great success with the 2004 research program called the Canadian Arctic Shelf Study (CASES). Since then, the S/B program continues as an integral outreach program of the Canadian Network of Centres of Excellence (NCE) known as ArcticNet. The primary objective of the program is to bridge Arctic climate change research with science and environmental education in the public school system. It is a vehicle for scientists and graduate students to share their research program with high schools and the general public. The program encourages schools to include Arctic Sciences into their science programs by linking Arctic research to existing curriculum, providing resources and opportunities to send high school students and teachers into the Arctic to participate in a science expedition on board the Canadian research icebreaker CCGS Amundsen. The field program is an adventure into Arctic research that exposes students and teachers to the objectives and methods of numerous science teams representing a number of research disciplines and institutions from across Canada and beyond. Face-to-face interactions with scientists of all levels (masters, PhD's, researchers, CRC chairs), hands-on experiences in the field and in the labs, and access to state-of-the-art scientific instrumentation, combine to create a powerful learning environment. In addition to hands-on research activities the program introduces participants to many aspects of Canada's North, including local knowledge related to climate change, culture, history, and politics - within the educational program on the ship and the planned visits to Northern communities. During International Polar Year (IPY) Schools on Board collaborated with international researchers and northern agencies from 11 countries to offer one

  9. Morphological and morphometric differentiation of dorsal-spined first stage larvae of lungworms, (Nematoda: Protostrongylidae) infecting muskoxen (Ovibos moschatus) in the Central Canadian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umingmakstrongylus pallikuukensis and Varestrongylus eleguneniensis are the two most common protostrongylid nematodes infecting muskoxen in the North American Arctic and Subarctic. First stage larvae (L1) of both these lungworms have a characteristic dorsal spine originating at the level of proxima...

  10. Comparison of soil derived tetraether membrane lipid distributions and plant-wax dD compositions for reconstruction of Canadian Arctic temperatures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pautler, B.G.; Reichart, G.-J.; Sanborn, P.T.; Simpson, M.J.; Weijers, J.W.H.

    2014-01-01

    Polar amplification of climate warming has received much attention as these rapidly rising temperatures have the potential to alter ecosystem function and biogeochemical cycles. In particular carbon preserved in Arctic tundra soil and permafrost may be especially vulnerable resulting in carbon cycle

  11. Comparison of soil derived tetraether membrane lipid distributions and plant-wax δD compositions for reconstruction of Canadian Arctic temperatures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pautler, B.G.; Reichart, G.-J.; Sanborn, P.T.; Simpson, M.J.; Weijers, J.W.H.

    2014-01-01

    Polar amplification of climate warming has received much attention as these rapidly rising temperatures have the potential to alter ecosystem function and biogeochemical cycles. In particular carbon preserved in Arctic tundra soil and permafrost may be especially vulnerable resulting in carbon cycle

  12. A 50 % increase in the mass of terrestrial particles delivered by the Mackenzie River into the Beaufort Sea (Canadian Arctic Ocean) over the last 10 years

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doxaran, D.; Devred, E.; Babin, M.

    2015-06-01

    Global warming has a significant impact on the regional scale on the Arctic Ocean and surrounding coastal zones (i.e., Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Norway and Russia). The recent increase in air temperature has resulted in increased precipitation along the drainage basins of Arctic rivers. It has also directly impacted land and seawater temperatures with the consequence of melting permafrost and sea ice. An increase in freshwater discharge by main Arctic rivers has been clearly identified in time series of field observations. The freshwater discharge of the Mackenzie River has increased by 25% since 2003. This may have increased the mobilization and transport of various dissolved and particulate substances, including organic carbon, as well as their export to the ocean. The release from land to the ocean of such organic material, which has been sequestered in a frozen state since the Last Glacial Maximum, may significantly impact the Arctic Ocean carbon cycle as well as marine ecosystems. In this study we use 11 years of ocean color satellite data and field observations collected in 2009 to estimate the mass of terrestrial suspended solids and particulate organic carbon delivered by the Mackenzie River into the Beaufort Sea (Arctic Ocean). Our results show that during the summer period, the concentration of suspended solids at the river mouth, in the delta zone and in the river plume has increased by 46, 71 and 33%, respectively, since 2003. Combined with the variations observed in the freshwater discharge, this corresponds to a more than 50% increase in the particulate (terrestrial suspended particles and organic carbon) export from the Mackenzie River into the Beaufort Sea.

  13. A 50% increase in the amount of terrestrial particles delivered by the Mackenzie River into the Beaufort Sea (Canadian Arctic Ocean) over the last 10 years

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doxaran, D.; Devred, E.; Babin, M.

    2015-01-01

    Global warming has a significant impact at the regional scale on the Arctic Ocean and surrounding coastal zones (i.e., Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Norway and Russia). The recent increase in air temperature has resulted in increased precipitations along the drainage basins of Arctic Rivers. It has also directly impacted land and seawater temperatures with the consequence of melting the permafrost and sea-ice. An increase in freshwater discharge by main Arctic rivers has been clearly identified in time series of field observations. The freshwater discharge of the Mackenzie River has increased by 25% since 2003. This may have increased the mobilization and transport of various dissolved and particulate substances, including organic carbon, as well as their export to the ocean. The release from land to the ocean of such organic material, which was sequestered as frozen since the last glacial maximum, may significantly impact the Arctic Ocean carbon cycle as well as marine ecosystems. In this study we use 11 years of ocean-colour satellite data and field observations collected in 2009 to estimate the amount of terrestrial suspended solids and particulate organic carbon delivered by the Mackenzie River into the Beaufort Sea (Arctic Ocean). Our results show that during the summer period the concentration of suspended solids at the river mouth, in the delta zone and in the river plume has increased by 46, 71 and 33%, respectively, since 2003. Combined with the variations observed in the freshwater discharge, this corresponds to a more than 50% increase in the particulate (terrestrial suspended particles and organic carbon) export from the Mackenzie River into the Beaufort Sea.

  14. A 50% increase in the amount of terrestrial particles delivered by the Mackenzie River into the Beaufort Sea (Canadian Arctic Ocean over the last 10 years

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Doxaran

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Global warming has a significant impact at the regional scale on the Arctic Ocean and surrounding coastal zones (i.e., Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Norway and Russia. The recent increase in air temperature has resulted in increased precipitations along the drainage basins of Arctic Rivers. It has also directly impacted land and seawater temperatures with the consequence of melting the permafrost and sea-ice. An increase in freshwater discharge by main Arctic rivers has been clearly identified in time series of field observations. The freshwater discharge of the Mackenzie River has increased by 25% since 2003. This may have increased the mobilization and transport of various dissolved and particulate substances, including organic carbon, as well as their export to the ocean. The release from land to the ocean of such organic material, which was sequestered as frozen since the last glacial maximum, may significantly impact the Arctic Ocean carbon cycle as well as marine ecosystems. In this study we use 11 years of ocean-colour satellite data and field observations collected in 2009 to estimate the amount of terrestrial suspended solids and particulate organic carbon delivered by the Mackenzie River into the Beaufort Sea (Arctic Ocean. Our results show that during the summer period the concentration of suspended solids at the river mouth, in the delta zone and in the river plume has increased by 46, 71 and 33%, respectively, since 2003. Combined with the variations observed in the freshwater discharge, this corresponds to a more than 50% increase in the particulate (terrestrial suspended particles and organic carbon export from the Mackenzie River into the Beaufort Sea.

  15. Arctic Landfast Sea Ice 1953-1998

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce — The files in this data set contain landfast sea ice data (monthly means) gathered from both Russian Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute (AARI) and Canadian Ice...

  16. Delayed Workforce Entry and High Emigration Rates for Recent Canadian Radiation Oncology Graduates

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Loewen, Shaun K., E-mail: shaun.loewen@cancercare.mb.ca [CancerCare Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB (Canada); Halperin, Ross; Lefresne, Shilo [BC Cancer Agency, Vancouver, BC (Canada); Trotter, Theresa [Tom Baker Cancer Centre, Calgary, AB (Canada); Stuckless, Teri [Dr H. Bliss Murphy Cancer Centre, St. John' s, NL (Canada); Brundage, Michael [Cancer Centre of Southeastern Ontario, Kingston, ON (Canada)

    2015-10-01

    Purpose: To determine the employment status and location of recent Canadian radiation oncology (RO) graduates and to identify current workforce entry trends. Methods and Materials: A fill-in-the-blank spreadsheet was distributed to all RO program directors in December 2013 and June 2014, requesting the employment status and location of their graduates over the last 3 years. Visa trainee graduates were excluded. Results: Response rate from program directors was 100% for both survey administrations. Of 101 graduates identified, 99 (98%) had known employment status and location. In the December survey, 5 2013 graduates (16%), 17 2012 graduates (59%), and 18 2011 graduates (75%) had permanent staff employment. Six months later, 5 2014 graduates (29%), 15 2013 graduates (48%), 24 2012 graduates (83%), and 21 2011 graduates (88%) had secured staff positions. Fellowships and temporary locums were common for those without staff employment. The proportion of graduates with staff positions abroad increased from 22% to 26% 6 months later. Conclusions: Workforce entry for most RO graduates was delayed but showed steady improvement with longer time after graduation. High emigration rates for jobs abroad signify domestic employment challenges for newly certified, Canadian-trained radiation oncologists. Coordination on a national level is required to address and regulate radiation oncologist supply and demand disequilibrium in Canada.

  17. The Arctic Ocean and climate: A Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aagaard, K.; Carmack, E. C.

    The most likely effects of the Arctic Ocean on global climate are through the surface heat balance and the thermohaline circulation. The former is intimately related to the stratification of the Arctic Ocean, while the latter may be significantly controlled by outflow from the Arctic Ocean into the major convective regions to the south. Evaluating these issues adequately requires detailed knowledge of the density structure and circulation of the Arctic Ocean and of their variability. New long time series of temperature and salinity (T/S) from the Canadian Basin show a grainy T/S structure, probably on a horizontal scale of a few tens of kilometers. The temperature field is particularly inhomogeneous, since for cold water it is not greatly constrained by buoyancy forces. The simultaneous velocity time series show that the grainy T/S structure results from a complex eddy field, often with vertically or horizontally paired counter-rotating eddies drifting with a slow larger-scale flow. The ocean is therefore not well mixed on these scales. Finally, we note that the ventilation of the interior Arctic Ocean from the adjacent shelves appears to be highly variable on an interannual basis, and indeed may not be robust on longer time scales. In particular we note the absence, or near-absence, of deep ventilation of the Canadian Basin during the last 500 years. Based on the 14C model of Macdonald et al. [1993], however, we hypothesize that these same waters were ventilated prior to that time and that the deep convective shutdown about 500 years ago coincided with the end of the whale-hunting Thule culture. We further suggest that the two events had a common cause, viz., the increase of sea ice over the continental shelves during summer.

  18. Middle-High Latitude N2O Distributions Related to the Arctic Vortex Breakup

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2006-01-01

    The relationship of N2O distributions with the Arctic vortex breakup is first analyzed with a probability distribution function (PDF) analysis. The N2O concentration shows different distributions between the early and late vortex breakup years. In the early breakup years, the N2O concentration shows low values and large dispersions after the vortex breakup, which is related to the inhomogeneity in the vertical advection in the middle and high latitude lower stratosphere. The horizontal diffusion coefficient (Kyy)shows a larger value accordingly. In the late breakup years, the N2O concentration shows high values and more uniform distributions than in the early years after the vortex breakup, with a smaller vertical advection and Kyy after the vortex breakup. It is found that the N2O distributions are largely affected by the Arctic vortex breakup time but the dynamically defined vortex breakup time is not the only factor.

  19. The effect of misleading surface temperature estimations on the sensible heat fluxes at a high Arctic site – the Arctic turbulence experiment 2006 on Svalbard (ARCTEX-2006

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Bareiss

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available The observed rapid climate warming in the Arctic requires improvements in permafrost and carbon cycle monitoring, accomplished by setting up long-term observation sites with high-quality in-situ measurements of turbulent heat, water and carbon fluxes as well as soil physical parameters in an Arctic landscape. But accurate quantification and well adapted parameterizations of turbulent fluxes in polar environments presents fundamental problems in soil-snow-ice-vegetation-atmosphere interaction studies. One of these problems is the accurate estimation of the surface or aerodynamic temperature T(0 required to force most of the bulk aerodynamic formula currently used. Results from the Arctic-Turbulence-Experiment (ARCTEX-2006 performed on Svalbard during the winter/spring transition 2006 helped to better understand the physical exchange and transport processes of energy. The existence of an untypical temperature profile close to the surface in the Arctic spring at Svalbard could be proven to be one of the major issues hindering estimation of the appropriate surface temperature. Thus, it is essential to adjust the set-up of measurement systems carefully when applying flux-gradient methods that are commonly used to force atmosphere-ocean/land-ice models. The results of a comparison of different sensible heat-flux parameterizations with direct measurements indicate that only the use of a hydrodynamic three-layer temperature-profile model achieves enough accuracy for heat flux calculations as it reliably reproduces the temporal variability of the surface temperature.

  20. The effect of misleading surface temperature estimations on the sensible heat fluxes at a high Arctic site – the Arctic Turbulence Experiment 2006 on Svalbard (ARCTEX-2006

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. Lüers

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available The observed rapid climate warming in the Arctic requires improvements in permafrost and carbon cycle monitoring, accomplished by setting up long-term observation sites with high-quality in-situ measurements of turbulent heat, water and carbon fluxes as well as soil physical parameters in Arctic landscapes. But accurate quantification and well adapted parameterizations of turbulent fluxes in polar environments presents fundamental problems in soil-snow-ice-vegetation-atmosphere interaction studies. One of these problems is the accurate estimation of the surface or aerodynamic temperature T(0 required to force most of the bulk aerodynamic formulae currently used. Results from the Arctic-Turbulence-Experiment (ARCTEX-2006 performed on Svalbard during the winter/spring transition 2006 helped to better understand the physical exchange and transport processes of energy. The existence of an atypical temperature profile close to the surface in the Arctic spring at Svalbard could be proven to be one of the major issues hindering estimation of the appropriate surface temperature. Thus, it is essential to adjust the set-up of measurement systems carefully when applying flux-gradient methods that are commonly used to force atmosphere-ocean/land-ice models. The results of a comparison of different sensible heat-flux parameterizations with direct measurements indicate that the use of a hydrodynamic three-layer temperature-profile model achieves the best fit and reproduces the temporal variability of the surface temperature better than other approaches.

  1. Survival of rapidly fluctuating natural low winter temperatures by High Arctic soil invertebrates

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Convey, Peter; Abbandonato, Holly; Bergan, Frode;

    2015-01-01

    experienced at microhabitat level, few studies have explicitly set out to link field conditions experienced by natural multispecies communities with the more detailed laboratory ecophysiological studies of a small number of 'representative' species. This is particularly the case during winter, when snow cover...... microhabitats. To assess survival of natural High Arctic soil invertebrate communities contained in soil and vegetation cores to natural winter temperature variations, the overwintering temperatures they experienced were manipulated by deploying cores in locations with varying snow accumulation: No Snow...

  2. The invertebrate fauna of anthropogenic soils in the High-Arctic settlement of Barentsburg, Svalbard

    OpenAIRE

    Coulson, Steve J.; Fjellberg, Arne; Dariusz J. Gwiazdowicz; Lebedeva, Natalia V.; Elena N. Melekhina; Solhøy, Torstein; Erséus, Christer; Maraldo, Kristine; Miko, Ladislav; Schatz, Heinrich; Rüdiger M. Schmelz; Søli, Geir; Stur,Elisabeth

    2013-01-01

    The terrestrial environment of the High Arctic consists of a mosaic of habitat types. In addition to the natural habitat diversity, various human-influenced types may occur. For the resident invertebrate fauna, these anthropogenic habitats may be either unusually favourable or detrimental. In the town of Barentsburg, Svalbard, soils were imported for the greenhouses from southern Russia. These soils were subsequently discarded outside the greenhouses and have become augmented with manure from...

  3. Impact of future Arctic shipping on high-latitude black carbon deposition

    OpenAIRE

    J. Browse; Carslaw, KS; Schmidt, A.; Corbett, JJ

    2013-01-01

    The retreat of Arctic sea ice has led to renewed calls to exploit Arctic shipping routes. The diversion of ship traffic through the Arctic will shorten shipping routes and possibly reduce global shipping emissions. However, deposition of black carbon (BC) aerosol emitted by additional Arctic ships could cause a reduction in the albedo of snow and ice, accelerating snowmelt and sea ice loss. Here we use recently compiled Arctic shipping emission inventories for 2004 and 2050 together with a gl...

  4. Baseline monitoring of the western Arctic Ocean estimates 20% of the Canadian Basin surface waters are undersaturated with respect to aragonite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robbins, Lisa L.; Wynn, Jonathan G.; Lisle, John T.; Yates, Kimberly K.; Knorr, Paul O.; Byrne, Robert H.; Liu, Xuewu; Patsavas, Mark C.; Azetsu-Scott, Kumiko; Takahashi, Taro

    2013-01-01

    Marine surface waters are being acidified due to uptake of anthropogenic carbon dioxide, resulting in surface ocean areas of undersaturation with respect to carbonate minerals, including aragonite. In the Arctic Ocean, acidification is expected to occur at an accelerated rate with respect to the global oceans, but a paucity of baseline data has limited our understanding of the extent of Arctic undersaturation and of regional variations in rates and causes. The lack of data has also hindered refinement of models aimed at projecting future trends of ocean acidification. Here, based on more than 34,000 data records collected in 2010 and 2011, we establish a baseline of inorganic carbon data (pH, total alkalinity, dissolved inorganic carbon, partial pressure of carbon dioxide, and aragonite saturation index) for the western Arctic Ocean. This data set documents aragonite undersaturation in ~20% of the surface waters of the combined Canada and Makarov basins, an area characterized by recent acceleration of sea ice loss. Conservative tracer studies using stable oxygen isotopic data from 307 sites show that while the entire surface of this area receives abundant freshwater from meteoric sources, freshwater from sea ice melt is most closely linked to the areas of carbonate mineral undersaturation. These data link the Arctic Ocean’s largest area of aragonite undersaturation to sea ice melt and atmospheric CO2 absorption in areas of low buffering capacity. Some relatively supersaturated areas can be linked to localized biological activity. Collectively, these observations can be used to project trends of ocean acidification in higher latitude marine surface waters where inorganic carbon chemistry is largely influenced by sea ice meltwater.

  5. Comparison of soil derived tetraether membrane lipid distributions and plant-wax dD compositions for reconstruction of Canadian Arctic temperatures

    OpenAIRE

    Pautler, B.G.; Reichart, G.-J.; Sanborn, P.T.; Simpson, M. J.; J. W. H. Weijers

    2014-01-01

    Polar amplification of climate warming has received much attention as these rapidly rising temperatures have the potential to alter ecosystem function and biogeochemical cycles. In particular carbon preserved in Arctic tundra soil and permafrost may be especially vulnerable resulting in carbon cycle perturbations providing an additional positive feedback to climate change. Reliable methods for reconstructing past temperature changes in polar regions have been established from ice cores and ma...

  6. Arctic Cut-Off High Drives the Poleward Shift of a New Greenland Melting Record

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tedesco, M.; Mote, T.; Fettweis, X.; Hanna, E.; Jeyaratnam, J.; Booth, J. F.; Datta, R.; Briggs, K.

    2016-01-01

    Large-scale atmospheric circulation controls the mass and energy balance of the Greenland ice sheet through its impact on radiative budget, runoff and accumulation. Here, using reanalysis data and the outputs of a regional climate model, we show that the persistence of an exceptional atmospheric ridge, centered over the Arctic Ocean, was responsible for a poleward shift of runoff, albedo and surface temperature records over the Greenland during the summer of 2015. New records of monthly mean zonal winds at 500 hPa and of the maximum latitude of ridge peaks of the 5,700+/-50 m isohypse over the Arctic were associated with the formation and persistency of a cutoff high. The unprecedented (1948-2015) and sustained atmospheric conditions promoted enhanced runoff, increased the surface temperatures and decreased the albedo in northern Greenland, while inhibiting melting in the south, where new melting records were set over the past decade. Subject terms: Earth sciences Atmospheric science Climate science

  7. Arctic cut-off high drives the poleward shift of a new Greenland melting record.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tedesco, M; Mote, T; Fettweis, X; Hanna, E; Jeyaratnam, J; Booth, J F; Datta, R; Briggs, K

    2016-01-01

    Large-scale atmospheric circulation controls the mass and energy balance of the Greenland ice sheet through its impact on radiative budget, runoff and accumulation. Here, using reanalysis data and the outputs of a regional climate model, we show that the persistence of an exceptional atmospheric ridge, centred over the Arctic Ocean, was responsible for a poleward shift of runoff, albedo and surface temperature records over the Greenland during the summer of 2015. New records of monthly mean zonal winds at 500 hPa and of the maximum latitude of ridge peaks of the 5,700±50 m isohypse over the Arctic were associated with the formation and persistency of a cutoff high. The unprecedented (1948-2015) and sustained atmospheric conditions promoted enhanced runoff, increased the surface temperatures and decreased the albedo in northern Greenland, while inhibiting melting in the south, where new melting records were set over the past decade. PMID:27277547

  8. Evidence for slab material under Greenland and links to Cretaceous High Arctic magmatism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shephard, G. E.; Trønnes, R. G.; Spakman, W.; Panet, I.; Gaina, C.

    2016-04-01

    Understanding the evolution of extinct ocean basins through time and space demands the integration of surface kinematics and mantle dynamics. We explore the existence, origin, and implications of a proposed oceanic slab burial ground under Greenland through a comparison of seismic tomography, slab sinking rates, regional plate reconstructions, and satellite-derived gravity gradients. Our preferred interpretation stipulates that anomalous, fast seismic velocities at 1000-1600 km depth imaged in independent global tomographic models, coupled with gravity gradient perturbations, represent paleo-Arctic oceanic slabs that subducted in the Mesozoic. We suggest a novel connection between slab-related arc mantle and geochemical signatures in some of the tholeiitic and mildly alkaline magmas of the Cretaceous High Arctic Large Igneous Province in the Sverdrup Basin. However, continental crustal contributions are noted in these evolved basaltic rocks. The integration of independent, yet complementary, data sets provides insight into present-day mantle structure, magmatic events, and relict oceans.

  9. Intercomparison of passive microwave sea ice concentration retrievals over the high-concentration Arctic sea ice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    andersen, susanne; Tonboe, R.; Kaleschke, L.;

    2007-01-01

    [1] Measurements of sea ice concentration from the Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSM/I) using seven different algorithms are compared to ship observations, sea ice divergence estimates from the Radarsat Geophysical Processor System, and ice and water surface type classification of 59 wide......-swath synthetic aperture radar (SAR) scenes. The analysis is confined to the high-concentration Arctic sea ice, where the ice cover is near 100%. During winter the results indicate that the variability of the SSM/I concentration estimates is larger than the true variability of ice concentration. Results from...... a trusted subset of the SAR scenes across the central Arctic allow the separation of the ice concentration uncertainty due to emissivity variations and sensor noise from other error sources during the winter of 2003-2004. Depending on the algorithm, error standard deviations from 2.5 to 5.0% are found...

  10. Deeper snow alters soil nutrient availability and leaf nutrient status in high Arctic tundra

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Semenchuk, Philipp R.; Elberling, Bo; Amtorp, Cecilie;

    2015-01-01

    Nitrogen (N) mineralization, nutrient availability, and plant growth in the Arctic are often restricted by low temperatures. Predicted increases of cold-season temperatures may be important for plant nutrient availability and growth, given that N mineralization is also taking place during the cold...... season. Changing nutrient availability may be reflected in plant N and chlorophyll content and lead to increased photosynthetic capacity, plant growth, and ultimately carbon (C) assimilation by plants. In this study, we increased snow depth and thereby cold-season soil temperatures in high Arctic...... vegetation types, but the leaf sizes were unchanged. Leaves of Bistorta and Luzula were significantly larger but only significantly so in one moist vegetation type. Increased N and chlorophyll concentrations in leaves indicate a potential for increased growth (C uptake), supported by large leaf sizes...

  11. Arctic cut-off high drives the poleward shift of a new Greenland melting record

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tedesco, M.; Mote, T.; Fettweis, X.; Hanna, E.; Jeyaratnam, J.; Booth, J. F.; Datta, R.; Briggs, K.

    2016-06-01

    Large-scale atmospheric circulation controls the mass and energy balance of the Greenland ice sheet through its impact on radiative budget, runoff and accumulation. Here, using reanalysis data and the outputs of a regional climate model, we show that the persistence of an exceptional atmospheric ridge, centred over the Arctic Ocean, was responsible for a poleward shift of runoff, albedo and surface temperature records over the Greenland during the summer of 2015. New records of monthly mean zonal winds at 500 hPa and of the maximum latitude of ridge peaks of the 5,700+/-50 m isohypse over the Arctic were associated with the formation and persistency of a cutoff high. The unprecedented (1948-2015) and sustained atmospheric conditions promoted enhanced runoff, increased the surface temperatures and decreased the albedo in northern Greenland, while inhibiting melting in the south, where new melting records were set over the past decade.

  12. Low Density of Top Predators (Seabirds and Marine Mammals in the High Arctic Pack Ice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claude R. Joiris

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The at-sea distribution of top predators, seabirds and marine mammals, was determined in the high Arctic pack ice on board the icebreaker RV Polarstern in July to September 2014. In total, 1,620 transect counts were realised, lasting 30 min each. The five most numerous seabird species represented 74% of the total of 15,150 individuals registered: kittiwake Rissa tridactyla, fulmar Fulmarus glacialis, puffin Fratercula arctica, Ross’s gull Rhodostethia rosea, and little auk Alle alle. Eight cetacean species were tallied for a total of 330 individuals, mainly white-beaked dolphin Lagenorhynchus albirostris and fin whale Balaenoptera physalus. Five pinniped species were represented by a total of 55 individuals and the polar bear Ursus maritimus was represented by 12 individuals. Four main geographical zones were identified: from Tromsø to the outer marginal ice zone (OMIZ, the Arctic pack ice (close pack ice, CPI, the end of Lomonosov Ridge off Siberia, and the route off Siberia and northern Norway. Important differences were detected between zones, both in species composition and in individual abundance. Low numbers of species and high proportion of individuals for some of them can be considered to reflect very low biodiversity. Numbers encountered in zones 2 to 4 were very low in comparison with other European Arctic seas. The observed differences showed strong patterns.

  13. Local variability in growth and reproduction of Salix arctica in the High Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Noémie Boulanger-Lapointe

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Arctic terrestrial ecosystems are heterogeneous because of the strong influences of microtopography, soil moisture and snow accumulation on vegetation distribution. The interaction between local biotic and abiotic factors and global climate patterns will influence species responses to climate change. Salix arctica (Arctic willow is a structuring species, ubiquitous and widespread, and as such is one of the most important shrub species in the High Arctic. In this study, we measured S. arctica reproductive effort, early establishment, survival and growth in the Zackenberg valley, north-east Greenland. We sampled four plant communities that varied with respect to snow conditions, soil moisture, nutrient content and plant composition. We found large variability in reproductive effort and success with total catkin density ranging from 0.6 to 66 catkins/m2 and seedling density from <1 to 101 seedlings/m2. There were also major differences in crown area increment (4–23 cm2/year and stem radial growth (40–74 µm/year. The snowbed community, which experienced a recent reduction in snow cover, supported young populations with high reproductive effort, establishment and growth. Soil nutrient content and herbivore activity apparently did not strongly constrain plant reproduction and growth, but competition by Cassiope tetragona and low soil moisture may inhibit performance. Our results show that local environmental factors, such as snow accumulation, have a significant impact on tundra plant response to climate change and will affect the understanding of regional vegetation response to climate change.

  14. Importance of Marine-Derived Nutrients Supplied by Planktivorous Seabirds to High Arctic Tundra Plant Communities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwolicki, Adrian; Zmudczyńska-Skarbek, Katarzyna; Richard, Pierre; Stempniewicz, Lech

    2016-01-01

    We studied the relative importance of several environmental factors for tundra plant communities in five locations across Svalbard (High Arctic) that differed in geographical location, oceanographic and climatic influence, and soil characteristics. The amount of marine-derived nitrogen in the soil supplied by seabirds was locally the most important of the studied environmental factors influencing the tundra plant community. We found a strong positive correlation between δ15N isotopic values and total N content in the soil, confirming the fundamental role of marine-derived matter to the generally nutrient-poor Arctic tundra ecosystem. We also recorded a strong correlation between the δ15N values of soil and of the tissues of vascular plants and mosses, but not of lichens. The relationship between soil δ15N values and vascular plant cover was linear. In the case of mosses, the percentage ground cover reached maximum around a soil δ 15N value of 8‰, as did plant community diversity. This soil δ15N value clearly separated the occurrence of plants with low nitrogen tolerance (e.g. Salix polaris) from those predominating on high N content soils (e.g. Cerastium arcticum, Poa alpina). Large colonies of planktivorous little auks have a great influence on Arctic tundra vegetation, either through enhancing plant abundance or in shaping plant community composition at a local scale. PMID:27149113

  15. Importance of Marine-Derived Nutrients Supplied by Planktivorous Seabirds to High Arctic Tundra Plant Communities.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adrian Zwolicki

    Full Text Available We studied the relative importance of several environmental factors for tundra plant communities in five locations across Svalbard (High Arctic that differed in geographical location, oceanographic and climatic influence, and soil characteristics. The amount of marine-derived nitrogen in the soil supplied by seabirds was locally the most important of the studied environmental factors influencing the tundra plant community. We found a strong positive correlation between δ15N isotopic values and total N content in the soil, confirming the fundamental role of marine-derived matter to the generally nutrient-poor Arctic tundra ecosystem. We also recorded a strong correlation between the δ15N values of soil and of the tissues of vascular plants and mosses, but not of lichens. The relationship between soil δ15N values and vascular plant cover was linear. In the case of mosses, the percentage ground cover reached maximum around a soil δ 15N value of 8‰, as did plant community diversity. This soil δ15N value clearly separated the occurrence of plants with low nitrogen tolerance (e.g. Salix polaris from those predominating on high N content soils (e.g. Cerastium arcticum, Poa alpina. Large colonies of planktivorous little auks have a great influence on Arctic tundra vegetation, either through enhancing plant abundance or in shaping plant community composition at a local scale.

