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Sample records for high arctic canada

  1. The High Arctic Large Igneous Province Mantle Plume caused uplift of Arctic Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galloway, Jennifer; Ernst, Richard; Hadlari, Thomas

    2016-04-01

    The Sverdrup Basin is an east-west-trending extensional sedimentary basin underlying the northern Canadian Arctic Archipelago. The tectonic history of the basin began with Carboniferous-Early Permian rifting followed by thermal subsidence with minor tectonism. Tectonic activity rejuvenated in the Hauterivian-Aptian by renewed rifting and extension. Strata were deformed by diapiric structures that developed during episodic flow of Carboniferous evaporites during the Mesozoic and the basin contains igneous components associated with the High Arctic Large Igneous Province (HALIP). HALIP was a widespread event emplaced in multiple pulses spanning ca. 180 to 80 Ma, with igneous rocks on Svalbard, Franz Josef Island, New Siberian Islands, and also in the Sverdrup Basin on Ellef Ringnes, Axel Heiberg, and Ellesmere islands. Broadly contemporaneous igneous activity across this broad Arctic region along with a reconstructed giant radiating dyke swarm suggests that HALIP is a manifestation of large mantle plume activity probably centred near the Alpha Ridge. Significant surface uplift associated with the rise of a mantle plume is predicted to start ~10-20 my prior to the generation of flood basalt magmatism and to vary in shape and size subsequently throughout the LIP event (1,2,3) Initial uplift is due to dynamical support associated with the top of the ascending plume reaching a depth of about 1000 km, and with continued ascent the uplift topography broadens. Additional effects (erosion of the ductile lithosphere and thermal expansion caused by longer-term heating of the mechanical lithosphere) also affect the shape of the uplift. Topographic uplift can be between 1 to 4 km depending on various factors and may be followed by subsidence as the plume head decays or become permanent due to magmatic underplating. In the High Arctic, field and geochronological data from HALIP relevant to the timing of uplift, deformation, and volcanism are few. Here we present new evidence

  2. 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, N.; Roos-Barraclough, F.; Goodsite, Michael Evan

    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....... 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...

  3. 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 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.

  4. 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

  5. Early Cretaceous vegetation and climate change at high latitude: palynological evidence from Isachsen Formation, Arctic Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galloway, Jennifer M.; Tullius, Dylan N.; Evenchick, Carol A.; Swindles, Graeme T.; Hadlari, Thomas; Embry, Ashton

    2015-04-01

    Understanding the behaviour of global climate during relatively warm periods in Earth's history, such as the Cretaceous Period, advances our overall understanding of the climate system and provides insight on drivers of climate change over geologic time. While it has been suggested that the Valanginian Age represents the first episode of Cretaceous greenhouse climate conditions with relatively equable warm temperatures, mounting evidence suggests that this time was relatively cool. A paucity of paleoclimate data currently exists for polar regions compared to mid- and low-latitudes and this is particularly true for the Canadian Arctic. There is also a lack of information about the terrestrial realm as most paleoclimate studies have been based on marine material. Here we present quantitative pollen and spore data obtained from the marginal marine and deltaic-fluvial Isachsen Formation of the Sverdrup Basin, Canadian Arctic, to better understand the long-term vegetation and climate history of polar regions during the warm but variable Early Cretaceous (Valanginian to Early Aptian). Detrended correspondence analysis of main pollen and spore taxa is used to derive three ecological groupings influenced by moisture and disturbance based on the botanical affinities of palynomorphs: 1) a mixed coniferous assemblage containing both lowland and upland components; 2) a conifer-filicopsid community that likely grew in dynamic lowland habitats; and, 3) a mature dry lowland community composed of Cheirolepidaceans. Stratigraphic changes in the relative abundance of pollen and spore taxa reflect climate variability in this polar region during the ~20 Mya history of the Isachsen Formation. The late Valanginian was relatively cool and moist and promoted lowland conifer-filicopsid communities. Warming in the Hauterivian resulted in the expansion coniferous communities in well-drained or arid hinterlands. A return to relatively cool and moist conditions in the Barremian resulted in the

  6. Canada : oil, gas, and the new Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Huebert, R. [Calgary Univ., AB (Canada). Dept. of Political Science; Calgary Univ., AB (Canada). Centre for Military and Strategic Studies

    2010-07-01

    This presentation provided a broad overview of the geopolitical issues affecting the massive transformation of the Arctic resulting from resource development, globalization, and climate change. Two Arctics are emerging, notably one European and one North American. Oil and gas companies are investing heavily in the North, and there is continued debate over pipelines and projects, but the viability of projects can shift abruptly from technological and political change. Recent examples include the emergence of shale gas, the possibility of the United States becoming a gas exporter, and the Deepwater Horizon disaster. In terms of Maritime jurisdictions and boundaries, a comparison was presented regarding the Canadian and Russian claims to the continental shelf. International cooperation and a commitment to peaceful means can be seen in the Ilulissat Declaration, the acceptance of the United Nations Convention of the Law of the Sea as rules, the scientific cooperation of Canada, the United States, and Denmark, and the recent boundary agreement between Russia and Norway. The positions of the main players in the new geopolitics of the North were outlined, particularly with respect to Russia, the United States, Norway, Denmark, and Canada. Their recent policy statements and developing arctic force capabilities were summarized. Canada's more assertive Arctic policy was outlined in more detail along with the country's base locations and recent security actions in the North. The main issues facing nations with interests in the North will be maritime and aerospace; understanding the new players on the scene; and new technological developments. 10 figs., 5 refs.

  7. Microorganisms in small patterned ground features and adjacent vegetated soils along topographic and climatic gradients in the High Arctic, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    G. Gonzalez; F.J. Rivera-Figueroa; W. Gould; S.A. Cantrell; J.R. Pérez-Jiménez

    2014-01-01

    In this study, we determine differences in total biomass of soil microorganisms and community structure (using the most probable number of bacteria (MPN) and the number of fungal genera) in patterned ground features (PGF) and adjacent vegetated soils (AVS) in mesic sites from three High Arctic islands in order to characterize microbial dynamics as affected by...

  8. Submarine Landslides in Arctic Sedimentation: Canada Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mosher, David C.; Shimeld, John; Hutchinson, Deborah R.; Lebedova-Ivanova, N; Chapman, C.

    2016-01-01

    Canada Basin of the Arctic Ocean is the least studied ocean basin in the World. Marine seismic field programs were conducted over the past 6 years using Canadian and American icebreakers. These expeditions acquired more than 14,000 line-km of multibeam bathymetric and multi-channel seismic reflection data over abyssal plain, continental rise and slope regions of Canada Basin; areas where little or no seismic reflection data existed previously. Canada Basin is a turbidite-filled basin with flat-lying reflections correlateable over 100s of km. For the upper half of the sedimentary succession, evidence of sedimentary processes other than turbidity current deposition is rare. The Canadian Archipelago and Beaufort Sea margins host stacked mass transport deposits from which many of these turbidites appear to derive. The stratigraphic succession of the MacKenzie River fan is dominated by mass transport deposits; one such complex is in excess of 132,000 km2 in area and underlies much of the southern abyssal plain. The modern seafloor is also scarred with escarpments and mass failure deposits; evidence that submarine landsliding is an ongoing process. In its latest phase of development, Canada Basin is geomorphologically confined with stable oceanographic structure, resulting in restricted depositional/reworking processes. The sedimentary record, therefore, underscores the significance of mass-transport processes in providing sediments to oceanic abyssal plains as few other basins are able to do.

  9. Petroleum prospectivity of the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grantz, A.; Hart, P.E.

    2011-01-01

    Reconnaissance seismic reflection data indicate that Canada Basin is a remnant of the Amerasia Basin of the Arctic Ocean that lies south of the Alpha-Mendeleev Large Igneous Province, which was constructed on the northern part of the Amerasia Basin between about 127 and 89-75 Ma. Canada Basin is filled with Early Jurassic to Holocene detritus from the Mackenzie River system, which drains the northern third of interior North America, with sizable contributions from Alaska and Northwest Canada. Except for the absence of a salt- and shale-bearing mobile substrate Canada Basin is analogous to the Mississippi Delta and the western Gulf of Mexico. Canada Basin contains about 7 to >14 km of sediment beneath the Mackenzie Prodelta on the southeast, 6 to 7 km of sediment beneath the abyssal plain on the west, and roughly 5 or 6 million cubic km of sediment. About three fourths of the basin fill generates low amplitude seismic reflections, interpreted to represent hemiplegic deposits, and a fourth of the fill generates interbedded lenses to extensive layers of moderate to high amplitude reflections interpreted to represent unconfined turbidite and amalgamated channel deposits. Extrapolation from Arctic Alaska and Northwest Canada suggests that three fourths of the section in Canada Basin may contain intervals of hydrocarbon source rocks and the apparent age of the basin suggests that it contains three of the six stratigraphic intervals that together provided >90?? of the World's discovered reserves of oil and gas.. Worldwide heat flow averages suggest that about two thirds of Canada Basin lies in the oil or gas window. At least five types of structural or stratigraphic features of local to regional occurrence offer exploration targets in Canada Basin. These consist of 1) a belt of late Eocene to Miocene shale-cored detachment folds containing with at least two anticlines that are capped by beds with bright spots, 2) numerous moderate to high amplitude reflection packets

  10. Accumulation of carbon and nitrogen in vegetation and soils of deglaciated area in Ellesmere Island, high-Arctic Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osono, Takashi; Mori, Akira S.; Uchida, Masaki; Kanda, Hiroshi

    2016-09-01

    The amount of biomass, carbon (C), and nitrogen (N) in vegetation and soil were measured at two spatial scales in the high Arctic. At the scale of proglacial landscape, the amount of C and N in aboveground and belowground parts of vegetation, surface litter, and soil were significantly affected by the habitat (moraines vs hummocks), the relative age of the terrain after the deglaciation, and/or the vegetation. At another scale, we focused on mudboils as an agent of local disturbance in the vegetation and soil of the glacier foreland. The biomass and the amount of C and N in aboveground vegetation, surface litter, biological soil crust, and soil were generally increased with the stage of mudboils' inactivation. Biomass, C, and N in aboveground vegetation and surface litter were generally greater at moraine than at hummock, whereas those in biological soil crust and soil were greater at hummock. Principal component analysis identified two pathways, xeric and mesic ones on moraines and hummocks, respectively, of C and N accumulation both at the two spatial scales. These results suggested that the C and N accumulation was not linearly related to the time since deglaciation and that moisture condition, vegetation, and mudboil activity were locally important.

  11. 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

  12. Arctic foxes, lemmings, and canada goose nest survival at cape Churchill, Manitoba

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reiter, M.E.; Andersen, D.E.

    2011-01-01

    We examined factors influencing Canada Goose (Branta canadensis interior) annual nest success, including the relative abundance of collared lemmings (Dicrostonyx richardsoni), arctic fox (Alopex lagopus) den occupancy, nest density, and spring phenology using data collected during annual Canada Goose breeding area surveys at Cape Churchill, Manitoba. Nest density and arctic fox den occupancy strongly influenced Canada Goose nest success. High nest density resulted in higher nest success and high den occupancy reduced nest success. Nest success was not influenced by lemming abundance in the current or previous year as predicted by the "bird-lemming" hypothesis. Reducing arctic fox abundance through targeted management increased nest survival of Canada Geese; a result that further emphasizes the importance of arctic fox as nest predators in this system. The spatial distribution of nest predators, at least for dispersed-nesting geese, may be most important for nest survival, regardless of the abundance of small mammals in the local ecosystem. Further understanding of the factors influencing the magnitude and variance in arctic fox abundance in this region, and the spatial scale at which these factors are realized, is necessary to fully explain predator-prey-alternative prey dynamics in this system. ?? 2011 by the Wilson Ornithological Society.

  13. Distribution of crustal types in Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-11-01

    Seismic velocities determined from 70 sonobuoys widely distributed in Canada Basin were used to discriminate crustal types. Velocities of oceanic layer 3 (6.7-7.1 km/s), transitional (7.2-7.6 km/s) and continental crust (5.5-6.6 km/s) were used to distinguish crustal types. Potential field data supports the distribution of oceanic crust as a polygon with maximum dimensions of 340 km (east-west) by 590 km (north-south) and identification of the ocean-continent boundary (OCB). Paired magnetic anomalies are associated only with crust that has oceanic velocities. Furthermore, the interpreted top of oceanic crust on seismic reflection profiles is more irregular and sometimes shallower than adjacent transitional crust. The northern segment of the narrow Canada Basin Gravity Low (CBGL), often interpreted as a spreading center, bisects this zone of oceanic crust and coincides with the location of a prominent valley in seismic reflection profiles. Data coverage near the southern segment of CBGL is sparse. Velocities typical of transitional crust are determined east of it. Extension in this region, close to the inferred pole of rotation, may have been amagmatic. Offshore Alaska is a wide zone of thinned continental crust up to 300 km across. Published longer offset refraction experiments in the Basin confirm the depth to Moho and the lack of oceanic layer 3 velocities. Further north, toward Alpha Ridge and along Northwind Ridge, transitional crust is interpreted to be underplated or intruded by magmatism related to the emplacement of the High Arctic Large Igneous Province (HALIP). Although a rotational plate tectonic model is consistent with the extent of the conjugate magnetic anomalies that occupy only a portion of Canada Basin, it does not explain the asymmetrical configuration of the oceanic crust in the deep water portion of Canada Basin, and the unequal distribution of transitional and continental crust around the basin.

  14. Holocene climate change in Arctic Canada and Greenland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briner, Jason P.; McKay, Nicholas P.; Axford, Yarrow; Bennike, Ole; Bradley, Raymond S.; de Vernal, Anne; Fisher, David; Francus, Pierre; Fréchette, Bianca; Gajewski, Konrad; Jennings, Anne; Kaufman, Darrell S.; Miller, Gifford; Rouston, Cody; Wagner, Bernd

    2016-09-01

    This synthesis paper summarizes published proxy climate evidence showing the spatial and temporal pattern of climate change through the Holocene in Arctic Canada and Greenland. Our synthesis includes 47 records from a recently published database of highly resolved Holocene paleoclimate time series from the Arctic (Sundqvist et al., 2014). We analyze the temperature histories represented by the database and compare them with paleoclimate and environmental information from 54 additional published records, mostly from datasets that did not fit the selection criteria for the Arctic Holocene database. Combined, we review evidence from a variety of proxy archives including glaciers (ice cores and glacial geomorphology), lake sediments, peat sequences, and coastal and deep-marine sediments. The temperature-sensitive records indicate more consistent and earlier Holocene warmth in the north and east, and a more diffuse and later Holocene thermal maximum in the south and west. Principal components analysis reveals two dominant Holocene trends, one with early Holocene warmth followed by cooling in the middle Holocene, the other with a broader period of warmth in the middle Holocene followed by cooling in the late Holocene. The temperature decrease from the warmest to the coolest portions of the Holocene is 3.0 ± 1.0 °C on average (n = 11 sites). The Greenland Ice Sheet retracted to its minimum extent between 5 and 3 ka, consistent with many sites from around Greenland depicting a switch from warm to cool conditions around that time. The spatial pattern of temperature change through the Holocene was likely driven by the decrease in northern latitude summer insolation through the Holocene, the varied influence of waning ice sheets in the early Holocene, and the variable influx of Atlantic Water into the study region.

  15. Seasonal variability in physicochemical characteristics of small water bodies across a High Arctic wetland, Polar Bear Pass, Bathurst Island, Nunavut, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abnizova, A.; Miller, E.; Shakil, S.; Young, K. L.

    2012-12-01

    Small water bodies (lakes, ponds) in permafrost environments make up roughly half of the total area of surface water, but their relevance to nutrient and carbon fluxes on a landscape scale still remains largely unknown. Small variations in pond water balance as a result of seasonal changes in precipitation, evaporation, or drainage processes have the potential to produce considerable changes in the carbon and nutrient budgets as small changes in the water level can have a major effect on volumes and surface areas of ponds. The aims of this study were (1) to identify the main characteristics in pond hydrology both seasonally and between years; (2) to identify factors controlling variation in measured physicochemical variables; and (3) to detect seasonal trends in the hydrological and chemical characteristics of ponds located in an extensive low-gradient High Arctic wetland. We conducted detailed limnological surveys of 50 wetland ponds located at Polar Bear Pass (PBP), Bathurst Island, Nunavut, Canada during 2007-2010. The results indicate large seasonal variability in physicochemical parameters that is associated with pond water budget changes, especially for ponds with steady water levels vs. dynamic ponds (fluctuating water levels). Principal component analysis (PCA) of the datasets indicated that major ion content, specifically calcium (Ca2+), was responsible for much of the variability among the ponds in both 2008 and 2009. Additionally in 2009 most of the variability was also due to specific conductivity in the summer and magnesium (Mg2+) in the fall. These trends are typically identified as a result of dilution or evapo-concentration processes in small water bodies. In 2007, a warm and dry year, pH and potassium (K+) were responsible for much of variation between ponds. This is attributed to high vegetation growth in ponds and a longer growing season. While no trend was identified in 2010 (PCA analysis), calculations of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from 50

  16. Petroleum prospectivity of the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grantz, A.; Hart, P.E.

    2012-01-01

    Reconnaissance seismic reflection data indicate that Canada Basin is a >700,000 sq. km. remnant of the Amerasia Basin of the Arctic Ocean that lies south of the Alpha-Mendeleev Large Igneous Province, which was constructed across the northern part of the Amerasia Basin between about 127 and 89-83.5 Ma. Canada Basin was filled by Early Jurassic to Holocene detritus from the Beaufort-Mackenzie Deltaic System, which drains the northern third of interior North America, with sizable contributions from Alaska and Northwest Canada. The basin contains roughly 5 or 6 million cubic km of sediment. Three fourths or more of this volume generates low amplitude seismic reflections, interpreted to represent hemipelagic deposits, which contain lenses to extensive interbeds of moderate amplitude reflections interpreted to represent unconfined turbidite and amalgamated channel deposits.Extrapolation from Arctic Alaska and Northwest Canada suggests that three fourths of the section in Canada Basin is correlative with stratigraphic sequences in these areas that contain intervals of hydrocarbon source rocks. In addition, worldwide heat flow averages suggest that about two thirds of Canada Basin lies in the oil or gas windows. Structural, stratigraphic and combined structural and stratigraphic features of local to regional occurrence offer exploration targets in Canada Basin, and at least one of these contains bright spots. However, deep water (to almost 4000 m), remoteness from harbors and markets, and thick accumulations of seasonal to permanent sea ice (until its possible removal by global warming later this century) will require the discovery of very large deposits for commercial success in most parts of Canada Basin. ?? 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

  17. 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.

  18. Science Traverses in the Canadian High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williamson, Marie-Claude

    2012-01-01

    The presentation is divided into three parts. Part I is an overview of early expeditions to the High Arctic, and their political consequences at the time. The focus then shifts to the Geological Survey of Canada s mapping program in the North (Operation Franklin), and to the Polar Continental Shelf Project (PCSP), a unique organization that resides within the Government of Canada s Department of Natural Resources, and supports mapping projects and science investigations. PCSP is highlighted throughout the presentation so a description of mandate, budgets, and support infrastructure is warranted. In Part II, the presenter describes the planning required in advance of scientific deployments carried out in the Canadian High Arctic from the perspective of government and university investigators. Field operations and challenges encountered while leading arctic field teams in fly camps are also described in this part of the presentation, with particular emphasis on the 2008 field season. Part III is a summary of preliminary results obtained from a Polar Survey questionnaire sent out to members of the Arctic research community in anticipation of the workshop. The last part of the talk is an update on the analog program at the Canadian Space Agency, specifically, the Canadian Analog Research Network (CARN) and current activities related to Analog missions, 2009-2010.

  19. Debating the Arctic during the Ukraine Crisis – Comparing Arctic State Identities and Media Discourses in Canada and Norway

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Burke, Danita Catherine; Rahbek-Clemmensen, Jon

    2017-01-01

    Previous studies have argued that domestic factors, including each state’s Arctic state identities, may explain why some Western states (e.g. Canada) have been more critical of Russia in the Arctic than others (e.g. Norway). The present study analyses part of the link between Arctic state...... assertive course vis-à-vis Russia. In Norway, the strong economic discourse coloured early debates about the crisis, but after the widening of economic sanctions against Russia in the summer of 2014, territorial discourses played a more important role. The article thus illustrates that Arctic state...