  16. Importance of Marine-Derived Nutrients Supplied by Planktivorous Seabirds to High Arctic Tundra Plant Communities.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zwolicki, Adrian; Zmudczyńska-Skarbek, Katarzyna; Richard, Pierre; Stempniewicz, Lech

    2016-01-01

    We studied the relative importance of several environmental factors for tundra plant communities in five locations across Svalbard (High Arctic) that differed in geographical location, oceanographic and climatic influence, and soil characteristics. The amount of marine-derived nitrogen in the soil supplied by seabirds was locally the most important of the studied environmental factors influencing the tundra plant community. We found a strong positive correlation between δ15N isotopic values and total N content in the soil, confirming the fundamental role of marine-derived matter to the generally nutrient-poor Arctic tundra ecosystem. We also recorded a strong correlation between the δ15N values of soil and of the tissues of vascular plants and mosses, but not of lichens. The relationship between soil δ15N values and vascular plant cover was linear. In the case of mosses, the percentage ground cover reached maximum around a soil δ 15N value of 8‰, as did plant community diversity. This soil δ15N value clearly separated the occurrence of plants with low nitrogen tolerance (e.g. Salix polaris) from those predominating on high N content soils (e.g. Cerastium arcticum, Poa alpina). Large colonies of planktivorous little auks have a great influence on Arctic tundra vegetation, either through enhancing plant abundance or in shaping plant community composition at a local scale. PMID:27149113

  17. Large herbivore grazing affects the vegetation structure and greenhouse gas balance in a high arctic mire

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Herbivory is an important part of most ecosystems and affects the ecosystems’ carbon balance both directly and indirectly. Little is known about herbivory and its impact on the carbon balance in high arctic mire ecosystems. We hypothesized that trampling and grazing by large herbivores influences the vegetation density and composition and thereby also the carbon balance. In 2010, we established fenced exclosures in high arctic Greenland to prevent muskoxen (Ovibos moschatus) from grazing. During the growing seasons of 2011 to 2013 we measured CO2 and CH4 fluxes in these ungrazed blocks and compared them to blocks subjected to natural grazing. Additionally, we measured depth of the water table and active layer, soil temperature, and in 2011 and 2013 an inventory of the vegetation density and composition were made. In 2013 a significant decrease in total number of vascular plant (33–44%) and Eriophorum scheuchzeri (51–53%) tillers were found in ungrazed plots, the moss-layer and amount of litter had also increased substantially in these plots. This resulted in a significant decrease in net ecosystem uptake of CO2 (47%) and likewise a decrease in CH4 emission (44%) in ungrazed plots in 2013. While the future of the muskoxen in a changing arctic is unknown, this experiment points to a potentially large effect of large herbivores on the carbon balance in natural Arctic ecosystems. It thus sheds light on the importance of grazing mammals, and hence adds to our understanding of natural ecosystem greenhouse gas balance in the past and in the future. (letter)

  18. Leading By Example: Canada and its Arctic Stewardship Role

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Burke, Danita Catherine

    2016-01-01

    The notion that Canada is the steward of the fragile Arctic environment is a part of the fabric of the Canadian narrative about the country’s relationship with the Arctic region. In light of political, legal and environmental changes impacting Arctic politics, this paper argues that it is importa...

  19. COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH: TOWARDS ADVANCED UNDERSTANDING AND PREDICTIVE CAPABILITY OF CLIMATE CHANGE IN THE ARCTIC USING A HIGH-RESOLUTION REGIONAL ARCTIC CLIMATE SYSTEM MODEL

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gutowski, William J.

    2013-02-07

    The motivation for this project was to advance the science of climate change and prediction in the Arctic region. Its primary goals were to (i) develop a state-of-the-art Regional Arctic Climate system Model (RACM) including high-resolution atmosphere, land, ocean, sea ice and land hydrology components and (ii) to perform extended numerical experiments using high performance computers to minimize uncertainties and fundamentally improve current predictions of climate change in the northern polar regions. These goals were realized first through evaluation studies of climate system components via one-way coupling experiments. Simulations were then used to examine the effects of advancements in climate component systems on their representation of main physics, time-mean fields and to understand variability signals at scales over many years. As such this research directly addressed some of the major science objectives of the BER Climate Change Research Division (CCRD) regarding the advancement of long-term climate prediction.

  20. Bird orientation at high latitudes: flight routes between Siberia and North America across the Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alerstam; Gudmundsson

    1999-12-22

    Bird migration and orientation at high latitudes are of special interest because of the difficulties associated with different compass systems in polar areas and because of the considerable differences between flight routes conforming to loxodromes (rhumblines) or orthodromes (great circle routes). Regular and widespread east-north-east migration of birds from the northern tundra of Siberia towards North America across the Arctic Ocean (without landmark influences) were recorded by ship-based tracking radar studies in July and August. Field observations indicated that waders, including species such as Phalaropusfulicarius and Calidris melanotos, dominated, but also terns and skuas may have been involved. Analysis of flight directions in relation to the wind showed that these movements are not caused by wind drift. Assuming possible orientation principles based on celestial or geomagnetic cues, different flight trajectories across the Arctic Ocean were calculated: geographical loxodromes, sun compass routes, magnetic loxodromes and magnetoclinic routes. The probabilities of these four alternatives are evaluated on the basis of both the availability of required orientation cues and the predicted flight paths. This evaluation supports orientation along sun compass routes. Because of the longitudinal time displacement sun compass routes show gradually changing compass courses in close agreement with orthodromes. It is suggested that an important migration link between Siberia and North American stopover sites 1000-2500km apart across the Arctic Ocean has evolved based on sun compass orientation along orthodrome-like routes. PMID:10693821

  1. Single-particle characterization of the high-Arctic summertime aerosol

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    B. Sierau

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Single-particle mass-spectrometric measurements were carried out in the high Arctic north of 80° during summer 2008. The campaign took place onboard the icebreaker Oden and was part of the Arctic Summer Cloud Ocean Study (ASCOS. The instrument deployed was an aerosol time-of-flight mass spectrometer (ATOFMS that provides information on the chemical composition of individual particles and their mixing state in real time. Aerosols were sampled in the marine boundary layer at stations in the open ocean, in the marginal ice zone, and in the pack ice region. The largest fraction of particles detected for subsequent analysis in the size range of the ATOFMS between approximately 200 and 3000 nm in diameter showed mass-spectrometric patterns, indicating an internal mixing state and a biomass burning and/or biofuel source. The majority of these particles were connected to an air mass layer of elevated particle concentration mixed into the surface mixed layer from the upper part of the marine boundary layer. The second largest fraction was represented by sea salt particles. The chemical analysis of the over-ice sea salt aerosol revealed tracer compounds that reflect chemical aging of the particles during their long-range advection from the marginal ice zone, or open waters south thereof prior to detection at the ship. From our findings we conclude that long-range transport of particles is one source of aerosols in the high Arctic. To assess the importance of long-range particle sources for aerosol–cloud interactions over the inner Arctic in comparison to local and regional biogenic primary aerosol sources, the chemical composition of the detected particles was analyzed for indicators of marine biological origin. Only a minor fraction showed chemical signatures of potentially ocean-derived primary particles of that kind. However, a chemical bias in the ATOFMS's detection capabilities observed during ASCOS might suggest the presence of a particle type of

  2. Canadian advanced life support capacities and future directions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bamsey, M.; Graham, T.; Stasiak, M.; Berinstain, A.; Scott, A.; Vuk, T. Rondeau; Dixon, M.

    2009-07-01

    Canada began research on space-relevant biological life support systems in the early 1990s. Since that time Canadian capabilities have grown tremendously, placing Canada among the emerging leaders in biological life support systems. The rapid growth of Canadian expertise has been the result of several factors including a large and technically sophisticated greenhouse sector which successfully operates under challenging climatic conditions, well planned technology transfer strategies between the academic and industrial sectors, and a strong emphasis on international research collaborations. Recent activities such as Canada's contribution of the Higher Plant Compartment of the European Space Agency's MELiSSA Pilot Plant and the remote operation of the Arthur Clarke Mars Greenhouse in the Canadian High Arctic continue to demonstrate Canadian capabilities with direct applicability to advanced life support systems. There is also a significant latent potential within Canadian institutions and organizations with respect to directly applicable advanced life support technologies. These directly applicable research interests include such areas as horticultural management strategies (for candidate crops), growth media, food processing, water management, atmosphere management, energy management, waste management, imaging, environment sensors, thermal control, lighting systems, robotics, command and data handling, communications systems, structures, in-situ resource utilization, space analogues and mission operations. With this background and in collaboration with the Canadian aerospace industry sector, a roadmap for future life support contributions is presented here. This roadmap targets an objective of at least 50% food closure by 2050 (providing greater closure in oxygen, water recycling and carbon dioxide uptake). The Canadian advanced life support community has chosen to focus on lunar surface infrastructure and not low Earth orbit or transit systems (i.e. microgravity

  3. [PATTERNS IN CIRCULATION AND TRANSMISSION OF MARINE BIRD PARASITES IN HIGH ARCTIC: A CASE OF ACANTHOCEPHALAN POLYMORPHUS PHIPPSI (PALAEACANTHOCEPHALA, POLYMORPHIDAE)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galaktionov, K V; Atrashkevich, G I

    2015-01-01

    This study, based on the materials on parasitic infection of marine birds and invertebrates in Frantz Josef Land (FJL) collected in 1991-1993, focussed on the acanthocephalan Polymorphus phippsi. We identified this parasite, confirmed its species status and analysed its circulation and transmission patterns in high Arctic. The causes of its erroneous identification as P. minutus in several studies were also examined. In contrast to P. minutus, the transmission of P. phippsi is realized in marine coastal ecosystems. Its' main intermediate host in the Arctic is the amphipod Gammarus (Lagunogammarus) setosus, commonin coastal. areas of the shelf zone throughout the Arctic basin. P. phippsi population in FJL and the entire European Arctic is on the whole maintained by a single obligate final host, the common eider Somateria mollissima. Prevalence (P) of P. phippsi in this bird reached 100 %, with the maximal infection intensity (IImax) of 1188 and the mean abundance (MA) of 492.1. Other species of birds found to be infected with P. phippsi (Arctic turn, black guillemot, purple sandpiper and several gulls) are facultative and/or eliminative hosts. The most heavily infected birds were Arctic terns (P = 72.7%, IImax = 227, MA = = 47.1), which contained single mature acanthocephalans. For one of the FJL regions, infections flows of P. phippsi through various host categories were calculated. Involvement of birds unrelated to the common eider into the circulation of P. phippsi is facilitated by their feeding character in the Arctic. While coastal crustaceans are abundant, fish food is relatively scarce (polar cod, snailfishes), and so amphipods make up a considerable part of the diet of marine birds in FJL, if not most of it, as for instance in case of Arctic tern. This promotes an easy entry of the larvae of crustaceans-parasitizing helminthes (cestodes and acanthocephalans, including cystacanths P. phippsi) into non-specific hosts and opens broad colonization possibilities

  4. Microarray and real-time PCR analyses of the responses of high-arctic soil bacteria to hydrocarbon pollution and bioremediation treatments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yergeau, Etienne; Arbour, Mélanie; Brousseau, Roland; Juck, David; Lawrence, John R; Masson, Luke; Whyte, Lyle G; Greer, Charles W

    2009-10-01

    High-Arctic soils have low nutrient availability, low moisture content, and very low temperatures and, as such, they pose a particular problem in terms of hydrocarbon bioremediation. An in-depth knowledge of the microbiology involved in this process is likely to be crucial to understand and optimize the factors most influencing bioremediation. Here, we compared two distinct large-scale field bioremediation experiments, located at the Canadian high-Arctic stations of Alert (ex situ approach) and Eureka (in situ approach). Bacterial community structure and function were assessed using microarrays targeting the 16S rRNA genes of bacteria found in cold environments and hydrocarbon degradation genes as well as quantitative reverse transcriptase PCR targeting key functional genes. The results indicated a large difference between sampling sites in terms of both soil microbiology and decontamination rates. A rapid reorganization of the bacterial community structure and functional potential as well as rapid increases in the expression of alkane monooxygenases and polyaromatic hydrocarbon-ring-hydroxylating dioxygenases were observed 1 month after the bioremediation treatment commenced in the Alert soils. In contrast, no clear changes in community structure were observed in Eureka soils, while key gene expression increased after a relatively long lag period (1 year). Such discrepancies are likely caused by differences in bioremediation treatments (i.e., ex situ versus in situ), weathering of the hydrocarbons, indigenous microbial communities, and environmental factors such as soil humidity and temperature. In addition, this study demonstrates the value of molecular tools for the monitoring of polar bacteria and their associated functions during bioremediation. PMID:19684169

  5. Scrupulosity in Islam: a comparison of highly religious Turkish and Canadian samples.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inozu, Mujgan; Clark, David A; Karanci, A Nuray

    2012-03-01

    Scrupulosity is a form of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) characterized by a tendency to have persistent doubts about God, sin, and the adequacy of one's religious behaviors and devotion. To date, no published studies have compared scrupulosity in high- and low-religious Muslim and Christian samples. In the present study religious school students as well as high- and low-religious university students in Turkey and Canada were compared on the Penn Inventory of Scrupulosity (PIOS), Obsessive Beliefs Questionnaire (OBQ-44), and symptom measures of obssesionality and negative affect. Between-group comparisons revealed that the highly religious Turkish sample scored significantly higher than the highly religious Canadian students on the PIOS Fear of God but not the Fear of Sin subscale. Separate multiple regression analyses revealed that the Clark-Beck Obsessive Compulsive Inventory (CBOCI) Obsessions subscale, OBQ-44 Importance and Control of Thoughts subscale, and guilt were significant unique predictors of PIOS scrupulosity. These findings suggest that subtle differences exist in how scrupulosity is manifested in Islamic and Christian believers.

  6. Is Ambient Light during the High Arctic Polar Night Sufficient to Act as a Visual Cue for Zooplankton?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan H Cohen

    Full Text Available The light regime is an ecologically important factor in pelagic habitats, influencing a range of biological processes. However, the availability and importance of light to these processes in high Arctic zooplankton communities during periods of 'complete' darkness (polar night are poorly studied. Here we characterized the ambient light regime throughout the diel cycle during the high Arctic polar night, and ask whether visual systems of Arctic zooplankton can detect the low levels of irradiance available at this time. To this end, light measurements with a purpose-built irradiance sensor and coupled all-sky digital photographs were used to characterize diel skylight irradiance patterns over 24 hours at 79°N in January 2014 and 2015. Subsequent skylight spectral irradiance and in-water optical property measurements were used to model the underwater light field as a function of depth, which was then weighted by the electrophysiologically determined visual spectral sensitivity of a dominant high Arctic zooplankter, Thysanoessa inermis. Irradiance in air ranged between 1-1.5 x 10-5 μmol photons m-2 s-1 (400-700 nm in clear weather conditions at noon and with the moon below the horizon, hence values reflect only solar illumination. Radiative transfer modelling generated underwater light fields with peak transmission at blue-green wavelengths, with a 465 nm transmission maximum in shallow water shifting to 485 nm with depth. To the eye of a zooplankter, light from the surface to 75 m exhibits a maximum at 485 nm, with longer wavelengths (>600 nm being of little visual significance. Our data are the first quantitative characterisation, including absolute intensities, spectral composition and photoperiod of biologically relevant solar ambient light in the high Arctic during the polar night, and indicate that some species of Arctic zooplankton are able to detect and utilize ambient light down to 20-30m depth during the Arctic polar night.

  7. The net exchange of methane with high Arctic landscapes during the summer growing season

    Science.gov (United States)

    St Louis, V. L.; Emmerton, C. A.; Lehnherr, I.; Humphreys, E.; Rydz, E.; Kosolofski, H.

    2014-12-01

    High Arctic landscapes are essentially vast cold deserts interspersed with streams, ponds and wetlands. These landscapes may be important consumers and sources of the greenhouse gas methane (CH4), though few measurements exist from this region. To quantify the flux of CH4 (FCH4) between the atmosphere and high Arctic landscapes on northern Ellesmere Island, Canada, we made static chamber measurements over five and three growing seasons at a desert and wetland, respectively, and eddy covariance (EC) measurements at a wetland in 2012. Chamber measurements revealed that, during the growing season, desert soils consumed CH4 (-1.37±0.06 mg- CH4 m-2 d-1), whereas the wetland margin emitted CH4 (+0.22±0.14 mg- CH4 m-2 d-1). Desert CH4 consumption rates were positively associated with soil temperature among years, and were similar to temperate locations, likely because of suitable landscape conditions for soil gas diffusion. Wetland FCH4 varied closely with stream discharge entering the wetland and hence extent of soil saturation. Landscape-scale FCH4 measured by EC was +1.27±0.18 mg- CH4 m-2 d-1 and varied with soil temperature and carbon dioxide flux. FCH4 measured using EC was higher than using chambers because EC measurements incorporated a larger, more saturated footprint of the wetland. Using EC FCH4 and quantifying the mass of CH4 entering and exiting the wetland in stream water, we determined that methanogenesis within wetland soils was the dominant source of FCH4. Low FCH4 at the wetland was likely due to a shallow organic soil layer, and thus limited carbon resources for methanogens. Considering the prevalence of dry soils in the high Arctic, our results suggest that these landscapes cannot be overlooked as important consumers of atmospheric CH4.

  8. Enantioselective bioaccumulation of hexabromocyclododecane and congener-specific accumulation of brominated diphenyl ethers in an eastern Canadian Arctic marine food web.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomy, Gregg T; Pleskach, Kerri; Oswald, Tyler; Halldorson, Thor; Helm, Paul A; MacInnis, Gordia; Marvin, Chris H

    2008-05-15

    The extent of trophic transfer of the three diastereoisomers of hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD) and seven brominated diphenyl ether (BDE) congeners was examined in components of an Arctic marine food web from eastern Canada. Alpha and gamma-HBCD diastereoisomers were detected in all species and total (sigma) HBCD concentrations ranged from 0.6 +/- 0.2 pg/g (geometric mean +/- 1 x standard error (SE), lipid weight (lw)) in arctic cod to 3.9 +/- 0.9 ng/g (lw) in narwhal. beta-HBCD was below method detection limits in all the samples. Mean sigmaBDE (sum of seven congeners) concentrations ranged from 0.4 +/- 0.2 ng/g (lw) in walrus to 73 +/- 10 ng/g (lw) in zooplankton. The relative trophic status of biota was determined by nitrogen stable isotopes (delta15N), and results indicated clear differences in HBCD isomer and BDE congener profiles with trophic level (TL). Trophic magnification was observed for the alpha-diastereoisomer and BDE-47 as concentrations increased with increasing TL in the food web, whereas there was trophic dilution of gamma-HBCD and BDE-209 through the food web. Only the (-)alpha-enantiomer showed a strong positive relationship between concentration and TL (p trophic magnification factor (TMF) value of 2.2. A small but significant increase in the enantiomeric fraction value of the alpha-enantiomers with TL was also observed (r2 = 0.22, p < 0.005), implying that there is an overall preferential enrichment of the (-)alpha-enantiomer relative to the (+)alpha-enantiomer likely due to the greater bioaccumulation potential of the (-)alpha-enantiomer and/or to the greater susceptibility of the (+)alpha-enantiomer to metabolism. PMID:18546701

  9. Diversification of Nitrogen Sources in Various Tundra Vegetation Types in the High Arctic.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grzegorz Skrzypek

    Full Text Available Low nitrogen availability in the high Arctic represents a major constraint for plant growth, which limits the tundra capacity for carbon retention and determines tundra vegetation types. The limited terrestrial nitrogen (N pool in the tundra is augmented significantly by nesting seabirds, such as the planktivorous Little Auk (Alle alle. Therefore, N delivered by these birds may significantly influence the N cycling in the tundra locally and the carbon budget more globally. Moreover, should these birds experience substantial negative environmental pressure associated with climate change, this will adversely influence the tundra N-budget. Hence, assessment of bird-originated N-input to the tundra is important for understanding biological cycles in polar regions. This study analyzed the stable nitrogen composition of the three main N-sources in the High Arctic and in numerous plants that access different N-pools in ten tundra vegetation types in an experimental catchment in Hornsund (Svalbard. The percentage of the total tundra N-pool provided by birds, ranged from 0-21% in Patterned-ground tundra to 100% in Ornithocoprophilous tundra. The total N-pool utilized by tundra plants in the studied catchment was built in 36% by birds, 38% by atmospheric deposition, and 26% by atmospheric N2-fixation. The stable nitrogen isotope mixing mass balance, in contrast to direct methods that measure actual deposition, indicates the ratio between the actual N-loads acquired by plants from different N-sources. Our results enhance our understanding of the importance of different N-sources in the Arctic tundra and the used methodological approach can be applied elsewhere.

  10. Warmer and wetter winters: characteristics and implications of an extreme weather event in the High Arctic

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    One predicted consequence of global warming is an increased frequency of extreme weather events, such as heat waves, droughts, or heavy rainfalls. In parts of the Arctic, extreme warm spells and heavy rain-on-snow (ROS) events in winter are already more frequent. How these weather events impact snow-pack and permafrost characteristics is rarely documented empirically, and the implications for wildlife and society are hence far from understood. Here we characterize and document the effects of an extreme warm spell and ROS event that occurred in High Arctic Svalbard in January–February 2012, during the polar night. In this normally cold semi-desert environment, we recorded above-zero temperatures (up to 7 °C) across the entire archipelago and record-breaking precipitation, with up to 98 mm rainfall in one day (return period of >500 years prior to this event) and 272 mm over the two-week long warm spell. These precipitation amounts are equivalent to 25 and 70% respectively of the mean annual total precipitation. The extreme event caused significant increase in permafrost temperatures down to at least 5 m depth, induced slush avalanches with resultant damage to infrastructure, and left a significant ground-ice cover (∼5–20 cm thick basal ice). The ground-ice not only affected inhabitants by closing roads and airports as well as reducing mobility and thereby tourism income, but it also led to high starvation-induced mortality in all monitored populations of the wild reindeer by blocking access to the winter food source. Based on empirical-statistical downscaling of global climate models run under the moderate RCP4.5 emission scenario, we predict strong future warming with average mid-winter temperatures even approaching 0 °C, suggesting increased frequency of ROS. This will have far-reaching implications for Arctic ecosystems and societies through the changes in snow-pack and permafrost properties. (letter)

  11. On the chemical dynamics of extracellular polysaccharides in the high Arctic surface microlayer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Q.; Leck, C.; Rauschenberg, C.; Matrai, P. A.

    2012-07-01

    The surface microlayer (SML) represents a unique system of which the physicochemical characteristics may differ from those of the underlying subsurface seawater (SSW). Within the Arctic pack ice area, the SML has been characterized as enriched in small colloids of biological origin, resulting from extracellular polymeric secretions (EPS). During the Arctic Summer Cloud Ocean Study (ASCOS) in August 2008, particulate organic matter (POM, with size range > 0.22 μm) and dissolved organic matter (DOM, fucose and glucose. The mean concentrations of total hydrolysable neutral sugars in SSW were 94.9 ± 37.5 nM in high molecular weight (HMW) DOM (> 5 kDa) and 64.4 ± 14.5 nM in POM. The enrichment of polysaccharides in the SML appeared to be a common feature, with EFs ranging from 1.7 to 7.0 for particulate polysaccharides and 3.5 to 12.1 for polysaccharides in the HMW DOM fraction. A calculated monosaccharide yield suggests that polymers in the HMW DOM fraction were scavenged, without substantial degradation, into the SML. Bubble scavenging experiments showed that newly aggregated particles could be formed abiotically by coagulation of low molecular weight nanometer-sized gels. Aerosol particles, artificially generated by bubbling experiments, were enriched in polysaccharides by factors of 22-70, relative to the source seawater. We propose that bubble scavenging of surface-active polysaccharides could be one of the possible mechanisms for the enrichment of polysaccharides in the high Arctic open lead SML.

  12. Early Paleogene Arctic terrestrial ecosystems affected by the change of polar hydrology under global warming:Implications for modern climate change at high latitudes

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Gaytha; A.; LANGLOIS

    2010-01-01

    Our understanding of both the role and impact of Arctic environmental changes under the current global warming climate is rather limited despite efforts of improved monitoring and wider assessment through remote sensing technology. Changes of Arctic ecosystems under early Paleogene warming climate provide an analogue to evaluate long-term responses of Arctic environmental alteration to global warming. This study reviews Arctic terrestrial ecosystems and their transformation under marked change of hydrological conditions during the warmest period in early Cenozoic, the Paleocene and Eocene. We describe a new approach to quantitatively reconstruct high latitudinal paleohydrology using compound-specific hydrogen isotope analysis which applies empirically derived genus-specific hydrogen isotope fractionations to in situ biomolecules from fossil plants. We propose a moisture recycling model at the Arctic to explain the reconstructed hydrogen isotope signals of ancient high latitude precipitation during early Paleogene, which bears implications to the likely change of modern Arctic ecosystems under the projected accelerated global warming.

  13. High tolerance of protozooplankton to ocean acidification in an Arctic coastal plankton community

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aberle, N.; Schulz, K. G.; Stuhr, A.; Ludwig, A.; Riebesell, U.

    2012-09-01

    Impacts of ocean acidification (OA) on marine biota have been observed in a wide range of marine systems. We used a mesocosm approach to study the response of a high Arctic coastal protozooplankton (PZP in the following) community during the post-bloom period in the Kongsfjorden (Svalbard) to direct and indirect effects of high pCO2/low pH. We found almost no direct effects of OA on PZP composition and diversity. Both, the relative shares of ciliates and heterotrophic dinoflagellates as well as the taxonomic composition of protozoans remained unaffected by changes in pCO2/pH. The different pCO2 treatments did not have any effect on food availability and phytoplankton composition and thus no indirect effects e.g. on the total carrying capacity and phenology of PZP could be observed. Our data points at a high tolerance of this Arctic PZP community to changes in pCO2/pH. Future studies on the impact of OA on plankton communities should include PZP in order to test whether the observed low sensitivity of protozoans to OA is typical for coastal communities where changes in seawater pH occur frequently.

  14. High tolerance of protozooplankton to ocean acidification in an Arctic coastal plankton community

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. Aberle

    2012-09-01

    Full Text Available Impacts of ocean acidification (OA on marine biota have been observed in a wide range of marine systems. We used a mesocosm approach to study the response of a high Arctic coastal protozooplankton (PZP in the following community during the post-bloom period in the Kongsfjorden (Svalbard to direct and indirect effects of high pCO2/low pH. We found almost no direct effects of OA on PZP composition and diversity. Both, the relative shares of ciliates and heterotrophic dinoflagellates as well as the taxonomic composition of protozoans remained unaffected by changes in pCO2/pH. The different pCO2 treatments did not have any effect on food availability and phytoplankton composition and thus no indirect effects e.g. on the total carrying capacity and phenology of PZP could be observed. Our data points at a high tolerance of this Arctic PZP community to changes in pCO2/pH. Future studies on the impact of OA on plankton communities should include PZP in order to test whether the observed low sensitivity of protozoans to OA is typical for coastal communities where changes in seawater pH occur frequently.

  15. Nitrous oxide production and emission in high arctic soils of NW Greenland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stills, A.; Lupascu, M.; Czimczik, C. I.; Sharp, E. D.; Welker, J. M.; Schaeffer, S. M.

    2010-12-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O) is a potent ozone depleting greenhouse gas with a global warming potential 298 times larger than carbon dioxide (CO2 on a 100-year time scale. Recent studies identified arctic soils undergoing thawing and changes in drainage as potentially large sources of N2O to the atmosphere. More in situ2O production in and emission from arctic soils are needed to understand ecosystem feedbacks to climate change in high arctic tundra, and the role of high latitudes in the global N2O budget. We monitored the concentration of N2O in soils and emissions of N2O to the atmosphere from prostrate shrub tundra in NW Greenland under current and future climate conditions. Measurements were made monthly from June to August 2010 at a long-term climate change experiment started in 2003 consisting of +2oC warming (T1), +4oC warming (T2), +50% summer precipitation (W), +4oC × +50% summer precipitation (T2W), and control (C). In each treatment, N2O was monitored from vegetated and barren soils. In addition, we quantified nitrogen (N) mineralization rates. The concentration of N2O in soils was measured by sampling air from permanent wells ranging from 20 to 90 cm soil depth. N2O emissions were measured every 15 minutes for one hour using opaque, static chambers. Nitrous oxide samples were collected manually with syringes and stored in pre-evacuated glass vials with butyl rubber septa and aluminum crimp. The vials were sealed with silicon, shipped to UC Irvine, and analyzed by GC-ECD (Shimadzu GC-2014). To determine soil N mineralization rates, resin bags were installed under PVC cores from 8 to 10 cm in early spring in all treatments. Bags were removed at peak season. A second set was installed to capture end-of-season mineralization rates. Resin bags were extracted for future analysis of total accumulated ammonium and nitrate. Soil cores concurrently collected with resin bag installation and removal will be analyzed for % C and N, and were extracted for future analysis of

  16. On the chemical dynamics of extracellular polysaccharides in the high Arctic surface microlayer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Q. Gao

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available The surface microlayer (SML represents a unique system of which the physicochemical characteristics may differ from those of the underlying subsurface seawater (SSW. Within the Arctic pack ice area, the SML has been characterized as enriched in small colloids of biological origin, resulting from extracellular polymeric secretions (EPS. During the Arctic Summer Cloud Ocean Study (ASCOS in August 2008, particulate organic matter (POM, with size range > 0.22 μm and dissolved organic matter (DOM, < 0.22 μm, obtained after filtration samples were collected and chemically characterized from the SML and the corresponding SSW at an open lead centered at 87.5° N and 5° E. Total organic carbon was persistently enriched in the SML with a mean enrichment factor (EF of 1.45 ± 0.41, whereas sporadic depletions of dissolved carbohydrates and amino acids were observed. Monosaccharide compositional analysis reveals that EPS in the Arctic lead was formed mainly of distinctive heteropolysaccharides, enriched in xylose, fucose and glucose. The mean concentrations of total hydrolysable neutral sugars in SSW were 94.9 ± 37.5 nM in high molecular weight (HMW DOM (> 5 kDa and 64.4 ± 14.5 nM in POM. The enrichment of polysaccharides in the SML appeared to be a common feature, with EFs ranging from 1.7 to 7.0 for particulate polysaccharides and 3.5 to 12.1 for polysaccharides in the HMW DOM fraction. A calculated monosaccharide yield suggests that polymers in the HMW DOM fraction were scavenged, without substantial degradation, into the SML. Bubble scavenging experiments showed that newly aggregated particles could be formed abiotically by coagulation of low molecular weight nanometer-sized gels. Aerosol particles, artificially generated by bubbling experiments, were enriched in polysaccharides by factors of 22–70, relative to the source seawater. We propose that bubble scavenging of surface-active polysaccharides could be one of the possible mechanisms for the

  17. Nitrogen accumulation and partitioning in a High Arctic tundra ecosystem from extreme atmospheric N deposition events.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choudhary, Sonal; Blaud, Aimeric; Osborn, A Mark; Press, Malcolm C; Phoenix, Gareth K

    2016-06-01

    Arctic ecosystems are threatened by pollution from recently detected extreme atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition events in which up to 90% of the annual N deposition can occur in just a few days. We undertook the first assessment of the fate of N from extreme deposition in High Arctic tundra and are presenting the results from the whole ecosystem (15)N labelling experiment. In 2010, we simulated N depositions at rates of 0, 0.04, 0.4 and 1.2 g Nm(-2)yr(-1), applied as (15)NH4(15)NO3 in Svalbard (79(°)N), during the summer. Separate applications of (15)NO3(-) and (15)NH4(+) were also made to determine the importance of N form in their retention. More than 95% of the total (15)N applied was recovered after one growing season (~90% after two), demonstrating a considerable capacity of Arctic tundra to retain N from these deposition events. Important sinks for the deposited N, regardless of its application rate or form, were non-vascular plants>vascular plants>organic soil>litter>mineral soil, suggesting that non-vascular plants could be the primary component of this ecosystem to undergo measurable changes due to N enrichment from extreme deposition events. Substantial retention of N by soil microbial biomass (70% and 39% of (15)N in organic and mineral horizon, respectively) during the initial partitioning demonstrated their capacity to act as effective buffers for N leaching. Between the two N forms, vascular plants (Salix polaris) in particular showed difference in their N recovery, incorporating four times greater (15)NO3(-) than (15)NH4(+), suggesting deposition rich in nitrate will impact them more. Overall, these findings show that despite the deposition rates being extreme in statistical terms, biologically they do not exceed the capacity of tundra to sequester pollutant N during the growing season. Therefore, current and future extreme events may represent a major source of eutrophication. PMID:26956177

  18. On the chemical dynamics of extracellular polysaccharides in the high Arctic surface microlayer

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Q. Gao

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The surface microlayer (SML represents a unique system of which the physicochemical characteristics may differ from those of the underlying subsurface seawater (SSW. Within the Arctic pack ice area, the SML has been characterized as enriched in small colloids of biological origin, resulting from extracellular polymeric secretions (EPS. During the Arctic Summer Cloud-Ocean Study (ASCOS in August 2008, particulate and dissolved organic matter (POM, DOM samples were collected and chemically characterized from the SML and the corresponding SSW at an open lead centered at 87.5° N and 5° E. Total organic carbon was persistently enriched in the SML with a mean enrichment factor (EF of 1.45 ± 0.41, whereas sporadic depletions of dissolved carbohydrates and amino acids were observed. Monosaccharide compositional analysis reveals that EPS in the Arctic lead was formed mainly of distinctive heteropolysaccharides, enriched in xylose, fucose and glucose. The mean concentrations of total hydrolysable neutral sugars in SSW were 94.9 ± 37.5 nM in high molecular weight (HMW DOM and 64.4 ± 14.5 nM in POM. The enrichment of polysaccharides in the SML appeared to be a common feature, with EFs ranging from 1.7 to 7.0 for particulate polysaccharides and 3.5 to 12.1 for polysaccharides in the HMW DOM fraction. A calculated monosaccharide yield suggests that polymers in the HMW DOM fraction were scavenged, without substantial degradation, into the SML. Bubble scavenging experiments showed that newly aggregated particles could be formed abiotically by coagulation of low molecular weight nanometer-sized gels. Experimentally-generated aerosol particles were enriched in polysaccharides by factors of 22–70, relative to the source seawater. We propose that bubble scavenging of surface-active polysaccharides was one of the possible mechanisms for the enrichment of polysaccharides in the SML.

  19. Freshwater discharges drive high levels of methylmercury in Arctic marine biota.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schartup, Amina T; Balcom, Prentiss H; Soerensen, Anne L; Gosnell, Kathleen J; Calder, Ryan S D; Mason, Robert P; Sunderland, Elsie M

    2015-09-22

    Elevated levels of neurotoxic methylmercury in Arctic food-webs pose health risks for indigenous populations that consume large quantities of marine mammals and fish. Estuaries provide critical hunting and fishing territory for these populations, and, until recently, benthic sediment was thought to be the main methylmercury source for coastal fish. New hydroelectric developments are being proposed in many northern ecosystems, and the ecological impacts of this industry relative to accelerating climate changes are poorly characterized. Here we evaluate the competing impacts of climate-driven changes in northern ecosystems and reservoir flooding on methylmercury production and bioaccumulation through a case study of a stratified sub-Arctic estuarine fjord in Labrador, Canada. Methylmercury bioaccumulation in zooplankton is higher than in midlatitude ecosystems. Direct measurements and modeling show that currently the largest methylmercury source is production in oxic surface seawater. Water-column methylation is highest in stratified surface waters near the river mouth because of the stimulating effects of terrestrial organic matter on methylating microbes. We attribute enhanced biomagnification in plankton to a thin layer of marine snow widely observed in stratified systems that concentrates microbial methylation and multiple trophic levels of zooplankton in a vertically restricted zone. Large freshwater inputs and the extensive Arctic Ocean continental shelf mean these processes are likely widespread and will be enhanced by future increases in water-column stratification, exacerbating high biological methylmercury concentrations. Soil flooding experiments indicate that near-term changes expected from reservoir creation will increase methylmercury inputs to the estuary by 25-200%, overwhelming climate-driven changes over the next decade.

  20. High renesting rates in arctic-breeding Dunlin (Calidris alpina): a clutch-removal experiment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gates, H. River; Lanctot, Richard B.; Powell, Abby N.

    2013-01-01

    The propensity to replace a clutch is a complex component of avian reproduction and poorly understood. We experimentally removed clutches from an Arctic-breeding shorebird, the Dunlin (Calidris alpina arcticola), during early and late stages of incubation to investigate replacement clutch rates, renesting interval, and mate and site fidelity between nesting attempts. In contrast to other Arctic studies, we documented renesting by radiotracking individuals to find replacement clutches. We also examined clutch size and mean egg volume to document changes in individual females’ investment in initial and replacement clutches. Finally, we examined the influence of adult body mass, clutch volume, dates of clutch initiation and nest loss, and year on the propensity to renest. We found high (82–95%) and moderate (35–50%) rates of renesting for early and late incubation treatments. Renesting intervals averaged 4.7–6.8 days and were not different for clutches removed early or late in incubation. Most pairs remained together for renesting attempts. Larger females were more likely to replace a clutch; female body mass was the most important parameter predicting propensity to renest. Clutches lost later in the season were less likely to be replaced. We present evidence that renesting is more common in Arctic-breeding shorebirds than was previously thought, and suggest that renesting is constrained by energetic and temporal factors as well as mate availability. Obtaining rates of renesting in species breeding at different latitudes will help determine when this behavior is likely to occur; such information is necessary for demographic models that include individual and population-level fecundity estimates.

  1. A Possible Feedback Mechanism Involving the Arctic Freshwater,the Arctic Sea Ice, and the North Atlantic Drift

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Odd Helge OTTER(A); Helge DRANGE

    2004-01-01

    Model studies point to enhanced warming and to increased freshwater fluxes to high northern latitudes in response to global warming. In order to address possible feedbacks in the ice-ocean system in response to such changes, the combined effect of increased freshwater input to the Arctic Ocean and Arctic warming--the latter manifested as a gradual melting of the Arctic sea ice--is examined using a 3-D isopycnic coordinate ocean general circulation model. A suite of three idealized experiments is carried out: one control integration, one integration with a doubling of the modern Arctic river runoff, and a third more extreme case, where the river runoff is five times the modern value. In the two freshwater cases, the sea ice thickness is reduced by 1.5-2 m in the central Arctic Ocean over a 50-year period. The modelled ocean response is qualitatively the same for both perturbation experiments: freshwater propagates into the Atlantic Ocean and the Nordic Seas, leading to an initial weakening of the North Atlantic Drift.Furthermore, changes in the geostrophic currents in the central Arctic and melting of the Arctic sea ice lead to an intensified Beaufort Gyre, which in turn increases the southward volume transport through the Canadian Archipelago. To compensate for this southward transport of mass, more warm and saline Atlantic water is carried northward with the North Atlantic Drift. It is found that the increased transport of salt into the northern North Atlantic and the Nordic Seas tends to counteract the impact of the increased freshwater originating from the Arctic, leading to a stabilization of the North Atlantic Drift.

  2. The invertebrate fauna of anthropogenic soils in the High-Arctic settlement of Barentsburg, Svalbard

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Torstein Solhøy

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available The terrestrial environment of the High Arctic consists of a mosaic of habitat types. In addition to the natural habitat diversity, various human-influenced types may occur. For the resident invertebrate fauna, these anthropogenic habitats may be either unusually favourable or detrimental. In the town of Barentsburg, Svalbard, soils were imported for the greenhouses from southern Russia. These soils were subsequently discarded outside the greenhouses and have become augmented with manure from the cowsheds. Both the greenhouse and the cowsheds are now derelict. This site represents an unusually nutrient-rich location with considerable development of organic soils, in stark contrast to the naturally forming organic soils in Svalbard, which are typically thin and nutrient poor. Few previous studies have examined the soil invertebrate communities of human-disturbed or -created habitats in the Arctic. In an often nutrient-poor terrestrial environment, it is unclear how the invertebrate fauna will react to such nutrient enhancement. In these soils, 46 species of invertebrates were determined. Eleven species have not been recorded from other habitats in Svalbard and are hence likely to have been introduced. The native species assemblage in the anthropogenic soils was not atypical for many natural sites in Svalbard. Despite the enriched organic soils and highly ameliorated winter temperature conditions, the soil invertebrate fauna biodiversity does not appear to be enhanced beyond the presence of certain probably introduced species.

  3. Ukpik: testbed for a miniaturized robotic astronomical observatory on a high Arctic mountain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinbring, Eric; Leckie, Brian; Hardy, Tim; Caputa, Kris; Fletcher, Murray

    2012-09-01

    Mountains along the northwestern coast of Ellesmere Island, Canada, possess the highest peaks nearest the Pole. This geography, combined with an atmospheric thermal inversion restricted to below ~1000 m during much of the long arctic night, provides excellent opportunities for uninterrupted cloud-free astronomy - provided the challenges of these incredibly remote locations can be overcome. We present a miniaturized robotic observatory for deployment on a High Arctic mountaintop. This system tested the operability of precise optical instruments during winter, and the logistics of installation and maintenance during summer. It is called Ukpik after the Inuktitut name for the snowy owl, and was deployed at two sites accessible only by helicopter, each north of 82 degrees latitude; one on rock at 1100 m elevation and another on a glacier at 1600 m. The instrument suite included at first an all-sky-viewing camera, with the later addition of a small telescope to monitor Polaris, both protected by a retractable weather-proof enclosure. Expanding this to include a narrow-field drift-scanning camera for studying extra-solar planet transits was also investigated, but not implemented. An unique restriction was that all had to be run on batteries recharged primarily by a wind turbine. Supplementary power came from a methanol fuel-cell electrical generator. Communications were via the Iridium satellite network. The system design, and lessons learned from three years of operation are discussed, along with prospects for time-domain astronomy from isolated, high-elevation polar mountaintops.

  4. New Particle Formation in the High Arctic: Observations and Model Simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karl, Matthias; Gross, Allan; Pirjola, Liisa; Leck, Caroline

    2010-05-01

    The central Arctic Ocean is an oceanic region far away from sources of anthropogenic sulphur gases. In summer, the region is nearly free from influences of continental or anthropogenic sources. It is generally accepted that the most likely nucleating species under tropospheric conditions are sulphuric acid (H2SO4), water (H2O), and ammonia (NH3). The formation of sulphate particles often takes place in environments where the available aerosol surface area is low and the condensational loss of nucleating vapours is not favoured. New sulphate particles may also be formed in plumes originating from point sources such as power plants or smelters. The classical homogeneous binary H2SO4-H2O nucleation mechanism could be operational in plumes containing high concentrations of sulphur dioxide (SO2). Marine particles are probably formed via a different nucleation route than the pollution-associated particles. There have been earlier model studies on the fate of sulphur-containing gas phase and particle compounds during the advection of air from the open sea over the pack ice area of the central Arctic Ocean. However, no previous attempts have been made to simulate observed new particle formation. Comprehensive observation data on gas phase compounds and on chemical composition and size distribution of particles used in this study were obtained during the Arctic Ocean Expedition (AOE-96) to the central Arctic Ocean from beginning of July until end-August of 1996. A sectional aerosol dynamics model, MAFOR, is developed in the frame of this study to predict nucleation in the marine boundary layer. MAFOR includes gas phase chemistry and aerosol dynamics and calculates number and composition distributions of particles as functions of time. Comparison with a well-documented existing aerosol box model (MONO32) and with observational data is used to evaluate the model. Several nucleation mechanisms are implemented in the model. Among the nucleation schemes are the commonly used

  5. Global View of the Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-01-01

    -lapsed view of this remote and inhospitable region. So far, they have processed one season's worth of images. 'We can see large cracks in the ice cover, where most ice grows, ' said Kwok. 'These cracks are much longer than previously thought, some as long as 2,000 kilometers (1,200 miles),' Kwok continued. 'If the ice is thinning due to warming, we'll expect to see more of these long cracks over the Arctic Ocean. 'Scientists believe this is one of the most significant breakthroughs in the last two decades of ice research. 'We are now in a position to better understand the sea ice cover and the role of the Arctic Ocean in global climate change, ' said Kwok.Radar can see through clouds and any kind of weather system, day or night, and as the Arctic regions are usually cloud-covered and subject to long, dark winters, radar is proving to be extremely useful. However, compiling these data into extremely detailed pictures of the Arctic is a challenging task. 'This is truly a major innovation in terms of the quantities of data being processed and the novelty of the methods being used, ' said Verne Kaupp, director of the Alaska SAR Facility at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks.The mission is a joint project between JPL, the Alaska SAR Facility, and the Canadian Space Agency. Launched by NASA in 1995, the Radarsat satellite is operated by the Canadian Space Agency. JPL manages the Sea Ice Thickness Derived From High Resolution Radar Imagery project for NASA's Earth Science Enterprise, Washington, DC. The Earth Science Enterprise is dedicated to studying how natural and human-induced changes affect our global environment.

  6. Springtime surface ozone fluctuations at high Arctic latitudes and their possible relationship to atmospheric bromine

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oltmans, Samuel J.; Sheridan, Patrick J.; Schnell, Russell C.; Winchester, John W.

    1988-01-01

    At high Arctic stations such as Barrow, Alaska, springtime near-surface ozone amounts fluctuate between the highest and lowest values seen during the course of the year. Episodes when the surface ozone concentration is essentially zero last up to several days during this time of year. In the Arctic Gas and Aerosol Sampling Program (AGASP-I and AGASP-II) in 1983 and 1986, it was found that ozone concentrations often showed a very steep gradient in altitude with very low values near the surface. The cold temperatures, and snow-covered ground make it unlikely that the surface itself would rapidly destroy significant amounts of ozone. The AGASP aircraft measurements that found low ozone concentrations in the lowest layers of the troposphere also found that filterable excess bromine (the amount of bromine in excess of the sea salt component) in samples collected wholly or partially beneath the temperature inversion had higher bromine concentrations than other tropospheric samples. Of the four lowest ozone minimum concentrations, three of them were associated with the highest bromine enrichments. Surface measurements of excess filterable bromine at Barrow show a strong seasonal dependence with values rising dramatically early in March, then declining in May. The concentration of organic bromine gases such as bromoform rise sharply during the winter and then begin to decline after March with winter and early spring values at least three times greater than the summer minimum.

  7. Methylmercury cycling in High Arctic wetland ponds: controls on sedimentary production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehnherr, Igor; St Louis, Vincent L; Kirk, Jane L

    2012-10-01

    Methylmercury (MeHg) is a potent neurotoxin that has been demonstrated to biomagnify in Arctic freshwater foodwebs to levels that may be of concern to Inuit peoples subsisting on freshwater fish, for example. The key process initiating the bioaccumulation and biomagnification of MeHg in foodwebs is the methylation of inorganic Hg(II) to form MeHg, and ultimately how much MeHg enters foodwebs is controlled by the production and availability of MeHg in a particular water body. We used isotopically enriched Hg stable isotope tracers in sediment core incubations to measure potential rates of Hg(II) methylation and investigate the controls on MeHg production in High Arctic wetland ponds in the Lake Hazen region of northern Ellesmere Island (Nunavut, Canada). We show here that MeHg concentrations in sediments are primarily controlled by the sediment methylation potential and the quantity of Hg(II) available for methylation, but not by sediment demethylation potential. Furthermore, MeHg concentrations in pond waters are controlled by MeHg production in sediments, overall anaerobic microbial activity, and photodemethylation in the water column.

  8. A Hero in the Friendly Arctic: Deconstructing Vilhjalmur Stefansson's Rhetorical Maneuver

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Silje Gaupseth

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available The article deals with Arctic explorer and anthropologist Vilhjalmur Stefansson's self-presentation in the expedition account The Friendly Arctic: The Story of Five Years in Polar Regions (1921, which tells the story of his travels and trials in the Canadian High Arctic in the years between 1913-1918. The account has been considered a key text to Stefansson's Arctic career, and provides a textbook example of his characteristic theory of living off the country in the so-called Eskimo way. Against the background of Stefansson's debated position as Arctic expert and visionary, I ask if it is possible to read the kind of criticism with which Stefansson frequently was met as rooted in some of the narrative aspects of his account. The narrative persona or implied author is a central element in the literature of exploration, as several literary scholars have pointed out. My reading is centred around the implied author of The Friendly Arctic, which I argue must be read in light of the sometimes conflicting roles given to Stefansson as protagonist and narrator in his own story. Close-readings of passages from the account raise the dilemma of how it is possible to present oneself as a hero in an essentially friendly Arctic.

  9. Metabolic cold adaptation and aerobic performance of blue mussels (Mytilus edulis) along a temperature gradient into the High Arctic region

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thyrring, Jakob; Rysgaard, Søren; Blicher, Martin;

    2015-01-01

    and plasticity of blue mussels across latitudes spanning from 56 to 77ºN. This indicates that low ocean temperature per se does not constrain metabolic activity of Mytilus in the Arctic; rather, we speculate that maturation of reproductive tissues, larval supply and annual energy budgets are the most relevant......The blue mussel (Mytilus edulis) has recently expanded its northern distribution in the Arctic and is therefore considered to be a sensitive indicator of climate changes in this region. In this study, we compared aerobic performance of blue mussels from High Arctic, Subarctic and temperate...... populations at different temperatures. Standard metabolic rates (SMR) and active metabolic rates (AMR) were measured for each population, and absolute (AMR − SMR) and factorial (AMR/SMR) scopes were calculated. Blue mussels from the temperate population had the lowest Q10 (= 1.8) and the largest thermal...

  10. Assimilation impacts on Arctic Ocean circulation, heat and freshwater budgets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zuo, Hao; Mugford, Ruth I.; Haines, Keith; Smith, Gregory C.

    We investigate the Arctic basin circulation, freshwater content (FWC) and heat budget by using a high-resolution global coupled ice-ocean model implemented with a state-of-the-art data assimilation scheme. We demonstrate that, despite a very sparse dataset, by assimilating hydrographic data in and near the Arctic basin, the initial warm bias and drift in the control run is successfully corrected, reproducing a much more realistic vertical and horizontal structure to the cyclonic boundary current carrying the Atlantic Water (AW) along the Siberian shelves in the reanalysis run. The Beaufort Gyre structure and FWC and variability are also more accurately reproduced. Small but important changes in the strait exchange flows are found which lead to more balanced budgets in the reanalysis run. Assimilation fluxes dominate the basin budgets over the first 10 years (P1: 1987-1996) of the reanalysis for both heat and FWC, after which the drifting Arctic upper water properties have been restored to realistic values. For the later period (P2: 1997-2004), the Arctic heat budget is almost balanced without assimilation contributions, while the freshwater budget shows reduced assimilation contributions compensating largely for surface salinity damping, which was extremely strong in this run. A downward trend in freshwater export at the Canadian Straits and Fram Strait is found in period P2, associated with Beaufort Gyre recharge. A detailed comparison with observations and previous model studies at the individual Arctic straits is also included.

  11. Modern and historical fluxes of halogenated organic contaminants to a lake in the Canadian arctic, as determined from annually laminated sediment cores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, G A; Braekevelt, E; Helm, P A; Bidleman, T F; Outridge, P M; Lockhart, W L; McNeeley, R; Rosenberg, B; Ikonomou, M G; Hamilton, P; Tomy, G T; Wilkinson, P

    2005-04-15

    Two annually laminated cores collected from Lake DV09 on Devon Island in May 1999 were dated using 210Pb and 137Cs, and analyzed for a variety of halogenated organic contaminants (HOCs), including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorine pesticides, short-chain polychlorinated n-alkanes (sPCAs), polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). Dry weight HOC concentrations in Lake DV09 sediments were generally similar to other remote Arctic lakes. Maximum HOC fluxes often agreed well with production maxima, although many compound groups exhibited maxima at or near the sediment surface, much later than peak production. The lower than expected HOC concentrations in older sediment slices may be due to anaerobic degradation and possibly to dilution resulting from a temporary increase in sedimentation rate observed between the mid-1960s and 1970s. Indeed, temporal trends were more readily apparent for those compound classes when anaerobic metabolites were also analyzed, such as for DDT and toxaphene. However, it is postulated here for the first time that the maximum or increasing HOC surface fluxes observed for many of the major compound classes in DV09 sediments may be influenced by climate variation and the resulting increase in algal primary productivity which could drive an increasing rate of HOC scavenging from the water column. Both the fraction (F(TC)) and enantiomer fraction (EF) of trans-chlordane (TC) decreased significantly between 1957 and 1997, suggesting that recent inputs to the lake are from weathered chlordane sources. PCDD/Fs showed a change in sources from pentachlorophenol (PeCP) in the 1950s and 1960s to combustion sources into the 1990s. Improvements in combustion technology may be responsible for the reducing the proportion of TCDF relative to OCDD in the most recent slice. PMID:15866277

  12. Modern and historical fluxes of halogenated organic contaminants to a lake in the Canadian arctic, as determined from annually laminated sediment cores

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Two annually laminated cores collected from Lake DV09 on Devon Island in May 1999 were dated using 210Pb and 137Cs, and analyzed for a variety of halogenated organic contaminants (HOCs), including polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorine pesticides, short-chain polychlorinated n-alkanes (sPCAs), polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins and dibenzofurans (PCDD/Fs), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs). Dry weight HOC concentrations in Lake DV09 sediments were generally similar to other remote Arctic lakes. Maximum HOC fluxes often agreed well with production maxima, although many compound groups exhibited maxima at or near the sediment surface, much later than peak production. The lower than expected HOC concentrations in older sediment slices may be due to anaerobic degradation and possibly to dilution resulting from a temporary increase in sedimentation rate observed between the mid-1960s and 1970s. Indeed, temporal trends were more readily apparent for those compound classes when anaerobic metabolites were also analyzed, such as for DDT and toxaphene. However, it is postulated here for the first time that the maximum or increasing HOC surface fluxes observed for many of the major compound classes in DV09 sediments may be influenced by climate variation and the resulting increase in algal primary productivity which could drive an increasing rate of HOC scavenging from the water column. Both the fraction (F TC) and enantiomer fraction (EF) of trans-chlordane (TC) decreased significantly between 1957 and 1997, suggesting that recent inputs to the lake are from weathered chlordane sources. PCDD/Fs showed a change in sources from pentachlorophenol (PeCP) in the 1950s and 1960s to combustion sources into the 1990s. Improvements in combustion technology may be responsible for the reducing the proportion of TCDF relative to OCDD in the most recent slice

  13. Occurrence of weak, sub-micron, tropospheric aerosol events at high Arctic latitudes

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Neill, N. T.; Pancrati, O.; Baibakov, K.; Eloranta, E.; Batchelor, R. L.; Freemantle, J.; McArthur, L. J. B.; Strong, K.; Lindenmaier, R.

    2008-07-01

    Numerous fine mode (sub-micron) aerosol optical events were observed during the summer of 2007 at the High Arctic atmospheric observatory (PEARL) located at Eureka, Nunavut, Canada. Half of these events could be traced to forest fires in southern and eastern Russia and the Northwest Territories of Canada. The most notable findings were that (a) a combination of ground-based measurements (passive sunphotometry, high spectral resolution lidar) could be employed to determine that weak (near sub-visual) fine mode events had occurred, and (b) this data combined with remote sensing imagery products (MODIS, OMI-AI, FLAMBE fire sources), Fourier transform spectroscopy and back trajectories could be employed to identify the smoke events.

  14. Effects of Reducing the Ambient UV-B Radiation in the High Arctic on Salix arctica and Vaccinium uliginosum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Albert, Kristian; Ro-Poulsen, Helge; Mikkelsen, Teis Nørgaard;

    2005-01-01

    Effects of reducing the ambient UV-B radiation on gas exchange and chlorophyll fluores-cence of two dwarf shrub species, Salix arctica and Vaccinium uliginosum, was studied in a high arctic heath in North East Greenland during two growing seasons. Films (Mylar, transmitting ¿ > 320 nm, and Lexan...

  15. Effects of reducing the ambient UV-B radiation in the high Arctic on Salix arctica and Vaccinium uliginosum

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Albert, K.R.; Ro-Poulsen, H.; Mikkelsen, Teis Nørgaard;

    2005-01-01

    Effects of reducing the ambient UV-B radiation on gas exchange and chlorophyll fluores-cence of two dwarf shrub species, Salix arctica and Vaccinium uliginosum, was studied in a high arctic heath in North East Greenland during two growing seasons. Films (Mylar, transmitting λ > 320 nm, and Lexan,...

  16. Pyrosequencing analysis of the protist communities in a High Arctic meromictic lake: DNA preservation and change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sophie eCharvet

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available High Arctic meromictic lakes are extreme environments characterized by cold temperatures, low nutrient inputs from their polar desert catchments and prolonged periods of low irradiance and darkness. These lakes are permanently stratified with an oxygenated freshwater layer (mixolimnion overlying a saline, anoxic water column (monimolimnion. The physical and chemical properties of the deepest known lake of this type in the circumpolar Arctic, Lake A, on the far northern coast of Ellesmere Island, Canada, have been studied over the last 15 years, but little is known about the lake’s biological communities. We applied high-throughput sequencing of the V4 region of the 18S ribosomal RNA gene to investigate the protist communities down the water column at three sampling times: under the ice at the end of winter in 2008, during an unusual period of warming and ice-out the same year, and again under the ice in mid-summer 2009. Sequences of many protist taxa occurred throughout the water column at all sampling times, including in the deep anoxic layer where growth is highly unlikely. Furthermore, there were sequences for taxonomic groups including diatoms and marine taxa, which have never been observed in Lake A by microscopic analysis. However the sequences of other taxa such as ciliates, chrysophytes, Cercozoa and Telonema varied with depth, between years and during the transition to ice-free conditions. These results imply that there are seasonally active taxa in the surface waters of the lake that are sensitive to depth and change with time. DNA from these taxa is superimposed upon background DNA from multiple internal and external sources that is preserved in the deep, cold, largely anoxic water column.

  17. Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parkinson, Claire L.; Zukor, Dorothy J. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    The Arctic Ocean is the smallest of the Earth's four major oceans, covering 14x10(exp 6) sq km located entirely within the Arctic Circle (66 deg 33 min N). It is a major player in the climate of the north polar region and has a variable sea ice cover that tends to increase its sensitivity to climate change. Its temperature, salinity, and ice cover have all undergone changes in the past several decades, although it is uncertain whether these predominantly reflect long-term trends, oscillations within the system, or natural variability. Major changes include a warming and expansion of the Atlantic layer, at depths of 200-900 m, a warming of the upper ocean in the Beaufort Sea, a considerable thinning (perhaps as high as 40%) of the sea ice cover, a lesser and uneven retreat of the ice cover (averaging approximately 3% per decade), and a mixed pattern of salinity increases and decreases.

  18. Salt Marshes of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

    Data.gov (United States)

    US Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior — The purpose of this study was to map all salt marshes along the coastline of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, from the Canning River to the Canadian border....

  19. Carbon dioxide exchange in the High Arctic - examples from terrestrial ecosystems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Grøndahl, L.

    and temperature in the growing season strongly control the interannual variability in ecosystem CO2 uptake rates. The area has during the past years experienced a warming during the summer season, which was shown to increase the uptake of CO2 by the vegetation. The increasing earlier snowmelt prolonged the length......The thesis provides an analysis of the exchange of CO2 between the atmosphere and the vegetation communities in the High Arctic at different temporal and spatial scales. Using a time series of data from a dry heath ecosystem in Zackenberg NE Greenland, it was shown that timing of snowmelt...... to increased warming in the region. A cross scale analysis of eddy covariance and chamber data showed a good agreement between the two methods, which lead to an estimate of CO2 exchange based on NDVI. A timeseries of satellite imagery for the 2004 growing season provided the opportunity to upscale fluxes from...

  20. Thick-billed murres from the High Arctic have the luxury of being lazy!

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Linnebjerg, Jannie; Tremblay, Yann; Mosbech, Anders;

    Aquatic environments in the temperate, boreal and arctic climate zones are highly seasonal in terms of biological productivity. Many poikilothermic aquatic organisms survive the winter, when food availability is low, by reducing their activity levels and/or performing vertical migrations to deep...... resolve this by migrating to warmer waters, where locating food is energetically less challenging. Migration by flight, however, is extremely energetically costly for birds with wings specialized for underwater swimming. Little is known of how they manage to obtain sufficient energy during migration....... In this study we used time-depth recorders (recording pressure, temperature, wet/dry and light every 10th sec. for ~365 days) to investigate the activity budget and locations of thick-billed murres during the non-breeding season. Fall migration by male parent and chick was conducted solely by swimming...

  1. Does warming affect growth rate and biomass production of shrubs in the High Arctic?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Campioli, Matteo; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Albert, Kristian Rost;

    2013-01-01

    Few studies have assessed directly the impact of warming on plant growth and biomass production in the High Arctic. Here, we aimed to investigate the impact of 7 years of warming (open greenhouses) on the aboveground relative growth rate (RGR) of Cassiope tetragona and Salix arctica in North...... the secondary growth of old stem segments of Cassiope formed before the treatment began. The increase in Cassiope RGR was associated with an increase in gross photosynthetic uptake, branching and C concentration in old green tissues. Overall, the different growth measures consistently indicated that temperature......-Eastern Greenland. RGR was assessed for apical (leaves, stem, reproductive organs) and lateral meristems (secondary growth of stem and branches) and accompanied by measures of gross ecosystem production (GEP), branching and tissue carbon (C) concentration. Measurements were based on harvest and biometric methods...

  2. First record of eocene bony fishes and crocodyliforms from Canada's Western Arctic.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jaelyn J Eberle

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Discovery of Eocene non-marine vertebrates, including crocodylians, turtles, bony fishes, and mammals in Canada's High Arctic was a critical paleontological contribution of the last century because it indicated that this region of the Arctic had been mild, temperate, and ice-free during the early - middle Eocene (∼53-50 Ma, despite being well above the Arctic Circle. To date, these discoveries have been restricted to Canada's easternmost Arctic - Ellesmere and Axel Heiberg Islands (Nunavut. Although temporally correlative strata crop out over 1,000 km west, on Canada's westernmost Arctic Island - Banks Island, Northwest Territories - they have been interpreted as predominantly marine. We document the first Eocene bony fish and crocodyliform fossils from Banks Island. PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We describe fossils of bony fishes, including lepisosteid (Atractosteus, esocid (pike, and amiid, and a crocodyliform, from lower - middle Eocene strata of the Cyclic Member, Eureka Sound Formation within Aulavik National Park (∼76°N. paleolat.. Palynology suggests the sediments are late early to middle Eocene in age, and likely spanned the Early Eocene Climatic Optimum (EECO. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: These fossils extend the geographic range of Eocene Arctic lepisosteids, esocids, amiids, and crocodyliforms west by approximately 40° of longitude or ∼1100 km. The low diversity bony fish fauna, at least at the family level, is essentially identical on Ellesmere and Banks Islands, suggesting a pan-High Arctic bony fish fauna of relatively basal groups around the margin of the Eocene Arctic Ocean. From a paleoclimatic perspective, presence of a crocodyliform, gar and amiid fishes on northern Banks provides further evidence that mild, year-round temperatures extended across the Canadian Arctic during early - middle Eocene time. Additionally, the Banks Island crocodyliform is consistent with the phylogenetic hypothesis of a Paleogene divergence

  3. Reconstruction of a high-resolution late holocene arctic paleoclimate record from Colville River delta sediments.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schreiner, Kathryn Melissa; Lowry, Thomas Stephen

    2013-10-01

    This work was partially supported by the Sandia National Laboratories, Laboratory Directed Research and Development (LDRD) fellowship program in conjunction with Texas A&M University (TAMU). The research described herein is the work of Kathryn M. Schreiner (Katie) and her advisor, Thomas S. Bianchi and represents a concise description of Katies dissertation that was submitted to the TAMU Office of Graduate Studies in May 2013 in partial fulfillment of her doctorate of philosophy degree. High Arctic permafrost soils contain a massive amount of organic carbon, accounting for twice as much carbon as what is currently stored as carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. However, with current warming trends this sink is in danger of thawing and potentially releasing large amounts of carbon as both carbon dioxide and methane into the atmosphere. It is difficult to make predictions about the future of this sink without knowing how it has reacted to past temperature and climate changes. This project investigated long term, fine scale particulate organic carbon (POC) delivery by the high-Arctic Colville River into Simpsons Lagoon in the near-shore Beaufort Sea. Modern POC was determined to be a mixture of three sources (riverine soils, coastal erosion, and marine). Downcore POC measurements were performed in a core close to the Colville River output and a core close to intense coastal erosion. Inputs of the three major sources were found to vary throughout the last two millennia, and in the Colville River core covary significantly with Alaskan temperature reconstructions.