  20. Wrench faulting in the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-12-01

    Synthesis of seismic velocity, potential field, and geologic data from within the Canada Basin of the Arctic Ocean and its surrounding margins suggests that a northeast-trending structural fabric has influenced the origin, evolution, and current tectonics of the basin. This fabric is defined by a diverse set of observations, including (1) a magnetic lineament extending from offshore Prince Patrick Island to the bend in the Canada Basin Gravity Low that separates higher magnetic amplitudes to the northwest from a region of more subdued anomalies to the southeast; (2) the orientation of the 600-km long Northwind Escarpment along the edge of the Canada Basin; (3) a large, linear, positive magnetic anomaly that parallels Northwind Escarpment; (4) negative flower structures along the base of the Northwind Escarpment identified in seismic reflection profiles; (5) the edges of a linear, 150-km-long by 20-km-wide by 2000-m deep, basin in the Chukchi Plateau; (6) the sub-parallel ridges of Sever Spur along the Canadian margin north of Prince Patrick Island; (7) an oblong gravity low interpreted to indicate thick sediments beneath an inferred rift basin at 78oN in ~3600 m water depth; (8) the offshore extensions of the Canning sinistral and Richardson dextral fault zones; (9) the offshore extension of the D3 magnetic terrain of Saltus et al. (2011); and (10) the association of dredged rocks of the Chukchi Borderland with the Pearya terrane ~2000 km northeast of its present location (Brumley et al., 2015). Ongoing deformation of the Beaufort margin by impingement of the Brooks Range tectonic front is recorded by modern seismicity along the Canning and Richardson fault zones, which imply that deformation is accommodated by slip along the northeast-trending fabric. Together, these features are interpreted to indicate long-lived northeast-southwest oriented tectonic fabric in the development of the Canada Basin from initial rifting to modern deformation of the Beaufort margin

  1. Seasonal evolution of the effective thermal conductivity of the snow and the soil in high Arctic herb tundra at Bylot Island, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domine, Florent; Barrere, Mathieu; Sarrazin, Denis

    2016-11-01

    The values of the snow and soil thermal conductivity, ksnow and ksoil, strongly impact the thermal regime of the ground in the Arctic, but very few data are available to test model predictions for these variables. We have monitored ksnow and ksoil using heated needle probes at Bylot Island in the Canadian High Arctic (73° N, 80° W) between July 2013 and July 2015. Few ksnow data were obtained during the 2013-2014 winter, because little snow was present. During the 2014-2015 winter ksnow monitoring at 2, 12 and 22 cm heights and field observations show that a depth hoar layer with ksnow around 0.02 W m-1 K-1 rapidly formed. At 12 and 22 cm, wind slabs with ksnow around 0.2 to 0.3 W m-1 K-1 formed. The monitoring of ksoil at 10 cm depth shows that in thawed soil ksoil was around 0.7 W m-1 K-1, while in frozen soil it was around 1.9 W m-1 K-1. The transition between both values took place within a few days, with faster thawing than freezing and a hysteresis effect evidenced in the thermal conductivity-liquid water content relationship. The fast transitions suggest that the use of a bimodal distribution of ksoil for modelling may be an interesting option that deserves further testing. Simulations of ksnow using the snow physics model Crocus were performed. Contrary to observations, Crocus predicts high ksnow values at the base of the snowpack (0.12-0.27 W m-1 K-1) and low ones in its upper parts (0.02-0.12 W m-1 K-1). We diagnose that this is because Crocus does not describe the large upward water vapour fluxes caused by the temperature gradient in the snow and soil. These fluxes produce mass transfer between the soil and lower snow layers to the upper snow layers and the atmosphere. Finally, we discuss the importance of the structure and properties of the Arctic snowpack on subnivean life, as species such as lemmings live under the snow most of the year and must travel in the lower snow layer in search of food.

  2. Status of endangered and threatened caribou on Canada's arctic islands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anne Gunn

    2000-04-01

    Full Text Available Caribou (Rangifer tarandus on the Canadian Arctic Islands occur as several populations which are nationally classified as either endangered or threatened. On the western High Arctic (Queen Elizabeth Islands, Peary caribou (R. t. pearyi declined to an estimated 1100 caribou in 1997. This is the lowest recorded abundance since the first aerial survey in 1961 when a high of ca. 24 363 caribou was estimated on those islands. Peary caribou abundance on the eastern Queen Elizabeth Islands is almost unknown. On the southern Arctic Islands, three caribou populations declined by 95-98% between 1973 and 1994 but our information is unclear about the numerical trends for the two other populations. Diagnosis of factors driving the declines is complicated by incomplete information but also because the agents driving the declines vary among the Arctic's different climatic regions. The available evidence indicates that severe winters caused Peary caribou die-offs on the western Queen Elizabeth Islands. On Banks Island, harvesting together with unfavourable snow/ice conditions in some years accelerated the decline. On northwestern Victoria Island, harvesting apparently explains the decline. The role of wolf predation is unknown on Banks and notthwest Victoria islands, although wolf sightings increased during the catibou declines. Reasons for the virtual disappearance of arctic-island caribou on Prince of Wales and Somerset islands are uncertain. Recovery actions have started with Inuit and Inuvialuit reducing their harvesting but it is too soon to evaluate the effect of those changes. Recovery of Peary caribou on the western Queen Elizabeth Islands is uncertain if the current trends toward warmer temperatures and higher snowfall persist.

  3. Phylogenetic analysis of bacteria in sea ice brine sampled from the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2006-01-01

    Bacterial diversity in sea ice brine samples which collected from four stations located at the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean was analyzed by PCR-DGGE. Twenty-three 16S rDNA sequences of bacteria obtained from DGGE bands were cloned and sequenced. Phylogenetic analysis clustered these sequences within γ-proteobacteria, Cytophaga-Flexibacter-Bacteroides (CFB) group, Firmicutes and Actinobacteria. The phylotype of Pseudoalteromonas in the γ-proteobacteria was predominant and members of the CFB group and γ-proteobacteria were highly abundant in studied sea ice brine samples.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    T.S. Murty

    2005-01-01

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

  5. 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 fro...

  6. Freshwater budget of the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean, from salinity, δ18O, and nutrients

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamamoto-Kawai, M.; McLaughlin, F. A.; Carmack, E. C.; Nishino, S.; Shimada, K.

    2008-01-01

    The contribution of freshwater components (e.g., meteoric, sea ice, and Pacific water) in the Canada Basin is quantified using salinity, δ18O, and nutrient data collected in 2003 and 2004. The penetration depth of sea ice meltwater is limited to the upper 30 m, and brine, rejected during sea ice formation, is observed from 30 to 250 m depth. The fraction of meteoric water is high in the upper 50 m and decreases with depth. Pacific water entering via Bering Strait is the main source of freshwater below 50 m depth. Bering Strait throughflow, which transports Pacific water with salinity 32.5 together with meteoric water supplied upstream of the Bering Strait, contributes up to 75% of freshwater input (>3200 km3 a-1) to the Canada Basin. The mean residence time of Pacific water in the Canada Basin is estimated to be 11 years. Precipitation and river runoff from both North American and Eurasian continents add >800 km3 a-1 and sea ice formation removes export of ice and liquid fresh water from the Canada Basin contributes ˜40% of the freshwater flux from the Arctic Ocean to the North Atlantic Ocean.

  7. 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.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Burke, Danita Catherine

    2017-01-01

    . This paper explores the origins of Canada’s image as the steward of the Arctic environment which started with the 1970 Arctic Waters Pollution Prevention Act legislation and addresses the central research questions, how did Canada’s role as the steward of the Arctic environment begin and evolve and how...... to examine the circumstances which led to the creation and success of Canada’s stewardship role and its implications for Canadian and international shipping in the Arctic region before any changes are made to the governance of the region through unilateral legislation changes or new international agreements...... important is the Arctic Waters Pollution Prevention Act for international acceptance of Canada’s stewardship role and maritime jurisdiction in the Arctic region?...

  9. Canada’s 2009 Northern Strategy: Cold War Policy in a Warming Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-05-19

    agreement “is the charter under which a tenth of Canada may very well become the world’s most northerly banana republic.”64...accessed March 1, 2011). 196 Thomas Homer-Dixon, Positive Feedback, Dynamic Ice Sheets and the Recarbonization of the Global Fuel Supply, http...Wandrey, “USGS Fact Sheet 2008-3049: Circum-Arctic Resource Appraisal: Estimates of Undiscovered Oil and Gas North of the Arctic Circle,” United

  10. Domesticating the Arctic: A Discourse Analysis of Canada's Arctic Foreign Policy

    OpenAIRE

    Aaser, Agnes Viktoria

    2014-01-01

    This thesis investigates how the concept the Arctic is utilized in a Canadian Arctic foreign policy context today. The thesis main argument is that the Canadian government discursively represents the Arctic as a domestic space by drawing on cultural references, historical analogies, geopolitical identity and representation of danger and external threats. This argument is based on a qualitative study of key Arctic policy documents produced by the Harper government since 2009. The study is...

  11. Losing the Arctic edge : Canada needs to move quickly to join international rivals exploiting the potential of the Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McKenzie-Brown, P.

    2008-07-15

    Canada's Arctic oil and gas history was outlined. Oil and gas exploration activities in the Canadian Arctic began in 1911, when explorers hunted for seepages in the region. Studies of the area prompted plans to build pipeline infrastructure, which were subsequently postponed due to World War 1. Exploration in the 1960s and 1970s showed enormous natural gas reserves and a number of small oil fields. Despite skyrocketing prices, Canada's exploration of the Arctic is now almost at a standstill when compared to the activities of other northern countries. Canada's most northerly oil production comes from the 88-year old Normal Wells field, which serves a few small towns in the Mackenzie Delta. Natural gas resources are expensive to develop, and surplus gas supplies have reduced the need for further activities. Disputes over northern pipelines with aboriginal groups have also had an impact on exploration activities. It was concluded that the liquefied natural gas (LNG) market may provide more market options for natural gas consumers. 2 figs.

  12. Tropical forcing of the recent rapid Arctic warming in northeastern Canada and Greenland.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ding, Qinghua; Wallace, John M; Battisti, David S; Steig, Eric J; Gallant, Ailie J E; Kim, Hyung-Jin; Geng, Lei

    2014-05-08

    Rapid Arctic warming and sea-ice reduction in the Arctic Ocean are widely attributed to anthropogenic climate change. The Arctic warming exceeds the global average warming because of feedbacks that include sea-ice reduction and other dynamical and radiative feedbacks. We find that the most prominent annual mean surface and tropospheric warming in the Arctic since 1979 has occurred in northeastern Canada and Greenland. In this region, much of the year-to-year temperature variability is associated with the leading mode of large-scale circulation variability in the North Atlantic, namely, the North Atlantic Oscillation. Here we show that the recent warming in this region is strongly associated with a negative trend in the North Atlantic Oscillation, which is a response to anomalous Rossby wave-train activity originating in the tropical Pacific. Atmospheric model experiments forced by prescribed tropical sea surface temperatures simulate the observed circulation changes and associated tropospheric and surface warming over northeastern Canada and Greenland. Experiments from the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project Phase 5 (ref. 16) models with prescribed anthropogenic forcing show no similar circulation changes related to the North Atlantic Oscillation or associated tropospheric warming. This suggests that a substantial portion of recent warming in the northeastern Canada and Greenland sector of the Arctic arises from unforced natural variability.

  13. Holocene fire regimes and treeline migration rates in sub-arctic Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sulphur, Kyle C.; Goldsmith, Shantal A.; Galloway, Jennifer M.; Macumber, Andrew; Griffith, Fritz; Swindles, Graeme T.; Patterson, R. Timothy; Falck, Hendrik; Clark, Ian D.

    2016-10-01

    Holocene climate change resulted in major vegetation reorganization in sub-arctic Canada near modern treeline. However, little is known of the effects of long-term climate change on boreal forest composition and fire regimes below treeline in this region. We present a high-resolution vegetation and fire history from two sites within the modern boreal forest in the central Northwest Territories, Canada, to provide new insight on sub-arctic vegetation response to Holocene climate dynamics and the role of fire in boreal ecosystems. Palynological analysis of sediments retrieved from Waite and Danny's lakes (informal) is used to reconstruct regional vegetation dynamics and boreal fire regimes. The longer Danny's Lake record documents treeline expansion beginning at ca. 7430-7220 cal yr BP. Integration of our new data with previous work shows that treeline expanded between ca. 4050 cal. yr BP and ca. 3840 cal yr BP at a rate of ca. 50 m/yr in response to the 1-2 °C increase in temperature estimated for the Holocene Thermal Maximum. Forest fires were relatively frequent during the early Holocene, before declining in frequency in response to development of cooler and wetter climate conditions associated with the Neoglacial (beginning after ca. 2200-2320 cal yr BP). We document a trend of increasing fire frequency in the 20th century that is correlated with warming at this time. These dynamics south of modern treeline provide insight into factors creating heterogeneity in plant community responses to large-scale climate events in high northern latitudes and suggest that large scale reorganization of boreal vegetation and fire regimes can be expected over the coming decades.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Summers, Ch.

    2010-07-01

    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

  15. Cryogenic Features Of Tundra Soils Along A Bioclimate Gradient In Arctic Alaska And Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ping, C.; Michaelson, G. J.; Tarnocai, C.; Walker, D. A.

    2005-12-01

    Previous field research describing Polar Desert soils of High Arctic, Canada, have emphasized the soils as having minimal development. However, based on recent field studies we found that cryogenesis plays a controlling role in soil formation in the High Arctic, just as in the Middle and Low Arctic. Cryoturbation is one kind of cryogenic process in that soil horizons are mixed, warped, broken or mixed due to frost heave, frost churning and frost cracking. However, in most recent sediments or young soils, cryoturbation is none to minimal and soil horizons are relatively flat. As the cryogenic process proceeds with time, cryoturbated features become dominant through most of the profile. The landscape of the High Arctic (Isechsen, Subzone A) is dominated by small contraction-crack polygons, cryogenesis results in strong cryogenic structures but cryoturbated features are more prominent at the surface horizons. Massive ground ice, including ice wedge, is common. In Middle Arctic (Mould Bay, Subzone B; and Green Cabin, Subzone C) the landscape is dominated by nonsorted circles (frost boils), small nonsorted polygons, earth hummocks and turf hummocks. In Subzone C, nonsorted circles, small nonsorted polygons and turf hummocks formed in loamy and sandy soils. Throughout the bioclimate transect, the depth of the active layer does not decrease with increasing latitude but responds primarily to the insulating effects of vegetation cover where present. The depth of active layers ranges from 40 to 60 cm. Due to the presence of permafrost, downward drainage is restricted; reducing condition often appear at the lower active layer and upper permafrost due to a saturated zone on top of the upper permafrost. The most common reduced metals are Fe and Mn. Soils in the center of the nonsorted circle and small polygons are subjected to alternate reduction and oxidation which result in redoximorphic features. Whereas soils between the circles are mostly reduced due to thicker organic

  16. Molecular genetic diversity of bacteria in the bottom section of arctic sea ice from the Canada Basin

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    LI Huirong; YU Yong; CHEN Bo; ZENG Yinxin; REN Daming

    2005-01-01

    PCR-DGGE approach was used to analyze bacterial diversity in the bottom section of seven arctic sea ice samples colleted from the Canada Basin. Thirty-two 16S rDNA sequences were obtained from prominent DGGE bands. The closest relatives of these sequences are found to be those of cultivated or uncultured bacteria from antarctic or arctic sea ice. Phylogenetic analysis clustered these sequences or phylotypes within α- proteobacteria, γ-proteobacteria and CFB (cytophaga-flexibacter-bacteroides) group. Sequences belonging to γ-proteobacteria were dominant and members of the CFB group were highly abundant. It was suggested that the CFB group was the representative of the bottom section of sea ice samples.

  17. Sedimentology of cores recovered from the Canada Basin of the Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, B. D.; Saint-Ange, F.; Pohlman, J.; Higgins, J.; Mosher, D. C.; Lorenson, T. D.; Hart, P.

    2011-12-01

    Researchers from the United States and Canada are collaborating to understand the tectonic and sedimentary history of the Arctic Ocean between Canada and Alaska. As part of this on-going study, a joint US-Canadian ice breaker expedition operated in parts of the Canada Basin during August 2010. Occasional interruptions of the seismic data acquisition provided the ship time to collect gravity and piston cores at five sites-of-opportunity throughout the basin. High-resolution multibeam bathymetry and chirp sub-bottom profiler data collected immediately prior to coring reveal the fine-scale morphology of each site. Core photographs, X-ray radiographs, and physical property data support the following descriptions. Two piston cores were collected from the Beaufort Sea continental margin in a region of known bottom simulating reflectors (BSRs). Site 1 (2538 m water depth): This core recovered 5.72 m of gas-charged, gray sticky clay and silty-clay from an approximately 1100 m diameter, 130 m high conical mound overlying the crest of a buried anticline. Gas hydrate recovered in the core catcher combined with cracks and voids, methane and other hydrocarbon gasses, pyrite concretions, chemosynthetic clams, carbonate nodules, and soft carbonate masses indicate the likely upward migration of deep-seated fluids. Site 2 (1157 m water depth): This core, positioned 40 km upslope from the gas hydrate core, recovered 3 m of gray sticky silty clay and clayey silt near the base of an erosional scarp. Some voids and fracturing are apparent but carbonate masses and pyrite concretions are absent. Site 3 (3070 m water depth): This core from the top of a seamount discovered in 2009 in the north-central part of the Canada Basin recovered 4.94 m of sediment. More than 3 m of dark brown to yellowish brown, massive interbedded silty clays with sands and matrix-supported gravels (ice rafted debris [IRD]) occur in abrupt contact with underlying reddish yellow to brownish yellow silty clay and

  18. 13th Arctic Ungulate Conference, 22-26 August 2011, Yellowknife, Canada

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Birgitta Åhman (editor in chief

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available The 13th International Arctic Ungulate Conference was held in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada, from 22-26 August 2011. This biennial conference is the primary venue for meetings of the International Arctic Ungulate Society.  Over 200 delegates attended the conference with representation from Canada, the United States, Norway, Sweden, Greenland, Finland, Russia, and Japan. The theme of the conference was “Challenges of Managing Northern Ungulates”. The goal of the conference organizers was to address the difficulties of managing ungulate populations that are faced with the unpredictable effects of climate change and an ever-increasing human presence on the land. The conference also focussed on the challenges associated with developing recovery actions for declining caribou and reindeer populations that are an integral part of Aboriginal cultures and ways of life.

  19. Parasitism of Ground Beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) by a New Species of Hairworm (Nematomorpha: Gordiida) in Arctic Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ernst, Crystal M; Hanelt, Ben; Buddle, Christopher M

    2016-06-01

    The host-parasite associations between ground beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) and hairworms (Nematomorpha: Gordiida) collected from the Arctic (an understudied and ecologically important region) is described. Carabids and their parasites were collected from 12 sites spanning the 3 northernmost ecoclimatic zones of Canada (north boreal, subarctic, and high Arctic) using standardized methods. The beetles and hairworms were identified using traditional morphological approaches. Seven beetle species are recorded as hosts: Amara alpina, Pterostichus caribou, Pterostichus brevicornis, Pterostichus tareumiut, Pterostichus haematopus, Patrobus septentrionis, and Notiophilus borealis. All represent new host records (increasing the known North American host list from 14 to 21), and this is the first record of hairworm infection in the genus Notiophilus. Beetles from Banks Island, Northwest Territory, were infected in high numbers (11-19% per sampling period) and were used as an ecological case study. There was no significant relationship between infection status and host species, body size, or sex. Beetles collected in yellow pan traps and in wet habitats were more likely to be infected, likely due to water-seeking behavior induced by the parasites. Morphological examinations indicate that the hairworms collected from all locations represent a single, new species of Gordionus, making it only the sixth hairworm species and the third species of that genus found in Canada. Hosts are unknown for all other Canadian (and 1 Alaskan) Gordionus species.

  20. Coarse mode aerosols in the High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baibakov, K.; O'Neill, N. T.; Chaubey, J. P.; Saha, A.; Duck, T. J.; Eloranta, E. W.

    2014-12-01

    Fine mode (submicron) aerosols in the Arctic have received a fair amount of scientific attention in terms of smoke intrusions during the polar summer and Arctic haze pollution during the polar winter. Relatively little is known about coarse mode (supermicron) aerosols, notably dust, volcanic ash and sea salt. Asian dust is a regular springtime event whose optical and radiative forcing effects have been fairly well documented at the lower latitudes over North America but rarely reported for the Arctic. Volcanic ash, whose socio-economic importance has grown dramatically since the fear of its effects on aircraft engines resulted in the virtual shutdown of European civil aviation in the spring of 2010 has rarely been reported in the Arctic in spite of the likely probability that ash from Iceland and the Aleutian Islands makes its way into the Arctic and possibly the high Arctic. Little is known about Arctic sea salt aerosols and we are not aware of any literature on the optical measurement of these aerosols. In this work we present preliminary results of the combined sunphotometry-lidar analysis at two High Arctic stations in North America: PEARL (80°N, 86°W) for 2007-2011 and Barrow (71°N,156°W) for 2011-2014. The multi-years datasets were analyzed to single out potential coarse mode incursions and study their optical characteristics. In particular, CIMEL sunphotometers provided coarse mode optical depths as well as information on particle size and refractive index. Lidar measurements from High Spectral Resolution lidars (AHSRL at PEARL and NSHSRL at Barrow) yielded vertically resolved aerosol profiles and gave an indication of particle shape and size from the depolarization ratio and color ratio profiles. Additionally, we employed supplementary analyses of HYSPLIT backtrajectories, OMI aerosol index, and NAAPS (Navy Aerosol Analysis and Prediction System) outputs to study the spatial context of given events.

  1. Upper Ordovician and Lower Silurian chitinozoans from central Nevada and Arctic Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soufiane, A; Achab, A

    2000-12-01

    Late Ordovician and Early Silurian chitinozoans from the uppermost Vinini Formation, and the Hanson Creek Formation in central Nevada and the lower Cape Phillips Formation, Cape Manning section, in Arctic Canada have been re-investigated and a new chitinozoan biozonation is proposed. The Upper Ordovician of central Nevada can easily be correlated to that of Arctic Canada through the common occurrence of the Ordochitina nevadensis biozone in both regions. No such correlation, however, is possible with the Late Ordovician of Anticosti Island in eastern Canada because of the absence of the index Upper Ordovician chitinozoan zonal species of central Nevada such as Belonechitina tenuispinata sp. nov, Ordochitina nevadensis sp. nov. and Nevadachitina vininica gen. nov., sp. nov. in the former area.One new genus, Nevadachitina, and nine new species, Eisenackitina ripae, Belonechitina martinica, Nevadachitina vininica, Nevadachitina praevininica, Ordochitina nevadensis, Belonechitina tenuispinata, Belonechitina parvispinata, Tanuchitina laurentiana, Angochitina hansonica are described and illustrated in this paper and four species are left in open nomenclature.