  4. Reconstruction of a high-resolution late holocene arctic paleoclimate record from Colville River delta sediments.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schreiner, Kathryn Melissa; Lowry, Thomas Stephen

    2013-10-01

    This work was partially supported by the Sandia National Laboratories,Laboratory Directed Research and Development' (LDRD) fellowship program in conjunction with Texas A&M University (TAMU). The research described herein is the work of Kathryn M. Schreiner (Katie') and her advisor, Thomas S. Bianchi and represents a concise description of Katie's dissertation that was submitted to the TAMU Office of Graduate Studies in May 2013 in partial fulfillment of her doctorate of philosophy degree. High Arctic permafrost soils contain a massive amount of organic carbon, accounting for twice as much carbon as what is currently stored as carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. However, with current warming trends this sink is in danger of thawing and potentially releasing large amounts of carbon as both carbon dioxide and methane into the atmosphere. It is difficult to make predictions about the future of this sink without knowing how it has reacted to past temperature and climate changes. This project investigated long term, fine scale particulate organic carbon (POC) delivery by the high-Arctic Colville River into Simpson's Lagoon in the near-shore Beaufort Sea. Modern POC was determined to be a mixture of three sources (riverine soils, coastal erosion, and marine). Downcore POC measurements were performed in a core close to the Colville River output and a core close to intense coastal erosion. Inputs of the three major sources were found to vary throughout the last two millennia, and in the Colville River core covary significantly with Alaskan temperature reconstructions.

  5. Fuel stores of juvenile waders on autumn migration in high arctic Canada

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lindström, Åke; Klaassen, Marcel; Piersma, Theunis; Holmgren, Noel; Wennerberg, Liv; Both, Christiaan; 296147567

    2002-01-01

    Little is known about the fuel stores that arctic-breeding waders put on before departure from the breeding grounds. During a ship-based expedition to arctic Canada, we caught waders at seven, mainly coastal sites, within 68°-76°N and 139°-67°W, from 28 July to 31 August 1999. More than two hundred

  6. Fuel stores of juvenile waders on autumn migration in high arctic Canada

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lindström, A.; Klaassen, M.R.J.; Piersma, T.; Holmgren, N.; Wennerberg, L.

    2002-01-01

    Little is known about the fuel stores that arctic-breeding waders put on before departure from the breeding grounds. During a ship-based expedition to arctic Canada, we caught waders at seven, mainly coastal sites, within 68degrees-76degreesN and 139degrees-67degreesW, from 28 July to 31 August 1999

  7. Eddy length scales and the Rossby radius in the Arctic Ocean

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. J. G. Nurser

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available The first (and second baroclinic deformation (or Rossby radii are presented and discussed north of ~60° N, focusing on deep basins and shelf seas in the high Arctic Ocean, the Nordic Seas, Baffin Bay, Hudson Bay and the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, derived from high-resolution ice-ocean general circulation model output. Comparison of the model output with measured results shows that low values of the Rossby radius (in shallow water and high values (in the Canada Basin are accurately reproduced, while intermediate values (in the region of the Makarov and Amundsen Basins are overestimated. In the high Arctic Ocean, the first Rossby radius increases from ~5 km in the Nansen Basin to ~15 km in the central Canadian Basin. In the shelf seas and elsewhere, values are low (1–7 km, reflecting weak density stratification, shallow water, or both. Seasonality only strongly impacts the Rossby radii in shallow seas where winter homogenisation of the water column can reduce it to the order of 100 m. We also offer an interpretation and explanation of the observed scales of Arctic Ocean eddies.

  8. Arctic smoke ? record high air pollution levels in the European Arctic due to agricultural fires in Eastern Europe in spring 2006

    OpenAIRE

    A. Stohl; T. Berg; Burkhart, J. F.; Fjǽraa, A. M.; Forster, C.; Herber, A.; Hov, Ø.; Lunder, C.; McMillan, W. W.; Oltmans, S.; Shiobara, M.; Simpson, D; S. Solberg; K. Stebel; StrÖm, J.

    2007-01-01

    In spring 2006, the European Arctic was abnormally warm, setting new historical temperature records. During this warm period, smoke from agricultural fires in Eastern Europe intruded into the European Arctic and caused the most severe air pollution episodes ever recorded there. This paper confirms that biomass burning (BB) was indeed the source of the observed air pollution, studies the transport of the smoke into the Arctic, and presents an overview of the observations take...

  9. A 6,000-years record of atmospheric mercury accumulation in the high Arctic from peat deposits on Bathurst Island, Nunavut, Canada

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Givelet, N.; Roos-Barraclough, F.; Goodsite, M. E.;

    2003-01-01

    There is a growing interest in the atmospheric transport, deposition, and accumulation of anthropogenic Hg in the Arctic. To quantify the impact of industrial Hg emissions, the natural rate of atmospheric Hg accumulation must be known. Mercury concentration measurements and age dating of peat from...... the Canadian Arctic show that natural "background" Hg flux rather constant (ca. 1 microgram per sq. m per yr.) throughout the past 6,000 years. Mercury concentrations in surface peat layers are much higher, but chronology of these changes cannot be interpreted until more age dates are available. The elevated...... Hg concentrations in surface layers, however, are out of proportion with Br and Se, suggesting that there has been a significant human impact. Peat cores from southern Canada provide a record of atmospheric Hg accumulation extending back nine thousand years, with similar background fluxes. Thus, pre...

  10. Levoglucosan indicates high levels of biomass burning aerosols over oceans from the Arctic to Antarctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Q.; Xie, Z.; Wang, X.; Kang, H.; Zhang, P.

    2015-12-01

    Biomass burning discharges numerous kinds of gases and aerosols, such as carbon dioxide (CO2), carbon monoxide (CO), methane (CH4), black carbon (BC), alcohols, organic acids and persistent organic pollutants (POPs), and is known to affect air quality, global carbon cycle, and climate. However, the extent to which biomass burning gases/aerosols are present on a global scale, especially in the marine atmosphere, is poorly understood. Here we measure levoglucosan, a superior molecular tracer of biomass burning aerosols because of its single source, in marine air from the Arctic Ocean through the North and South Pacific Ocean to coastal Antarctica during burning season. Levoglucosan was found to be present in all regions at ng/m3 levels. As a whole, levoglucosan concentrations in the Southern Hemisphere were comparable to those in the Northern Hemisphere. Marine air in the mid-latitudes (30°-60° N and S) has the highest levoglucosan loading due to the emission from adjacent lands. Air over the Arctic Ocean which affected by biomass burning in the east Siberia has intermediate loading. Equatorial latitudes is the main source of biomass burning emissions, however, levoglucosan is in relatively low level. Large amount of precipitation and high hydroxyl radical concentration in this region cause more deposition and degradation of levoglucosan during transport. Previous studies were debatable on the influence of biomass burning on the Antarctic because of uncertain source of BC. Here via levoglucosan, it is proved that although far away from emission sources, the Antarctic is still affected by biomass burning aerosols which may be derived from South America. Biomass burning has a significant impact on mercury (Hg) and water-soluble organic carbon (WSOC) in marine aerosols from pole to pole, with more contribution to WSOC in the Northern Hemisphere than in the Southern Hemisphere.

  11. Priming in permafrost soils: High vulnerability of arctic soil organic carbon to increased input of plant-derived compounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wild, Birgit; Gentsch, Norman; Capek, Petr; Diakova, Katerina; Alves, Ricardo; Barta, Jiri; Gittel, Antje; Guggenberger, Georg; Lashchinskiy, Nikolay; Knoltsch, Anna; Mikutta, Robert; Santruckova, Hana; Schnecker, Jörg; Shibistova, Olga; Takriti, Mounir; Urich, Tim; Watzka, Margarete; Richter, Andreas

    2015-04-01

    Arctic ecosystems are warming rapidly, resulting in a stimulation of both plant primary production and soil organic matter (SOM) decomposition. In addition to this direct stimulation, SOM decomposition might also be indirectly affected by rising temperatures mediated by the increase in plant productivity. Higher root litter production for instance might decrease SOM decomposition by providing soil microorganisms with alternative C and N sources ("negative priming"), or might increase SOM decomposition by facilitating microbial growth and enzyme production ("positive priming"). With about 1,700 Pg of organic C stored in arctic soils, and 88% of that in horizons deeper than 30 cm, it is crucial to understand the controls on SOM decomposition in different horizons of arctic permafrost soils, and thus the vulnerability of SOM to changes in C and N availability in a future climate. We here report on the vulnerability of SOM in arctic permafrost soils to an increased input of plant-derived organic compounds, and on its variability across soil horizons and sites. We simulated an increased input of plant-derived compounds by amending soil samples with 13C-labelled cellulose or protein, and compared the mineralization of native, unlabelled soil organic C (SOC) to unamended control samples. Our experiment included 119 individual samples of arctic permafrost soils, covering four sites across the Siberian Arctic, and five soil horizons, i.e., organic topsoil, mineral topsoil, mineral subsoil and cryoturbated material (topsoil material buried in the subsoil by freeze-thaw processes) from the active layer, as well as thawed material from the upper permafrost. Our findings suggest that changes in C and N availability in Arctic soils, such as mediated by plants, have a high potential to alter the decomposition of SOM, but also point at fundamental differences between soil horizons. In the organic topsoil, SOC mineralization increased by 51% after addition of protein, but was not

  12. Salix polaris growth responses to active layer detachment and solifluction processes in High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siekacz, Liliana

    2015-04-01

    The work is dedicated to demonstrate the potential of Salix polaris grow properties in the dendrogemorphologic image, analyzing periglacially induced slope processes in the high Arctic.. Observed anatomical and morphological plants responses to solifluction and active layer detachment processes are presented qualitatively and quantitatively as a summary of presented features frequency. The results are discussed against the background of the other research results in this field. The investigations was performed in Ebba valley, in the vicinity of Petunia Bay, northernmost part of Billefjorden in central Spitsbergen (Svalbard). Environmental conditions are characterized by annual precipitation sum lower than 200 mm (Hagen et al.,1993) and average summer temperature of about 5°C, with maximum daily temperatures rarely exceeding 10°C (Rachlewicz, 2009). Collected shrub material was prepared according to the methods presented by Schweingruber and Poschlod (2005). Thin (approx. 15-20μm) sections of the whole cross-section were prepared with a sledge microtome, stained with Safranine and Astra blue and finally permanently fixed on microslides with Canada balsam and dried. Snapshots were taken partially for each cross-section with digital camera (ColorView III, Olympus) connected to a microscope (Olympus BX41) and merged into one, high resolution image. After all, ring widths were measured in 3-4 radii in every single cross-section using ImageJ software. Analyzed plants revealed extremely harsh environmental conditions of their growth. Buchwał et al. (2013) provided quantitative data concerning missing rings and partially missing rings in shrubs growing on Ebba valley floor. Mean ring width at the level of 79μm represents one of the smallest values of yearly growth ever noted. The share of missing rings and partially missing rings was 11,2% and 13,6% respectively. Plants growing on Ebba valley slope indicate almost twice smaller values of ring width (41μm), and higher

  13. Ecosystem Metabolism and Air-Water Fluxes of Greenhouse Gases in High Arctic Wetland Ponds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lehnherr, I.; Venkiteswaran, J.; St. Louis, V. L.; Emmerton, C.; Schiff, S. L.

    2012-12-01

    Freshwater lakes and wetlands can be very productive systems on the Arctic landscape compared to terrestrial tundra ecosystems and provide valuable resources to many organisms, including waterfowl, fish and humans. Rates of ecosystem productivity dictate how much energy flows through food webs, impacting the abundance of higher-level organisms (e.g., fish), as well as the net carbon balance, which determines whether a particular ecosystem is a source or sink of carbon. Climate change is predicted to result in warmer temperatures, increased precipitation and permafrost melting in the Arctic and is already altering northern ecosystems at unprecedented rates; however, it is not known how freshwater systems are responding to these changes. To predict how freshwater systems will respond to complex environmental changes, it is necessary to understand the key processes, such as primary production and ecosystem respiration, that are driving these systems. We sampled wetland ponds (n=8) and lakes (n=2) on northern Ellesmere Island (81° N, Nunavut, Canada) during the open water season for a suite of biogeochemical parameters, including concentrations of dissolved gases (O2, CO2, CH4, N2O) as well as stable-isotope ratios of dissolved inorganic carbon (δ13C-DIC), dissolved oxygen (δ18O-DO), and water (δ18O-H2O). We will present rates of primary production and ecosystem respiration, modeled from the concentration and stable isotope ratios of DIC and DO, as well as air-water gas exchange of greenhouse gases in these high Arctic ponds and lakes. Preliminary results demonstrate that ecosystem metabolism in these ponds was high enough to result in significant deviations in the isotope ratios of DIC and DO from atmospheric equilibrium conditions. In other words ecosystem rates of primary production and respiration were faster than gas exchange even in these small, shallow, well-mixed ponds. Furthermore, primary production was elevated enough at all sites except Lake Hazen, a

  14. Integrated Positioning System of Autonomous Underwater Robot and Its Application in High Latitudes of Arctic Zone

    OpenAIRE

    Inzartsev, Alexander; Kamorniy, Alexander; Kiselyov, Lev; Matviyenko, Yury; Rylov, Nicolay; Rylov, Roman; Vaulin, Yury

    2010-01-01

    1. An autonomous unmanned underwater vehicle for scientific research was used for the first time in the world history under ice in the Arctic polar latitudes. The possibility of its use for bottom characteristics research was practically proved.

  15. Quantifying snow and vegetation interactions in the high arctic based on Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gacitua, Guisella; Bay, Christian; Pedersen, Maria Rask;

    2013-01-01

    Arctic in Northeast Greenland. We used ground penetrating radar (GPR) for snow thickness measurements across the Zackenberg valley. Measurements were integrated to the physical conditions that support the vegetation distribution. Descriptive statistics and correlations of the distribution of each...

  16. Stable Isotope Probing Analysis of the Diversity and Activity of Methanotrophic Bacteria in Soils from the Canadian High Arctic

    OpenAIRE

    Martineau, Christine; Whyte, Lyle G.; Greer, Charles W.

    2010-01-01

    The melting of permafrost and its potential impact on CH4 emissions are major concerns in the context of global warming. Methanotrophic bacteria have the capacity to mitigate CH4 emissions from melting permafrost. Here, we used quantitative PCR (qPCR), stable isotope probing (SIP) of DNA, denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) fingerprinting, and sequencing of the 16S rRNA and pmoA genes to study the activity and diversity of methanotrophic bacteria in active-layer soils from Ellesmer...

  17. Importance of aerosol composition and mixing state for cloud droplet activation in the high Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Leck

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Concentrations of cloud condensation nuclei (CCN were measured throughout an expedition by icebreaker around the central Arctic Ocean, including a 3 week ice drift operation at 87° N, from 3 August to 9 September 2008. In agreement with previous observations in the area and season median daily CCN concentrations at 0.2% water vapor supersaturation were typically in the range of 15 to 30 cm−3, but concentrations varied by two to three orders of magnitude over the expedition and were occasionally below 1 cm−3. The CCN concentrations were highest near the ice edge and fell by a factor of three in the first 48 h of transport from the open sea into the pack ice region. For longer transport times they increased again indicating a local source over the pack ice, suggested to be polymer gels, via drops injected into the air by bubbles bursting on open leads. By assuming Köhler theory and simulating the cloud nucleation process using a Lagrangian adiabatic air parcel model that solves the kinetic formulation for condensation of water on size resolved aerosol particles we inferred the properties of the unexplained non-water soluble aerosol fraction that is necessary for reproducing the observed concentrations of CCN. We propose that the portion of the internally/externally mixed water insoluble particles was larger in the corresponding smaller aerosol sizes ranges. These particles were physically and chemically behaving as polymer gels: the interaction of the hydrophilic and hydrophobic entities on the structures of polymer gels during cloud droplet activation would at first only show a partial wetting character and only weak hygroscopic growth. Given time, a high CCN activation efficiency is achieved, which is promoted by the hydrophilicity or surface-active properties of the gels. Thus the result in this study argues for that the behavior of the high Arctic aerosol in CCN-counters operating at water vapor supersaturations > 0.4% (high relative

  18. Importance of aerosol composition and mixing state for cloud droplet activation in the high Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leck, C.; Svensson, E.

    2014-08-01

    Concentrations of cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) were measured throughout an expedition by icebreaker around the central Arctic Ocean, including a 3 week ice drift operation at 87° N, from 3 August to 9 September 2008. In agreement with previous observations in the area and season median daily CCN concentrations at 0.2% water vapor supersaturation were typically in the range of 15 to 30 cm-3, but concentrations varied by two to three orders of magnitude over the expedition and were occasionally below 1 cm-3. The CCN concentrations were highest near the ice edge and fell by a factor of three in the first 48 h of transport from the open sea into the pack ice region. For longer transport times they increased again indicating a local source over the pack ice, suggested to be polymer gels, via drops injected into the air by bubbles bursting on open leads. By assuming Köhler theory and simulating the cloud nucleation process using a Lagrangian adiabatic air parcel model that solves the kinetic formulation for condensation of water on size resolved aerosol particles we inferred the properties of the unexplained non-water soluble aerosol fraction that is necessary for reproducing the observed concentrations of CCN. We propose that the portion of the internally/externally mixed water insoluble particles was larger in the corresponding smaller aerosol sizes ranges. These particles were physically and chemically behaving as polymer gels: the interaction of the hydrophilic and hydrophobic entities on the structures of polymer gels during cloud droplet activation would at first only show a partial wetting character and only weak hygroscopic growth. Given time, a high CCN activation efficiency is achieved, which is promoted by the hydrophilicity or surface-active properties of the gels. Thus the result in this study argues for that the behavior of the high Arctic aerosol in CCN-counters operating at water vapor supersaturations > 0.4% (high relative humidities) may not be

  19. Energy fluxes in a high Arctic tundra heath subjected to strong climate warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lund, M.; Hansen, B. U.; Pedersen, S. H.; Stiegler, C.; Tamstorf, M. P.

    2012-12-01

    During recent decades the observed warming in the Arctic has been almost twice as large as the global average. The implications of such strong warming on surface energy balance, regulating permafrost thaw, hydrology, soil stability and carbon mineralization, need to be assessed. In Zackenberg, northeast Greenland, measurements of energy balance components in various environments have been performed since late 90's, coordinated by Zackenberg Ecological Research Operations. During 1996-2009, mean annual temperature in the area has increased by ca. 0.15 °C yr-1; while maximum thaw depth has increased by 1.4-1.8 cm yr-1. Eddy covariance measurements of energy fluxes have been performed in a Cassiope heath plant community, a commonly occurring tundra ecosystem type in circumpolar middle and high Arctic areas, in Zackenberg allowing for detailed investigations of relationships between energy fluxes and meteorological and soil physical characteristics. As the available data set spans more than a decade, possible trends in energy flux components resulting from warming related changes such as earlier snow melt, increased active layer depth and higher temperatures can be investigated. This presentation will focus on the mid-summer period from which eddy covariance measurements are available. The summer-time energy partitioning at the Zackenberg tundra heath site will be characterized using ratios of sensible, latent and ground heat flux to net radiation and Bowen ratio, whereas the surface characteristics will be described using surface resistance, McNaughton and Jarvis Ω value and Priestley-Taylor α coefficient. Furthermore, we aim to estimate the full year, all energy balance components for the tundra heath site using Snow Model (Liston and Elder 2006) for the dark winter period during which no eddy covariance measurements are available. The snow cover duration in the area is a major regulator of the energy partitioning. Early results point towards high summer

  20. Maritime security in the High North : Swedish and Icelandic responses to new Arctic shipping opportunities

    OpenAIRE

    Lárusson, Erik

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to compare how the issue of new shipping opportunities in theArctic region is tackled and met by the governments of Sweden and Iceland when it comes tomaritime security regime building, and to set this into perspective by looking at the shippingindustry’s seemed aspirations and interests for Arctic shipping, the latter to see if policy and“reality” appear to be corresponding. By conducting a qualitative comparative analysisthrough studying previous research, gover...

  1. Stable isotopes and Digital Elevation Models to study nutrient inputs in high-Arctic lakes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calizza, Edoardo; Rossi, David; Costantini, Maria Letizia; Careddu, Giulio; Rossi, Loreto

    2016-04-01

    Ice cover, run-off from the watershed, aquatic and terrestrial primary productivity, guano deposition from birds are key factors controlling nutrient and organic matter inputs in high-Arctic lakes. All these factors are expected to be significantly affected by climate change. Quantifying these controls is a key baseline step to understand what combination of factors subtends the biological productivity in Arctic lakes and will drive their ecological response to environmental change. Basing on Digital Elevation Models, drainage maps, and C and N elemental content and stable isotope analysis in sediments, aquatic vegetation and a dominant macroinvertebrate species (Lepidurus arcticus Pallas 1973) belonging to Tvillingvatnet, Storvatnet and Kolhamna, three lakes located in North Spitsbergen (Svalbard), we propose an integrated approach for the analysis of (i) nutrient and organic matter inputs in lakes; (ii) the role of catchment hydro-geomorphology in determining inter-lake differences in the isotopic composition of sediments; (iii) effects of diverse nutrient inputs on the isotopic niche of Lepidurus arcticus. Given its high run-off and large catchment, organic deposits in Tvillingvatnet where dominated by terrestrial inputs, whereas inputs were mainly of aquatic origin in Storvatnet, a lowland lake with low potential run-off. In Kolhamna, organic deposits seem to be dominated by inputs from birds, which actually colonise the area. Isotopic signatures were similar between samples within each lake, representing precise tracers for studies on the effect of climate change on biogeochemical cycles in lakes. The isotopic niche of L. aricticus reflected differences in sediments between lakes, suggesting a bottom-up effect of hydro-geomorphology characterizing each lake on nutrients assimilated by this species. The presented approach proven to be an effective research pathway for the identification of factors subtending to nutrient and organic matter inputs and transfer

  2. Inorganic carbon in a high latitude estuary-fjord system in Canada's eastern Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turk, D.; Bedard, J. M.; Burt, W. J.; Vagle, S.; Thomas, H.; Azetsu-Scott, K.; McGillis, W. R.; Iverson, S. J.; Wallace, D. W. R.

    2016-09-01

    Rapidly changing conditions in the Arctic can have a significant impact on biogeochemical cycles and can be particularly important in high latitude estuary-fjord systems with abundant and diverse freshwater sources. This study provides a first look into the inorganic carbon system and its relation to freshwater sources in Cumberland Sound in the east coast of Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada. These data contribute to the very limited set of inorganic carbon measurements in high latitude estuary-fjord systems. During the ice-free conditions in August 2011, the meteoric freshwater fractions (MW) in the upper 40 m ranged from 11 to 21% and no sea ice melt (SIM) was present in the Sound. Surface waters were undersaturated with pCO2 (260 and 300 μatm), and DIC and TA ranged between 1779 and 1966 μmol DIC kg-1, and 1922 and 2140 μmol TA kg-1, respectively. Aragonite saturation (ΩAr) state ranged from 1.9 in the surface to 1.4 in the subsurface waters. Data show decreasing TA and ΩAr with increasing MW fraction and suggest that Cumberland Sound waters would become aragonite undersaturated (ΩAr water and glacial melt. In August 2012, MW fractions at the surface were between 8 and 11.5%, and SIM between 7 and 23%. Significant interannual variability of summertime SIM could potentially result in ΩAr undersaturation.

  3. Nonlinear thermal and moisture dynamics of high Arctic wetland polygons following permafrost disturbance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Godin

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Low-centre polygonal terrain developing within gentle sloping surfaces and lowlands in the high Arctic have a potential to retain snowmelt water in their bowl-shaped centre and as such are considered high latitude wetlands. Such wetlands in the continuous permafrost regions have an important ecological role in an otherwise generally arid region. In the valley of the glacier C-79 on Bylot Island (Nunavut, Canada, thermal erosion gullies are rapidly eroding the permafrost along ice wedges affecting the integrity of the polygons by breaching and collapsing the surrounding rims. While intact polygons were characterized by a relative homogeneity (topography, snow cover, maximum active layer thaw depth, ground moisture content, vegetation cover, eroded polygons had a non-linear response for the same elements following their perturbation. The heterogeneous nature of disturbed terrains impacts active layer thickness, ground ice aggradation in the upper portion of permafrost, soil moisture and vegetation dynamics, carbon storage and terrestrial green-house gas emissions.

  4. Diel Variation of Biogenic Volatile Organic Compound Emissions- A field Study in the Sub, Low and High Arctic on the Effect of Temperature and Light

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindwall, Frida; Faubert, Patrick; Rinnan, Riikka

    2015-01-01

    Many hours of sunlight in the midnight sun period suggest that significant amounts of biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) may be released from arctic ecosystems during night-time. However, the emissions from these ecosystems are rarely studied and limited to point measurements during daytime. We measured BVOC emissions during 24-hour periods in the field using a push-pull chamber technique and collection of volatiles in adsorbent cartridges followed by analysis with gas chromatography- mass spectrometry. Five different arctic vegetation communities were examined: high arctic heaths dominated by Salix arctica and Cassiope tetragona, low arctic heaths dominated by Salix glauca and Betula nana and a subarctic peatland dominated by the moss Warnstorfia exannulata and the sedge Eriophorum russeolum. We also addressed how climate warming affects the 24-hour emission and how the daytime emissions respond to sudden darkness. The emissions from the high arctic sites were lowest and had a strong diel variation with almost no emissions during night-time. The low arctic sites as well as the subarctic site had a more stable release of BVOCs during the 24-hour period with night-time emissions in the same range as those during the day. These results warn against overlooking the night period when considering arctic emissions. During the day, the quantity of BVOCs and the number of different compounds emitted was higher under ambient light than in darkness. The monoterpenes α-fenchene, α -phellandrene, 3-carene and α-terpinene as well as isoprene were absent in dark measurements during the day. Warming by open top chambers increased the emission rates both in the high and low arctic sites, forewarning higher emissions in a future warmer climate in the Arctic. PMID:25897519

  5. 北极公海渔业管理制度初探%A Study on the Fisheries Management of the Arctic High Seas

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    邹磊磊; 张侠; 邓贝西

    2015-01-01

    气候变化下的北极渔业发展备受瞩目。由于缺乏针对性管理制度与管理组织,北极公海渔业管理面临着挑战,而北极5国在渔业管理制度构建中所表现的主导意愿使北极渔业管理更趋复杂化。虽然未来北极公海渔业管理有很多可能的模式,变幻的自然环境、复杂的北极地缘政治、北极与非北极国家之间的博弈使北极渔业管理的走向未明。但是,本着实现北极渔业资源可持续性发展的目标,北极与非北极国家之间的国际合作才是构建合理、合法北极公海渔业管理制度的前提。%The Arctic fisheries under climate change have been an international concern .For lack of tailored management system and organizations ,the Arctic high seas fisheries management encounters vari‐ous challenges .What makes it worse is the stewardship that five Arctic coastal states are trying to impose on the construction of Arctic high seas fisheries management system .Although there are various possible patterns for the future Arctic high seas fisheries management ,it still remains unpredictable due to the changing climate ,complicated geopolitics in the Arctic ,and intense political game between Arctic coastal states and non‐Arctic coastal states .However ,the international cooperation between two parties is the es‐sential prerequisite for the sustainable development of the Arctic fisheries resources .

  6. Glacier mass balance in high-arctic areas with anomalous gravity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharov, A.; Rieser, D.; Nikolskiy, D.

    2012-04-01

    All known glaciological models describing the evolution of Arctic land- and sea-ice masses in changing climate treat the Earth's gravity as horizontally constant, but it isn't. In the High Arctic, the strength of the gravitational field varies considerably across even short distances under the influence of a density gradient, and the magnitude of free air gravity anomalies attains 100 mGal and more. On long-term base, instantaneous deviations of gravity can have a noticeable effect on the regime and mass budget of glaciological objects. At best, the gravity-induced component of ice mass variations can be determined on topographically smooth, open and steady surfaces, like those of arctic planes, regular ice caps and landfast sea ice. The present research is devoted to studying gravity-driven impacts on glacier mass balance in the outer periphery of four Eurasian shelf seas with a very cold, dry climate and rather episodic character of winter precipitation. As main study objects we had chosen a dozen Russia's northernmost insular ice caps, tens to hundreds of square kilometres in extent, situated in a close vicinity of strong gravity anomalies and surrounded with extensive fields of fast and/or drift ice for most of the year. The supposition about gravitational forcing on glacioclimatic settings in the study region is based on the results of quantitative comparison and joint interpretation of existing glacier change maps and available data on the Arctic gravity field and solid precipitation. The overall mapping of medium-term (from decadal to half-centennial) changes in glacier volumes and quantification of mass balance characteristics in the study region was performed by comparing reference elevation models of study glaciers derived from Russian topographic maps 1:200,000 (CI = 20 or 40 m) representing the glacier state as in the 1950s-1980s with modern elevation data obtained from satellite radar interferometry and lidar altimetry. Free-air gravity anomalies were

  7. Distribution and autecology of chrysophyte cysts from high Arctic Svalbard lakes: preliminary evidence of recent environmental change

    OpenAIRE

    Betts-Piper, Alexandra M.; Zeeb, Barbara A.; John P. Smol

    2004-01-01

    Chrysophycean stomatocyst assemblages were analysed from the sediments of 17 lakes and ponds from Svalbard as one component of a multi-proxy investigation of recent environmental change in the high Arctic. Sediment cores and water chemistry were collected from each of the study lakes, and chrysophyte stomatocysts were investigated from the top 0.25 cm of sediment (present-day) and bottom (i.e. bottom of short sediment core, pre-industrial) sediment samples. This study represents the first und...

  8. Significant Impact of Glacial Meltwater on the Pelagic Carbon Cycle in a High Arctic Greenland Fjord

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dalsgaard, Tage; Bruhn, Annette; Sejr, Mikael Kristian;

    2014-01-01

    Global warming has accelerated the melting of the Greenland Ice Cap (GIC) resulting in increased loading of coastal waters with meltwater and associated inorganic particles and organic matter, a development that is projected to be enhanced in the future. In Young Sound, North Eastern Greenland......, Carbon cycling in the water column was greatly influenced by meltwater from the GIC in summer 2011. Young Sound is a high arctic fjord (ca. 74° N) ca. 80 km long and 1 – 7 km wide ice free conditions from mid July to mid October. Meltwater was mainly delivered to the inner parts of the fjord creating...... in the innermost part to 48 m in the opening of the fjord and into the Greenland Sea. Nitrate concentrations were 3–12 µM at 80 m depth but decreased to below detection at the surface. Except for the innermost turbid part, the photic zone and the nitrate containing zone overlapped by 3-39 m. Integrated chlorophyll...

  9. Atmospheric mercury accumulation between 5900 and 800 calibrated years BP in the high arctic of Canada recorded by Peat Hummocks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Givelet, Nicolas; Roos-Barraclough, Fiona; Goodsite, Michael E.;

    2004-01-01

    In this paper, we present the first comprehensive long-term record of preanthropogenic rates of atmospheric mercury accumulation in dated peat deposits for the High Arctic of Canada. Geochemical studies of two peat hummocks from Bathurst Island, Nunavut reveal substantial inputs from soil dust...... (titanium), marine aerosols (bromine), and mineral-water interactions (uranium). Mercury, however, was supplied to these peat mounds exclusively by atmospheric deposition. Mercury concentration measurements and age dating of the peat profiles indicate rather constant natural "background" mercury flux of ca....... 1 microgram per square meter per year from 5900 to 800 calibrated years BP. These values are well within the range of the mercury fluxes reported from other Arctic locations, but also by peat cores from southern Canada that provide a record of atmospheric Hg accumulation extending back 8000 years...

  10. Diversity and characterization of mercury-resistant bacteria in snow, freshwater and sea-ice brine from the High Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Møller, Annette; Barkay, Tamar; Abu Al-Soud, Waleed;

    2011-01-01

    It is well-established that atmospheric deposition transports mercury from lower latitudes to the Arctic. The role of bacteria in the dynamics of the deposited mercury, however, is unknown. We characterized mercury-resistant bacteria from High Arctic snow, freshwater and sea-ice brine. Bacterial...... densities were 9.4 × 10(5), 5 × 10(5) and 0.9-3.1 × 10(3) cells mL(-1) in freshwater, brine and snow, respectively. Highest cultivability was observed in snow (11.9%), followed by freshwater (0.3%) and brine (0.03%). In snow, the mercury-resistant bacteria accounted for up to 31% of the culturable bacteria, but...

  11. Snow cover and extreme winter warming events control flower abundance of some, but not all species in high arctic Svalbard

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Semenchuk, Philipp R.; Elberling, Bo; Cooper, Elisabeth J.

    2013-01-01

    The High Arctic winter is expected to be altered through ongoing and future climate change. Winter precipitation and snow depth are projected to increase and melt out dates change accordingly. Also, snow cover and depth will play an important role in protecting plant canopy from increasingly more...... frequent extreme winter warming events. Flower production of many Arctic plants is dependent on melt out timing, since season length determines resource availability for flower preformation. We erected snow fences to increase snow depth and shorten growing season, and counted flowers of six species over 5......years, during which we experienced two extreme winter warming events. Most species were resistant to snow cover increase, but two species reduced flower abundance due to shortened growing seasons. Cassiope tetragona responded strongly with fewer flowers in deep snow regimes during years without extreme...

  12. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanke, Dennis; Freuling, Conrad M; Fischer, Susanne; Hueffer, Karsten; Hundertmark, Kris; Nadin-Davis, Susan; Marston, Denise; Fooks, Anthony R; Bøtner, Anette; Mettenleiter, Thomas C; Beer, Martin; Rasmussen, Thomas B; Müller, Thomas F; Höper, Dirk

    2016-07-01

    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 structure in

  14. Toward Improved Estimation of the Dynamic Topography and Ocean Circulation in the High Latitude and Arctic Ocean: The Importance of GOCE

    OpenAIRE

    J. Johannessen; Raj, R; Nilsen, J.; Pripp, T.; Knudsen, P.; Counillon, F.; Stammer, D.; Bertino, L.; Andersen, O; Serra, N.(Physik-Institut, Universität Zürich, Zurich, Switzerland); Koldunov, N.

    2014-01-01

    The Arctic plays a fundamental role in the climate system and shows significant sensitivity to anthropogenic climate forcing and the ongoing climate change. Accelerated changes in the Arctic are already observed, including elevated air and ocean temperatures, declines of the summer sea ice extent and sea ice thickness influencing the albedo and CO2 exchange, melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet and increased thawing of surrounding permafrost regions. In turn, the hydrological cycle in the high ...

  15. Fuel stores of juvenile waders on autumn migration in high arctic Canada

    OpenAIRE

    Lindström, Åke; Klaassen, Marcel; Piersma, Theunis; Holmgren, Noel; Wennerberg, Liv; Both, Christiaan

    2002-01-01

    Little is known about the fuel stores that arctic-breeding waders put on before departure from the breeding grounds. During a ship-based expedition to arctic Canada, we caught waders at seven, mainly coastal sites, within 68°-76°N and 139°-67°W, from 28 July to 31 August 1999. More than two hundred waders of twelve species were trapped, mainly White-rumped Calidris fuscicollis, Semipalmated C. pusilla, Baird’s C. bairdii and Buff-breasted Sandpipers Tryngites subruficollis. The vast majority ...

  16. Origin and temporal variability of unusually low δ13C-DOC values in two High Arctic catchments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hindshaw, R. S.; Lang, S. Q.; Bernasconi, S. M.; Heaton, T. H. E.; Lindsay, M. R.; Boyd, E. S.

    2016-04-01

    The stable carbon isotopic composition of dissolved organic matter (δ13C-DOC) reveals information about its source and extent of biological processing. Here we report the lowest δ13C-DOC values (-43.8‰) measured to date in surface waters. The streams were located in the High Arctic, a region currently experiencing rapid changes in climate and carbon cycling. Based on the widespread occurrence of methane cycling in permafrost regions and the detection of the pmoA gene, a proxy for aerobic methanotrophs, we conclude that the low δ13C-DOC values are due to organic matter partially derived from methanotrophs consuming biologically produced, 13C-depleted methane. These findings demonstrate the significant impact that biological activity has on the stream water chemistry exported from permafrost and glaciated environments in the Arctic. Given that the catchments studied here are representative of larger areas of the Arctic, occurrences of low δ13C-DOC values may be more widespread than previously recognized, with implications for understanding C cycling in these environments.

  17. A comparison of annual and seasonal carbon dioxide effluxes between subarctic Sweden and high-arctic Svalbard

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Björkman, Mats P.; Morgner, Elke; Björk, Robert G.;

    2010-01-01

    effluxes between snow regimes or vegetation types, indicating that spatial variability in winter soil CO2 effluxes are not directly linked to snow cover thickness or soil temperatures. Total winter emissions (0.004– 0.248 kg CO2 m–2) were found to be in the lower range of those previously described......Recent climate change predictions suggest altered patterns of winter precipitation across the Arctic. It has been suggested that the presence, timing and quantity of snow all affect microbial activity, thus influencing CO2 production in soil. In this study annual and seasonal emissions of CO2 were...... in order to evaluate the effect of snow depth on winter CO2 effluxes. Total annual emissions of CO2 from the sub-Arctic site (0.662–1.487 kg CO2 m–2 yr–1) were found to be more than double the emissions from the High-Arctic site (0.369–0.591 kg CO2 m–2 yr–1). There were no significant differences in winter...

  18. The shallow benthic food web structure in the high Arctic does not follow seasonal changes in the surrounding environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kędra, Monika; Kuliński, Karol; Walkusz, Wojciech; Legeżyńska, Joanna

    2012-12-01

    Seasonality, quality and quantity of food resources strongly affect fitness and survival of polar fauna. Most research conducted in polar areas has been carried out during the summer, rarely including aspects of seasonality; therefore, there are gaps in our knowledge of the structure of food webs in the Arctic, particularly information is lacking on the possible shifts in winter feeding strategies of organisms. This study is the first to compare potential shifts in benthic food-web structure between winter and summer in a shallow-water Arctic fjord (Kongsfjorden, Svalbard). Winter data were collected in March when conditions are representative of winter and when Arctic shallow benthic fauna is likely to be most affected by absence of fresh food supply as opposed to summer (August). Samples of particulate suspended organic matter (POM), settled organic matter, surface sediment and benthic organisms were taken and analyzed for stable isotopes signatures (δ13C and δ15N). Four relative trophic levels (TL) were distinguished in both winter and summer, and no differences in the structure of benthic food web were found between seasons. Our study shows that the shallow sublittoral benthos depends on primary production, fresh and reworked settled organic matter and, to a certain degree, on terrestrial input. We also demonstrate that shallow water polar benthic fauna is characterized by a high level of omnivory and feeds at multiple trophic levels showing strong resilience to changing seasonal conditions.

  19. Vegetation Feedbacks Explain Recent High-latitude Summer Warming in Alaskan Arctic and Boreal Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chapin, F. S.; Beringer, J.; Copass, C.; Epstein, H.; Lloyd, A.; Lynch, A.; McGuire, A. D.; Sturm, M.

    2002-12-01

    Although General Circulation Models predict the observed winter and spring warming at high latitudes, there is no obvious physical mechanism in the climate system that can account for the significant increase in summer temperatures that has occurred at high latitudes during the past 30 years. We demonstrate that vegetation-induced feedbacks in snow properties and summer energy exchange with the atmosphere explain this recent summer warming. A combination of stand-age reconstructions, repeat photography, and satellite measures of vegetation greenness demonstrate an expansion of the distribution and an infilling of shrubs in moist tundra and of trees in forest tundra. These vegetation changes increase the depth and thermal resistance of the snow pack, causing a 3oC increase in winter soil temperature and an increase in winter decomposition and nutrient mineralization, which enhance plant growth. These vegetation changes also increase summer heat transport to the atmosphere by increasing radiation absorption (lower albedo) and the proportion of absorbed energy that is transferred to the atmosphere as sensible heat. The resulting increase in atmospheric heating, on a unit-area basis, is similar to effects of a doubling of atmospheric carbon dioxide or a 2% change in solar constant, such as occurred at the last glacial-interglacial boundary. Simulations with the regional climate model ARCSyM indicate that a change from shrubless tundra to shrub-dominated tundra on the North Slope of Alaska would increase July mean temperature by 1.5 to 3.5 degrees C, with the warming effects extending south into the boreal forest of interior Alaska. If these vegetation feedbacks to regional warming are widespread, as suggested by indigenous knowledge and the satellite record, they are of sufficient magnitude to explain the summer warming that has recently been observed in northern Alaska and other regions of the circumpolar Arctic.

  20. Inorganic carbon in a high latitude estuary-fjord system in Canada's eastern Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turk, D.; Bedard, J. M.; Burt, W. J.; Vagle, S.; Thomas, H.; Azetsu-Scott, K.; McGillis, W. R.; Iverson, S. J.; Wallace, D. W. R.

    2016-09-01

    Rapidly changing conditions in the Arctic can have a significant impact on biogeochemical cycles and can be particularly important in high latitude estuary-fjord systems with abundant and diverse freshwater sources. This study provides a first look into the inorganic carbon system and its relation to freshwater sources in Cumberland Sound in the east coast of Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada. These data contribute to the very limited set of inorganic carbon measurements in high latitude estuary-fjord systems. During the ice-free conditions in August 2011, the meteoric freshwater fractions (MW) in the upper 40 m ranged from 11 to 21% and no sea ice melt (SIM) was present in the Sound. Surface waters were undersaturated with pCO2 (260 and 300 μatm), and DIC and TA ranged between 1779 and 1966 μmol DIC kg-1, and 1922 and 2140 μmol TA kg-1, respectively. Aragonite saturation (ΩAr) state ranged from 1.9 in the surface to 1.4 in the subsurface waters. Data show decreasing TA and ΩAr with increasing MW fraction and suggest that Cumberland Sound waters would become aragonite undersaturated (ΩAr < 1) at MW = 0.37 (95% CI: 0.29 to 0.56). Estimated local δ18O (-19.2‰) and TA (174 μmol TA kg-1) end-members indicate MW was most likely a mixture of river water and glacial melt. In August 2012, MW fractions at the surface were between 8 and 11.5%, and SIM between 7 and 23%. Significant interannual variability of summertime SIM could potentially result in ΩAr undersaturation.

  1. Microwave emission from high Arctic Sea ice during freeze-up

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollinger, J. P.; Troy, B. E.; Ramseier, R. O.; Asmus, K. W.; Hartman, M. F.; Luther, C. A.

    1984-09-01

    A cooperative sea ice remote sensing experiment was conducted in the eastern Beaufort Sea and Mould Bay area during the freeze-up period in October 1981. Airborne millimeter-wave imagery at 90, 140, and 220 GHz, and nadir microwave radiometric measurements at 19, 22, and 31 GHz, were made from a U. S. Naval Research Laboratory aircraft, while the Canadian Atmospheric Environment Service conducted an extensive concurrent surface measurement program. This study demonstrates for the first time the high-resolution capability of 90 GHz to investigate detailed ice morphology and to define ice types. The 140 and 220 GHz imagery is the first ever made of sea ice at these high frequencies. Emissivities are determined for young ice, second-year ice (SY), multiyear ice (MY), new ice, old shorefast ice, and open water. The young ice exhibits the emissivity typical of first-year (FY) ice types, i.e., near unity and independent of frequency. The emissivities of new ice and open water increase with frequency, and that of MY ice decreases with frequency. Those of SY ice and old shorefast ice, measured here for the first time, also decrease with frequency but are larger in value than the MY emissivity. Ice type discrimination is optimum at 90 GHz, i.e., the spread in microwave signature between FY ice and old ice (SY and MY) is greatest at 90 GHz. The MY emissivity is lower than that of open water at both 90 and 140 GHz. The measurements presented here provide a basis for development of algorithms to exploit the potential of the Mission Sensor Microwave/Imager (SSM/I) to be launched on a Defense Meteorological Satellite in 1985 and, in particular, the 85.5-GHz SSM/I channels for ice type, concentration, and edge determination.

  2. "We are not aliens, we're people, and we have rights." Canadian human rights discourse and high school climate for LGBTQ students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Catherine; Peter, Tracey

    2011-08-01

    Canadian law protects people from discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation, but our public schools do not fulfill their ethical and legal obligations where sexual and gender minority youth are concerned. This article reports on a national survey study on homophobia and transphobia in Canadian high schools. Participants (n = 3,607) were questioned about school climate, harassment, school attachment, and institutional interventions. We found that schools were neither safe nor respectful for sexual and gender minority students, and we argue that ongoing exposure to this situation undermines students' respect for the Charter of Rights and their faith in adults.

  3. Survival of rapidly fluctuating natural low winter temperatures by High Arctic soil invertebrates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Convey, Peter; Abbandonato, Holly; Bergan, Frode; Beumer, Larissa Teresa; Biersma, Elisabeth Machteld; Bråthen, Vegard Sandøy; D'Imperio, Ludovica; Jensen, Christina Kjellerup; Nilsen, Solveig; Paquin, Karolina; Stenkewitz, Ute; Svoen, Mildrid Elvik; Winkler, Judith; Müller, Eike; Coulson, Stephen James

    2015-12-01

    The extreme polar environment creates challenges for its resident invertebrate communities and the stress tolerance of some of these animals has been examined over many years. However, although it is well appreciated that standard air temperature records often fail to describe accurately conditions experienced at microhabitat level, few studies have explicitly set out to link field conditions experienced by natural multispecies communities with the more detailed laboratory ecophysiological studies of a small number of 'representative' species. This is particularly the case during winter, when snow cover may insulate terrestrial habitats from extreme air temperature fluctuations. Further, climate projections suggest large changes in precipitation will occur in the polar regions, with the greatest changes expected during the winter period and, hence, implications for the insulation of overwintering microhabitats. To assess survival of natural High Arctic soil invertebrate communities contained in soil and vegetation cores to natural winter temperature variations, the overwintering temperatures they experienced were manipulated by deploying cores in locations with varying snow accumulation: No Snow, Shallow Snow (30 cm) and Deep Snow (120 cm). Air temperatures during the winter period fluctuated frequently between +3 and -24 °C, and the No Snow soil temperatures reflected this variation closely, with the extreme minimum being slightly lower. Under 30 cm of snow, soil temperatures varied less and did not decrease below -12 °C. Those under deep snow were even more stable and did not decline below -2 °C. Despite these striking differences in winter thermal regimes, there were no clear differences in survival of the invertebrate fauna between treatments, including oribatid, prostigmatid and mesostigmatid mites, Araneae, Collembola, Nematocera larvae or Coleoptera. This indicates widespread tolerance, previously undocumented for the Araneae, Nematocera or Coleoptera, of

  4. High resilience in the Yamal-Nenets social-ecological system, West Siberian Arctic, Russia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbes, Bruce C; Stammler, Florian; Kumpula, Timo; Meschtyb, Nina; Pajunen, Anu; Kaarlejärvi, Elina

    2009-12-29

    Tundra ecosystems are vulnerable to hydrocarbon development, in part because small-scale, low-intensity disturbances can affect vegetation, permafrost soils, and wildlife out of proportion to their spatial extent. Scaling up to include human residents, tightly integrated arctic social-ecological systems (SESs) are believed similarly susceptible to industrial impacts and climate change. In contrast to northern Alaska and Canada, most terrestrial and aquatic components of West Siberian oil and gas fields are seasonally exploited by migratory herders, hunters, fishers, and domesticated reindeer (Rangifer tarandus L.). Despite anthropogenic fragmentation and transformation of a large proportion of the environment, recent socioeconomic upheaval, and pronounced climate warming, we find the Yamal-Nenets SES highly resilient according to a few key measures. We detail the remarkable extent to which the system has successfully reorganized in response to recent shocks and evaluate the limits of the system's capacity to respond. Our analytical approach combines quantitative methods with participant observation to understand the overall effects of rapid land use and climate change at the level of the entire Yamal system, detect thresholds crossed using surrogates, and identify potential traps. Institutional constraints and drivers were as important as the documented ecological changes. Particularly crucial to success is the unfettered movement of people and animals in space and time, which allows them to alternately avoid or exploit a wide range of natural and anthropogenic habitats. However, expansion of infrastructure, concomitant terrestrial and freshwater ecosystem degradation, climate change, and a massive influx of workers underway present a looming threat to future resilience.

  5. High resilience in the Yamal-Nenets social–ecological system, West Siberian Arctic, Russia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forbes, Bruce C.; Stammler, Florian; Kumpula, Timo; Meschtyb, Nina; Pajunen, Anu; Kaarlejärvi, Elina

    2009-01-01

    Tundra ecosystems are vulnerable to hydrocarbon development, in part because small-scale, low-intensity disturbances can affect vegetation, permafrost soils, and wildlife out of proportion to their spatial extent. Scaling up to include human residents, tightly integrated arctic social-ecological systems (SESs) are believed similarly susceptible to industrial impacts and climate change. In contrast to northern Alaska and Canada, most terrestrial and aquatic components of West Siberian oil and gas fields are seasonally exploited by migratory herders, hunters, fishers, and domesticated reindeer (Rangifer tarandus L.). Despite anthropogenic fragmentation and transformation of a large proportion of the environment, recent socioeconomic upheaval, and pronounced climate warming, we find the Yamal-Nenets SES highly resilient according to a few key measures. We detail the remarkable extent to which the system has successfully reorganized in response to recent shocks and evaluate the limits of the system's capacity to respond. Our analytical approach combines quantitative methods with participant observation to understand the overall effects of rapid land use and climate change at the level of the entire Yamal system, detect thresholds crossed using surrogates, and identify potential traps. Institutional constraints and drivers were as important as the documented ecological changes. Particularly crucial to success is the unfettered movement of people and animals in space and time, which allows them to alternately avoid or exploit a wide range of natural and anthropogenic habitats. However, expansion of infrastructure, concomitant terrestrial and freshwater ecosystem degradation, climate change, and a massive influx of workers underway present a looming threat to future resilience. PMID:20007776

  6. Fluxes of nitrates between snow surfaces and the atmosphere in the European high Arctic

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. J. Beine

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available Measurements of atmospheric and snow mixing ratios of nitrates and nitrites and their fluxes above the snow surface were made during two intensive campaigns during spring time 2001 at Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard as part of the EU project  "`The NItrogen Cycle and Effects on the oxidation of atmospheric trace species at high latitudes' (NICE. At this coastal site close to the unseasonably unfrozen fjord, of the measured nitrogen species, only HNO3 showed a significant flux on to the snow surface; a mean deposition of -8.7 nmol h-1 m-2 was observed in late April / early May 2001. These fluxes may be due to the reaction of HNO3 with sea salt, and especially NaCl, or may be simply uptake of HNO3 by ice, which is alkaline because of the sea salt in our marine environment. During snowfall periods dry deposition of HNO3 may contribute up to 10% of the N budget in the snow; however, the main source for N is wet deposition in falling snow. The surface snow at Ny-Ålesund showed very complex stratigraphy; the NO3- mixing ratio in snow varied between 65 and 520 ng g-1, the total NO3- content of the snowpack was on the order of 2700 ng cm-2. In comparison the atmospheric boundary layer column showed a NO3- content of only 8 ng cm-2. The limited exchange, however, between the snow and the atmosphere was attributed to low mobility of NO3- in the observed snow. Contrary to other Arctic sites (i.e. Alert, Nunavut or Summit, Greenland deposition of sea salt and crustal aerosols in this marine environment made the surface snow alkaline; snow NO3- was associated with heavier cations and was not readily available for physical exchange or photochemical reactions.

  7. Elevated levels of ingested plastic in a high Arctic seabird, the northern fulmar (Fulmarus glacialis)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Trevail, A.M.; Gabrielsen, G.W.; Kuhn, S.; Franeker, van J.A.

    2015-01-01

    Plastic pollution is of worldwide concern; however, increases in international commercial activity in the Arctic are occurring without the knowledge of the existing threat posed to the local marine environment by plastic litter. Here, we quantify plastic ingestion by northern fulmars, Fulmarus glaci

  8. Thermophilic anaerobes in arctic marine sediments induced to mineralize complex organic matter at high temperature

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hubert, Casey; Arnosti, Carol; Brüchert, Volker;

    2010-01-01

    Marine sediments harbour diverse populations of dormant thermophilic bacterial spores that become active in sediment incubation experiments at much higher than in situ temperature. This response was investigated in the presence of natural complex organic matter in sediments of two Arctic fjords, ...

  9. Surface morphology of fans in the high-Arctic periglacial environment of Svalbard : Controls and processes

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Haas, Tjalling; Kleinhans, Maarten G.; Carbonneau, Patrice E.; Rubensdotter, Lena; Hauber, Ernst

    2015-01-01

    Fan-shaped landforms occur in all climatic regions on Earth. They have been extensively studied in many of these regions, but there are few studies on fans in periglacial, Arctic and Antarctic regions. Fans in such regions are exposed to many site-specific environmental conditions in addition to the

  10. Increased accumulation of sulfur in lake sediments of the high Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Drevnick, Paul E.; Muir, Derek C.G.; Lamborg, Carl H.;

    2010-01-01

    stimulates dissimilatory sulfate reduction. The sulfide produced is stored in sediment (as acid volatile sulfide), converted to other forms of sulfur, or reoxidized to sulfate and lost to the water column. An acceleration of the sulfur cycle in Arctic lakes could have profound effects on important...

  11. The potential for microbial life in a Canadian high-level nuclear fuel waste disposal vault

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Recent studies have concluded that microbial contamination of a nuclear fuel waste disposal vault is inevitable. Factors that will affect the development of substantial population of micro-organisms include: physiological tolerance of microbes; fluid movement in a vault; availability of nutrients; and availability of energy sources. It is difficult to resolve whether microbial growth will either positively or negatively affect the performance of a vault. One of the necessary steps towards ultimately answering this question is to assess the potential for microbial growth in a disposal vault, based on a nutrient and energy budget. This report gives a quantitative (but conservative) inventory of nutrients and potential energy sources present in a Canadian nuclear fuel waste vault, which hypothetically could support the growth of micro-organisms. Maximum population densities are calculated based on these inventories and assuming that all conditions for microbial growth are optimal, although this will certainly not be the case. Laboratory studies under the vault-relevant conditions are being performed to put realistic boundaries on the calculated numbers. Initial results from these studies, combined with data from a natural analogue site indicate that the calculated population densities could be overestimated by four to five orders of magnitude. Limited data show no effect of the presence of microbes on the transport of Tc, I, and Sr in backfill sand columns. Additional work is needed to address transport effects on buffer and backfill clay columns

  12. Regional variability of acidification in the Arctic: a sea of contrasts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. E. Popova

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available The Arctic Ocean is a region that is particularly vulnerable to the impact of ocean acidification driven by rising atmospheric CO2, with potentially negative consequences for calcifying organisms such as coccolithophorids and foraminiferans. In this study, we use an ocean-only general circulation model, with embedded biogeochemistry and a comprehensive description of the ocean carbon cycle, to study the response of pH and saturation states of calcite and aragonite to rising atmospheric pCO2 and changing climate in the Arctic Ocean. Particular attention is paid to the strong regional variability within the Arctic, and, for comparison, simulation results are contrasted with those for the global ocean. Simulations were run to year 2099 using the RCP8.5 (an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC Fifth Assessment Report (AR5 scenario with the highest concentrations of atmospheric CO2. The separate impacts of the direct increase in atmospheric CO2 and indirect effects via impact of climate change (changing temperature, stratification, primary production and freshwater fluxes were examined by undertaking two simulations, one with the full system and the other in which atmospheric CO2 was prevented from increasing beyond its preindustrial level (year 1860. Results indicate that the impact of climate change, and spatial heterogeneity thereof, plays a strong role in the declines in pH and carbonate saturation (Ω seen in the Arctic. The central Arctic, Canadian Arctic Archipelago and Baffin Bay show greatest rates of acidification and Ω decline as a result of melting sea ice. In contrast, areas affected by Atlantic inflow including the Greenland Sea and outer shelves of the Barents, Kara and Laptev seas, had minimal decreases in pH and Ω because diminishing ice cover led to greater vertical mixing and primary production. As a consequence, the projected onset of undersaturation in respect to aragonite is highly variable regionally within the

  13. CO2, CH4, and DOC Flux During Long Term Thaw of High Arctic Tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stackhouse, B. T.; Vishnivetskaya, T. A.; Layton, A.; Bennett, P.; Mykytczuk, N.; Lau, C. M.; Whyte, L.; Onstott, T. C.

    2013-12-01

    Arctic regions are expected to experience temperature increases of >4° C by the end of this century. This warming is projected to cause a drastic reduction in the extent of permafrost at high northern latitudes, affecting an estimated 1000 Pg of SOC in the top 3 m. Determining the effects of this temperature change on CO2 and CH4 emissions is critical for defining source constraints to global climate models. To investigate this problem, 18 cores of 1 m length were collected in late spring 2011 before the thawing of the seasonal active layer from an ice-wedge polygon near the McGill Arctic Research Station (MARS) on Axel Heiberg Island, Nunavut, Canada (N79°24, W90°45). Cores were collected from acidic soil (pH 5.5) with low SOC (~1%), summertime active layer depth between 40-70 cm (2010-2013), and sparse vegetation consisting primarily of small shrubs and sedges. Cores were progressively thawed from the surface over the course of 14 weeks to a final temperature of 4.5° C and held at that temperature for 15 months under the following conditions: in situ water saturation conditions versus fully water saturated conditions using artificial rain fall, surface light versus no surface light, cores from the polygon edge, and control cores with a permafrost table maintained at 70 cm depth. Core headspaces were measured weekly for CO2, CH4, H2, CO, and O2 flux during the 18 month thaw experiment. After ~20 weeks of thawing maximum, CO2 flux for the polygon edge and dark treatment cores were 3.0×0.7 and 1.7×0.4 mmol CO2 m-2 hr-1, respectively. The CO2 flux for the control, saturated, and in situ saturation cores reached maximums of 0.6×0.2, 0.9×0.5, and 0.9×0.1 mmol CO2 m-2 hr-1, respectively. Field measurements of CO2 flux from an adjacent polygon during the mid-summer of 2011 to 2013 ranged from 0.3 to 3.7 mmol CO2 m-2 hr-1. Cores from all treatments except water saturated were found to consistently oxidize CH4 at ~atmospheric concentrations (2 ppmv) with a maximum

  14. Environmental marine geology of the Arctic Ocean

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    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 modern 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 1-4C 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 it is now clear that the Arctic Ocean has been the pacemaker of climate change during the past 1 million years

  15. Environmental marine geology of the Arctic Ocean

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    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

  16. Light Absorption in Arctic Sea Ice - Black Carbon vs Chlorophyll

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogunro, O. O.; Wingenter, O. W.; Elliott, S.; Hunke, E. C.; Flanner, M.; Wang, H.; Dubey, M. K.; Jeffery, N.

    2015-12-01

    The fingerprint of climate change is more obvious in the Arctic than any other place on Earth. This is not only because the surface temperature there has increased at twice the rate of global mean temperature but also because Arctic sea ice extent has reached a record low of 49% reduction relative to the 1979-2000 climatology. Radiation absorption through black carbon (BC) deposited on Arctic snow and sea ice surface is one of the major hypothesized contributors to the decline. However, we note that chlorophyll-a absorption owing to increasing biology activity in this region could be a major competitor during boreal spring. Modeling of sea-ice physical and biological processes together with experiments and field observations promise rapid progress in the quality of Arctic ice predictions. Here we develop a dynamic ice system module to investigate discrete absorption of both BC and chlorophyll in the Arctic, using BC deposition fields from version 5 of Community Atmosphere Model (CAM5) and vertically distributed layers of chlorophyll concentrations from Sea Ice Model (CICE). To this point, our black carbon mixing ratios compare well with available in situ data. Both results are in the same order of magnitude. Estimates from our calculations show that sea ice and snow around the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and Baffin Bay has the least black carbon absorption while values at the ice-ocean perimeter in the region of the Barents Sea peak significantly. With regard to pigment concentrations, high amounts of chlorophyll are produced in Arctic sea ice by the bottom microbial community, and also within the columnar pack wherever substantial biological activity takes place in the presence of moderate light. We show that the percentage of photons absorbed by chlorophyll in the spring is comparable to the amount attributed to BC, especially in areas where the total deposition rates are decreasing with time on interannual timescale. We expect a continuous increase in

  17. 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 sugges

  18. 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 an...

  19. Distribution of 226Ra in the Arctic Ocean and the Bering Sea and its hydrologic implications

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    邢娜; 陈敏; 黄奕普; 蔡平河; 邱雨生

    2003-01-01

    Radium-226 (226Ra) activities were measured in the surface water samples collected from the Arctic Ocean and the Bering Sea during the First Chinese National Arctic Research Expedition. The results showed that 226Ra concentrations in the surface water ranged from 0.28 to 1.56 Bq/m3 with an average of 0.76 Bq/m3 in the Arctic Ocean, and from 0.25 to 1.26 Bq/m3 with an average of 0.71 Bq/m3 in the Bering Sea. The values were obviously lower than those from open oceans in middle and low latitudes, indicating that the study area may be partly influenced by sea ice meltwater. In the Bering Sea, 226Ra in the surface water decreased northward, probably as a result of the exchange between the 226Ra-deficientsea ice meltwater and the 226Ra-rich Pacific water. In the Arctic Ocean, 226Ra in the surface water increased northward and eastward. This spatial distributionof 226Ra reflected the variation of the 226Ra-enriched river component in the water mass of the Arctic Ocean. The vertical profiles of 226Ra in the Canadian Basin showed a concentration maximum at 200 m, which could be attributed to the inputs of the Pacific water or/and the bottom shelf water with high 226Ra concentration. This conclusion was consistent with the results from 2H, 18O tracers.

  20. Size-resolved morphological properties of the high Arctic summer aerosol during ASCOS-2008

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamacher-Barth, Evelyne; Leck, Caroline; Jansson, Kjell

    2016-05-01

    The representation of aerosol properties and processes in climate models is fraught with large uncertainties. Especially at high northern latitudes a strong underprediction of aerosol concentrations and nucleation events is observed and can only be constrained by in situ observations based on the analysis of individual aerosol particles. To further reduce the uncertainties surrounding aerosol properties and their potential role as cloud condensation nuclei this study provides observational data resolved over size on morphological and chemical properties of aerosol particles collected in the summer high Arctic, north of 80° N. Aerosol particles were imaged with scanning and transmission electron microscopy and further evaluated with digital image analysis. In total, 3909 aerosol particles were imaged and categorized according to morphological similarities into three gross morphological groups: single particles, gel particles, and halo particles. Single particles were observed between 15 and 800 nm in diameter and represent the dominating type of particles (82 %). The majority of particles appeared to be marine gels with a broad Aitken mode peaking at 70 nm and accompanied by a minor fraction of ammonium (bi)sulfate with a maximum at 170 nm in number concentration. Gel particles (11 % of all particles) were observed between 45 and 800 nm with a maximum at 154 nm in diameter. Imaging with transmission electron microscopy allowed further morphological discrimination of gel particles in "aggregate" particles, "aggregate with film" particles, and "mucus-like" particles. Halo particles were observed above 75 nm and appeared to be ammonium (bi)sulfate (59 % of halo particles), gel matter (19 %), or decomposed gel matter (22 %), which were internally mixed with sulfuric acid, methane sulfonic acid, or ammonium (bi)sulfate with a maximum at 161 nm in diameter. Elemental dispersive X-ray spectroscopy analysis of individual particles revealed a prevalence of the monovalent

  1. Transitions in high-Arctic vegetation growth patterns and ecosystem productivity from 2000-2013 tracked with cameras

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Westergaard-Nielsen, Andreas; Lund, Magnus; Pedersen, Stine Højlund;

    2016-01-01

    The changes in vegetation seasonality at northern latitudes, resulting from changes in atmospheric temperatures and precipitation, are still not well understood. In this study we used 13 years of time lapse camera data and climate data from high-Arctic Northeast Greenland to assess the seasonal...... response of three vegetation types (dwarf shrub heath, grassland, and fen) to changes in snow cover, soil moisture, and air and soil temperatures. Based on the camera data, we computed a greenness index, which was subsequently used to analyze transition dates in vegetation seasonality. Snow cover...