  2. A double-halocline structure in the Canada Basin of the Arctic Ocean

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    SHI Jiuxin; ZHAO Jinping; LI Shujiang; CAO Yong; QU Ping

    2005-01-01

    A year-round halocline is a particular hydrographic structure in the upper Arctic Ocean. On the basis of an analysis of the hydrographic data collected in the Arctic Ocean, it is found that a double-halocline structure exists in the upper layer of the southern Canada Basin,which is absolutely different from the Cold Halocline Layer (CHL) in the Eurasian Basin. The Pacific-origin water is the primary factor in the formation of the double-halocline structure. The upper halocline lies between the summer modification and the winter modification of the Pacific-origin water while the lower halocline results from the Pacific-origin water overlying upon the Atlantic-origin water. Both haloclines are all the year-round although seasonal and interannual variations have been detected in the historical data.

  3. Stock origins of Dolly Varden collected from Beaufort Sea coastal sites of Arctic Alaska and Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krueger, C.C.; Wilmot, R.L.; Everett, R.J.

    1999-01-01

    Anadromous northern Dolly Varden Salvelinus malma support a summer subsistence fishery in Beaufort Sea coastal waters. These same waters coincide with areas of oil and gas exploration and development. The purpose of this study was to assess variation in stock origins of Dolly Varden collected from sites along 400 km of Beaufort Sea coast. Mixed-stock analyses (MSA) of allozyme data were used to compare collections from four sites (Endicolt near Prudhoe Bay, Mikkelsen Bay, and Kaktovik in Alaska and Phillips Bay in Canada) and to assess variation in stock contributions among summer months and between 1987 and 1988. The MSA estimates for individual stocks were summed into estimates for three stock groups: western stocks from the area near Sagavarnirktok River and Prudhoe Bay (SAG), Arctic National Wildlife Refuge stocks (Arctic Refuge), and Canadian stocks. The MSA of Endicott samples taken in 1987 and 1988 did not differ among months in terms of contributions from local SAG stocks (range, 71-95%). Contributions from nonlocal (>100 km distant) Canadian and Arctic Refuge stocks were not different from zero in 1987, but contributions from Canadian stocks were so in July (17%) and August (20%) but not in September of 1988. Thus, stock contributions to Endicott collections were different between 1987 and 1988. Samples from the Kaktovik area in 1988 were different between months in terms of contributions from nonlocal SAG stocks (July, 7%; August, 27%). Significant contributions to these samples were made both months by Canadian (25% and 17%) and local Arctic Refuge stocks (68% and 56%). Among the four coastal sites, local stocks typically contributed most to collections; however, every site had collections that contained significant contributions from nonlocal stocks. The MSA estimates clearly revealed the movement of Dolly Varden between U.S. and Canada coastal waters. If local stocks are affected by oil and gas development activities, distant subsistence fisheries

  4. Long range transport of mercury to the Arctic and across Canada

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Durnford

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available This study is the most extensive study to date on the transport of mercury to the Arctic. Moreover, it is the first such study to use a fully-coupled, online chemical transport model, Environment Canada's Global/Regional Atmospheric Heavy Metals model (GRAHM, where the meteorology and mercury processes are fully integrated. It is also the only study to date on the transport of mercury across Canada. We determined source attribution from Asia, North America, Russia and Europe at six arctic verification stations, as well as three subarctic and eight midlatitude Canadian stations.

    We have found that Asia, despite having transport efficiencies that were almost always lower than those of North America and often lower than those of Russia, was the dominant source of gaseous atmospheric mercury at all verification stations: it contributed the most mercury (29–37% at all stations, seasons and levels considered, its concentrations frequently explained nearly 100% of the variability in the concentrations produced by the simulation performed with full global emissions, particularly in the absence of local sources, and it generated the most long range transport (LRT events, causing 43%, 67% and 75% of the events at the arctic, subarctic and midlatitude stations, respectively. For the Arctic, Russian transport efficiencies tended to be the strongest, as expected, while European and Asian efficiencies were lower and higher, respectively, than those found in the literature. This disagreement is likely produced by mercury's long lifetime relative to that of other pollutants. The accepted springtime preference for the trans-Pacific transport of Asian pollution was evident only in the midlatitude group of stations, being masked in the arctic and subarctic groups by the occurrence of atmospheric mercury depletion events. Some neighbouring arctic stations recorded dissimilar numbers of LRT events; despite their proximity, the behaviour of mercury at

  5. Long range transport of mercury to the Arctic and across Canada

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. Durnford

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available This study is the most extensive study to date on the transport of mercury to the Arctic. Moreover, it is the first such study to use a fully-coupled, online chemical transport model, Environment Canada's Global/Regional Atmospheric Heavy Metals model (GRAHM, where the meteorology and mercury processes are fully integrated. It is also the only study to date on the transport of mercury across Canada. We estimated source attribution from Asia, North America, Russia and Europe at six arctic verification stations, as well as three subarctic and eight midlatitude Canadian stations.

    We have found that Asia, despite having transport efficiencies that were almost always lower than those of North America and often lower than those of Russia, was the dominant source of gaseous atmospheric mercury at all verification stations: it contributed the most mercury (29–37% at all stations, seasons and levels considered, its concentrations frequently explained nearly 100% of the variability in the concentrations produced by the simulation performed with full global emissions, particularly in the absence of local sources, and it generated the most long range transport (LRT events, causing 43%, 67% and 75% of the events at the arctic, subarctic and midlatitude stations, respectively. For the Arctic, Russian transport efficiencies tended to be the strongest, as expected, while European and Asian efficiencies were lower and higher, respectively, than those found in the literature. This disagreement is likely produced by mercury's long lifetime relative to that of other pollutants. The accepted springtime preference for the trans-Pacific transport of Asian pollution was evident only in the midlatitude group of stations, being masked in the arctic and subarctic groups by the occurrence of atmospheric mercury depletion events. Some neighbouring arctic stations recorded dissimilar numbers of LRT events; despite their proximity, the behaviour of mercury at these

  6. Sedimentary record from the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean: implications for late to middle Pleistocene glacial history

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dong, Linsen; Liu, Yanguang; Shi, Xuefa; Polyak, Leonid; Huang, Yuanhui; Fang, Xisheng; Liu, Jianxing; Zou, Jianjun; Wang, Kunshan; Sun, Fuqiang; Wang, Xuchen

    2017-05-01

    Sediment core ARC4-BN05 collected from the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean, covers the late to middle Quaternary (Marine Isotope Stage - MIS - 1-15, ca. 0.5-0.6 Ma) as estimated by correlation to earlier proposed Arctic Ocean stratigraphies and AMS14C dating of the youngest sediments. Detailed examination of clay and bulk mineralogy along with grain size, content of Ca and Mn, and planktic foraminiferal numbers in core ARC4-BN05 provides important new information about sedimentary environments and provenance. We use increased contents of coarse debris as an indicator of glacier collapse events at the margins of the western Arctic Ocean, and identify the provenance of these events from mineralogical composition. Notably, peaks of dolomite debris, including large dropstones, track the Laurentide Ice Sheet (LIS) discharge events to the Arctic Ocean. Major LIS inputs occurred during the stratigraphic intervals estimated as MIS 3, intra-MIS 5 and 7 events, MIS 8, and MIS 10. Inputs from the East Siberian Ice Sheet (ESIS) are inferred from peaks of smectite, kaolinite, and chlorite associated with coarse sediment. Major ESIS sedimentary events occurred in the intervals estimated as MIS 4, MIS 6 and MIS 12. Differences in LIS vs. ESIS inputs can be explained by ice-sheet configurations at different sea levels, sediment delivery mechanisms (iceberg rafting, suspension plumes, and debris flows), and surface circulation. A long-term change in the pattern of sediment inputs, with an apparent step change near the estimated MIS 7-8 boundary (ca. 0.25 Ma), presumably indicates an overall glacial expansion at the western Arctic margins, especially in North America.

  7. A sub-surface eddy at inertial current layer in the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    An Arctic Ocean eddy in sub-surface layer is analyzed in this paper by use of temperature, salinity and current profiles data obtained at an ice camp in the Canada Basin during the second Chinese Arctic Expedition in summer of 2003.In the vertical temperature section, the eddy shows itself as an isolated cold water block at depth of 60 m with a minimum temperature of-1.5℃, about 0.5℃ colder than the ambient water.Isopycnals in the eddy form a pattern of convex, which indicates the eddy is anticyclonic.Although maximum velocity near O.4 m s-1 occurs in the current records observed synchronously, the current pattern is far away from a typical eddy.By further analysis, inertial frequency oscillations with amplitudes comparable with the eddy velocity are found in the sub-surface layer currents.After filter the inertial current and mean current, an axisymmetric current pattern of an eddy with maximum velocity radius of 5 km is obtained.The analysis of the T-S characteristics of the eddy core water and its ambient waters supports the conclusion that the eddy was formed on the Chukchi Shelf and migrated northeastward into the northern Canada Basin.

  8. Evolution of the eddy field in the Arctic Ocean's Canada Basin, 2005-2015

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Mengnan; Timmermans, Mary-Louise; Cole, Sylvia; Krishfield, Richard; Toole, John

    2016-08-01

    The eddy field across the Arctic Ocean's Canada Basin is analyzed using Ice-Tethered Profiler (ITP) and moored measurements of temperature, salinity, and velocity spanning 2005 to 2015. ITPs encountered 243 eddies, 98% of which were anticyclones, with approximately 70% of these having anomalously cold cores. The spatially and temporally varying eddy field is analyzed accounting for sampling biases in the unevenly distributed ITP data and caveats in detection methods. The highest concentration of eddies was found in the western and southern portions of the basin, close to topographic margins and boundaries of the Beaufort Gyre. The number of lower halocline eddies approximately doubled from 2005-2012 to 2013-2014. The increased eddy density suggests more active baroclinic instability of the Beaufort Gyre that releases available potential energy to balance the wind energy input; this may stabilize the Gyre spin-up and associated freshwater increase.

  9. High Arctic summer warming tracked by increased Cassiope tetragona growth in the world's northernmost polar desert.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weijers, Stef; Buchwal, Agata; Blok, Daan; Löffler, Jörg; Elberling, Bo

    2017-05-02

    Rapid climate warming has resulted in shrub expansion, mainly of erect deciduous shrubs in the Low Arctic, but the more extreme, sparsely vegetated, cold and dry High Arctic is generally considered to remain resistant to such shrub expansion in the next decades. Dwarf shrub dendrochronology may reveal climatological causes of past changes in growth, but is hindered at many High Arctic sites by short and fragmented instrumental climate records. Moreover, only few High Arctic shrub chronologies cover the recent decade of substantial warming. This study investigated the climatic causes of growth variability of the evergreen dwarf shrub Cassiope tetragona between 1927 and 2012 in the northernmost polar desert at 83°N in North Greenland. We analysed climate-growth relationships over the period with available instrumental data (1950-2012) between a 102-year-long C. tetragona shoot length chronology and instrumental climate records from the three nearest meteorological stations, gridded climate data, and North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and Arctic Oscillation (AO) indices. July extreme maximum temperatures (JulTemx ), as measured at Alert, Canada, June NAO, and previous October AO, together explained 41% of the observed variance in annual C. tetragona growth and likely represent in situ summer temperatures. JulTemx explained 27% and was reconstructed back to 1927. The reconstruction showed relatively high growing season temperatures in the early to mid-twentieth century, as well as warming in recent decades. The rapid growth increase in C. tetragona shrubs in response to recent High Arctic summer warming shows that recent and future warming might promote an expansion of this evergreen dwarf shrub, mainly through densification of existing shrub patches, at High Arctic sites with sufficient winter snow cover and ample water supply during summer from melting snow and ice as well as thawing permafrost, contrasting earlier notions of limited shrub growth sensitivity to

  10. Mercury export to the Arctic Ocean from the Mackenzie River, Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emmerton, Craig A; Graydon, Jennifer A; Gareis, Jolie A L; St Louis, Vincent L; Lesack, Lance F W; Banack, Janelle K A; Hicks, Faye; Nafziger, Jennifer

    2013-07-16

    Circumpolar rivers, including the Mackenzie River in Canada, are sources of the contaminant mercury (Hg) to the Arctic Ocean, but few Hg export studies exist for these rivers. During the 2007-2010 freshet and open water seasons, we collected river water upstream and downstream of the Mackenzie River delta to quantify total mercury (THg) and methylmercury (MeHg) concentrations and export. Upstream of the delta, flow-weighted mean concentrations of bulk THg and MeHg were 14.6 ± 6.2 ng L(-1) and 0.081 ± 0.045 ng L(-1), respectively. Only 11-13% and 44-51% of bulk THg and MeHg export was in the dissolved form. Using concentration-discharge relationships, we calculated bulk THg and MeHg export into the delta of 2300-4200 kg yr(-1) and 15-23 kg yr(-1) over the course of the study. Discharge is not presently known in channels exiting the delta, so we assessed differences in river Hg concentrations upstream and downstream of the delta to estimate its influence on Hg export to the ocean. Bulk THg and MeHg concentrations decreased 19% and 11% through the delta, likely because of particle settling and other processes in the floodplain. These results suggest that northern deltas may be important accumulators of river Hg in their floodplains before export to the Arctic Ocean.

  11. Benthic primary production and mineralization in a High Arctic Fjord

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Attard, Karl M.; 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...... light data, we estimate an annual Arctic Ocean benthic GPP of 11.5 × 107 t C yr−1. On average, this value represents 26% of the Arctic Ocean annual net phytoplankton production estimates. This scarcely considered component is thus potentially important for contemporary and future Arctic ecosystem...

  12. Chapter 50: Geology and tectonic development of the Amerasia and Canada Basins, Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grantz, A.; Hart, P.E.; Childers, V.A.

    2011-01-01

    Amerasia Basin is the product of two phases of counterclockwise rotational opening about a pole in the lower Mackenzie Valley of NW Canada. Phase 1 opening brought ocean-continent transition crust (serpentinized peridotite?) to near the seafloor of the proto-Amerasia Basin, created detachment on the Eskimo Lakes Fault Zone of the Canadian Arctic margin and thinned the continental crust between the fault zone and the proto-Amerasia Basin to the west, beginning about 195 Ma and ending prior to perhaps about 160 Ma. The symmetry of the proto-Amerasia Basin was disrupted by clockwise rotation of the Chukchi Microcontinent into the basin from an original position along the Eurasia margin about a pole near 72??N, 165 Wabout 145.5-140 Ma. Phase 2 opening enlarged the proto-Amerasia Basin by intrusion of mid-ocean ridge basalt along its axis between about 131 and 127.5 Ma. Following intrusion of the Phase 2 crust an oceanic volcanic plateau, the Alpha-Mendeleev Ridge LIP (large igneous province), was extruded over the northern Amerasia Basin from about 127 to 89-75 Ma. Emplacement of the LIP halved the area of the Amerasia Basin, and the area lying south of the LIP became the Canada Basin. ?? 2011 The Geological Society of London.

  13. Chapter 50 Geology and tectonic development of the Amerasia and Canada Basins, Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grantz, Arthur; Hart, Patrick E.; Childers, Vicki A

    2011-01-01

    Amerasia Basin is the product of two phases of counterclockwise rotational opening about a pole in the lower Mackenzie Valley of NW Canada. Phase 1 opening brought ocean–continent transition crust (serpentinized peridotite?) to near the seafloor of the proto-Amerasia Basin, created detachment on the Eskimo Lakes Fault Zone of the Canadian Arctic margin and thinned the continental crust between the fault zone and the proto-Amerasia Basin to the west, beginning about 195 Ma and ending prior to perhaps about 160 Ma. The symmetry of the proto-Amerasia Basin was disrupted by clockwise rotation of the Chukchi Microcontinent into the basin from an original position along the Eurasia margin about a pole near 72°N, 165 W about 145.5–140 Ma. Phase 2 opening enlarged the proto-Amerasia Basin by intrusion of mid-ocean ridge basalt along its axis between about 131 and 127.5 Ma. Following intrusion of the Phase 2 crust an oceanic volcanic plateau, the Alpha–Mendeleev Ridge LIP (large igneous province), was extruded over the northern Amerasia Basin from about 127 to 89–75 Ma. Emplacement of the LIP halved the area of the Amerasia Basin, and the area lying south of the LIP became the Canada Basin.

  14. Snow and ice melt flow features on Devon Island, Nunavut, Arctic Canada as possible analogs for recent slope flow features on Mars

    OpenAIRE

    Lee, Pascal; Cockell, Charles S.; Marinova, Margarita M; McKay, Christopher P.; Rice Jr., James W.

    2001-01-01

    Based on morphologic and contextual analogs from Devon Island, Arctic Canada, the recent martian slope flow features reported by Malin and Edgett are reinterpreted as being due not necessarily to groundwater seepage but possibly to snow or ice melt.

  15. Shifting El Niño inhibits summer Arctic warming and Arctic sea-ice melting over the Canada Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Chundi; Yang, Song; Wu, Qigang; Li, Zhenning; Chen, Junwen; Deng, Kaiqiang; Zhang, Tuantuan; Zhang, Chengyang

    2016-06-01

    Arctic climate changes include not only changes in trends and mean states but also strong interannual variations in various fields. Although it is known that tropical-extratropical teleconnection is sensitive to changes in flavours of El Niño, whether Arctic climate variability is linked to El Niño, in particular on interannual timescale, remains unclear. Here we demonstrate for the first time a long-range linkage between central Pacific (CP) El Niño and summer Arctic climate. Observations show that the CP warming related to CP El Niño events deepens the tropospheric Arctic polar vortex and strengthens the circumpolar westerly wind, thereby contributing to inhibiting summer Arctic warming and sea-ice melting. Atmospheric model experiments can generally capture the observed responses of Arctic circulation and robust surface cooling to CP El Niño forcing. We suggest that identification of the equator-Arctic teleconnection, via the `atmospheric bridge', can potentially contribute to improving the skill of predicting Arctic climate.

  16. Latest Pleistocene and Holocene glaciation of Baffin Island, Arctic Canada: key patterns and chronologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briner, Jason P.; Davis, P. Thompson; Miller, Gifford H.

    2009-10-01

    Melting glaciers and ice caps on Baffin Island contribute roughly half of the sea-level rise from all ice in Arctic Canada, although they comprise only one-fourth of the total ice in the region. The uncertain future response of arctic glaciers and ice caps to climate change motivates the use of paleodata to evaluate the sensitivity of glaciers to past warm intervals and to constrain mechanisms that drive glacier change. We review the key patterns and chronologies of latest Pleistocene and Holocene glaciation on Baffin Island. The deglaciation by the Laurentide Ice Sheet occurred generally slowly and steadily throughout the Holocene to its present margin (Barnes Ice Cap) except for two periods of rapid retreat: An early interval ˜12 to 10 ka when outlet glaciers retreated rapidly through deep fiords and sounds, and a later interval ˜7 ka when ice over Foxe Basin collapsed. In coastal settings, alpine glaciers were smaller during the Younger Dryas period than during the Little Ice Age. At least some alpine glaciers apparently survived the early Holocene thermal maximum, which was several degrees warmer than today, although data on glacier extent during the early Holocene is extremely sparse. Following the early Holocene thermal maximum, glaciers advanced during Neoglaciation, beginning in some places as early as ˜6 ka, although most sites do not record near-Little Ice Age positions until ˜3.5 to 2.5 ka. Alpine glaciers reached their largest Holocene extents during the Little Ice Age, when temperatures were ˜1-1.5 °C cooler than during the late 20th century. Synchronous advances across Baffin Island throughout Neoglaciation indicate sub-Milankovitch controls on glaciation that could involve major volcanic eruptions and solar variability. Future work should further elucidate the state of glaciers and ice caps during the early Holocene thermal maximum and glacier response to climate forcing mechanisms.

  17. 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.

  18. Further observations of a decreasing atmospheric CO2 uptake capacity in the Canada Basin (Arctic Ocean) due to sea ice loss

    Science.gov (United States)

    Else, Brent G. T.; Galley, R. J.; Lansard, B.; Barber, D. G.; Brown, K.; Miller, L. A.; Mucci, A.; Papakyriakou, T. N.; Tremblay, J.-É.; Rysgaard, S.

    2013-03-01

    data collected in 2009, we evaluated the potential for the southeastern Canada Basin (Arctic Ocean) to act as an atmospheric CO2 sink under the summertime ice-free conditions expected in the near future. Beneath a heavily decayed ice cover, we found surprisingly high pCO2sw (~290-320 µatm), considering that surface water temperatures were low and the influence of ice melt was strong. A simple model simulating melt of the remaining ice and exposure of the surface water for 100 days revealed a weak capacity for atmospheric CO2 uptake (mean flux: -2.4 mmol m-2 d-1), due largely to warming of the shallow mixed layer. Our results confirm a previous finding that the Canada Basin is not a significant sink of atmospheric CO2 under summertime ice-free conditions and that increased ventilation of the surface mixed layer due to sea ice loss is weakening the sink even further.