  2. Chemical changes in the Arctic troposphere at polar sunrise

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    At polar sunrise, the Arctic troposphere (0 to ∼8 km) is a unique chemical reactor influenced by human activity and the Arctic Ocean. It is surrounded by industrialized continents that in winter contribute gaseous and particulate pollution (Arctic haze). It is underlain by the flat Arctic Ocean from which it is separated by a crack-ridden ice membrane 3 to 4 m thick. Ocean to atmosphere exchange of heat, water vapor and marine biogenic gases influence the composition of the reactor. From 21 September to 21 December to 21 March, the region north of the Arctic circle goes from a completely sunlit situation to a completely dark one and then back to light. At the same time the lower troposphere is stably stratified. This hinders vertical mixing. In this environment, chemical reactions involving sunlight are much slower than further south. Thus, it would not be surprising to find a high abundance of photochemically reactive compounds in the atmosphere at polar sunrise. Between complete dark in February and complete light in April, a number of chemical changes in the lower troposphere are observed. Perhaps the most sensational is the destruction of lower tropospheric ozone accompanied by production of filterable bromine and iodine. The latter are likely of marine origin, although their production may involve anthropogenic compounds. Another change is the shift in the fraction of total sulfur in its end oxidation state (VI) from 50% to 90%. Several gaseous hydrocarbons disappear from the atmosphere at this time. Preliminary observations also indicate a maximum in total non-black carbon on particulate matter. This is consistent with the formation of non-volatile organics from photochemically induced reactions of gas phase organics. Results of the Canadian Polar Sunrise Experiment 1988 are presented

  3. Climate Change Influences on Species Interrelationships and Distributions in High-Arctic Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    D. R., Klein; Bruun, H. H.; Lundgren, R.;

    2008-01-01

    , reproduction, and dispersal of all life forms present. Climate-associated changes in the biotic communities of the region are altering inter-species interactions, notably pollination, seed dispersal and plant-herbivore relations. Sexual reproduction and dispersal of propagules, primarily seeds, are essential...... be of particular significance to long-distance seed dispersal. In Northeast Greenland, dispersal of viable seeds may frequently occur by passage through the guts of geese and musk oxen. Research at Zackenberg on the role of insects in pollination of flowering plants has shown that Diptera species, primarily flies......, dominate among the insect species visiting flowers each summer. Diptera, Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths), Hymenoptera (bumble bees and small wasps), and one Hemiptera (true bugs) species have constituted the primary pollinators at Zackenberg. Arctic willow Salix arctica, white arctic bell heather...

  4. A green supply chain network design model for enhancing competitiveness and sustainability of companies in high north arctic regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hao Yu, Wei Deng Solvang, Chen Chen

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available To survive in today’s competitive and ever-changing marketplace, companies need not only to engage in their products and/or services, but also to focus on the management of the whole supply chain. Effectively managing and balancing the profitability and interconnection of each player in the supply chain will improve the overall supply chain surplus as well as individual profit. However, it is extremely difficult to simultaneously optimize several objectives in design and planning of a supply chain, i.e., cost-minimization, risk-minimization, responsiveness-maximization, etc., which are somehow conflict with one another. Furthermore, the natural and infrastructural challenges in high north arctic regions make it become much more difficult and complicated to design and develop cost-efficient, highly responsive, environmentally friendly, and sustainable supply chain network. In order to provide companies in high north arctic regions with decision support tool for the design and planning of theirs supply chain networks, a green supply chain network design (GrSCND model is formulated in this study based on multi-objective mixed integer programming (MIP. The optimal trade-off among several conflicting objectives is the focus of this GrSCND model aiming to enhance both competitive competence and sustainability of companies and supply chains operated in high north regions. In addition, a numerical experiment is also given to present a deep insight of the GrSCND model.

  5. Clock genes in a north Atlantic key zooplankter - Expression during overwintering in a high Arctic fjord

    OpenAIRE

    Häfker, N. Sören; Meyer, Bettina; Teschke, Mathias

    2016-01-01

    The copepod Calanus finmarchicus plays a crucial role in the north Atlantic food web, channelling energy from phytoplankton primary production to higher trophic levels including commercially important fish stocks like herring and cod. The copepod species is spreading northward into the Arctic due to ocean warming. The activity phase of C. finmarchicus in spring/summer is characterized by diel vertical migration, meaning that the animals migrate to surface waters around sunset to feed, and bac...

  6. Importance of aerosol composition and mixing state for cloud droplet activation in the high Arctic

    OpenAIRE

    Leck, C.; Svensson, E.

    2014-01-01

    Concentrations of cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) were measured throughout an expedition by icebreaker around the central Arctic Ocean, including a 3 week ice drift operation at 87° N, from 3 August to 9 September 2008. In agreement with previous observations in the area and season median daily CCN concentrations at 0.2% water vapor supersaturation were typically in the range of 15 to 30 cm−3, but concentrations varied by tw...

  7. Arctic Watch

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orcutt, John; Baggeroer, Arthur; Mikhalevsky, Peter; Munk, Walter; Sagen, Hanne; Vernon, Frank; Worcester, Peter

    2015-04-01

    The dramatic reduction of sea ice in the Arctic Ocean will increase human activities in the coming years. This will be driven by increased demand for energy and the marine resources of an Arctic Ocean more accessible to ships. Oil and gas exploration, fisheries, mineral extraction, marine transportation, research and development, tourism and search and rescue will increase the pressure on the vulnerable Arctic environment. Synoptic in-situ year-round observational technologies are needed to monitor and forecast changes in the Arctic atmosphere-ice-ocean system at daily, seasonal, annual and decadal scales to inform and enable sustainable development and enforcement of international Arctic agreements and treaties, while protecting this critical environment. This paper will discuss multipurpose acoustic networks, including subsea cable components, in the Arctic. These networks provide communication, power, underwater and under-ice navigation, passive monitoring of ambient sound (ice, seismic, biologic and anthropogenic), and acoustic remote sensing (tomography and thermometry), supporting and complementing data collection from platforms, moorings and autonomous vehicles. This paper supports the development and implementation of regional to basin-wide acoustic networks as an integral component of a multidisciplinary, in situ Arctic Ocean Observatory.

  8. The lichens Xanthoria elegans and Cetraria islandica maintain a high protection against UV-B radiation in Arctic habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nybakken, Line; Solhaug, Knut Asbjørn; Bilger, Wolfgang; Gauslaa, Yngvar

    2004-07-01

    This study reports UV screening pigments in the upper cortices of two widespread lichens collected in three sun-exposed locations along a latitudinal gradient from the Arctic lowland to alpine sites of the Central European Alps. Populations from the Alps receive 3-5 times higher UV-B irradiance than their Arctic counterparts from Svalbard because of latitudinal and altitudinal gradients in UV-B irradiance. In Cetraria islandica, the screening capacity of melanin in the upper cortices was assessed by direct measurements of cortical transmittance (250-1,000 nm). A comparison of cortical transmittances in brown sun-exposed and pale shade-adapted forest C. islandica thalli showed that fungal melanins strongly absorb both UV-B and photosynthetically active radiation (PAR). For Xanthoria elegans cortical UV-B absorbing pigments, mainly the orange parietin, were extracted and quantified. Field experiments with extracted, parietin-deficient X. elegans thalli cultivated under various filters showed that UV-B was essential for the induction of parietin synthesis. The parietin resynthesis in these parietin-deficient samples increased with decreasing latitude of their location in which they had been sampled, which may imply that the synthesis of pigments is habitat specific. However, no latitudinal gradient in cortical screening capacity was detected for any of the two species investigated in the field. This implies that Arctic populations maintain a high level of screening pigments in spite of low ambient UV-B, and that the studied lichen species presumably may tolerate an increase in UV-B radiation due to the predicted thinning of the ozone layer over polar areas.

  9. Recent wind driven high sea ice export in the Fram Strait contributes to Arctic sea ice decline

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. H. Smedsrud

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Arctic sea ice area decrease has been visible for two decades, and continues at a steady rate. Apart from melting, the southward drift through Fram Strait is the main loss. We present high resolution sea ice drift across 79° N from 2004 to 2010. The ice drift is based on radar satellite data and correspond well with variability in local geostrophic wind. The underlying current contributes with a constant southward speed close to 5 cm s−1, and drives about 33 % of the ice export. We use geostrophic winds derived from reanalysis data to calculate the Fram Strait ice area export back to 1957, finding that the sea ice area export recently is about 25 % larger than during the 1960's. The increase in ice export occurred mostly during winter and is directly connected to higher southward ice drift velocities, due to stronger geostrophic winds. The increase in ice drift is large enough to counteract a decrease in ice concentration of the exported sea ice. Using storm tracking we link changes in geostrophic winds to more intense Nordic Sea low pressure systems. Annual sea ice export likely has a significant influence on the summer sea ice variability and we find low values in the 60's, the late 80's and 90's, and particularly high values during 2005–2008. The study highlight the possible role of variability in ice export as an explanatory factor for understanding the dramatic loss of Arctic sea ice the last decades.

  10. Mining in the European Arctic

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2014-01-01

    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

  11. Arctic Sea Ice and Its Changes during the Satellite Period

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, X.; Liu, Y.; Key, J. R.

    2009-12-01

    Sea ice is a very important indicator and an effective modulator of regional and global climate change. Changes in sea ice will significantly affect the complex exchanges of momentum, heat, and mass between sea and the atmosphere, along with profound socio-economic influences due to its role in transportation, fisheries, hunting, polar animal habitat. Over the last two decades of the 20th century, the Arctic underwent significant changes in sea ice as part of the accelerated global warming of that period. More accurate, consistent, and detailed ice thickness, extent, and volume data are critical for a wide range of applications including climate change detection, climate modeling, and operational applications such as shipping and hazard mitigation. Satellite data provide an unprecedented opportunity to estimate and monitor Arctic sea ice routinely with relatively high spatial and temporal resolutions. In this study, a One-dimensional Thermodynamic Ice Model (OTIM) has been developed to estimate sea ice thickness based on the surface energy balance at a thermo-equilibrium state, containing all components of the surface energy balance. The OTIM has been extensively validated against submarine Upward-Looking Sonar (ULS) measurements, meteorological station measurements, and comprehensive numerical model simulations. Overall, OTIM-estimated sea ice thickness is accurate to within about 20% error when compared to submarine ULS ice thickness measurements and Canadian meteorological station measurements for ice less than 3 m. Along with sea ice extent information from the SSM/I, the Arctic sea ice volume can be estimated for the satellite period from 1984 to 2004. The OTIM has been used with satellite data from the extended Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) Polar Pathfinder (APP-x) products for the Arctic sea ice thickness, and sequentially sea ice volume estimations, and following statistical analysis of spatial and temporal distribution and trends in sea

  12. Communicating climate science to high school students in the Arctic: Adventure Learning @ Greenland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hougham, R. J.; Miller, B.; Cox, C. J.

    2012-12-01

    Adventure Learning @ Greenland (AL@GL) engaged high school students in atmospheric research in the Arctic and in local environments to enhance climate literacy. The overarching objective for this project was to support climate literacy in high school students, specifically the concept of energy exchange between the Earth, atmosphere, and space. The goal then is to produce a model of education and outreach for remote STEM research that can be used to meaningfully engage K-12 and public communities. Over the course of the program experience, students conducted scientific inquiry associated with their place that supported a more focused science content at a field location. Approximately 45 students participated in the hybrid learning environments as part of this project at multiple locations in Idaho, USA, and Greenland. In Greenland, the Summit Camp research station located on the Greenland Ice Sheet was the primary location. The AL@GL project provided a compelling opportunity to engage students in an inquiry-based curriculum alongside a cutting-edge geophysical experiment at Summit: the Integrated Characterization of Energy, Clouds, Atmospheric state, and Precipitation at Summit (ICECAPS) experiment. ICECAPS measures parameters that are closely tied to those identified in student misconceptions. Thus, ICECAPS science and the AL@ approach combined to create a learning environment that was practical, rich, and engaging. Students participating in this project were diverse, rural, and traditionally underrepresented. Groups included: students participating in a field school at Kangerlussuaq, Greenland and Summit Station as members of the JSEP; students at MOSS will were part of the Upward Bound Math Science (UBMS) and HOIST (Helping Orient Indian Students and Teachers) project. These project serve high school students who are first college generation and from low-income families. JSEP is an international group of students from the United States, Greenland, and Denmark

  13. Synoptic controls on the surface energy and water budgets in sub-arctic regions of Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrone, Richard M.; Rouse, Wayne R.

    2000-08-01

    An objective hybrid classification of daily surface weather maps for central and western Canadian sub-arctic locations was used to determine their dominant synoptic conditions during the snow free period. This classification yielded seven dominant synoptic types for each location during the snowmelt and snow-free periods (20 April-7 September), accounting for 90% of the days in period. The effects of source regions were used to explain the observed air mass characteristics, and their influence on the respective study locations. Cooler, drier air masses were the most frequent at both study locations. Arctic high pressure cells to the northeast brought the coolest air to the western sub-arctic site, Trail Valley Creek (TVC), Northwest Territories, while high pressure systems approaching from the northwest brought the coolest conditions to the central sub-arctic site, Churchill, Manitoba. Sub-tropical high pressure approaching from the west-southwest brought warm air to TVC, whereas stationary high pressure to the south warmed Churchill. These synoptic regimes exerted strong controls on the precipitation and evaporation components of the water balance as observed in terms of cloud cover, radiation and precipitation and evaporation efficiencies.

  14. Proxy Constraints on a Warm, Fresh Late Cretaceous Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Super, J. R.; Li, H.; Pagani, M.; Chin, K.

    2015-12-01

    The warm Late Cretaceous is thought to have been characterized by open Arctic Ocean temperatures upwards of 15°C (Jenkyns et al., 2004). The high temperatures and low equator-to-pole temperature gradient have proven difficult to reproduce in paleoclimate models, with the role of the atmospheric hydrologic cycle in heat transport being particularly uncertain. Here, sediments, coprolites and fish teeth of Santonian-Campanian age from two high-latitude mixed terrestrial and marine sections on Devon Island in the Canadian High Arctic (Chin et al., 2008) were analyzed using a suite of organic and inorganic proxies to evaluate the temperature and salinity of Arctic seawater. Surface temperature estimates were derived from TEX86 estimates of near-shore, shallow (~100 meters depth) marine sediments (Witkowski et al., 2011) and MBT-CBT estimates from terrestrial intervals and both suggest mean annual temperatures of ~20°C, consistent with previous estimates considering the more southerly location of Devon Island. The oxygen isotope composition of non-diagenetic phosphate from vertebrate coprolites and bony fish teeth were then measured, giving values ranging from +13‰ to +19‰. Assuming the TEX86 temperatures are valid and using the temperature calibration of Puceat 2010, the δ18O values of coprolites imply Arctic Ocean seawater δ18O values between -4‰ and -10‰, implying very fresh conditions. Lastly, the δD of precipitation will be estimated from the hydrogen isotope composition of higher plant leaf waxes (C-25, C-27, C-29 and C-31 n-alkanes) from both terrestrial and marine intervals. Data are used to model the salinity of seawater and the meteoric relationship between δD and δ18O, thereby helping to evaluate the northern high-latitude meteoric water line of the Late Cretaceous.

  15. Coastal mapping and modelling of Tuktoyaktuk Harbour, Western Arctic, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manson, G. K.

    2015-12-01

    Climate models suggest that sea ice in the Arctic is expected to decrease and that the frequency of storms bringing high waves and storm surges is expected to increase. Reduced sea ice, higher waves, and higher storm surge water levels have implications for coastal infrastructure, nearshore sediment transport, and rates of coastal change. Tuktoyaktuk is an important shipping terminal servicing the petroleum industry and Inuvialuit communities in the western Canadian Arctic. The hydrodynamic model Delft3D is used to model sediment transport in Tuktoyaktuk Harbour and the approaches. For nearshore applications, Delft3D works best with a seamless coastal digital elevation model (DEM). A DEM was constructed from a variety of sources. Terrestrial LiDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) uses an infrared laser to construct a detailed elevation model of the terrestrial coastal zone. Multibeam bathymetry uses arrays of acoustic signals to collect detailed of the subaqueous coastal zone. Bathymetry data, and charts from the Canadian Hydrographic Service supplement the offshore bathymetry. The shoreline is derived from CanCoast, a nationally consistent geospatial database of Canada's marine coasts. The Coastal Information System (CIS) supplements CanCoast and describes coastal geomorphology in local areas. With these data, Delft3D delivered wave, current, and sediment transport data in a common reference frame. When compared to measurements, the model successfully simulates waves and currents. Output from Delft3D was mapped into a Geographic Information System, and combined with other data to help an Arctic community and industries adapt to potential climate-related hazards .

  16. Investigating the occurrence of persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in the arctic: their atmospheric behaviour and interaction with the seasonal snow pack

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    POPs in the Arctic are the focus of international concern due to their occurrence and accumulation in Arctic food webs. This paper presents an overview of the major pathways into the Arctic and details contemporary studies that have focused on the occurrence and transfer of POPs between the major Arctic compartments, highlighting areas where there is a lack of quantitative information. The behaviour of these chemicals in the Arctic atmosphere is scrutinised with respect to long-term trends and seasonal behaviour. Subtle differences between the PCBs and OC pesticides are demonstrated and related to sources outside of the Arctic as well as environmental processes within the Arctic. Unlike temperate regions, contaminant fate is strongly affected by the presence of snow and ice. A description of the high Arctic snow pack is given and the physical characteristics that determine chemical fate, namely the specific surface area of snow and wind driven ventilation, are discussed. Using a well-characterised fresh snow event observed at Alert (Canadian high Arctic) [Atmos. Environ. 36(2002) 2767] the flux of γ-HCH out of the snow is predicted following snow ageing. Under conditions of wind (10 m/s) it is estimated that ∼75% of the chemical may be re-emitted to the atmosphere within 24 h following snowfall, compared with just ∼5% under conditions of no wind. The implications of this are raised and areas of further research suggested. - The fluxes and fate of POPs in snowpacks are key to their behaviour in polar systems

  17. Collaborative Research: Towards Advanced Understanding and Predictive Capability of Climate Change in the Arctic Using a High-Resolution Regional Arctic Climate Model

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cassano, John [Principal Investigator

    2013-06-30

    The primary research task completed for this project was the development of the Regional Arctic Climate Model (RACM). This involved coupling existing atmosphere, ocean, sea ice, and land models using the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) Community Climate System Model (CCSM) coupler (CPL7). RACM is based on the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) atmospheric model, the Parallel Ocean Program (POP) ocean model, the CICE sea ice model, and the Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) land model. A secondary research task for this project was testing and evaluation of WRF for climate-scale simulations on the large pan-Arctic model domain used in RACM. This involved identification of a preferred set of model physical parameterizations for use in our coupled RACM simulations and documenting any atmospheric biases present in RACM.

  18. School bus travel is associated with bullying victimization among Canadian male, but not female, middle and high school students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sampasa-Kanyinga, Hugues; Chaput, Jean-Philippe; Hamilton, Hayley A; Larouche, Richard

    2016-08-01

    Previous research has found a link between active school transportation and bullying victimization among school-aged children. However, the link with other school travel modes (such as car, school bus, and public transportation) and bullying victimization is largely unknown. The purpose of this study was to investigate the association between school travel mode and report of bullying victimization among Canadian middle and high school students. The sample consisted of 5065 students aged 11-20 years (mean age: 15.2±1.9 years; 56% females) who participated in the 2013 Ontario Students Drug Use and Health Survey (OSDUHS). Overall, 24.7% of students reported school bullying victimization in the past year. Females (27.2%) were more likely than males (22.3%) to be victims of school bullying (pbullying victimization among males, but not females. However, the use of public transportation to get to school was associated with lower odds of bullying victimization compared to active transportation among females only (OR=0.59; 95% CI=0.36-0.97). These findings suggest that school travel mode should be considered when considering risks for bullying victimization. Bullying prevention efforts should target school buses to make children's commute a safe and enjoyable experience. PMID:27376652

  19. Junior High School Students' Career Plans for the Future: A Canadian Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bardick, Angela D.; Bernes, Kerry B.; Magnusson, Kris C.; Witko, Kim D.

    2006-01-01

    This study uses the Comprehensive Career Needs Survey to assess the career plans of junior high school students in Southern Alberta, Canada. Junior high students are asked (a) what they plan to do after they leave high school; (b) their confidence in finding an occupation they enjoy, obtaining training or education, and finding work in their…

  20. Record-low primary productivity and high plant damage in the Nordic Arctic Region in 2012 caused by multiple weather events and pest outbreaks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bjerke, Jarle W.; Rune Karlsen, Stein; Arild Høgda, Kjell; Malnes, Eirik; Jepsen, Jane U.; Lovibond, Sarah; Vikhamar-Schuler, Dagrun; Tømmervik, Hans

    2014-08-01

    The release of cold temperature constraints on photosynthesis has led to increased productivity (greening) in significant parts (32-39%) of the Arctic, but much of the Arctic shows stable (57-64%) or reduced productivity (browning, factors dampening the greening effect of more maritime regions have remained elusive. Here we show how multiple anomalous weather events severely affected the terrestrial productivity during one water year (October 2011-September 2012) in a maritime region north of the Arctic Circle, the Nordic Arctic Region, and contributed to the lowest mean vegetation greenness (normalized difference vegetation index) recorded this century. Procedures for field data sampling were designed during or shortly after the events in order to assess both the variability in effects and the maximum effects of the stressors. Outbreaks of insect and fungal pests also contributed to low greenness. Vegetation greenness in 2012 was 6.8% lower than the 2000-11 average and 58% lower in the worst affected areas that were under multiple stressors. These results indicate the importance of events (some being mostly neglected in climate change effect studies and monitoring) for primary productivity in a high-latitude maritime region, and highlight the importance of monitoring plant damage in the field and including frequencies of stress events in models of carbon economy and ecosystem change in the Arctic. Fourteen weather events and anomalies and 32 hypothesized impacts on plant productivity are summarized as an aid for directing future research.

  1. The alien terrestrial invertebrate fauna of the High Arctic archipelago of Svalbard: potential implications for the native flora and fauna

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stephen J. Coulson

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Experience from the Antarctic indicates that the establishment of alien species may have significant negative effects on native flora and fauna in polar regions and is considered to be amongst the greatest threats to biodiversity. But, there have been few similar studies from the Arctic. Although the terrestrial invertebrate inventory of the Svalbard Archipelago is amongst the most complete for any region of the Arctic, no consideration has yet been made of alien terrestrial invertebrate species, their invasiveness tendencies, threat to the native biology or their route of entry. Such baseline information is critical for appropriate management strategies. Fifteen alien invertebrate species have established in the Svalbard environment, many of which have been introduced via imported soils. Biosecurity legislation now prohibits such activities. None of the recorded established aliens yet show invasive tendencies but some may have locally negative effects. Ten species are considered to be vagrants and a further seven are classified as observations. Vagrants and the observations are not believed to be able to establish in the current tundra environment. The high connectivity of Svalbard has facilitated natural dispersal processes and may explain why few alien species are recorded compared to isolated islands in the maritime Antarctic. The vagrant species observed are conspicuous Lepidoptera, implying that less evident vagrant species are also arriving regularly. Projected climate change may enable vagrant species to establish, with results that are difficult to foresee.

  2. 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.

  3. Mercury and methylmercury concentrations in high altitude lakes and fish (Arctic charr) from the French Alps related to watershed characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marusczak, Nicolas; Larose, Catherine; Dommergue, Aurélien; Paquet, Serge; Beaulne, Jean-Sébastien; Maury-Brachet, Régine; Lucotte, Marc; Nedjai, Rachid; Ferrari, Christophe P

    2011-04-15

    Total mercury (THg) and methylmercury (MeHg) concentrations were measured in the muscle of Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) and in the water column of 4 lakes that are located in the French Alps. Watershed characteristics were determined (6 coverage classes) for each lake in order to evaluate the influence of watershed composition on mercury and methylmercury concentrations in fish muscle and in the water column. THg and MeHg concentrations in surface water were relatively low and similar among lakes and watershed characteristics play a major role in determining water column Hg and MeHg levels. THg muscle concentrations for fish with either a standardized length of 220mm, a standardized age of 5 years or for individualuals did not exceed the 0.5mg kg(-1) fish consumption advisory limit established for Hg by the World Health Organization (WHO, 1990). These relatively low THg concentrations can be explained by watershed characteristics, which lead to short Hg residence time in the water column, and also by the short trophic chain that is characteristic of mountain lakes. Growth rate did not seem to influence THg concentrations in fish muscles of these lakes and we observed no relationship between fish Hg concentrations and altitude. This study shows that in the French Alps, high altitude lakes have relatively low THg and MeHg concentrations in both the water column and in Arctic charr populations. Therefore, Hg does not appear to present a danger for local populations and the fishermen of these lakes.

  4. Kelp and seaweed feeding by High-Arctic wild reindeer under extreme winter conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brage Bremset Hansen

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available One challenge in current Arctic ecological research is to understand and predict how wildlife may respond to increased frequencies of “extreme” weather events. Heavy rain-on-snow (ROS is one such extreme phenomenon associated with winter warming that is not well studied but has potentially profound ecosystem effects through changes in snow-pack properties and ice formation. Here, we document how ice-locked pastures following substantial amounts of ROS forced coastal Svalbard reindeer (Rangifer tarandus platyrhynchus to use marine habitat in late winter 2010. A thick coat of ground ice covered 98% of the lowland ranges, almost completely blocking access to terrestrial forage. Accordingly, a population census revealed that 13% of the total population (n=26 of 206 individuals and 21% of one sub-population were feeding on washed-up kelp and seaweed on the sea-ice foot. Calves were overrepresented among the individuals that applied this foraging strategy, which probably represents a last attempt to avoid starvation under particularly severe foraging conditions. The study adds to the impression that extreme weather events such as heavy ROS and associated icing can trigger large changes in the realized foraging niche of Arctic herbivores.

  5. Comparison of publically available Moho depth and crustal thickness grids with newly derived grids by 3D gravity inversion for the High Arctic region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lebedeva-Ivanova, Nina; Gaina, Carmen; Minakov, Alexander; Kashubin, Sergey

    2016-04-01

    We derived Moho depth and crustal thickness for the High Arctic region by 3D forward and inverse gravity modelling method in the spectral domain (Minakov et al. 2012) using lithosphere thermal gravity anomaly correction (Alvey et al., 2008); a vertical density variation for the sedimentary layer and lateral crustal variation density. Recently updated grids of bathymetry (Jakobsson et al., 2012), gravity anomaly (Gaina et al, 2011) and dynamic topography (Spasojevic & Gurnis, 2012) were used as input data for the algorithm. TeMAr sedimentary thickness grid (Petrov et al., 2013) was modified according to the most recently published seismic data, and was re-gridded and utilized as input data. Other input parameters for the algorithm were calibrated using seismic crustal scale profiles. The results are numerically compared with publically available grids of the Moho depth and crustal thickness for the High Arctic region (CRUST 1 and GEMMA global grids; the deep Arctic Ocean grids by Glebovsky et al., 2013) and seismic crustal scale profiles. The global grids provide coarser resolution of 0.5-1.0 geographic degrees and not focused on the High Arctic region. Our grids better capture all main features of the region and show smaller error in relation to the seismic crustal profiles compare to CRUST 1 and GEMMA grids. Results of 3D gravity modelling by Glebovsky et al. (2013) with separated geostructures approach show also good fit with seismic profiles; however these grids cover the deep part of the Arctic Ocean only. Alvey A, Gaina C, Kusznir NJ, Torsvik TH (2008). Integrated crustal thickness mapping and plate recon-structions for the high Arctic. Earth Planet Sci Lett 274:310-321. Gaina C, Werner SC, Saltus R, Maus S (2011). Circum-Arctic mapping project: new magnetic and gravity anomaly maps of the Arctic. Geol Soc Lond Mem 35, 39-48. Glebovsky V.Yu., Astafurova E.G., Chernykh A.A., Korneva M.A., Kaminsky V.D., Poselov V.A. (2013). Thickness of the Earth's crust in the

  6. Record-low primary productivity and high plant damage in the Nordic Arctic Region in 2012 caused by multiple weather events and pest outbreaks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bjerke, Jarle W.; Rune Karlsen, Stein; Arild Høgda, Kjell; Malnes, Eirik; Jepsen, Jane U.; Lovibond, Sarah; Vikhamar-Schuler, Dagrun; Tømmervik, Hans

    2014-08-01

    The release of cold temperature constraints on photosynthesis has led to increased productivity (greening) in significant parts (32-39%) of the Arctic, but much of the Arctic shows stable (57-64%) or reduced productivity (browning, insect and fungal pests also contributed to low greenness. Vegetation greenness in 2012 was 6.8% lower than the 2000-11 average and 58% lower in the worst affected areas that were under multiple stressors. These results indicate the importance of events (some being mostly neglected in climate change effect studies and monitoring) for primary productivity in a high-latitude maritime region, and highlight the importance of monitoring plant damage in the field and including frequencies of stress events in models of carbon economy and ecosystem change in the Arctic. Fourteen weather events and anomalies and 32 hypothesized impacts on plant productivity are summarized as an aid for directing future research.

  7. Impact of active layer detachments on carbon exchange in a high-Arctic ecosystem, Cape Bounty, Nunavut, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, N. A.; Beamish, A.; Neil, A.; Wagner, I.

    2011-12-01

    High Arctic ecosystems are experiencing some of the earliest and most extreme changes in climate, including increases in both temperature and precipitation leading to a deepening and destabilization of the active layer. This destabilization of shallow slopes can lead to disturbances such as active layer detachments (ALD), which could further alter soil temperature and moisture regimes, potentially releasing carbon (C) and nutrients previously unavailable to soil microbes. We explored the impact of ALD's on carbon dioxide (CO2) exchange at the Cape Bounty Arctic Watershed Observatory on Melville Island, Canada over two growing seasons. CO2 exchange under light and dark conditions was measured approximately every five to nine days across both growing seasons for a total of five sampling day in 2009 and nine sampling days in 2010. Sampling was stratified to include highly disturbed, moderately disturbed, and undisturbed areas. Transparent static chambers were equipped with a Vaisala GMP343 CO2 sensor to measure changes in CO2 concentration over time. Based on static chamber C flux measurements during the growing seasons of 2009 and 2010, we found that the moderately disturbed sites were net sinks of CO2 (-6.44gC m-2 season-1, -8.21gC m-2 season-1, respectively). The highly disturbed sites however were net sources of CO2 in both seasons (3.01gC m-2 season-1, 30.01gC m-2 season-1, respectively). Control sites in 2009 were a net C sink (-6.48gC m-2 season-1) while in 2010 they represented a net C source (16.75gC m-2 season-1). Overall, the formation of ALD's led to highly disturbed areas (roughly 40% of the area of an ALD) becoming C sources, but appeared to enhance C uptake in moderately disturbed areas. Active layer depth explained little of the variation in any of the C fluxes, while combinations of soil moisture, temperature, and air temperature explained up to roughly 40% of the variation in C fluxes. These findings have important implications if temperature and

  8. The Pasternak Case and American Gender Equity Policy: Implications for Canadian High School Athletics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beaubier, Dean M.; Gadbois, Shannon A.; Stick, Sheldon L.