  19. The Hydromedusae and its distribution in Chukchi Sea and adjacent southern edge waters of Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    张金标; 林茂

    2001-01-01

    The present paper is based on materials collected in Chukchi Sea and adjacent southern edge waters of Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean during the period from July to August 1999 on the icebreaker, the R/V “Xuelong”, by the Chinese First Arctic Scientific Expedition. Totally, 8 species of pelagic Hydromedusae were identified, of which 4 species belonged to Anthomedusae, 2 species to Leptomedusae, 1 species to Trachymedusae and 1 species to Narcomedusae, the Neoturris breviconis is recorded for the first time in Chukchi Sea. Their principal morphological characteristics are described and illustrated. The 8 species of Hydromedusae occurring in the Chukchi Sea were all cold water species, of which 6 species belong to neritic species and 2 species to ocean species. According to the geographic distribution of species, they may be divided into three groups: Arctic species, Arctic-boreal species and Boreal-temperate species. From the view-point of zoogeography, species from these waters belong to the Arctic fauna.The abundance of Hydromedusae in Chukchi Sea was generally low, with a mean value of 108 ind.*10-2*m-3. Rathkea octopunctata and Aglantha digitale were dominant species. From the view-point of vertical distribution Aglantha digitale is inhabiting in the depth of 0 300 m and with the maximum in the depth of 50 m to 100 m.

  20. 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...

  1. Further observations of a decreasing atmospheric CO2 uptake capacity in the Canada Basin (arctic Ocean) due to sea ice loss

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Else, B.G.T.; Galley, R.J.; Lansard, B.

    2013-01-01

    [1] Using data collected in 2009, we evaluated the potential for the southeastern Canada Basin (Arctic Ocean) to act as an atmospheric CO2 sink under the summertime ice-free conditions expected in the near future. Beneath a heavily decayed ice cover, we found surprisingly high pCO2sw (~290–320matm......), considering that surface water temperatures were low and the influence of ice melt was strong. A simple model simulating melt of the remaining ice and exposure of the surface water for 100 days revealed a weak capacity for atmospheric CO2 uptake (mean flux: 2.4 mmol m2 d1), due largely to warming of the shallow....... Galley, B. Lansard, D. G. Barber, K. Brown, L. A. Miller, A. Mucci, T. N. Papakyriakou, J.-É. Tremblay, and S. Rysgaard (2013), Further observations of a decreasing atmospheric CO2 uptake capacity in the Canada Basin (Arctic Ocean) due to sea ice loss, Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 1132–1137, doi:10.1002/grl...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  3. 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

  4. The release of wastewater contaminants in the Arctic: A case study from Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaves-Barquero, Luis G; Luong, Kim Hoang; Mundy, C J; Knapp, Charles W; Hanson, Mark L; Wong, Charles S

    2016-11-01

    The treatment of municipal wastewater in the Arctic is challenging due to a variety of financial, operational, climatic and technical issues. To better understand the efficacy of current wastewater treatment in this region and the hazard posed to receiving waters, we assessed the occurrence of nutrients and contaminants (i.e., pharmaceuticals, antibiotic resistance genes) as they moved through a lagoon-based treatment system in Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, Canada. Wastewater treatment in this community is performed by the use of a lagoon-tundra wetland system that is discharged into the marine environment and is representative of current common practices throughout the region. In 2014, samples were collected before and during lagoon discharge from two locations in the main lagoon, one location downstream from the lagoon effluent and three locations offshore. Grab samples were collected to measure nutrients (e.g., total nitrogen and phosphorus) and the presence of antibiotic resistance gene-bearing microbes, and Polar Organic Chemical Integrative Samplers (POCIS) were deployed to collect passively organic contaminants in all locations. A total of six pharmaceuticals were detected from a screen of twenty-eight analytes during the study: atenolol, carbamazepine, clarithromycin, metoprolol, sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim. The greatest concentrations of nutrients, antibiotic resistance genes (ARGs), and pharmaceuticals were found in sampling locations within the treatment lagoon. Offshore of the release point, we observed limited to no detection of pharmaceuticals and ARGs, but no change in total nitrogen and phosphorus from pre-release. We conclude that the current concentrations of monitored pharmaceuticals do not pose a significant hazard at this time to aquatic organisms in Cambridge Bay. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Microbial life beneath a high arctic glacier.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skidmore, M L; Foght, J M; Sharp, M J

    2000-08-01

    The debris-rich basal ice layers of a high Arctic glacier were shown to contain metabolically diverse microbes that could be cultured oligotrophically at low temperatures (0.3 to 4 degrees C). These organisms included aerobic chemoheterotrophs and anaerobic nitrate reducers, sulfate reducers, and methanogens. Colonies purified from subglacial samples at 4 degrees C appeared to be predominantly psychrophilic. Aerobic chemoheterotrophs were metabolically active in unfrozen basal sediments when they were cultured at 0.3 degrees C in the dark (to simulate nearly in situ conditions), producing (14)CO(2) from radiolabeled sodium acetate with minimal organic amendment (> or =38 microM C). In contrast, no activity was observed when samples were cultured at subfreezing temperatures (glacier provides a viable habitat for life and that microbes may be widespread where the basal ice is temperate and water is present at the base of the glacier and where organic carbon from glacially overridden soils is present. Our observations raise the possibility that in situ microbial production of CO(2) and CH(4) beneath ice masses (e.g., the Northern Hemisphere ice sheets) is an important factor in carbon cycling during glacial periods. Moreover, this terrestrial environment may provide a model for viable habitats for life on Mars, since similar conditions may exist or may have existed in the basal sediments beneath the Martian north polar ice cap.

  6. 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...... for analyses of controls on interannual and seasonal variations in emissions. To help fill this gap we initiated a measurement program in a productive high arctic fen in the Zackenberg valley, NE Greenland. Methane flux measurements have been carried out at the same location since 1997. Compared...

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. Continuous pCO2 time series from Ocean Networks Canada cabled observatories at the northeast Pacific shelf edge and in the sub-tidal Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Juniper, S. Kim; Sastri, Akash; Mihaly, Steven; Duke, Patrick; Else, Brent; Thomas, Helmuth; Miller, Lisa

    2017-04-01

    Marine pCO2 sensor technology has progressed to the point where months-long time series from remotely-deployed pCO2 sensors can be used to document seasonal and higher frequency variability in pCO2 and its relationship to oceanographic processes. Ocean Networks Canada recently deployed pCO2 sensors on two cabled platforms: a bottom-moored (400 m depth), vertical profiler at the edge of the northeast Pacific continental shelf off Vancouver Island, Canada, and a subtidal seafloor platform in the Canadian High Arctic (69˚ N) at Cambridge Bay, Nunavut. Both platforms streamed continuous data to a shore-based archive from Pro-Oceanus pCO2 sensors and other oceanographic instruments. The vertical profiler time series revealed substantial intrusions of corrosive (high CO2/low O2), saltier, colder water masses during the summertime upwelling season and during winter-time reversals of along-slope currents. Step-wise profiles during the downcast provided the most reliable pCO2 data, permitting the sensor to equilibrate to the broad range of pCO2 concentrations encountered over the 400 metre depth interval. The Arctic pCO2 sensor was deployed in August 2015. Reversing seasonal trends in pCO2 and dissolved oxygen values can be related to the changing balance of photosynthesis and respiration under sea ice, as influenced by irradiance. Correlation of pCO2 and dissolved oxygen sensor data and the collection of calibration samples have permitted evaluation of sensor performance in relation to operational conditions encountered in vertical profiling and lengthy exposure to subzero seawater.

  10. Snow and Ice Melt Flow Features on Devon Island, Nunavut, Arctic Canada as Possible Analogs for Recent Slope Flow Features on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Pascal; Cockell, Charles S.; Marinova, Margarita M.; McKay, Christopher P.; Rice, James W., Jr.

    2001-01-01

    Based on morphologic and contextual analogs from Devon Island, Arctic Canada, the recent martian slope flow features reported by Malin and Edgett are reinterpreted as being due not necessarily to groundwater seepage but possibly to snow or ice melt. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  11. Snow and Ice Melt Flow Features on Devon Island, Nunavut, Arctic Canada as Possible Analogs for Recent Slope Flow Features on Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Pascal; Cockell, Charles S.; Marinova, Margarita M.; McKay, Christopher P.; Rice, James W., Jr.

    2001-01-01

    Based on morphologic and contextual analogs from Devon Island, Arctic Canada, the recent martian slope flow features reported by Malin and Edgett are reinterpreted as being due not necessarily to groundwater seepage but possibly to snow or ice melt. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Funder, Svend

    2010-05-01

    blocked its landing). Our record shows that a period with less sea ice than now ended shortly after 6 kaBP. When the Independence I people (4450-3850 kaBP) came into the area, the sea ice conditions may have been similar to the present with land-fast ice for a good part of the year. The annual insolation was 2-3% higher than now, but the vegetation, especially in coastal areas, had deteriorated to Polar desert, as at present. This development continued, and when the second wave of immigrants came, The Independence II people (2900-2300 kaBP), both sea-ice conditions and insolation were similar to the present. Finally, when the last group of immigrants, the Thule people (AD1400-1500), reached the area had year-round land-fast ice. These results show that there is no clear correlation between climate change and human migration into Greenland, but it may have been the increase in sea ice after 6 kaBP that paved the ground for the peopling of high Arctic Canada and Greenland. The three North Greenland immigration-waves took place in a 'deteriorating' (cooling) climate, and evidence from lake sediments and ice coring show that the immigrants met an environment that was similar to today's - or even more harsh.

  13. Reorganization of ice sheet flow patterns in Arctic Canada and the mid-Pleistocene transition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Refsnider, Kurt A.; Miller, Gifford H.

    2010-07-01

    Evidence for the evolution of Laurentide Ice Sheet (LIS) basal thermal regime patterns during successive glaciations is poorly preserved in the geologic record. Here we explore a new approach to constrain the distribution of cold-based ice across central Baffin Island in the eastern Canadian Arctic over many glacial-interglacial cycles by combining till geochemistry and cosmogenic radionuclide (CRN) data. Parts of the landscaped with geomorphic evidence for limited glacial erosion are covered by till characterized by high chemical index of alteration (CIA) values and CRN concentrations requiring complicated burial-exposure histories. Till from regions scoured by glacial erosion have CIA values indistinguishable from local bedrock and CRN concentrations that can be explained by simple exposure following deglaciation. CRN modeling results based on these constraints suggest that the weathered tills were deposited by 1.9 to 1.2 Ma, and by that time the fiorded Baffin Island coastline must have developed close to its modern configuration as piracy of ice flow by the most efficient fiord systems resulted in a major shift in the basal thermal regime across the northeastern LIS. The resultant concentration of ice flow in fewer outlet systems may help explain the cause of the mid-Pleistocene transition from 41- to 100-kyr glacial cycles.

  14. The Eocene Thermal Maximum 2 (ETM-2) in a terrestrial section of the High Arctic: identification by U-Pb zircon ages of volcanic ashes and carbon isotope records of coal and amber (Stenkul Fiord, Ellesmere Island, Canada)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reinhardt, Lutz; von Gosen, Werner; Piepjohn, Karsten; Lückge, Andreas; Schmitz, Mark

    2017-04-01

    The Stenkul Fiord section on southern Ellesmere Island reveals largely fluvial clastic sediments with intercalated coal seams of the Margaret Formation of Late Paleocene/Early Eocene age according to palynology and vertebrate remains. Field studies in recent years and interpretative mapping of a high-resolution satellite image of the area southeast of Stenkul Fiord revealed that the clastic deposits consist of at least four sedimentary units (Units 1 to 4) separated by unconformities. Several centimeter-thin volcanic ash layers, recognized within coal layers and preserved as crandallite group minerals (Ca-bearing goyazite), suggest an intense volcanic ash fall activity. Based on new U-Pb zircon ages (ID-TIMS) of three ash layers, the volcanic ash fall took place at 53.7 Ma in the Early Eocene, i.e. within the Eocene Thermal Maximum 2 (ETM-2) hyperthermal. The ETM-2 is bracketed further by discrete negative excursions of carbon isotope records of both bulk coal and amber droplets collected from individual coal layers of the section. The identification of the ETM-2 hyperthermal provides a stratigraphic tie-point in the terrestrial Margaret Formation sediments enabling assignment of the lowermost sedimentary Unit 1 to the Late Paleocene-earliest Eocene, Unit 2 to the Early Eocene, whereas Unit 3 and 4 might be Early to Middle Eocene in age. Thus the timing of syn-sedimentary movements of the Eurekan deformation causal for the observed unconformities in the section can be studied and the positions of further hyperthermals like the PETM or the ETM-3 in the section can be identified in the future. The integration of structural studies, new U-Pb zircon ages, and different carbon isotope records provides a new stratigraphic framework for further examination of the unique Early Eocene flora and fauna preserved in this high-latitude outcrop.

  15. Water vapor intrusions into the High Arctic during winter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doyle, J. G.; Lesins, G.; Thackray, C. P.; Perro, C.; Nott, G. J.; Duck, T. J.; Damoah, R.; Drummond, J. R.

    2011-06-01

    The meridional transport of water vapor into the High Arctic, accompanied by dry enthalpy and clouds, impacts the surface radiative forcing. The evolution of one such moist intrusion over 9-11 February 2010 is presented. The event is analyzed using a unique blend of measurements including a new pan-Arctic retrieval of column water vapor from the Microwave Humidity Sounders, water vapor profiles from a Raman lidar and a ground-based microwave radiometer at the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL), in Eureka (80°N, 86°W), on Ellesmere Island in the Canadian High Arctic. A radiation model reveals the intrusion is associated with a 17 W m-2 average increase in downwelling longwave irradiance. Optically thin clouds, as observed by the lidar, contribute a further 20 W m-2 to the downwelling longwave irradiance at their peak. Intrusion events are shown to be a regular occurrence in the Arctic winter with implications for the understanding of the mechanisms driving Arctic Amplification.

  16. A new high resolution tidal model in the arctic ocean

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cancet, M.; Andersen, Ole Baltazar; Lyard, F.

    The Arctic Ocean is a challenging region for tidal modeling, because of its complex and not well-documented bathymetry, together combined with the intermittent presence of sea ice and the fact that the in situ tidal observations are rather scarce at such high latitudes. As a consequence......-growing maritime and industrial activities in this region. NOVELTIS and DTU Space have developed a regional, high-resolution tidal atlas in the Arctic Ocean, in the framework of the CryoSat Plus for Ocean (CP4O) ESA project. In particular, this atlas benefits from the assimilation of the most complete satellite...... for assimilation and validation. This paper presents the performances of this new regional tidal model in the Arctic Ocean, compared to the existing global tidal models....

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. High-Arctic plant-herbivore interactions under climate influence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Berg, Thomas B.; Schmidt, Niels Martin; 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...... production upon which the herbivores depend, and snow may be the most important climatic factor affecting the different trophic levels and the interactions between them. Hence, the spatio-temporal distribution of snow, as well as thawing events during winter, may have considerable effects on the herbivores...... 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...

  20. Backcountry Travel Emergencies in Arctic Canada: A Pilot Study in Public Health Surveillance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Stephanie K; Tabish, Taha B; Pollock, Nathaniel J; Young, T Kue

    2016-03-03

    Residents in the Canadian Arctic regularly travel in remote, backcountry areas. This can pose risks for injuries and death, and create challenges for emergency responders and health systems. We aimed to describe the extent and characteristics of media-reported backcountry travel emergencies in two Northern Canadian territories (Nunavut and Northwest Territories). A case-series of all known incidents between 2004 and 2013 was established by identifying events in an online search of two media outlets, Nunatsiaq News and Northern News Services. We identified 121 incidents; these most commonly involved young men, and death occurred in just over 25% of cases. The territories differed in the seasonal patterns. News media provides a partial source of data to estimate the extent and characteristics of backcountry emergencies. This information is needed to improve emergency preparedness and health system responsiveness in the Arctic.

  1. Transport of trace metals (Mn, Fe, Ni, Zn and Cd) in the western Arctic Ocean (Chukchi Sea and Canada Basin) in late summer 2012

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kondo, Yoshiko; Obata, Hajime.; Hioki, Nanako; Ooki, Atsushi; Nishino, Shigeto; Kikuchi, Takashi; Kuma, Kenshi

    2016-10-01

    generally controlled by the internal biogeochemical cycles of the ocean interior. Based on the findings of studies that have previously evaluated the concentration maxima of Ni, Zn and Cd within the halocline layer in the Canada Basin near the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, the elevated Ni, Zn and Cd concentrations in the halocline layer may extend across the Canada Basin from the Chukchi Sea shelf-break area. The determination coefficients for correlations with phosphate concentration varied between the concentrations of Ni, Zn and Cd, which suggest that the sources of these trace metals, such as sediments and sea-ice melting, affected their patterns of distributions differently. Our findings reveal the importance and impact of the halocline layer for the transport of trace metals in the western Arctic Ocean during the late summer. The existence of rich and various sources likely sustained the high concentrations of trace metals and their unique profiles in this region.

  2. Slope Edge Deformation and Permafrost Dynamics Along the Arctic Shelf Edge, Beaufort Sea, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paull, C. K.; Dallimore, S.; Caress, D. W.; Gwiazda, R.; Lundsten, E. M.; Anderson, K.; Riedel, M.; Melling, H.

    2015-12-01

    The shelf of the Canadian Beaufort Sea is underlain by relict offshore permafrost that formed in the long intervals of terrestrial exposure during glacial periods. At the shelf edge the permafrost thins rapidly and also warms. This area has a very distinct morphology that we attribute to both the formation and degradation of ice bearing permafrost. Positive relief features include circular to oval shaped topographic mounds, up to 10 m high and ~50 m in diameter which occur at a density of ~6 per km2. Intermixed are circular topographic depressions up to 20 m deep. This topography was investigated using an autonomous underwater vehicle that provides 1 m horizontal resolution bathymetry and chirp profiles, a remotely operated vehicle to document seafloor textures, and sediment cores to sample pore waters. A consistent down-core freshening at rates of 14 to 96 mM Cl- per meter was found in these pore waters near the shelf edge. Downward extrapolation of these trends indicates water with ≤335 mM Cl- should occur at 2.3 to 22.4 m sub-seafloor depths within this shelf edge deformation band. Pore water with 335 mM Cl- or less freezes at -1.4°C. As bottom water temperatures in this area are persistently (<-1.4°C) cold and ground ice was observed in some core samples, we interpret the volume changes associated with mound formation are in part due to pore water freezing. Thermal models (Taylor et al., 2014) predict brackish water along the shelf edge may be sourced in relict permafrost melting under the adjacent continental shelf. Buoyant brackish water is hypothesized to migrate along the base of the relict permafrost, to emerge at the shelf edge and then refreeze when it encounters the colder seafloor. Expansion generated by the formation of ice-bearing permafrost generates the positive relief mounds and ridges. The associated negative relief features may be related to permafrost dynamics also. Permafrost dynamics may have geohazard implications that are unique to the

  3. 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.

  4. Long-term experimentally deepened snow decreases growing-season respiration in a low- and high-arctic tundra ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semenchuk, Philipp R.; Christiansen, Casper T.; Grogan, Paul; Elberling, Bo; Cooper, Elisabeth J.

    2016-05-01

    Tundra soils store large amounts of carbon (C) that could be released through enhanced ecosystem respiration (ER) as the arctic warms. Over time, this may change the quantity and quality of available soil C pools, which in-turn may feedback and regulate ER responses to climate warming. Therefore, short-term increases in ER rates due to experimental warming may not be sustained over longer periods, as observed in other studies. One important aspect, which is often overlooked, is how climatic changes affecting ER in one season may carry-over and determine ER in following seasons. Using snow fences, we increased snow depth and thereby winter soil temperatures in a high-arctic site in Svalbard (78°N) and a low-arctic site in the Northwest Territories, Canada (64°N), for 5 and 9 years, respectively. Deepened snow enhanced winter ER while having negligible effect on growing-season soil temperatures and soil moisture. Growing-season ER at the high-arctic site was not affected by the snow treatment after 2 years. However, surprisingly, the deepened snow treatments significantly reduced growing-season ER rates after 5 years at the high-arctic site and after 8-9 years at the low-arctic site. We speculate that the reduction in ER rates, that became apparent only after several years of experimental manipulation, may, at least in part, be due to prolonged depletion of labile C substrate as a result of warmer soils over multiple cold seasons. Long-term changes in winter climate may therefore significantly influence annual net C balance not just because of increased wintertime C loss but also because of "legacy" effects on ER rates during the following growing seasons.

  5. Connecting climate signals with phytoplankton productivity and composition in a high Arctic fjord

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van de Poll, Willem

    2016-01-01

    Kongsfjorden is a high Arctic fjord on the West coast of Spitsbergen in a rapidly changing region that experiences both Arctic and sub-Arctic influences. This fjord has been subject to intense research since the 1980s. More recently, an effort was started by the AWI to collect daily physical, chemic

  6. High Levels of Molecular Chlorine found in the Arctic Atmosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liao, J.; Huey, L. G.; Liu, Z.; Tanner, D.; Cantrell, C. A.; Orlando, J. J.; Flocke, F. M.; Shepson, P. B.; Weinheimer, A. J.; Hall, S. R.; Beine, H.; Wang, Y.; Ingall, E. D.; Thompson, C. R.; Hornbrook, R. S.; Apel, E. C.; Fried, A.; Mauldin, L.; Smith, J. N.; Staebler, R. M.; Neuman, J. A.; Nowak, J. B.

    2014-12-01

    Chlorine radicals are a strong atmospheric oxidant, particularly in polar regions where levels of hydroxyl radicals can be quite low. In the atmosphere, chlorine radicals expedite the degradation of methane and tropospheric ozone and the oxidation of mercury to more toxic forms. Here, we present direct measurements of molecular chlorine levels in the Arctic marine boundary layer in Barrow, Alaska, collected in the spring of 2009 over a six-week period using chemical ionization mass spectrometry. We detected high levels of molecular chlorine of up to 400 pptv. Concentrations peaked in the early morning and late afternoon and fell to near-zero levels at night. Average daytime molecular chlorine levels were correlated with ozone concentrations, suggesting that sunlight and ozone are required for molecular chlorine formation. Using a time-dependent box model, we estimated that the chlorine radicals produced from the photolysis of molecular chlorine on average oxidized more methane than hydroxyl radicals and enhanced the abundance of short-lived peroxy radicals. Elevated hydroperoxyl radical levels, in turn, promoted the formation of hypobromous acid, which catalyzed mercury oxidation and the breakdown of tropospheric ozone. Therefore, we propose that molecular chlorine exerts a significant effect on the atmospheric chemistry in the Arctic. While the formation mechanisms of molecular chlorine are not yet understood, the main potential sources of chlorine include snowpack, sea salt, and sea ice. There is recent evidence of molecular halogen (Br2 and Cl2) formation in the Arctic snowpack. The coverage and composition of the snow may control halogen chemistry in the Arctic. Changes of sea ice and snow cover in the changing climate may affect air-snow-ice interaction and have a significant impact on the levels of radicals, ozone, mercury and methane in the Arctic troposphere.

  7. Cryptosporidium hominis Is a Newly Recognized Pathogen in the Arctic Region of Nunavik, Canada: Molecular Characterization of an Outbreak.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karine Thivierge

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Cryptosporidium is a leading cause of childhood diarrhea in low-resource settings, and has been repeatedly associated with impaired physical and cognitive development. In May 2013, an outbreak of diarrhea caused by Cryptosporidium hominis was identified in the Arctic region of Nunavik, Quebec. Human cryptosporidiosis transmission was previously unknown in this region, and very few previous studies have reported it elsewhere in the Arctic. We report clinical, molecular, and epidemiologic details of a multi-village Cryptosporidium outbreak in the Canadian Arctic.We investigated the occurrence of cryptosporidiosis using a descriptive study of cases with onset between April 2013 and April 2014. Cases were defined as Nunavik inhabitants of any age presenting with diarrhea of any duration, in whom Cryptosporidium oocysts were detected by stool microscopy in a specialised reference laboratory. Cryptosporidium was identified in stool from 51 of 283 individuals. The overall annual incidence rate (IR was 420 / 100,000 inhabitants. The IR was highest among children aged less than 5 years (1290 /100,000 persons. Genetic subtyping for stool specimens from 14/51 cases was determined by DNA sequence analysis of the 60 kDa glycoprotein (gp60 gene. Sequences aligned with C. hominis subtype Id in all cases. No common food or water source of infection was identified.In this first observed outbreak of human cryptosporidiosis in this Arctic region, the high IR seen is cause for concern about the possible long-term effects on growth and development of children in Inuit communities, who face myriad other challenges such as overcrowding and food-insecurity. The temporal and geographic distribution of cases, as well as the identification of C. hominis subtype Id, suggest anthroponotic rather than zoonotic transmission. Barriers to timely diagnosis delayed the recognition of human cryptosporidiosis in this remote setting.

  8. A new high resolution tidal model in the arctic ocean

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cancet, M.; Andersen, Ole Baltazar; Lyard, F.

    The Arctic Ocean is a challenging region for tidal modeling, because of its complex and not well-documented bathymetry, together combined with the intermittent presence of sea ice and the fact that the in situ tidal observations are rather scarce at such high latitudes. As a consequence, the accu......The Arctic Ocean is a challenging region for tidal modeling, because of its complex and not well-documented bathymetry, together combined with the intermittent presence of sea ice and the fact that the in situ tidal observations are rather scarce at such high latitudes. As a consequence...... of the tides improves the quality of the high latitudes altimeter sea surface heights and of all derived products, such as the altimetry-derived geostrophic currents, the mean sea surface and the mean dynamic topography. In addition, accurate tidal models are highly strategic information for ever......-growing maritime and industrial activities in this region. NOVELTIS and DTU Space have developed a regional, high-resolution tidal atlas in the Arctic Ocean, in the framework of the CryoSat Plus for Ocean (CP4O) ESA project. In particular, this atlas benefits from the assimilation of the most complete satellite...

  9. Large surface radiative forcing from topographic blowing snow residuals measured in the High Arctic at Eureka

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Lesins

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Ice crystals, also known as diamond dust, are suspended in the boundary layer air under clear sky conditions during most of the Arctic winter in Northern Canada. Occasionally ice crystal events can produce significantly thick layers with optical depths in excess of 2.0 even in the absence of liquid water clouds. Four case studies of high optical depth ice crystal events at Eureka in the Nunavut Territory of Canada during the winter of 2006/07 are presented. They show that the measured ice crystal surface infrared downward radiative forcing ranged from 8 to 36 W m−2 in the wavelength band from 5.6 to 20 μm for 532 nm optical depths ranging from 0.2 to 1.7. MODIS infrared and visible images and the operational radiosonde wind profile were used to show that these high optical depth events were caused by surface snow being blown off 600 to 800 m high mountain ridges about 20 to 30 km North-West of Eureka and advected by the winds towards Eureka as they settled towards the ground within the highly stable boundary layer. This work presents the first study that demonstrates the important role that surrounding topography plays in determining the occurrence of high optical depth ice crystal events from residual blowing snow that becomes a source of boundary layer ice crystals distinct from the classical diamond dust phenomenon.

  10. The Submarine -- The Key to Winning an Arctic Conflict

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-05-15

    Cold Horizons: Arctic Maritime Security Challenges.” 17 Franklyn Griffiths, Rob Huebert, and P. Whitney Lackenbauer, Canada and the Changing Arctic... Franklyn , Rob Huebert, and P. Whitney Lackenbauer. Canada and the Changing Arctic: Sovereignty, Security, and Stewardship. Waterloo, Ontario

  11. Pre-industrial and recent (1970-2010) atmospheric deposition of sulfate and mercury in snow on southern Baffin Island, Arctic Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zdanowicz, Christian; Kruemmel, Eva; Lean, David; Poulain, Alexandre; Kinnard, Christophe; Yumvihoze, Emmanuel; Chen, JiuBin; Hintelmann, Holger

    2015-03-15

    Sulfate (SO4(2-)) and mercury (Hg) are airborne pollutants transported to the Arctic where they can affect properties of the atmosphere and the health of marine or terrestrial ecosystems. Detecting trends in Arctic Hg pollution is challenging because of the short period of direct observations, particularly of actual deposition. Here, we present an updated proxy record of atmospheric SO4(2-) and a new 40-year record of total Hg (THg) and monomethyl Hg (MeHg) deposition developed from a firn core (P2010) drilled from Penny Ice Cap, Baffin Island, Canada. The updated P2010 record shows stable mean SO4(2-) levels over the past 40 years, which is inconsistent with observations of declining atmospheric SO4(2-) or snow acidity in the Arctic during the same period. A sharp THg enhancement in the P2010 core ca 1991 is tentatively attributed to the fallout from the eruption of the Icelandic volcano Hekla. Although MeHg accumulation on Penny Ice Cap had remained constant since 1970, THg accumulation increased after the 1980s. This increase is not easily explained by changes in snow accumulation, marine aerosol inputs or air mass trajectories; however, a causal link may exist with the declining sea-ice cover conditions in the Baffin Bay sector. The ratio of THg accumulation between pre-industrial times (reconstructed from archived ice cores) and the modern industrial era is estimated at between 4- and 16-fold, which is consistent with estimates from Arctic lake sediment cores. The new P2010 THg record is the first of its kind developed from the Baffin Island region of the eastern Canadian Arctic and one of very few such records presently available in the Arctic. As such, it may help to bridge the knowledge gap linking direct observation of gaseous Hg in the Arctic atmosphere and actual net deposition and accumulation in various terrestrial media.

  12. Bioluminescence as an ecological factor during high Arctic polar night

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cronin, Heather A.; Cohen, Jonathan H.; Berge, Jørgen; Johnsen, Geir; Moline, Mark A.

    2016-11-01

    Bioluminescence commonly influences pelagic trophic interactions at mesopelagic depths. Here we characterize a vertical gradient in structure of a generally low species diversity bioluminescent community at shallower epipelagic depths during the polar night period in a high Arctic fjord with in situ bathyphotometric sampling. Bioluminescence potential of the community increased with depth to a peak at 80 m. Community composition changed over this range, with an ecotone at 20–40 m where a dinoflagellate-dominated community transitioned to dominance by the copepod Metridia longa. Coincident at this depth was bioluminescence exceeding atmospheric light in the ambient pelagic photon budget, which we term the bioluminescence compensation depth. Collectively, we show a winter bioluminescent community in the high Arctic with vertical structure linked to attenuation of atmospheric light, which has the potential to influence pelagic ecology during the light-limited polar night.

  13. 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.

  14. Seismic reflection and refraction data acquired in Canada Basin, Northwind Ridge and Northwind Basin, Arctic Ocean in 1988, 1992 and 1993

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grantz, Arthur; Hart, Patrick E.; May, Steven D.

    2004-01-01

    Seismic reflection and refraction data were collected in generally ice-covered waters of the Canada Basin and the eastern part of the Chukchi Continental Borderland of the Amerasia Basin, Arctic Ocean, during the late summers of 1988, 1992, and 1993. The data were acquired from a Polar class icebreaker, the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Polar Star, using a seismic reflection system designed by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The northernmost data extend to 78? 48' N latitude. In 1988, 155 km of reflection data were acquired with a prototype system consisting of a single 195 cubic inch air gun seismic source and a two-channel hydrophone streamer with a 150-m active section. In 1992 and 1993, 500 and 1,900 km, respectively, of seismic reflection profile data were acquired with an improved six air gun, 674 to 1303 cubic inch tuned seismic source array and the same two-channel streamer. In 1993, a 12-channel streamer with a 150-m active section was used to record five of the reflection lines and one line was acquired using a three air gun, 3,000 cubic inch source. All data were recorded with a DFS-V digital seismic recorder. Processed sections feature high quality vertical incidence images to more than 6 km of sub-bottom penetration in the Canada Basin. Refraction data were acquired with U.S. Navy sonobuoys recorded simultaneously with the seismic reflection profiles. In 1988 eight refraction profiles were recorded with the single air gun, and in 1992 and 1993 a total of 47 refraction profiles were recorded with the six air gun array. The sonobuoy refraction records, with offsets up to 35 km, provide acoustic velocity information to complement the short-offset reflection data. The report includes trackline maps showing the location of the data, as well as both digital data files (SEG-Y) and images of all of the profiles.

  15. Dietary adequacy of vitamin D and calcium among Inuit and Inuvialuit women of child-bearing age in Arctic Canada: a growing concern.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fariba Kolahdooz

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Arctic populations are at an increased risk of vitamin D inadequacy due to geographic latitude and a nutrition transition. This study aimed to assess the adequacy of dietary vitamin D and calcium among women of child-bearing age in Arctic Canada. METHODS: This study collected data from 203 randomly selected women of child-bearing age (19-44 years in Nunavut and the Northwest Territories of Arctic Canada. Cross-sectional surveys using a validated quantitative food frequency questionnaire were analysed to determine the dietary adequacy of vitamin D and calcium and summarize the top foods contributing to vitamin D and calcium intake among traditional food eaters (TFE and non-traditional food eaters (NTFE. RESULTS: The response rate was between 69-93% depending on the community sampled. Mean BMIs for both TFE and NTFE were above the normal range. Traditional food eaters had a significantly higher median vitamin D intake compared with non-traditional eaters (TFE=5.13 ± 5.34 µg/day; NTFE=3.5 ± 3.22 µg/day, p=0·004. The majority of women (87% were below the Estimated Average Requirements (EAR for vitamin D. Despite adequate median daily calcium intake in both TFE (1,299 ± 798 mg/day and NTFE (992 ± 704 mg/day; p=0.0005, 27% of the study population fell below the EAR for calcium. Dairy products contributed the most to intake of vitamin D (TFE=30.7%; NTFE=39.1% and calcium (TFE=25.5%; NTFE=34.5%. CONCLUSIONS: Inadequate dietary vitamin D intake is evident among Inuit and Inuvialuit women of child-bearing age in Arctic Canada. Promotion of nutrient-rich sources of traditional foods, supplementation protocols and/or expanded food fortification should be considered to address this nutrition concern.

  16. 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

  17. Congruent responses to weather variability in high arctic herbivores.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stien, Audun; Ims, Rolf A; Albon, Steve D; Fuglei, Eva; Irvine, R Justin; Ropstad, Erik; Halvorsen, Odd; Langvatn, Rolf; Loe, Leif Egil; Veiberg, Vebjørn; Yoccoz, Nigel G

    2012-12-23

    Assessing the role of weather in the dynamics of wildlife populations is a pressing task in the face of rapid environmental change. Rodents and ruminants are abundant herbivore species in most Arctic ecosystems, many of which are experiencing particularly rapid climate change. Their different life-history characteristics, with the exception of their trophic position, suggest that they should show different responses to environmental variation. Here we show that the only mammalian herbivores on the Arctic islands of Svalbard, reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) and sibling voles (Microtus levis), exhibit strong synchrony in population parameters. This synchrony is due to rain-on-snow events that cause ground ice and demonstrates that climate impacts can be similarly integrated and expressed in species with highly contrasting life histories. The finding suggests that responses of wildlife populations to climate variability and change might be more consistent in Polar regions than elsewhere owing to the strength of the climate impact and the simplicity of the ecosystem.

  18. 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...

  19. Observations of atmospheric chemical deposition to high Arctic snow

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macdonald, Katrina M.; Sharma, Sangeeta; Toom, Desiree; Chivulescu, Alina; Hanna, Sarah; Bertram, Allan K.; Platt, Andrew; Elsasser, Mike; Huang, Lin; Tarasick, David; Chellman, Nathan; McConnell, Joseph R.; Bozem, Heiko; Kunkel, Daniel; Duan Lei, Ying; Evans, Greg J.; Abbatt, Jonathan P. D.

    2017-05-01

    Rapidly rising temperatures and loss of snow and ice cover have demonstrated the unique vulnerability of the high Arctic to climate change. There are major uncertainties in modelling the chemical depositional and scavenging processes of Arctic snow. To that end, fresh snow samples collected on average every 4 days at Alert, Nunavut, from September 2014 to June 2015 were analyzed for black carbon, major ions, and metals, and their concentrations and fluxes were reported. Comparison with simultaneous measurements of atmospheric aerosol mass loadings yields effective deposition velocities that encompass all processes by which the atmospheric species are transferred to the snow. It is inferred from these values that dry deposition is the dominant removal mechanism for several compounds over the winter while wet deposition increased in importance in the fall and spring, possibly due to enhanced scavenging by mixed-phase clouds. Black carbon aerosol was the least efficiently deposited species to the snow.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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

  3. 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....

  4. Vertical scales and dynamics of eddies in the Arctic Ocean's Canada Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Mengnan; Timmermans, Mary-Louise

    2015-12-01

    A decade of moored measurements from the Arctic Ocean's northwestern Beaufort Gyre (collected as a component of the Beaufort Gyre Exploration Project) are analyzed to examine the range of mesoscale eddies over the water column and the dynamical processes that set eddy vertical scales. A total of 58 eddies were identified in the moored record, all anticyclones with azimuthal velocities ranging from 10 to 43 cm/s. These are divided into three classes based on core depths. Shallow eddies (core depths around 120 m) are shown to be vertically confined by the strong stratification of the halocline; typical thicknesses are around 100 m. Deep eddies (core depths around 1200 m) are much taller (thicknesses around 1300 m) owing to the weaker stratification at depth, consistent with a previous study. Eddies centered around mid-depths all have two cores (vertically aligned and separated in depth) characterized by velocity maxima and anomalous temperature and salinity properties. One core is located at the base of the halocline (around 200 m depth) and the other at the depth of the Atlantic Water layer (around 400 m depth). These double-core eddies have vertical scales between those of the shallow and deep eddies. The strongly decreasing stratification in their depth range motivates a derivation for the quasi-geostrophic adjustment of a nonuniformly stratified water column to a potential vorticity anomaly. The result aids in interpreting the dynamics and origins of the double-core eddies, providing insight into transport across a major water mass front separating Canadian and Eurasian Water.

  5. Newly identified "Tunnunik" impact structure, Prince Albert Peninsula, northwestern Victoria Island, Arctic Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dewing, Keith; Pratt, Brian R.; Hadlari, Thomas; Brent, Tom; BÉDard, Jean; Rainbird, Robert H.

    2013-02-01

    Regional geological mapping of the glaciated surface of northwestern Victoria Island in the western Canadian Arctic revealed an anomalous structure in otherwise flat-lying Neoproterozoic and lower Paleozoic carbonate rocks, located south of Richard Collinson Inlet. The feature is roughly circular in plan view, approximately 25 km in diameter, and characterized by quaquaversal dips of approximately 45°, decreasing laterally. The core of the feature also exhibits local vertical dips, low-angle reverse faults, and drag folds. Although brecciation was not observed, shatter cones are pervasive in all lithologies in the central area, including 723 Ma old dikes that penetrate Neoproterozoic limestones. Their abundance decreases distally, and none was observed in surrounding, horizontally bedded strata. This circular structure is interpreted as a deeply eroded meteorite impact crater of the complex type, and the dipping strata as the remnants of the central uplift. The variation in orientation and shape of shatter cones point to variably oriented stresses with the passage of the shock wave, possibly related to the presence of pore water in the target strata as well as rock type and lithological heterogeneities, especially bed thickness. Timing of impact is poorly constrained. The youngest rocks affected are Late Ordovician (approximately 450 Ma) and the impact structure is mantled by undisturbed postglacial sediments. Regional, hydrothermal dolomitization of the Ordovician limestones, possibly in the Late Devonian (approximately 360 Ma), took place before the impact, and widespread WSW-ENE-trending normal faults of probable Early Cretaceous age (approximately 130 Ma) apparently cross-cut the impact structure.

  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. 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.

  8. Research with Arctic peoples

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Smith, H Sally; Bjerregaard, Peter; Chan, Hing Man

    2006-01-01

    Arctic peoples are spread over eight countries and comprise 3.74 million residents, of whom 9% are indigenous. The Arctic countries include Canada, Finland, Greenland (Denmark), Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the United States. Although Arctic peoples are very diverse, there are a variety of...

  9. Importance of open marine waters to the enrichment of total mercury and monomethylmercury in lichens in the Canadian High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    St Pierre, K A; St Louis, V L; Kirk, J L; Lehnherr, I; Wang, S; La Farge, C

    2015-05-19

    Caribou, which rely on lichens as forage, are a dietary source of monomethylmercury (MMHg) to many of Canada's Arctic Aboriginal people. However, little is understood about the sources of MMHg to lichens in the High Arctic. We quantified MMHg, total mercury (THg) and other chemical parameters (e.g., marine and crustal elements, δ(13)C, δ(15)N, organic carbon, calcium carbonate) in lichen and soil samples collected along transects extending from the coast on Bathurst and Devon islands, Nunavut, to determine factors driving lichen MMHg and THg concentrations in the High Arctic. Lichen MMHg and THg concentrations ranged from 1.41 to 17.1 ng g(-1) and from 36.0 to 361 ng g(-1), respectively. Both were highly enriched over concentrations in underlying soils, indicating a predominately atmospheric source of Hg in lichens. However, MMHg and THg enrichment at coastal sites on Bathurst Island was far greater than on Devon Island. We suggest that this variability can be explained by the proximity of the Bathurst Island transect to several polynyas, which promote enhanced Hg deposition to adjacent landscapes through various biogeochemical processes. This study is the first to clearly show a strong marine influence on MMHg inputs to coastal terrestrial food webs with implications for MMHg accumulation in caribou and the health of the people who depend on them as part of a traditional diet.

  10. Slow recovery of High Arctic heath communities from nitrogen enrichment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Street, Lorna E; Burns, Nancy R; Woodin, Sarah J

    2015-04-01

    Arctic ecosystems are strongly nutrient limited and exhibit dramatic responses to nitrogen (N) enrichment, the reversibility of which is unknown. This study uniquely assesses the potential for tundra heath to recover from N deposition and the influence of phosphorus (P) availability on recovery. We revisited an experiment in Svalbard, established in 1991, in which N was applied at rates representing atmospheric N deposition in Europe (10 and 50 kg N ha(-1)  yr(-1) ; 'low' and 'high', respectively) for 3-8 yr. We investigated whether significant effects on vegetation composition and ecosystem nutrient status persisted up to 18 yr post-treatment. Although the tundra heath is no longer N saturated, N treatment effects persist and are strongly P-dependent. Vegetation was more resilient to N where no P was added, although shrub cover is still reduced in low-N plots. Where P was also added (5 kg P ha(-1)  yr(-1) ), there are still effects of low N on community composition and nutrient dynamics. High N, with and without P, has many lasting impacts. Importantly, N + P has caused dramatically increased moss abundance, which influences nutrient dynamics. Our key finding is that Arctic ecosystems are slow to recover from even small N inputs, particularly where P is not limiting.

  11. 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.

  12. 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...

  13. 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.

  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. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. High levels of molecular chlorine in the Arctic atmosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liao, Jin; Huey, L. Gregory; Liu, Zhen; Tanner, David J.; Cantrell, Chris A.; Orlando, John J.; Flocke, Frank M.; Shepson, Paul B.; Weinheimer, Andrew J.; Hall, Samuel R.; Ullmann, Kirk; Beine, Harry J.; Wang, Yuhang; Ingall, Ellery D.; Stephens, Chelsea R.; Hornbrook, Rebecca S.; Apel, Eric C.; Riemer, Daniel; Fried, Alan; Mauldin, Roy L.; Smith, James N.; Staebler, Ralf M.; Neuman, J. Andrew; Nowak, John B.