    2011-01-01

    In 2004 twin sisters Amy and Jesse Pasternak competed for the prospect of playing high school hockey, vying for the boys' team rather than the girls'. The sisters' opportunities were negated by the Manitoba High School Athletic Association (MHSAA). This paper examines the 2006 decision by the Manitoba Human Rights Commission and a 2008 judgment by…

  9. Seasonal Change in Trophic Niche of Adfluvial Arctic Grayling (Thymallus arcticus) and Coexisting Fishes in a High-Elevation Lake System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cutting, Kyle A.; Cross, Wyatt F.; Anderson, Michelle L.; Reese, Elizabeth G.

    2016-01-01

    Introduction of non-native species is a leading threat to global aquatic biodiversity. Competition between native and non-native species is often influenced by changes in suitable habitat or food availability. We investigated diet breadth and degree of trophic niche overlap for a fish assemblage of native and non-native species inhabiting a shallow, high elevation lake system. This assemblage includes one of the last remaining post-glacial endemic populations of adfluvial Arctic grayling (Thymallus arcticus) in the contiguous United States. We examined gut contents and stable isotope values of fish taxa in fall and spring to assess both short- (days) and long-term (few months) changes in trophic niches. We incorporate these short-term (gut contents) data into a secondary isotope analysis using a Bayesian statistical framework to estimate long-term trophic niche. Our data suggest that in this system, Arctic grayling share both a short- and long-term common food base with non-native trout of cutthroat x rainbow hybrid species (Oncorhynchus clarkia bouvieri x Oncorhynchus mykiss) and brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis). In addition, trophic niche overlap among Arctic grayling, hybrid trout, and brook trout appeared to be stronger during spring than fall. In contrast, the native species of Arctic grayling, burbot (Lota lota), and suckers (Catostomus spp.) largely consumed different prey items. Our results suggest strong seasonal differences in trophic niche overlap among Arctic grayling and non-native trout, with a potential for greatest competition for food during spring. We suggest that conservation of endemic Arctic grayling in high-elevation lakes will require recognition of the potential for coexisting non-native taxa to impede well-intentioned recovery efforts. PMID:27205901

  10. The Holocene History of Nares Strait: Transition from Glacial Bay to Arctic-Atlantic Throughflow

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jennings, Anne; Sheldon, Christina; Cronin, Thomas;

    2011-01-01

    Retreat of glacier ice from Nares Strait and other straits in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago after the end of the last Ice Age initiated an important connection between the Arctic and the North Atlantic Oceans, allowing development of modern ocean circulation in Baffin Bay and the Labrador Sea. ...

  11. Variation in bird's originating nitrogen availability limits High Arctic tundra development over last 2000 year (Hornsund, Svalbard)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skrzypek, Grzegorz; Wojtuń, Bronisław; Hua, Quan; Richter, Dorota; Jakubas, Dariusz; Wojczulanis-Jakubas, Katarzyna; Samecka-Cymerman, Aleksandra

    2016-04-01

    Arctic and subarctic regions play important roles in the global carbon balance. However, nitrogen (N) deficiency is a major constraint for organic carbon sequestration in the High Arctic. Hence, the identification of the relative contributions from different N-sources is critical for understanding the constraints that limit tundra growth. The stable nitrogen composition of the three main N-sources and numerous plants were analyzed in ten tundra types (including those influenced by seabirds) in the Fuglebekken catchment (Hornsund, Svalbard, 77°N 15°E). The percentage of the total tundra N-pool provided by seabirds' feces (from planktivorous colonially breeding little auks Alle alle), ranged from 0-21% in Patterned-ground tundra to 100% in Ornithocoprophilous tundra. The total N-pool utilized by tundra plants in the studied catchment originated from birds (36%), atmospheric deposition (38%), and N2-fixation (26%). The results clearly show that N-pool in the tundra is significantly supplemented by nesting seabirds. Thus, if they experienced climate change induced substantial negative environmental pressure, it would adversely influence the tundra N-budget (Skrzypek et al. 2015). The growth rates and the sediment thickness (bird-N rich tundra with very diverse ages ranging from 235 to 2300 cal BP and thickness up to 110 cm. The growth rates for this tundra (62 cm core, 18 AMS 14C dates) were high (1.5-3.0 mm/yr) between 1568 and 1804 AD and then substantially declined for the period between 1804 and 1929 AD (0.2 mm/yr). These findings deliver an additional argument, that the organic matter accumulation is driven not only directly by climatic conditions but also by birds' contribution to the tundra N-pool. Skrzypek G, Wojtuń B, Richter D, Jakubas D, Wojczulanis-Jakubas K, Samecka-Cymerman A, 2015. Diversification of nitrogen sources in various tundra vegetation types in the high Arctic. PLoS ONE 10(9): e0136536.

  12. The influence of weather conditions on the activity of high-arctic arthropods inferred from long-term observations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Høye Toke T

    2008-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Climate change is particularly pronounced in the High Arctic and a better understanding of the repercussions on ecological processes like herbivory, predation and pollination is needed. Arthropods play an important role in the high-arctic ecosystem and this role is determined by their density and activity. However, density and activity may be sensitive to separate components of climate. Earlier emergence due to advanced timing of snowmelt following climate change may expose adult arthropods to unchanged temperatures but higher levels of radiation. The capture rate of arthropods in passive open traps like pitfall trap integrates density and activity and, therefore, serves as a proxy of the magnitude of such arthropod-related ecological processes. We used arthropod pitfall trapping data and weather data from 10 seasons in high-arctic Greenland to identify climatic effects on the activity pattern of nine arthropod taxa. Results We were able to statistically separate the variation in capture rates into a non-linear component of capture date (density and a linear component of weather (activity. The non-linear proxy of density always accounted for more of the variation than the linear component of weather. After accounting for the seasonal phenological development, the most important weather variable influencing the capture rate of flying arthropods was temperature, while surface-dwelling species were principally influenced by solar radiation. Conclusion Consistent with previous findings, air temperature best explained variation in the activity level of flying insects. An advancement of the phenology in this group due to earlier snowmelt will make individuals appear earlier in the season, but parallel temperature increases could mean that individuals are exposed to similar temperatures. Hence, the effect of climatic changes on the activity pattern in this group may be unchanged. In contrast, we found that solar radiation is a

  13. Empirical Requirements Analysis for Mars Surface Operations Using the Flashline Mars Arctic Research Station

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clancey, William J.; Lee, Pascal; Sierhuis, Maarten; Norvig, Peter (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Living and working on Mars will require model-based computer systems for maintaining and controlling complex life support, communication, transportation, and power systems. This technology must work properly on the first three-year mission, augmenting human autonomy, without adding-yet more complexity to be diagnosed and repaired. One design method is to work with scientists in analog (mars-like) setting to understand how they prefer to work, what constrains will be imposed by the Mars environment, and how to ameliorate difficulties. We describe how we are using empirical requirements analysis to prototype model-based tools at a research station in the High Canadian Arctic.

  14. Balloon Demonstrator Imaging Fourier Transform Spectrometer for the Measurement of Methane and Carbon Dioxide over the Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vaziri Z., Zahra; McElroy, Charles T.; Feng, Keh-Harng; Moeini, Omid; Walker, Kaley A.; Martin, Randall; Grandmont, Frederic J.

    2015-04-01

    Arctic climate is changing more rapidly than expected. Multi-year ice is melting and opening the way for shipping and exploration activity for natural resources which in turn increases air pollution. Observing greenhouse gases on a global scale is essential to monitor climate change, especially in the Arctic. Several space missions monitor trace gasses but are in low-earth, sun synchronous orbits and do not have a 24/7 view of northern latitudes. The Canadian Space Agency (CSA), along with other Canadian government departments, is proposing the Polar Communications and Weather (PCW) satellite to provide weather, communication and atmospheric composition information over the Arctic. The use of two satellites in out-of-phase highly elliptical three-apogee orbits with an apogee at ~40,000 km over the Arctic, will provide continuous quasi-geostationary viewing of the northern latitudes. The planned meteorological instrument for the PCW mission is a 21-channel spectral imager with UV, visible, NIR and MIR channels, similar to MODIS and ABI, capable of measuring several different trace gasses. This paper will focus on the development of an Imaging Fourier Transform Spectrometer (IFTS) to be flown on a high-altitude balloon to demonstrate the capacity to monitor methane and carbon dioxide in the Arctic as part of the PHEOS-WCA (Polar Highly Elliptical Orbit Science - Weather, Climate and Air quality) instrument suit; a science complement to the PCW mission. Funding through the CSA Flights for the Advancement of Science and Technology (FAST) program is in place to develop the demonstrator IFTS to show that measurements of methane and carbon dioxide can be collected from space in the 1.6 µm band. The characteristics of the instrument and plans for the balloon flight will be discussed and details of the PCW mission and PHEOS-WCA component will be presented. The authors acknowledge support of the PHEOS-WCA science team.

  15. Permanent prostate implant using high activity seeds and inverse planning with fast simulated annealing algorithm: A 12-year Canadian experience

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Purpose: To report outcomes and toxicity of the first Canadian permanent prostate implant program. Methods and Materials: 396 consecutive patients (Gleason ≤6, initial prostate specific antigen (PSA) ≤10 and stage T1-T2a disease) were implanted between June 1994 and December 2001. The median follow-up is of 60 months (maximum, 136 months). All patients were planned with fast-simulated annealing inverse planning algorithm with high activity seeds ([gt] 0.76 U). Acute and late toxicity is reported for the first 213 patients using a modified RTOG toxicity scale. The Kaplan-Meier biochemical failure-free survival (bFFS) is reported according to the ASTRO and Houston definitions. Results: The bFFS at 60 months was of 88.5% (90.5%) according to the ASTRO (Houston) definition and, of 91.4% (94.6%) in the low risk group (initial PSA ≤10 and Gleason ≤6 and Stage ≤T2a). Risk factors statistically associated with bFFS were: initial PSA >10, a Gleason score of 7-8, and stage T2b-T3. The mean D90 was of 151 ± 36.1 Gy. The mean V100 was of 85.4 ± 8.5% with a mean V150 of 60.1 ± 12.3%. Overall, the implants were well tolerated. In the first 6 months, 31.5% of the patients were free of genitourinary symptoms (GUs), 12.7% had Grade 3 GUs; 91.6% were free of gastrointestinal symptoms (GIs). After 6 months, 54.0% were GUs free, 1.4% had Grade 3 GUs; 95.8% were GIs free. Conclusion: The inverse planning with fast simulated annealing and high activity seeds gives a 5-year bFFS, which is comparable with the best published series with a low toxicity profile

  16. FRAM-2012: Norwegians return to the High Arctic with a Hovercraft for Marine Geophysical Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hall, J. K.; Kristoffersen, Y.; Brekke, H.; Hope, G.

    2012-12-01

    After four years of testing methods, craft reliability, and innovative equipment, the R/H SABVABAA has embarked on its first FRAM-201x expedition to the highest Arctic. Named after the Inupiaq word for 'flows swiftly over it', the 12m by 6m hovercraft has been home-based in Longyearbyen, Svalbard since June 2008. In this, its fifth summer of work on the ice pack north of 81N, the craft is supported by the Norwegian Petroleum Directorate (NPD) via the Nansen Environmental and Remote Sensing Center (NERSC) in Bergen, and the Norwegian Scientific Academy for Polar Research. FRAM-2012 represents renewed Norwegian interest in returning to the highest Arctic some 116 years after the 1893-96 drift of Fridtjof Nansen's ship FRAM, the first serious scientific investigation of the Arctic. When replenished by air or icebreaker, the hovercraft Sabvabaa offers a hospitable scientific platform with crew of two, capable of marine geophysical, geological and oceanographic observations over long periods with relative mobility on the ice pack. FRAM-2012 is the first step towards this goal, accompanying the Swedish icebreaker ODEN to the Lomonosov Ridge, north of Greenland, as part of the LOMROG III expedition. The science plan called for an initial drive from the ice edge to Gakkel Ridge at 85N where micro-earthquakes would be monitored, and then to continue north to a geological sampling area on the Lomonosov Ridge at about 88N, 65W. The micro-earthquake monitoring is part of Gaute Hope's MSc thesis and entails five hydrophones in a WiFi-connected hydrophone array deployed over the Gakkel Rift Valley, drifting with the ice at up to 0.4 knots. On August 3 the hovercraft was refueled from icebreaker ODEN at 84-21'N and both vessels proceeded north. The progress of the hovercraft was hampered by insufficient visibility for safe driving and time consuming maneuvering in and around larger fields of rubble ice impassable by the hovercraft, but of little concern to the icebreaker. It

  17. Gullies on Mars: Origin by Snow and Ice Melting and Potential for Life Based on Possible Analogs from Devon Island, High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Pascal; Cockell, Charles S.; McKay, Christopher P.

    2004-01-01

    Gullies on Devon Island, High Arctic, which form by melting of transient surface ice and snow covers and offer morphologic and contextual analogs for gullies reported on Mars are reported to display enhancements in biological activity in contrast to surrounding polar desert terrain.

  18. Bacterial community structure in High-Arctic snow and freshwater as revealed by pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes and cultivation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Møller, Annette K.; Søborg, Ditte A.; Abu Al-Soud, Waleed;

    2013-01-01

    The bacterial community structures in High-Arctic snow over sea ice and an ice-covered freshwater lake were examined by pyrosequencing of 16S rRNA genes and 16S rRNA gene sequencing of cultivated isolates. Both the pyrosequence and cultivation data indicated that the phylogenetic composition...

  19. Signal and distribution of volatile Mercury (Hg0) in the Marine High Arctic During Polar Summer in the Sequel of Enhanced Atmospheric Deposition of HgⅡ

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jonas O. Sommar; Maria E. Andersson

    2008-01-01

    @@ 1 Introduction It has been elucidated that high levels of neurotoxic mercury (Hg) in the Arctic is related to a rapid, near-compete depletion of Hg0 (MDE) in the atmospheric boundary-layer occurring episodically during the Polar spring[1].

  20. Quantifying the Mass Balance of Ice Caps on Severnaya Zemlya, Russian High Arctic. I: Climate and Mass Balance of the Vavilov Ice Cap

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bassford, R.P.; Siegert, M.J.; Dowdeswell, J.A.; Oerlemans, J.; Glazovsky, A.F.; Macheret, Y.Y.

    2006-01-01

    Due to their remote location within the Russian High Arctic, little is known about the mass balance of ice caps on Severnaya Zemlya now and in the past. Such information is critical, however, to building a global picture of the cryospheric response to climate change. This paper provides a numerical

  1. Beyond the Barriers: Marking the Place for Marijuana Use at a Canadian High School

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Joy L.; Moffat, Barbara; Bottorff, Joan; Shoveller, Jean; Fischer, Benedikt; Haines, Rebecca J.

    2008-01-01

    This ethnographic study aimed at developing a richer understanding of how youth, their schools, and the communities in which they are emplaced coincide to generate a set of local social processes that affect marijuana use. We trace the interplay between high school staff and students with regards to marijuana use in the proximity of a local high…

  2. Soil 4 Youth: Charting New Territory in Canadian High School Soil Science Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krzic, Maja; Wilson, Julie; Basiliko, Nathan; Bedard-Haughn, Angela; Humphreys, Elyn; Dyanatkar, Saeed; Hazlett, Paul; Strivelli, Rachel; Crowley, Chris; Dampier, Lesley

    2014-01-01

    As global issues continue to place increasing demands on soil resources, the need to provide soil science education to the next generation of soil scientists and the general public is becoming more imminent. In many countries around the world, including Canada, soil is either not included in the high school curriculum or it is not covered in…

  3. Modelling temperature-dependent heat production over decades in High Arctic coal waste rock piles

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hollesen, Jørgen; Elberling, Bo; Jansson, P.E.

    2011-01-01

    to 10 °C higher than the mean annual air temperature of -5.8 °C. Subsurface temperatures are currently decreasing with 0.5 °C per year due to decreasing heat production, which can be modelled using an exponential decay function corresponding to a half-life period of pyrite oxidation of 7 years......Subsurface heat production from oxidation of pyrite is an important process that may increase subsurface temperatures within coal waste rock piles and increase the release of acid mine drainage, AMD. Waste rock piles in the Arctic are especially vulnerable to changes in subsurface temperatures...... biological and chemical oxidation processes and heat source depletion over time. Inputs to the model are meteorological measurements, physical properties of the waste rock material and measured subsurface heat-production rates. Measured mean annual subsurface temperatures within the waste rock pile are up...

  4. Arctic species resilience

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mortensen, Lars O.; Forchhammer, Mads C.; Jeppesen, Erik

    The peak of biological activities in Arctic ecosystems is characterized by a relative short and intense period between the start of snowmelt until the onset of frost. Recent climate changes have induced larger seasonal variation in both timing of snowmelt as well as changes mean temperatures and ...... and resources. This poster will present the conceptual framework for this project focusing on species resilience......., an extensive monitoring program has been conducted in the North Eastern Greenland National Park, the Zackenberg Basic. The objective of the program is to provide long time series of data on the natural innate oscillations and plasticity of a High Arctic ecosystem. With offset in the data provided through...

  5. Arctic smoke – record high air pollution levels in the European Arctic due to agricultural fires in Eastern Europe in spring 2006

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Stohl

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available In spring 2006, the European Arctic was abnormally warm, setting new historical temperature records. During this warm period, smoke from agricultural fires in Eastern Europe intruded into the European Arctic and caused the most severe air pollution episodes ever recorded there. This paper confirms that biomass burning (BB was indeed the source of the observed air pollution, studies the transport of the smoke into the Arctic, and presents an overview of the observations taken during the episode. Fire detections from the MODIS instruments aboard the Aqua and Terra satellites were used to estimate the BB emissions. The FLEXPART particle dispersion model was used to show that the smoke was transported to Spitsbergen and Iceland, which was confirmed by MODIS retrievals of the aerosol optical depth (AOD and AIRS retrievals of carbon monoxide (CO total columns. Concentrations of halocarbons, carbon dioxide and CO, as well as levoglucosan and potassium, measured at Zeppelin mountain near Ny Ålesund, were used to further corroborate the BB source of the smoke at Spitsbergen. The ozone (O3 and CO concentrations were the highest ever observed at the Zeppelin station, and gaseous elemental mercury was also elevated. A new O3 record was also set at a station on Iceland. The smoke was strongly absorbing – black carbon concentrations were the highest ever recorded at Zeppelin – and strongly perturbed the radiation transmission in the atmosphere: aerosol optical depths were the highest ever measured at Ny Ålesund. We furthermore discuss the aerosol chemical composition, obtained from filter samples, as well as the aerosol size distribution during the smoke event. Photographs show that the snow at a glacier on Spitsbergen became discolored during the episode and, thus, the snow albedo was reduced. Samples of this polluted snow contained strongly elevated levels of potassium, sulphate, nitrate and ammonium ions, thus relating the discoloration to the

  6. Seasonal fluxes and age of particulate organic carbon exported from Arctic catchments impacted by localized permafrost slope disturbances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamoureux, Scott F.; Lafrenière, Melissa J.

    2014-04-01

    Projected warming is expected to alter the Arctic permafrost regime with potential impacts on hydrological fluxes of particulate organic carbon (POC) and sediment. Previous work has focused on large Arctic basins and revealed the important contribution of old carbon in river POC, but little is known about POC fluxes from smaller coastal watersheds, particularly where widespread postglacial raised marine sediments represent a potential source of old soil carbon that could be mobilized by permafrost disturbance. To evaluate these processes, the characteristics of POC, particulate nitrogen (PN) and suspended sediment transport from paired small coastal Arctic watersheds subject to recent permafrost disturbance were investigated at the Cape Bounty Arctic Watershed Observatory (CBAWO) in the Canadian High Arctic. Approximately 2% of the total suspended sediment load from both watersheds was composed of POC and the majority of the sediment and POC fluxes occurred during the spring snowmelt period. Radiocarbon analysis of POC indicates recent permafrost disturbances deliver substantially older POC to the aquatic system. Localized permafrost slope disturbances have a measurable influence on downstream POC age and dominate (estimated up to 78% of POC) sediment fluxes during summer baseflow. The elevation of disturbances and Holocene emergence data show limited age sensitivity of POC to the location of disturbance and suggest slope failures are likely to deliver carbon with a relatively similar age range to the aquatic system, regardless of landscape location.

  7. Seasonal fluxes and age of particulate organic carbon exported from Arctic catchments impacted by localized permafrost slope disturbances

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Projected warming is expected to alter the Arctic permafrost regime with potential impacts on hydrological fluxes of particulate organic carbon (POC) and sediment. Previous work has focused on large Arctic basins and revealed the important contribution of old carbon in river POC, but little is known about POC fluxes from smaller coastal watersheds, particularly where widespread postglacial raised marine sediments represent a potential source of old soil carbon that could be mobilized by permafrost disturbance. To evaluate these processes, the characteristics of POC, particulate nitrogen (PN) and suspended sediment transport from paired small coastal Arctic watersheds subject to recent permafrost disturbance were investigated at the Cape Bounty Arctic Watershed Observatory (CBAWO) in the Canadian High Arctic. Approximately 2% of the total suspended sediment load from both watersheds was composed of POC and the majority of the sediment and POC fluxes occurred during the spring snowmelt period. Radiocarbon analysis of POC indicates recent permafrost disturbances deliver substantially older POC to the aquatic system. Localized permafrost slope disturbances have a measurable influence on downstream POC age and dominate (estimated up to 78% of POC) sediment fluxes during summer baseflow. The elevation of disturbances and Holocene emergence data show limited age sensitivity of POC to the location of disturbance and suggest slope failures are likely to deliver carbon with a relatively similar age range to the aquatic system, regardless of landscape location. (paper)

  8. "Bin Laden Is Responsible; It Was Shown on Tape": Canadian High School Students' Historical Understanding of Terrorism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levesque, Stephane

    2003-01-01

    The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, have had tragic effects for history teachers and students in Canada, the United States, and abroad. Yet, despite increased educational research in historical thinking, very little is known about students' historical understanding of terrorism. This exploratory study looks at some Canadian, but…

  9. Effects of increased snow cover on the rates and sources of ecosystem respiration from high arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lupascu, M.; Welker, J. M.; Cooper, E.; Xu, X.; Czimczik, C. I.

    2013-12-01

    A key driver of carbon (C) cycling in arctic ecosystems is the amount, onset and duration of snow cover. Arctic tundra is covered in snow for 8-10 months of the year, although spatial and internannual variability of snow cover is high. Anticipated changes in the amount and timing of snow cover as a consequence of climate warming and their implications for regional C budget and biogeochemistry are highly uncertain. Here, we investigated the effects of increased winter snow depth on the rates and sources of ecosystem respiration (Reco) of a polar semi-desert and mesic meadow at two long-term snowpack manipulation experiments in NW Greenland and Svalbard, Norway. We monitored Reco, the concentrations of CO2 in the soil pore space and their radiocarbon (14C) contents (as an age proxy) over the course of three summers in Greenland and one winter in Svalbard. Preliminary results show that wintertime Reco fluxes were 45% higher in areas of deep as compared to ambient snow. Summertime Reco fluxes were positively correlated to total water-year precipitation (summer rain plus winter snow). However, due to the shorter, snow-free vegetation period, cumulative summertime Reco fluxes under increased snow cover were reduced by up to -34.1×5.4% compared to the control. The mean age of soil CO2 was always older during both the winter- and summertime under increased snow cover. Similarly, the mean age of Reco was older under increased snowpack during the wintertime. However, summertime Reco was dominated by decomposition of younger C and plant respiration, and we found no effect of snow cover. Our results demonstrate the vulnerability of permafrost C to increasing snow cover and the strong potential to serve as a positive feedback to global climate change.

  10. A comparison of organic contaminants in two high Arctic lake ecosystems, Bjørnøya (Bear Island), Norway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evenset, Anita; Christensen, Guttorm N; Skotvold, Trond; Fjeld, Eirik; Schlabach, Martin; Wartena, Elleke; Gregor, Dennis

    2004-01-01

    Lake Ellasjøen and Lake Øyangen are two high Arctic lake ecosystem located on the island Bjørnøya (74 degrees 30' N, 19 degrees 00' E) in the Barents Sea. High levels of persistent organic pollutants (POPs), especially PCB and p,p'-DDE, were found in sediment and biota from Lake Ellasjøen while levels were several times lower in Lake Øyangen. Stable isotope signatures (delta15N) in comparable organisms (e.g. zooplankton, Arctic char) collected from both the lakes were also significantly different. The values of delta15N were 6-10 per thousand higher in the organisms from Ellasjøen than from Øyangen. In both Ellasjøen and Øyangen, a statistically significant correlation (P<0.05) was found between the levels of PCB and DDT, and delta15N values in organisms indicating enhanced bioaccumulation for higher trophical level lake organisms. As the lakes on Bjørnøya are remote, more than 500 km from any known point source, the presence of POPs is most likely the result of long-range transport of contaminants to the area. The observed higher contaminant concentrations associated with the Ellasjøen ecosystem is attributed to two factors. Ellasjøen is located in the southern, mountainous part of Bjørnøya and it is likely that this area receives more precipitation, and thereby more airborne contaminants, than the flatter areas further north on the island (i.e. the area around Øyangen). In addition, higher delta15N-levels in organisms from Ellasjøen as compared to Øyangen indicate the input of guano from seabirds using the lake as a resting area as an additional source of POPs to Ellasjøen. PMID:14654280

  11. Phenology of high-arctic butterflies and their floral resources: species-specific responses to climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    T.T. Høye; A. Eskildsen; R.R. Hansen; J.J. Bowden; N.M. Schmidt; W.D. Kissling

    2014-01-01

    Current global warming is particularly pronounced in the Arctic and arthropods are expected to respond rapidly to these changes. Long-term studies of individual arthropod species from the Arctic are, however, virtually absent. We examined butterfly specimens collected from yellow pitfall traps over

  12. Early Holocene variability in the Arctic Gateway - High-resolution records reflecting Atlantic Water advection and ice coverage

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spielhagen, Robert F.; Bauch, Henning A.; Maudrich, Martin; Not, Christelle; Telesinski, Maciej M.; Werner, Kirstin

    2015-04-01

    The Arctic Gateway between Greenland and Svalbard is the main passage for the advection of Atlantic Water to the Arctic Ocean. Water temperature and intensity of this advection largely determine the degree of ice coverage which is fed by sea ice export from the north. Supported by a maximum in insolation, the Early Holocene was a period of extraordinarily strong advection and relatively high near-surface water temperatures in the eastern Nordic Seas (cf. Risebrobakken et al., 2011, Paleoceanography v. 26). Here we present a synthesis of radiocarbon-dated records from the northern and western part of this area, reaching from the SW Greenland Sea (73°N) to the Yermak Plateau (81°N) and revealing temporal and spatial differences in the development of the so-called Holocene Thermal Maximum (HTM). In the northern part of this region, the HTM started ca. 11-10.5 ka as indicated by rapidly increasing amounts of subpolar planktic foraminifers in the sediments. In the eastern Fram Strait and on the Yermak Plateau, our records of (sub)millennial scale resolution show that the maximum influx terminated already 2,000 years later (9-8 ka). Most likely, this development went along with a N-S relocation of the sea ice margin. According to the current stratigraphic model for a core with submillennial-scale resolution from Vesterisbanken seamount (73°N) in the Greenland Sea, the timing was different there. Increasing total amounts of planktic foraminifers in the sediment indicate an early (11-10 ka) reduction in sea ice coverage also in this region. However, evidence from subpolar planktic foraminifers for maximum Atlantic Water advection is younger (9-6 ka) than in the north. Apparently, the site in the SW Greenland Sea was affected by Atlantic Water in the Greenland Gyre that decoupled from the northward flowing Norwegian Atlantic Current/Westspitsbergen Current south of the Fram Strait. Thus, in a suite of events, strong Atlantic Water advection first affected the

  13. Arctic bioremediation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cleanup of oil and diesel spills on gravel pads in the Arctic has typically been accomplished by utilizing a water flushing technique to remove the gross contamination or excavating the spill area and placing the material into a lined pit, or a combination of both. Enhancing the biological degradation of hydrocarbon (bioremediation) by adding nutrients to the spill area has been demonstrated to be an effective cleanup tool in more temperate locations. However, this technique has never been considered for restoration in the Arctic because the process of microbial degradation of hydrocarbon in this area is very slow. The short growing season and apparent lack of nutrients in the gravel pads were thought to be detrimental to using bioremediation to cleanup Arctic oil spills. This paper discusses the potential to utilize bioremediation as an effective method to clean up hydrocarbon spills in the northern latitudes

  14. Circumpolar Arctic greening: Relationships to summer sea-ice concentrations, land temperatures and disturbance regimes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, D. A.; Bhatt, U. S.; Epstein, H. E.; Raynolds, M. K.; Frost, G. V.; Leibman, M. O.; Khomutov, A.; Jia, G.; Comiso, J. C.; Pinzon, J. E.; Tucker, C. J.; Webber, P. J.; Tweedie, C. E.

    2009-12-01

    The global distribution of Arctic tundra vegetation is closely tied to the presence of summer sea ice. Models predict that the reduction of sea ice will cause large changes to summer land-surface temperatures. Warming combined with increased natural and anthropogenic disturbance are expected to greatly increase arctic tundra productivity. To examine where tundra productivity is changing most rapidly, we studied 1982-2008 trends of sea-ice concentrations, summer warmth index (SWI) and the annual Maximum Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (MaxNDVI). We summarize the results according to the tundra adjacent to 14 Arctic seas. Sea-ice concentrations have declined and summer land temperatures have increased in all parts of the Arctic coast. The overall percentage increase in Arctic MaxNDVI was +7%. The trend was much greater in North America (+11%) than in Eurasia (+4%). Large percentage increases of MaxNDVI occurred inland from Davis Straight (+20%), Baffin Bay (+18%), Canadian Archipelago (+14%), Beaufort Sea (+12%), and Laptev Sea (+8%). Declines occurred in the W. Chukchi (-6%) and E. Bering (-5%) seas. The changes in NDVI are strongly correlated to changes in summer ground temperatures. Two examples from a 900-km north-south Arctic transect in Russia and long-term observations at a High Arctic site in Canada provide insights to where the changes in productivity are occurring most rapidly. At tree line near Kharp in northwest Siberia, alder shrubs are expanding vigorously in fire-disturbed areas; seedling establishment is occurring primarily in areas with disturbed mineral soils, particularly nonsorted circles. In the Low Arctic tundra areas of the central Yamal Peninsula greening is concentrated in riparian areas and upland landslides associated with degrading massive ground ice, where low-willow shrublands replace the zonal sedge, dwarf-shrub tundra growing on nutrient-poor sands. In polar desert landscapes near the Barnes Ice Cap, Baffin Island, Canada

  15. An evaluation of a Canadian peer-driven injury prevention programme for high-risk adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tenn, L; Dewis, M E

    1996-02-01

    The mortality and morbidity resulting from serious trauma in adolescence, particularly head and spinal cord injury, constitutes a health problem of major proportions. Although many community-based prevention programmes have been reported in this last decade, few of these describe an evaluation component. In this study, a school-based prevention programme was developed by a peer group and presented by them to high-risk adolescents. The study aimed to test the efficacy of this intervention compared to the delivery of a prevention presentation to a similar group by a health care professional and compared to a control group. Measures of health locus of control, self-efficacy and behavioural intent were supplemented by open-ended items related to risk-taking behaviour change. At post-test and at 4-month follow-up, there was little evidence in the quantitative measures to support the effectiveness of the intervention for reducing injury risk factors. More encouraging findings were seen in the qualitative data. Explanations for why the intervention did not result in the expected outcomes are offered.

  16. Arctic bioremediation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cleanup of oil and diesel spills on gravel pads in the Arctic has typically been accomplished by utilizing a water flushing technique to remove the gross contamination or excavating the spill area and placing the material into a lined pit, or a combination of both. This paper discusses the potential to utilize bioremediation as an effective method to clean up hydrocarbon spills in the northern latitudes. Discussed are the results of a laboratory bioremediation study which simulated microbial degradation of hydrocarbon under arctic conditions

  17. Biogenic, anthropogenic and sea salt sulfate size-segregated aerosols in the Arctic summer

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghahremaninezhad, Roghayeh; Norman, Ann-Lise; Abbatt, Jonathan P. D.; Levasseur, Maurice; Thomas, Jennie L.

    2016-04-01

    Size-segregated aerosol sulfate concentrations were measured on board the Canadian Coast Guard Ship (CCGS) Amundsen in the Arctic during July 2014. The objective of this study was to utilize the isotopic composition of sulfate to address the contribution of anthropogenic and biogenic sources of aerosols to the growth of the different aerosol size fractions in the Arctic atmosphere. Non-sea-salt sulfate is divided into biogenic and anthropogenic sulfate using stable isotope apportionment techniques. A considerable amount of the average sulfate concentration in the fine aerosols with a diameter 63 %), which is higher than in previous Arctic studies measuring above the ocean during fall ( 30 %) (Norman et al., 1999). The anthropogenic sulfate concentration was less than that of biogenic sulfate, with potential sources being long-range transport and, more locally, the Amundsen's emissions. Despite attempts to minimize the influence of ship stack emissions, evidence from larger-sized particles demonstrates a contribution from local pollution. A comparison of δ34S values for SO2 and fine aerosols was used to show that gas-to-particle conversion likely occurred during most sampling periods. δ34S values for SO2 and fine aerosols were similar, suggesting the same source for SO2 and aerosol sulfate, except for two samples with a relatively high anthropogenic fraction in particles Arctic Ocean during the productive summer months.

  18. High level radioactive waste siting processes: critical lessons from Canadian siting successes

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    While not without controversy, Canada's Crown Corporations, municipalities, agencies and private companies have had success in siting and achieving approval for operating: toxic and hazardous waste facilities; dry radioactive materials storage facilities; the Federal low-level radioactive waste disposal facility; and, several large and small domestic landfills. The cumulative experience gained from these siting and approval processes provides valuable advice in support of the siting and approval of high-level radioactive disposal facilities. Among the critical elements for the success of these siting efforts are: 1) the tinting, scope and character of the siting process reflects the cultural and social values of affected people; 2) the siting and approval processes has integrity -- characterized as rational processes in pursuit of the public interest; 3) sufficient time and resources are dedicated to listening carefully and examining issues seen to be important by the public; 4) all information is shared -- even if the information is potentially detrimental to the approval of the facility; 5) proponent has a prioritized multiple focus on 'health, safety and environment issues', on 'insuring that the environmental assessment process is socially acceptable' as well as on the 'approval considerations'; 6) the implementing agency seeks cooperation and win-win solutions with the local community; 7) the community has the option of opting-out of the process and the do-nothing and/or the not here option continues to be considered by the proponent; 8) local emergency response people are well-trained and accepting of the facility; 9) the community has a strong role in determining the terms, conditions and compensation related to the future facility. (author)

  19. PCW/PHEOS-WCA: quasi-geostationary Arctic measurements for weather, climate, and air quality from highly eccentric orbits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lachance, Richard L.; McConnell, John C.; McElroy, C. Tom; O'Neill, Norm; Nassar, Ray; Buijs, Henry; Rahnama, Peyman; Walker, Kaley; Martin, Randall; Sioris, Chris; Garand, Louis; Trichtchenko, Alexander; Bergeron, Martin

    2012-09-01

    The PCW (Polar Communications and Weather) mission is a dual satellite mission with each satellite in a highly eccentric orbit with apogee ~42,000 km and a period (to be decided) in the 12-24 hour range to deliver continuous communications and meteorological data over the Arctic and environs. Such as satellite duo can give 24×7 coverage over the Arctic. The operational meteorological instrument is a 21-channel spectral imager similar to the Advanced Baseline Imager (ABI). The PHEOS-WCA (weather, climate and air quality) mission is intended as an atmospheric science complement to the operational PCW mission. The target PHEOS-WCA instrument package considered optimal to meet the full suite of science team objectives consists of FTS and UVS imaging sounders with viewing range of ~4.5° or a Field of Regard (FoR) ~ 3400×3400 km2 from near apogee. The goal for the spatial resolution at apogee of each imaging sounder is 10×10 km2 or better and the goal for the image repeat time is targeted at ~2 hours or better. The FTS has 4 bands that span the MIR and NIR with a spectral resolution of 0.25 cm-1. They should provide vertical tropospheric profiles of temperature and water vapour in addition to partial columns of many other gases of interest for air quality. The two NIR bands target columns of CO2, CH4 and aerosol optical depth (OD). The UVS is an imaging spectrometer that covers the spectral range of 280-650 nm with 0.9 nm resolution and targets the tropospheric column densities of O3 and NO2 and several other Air Quality (AQ) gases as well the Aerosol Index (AI).

  20. Unilateral pollution control in the Northwest Passage : the Canadian NORDREG regulations in the context of UNCLOS, Article 234

    OpenAIRE

    Raspotnik, Andreas

    2011-01-01

    To safeguard the Canadian Arctic marine environment, Canada established an Arctic marine traffic system, known as the Northern Canada Vessel Traffic Services Zone Regulations (NORDREG). These mandatory regulations require most nongovernmental vessels to report information prior to entering, while operating within and upon exiting Canada’s northern/Arctic waters. Canada asserts that the traffic system is consistent with international law concerning ice-covered areas, in particular with the “Ar...

  1. Modal structure of chemical mass size distribution in the high Arctic aerosol

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hillamo, Risto; Kerminen, Veli-Matti; Aurela, Minna; MäKelä, Timo; Maenhaut, Willy; Leek, Caroline

    2001-11-01

    Chemical mass size distributions of aerosol particles were measured in the remote marine boundary layer over the central Arctic Ocean as part of the Atmospheric Research Program on the Arctic Ocean Expedition 1996 (AOE-96). An inertial impaction method was used to classify aerosol particles into different size classes for subsequent chemical analysis. The particle chemical composition was determined by ion chromatography and by the particle-induced X-ray emission technique. Continuous particle size spectra were extracted from the raw data using a data inversion method. Clear and varying modal structures for aerosols consisting of primary sea-salt particles or of secondary particles related to dimethyl sulfide emissions were found. Concentration levels of all modes decreased rapidly when the distance from open sea increased. In the submicrometer size range the major ions found by ion chromatography were sulfate, methane sulfonate, and ammonium. They had most of the time a clear Aitken mode and one or two accumulation modes, with aerodynamic mass median diameters around 0.1 μm, 0.3 μm, and between 0.5-1.0 μm, respectively. The overall submicron size distributions of these three ions were quite similar, suggesting that they were internally mixed over most of this size range. The corresponding modal structure was consistent with the mass size distributions derived from the particle number size distributions measured with a differential mobility particle sizer. The Aitken to accumulation mode mass ratio for nss-sulfate and MSA was substantially higher during clear skies than during cloudy periods. Primary sea-salt particles formed a mode with an aerodynamic mass median diameter around 2 μm. In general, the resulting continuous mass size distributions displayed a clear modal structure consistent with our understanding of the two known major source mechanisms. One is the sea-salt aerosol emerging from seawater by bubble bursting. The other is related to

  2. Crustal types of the Circumpolar Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kashubin, Sergey; Pavlenkova, Ninel; Petrov, Oleg; Milshtein, Evgenia; Shokalsky, Sergey; Erinchek, Yuri

    2016-04-01

    Deep seismic studies revealed unusual crustal structure in the Arctic Ocean. The thin (about 10 km) oceanic crust with seismic velocities Vp= 6.8-7.2 km/s is observed only in the narrow mid-oceanic ridge zone (the Gakkel ridge). The thick (25-35 km) continental crust covers the whole continental margins and the central part of the ocean. The continental type of the magnetic field with large local anomalies of different signs and irregular shapes is also observed in this area. However, the crust of the central Arctic (the Lomonosov, Mendeleev and Alpha ridges) differ from the crust of the Eurasia by the lower thickness of the upper granite-gneiss layer (velocities Vp=6.0-6.6 km/s): it is only 5-7 km in comparison with 15-20 km in the continent. The origin of such crust may be explained in two ways. Most frequently it is accounted for by the destruction and transformation of the continental crust by the basification that implies the enrichment of the crust by the rocks of basic composition from the mantle and the metamorphization of the continental rocks at the higher temperature and pressure. But in the central part of the Arctic Ocean the crust looks as an original one. The regular form of the large ridges and the continental type magnetic field were not destroyed by the basification processes which are usually irregular and most intensive in some local zones. The basification origin may be proposed for the Canadian and the South-Barents deep sedimentary basins with "suboceanic" crust (10-15 km of sediments and 10-15 km of the lower crust with Vp= 6.8-7.2 km/s). The other basins which stretch along fault zones outlined the central deep water part of the Arctic Ocean have the ''subcontinental' crust: the thickness of the granite-gneiss layer decreases in these basins and sometimes the high velocity intrusions are observed in the lower parts. The different crustal types are observed in the North Atlantic where the oceanic crust with linear magnetic anomalies is

  3. Patterns of DNA Barcode Variation in Canadian Marine Molluscs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Layton, Kara K.S.; Martel, André L.; Hebert, Paul DN.

    2014-01-01

    Background Molluscs are the most diverse marine phylum and this high diversity has resulted in considerable taxonomic problems. Because the number of species in Canadian oceans remains uncertain, there is a need to incorporate molecular methods into species identifications. A 648 base pair segment of the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene has proven useful for the identification and discovery of species in many animal lineages. While the utility of DNA barcoding in molluscs has been demonstrated in other studies, this is the first effort to construct a DNA barcode registry for marine molluscs across such a large geographic area. Methodology/Principal Findings This study examines patterns of DNA barcode variation in 227 species of Canadian marine molluscs. Intraspecific sequence divergences ranged from 0–26.4% and a barcode gap existed for most taxa. Eleven cases of relatively deep (>2%) intraspecific divergence were detected, suggesting the possible presence of overlooked species. Structural variation was detected in COI with indels found in 37 species, mostly bivalves. Some indels were present in divergent lineages, primarily in the region of the first external loop, suggesting certain areas are hotspots for change. Lastly, mean GC content varied substantially among orders (24.5%–46.5%), and showed a significant positive correlation with nearest neighbour distances. Conclusions/Significance DNA barcoding is an effective tool for the identification of Canadian marine molluscs and for revealing possible cases of overlooked species. Some species with deep intraspecific divergence showed a biogeographic partition between lineages on the Atlantic, Arctic and Pacific coasts, suggesting the role of Pleistocene glaciations in the subdivision of their populations. Indels were prevalent in the barcode region of the COI gene in bivalves and gastropods. This study highlights the efficacy of DNA barcoding for providing insights into sequence variation across a broad

  4. Phosphatase activity and organic phosphorus turnover on a high Arctic glacier

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Stibal

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available Arctic glacier surfaces harbor abundant microbial communities consisting mainly of heterotrophic and photoautotrophic bacteria. The microbes must cope with very low concentrations of nutrients and with the fact that both the dissolved and debris-bound nutrient pools are dominated by organic phases. Here we provide evidence that phosphorus (P is deficient and limiting in the supraglacial environment on a Svalbard glacier, we show how the microbial community responds to the P stress and we quantify the contribution of the microbes to the cycling of the dominant organic P in the supraglacial environment. Incubation of cryoconite debris revealed significant phosphatase activity in the samples (19–67 nmol MUP g−1 h−1, which was controlled by the concentration of inorganic P during incubations and had its optimum at around 30°C. The phosphatase activity rates measured at near-in situ temperature and substrate concentration imply that the available dissolved organic P can be turned over by microbes within ~3–11 h on the glacier surface. By contrast, the amount of potentially bioavailable debris-bound organic P is sufficient for a whole ablation season. However, it is apparent that some of this potentially bioavailable debris-bound P is not accessible to the microbes.

  5. Phosphatase activity and organic phosphorus turnover on a high Arctic glacier

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Stibal

    2009-05-01

    Full Text Available Arctic glacier surfaces harbour abundant microbial communities consisting mainly of heterotrophic and photoautotrophic bacteria. The microbes must cope with low concentrations of nutrients and with the fact that both the dissolved and debris-bound nutrient pools are dominated by organic phases. Here we provide evidence that phosphorus (P is deficient in the supraglacial environment on a Svalbard glacier, we quantify the enzymatic activity of phosphatases in the system and we estimate the contribution of the microbes to the cycling of the dominant organic P in the supraglacial environment. Incubation of cryoconite debris revealed significant phosphatase activity in the samples (19–67 nmol MUP g−1 h−1. It was inhibited by inorganic P during incubations and had its optimum at around 30°C. The phosphatase activity measured at near-in situ temperature and substrate concentration suggests that the available dissolved organic P can be turned over by microbes within ~3–11 h on the glacier surface. By contrast, the amount of potentially bioavailable debris-bound organic P is sufficient for a whole ablation season. However, it is apparent that some of this potentially bioavailable debris-bound P is not accessible to the microbes.

  6. Late snowmelt delays plant development and results in lower reproductive success in the High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cooper, Elisabeth J; Dullinger, Stefan; Semenchuk, Philipp

    2011-01-01

    In tundra areas where the growing season is short, any delay in the start of summer may have a considerable effect on plant development, growth and reproductive success. Climate models suggest long-term changes in winter precipitation in the Arctic, which may lead to deeper snow cover and a resultant delay in date of snow melt. In this paper, we investigated the role of snow depth and melt out date on the phenological development and reproductive success of vascular plants in Adventdalen, Svalbard (78° 10'N, 16° 06'E). Effects of natural variations in snow accumulation were demonstrated using two vegetation types (snow depth: meadow 21 cm, heath 32 cm), and fences were used to experimentally increase snow depth by over 1m. Phenological delay was greatest directly after snowmelt in the earlier phenological phases, and had the largest effect on the early development of those species which normally green-up early (i.e. Dryas, Papaver, Salix, Saxifraga). Compressed growing seasons and length of the reproductive period led to a reduced reproductive success in some of the study species. There were fewer flowers, fewer plots with dispersing seeds, and lower germination rates. This can have consequences for plant establishment and community composition in the long-term.

  7. Control of primary production in the Arctic by nutrients and light: insights from a high resolution ocean general circulation model

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. E. Popova

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available Until recently, the Arctic Basin was generally considered to be a low productivity area and was afforded little attention in global- or even basin-scale ecosystem modelling studies. Due to anthropogenic climate change however, the sea ice cover of the Arctic Ocean is undergoing an unexpectedly fast retreat, exposing increasingly large areas of the basin to sunlight. As indicated by existing Arctic phenomena such as ice-edge blooms, this decline in sea-ice is liable to encourage pronounced growth of phytoplankton in summer and poses pressing questions concerning the future of Arctic ecosystems. It thus provides a strong impetus to modelling of this region.

    The Arctic Ocean is an area where plankton productivity is heavily influenced by physical factors. As these factors are strongly responding to climate change, we analyse here the results from simulations of the 1/4° resolution global ocean NEMO (Nucleus for European Modelling of the Ocean model coupled with the MEDUSA (Model for Ecosystem Dynamics, carbon Utilisation, Sequestration and Acidification biogeochemical model, with a particular focus on the Arctic Basin. Simulated productivity is consistent with the limited observations for the Arctic, with significant production occurring both under the sea-ice and at the thermocline, locations that are difficult to sample in the field.

    Results also indicate that a substantial fraction of the variability in Arctic primary production can be explained by two key physical factors: (i the maximum penetration of winter mixing, which determines the amount of nutrients available for summer primary production, and (ii short-wave radiation at the ocean surface, which controls the magnitude of phytoplankton blooms. A strong empirical correlation was found in the model output between primary production these two factors, highlighting the importance of physical processes in the Arctic Ocean.

  8. Record-low primary productivity and high plant damage in the Nordic Arctic Region in 2012 caused by multiple weather events and pest outbreaks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    The release of cold temperature constraints on photosynthesis has led to increased productivity (greening) in significant parts (32–39%) of the Arctic, but much of the Arctic shows stable (57–64%) or reduced productivity (browning, <4%). Summer drought and wildfires are the best-documented drivers causing browning of continental areas, but factors dampening the greening effect of more maritime regions have remained elusive. Here we show how multiple anomalous weather events severely affected the terrestrial productivity during one water year (October 2011–September 2012) in a maritime region north of the Arctic Circle, the Nordic Arctic Region, and contributed to the lowest mean vegetation greenness (normalized difference vegetation index) recorded this century. Procedures for field data sampling were designed during or shortly after the events in order to assess both the variability in effects and the maximum effects of the stressors. Outbreaks of insect and fungal pests also contributed to low greenness. Vegetation greenness in 2012 was 6.8% lower than the 2000–11 average and 58% lower in the worst affected areas that were under multiple stressors. These results indicate the importance of events (some being mostly neglected in climate change effect studies and monitoring) for primary productivity in a high-latitude maritime region, and highlight the importance of monitoring plant damage in the field and including frequencies of stress events in models of carbon economy and ecosystem change in the Arctic. Fourteen weather events and anomalies and 32 hypothesized impacts on plant productivity are summarized as an aid for directing future research. (letter)

  9. Plant co-existence patterns and High-Arctic vegetation composition in three common plant communities in north-east Greenland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oriol Grau

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Arctic regions are expected to experience substantial changes in climate in the coming decades. In order to predict potential changes of Arctic vegetation, it is important to understand the distinct role of life forms of plants and of individual species in relation to plant co-existence patterns. Our aim is to investigate if three common Arctic plant patch types dominated by contrasting life forms (by the dwarf shrubs Salix arctica or Dryas octopetala×intermedia or by mosses are related (a to the co-existence of vascular plants and species richness at patch scale and (b to the floristic composition in three distinct plant communities (Salix snowbed, Dryas heath and fell-field associated with contrasting abiotic regimes. The study was conducted at Zackenberg, in north-east Greenland. Dryas patches showed a clear negative effect on small-scale plant richness and co-existence in the fell-field. Salix and moss patches showed a similar pattern in all the plant communities, although the number of individuals growing in Salix patches was lower than in moss patches. Salix and mosses in the fell-fields hosted a high number of species in spite of the much less vegetated aspect of this harsh, upper zone. The floristic composition varied between plant communities, but it did not change substantially between patch types within each community. This study provides novel background knowledge of plant co-existence patterns at patch scale and of the structure of contrasting Arctic plant communities, which will help to better assess the potential effects of varying abiotic stress regimes on Arctic vegetation.

  10. The effect of a permafrost disturbance on growing-season carbon-dioxide fluxes in a high Arctic tundra ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassidy, Alison E.; Christen, Andreas; Henry, Gregory H. R.

    2016-04-01

    Soil carbon stored in high-latitude permafrost landscapes is threatened by warming and could contribute significant amounts of carbon to the atmosphere and hydrosphere as permafrost thaws. Thermokarst and permafrost disturbances, especially active layer detachments and retrogressive thaw slumps, are present across the Fosheim Peninsula, Ellesmere Island, Canada. To determine the effects of retrogressive thaw slumps on net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2 in high Arctic tundra, we used two eddy covariance (EC) tower systems to simultaneously and continuously measure CO2 fluxes from a disturbed site and the surrounding undisturbed tundra. During the 32-day measurement period in the 2014 growing season, the undisturbed tundra was a small net sink (NEE = -0.1 g C m-2 d-1); however, the disturbed terrain of the retrogressive thaw slump was a net source (NEE = +0.4 g C m-2 d-1). Over the measurement period, the undisturbed tundra sequestered 3.8 g C m-2, while the disturbed tundra released 12.5 g C m-2. Before full leaf-out in early July, the undisturbed tundra was a small source of CO2 but shifted to a sink for the remainder of the sampling season (July), whereas the disturbed tundra remained a source of CO2 throughout the season. A static chamber system was also used to measure daytime fluxes in the footprints of the two towers, in both disturbed and undisturbed tundra, and fluxes were partitioned into ecosystem respiration (Re) and gross primary production (GPP). Average GPP and Re found in disturbed tundra were smaller (+0.40 µmol m-2 s-1 and +0.55 µmol m-2 s-1, respectively) than those found in undisturbed tundra (+1.19 µmol m-2 s-1 and +1.04 µmol m-2 s-1, respectively). Our measurements indicated clearly that the permafrost disturbance changed the high Arctic tundra system from a sink to a source for CO2 during the majority of the growing season (late June and July).

  11. 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

  12. Benthic cyanobacterial mats in the high arctic: multi-layer structure and fluorescence responses to osmotic stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lionard, Marie; Péquin, Bérangère; Lovejoy, Connie; Vincent, Warwick F

    2012-01-01

    Cyanobacterial mats are often a major biological component of extreme aquatic ecosystems, and in polar lakes and streams they may account for the dominant fraction of total ecosystem biomass and productivity. In this study we examined the vertical structure and physiology of Arctic microbial mats relative to the question of how these communities may respond to ongoing environmental change. The mats were sampled from Ward Hunt Lake (83°5.297'N, 74°9.985'W) at the northern coast of Arctic Canada, and were composed of three visibly distinct layers. Microsensor profiling showed that there were strong gradients in oxygen within each layer, with an overall decrease from 100% saturation at the mat surface to 0%, at the bottom, accompanied by an increase of 0.6 pH units down the profile. Gene clone libraries (16S rRNA) revealed the presence of Oscillatorian sequences throughout the mat, while Nostoc related species dominated the two upper layers, and Nostocales and Synechococcales sequences were common in the bottom layer. High performance liquid chromatography analyses showed a parallel gradient in pigments, from high concentrations of UV-screening scytonemin in the upper layer to increasing zeaxanthin and myxoxanthin in the bottom layer, and an overall shift from photoprotective to photosynthetic carotenoids down the profile. Climate change is likely to be accompanied by lake level fluctuations and evaporative concentration of salts, and thus increased osmotic stress of the littoral mat communities. To assess the cellular capacity to tolerate increasing osmolarity on physiology and cell membrane integrity, mat sections were exposed to a gradient of increasing salinities, and PAM measurements of in vivo chlorophyll fluorescence were made to assess changes in maximum quantum yield. The results showed that the mats were tolerant of up to a 46-fold increase in salinity. These features imply that cyanobacterial mats are resilient to ongoing climate change, and that in the

  13. Arctic forcing of decadal variability in the tropical Pacific Ocean in a high-resolution global coupled GCM

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karnauskas, Kristopher B.

    2014-06-01

    The hypothesis that northern high-latitude atmospheric variability influences decadal variability in the tropical Pacific Ocean by modulating the wind jet blowing over the Gulf of Tehuantepec (GT) is examined using the high-resolution configuration of the MIROC 3.2 global coupled model. The model is shown to have acceptable skill in replicating the spatial pattern, strength, seasonality, and time scale of observed GT wind events. The decadal variability of the simulated GT winds in a 100-year control integration is driven by the Arctic Oscillation (AO). The regional impacts of the GT winds include strong sea surface cooling, increased salinity, and the generation of westward-propagating anticyclonic eddies, also consistent with observations. However, significant nonlocal effects also emerge in concert with the low-frequency variability of the GT winds, including anomalously low upper ocean heat content (OHC) in the central tropical Pacific Ocean. It is suggested that the mesoscale eddies generated by the wind stress curl signature of the GT winds, which propagate several thousand kilometers toward the central Pacific, contribute to this anomaly by strengthening the meridional overturning associated with the northern subtropical cell. A parallel mechanism for the decadal OHC variability is considered by examining the Ekman and Sverdrup transports inferred from the atmospheric circulation anomalies in the northern midlatitude Pacific directly associated with the AO.

  14. Arctic Shipping

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Carsten Ørts; Grønsedt, Peter; Lindstrøm Graversen, Christian;

    maritime industries (including shipping, offshore energy, ports, and maritime service and equipment suppliers) as well as addresses topics that cut across maritime industries (regulation and competitiveness). The topics and narrower research questions addressed in the initiative were developed in close......, the latter aiming at developing key concepts and building up a basic industry knowledge base for further development of CBS Maritime research and teaching. This report attempts to map the opportunities and challenges for the maritime industry in an increasingly accessible Arctic Ocean...

  15. Ecotoxicological investigation of the effect of accumulation of PAH and possible impact of dispersant in resting high arctic copepod Calanus hyperboreus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nørregaard, Rasmus Dyrmose; Gustavson, Kim; Møller, Eva Friis; Strand, Jakob; Tairova, Zhanna; Mosbech, Anders

    2015-10-01

    Due to high lipid content and a slow metabolism, there is a higher risk of bioaccumulation of oil compounds in Arctic than in temperate copepods. There is also a concern that the bioavailability of oil compounds is higher when oil is dispersed with dispersants. The purpose of this project was to increase the knowledge on how the use of dispersants on an oil spill may affect the passive uptake of PAHs in resting high arctic copepods using Calanus hyperboreus as a model organism. To evaluate this, resting high arctic C. hyperboreus were caught in Disko Bay at>250 meters depth, November 2013, and subsequent experimental work was initiated immediately after, at nearby Arctic Station at Disko Island Western Greenland. C. hyperboreus females were incubated in phenanthrene (111, 50 and 10 nM), pyrene (57, 28 and 6 nM) and benzo(a) pyrene (10, 5 and 1 nM) for three days in treatments with and without oil (corn oil) and dispersant (AGMA DR372). After exposure, the highest measured concentrations of respectively phenanthrene, pyrene and benzo(a) pyrene in the copepods were 129, 30 and 6 nmol PAH g female(-1). Results showed that with addition of oil and dispersant to the water, the accumulation of PAH was significantly reduced, due to the deposition of the PAHs in the oil phase, decreasing the available PAHs for copepod uptake. While PAH metabolites and a depuration of the PAHs were observed, the copepods still contained PAHs after 77 days of incubation in clean seawater. Differences of treatments with and without oil and dispersant on the egg production were not statistically conclusive, although it is the most likely an effect of the highly variable day-to-day egg production between individual copepods. Equally, although there was an indication that the addition of dispersant and oil increased the mortality rate, there was no statistical difference. PMID:26253790

  16. Quantifying the Mass Balance of Ice Caps on Severnaya Zemlya, Russian High Arctic. I: Climate and Mass Balance of the Vavilov Ice Cap

    OpenAIRE

    Bassford, R. P.; Siegert, M.J.; Dowdeswell, J.A.; Oerlemans, J.; A. F. Glazovsky; Macheret, Y.Y.

    2006-01-01

    Due to their remote location within the Russian High Arctic, little is known about the mass balance of ice caps on Severnaya Zemlya now and in the past. Such information is critical, however, to building a global picture of the cryospheric response to climate change. This paper provides a numerical analysis of the climate and mass balance of the Vavilov Ice Cap on October Revolution Island. Mass balance model results are compared with available glaciological and climatological data. A referen...

  17. Long Term Thawing Experiment on High Arctic Polygonal Tundra: Spring Thaw Gas Flux Dynamics and Soil Properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stackhouse, B. T.; Mykytczuk, N. C.; Lamarche-Gagnon, G.; Layton, A. C.; Pfiffner, S. M.; Vishnivetskaya, T. A.; Saad, N.; Whyte, L.; Onstott, T. C.

    2012-12-01

    Global climate models predict that over the coming century increasing Arctic temperature will lead to increases in the release of greenhouse gases, CO2 and CH4, from thawing the permafrost, which is a major repository of soil carbon. The magnitude and rate of this positive feedback is highly uncertain due to lack of detailed field observations and long-term experimental simulations. To this end long-term core thawing experiments are being carried out to examine gas flux from the Arctic active layer and permafrost under various environmental conditions. Eighteen 1-m long cores were collected before seasonal thaw from a sparsely vegetated, ice-wedge polygon at the McGill Arctic Research Station (MARS) at Axel Heiberg Island, Nunavut, Canada (N79°24, W90°45). The cores contained ~5% organic carbon in the top 15 cm and decreased to ~1% for the remainder of the core, with a solid phase organic carbon δ13C of -26.5‰. The cores were progressively thawed from the top down to the permafrost table over six weeks and held at 4° C under the following conditions: maintenance of an in situ permafrost table depth at 70 cm below surface versus fully thawed permafrost layer, in situ water saturation conditions versus fully water saturated conditions using artificial rain fall, and surface light versus no surface light. Core headspaces were monitored on a weekly basis for concentration of CO2, CH4, and δ13C-CO2. Over the thawing period, the CH4 flux out of the soil decreased from the initial rate of 2.2 μmol CH4/m2/day to 0.12 μmol CH4/m2/day, indicating that CH4 trapped in the soil outgassed as temperatures rose above freezing but the flux rapidly diminished. Introduction of 2 PPMV CH4 into the headspace of under-saturated core treatments revealed net depletion of CH4 was taking place at -3.6 μmol CH4/m2/day, an observation consistent with field measurements of methanotrophy at Axel Heiberg Island during spring and summer and with laboratory microcosm experiments

  18. Snow cover and extreme winter warming events control flower abundance of some, but not all species in high arctic Svalbard.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semenchuk, Philipp R; Elberling, Bo; Cooper, Elisabeth J

    2013-08-01

    The High Arctic winter is expected to be altered through ongoing and future climate change. Winter precipitation and snow depth are projected to increase and melt out dates change accordingly. Also, snow cover and depth will play an important role in protecting plant canopy from increasingly more frequent extreme winter warming events. Flower production of many Arctic plants is dependent on melt out timing, since season length determines resource availability for flower preformation. We erected snow fences to increase snow depth and shorten growing season, and counted flowers of six species over 5 years, during which we experienced two extreme winter warming events. Most species were resistant to snow cover increase, but two species reduced flower abundance due to shortened growing seasons. Cassiope tetragona responded strongly with fewer flowers in deep snow regimes during years without extreme events, while Stellaria crassipes responded partly. Snow pack thickness determined whether winter warming events had an effect on flower abundance of some species. Warming events clearly reduced flower abundance in shallow but not in deep snow regimes of Cassiope tetragona, but only marginally for Dryas octopetala. However, the affected species were resilient and individuals did not experience any long term effects. In the case of short or cold summers, a subset of species suffered reduced reproductive success, which may affect future plant composition through possible cascading competition effects. Extreme winter warming events were shown to expose the canopy to cold winter air. The following summer most of the overwintering flower buds could not produce flowers. Thus reproductive success is reduced if this occurs in subsequent years. We conclude that snow depth influences flower abundance by altering season length and by protecting or exposing flower buds to cold winter air, but most species studied are resistant to changes. Winter warming events, often occurring

  19. Snow cover and extreme winter warming events control flower abundance of some, but not all species in high arctic Svalbard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semenchuk, Philipp R; Elberling, Bo; Cooper, Elisabeth J

    2013-01-01

    Abstract The High Arctic winter is expected to be altered through ongoing and future climate change. Winter precipitation and snow depth are projected to increase and melt out dates change accordingly. Also, snow cover and depth will play an important role in protecting plant canopy from increasingly more frequent extreme winter warming events. Flower production of many Arctic plants is dependent on melt out timing, since season length determines resource availability for flower preformation. We erected snow fences to increase snow depth and shorten growing season, and counted flowers of six species over 5 years, during which we experienced two extreme winter warming events. Most species were resistant to snow cover increase, but two species reduced flower abundance due to shortened growing seasons. Cassiope tetragona responded strongly with fewer flowers in deep snow regimes during years without extreme events, while Stellaria crassipes responded partly. Snow pack thickness determined whether winter warming events had an effect on flower abundance of some species. Warming events clearly reduced flower abundance in shallow but not in deep snow regimes of Cassiope tetragona, but only marginally for Dryas octopetala. However, the affected species were resilient and individuals did not experience any long term effects. In the case of short or cold summers, a subset of species suffered reduced reproductive success, which may affect future plant composition through possible cascading competition effects. Extreme winter warming even