    2014-02-01

    Chlorine radicals can function as a strong atmospheric oxidant, particularly in polar regions, where levels of hydroxyl radicals are low. In the atmosphere, chlorine radicals expedite the degradation of methane and tropospheric ozone, and the oxidation of mercury to more toxic forms. Here we present direct measurements of molecular chlorine levels in the Arctic marine boundary layer in Barrow, Alaska, collected in the spring of 2009 over a six-week period using chemical ionization mass spectrometry. We report high levels of molecular chlorine, of up to 400 pptv. Concentrations peaked in the early morning and late afternoon, and fell to near-zero levels at night. Average daytime molecular chlorine levels were correlated with ozone concentrations, suggesting that sunlight and ozone are required for molecular chlorine formation. Using a time-dependent box model, we estimate that the chlorine radicals produced from the photolysis of molecular chlorine oxidized more methane than hydroxyl radicals, on average, and enhanced the abundance of short-lived peroxy radicals. Elevated hydroperoxyl radical levels, in turn, promoted the formation of hypobromous acid, which catalyses mercury oxidation and the breakdown of tropospheric ozone. We therefore suggest that molecular chlorine exerts a significant effect on the atmospheric chemistry of the Arctic.

  18. Hydrological role of large icings within glacierized Sub-Arctic watershed: case study in Upper Duke River valley, Yukon, Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chesnokova, Anna; Baraer, Michel

    2017-04-01

    Sub-Arctic glacierized catchments are complex hydrological systems of paramount importance for water resources management as well as for various ecosystem services. Such systems host many climate-sensitive water sources. Among those, icing is an important component as they provide substantial amount of water during the melt season. Moreover, collecting water of different origins during their formation, icings can be seen as an indicator for different water sources and water pathways that remain active during the freezing period. The present study focuses on genesis and dynamics of large icings within both proglacial field and neighboring alpine meadow in Upper Duke River valley, Yukon, in order to i) provide new insights on water sources and pathways within Sub-Arctic glacierized watersheds, and ii) to quantify contribution of icings to the total runoff of those hydrological systems. A multi-approach technique was applied to cope with the high hydrological complexity met in Sub-Arctic mountainous environments. Time series of positions of large river icings within the study area were obtained using Landsat images for the period 1980-2016. Four time-lapse cameras (TLC) were installed in the watershed targeting two proglacial fields and two alpine meadows in order to monitor icing dynamics all year long. Meteorological data was measured by an Automatic Weather Station in the main valley. In addition air temperature and relative humidity were measured at the location of each TLC. Finally, four icings along the Duke River valley, as well as 2 icings in its main tributary were sampled for stable water isotopes, solutes concentrations and total organic carbon. In addition, samples of freezing exclusion precipitates from icing surfaces were taken. Remote sensing data shows the persistence of large icing complexes in the area during last 30 years: icing within proglacial field appear with almost constant position relative to main glacier tongue on the 30 years long period

  19. Does Funding for Arctic Research Align with Research Priorities and Policy Needs? Trends in the USA, Canada and Europe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murray, M. S.; Ibarguchi, G.; Rajdev, V.

    2015-12-01

    Over the past twenty years, increasing awareness and understanding of changes in the Arctic system, the stated desires of Arctic Peoples to be engaged in the research process, and a growing international interest in the region's resources have informed various stakeholders to undertake many Arctic science planning activities. Some examples of science planning include priority-setting for research, knowledge translation, stakeholder engagement, improved coordination, and international collaboration. The International Study of Arctic Change recently initiated an analysis of the extent to which alignment exists among stated science priorities, recognized societal needs, and funding patterns of the major North American and European agencies. In this paper, we present a decade of data on international funding patterns and data on two decades of science planning. We discuss whether funding patterns reflect the priority research questions and identified needs for information that are articulated in a myriad of Arctic research planning documents. The alignment in many areas remains poor, bringing into question the purpose of large-scale science planning if it does not lead to funding of those priorities identified by Arctic stakeholder communities (scientists, Arctic Peoples, planners, policy makers, the private sector, and others).

  20. 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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mastepanov, M.; Sigsgaard, C.; Tagesson, T.;

    2013-01-01

    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...... 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...

  2. Documenting PyroCb Development on High-Intensity Boreal Fires: Implications for the Arctic Atmosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stocks, B. J.; Fromm, M. D.; Servranckx, R.; Lindsey, D.

    2007-12-01

    energy release rate of ~45,000 kW/m. This constitutes a typical high-intensity boreal crown fire, common across northern Canada every summer, and often capable of producing independent pyroconvection. The June 25 blowup was monitored using OMI AI, CALIPSO, Aqua MODIS, AVHRR and GOES satellite imagery, and these measurements validated the predicted fire behavior, including the development of a convection column that rose 10-11 km and injected smoke within the UTLS. Over subsequent days this smoke spread to Arctic latitudes (70-80 degrees N).

  3. High Arctic Paraglacial Coastal Evolution in Northern Billefjorden, Svalbard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strzelecki, Matt; Long, Antony; Lloyd, Jerry

    2013-04-01

    Most sediment budget studies in paraglacial, High Arctic, environments have focussed attention on quantifying sediment fluxes in glacial and fluvial catchments. In contrast, little attention has been paid to the functioning of the paraglacial coastal zone with existing models of coastal change based on relict systems developed in mid latitude settings. The pristine coasts of Spitsbergen provided a superb opportunity to quantify how High Arctic coasts are respondingto rapid climate warming and associated paraglacial landscape transformation. In this paper we reconstruct the development of the paraglacial coasts in Petuniabukta and Adolfbukta, the northernmost bays of Billefjorden, central Spitsbergen. The study area is characterized by a sheltered location, a semi-arid, sub-polar climate, limited wave fetch and tidal range, and rapid retreat of all surrounding glaciers. Using a combination of geomorphological, sedimentological, remote sensing and dating methods, we study the processes controlling the coastal zone development over annual, century and millennial timescales. Interannual changes observed between 2008-2010 show that gravel barriers in the study area are resilient to the impacts of local storms and the operation of sea-ice processes. In general, the processes controlling the short-term barrier development often operate in the opposite direction to the landforming patterns visible in the longer-term evolution. Over multi-decadal timescales, since the end of the Little Ice Age. we observe drammatic changes in sediment flux and coastal response under an interval characterised by a warming climate, retreating local ice masses, a shortened winter sea-ice season and melting permafrost. A new approach of dating juvenile mollusc found in uplifted marine barriers led to the better understating of the Late Holocene evolution of a Petuniabukta coastal zone and its reaction to deglaciation, glacioisostatic uplift and sea-level fluctuations. We propose a new

  4. A Pliocene chronostratigraphy for the Canadian western and high Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gosse, John; Braschi, Lea; Rybczynski, Natalia; Lakeman, Thomas; Zimmerman, Susan; Finkel, Robert; Barendregt, Rene; Matthews, John

    2014-05-01

    The Beaufort Formation comprises an extensive (1200 km long, more than 1 km thick) clastic wedge that formed during the Pliocene along the western Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA). In the western Arctic, the Ballast Brook (BB) site on Banks Is. exposes more than 20 km of section through the sandy and pebble sandy braided stream deposits with detrital organic beds. Farther north, Beaufort Fm fluvial and estuarine facies have been examined on Meighen Is. In the high Arctic, high terrace gravels (450 m high surface) at the Fyles Leaf Bed (FLB) and Beaver Pond (BP) sites on Ellesmere Is. are not considered part of the Beaufort Fm but have similar paleoenvironmental records. Fossil plant and faunal material from these sediments is often very well preserved and provides evidence of a boreal-type forest and peatlands. The BP fossil site preserves the remains of fossil vertebrates including fish, frog, horse, beaver, deerlet, and black bear, consistent with a boreal type forest habitat. The FLB site has recently yielded the first fossil evidence for a High Arctic camel, identified with the help of collagen fingerprinting from a fragmentary limb bone (tibia). Paleoenvironmental reconstruction of the Ellesmere sites has yielded a Mean Annual Temperature of between 14 to 22 degrees Celsius warmer than today. Minimum cosmogenic nuclide burial ages of 3.4 and 3.8 Ma obtained for the BP and FLB sites, respectively, are consistent with vertebrate and floral biostratigraphic evidence. The paleoenvironmental records from the Beaufort Fm in the western CAA sites have revealed a similar ecosystem with noteworthy differences in MAT and perhaps seasonality. New burial ages from Meighen Is. indicate a maximum age of 6.1 Ma, consistent with yet much older than previous age estimates, but supportive of paleomagnetic and biostratigraphy at the same location. The age differences may account for some of the interpreted variations in paleoenvironments, in addition to spatial differences in

  5. Wisconsinan and early Holocene glacial dynamics of Cumberland Peninsula, Baffin Island, Arctic Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margreth, Annina; Gosse, John C.; Dyke, Arthur S.

    2017-07-01

    Three glacier systems-an ice sheet with a large marine-based ice stream, an ice cap, and an alpine glacier complex-coalesced on Cumberland Peninsula during the Late Wisconsinan. We combine high-resolution mapping of glacial deposits with new cosmogenic nuclide and radiocarbon age determinations to constrain the history and dynamics of each system. During the Middle Wisconsinan (Oxygen Isotope Stage 3, OIS-3) the Cumberland Sound Ice Stream of the Laurentide Ice Sheet retreated well back into Cumberland Sound and the alpine ice retreated at least to fiord-head positions, a more significant recession than previously documented. The advance to maximal OIS-2 ice positions beyond the mouth of Cumberland Sound and beyond most stretches of coastline remains undated. Partial preservation of an over-ridden OIS-3 glaciomarine delta in a fiord-side position suggests that even fiord ice was weakly erosive in places. Moraines formed during deglaciation represent stillstands and re-advances during three major cold events: H-1 (14.6 ka), Younger Dryas (12.9-11.7 ka), and Cockburn (9.5 ka). Distinctly different responses of the three glacial systems are evident, with the alpine system responding most sensitively to Bølling-Allerød warming whereas the larger systems retreated mainly during Pre-Boreal warming. While the larger ice masses were mainly influenced by internal dynamics, the smaller alpine glacier system responded sensitively to local climate effects. Asymmetrical recession of the alpine glacier complex indicates topoclimatic control on deglaciation and perhaps migration of the accumulation area toward moisture source.

  6. Uranium isotopes (U-234/U-238) in rivers of the Yukon Basin (Alaska and Canada) as an aid in identifying water sources, with implications for monitoring hydrologic change in arctic regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kraemer, Thomas F.; Brabets, Timothy P.

    2012-01-01

    The ability to detect hydrologic variation in large arctic river systems is of major importance in understanding and predicting effects of climate change in high-latitude environments. Monitoring uranium isotopes (234U and 238U) in river water of the Yukon River Basin of Alaska and northwestern Canada (2001–2005) has enhanced the ability to identify water sources to rivers, as well as detect flow changes that have occurred over the 5-year study. Uranium isotopic data for the Yukon River and major tributaries (the Porcupine and Tanana rivers) identify several sources that contribute to river flow, including: deep groundwater, seasonally frozen river-valley alluvium groundwater, and high-elevation glacial melt water. The main-stem Yukon River exhibits patterns of uranium isotopic variation at several locations that reflect input from ice melt and shallow groundwater in the spring, as well as a multi-year pattern of increased variability in timing and relative amount of water supplied from higher elevations within the basin. Results of this study demonstrate both the utility of uranium isotopes in revealing sources of water in large river systems and of incorporating uranium isotope analysis in long-term monitoring of arctic river systems that attempt to assess the effects of climate change.

  7. Suspended sediment in a high-Arctic river

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ladegaard-Pedersen, Pernille; Sigsgaard, Charlotte; Kroon, Aart;

    2016-01-01

    Quantifying fluxes of water, sediment and dissolved compounds through Arctic rivers is important for linking the glacial, terrestrial and marine ecosystems and to quantify the impact of a warming climate. The quantification of fluxes is not trivial. This study uses a 8-years data set (2005......-1 and 61,000±16,000ty-1. Extreme events with high discharges had a mean duration of 1day. The average suspended sediment flux during extreme events was 17,000±5000ty-1, which constitutes a year-to-year variation of 20-37% of the total annual flux. The most accurate sampling strategy was bi......-agreements and accuracies variations in the measured suspended sediment concentrations. The discharge weighted mean...

  8. 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

  9. Archean Lithosphere Beneath Arctic Canada: Lu-Hf Isotope Systematics for Kimberlite-Hosted Garnet-Peridotites From Somerset Island

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidberger, S. S.; Simonetti, A.; Francis, D.; Gariepy, C.

    2001-05-01

    Knowledge of the age of lithospheric mantle underlying the continents provides valuable constraints for the timing of formation and stabilization of Archean cratons. This study reports Lu-Hf isotopic data for garnet-peridotites, and their constituent garnets, from the Nikos kimberlite (100 Ma) on Somerset Island in the Canadian Arctic obtained using a Micromass IsoProbe multicollector inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer (MC-ICP-MS) at GEOTOP-UQAM. The low temperature peridotites (1100 C; 160-190 km) and their 176Hf/177Hf(0.1Ga) isotopic compositions (0.28265-0.28333; \\epsilonHf(0.1Ga)=-2 to +22) are less radiogenic than those of the shallow xenoliths. A Lu-Hf isochron for six peridotites yields a mid Archean age of 3.4\\pm0.3 Ga and an initial 176Hf/177Hf ratio of 0.28101\\pm24. The remaining peridotites (n=9), in contrast, are characterized by extremely high (+35) initial \\epsilonHf(3.4Ga) values, which correlate negatively with their 176Lu/177Hf ratios, suggesting addition of Hf as a result of metasomatic interaction with the host kimberlite. The garnets from the low temperature (3.4 Ga old) peridotites are characterized by high 176Lu/177Hf ratios and define an errorchron age of 1.4\\pm0.2 Ga, which may reflect re-equilibration of Hf during kimberlite magmatism.

  10. 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.

  11. Legacy and new halogenated persistent organic pollutants in polar bears from a contamination hotspot in the Arctic, Hudson Bay Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Letcher, R J; Morris, A D; Dyck, M; Sverko, E; Reiner, E J; Blair, D A D; Chu, S G; Shen, L

    2017-08-10

    A large and complex suite of 295 legacy and new halogenated persistent organic pollutants (POPs) were investigated in fat or liver tissue samples of polar bears collected in 2013-2014 from Southern (SHB) and Western (WHB) subpopulations of the Canadian Arctic contaminants hotspot of Hudson Bay. A total of 210 POPs were detected and/or quantifiable with some frequency in all fat or liver samples. POP profile and concentration differences were investigated both within (e.g. age and sex) and between the two subpopulations. Two time-point comparisons were made relative to POPs reported for Hudson Bay polar bears harvested in 2007-2008. ΣPolychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) concentrations at both time points were the most concentrated of the POP groups, and were spatially uniform with no detectable influence of sex or age, as were concentrations of the dominant congener CB153. ΣChlordanes (ΣCHLs, 74-79% oxychlordane) and the Σperfluoroalkyl substances (ΣPFASs, ≈60% perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS)) had the second greatest POP group concentrations in SHB and WHB respectively, with ΣPFASs and ΣCHLs being significantly influenced by age and/or sex. ΣCHLs were spatially uniform but ΣPFASs were greater in the SHB bears, as were e.g. some flame retardants, due to e.g. local contamination and/or changes in bear behavior and diet. Endosulfans and hexabromocyclododecane were detectable in samples from 2007-2008 but not from 2013-2014, which is consistent with their global POP regulations. ΣPolychlorinated naphthalenes (ΣPCNs) were consistently detected at relatively high concentrations compared to other arctic wildlife, however these concentrations were low relative to legacy POPs. ΣShort-chain chlorinated paraffins (ΣSCCPs) were major contributors to the overall POPs burden with concentrations comparable to other legacy POPs, though there was no significant difference between or within subpopulations for PCNs or SCCPs. Except for octachlorostyrene, POPs concentrations

  12. Heavy silicon isotopic composition of silicic acid and biogenic silica in Arctic waters over the Beaufort shelf and the Canada Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varela, D. E.; Brzezinski, M. A.; Beucher, C. P.; Jones, J. L.; Giesbrecht, K. E.; Lansard, B.; Mucci, A.

    2016-06-01

    The silicon isotopic composition of silicic acid (δ30Si(OH)4) and biogenic silica (δ30Si-bSiO2) were measured for the first time in marine Arctic waters from the Mackenzie River delta to the deep Canada Basin in the late summer of 2009. In the upper 100 m of the water column, δ30Si(OH)4 signals (+1.82‰ to +3.08‰) were negatively correlated with the relative contribution of Mackenzie River water. The biogenic Si isotope fractionation factor estimated using an open system model, 30ɛ = -0.97 ± 0.17‰, agrees well with laboratory and global-ocean estimates. Nevertheless, the δ30Si dynamics of this region may be better represented by closed system isotope models that yield lower values of 30ɛ, between -0.33‰ and -0.41‰, depending on how the contribution of sea-ice diatoms is incorporated. In the upper 400 m, δ30Si-bSiO2 values were among the heaviest ever measured in marine suspended bSiO2 (+2.03‰ to +3.51‰). A positive correlation between δ30Si-bSiO2 and sea-ice cover implies that heavy signals can result from isotopically heavy sea-ice diatoms introduced to pelagic assemblages. Below the surface bSiO2 production zone, the δ30Si(OH)4 distribution followed that of major water masses. Vertical δ30Si(OH)4 profiles showed a minimum (average of +1.84 ± 0.10‰) in the upper halocline (125-200 m) composed of modified Pacific water and heavier average values (+2.04 ± 0.11‰) in Atlantic water (300-500 m deep). In the Canada Basin Deep Water (below 2000 m), δ30Si(OH)4 averaged +1.88 ± 0.12‰, which represents the most positive value ever measured anywhere in the deep ocean. Since most Si(OH)4 enters the Arctic from shallow depths in the Atlantic Ocean, heavy deep Arctic δ30Si(OH)4 signals likely reflect the influx of relatively heavy intermediate Atlantic waters. A box model simulation of the global marine δ30Si(OH)4 distribution successfully reproduced the observed patterns, with the δ30Si(OH)4 of the simulated deep Arctic Ocean being the

  13. The Pliocene High Arctic terrestrial palaeoenvironmental record and the development of the western Canadian Arctic coastal plain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rybczynski, N.; Braschi, L.; Gosse, J. C.; Kennedy, C.; Fraser, D.; Lakeman, T.

    2013-12-01

    The Pliocene fossil record of the High Arctic is represented by a collection of sites that occur across the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA), with deposits in the west comprising a 1200 km-long dissected clastic wedge (Beaufort Formation) and those in the east represented by high terrace gravel deposits. Fossil material from these sites is often very well preserved and provides evidence of a boreal-type forest. In the eastern Arctic our research sites includes the Fyles Leaf Bed (FLB) and the Beaver Pond (BP) sites, on west central Ellesmere Island. These are about 10 km apart and preserve evidence of forest and peatlands. The BP fossil site preserves the remains of fossil vertebrates including fish, frog, horse, beaver, deerlet, and black bear, consistent with a boreal type forest habitat. The FLB site has recently yielded the first fossil evidence for a High Arctic camel, identified with the help of collagen fingerprinting from a fragmentary limb bone (tibia). Although modern camels live in open habitats, biogeographic and comparative dental evidence, in combination, suggest that the North American Arctic camels were browsers, and therefore forest-dwelling. Paleoenvironmental reconstruction of the Ellesmere sites has yielded a Mean Annual Temperature of between 14 to 22 degrees Celsius warmer than today. Minimum cosmogenic nuclide burial ages of 3.4 and 3.8 Ma obtained for the BP and FLB sites, respectively, are consistent with vertebrate and floral biostratigraphic evidence. The Beaufort Formation, located in the Western CAA, was formed by a regional northwesterly flowing braided fluvial system. The Beaufort Formation appears to have filled at least the western portions of the 100 km-wide channels that currently separate the islands of the CAA. Intervals of Pliocene continental-shelf progradation are recorded in the lower Iperk Formation, which is situated offshore and includes complex sigmoid-oblique clinoforms indicative of high-energy, coarse

  14. Impact of future Arctic shipping on high-latitude black carbon deposition (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Corbett, J. J.; Browse, J.; Carslaw, K. S.; Schmidt, A.

    2013-12-01

    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 snow-melt and sea-ice loss. We use recently compiled Arctic shipping emission inventories for 2004 and 2050 together with a global aerosol microphysics model GLOMAP coupled to the chemical transport model TOMCAT to quantify the contribution of future Arctic shipping to high-latitude BC deposition. Emission rates of SOx (SO2 and SO4) and particulate matter (PM) were estimated for 2050 under both business-as-usual and high-growth scenarios. BC particles are assumed to be water-insoluble at emission but can become active in cloud drop formation through soluble material accumulation. After BC particles become cloud-active they are more efficiently wet scavenged, which accounts for 80% of modeled BC deposition. Current-day Arctic shipping contributes 0.3% to the BC mass deposited north of 60N (250 Gg). About 50% of modelled BC deposition is on open ocean, suggesting that current Arctic ship traffic may not significantly contribute to BC deposition on central Arctic sea ice. However, 6 - 8% of deposited BC on the west coast of Greenland originates from local ship traffic. Moreover, in-Arctic shipping contributes some 32% to high-latitude ship-sourced deposition despite accounting for less than 1.0% of global shipping emissions. This suggests that control of in-Arctic shipping BC emissions could yield greater decrease in high-latitude BC deposition than a similar control strategy applied only to the extra-Arctic shipping industry. Arctic shipping in 2050 will contribute less than 1% to the total BC deposition north of 60N due to the much greater relative contribution of BC transported from non-shipping sources

  15. The characteristics and experience of community food program users in arctic Canada: a case study from Iqaluit, Nunavut

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ford James

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Community food programs (CFPs, including soup kitchens and food banks, are a recent development in larger settlements in the Canadian Arctic. Our understanding of utilization of these programs is limited as food systems research has not studied the marginalised and transient populations using CFPs, constraining service planning for some of the most vulnerable community members. This paper reports on a baseline study conducted with users of CFPs in Iqaluit, Nunavut, to identify and characterize utilization and document their food security experience. Methods Open ended interviews and a fixed-choice survey on a census (n = 94 were conducted with of users of the food bank, soup kitchen, and friendship centre over a 1 month period, along with key informant interviews. Results Users of CFPs are more likely to be Inuit, be unemployed, and have not completed high school compared to the general Iqaluit population, while also reporting high dependence on social assistance, low household income, and an absence of hunters in the household. The majority report using CFPs for over a year and on a regular basis. Conclusions The inability of users to obtain sufficient food must be understood in the context of socio-economic transformations that have affected Inuit society over the last half century as former semi-nomadic hunting groups were resettled into permanent settlements. The resulting livelihood changes profoundly affected how food is produced, processed, distributed, and consumed, and the socio-cultural relationships surrounding such activities. Consequences have included the rising importance of material resources for food access, the weakening of social safety mechanisms through which more vulnerable community members would have traditionally been supported, and acculturative stress. Addressing these broader challenges is essential for food policy, yet CFPs also have an essential role in providing for those who would

  16. The ecology and biological affinity of Arctic dinoflagellates and their paleoceanographical significance in the Canadian High Arctic

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rochon, A [ISMER-UQAR, 310 allee des Ursulines, Rimouski QC, G5L 3A1 (Canada)], E-mail: Andre_rochon@uqar.qc.ca

    2009-01-01

    Dinoflagellates are eukaryotic organisms and constitute an important group of marine primary producers. Approximately 10-15% of living dinoflagellates produce a highly resistant dormant cyst that is fossilisable, and which constitute an excellent proxy indicator of the upper water column conditions and productivity. Relatively little is known on the distribution in time and space of the dinoflagellate life cycle (i.e., vegetative and cyst stages) in the Canadian Arctic; most studies usually focusing on other groups of organisms (e.g., diatoms). Here, we present information on the ecology of dinoflagellate cysts and how they relate to their counterpart plankton stages. We discuss the importance of considering the biological affinities of dinoflagellates cysts and their relevance for paleoceanographical interpretations. We also provide insight on the actual lack of such knowledge for the Canadian Arctic cyst and plankton assemblages.

  17. Large surface radiative forcing from surface-based ice crystal events measured in the High Arctic at Eureka

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Lesins

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available Ice crystals, also known as diamond dust, are suspended in the boundary layer air under clear sky conditions during most of the Arctic winter in Northern Canada. Occasionally ice crystal events can produce significantly thick layers with optical depths in excess of 2.0 even in the absence of liquid water clouds. Four case studies of high optical depth ice crystal events at Eureka in the Nunavut Territory of Canada during the winter of 2006–2007 are presented. They show that the measured ice crystal surface infrared downward radiative forcing ranged from 8 to 36 W m−2 in the wavelength band from 5.6 to 20 μm for visible optical depths ranging from 0.2 to 1.7. MODIS infrared and visible images and the operational radiosonde wind profile were used to show that these high optical depth events were caused by surface snow being blown off 600 to 800 m high mountain ridges about 20 to 30 km North-West of Eureka and advected by the winds towards Eureka as they settled towards the ground within the highly stable boundary layer. This work presents the first study that demonstrates the important role that surrounding topography plays in determining the occurrence of high optical depth ice crystal events and points to a new source of boundary layer ice crystal events distinct from the classical diamond dust phenomenon.

  18. The late Wisconsinan and Holocene record of Walrus (Odobenus rosmarus) from North America: A review with new data from Arctic and Atlantic Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dyke, A.S.; Hooper, J.; Harington, C.R.; Savelle, J.M.

    1999-01-01

    The Late Wisconsinan and Holocene record of the Atlantic walrus is known from numerous collections of bones and tusks from Arctic Canada and south to North Carolina, as well as from many archaeological sites in the Arctic and Subarctic. In contrast, the Pacific walrus has no dated Late Wisconsinan or early Holocene record in North America, and it may have been displaced into the northwest Pacific at Last Glacial Maximum (LGM). The Atlantic walrus rapidly exploited newly deglaciated territory, moving northward from its LGM refugium and reaching the Bay of Fundy by 12800 B.P., the Grand Banks by 12500 B.P., southern Labrador by 11500 B.P., and the central Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA) by 9700 B.P. Its southern range limit may have retracted to the Bay of Fundy by ca. 7500 B.P. Within the CAA, walrus remains cluster in two main age groups: 9700 to 8500 B.P. and 5000 to 4/3000 B.P. This pattern strongly resembles the distribution of bowhead whale radiocarbon ages from the same area, which suggests a common control by sea-ice conditions. Walrus remains occur in Indian culture archaeological sites as old as 7500 B.P. and, in some cases (Namu, British Columbia, and Mackinac Island, Michigan), they evidently represent long-distance human transport. They are much more common in Paleoeskimo and Neoeskimo culture sites. However, they occur in very low abundances, and generally as debitage, in sites older than Dorset (2500 B.P.). The walrus, therefore, may not have been hunted by early Paleoeskimos. Beginning with Early Dorset, walrus remains occur in definite diet-related contexts. Middle Dorset (2300 to 1500 B.P.) and late Thule (displacement of people and resources.

  19. Remote Sensing of Ocean Color in the High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cota, G. F.; Platt, T.; Harrison, W. G.

    1997-01-01

    With four years of NASA SeaWiFS funding I established a completely new capability and expertise for in-water optical measurements nearly from scratch and with very little optical background. My first-year budget included only capital for a profiling spectral radiometer. Over the next 30 months we conducted six cruises and collected almost 300 optical profiles in challenging environments; many were collected from 21' launches. I also changed institutions during this period: it is very disruptive to move, set up a new lab, and hire and train new people, etc. We also did not have access to NASA funds for almost a year during the move because of difficulties in subcontracting and/or transferring funds. Nevertheless, we delivered data sets from six bio-optical cruises from three high latitude regions, although only two or three cruises from two areas were promised for our SeaWiFS research. The three Canadian Arctic field programs comprise the most comprehensive high latitude bio-optical and biogeochemical data sets in existence. Optical and pigment data from all six cruises have been submitted to NASA and are being included in the algorithm development test set. Additional data are still being submitted.

  20. Conservation of Peary caribou based on a recalculation of the 1961 aerial survey on the Queen Elizabeth Islands, Arctic Canada

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frank L. Miller

    2005-05-01

    Full Text Available The estimate of 25 845 Peary caribou (Rangifer tarandus pearyi on the Queen Elizabeth Islands (QEI in the Canadian High Arctic in summer 1961 is the only nearly range-wide 'benchmark' for the past number of caribou. No variances or confidence intervals were calculated for this estimate and no estimates were calculated for Peary caribou on the three major islands of Ellesmere, Devon, and Axel Heiberg. We reexamined the 1961 raw data by grouping the QEI into five island-complexes ('eco-units' and calculating, for each unit, the estimated number of caribou and the standard error, and the 95% confidence interval of the estimate, using a 'bootstrap' technique with 100 000 replications. Our goal was to provide an ecological basis for evaluating subsequent changes in numbers rather than relying on single-island evaluations. Our bootstrap reanalysis produced an estimate of 28 288 ± 2205 SE with a 95% CI of 20 436—37 031 Peary caribou on the QEI in summer 1961. Substantial differences in density were apparent among the five eco-units, with about a 50-fold difference from 0.01 caribou • km-2 in the Eastern eco-unit to 0.5 caribou • km-2 in the Northwestern eco-unit. The 1961 findings, with our subsequent reexamination, are crucial to any evaluation of trends for the number of Peary caribou on the QEI and the relative importance of individual eco-units for these animals. These findings also allow a more accurate evaluation of the magnitude of the subsequent decline of Peary caribou on the QEI during the last four decades and may help predict future potential levels for caribou in each of the five eco-units.

  1. 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

  2. Development of high strength line pipe for Arctic applications

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Collins, L.E.; Klein, R.; Bai, D. [Evraz Inc., Regina, SK (Canada). Frontier Pipe Research Unit

    2009-07-15

    The pipelines that will carry large volumes of natural gas from the Mackenzie Delta and the Alaska North Slope to Alberta will have to meet stringent new requirements on material performance. High strength steels with thick pipe walls will be needed to accommodate the high operating pressure that will be needed to transmit gas over long distances. In addition, low operating temperatures and strain-based designs will be needed to meet Arctic operating conditions in areas of continuous or discontinuous permafrost. The Mackenzie Gas Project (MGP) has specified 762 mm OD x 16.2 mm WT Grade 550 (APIx80). Although the pipe has a high degree of ductility, material performance is of concern in terms of girth welds and associated heat affected zones. Studies have shown that the weld strength must overmatch the longitudinal strength of the pipe by at least 5 per cent in order to deflect any failure from a crack on the weld fusion line. The weld itself and the HAZ must also demonstrate a high degree of toughness. While proponents of the Alaska gas pipeline wish to use Grade 690 (APIx100) line pipe, full stress capacity tests have yet to be completed for Grade 690 material in the preferred gauge of 19 to 25 mm. Therefore, this paper examined 3 key issues pertaining to the performance of high strength line pipe in strain-based designs. These included girth weld HAZ toughness; work hardening characteristics; and achievement of very high strength levels. It was concluded that much more effort is needed to fully optimize these steels and to translate preliminary laboratory solutions to workable processing technologies. 15 refs., 2 tabs., 8 figs.

  3. Encyclopedia of the Arctic

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Nuttall, M

    2005-01-01

    ..., physical processes, life sciences, and environmental change. This work is the result of over 375 international scholars and writers in all fields and relate to the eight Arctic countries: Canada, USA (Alaska), Greenland (Denmark...

  4. A high arctic experience of uniting research and monitoring

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schmidt, Niels Martin; Christensen, Torben R.; Roslin, Tomas

    2017-07-01

    Monitoring is science keeping our thumb on the pulse of the environment to detect any changes of concern for societies. Basic science is the question-driven search for fundamental processes and mechanisms. Given the firm root of monitoring in human interests and needs, basic sciences have often been regarded as scientifically "purer"—particularly within university-based research communities. We argue that the dichotomy between "research" and "monitoring" is an artificial one, and that this artificial split clouds the definition of scientific goals and leads to suboptimal use of resources. We claim that the synergy between the two scientific approaches is well distilled by science conducted under extreme logistic constraints, when scientists are forced to take full advantage of both the data and the infrastructure available. In evidence of this view, we present our experiences from two decades of uniting research and monitoring at the remote research facility Zackenberg in High Arctic Greenland. For this site, we show how the combination of insights from monitoring with the mechanistic understanding obtained from basic research has yielded the most complete understanding of the system—to the benefit of all, and as an example to follow. We therefore urge scientists from across the continuum from monitoring to research to come together, to disregard old division lines, and to work together to expose a comprehensive picture of ecosystem change and its consequences.

  5. Multiyear total and methyl mercury exports from two major sub-Arctic rivers draining into Hudson Bay, Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirk, Jane L; St Louis, Vincent L

    2009-04-01

    From 2003 to 2007, concentrations of total mercury and methylmercury (THg and MeHg) were continuously measured in two Canadian sub-Arctic rivers (the Nelson and the Churchill) that drain into western Hudson Bay. THg and MeHg concentrations were low in the Nelson River (mean i standard deviation, 0.88 +/- 0.33 and 0.05 +/- 0.03 ng L(-1), respectively). The Churchill River, however, had high concentrations of Hg, particularly MeHg (1.96 +/- 0.8 and 0.18 +/- 0.09 ng L(-1), respectively) and hence may be an important source of MeHg to organisms feeding in the Churchill River estuary. A large portion of THg in the Nelson River was particulate-bound (39 +/- 23%), while in the Churchill River, most was in the dissolved form (78 +/- 15%) and is likely dissolved organic carbon (DC)-bound Hg originating in the surrounding wetlands. In fact, both the Nelson and Churchill Rivers had high DOC concentrations and were therefore large exporters of DOC to Hudson Bay (1480 +/- 723 and 392 +/- 309 x 10(3) t year(-1), respectively) compared to rivers to the south and east Despite high Churchill River Hg concentrations, due to large Nelson River flows, average THg and MeHg exports to Hudson Bay from the Churchill River (37 +/- 28 and 4 +/- 4 kg year(-1), respectively) were about one-third and half the Nelson River exports (113 +/- 52 and 9 +/- 4 kg year(-1)). Interestingly, combined Hg exports to Hudson Bay from Nelson and Churchill River discharge are comparable to THg inputs from Hudson Bay springtime snowmelt (177 +/-140 kg year(-1)) but are approximately 13 times greater than MeHg snowmelt inputs (1 +/- 1 kg year(-1)). Although Hg inputs from rivers and snowmelt together may account for a large portion of the THg pool in Hudson Bay, these inputs account for a lesser portion of the MeHg pool, thus highlighting the importance of water column Hg(ll) methylation as a source of MeHg to Hudson Bay marine food webs.

  6. Multi Year Total and Methyl Mercury Exports from Two Major Sub Arctic Rivers Draining into Hudson Bay, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirk, J. L.; St. Louis, V. L.

    2009-05-01

    From 2003 to 2007, concentrations of total and methyl mercury (THg and MeHg), were continuously measured in two Canadian sub Arctic rivers (the Nelson and the Churchill) that drain into western Hudson Bay. THg and MeHg concentrations were low in the Nelson River (mean ± standard deviation; 0.88±0.33 and 0.05±0.03 ng/L, respectively). The Churchill River, however, had high concentrations of Hg, particularly MeHg (1.96±0.8 and 0.18±0.09 ng/L, respectively), and hence may be an important source of MeHg to organisms feeding in the Churchill River estuary. A large portion of THg in the Nelson River was particulate- bound (39±23%), while in the Churchill River, most was in the dissolved form (78±15%) and is likely DOC-bound Hg originating in surrounding wetlands. In fact, both the Nelson and Churchill Rivers had high DOC concentrations and were therefore large exporters of DOC to Hudson Bay (1480±723 and 392±309 x 103 tonnes/year, respectively) compared to rivers to the south and east. Despite high Churchill River Hg concentrations, due to large Nelson River flows, average THg and MeHg exports to Hudson Bay from the Churchill River (37±28 and 4±4 kg/year, respectively) were ˜ one third and half Nelson River exports (113±52 and 9±4 kg/year). Interestingly, combined Hg exports to Hudson Bay from Nelson and Churchill River discharge are comparable to THg inputs from Hudson Bay spring-time snowmelt (177±140 kg/year) but are approximately 13 times greater than MeHg snowmelt inputs (1±1 kg/year). Although Hg inputs from rivers and snowmelt together may account for a large portion of the THg pool in Hudson Bay, these inputs account for a lesser portion of the MeHg pool, thus highlighting the importance of water column Hg(II) methylation as a large source of MeHg to Hudson Bay marine foodwebs.

  7. Water Temperature Dynamics in High Arctic River Basins

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blaen, P. J.; Hannah, D. M.; Brown, L. E.; Milner, A. M.

    2012-04-01

    Despite the high sensitivity of polar regions to climate change, and the strong influence of temperature upon ecosystem processes, contemporary understanding of water temperature dynamics in Arctic river systems is limited. This research gap is addressed by exploring high-resolution water column thermal regimes for glacier-fed and non-glacial rivers at eight sites across Svalbard during the 2010 melt season. Mean water column temperatures in glacier-fed rivers (0.3 - 3.2 °C) were the lowest and most thermally-stable near the glacier terminus but increased downstream (0.7 - 2.3 °C km-1). Non-glacial rivers, where discharge was sourced primarily from snowmelt, were warmer (mean 2.9 - 5.7 °C) and more variable, indicating increased water residence times in shallow alluvial zones with increased potential for atmospheric influence. Mean summer water temperature and the magnitude of daily thermal variation were similar to those of Alaskan rivers but low at all sites when compared to alpine glacierized environments at lower latitudes. Thermal regimes were strongly correlated (pgeomorphological features (e.g. channel morphology). These results provide insight into the potential changes in high-latitude river systems in the context of projected warming in polar regions. We hypothesise warmer and more variable temperature regimes may prevail in future as the proportion of bulk discharge sourced from glacial meltwater declines and rivers undergo a progressive shift towards snow- and groundwater sources. Importantly, such changes could have implications for species diversity and abundance in benthic communities and influence rates of ecosystem functioning in high-latitude aquatic systems.

  8. Observations of a bromine explosion event coincident with the arrival of Arctic haze in the Canadian high Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bognar, Kristof; Zhao, Xiaoyi; Strong, Kimberly; Hayes, Patrick L.; Tremblay, Samantha; Chang, Rachel Y.-W.

    2017-04-01

    Exponential build-up of bromine in the polar troposphere is linked to severe multi-day ozone depletion events in springtime. The exact origins of, and the meteorological conditions required for these 'bromine explosions' are, however, not well understood. On March 19-21, 2016, a bromine explosion was detected at Eureka, Nunavut, Canada (80.1°N, 86.4°W). BrO slant column densities were retrieved from measurements made by a Multi-Axis Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy spectrometer. Ozonesonde data indicate that a compete depletion of near-surface ozone also took place in the same period. The bromine explosion was initiated by strong winds and blowing snow, while a stable boundary layer returned for the last day of the event. It is likely that bromine release was localized near Eureka, and both the snowpack and aerosols contributed. Scanning Mobility Particle Sizer data show that the bromine enhancement coincided with the onset of an Arctic haze event. This work investigates whether acidification from the haze contributed to the local release of bromine.

  9. 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.

  10. Geophysical analysis of the Alpha-Mendeleev ridge complex: Characterization of the High Arctic Large Igneous Province

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oakey, G. N.; Saltus, R. W.

    2016-11-01

    The Alpha-Mendeleev ridge complex is a first-order physiographic and geological feature of the Arctic Amerasia Basin. High amplitude "chaotic" magnetic anomalies (the High Arctic Magnetic High Domain or HAMH) are associated with the complex and extend beyond the bathymetric high beneath the sediment cover of the adjacent Canada and Makarov-Podvodnikov basins. Residual marine Bouguer gravity anomalies over the ridge complex have low amplitudes implying that the structure has minimal lateral density variability. A closed pseudogravity (magnetic potential) contour around the ridge complex quantifies the aerial extent of the HAMH at 1.3 × 106 km2. We present 2D gravity/magnetic models for transects across the Alpha Ridge portion of the complex constrained with recently acquired seismic reflection and refraction data. The crustal structure is modeled with a simple three-layer geometry. Large induced and remanent magnetization components were required to fit the observed magnetic anomalies. Density values for the models were based on available seismic refraction P-wave velocities. The 3000 kg/m3 lower crustal layer is interpreted as a composite of the original crustal protolith and deep (ultramafic) plutonic intrusions related to a plume sourced (High Arctic) LIP. The 2900 kg/m3 mid-crustal and 2600 kg/m3 upper-crustal layers are interpreted as the combined effect of sills, dikes, and flows. Volumetric estimates of the volcanic composition include (at least) 6 × 106 km3 for the mid- and upper-crust and between 13 × 106 and 17 × 106 km3 within the lower crust - for a total of 20 × 106 km3. We compare the magnetic structure, pseudogravity, and volumetric estimates for the HAMH portion of the HALIP with global large igneous province analogs and discuss implications for Arctic tectonics. Our results show that the closest analog to the HAMH/HALIP is the Kerguelen Plateau, which is considered a continental plateau intensively modified by plume-related volcanism.

  11. An expanded surface-water palaeotemperature inference model for use with fossil midges from eastern Canada

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Walker, I.R.; Levesque, A.J.; Cwynar, L.C.; Lotter, A.F.

    1997-01-01

    Using an expanded surface sample data set, representing lakes distributed across a transect from southernmost Canada to the Canadian High Arctic, a revised midge-palaeotemperature inference model was developed for eastern Canada.Modelling trials with weighted averaging (with classical and inverse de

  12. Origin and hydrology of a large, intact Early Cambrian paleocave system and its role in overlying fluidisation structures, Arctic Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mathieu, Jordan; Turner, Elizabeth C.; Rainbird, Robert H.

    2017-04-01

    Paleokarst is most commonly expressed as subtle stratigraphic surfaces rather than large void systems penetrating deeply into the paleo-subsurface. In contrast, a regional Precambrian-Cambrian unconformity on Victoria Island (NWT, Canada), is associated with exceptional exposure of large, intact Cambrian paleocaverns (100 m diameter; tens of m high). The paleocaves are distributed along a paleo-horizontal plane, and an associated gryke network is present in the 30-60 m of Neoproterozoic dolostone between cave rooves and the base of overlying Cambrian sandstone; both are filled by Cambrian sandstone. The formation and preservation of such karst features require aggressive dissolution along a stable paleo-water-table shortly before transgression and deposition of shallow-marine sand over the dolostone. During the transgression, the karst network acted as a conduit for flowing groundwater that was discharged through overlying, unconsolidated Cambrian shallow-marine sand, producing water-escape structures (sand volcanoes and their conduits). The conduits are preserved as cylindrical remnants of the sand volcanoes' feeder pipes. Sediment fluidisation was probably caused by variations in the hydraulic-head gradient in a meteoric lens near the Cambrian coastline under a tropical climate with abundant, probably seasonally variable rainfall that caused pulses in subsurface fluid flow. Spatial distribution of the paleocaves and sand volcanoes suggests their formation on the southeast side of a recently faulted horst of Proterozoic carbonate bedrock that formed a nearshore island during early Cambrian sea-level rise. Fluidisation structures such as those reported here have generally been difficult to interpret owing to a lack of data on the fluid hydraulics of the underlying aquifer. This is the first report linking the hydraulics of a well-characterised paleokarst to development of fluid-escape structures. Such structures are widely known from sandstones overlying the sub

  13. Sylvatic trichinosis in Canada.

    OpenAIRE

    Smith, H. J.; Snowdon, K E

    1988-01-01

    Pepsin digestion of musculature from 2253 animals revealed that sylvatic trichinosis occurred in various species of mammals from the eastern to the western Arctic and extended down into the Rocky Mountain and Foothills regions of western Canada. Infections were demonstrated in Arctic fox, red fox, wolf, raccoon, coyote, lynx, bobcat and dog.

  14. 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

  15. 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

  16. COMPARING FIELD PERFORMANCES OF DENUDER TECHNIQUES IN THE HIGH ARCTIC

    Science.gov (United States)

    A field evaluation between two annular denuder system configurations was conducted during the spring of 2003 in the marine Arctic (Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard). The IIA annular denuder system (ADS) employs a series of five single channel annular denuders, a cyclone and a filter pack to ...

  17. 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...

  18. High paleotemperatures in the Late Cretaceous Arctic ocean

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sinninghe Damsté, J.S.; Jenkyns, H.; Forster, A.; Schouten, S.

    2004-01-01

    To understand the climate dynamics of the warm, equable greenhouse world of the Late Cretaceous period, it is important to determine polar palaeotemperatures. The early palaeoceanographic history of the Arctic Ocean has, however, remained largely unknown, because the sea floor and underlying deposit

  19. High paleotemperatures in the Late Cretaceous Arctic ocean

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sinninghe Damsté, J.S.; Jenkyns, H.; Forster, A.; Schouten, S.

    2004-01-01

    To understand the climate dynamics of the warm, equable greenhouse world of the Late Cretaceous period, it is important to determine polar palaeotemperatures. The early palaeoceanographic history of the Arctic Ocean has, however, remained largely unknown, because the sea floor and underlying deposit

  20. Approaching a Postcolonial Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Lars

    2016-01-01

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

  1. Ice Mass Changes in the Russian High Arctic from Repeat High Resolution Topography.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willis, Michael; Zheng, Whyjay; Pritchard, Matthew; Melkonian, Andrew; Morin, Paul; Porter, Claire; Howat, Ian; Noh, Myoung-Jong; Jeong, Seongsu

    2016-04-01

    We use a combination of ASTER and cartographically derived Digital Elevation Models (DEMs) supplemented with WorldView DEMs, the ArcticDEM and ICESat lidar returns to produce a time-series of ice changes occurring in the Russian High Arctic between the mid-20th century and the present. Glaciers on the western, Barents Sea coast of Novaya Zemlya are in a state of general retreat and thinning, while those on the eastern, Kara Sea coast are retreating at a slower rate. Franz Josef Land has a complicated pattern of thinning and thickening, although almost all the thinning is associated with rapid outlet glaciers feeding ice shelves. Severnaya Zemlya is also thinning in a complicated manner. A very rapid surging glacier is transferring mass into the ocean from the western periphery of the Vavilov Ice Cap on October Revolution Island, while glaciers feeding the former Matusevich Ice Shelf continue to thin at rates that are faster than those observed during the operational period of ICESat, between 2003 and 2009. Passive microwave studies indicate the total number of melt days is increasing in the Russian Arctic, although much of the melt may refreeze within the firn. It is likely that ice dynamic changes will drive mass loss for the immediate future. The sub-marine basins beneath several of the ice caps in the region suggest the possibility that mass loss rates may accelerate in the future.

  2. 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...

  3. 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.

  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

    2009-01-01

    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

  5. The importance of freshwater systems to the net atmospheric exchange of carbon dioxide and methane with a rapidly changing high Arctic watershed

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emmerton, Craig A.; St. Louis, Vincent L.; Lehnherr, Igor; Graydon, Jennifer A.; Kirk, Jane L.; Rondeau, Kimberly J.

    2016-10-01

    A warming climate is rapidly changing the distribution and exchanges of carbon within high Arctic ecosystems. Few data exist, however, which quantify exchange of both carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) between the atmosphere and freshwater systems, or estimate freshwater contributions to total catchment exchange of these gases, in the high Arctic. During the summers of 2005 and 2007-2012, we quantified CO2 and CH4 concentrations in, and atmospheric exchange with, common freshwater systems in the high Arctic watershed of Lake Hazen, Nunavut, Canada. We identified four types of biogeochemically distinct freshwater systems in the watershed; however mean CO2 concentrations (21-28 µmol L-1) and atmospheric exchange (-0.013 to +0.046 g C-CO2 m-2 day-1) were similar between these systems. Seasonal flooding of ponds bordering Lake Hazen generated considerable CH4 emissions to the atmosphere (+0.008 g C-CH4 m-2 day-1), while all other freshwater systems were minimal emitters of this gas (climates than in the past, which may have implications for moisture availability, landscape cover, and the exchange of CO2 and CH4 of underproductive but expansive polar semidesert ecosystems.

  6. Determination of particulate organic carbon sources to the surface mixed layer of the Canada Basin, Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Kristina A.; McLaughlin, Fiona; Tortell, Philippe D.; Varela, Diana E.; Yamamoto-Kawai, Michiyo; Hunt, Brian; Francois, Roger

    2014-02-01

    Stable isotope ratios of particulate organic carbon (POC), together with other tracers, were analyzed in samples from the Canada Basin surface mixed layer in 2008 and 2009. Sampling was conducted during the end of the 2008 melt season and at the beginning of the 2009 freezeup under a variety of surface conditions, including open water, newly formed seasonal ice, and multiyear ice. In both years, POC exhibited a wide isotopic range (δ13C-POC -24.5 to -31.1‰), with the most isotopically depleted material generally found in the central basin. Isotopically enriched material was found on the shelves, consistent with higher biological production and strongly correlated with in situ carbon-uptake rates. In contrast, offshore in the central basin, there was no significant relationship between δ13C-POC distributions and either chlorophyll a or aqueous CO2 concentrations, suggesting that in situ biological production was not the dominant control. Analysis of freshwater sources suggested that the sea ice melt contribution of POC to surface waters in the central Canada Basin exerted a negligible influence on δ13C-POC distributions, and instead isotopically depleted POC in the surface waters of the central Canada Basin were sourced externally through advective transport of riverine organic matter. We show that alkalinity and meteoric water content can be used to distinguish POC inputs from North American and Russian rivers and our analysis suggests that Russian river inputs are the predominant source of 13C-depleted organic matter to the mixed layer of the central Canada Basin.

  7. 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

    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......, 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...... and changing dynamics and discuss how they relate to satellite observations. The relation to the upper ocean heat content is also investigated. The decreasing sea ice has opened up for increased ship traffic and oil exploration in the polar oceans. To avoid damage on the pristine Arctic ecosystem...

  8. 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....

  9. Circadian Countermeasures in the High Arctic during Summer

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-11-01

    June 2014 were conservative in their permissible limits of off-station travel in effort to protect the health and safety of station personnel. In...herein found that regulating outdoor travel and unnecessary exposure to bright nocturnal light can have a positive impact on the sleep quality of Arctic...off station for work or leisure . From our experience, the CO and SWO in June 2014 were more conservative than their 2012 counterparts in their

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MP Heide-Jørgensen

    2002-07-01

    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.

  11. Ecosystem responses to climate change at a Low Arctic and a High Arctic long-term research site.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hobbie, John E; Shaver, Gaius R; Rastetter, Edward B; Cherry, Jessica E; Goetz, Scott J; Guay, Kevin C; Gould, William A; Kling, George W

    2017-02-01

    Long-term measurements of ecological effects of warming are often not statistically significant because of annual variability or signal noise. These are reduced in indicators that filter or reduce the noise around the signal and allow effects of climate warming to emerge. In this way, certain indicators act as medium pass filters integrating the signal over years-to-decades. In the Alaskan Arctic, the 25-year record of warming of air temperature revealed no significant trend, yet environmental and ecological changes prove that warming is affecting the ecosystem. The useful indicators are deep permafrost temperatures, vegetation and shrub biomass, satellite measures of canopy reflectance (NDVI), and chemical measures of soil weathering. In contrast, the 18-year record in the Greenland Arctic revealed an extremely high summer air-warming of 1.3 °C/decade; the cover of some plant species increased while the cover of others decreased. Useful indicators of change are NDVI and the active layer thickness.

  12. Chronology and dynamics of the Amundsen Gulf Ice Stream in Arctic Canada during the last glacial-interglacial transition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lakeman, T. R.; MacLean, B.; Blasco, S.; Bennett, R.; Hughes Clarke, J. E.

    2012-04-01

    An extensive ice stream of the Laurentide ice sheet occupied Amundsen Gulf during the Last Glacial Maximum. The grounded ice stream extended northwestward to the margin of the inner shelf in the Beaufort Sea and to a depth of 450 metres. This glacier was one of the largest ice streams to emanate into the Arctic Ocean during the last glaciation and, as such, exerted a primary influence on the dynamics of the northwest Laurentide Ice Sheet. Ice stream retreat from its maximum position began prior to 13,000 cal yr BP. The pattern of extensive sole marks or glacial flutings on the seabed and on the adjacent mainland and islands confirms the direction of flow was from southeast to northwest. In the Gulf these features are imprinted primarily on subglacial sediment deposits. The bathymetry of the Gulf and known extent of the ice stream on land indicates the ice was at least 700 m thick. A series of moraines at the mouth of the Gulf mark temporary positions of the retreating ice stream margin. Early stages of ice retreat may have been associated with meltwater discharge under the ice stream as evidenced by current erosion associated with some sole marks or glacial flutings. Melting at the leading edge of the ice stream resulted in calving of icebergs and the generation of keel-scour marks in the seabed. Retreat of the ice stream was relatively rapid as indicated by thin and spatially discontinuous deglacial glaciomarine sediment in the Gulf. Furthermore, an expansive database of deglacial radiocarbon ages from eastern Banks Island, western Victoria Island, and the adjacent Arctic mainland, indicates that the ice stream had retreated fully from the Gulf by 12,500 cal yr BP. The lack of Holocene sediment draping the sole marks or flutings, and outcrops of exposed bedrock and glaciomarine sediment indicate very low sedimentation rates since ice retreat. The thin veneer of recent fine sediment that has been deposited discontinuously on the seabed in the Gulf indicates little

  13. Molecular analyses reveal high species diversity of trematodes in a sub-Arctic lake

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soldánová, Miroslava; Georgieva, Simona; Roháčováa, Jana; Knudsen, Rune; Kuhn, Jesper A.; Henriksen, Eirik H.; Siwertsson, Anna; Shaw, Jenny C.; Kuris, Armand M.; Amundsen, Per-Arne; Scholz, Tomáš; Lafferty, Kevin D.; Kostadinova, Aneta

    2017-01-01

    To identify trematode diversity and life-cycles in the sub-Arctic Lake Takvatn, Norway, we characterised 120 trematode isolates from mollusc first intermediate hosts, metacercariae from second intermediate host fishes and invertebrates, and adults from fish and invertebrate definitive hosts, using molecular techniques. Phylogenies based on nuclear and/or mtDNA revealed high species richness (24 species or species-level genetic lineages), and uncovered trematode diversity (16 putative new species) from five families typical in lake ecosystems (Allocreadiidae, Diplostomidae, Plagiorchiidae, Schistosomatidae and Strigeidae). Sampling potential invertebrate hosts allowed matching of sequence data for different stages, thus achieving molecular elucidation of trematode life-cycles and exploration of host-parasite interactions. Phylogenetic analyses also helped identify three major mollusc intermediate hosts (Radix balthica, Pisidium casertanum and Sphaerium sp.) in the lake. Our findings increase the known trematode diversity at the sub-Arctic Lake Takvatn, showing that digenean diversity is high in this otherwise depauperate sub-Arctic freshwater ecosystem, and indicating that sub-Arctic and Arctic ecosystems may be characterised by unique trematode assemblages.

  14. Seismic velocities within the sedimentary succession of the Canada Basin and southern Alpha-Mendeleev Ridge, Arctic Ocean: evidence for accelerated porosity reduction?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimeld, John; Li, Qingmou; Chian, Deping; Lebedeva-Ivanova, Nina; Jackson, Ruth; Mosher, David; Hutchinson, Deborah

    2016-01-01

    The Canada Basin and the southern Alpha-Mendeleev ridge complex underlie a significant proportion of the Arctic Ocean, but the geology of this undrilled and mostly ice-covered frontier is poorly known. New information is encoded in seismic wide-angle reflections and refractions recorded with expendable sonobuoys between 2007 and 2011. Velocity-depth samples within the sedimentary succession are extracted from published analyses for 142 of these records obtained at irregularly spaced stations across an area of 1.9E + 06 km2. The samples are modelled at regional, subregional and station-specific scales using an exponential function of inverse velocity versus depth with regionally representative parameters determined through numerical regression. With this approach, smooth, non-oscillatory velocity-depth profiles can be generated for any desired location in the study area, even where the measurement density is low. Practical application is demonstrated with a map of sedimentary thickness, derived from seismic reflection horizons interpreted in the time domain and depth converted using the velocity-depth profiles for each seismic trace. A thickness of 12-13 km is present beneath both the upper Mackenzie fan and the middle slope off of Alaska, but the sedimentary prism thins more gradually outboard of the latter region. Mapping of the observed-to-predicted velocities reveals coherent geospatial trends associated with five subregions: the Mackenzie fan; the continental slopes beyond the Mackenzie fan; the abyssal plain; the southwestern Canada Basin; and, the Alpha-Mendeleev magnetic domain. Comparison of the subregional velocity-depth models with published borehole data, and interpretation of the station-specific best-fitting model parameters, suggests that sandstone is not a predominant lithology in any of the five subregions. However, the bulk sand-to-shale ratio likely increases towards the Mackenzie fan, and the model for this subregion compares favourably with

  15. Seismic velocities within the sedimentary succession of the Canada Basin and southern Alpha-Mendeleev Ridge, Arctic Ocean: evidence for accelerated porosity reduction?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimeld, John; Li, Qingmou; Chian, Deping; Lebedeva-Ivanova, Nina; Jackson, Ruth; Mosher, David; Hutchinson, Deborah R.

    2016-01-01

    The Canada Basin and the southern Alpha-Mendeleev ridge complex underlie a significant proportion of the Arctic Ocean, but the geology of this undrilled and mostly ice-covered frontier is poorly known. New information is encoded in seismic wide-angle reflections and refractions recorded with expendable sonobuoys between 2007 and 2011. Velocity–depth samples within the sedimentary succession are extracted from published analyses for 142 of these records obtained at irregularly spaced stations across an area of 1.9E + 06 km2. The samples are modelled at regional, subregional and station-specific scales using an exponential function of inverse velocity versus depth with regionally representative parameters determined through numerical regression. With this approach, smooth, non-oscillatory velocity–depth profiles can be generated for any desired location in the study area, even where the measurement density is low. Practical application is demonstrated with a map of sedimentary thickness, derived from seismic reflection horizons interpreted in the time domain and depth converted using the velocity–depth profiles for each seismic trace. A thickness of 12–13 km is present beneath both the upper Mackenzie fan and the middle slope off of Alaska, but the sedimentary prism thins more gradually outboard of the latter region. Mapping of the observed-to-predicted velocities reveals coherent geospatial trends associated with five subregions: the Mackenzie fan; the continental slopes beyond the Mackenzie fan; the abyssal plain; the southwestern Canada Basin; and, the Alpha-Mendeleev magnetic domain. Comparison of the subregional velocity–depth models with published borehole data, and interpretation of the station-specific best-fitting model parameters, suggests that sandstone is not a predominant lithology in any of the five subregions. However, the bulk sand-to-shale ratio likely increases towards the Mackenzie fan, and the model for this subregion compares

  16. Application of Terrestrial Ecosystem Monitoring under the CAFF Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Program: Designing and Implementing Terrestrial Monitoring to Establish the Canadian High Arctic Research Station as a Flagship Arctic Environmental Monitoring Site

    Science.gov (United States)

    McLennan, D.; Kehler, D.

    2016-12-01

    The Canadian High Arctic Research Station (CHARS) is scheduled for completion in July 2017 and is the northern science component of Polar Knowledge Canada (POLAR). A mandated goal for POLAR is to establish the adjacent Experimental and Reference Area (ERA) as an Arctic Flagship monitoring site that will track change in Arctic terrestrial, freshwater and marine ecosystems. Situated in the community of Cambridge Bay, CHARS provides the opportunity to draw on the Indigenous Knowledge of local residents to help design and conduct the monitoring, and to operate 12 months a year. Monitoring at CHARS will be linked to networks nationally and internationally, and is being designed so that change in key indicators can be understood in terms of drivers and processes, modeled and scaled up regionally, and used to predict important changes in critical indicators. As a partner in the Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Program (CBMP), the monitoring design for terrestrial ecosystems follows approaches outlined by the CBMP Terrestrial Expert Monitoring Group, who have listed key monitoring questions and identified a list of important Focal Ecosystem Components (FECs). To link drivers to FECs we are proposing a multi-scaled approach: 1) an Intensive Monitoring Area to establish replicated monitoring plots that track change in snow depth and condition, active layer depth, soil temperature, soil moisture, and soil solution chemistry that are spatially and temporally linked to changes in microbiological activity, CO2/CH4 net ecosystem flux, vegetation relative frequency, species composition, growth and foliar nutrient concentration, arthropod abundance, lemming abundance and health, and shorebird/songbird abundance and productivity. 2) These intensive observations are supported by watershed scale measures that will monitor, during the growing season, lemming winter nest abundance, songbird, shorebird and waterfowl staging and nesting, and other observations; in the winter we will

  17. Changing Arctic Ocean freshwater pathways.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morison, James; Kwok, Ron; Peralta-Ferriz, Cecilia; Alkire, Matt; Rigor, Ignatius; Andersen, Roger; Steele, Mike

    2012-01-04

    Freshening in the Canada basin of the Arctic Ocean began in the 1990s and continued to at least the end of 2008. By then, the Arctic Ocean might have gained four times as much fresh water as comprised the Great Salinity Anomaly of the 1970s, raising the spectre of slowing global ocean circulation. Freshening has been attributed to increased sea ice melting and contributions from runoff, but a leading explanation has been a strengthening of the Beaufort High--a characteristic peak in sea level atmospheric pressure--which tends to accelerate an anticyclonic (clockwise) wind pattern causing convergence of fresh surface water. Limited observations have made this explanation difficult to verify, and observations of increasing freshwater content under a weakened Beaufort High suggest that other factors must be affecting freshwater content. Here we use observations to show that during a time of record reductions in ice extent from 2005 to 2008, the dominant freshwater content changes were an increase in the Canada basin balanced by a decrease in the Eurasian basin. Observations are drawn from satellite data (sea surface height and ocean-bottom pressure) and in situ data. The freshwater changes were due to a cyclonic (anticlockwise) shift in the ocean pathway of Eurasian runoff forced by strengthening of the west-to-east Northern Hemisphere atmospheric circulation characterized by an increased Arctic Oscillation index. Our results confirm that runoff is an important influence on the Arctic Ocean and establish that the spatial and temporal manifestations of the runoff pathways are modulated by the Arctic Oscillation, rather than the strength of the wind-driven Beaufort Gyre circulation.

  18. 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

  19. Vascular plant biodiversity of the lower Coppermine River valley and vicinity (Nunavut, Canada): an annotated checklist of an Arctic flora

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bull, Roger D.

    2017-01-01

    The Coppermine River in western Nunavut is one of Canada’s great Arctic rivers, yet its vascular plant flora is poorly known. Here, we report the results of a floristic inventory of the lower Coppermine River valley and vicinity, including Kugluk (Bloody Falls) Territorial Park and the hamlet of Kugluktuk. The study area is approximately 1,200 km2, extending from the forest-tundra south of the treeline to the Arctic coast. Vascular plant floristic data are based on a review of all previous collections from the area and more than 1,200 new collections made in 2014. Results are presented in an annotated checklist, including citation of all specimens examined, comments on taxonomy and distribution, and photographs for a subset of taxa. The vascular plant flora comprises 300 species (311 taxa), a 36.6% increase from the 190 species documented by previous collections made in the area over the last century, and is considerably more diverse than other local floras on mainland Nunavut. We document 207 taxa for Kugluk (Bloody Falls) Territorial Park, an important protected area for plants on mainland Nunavut. A total of 190 taxa are newly recorded for the study area. Of these, 14 taxa (13 species and one additional variety) are newly recorded for Nunavut (Allium schoenoprasum, Carex capitata, Draba lonchocarpa, Eremogone capillaris subsp. capillaris, Sabulina elegans, Eleocharis quinqueflora, Epilobium cf. anagallidifolium, Botrychium neolunaria, Botrychium tunux, Festuca altaica, Polygonum aviculare, Salix ovalifolia var. arctolitoralis, Salix ovalifolia var. ovalifolia and Stuckenia pectinata), seven species are newly recorded for mainland Nunavut (Carex gynocrates, Carex livida, Cryptogramma stelleri, Draba simmonsii, Festuca viviparoidea subsp. viviparoidea, Juncus alpinoarticulatus subsp. americanus and Salix pseudomyrsinites) and 56 range extensions are reported. The psbA-trnH and rbcL DNA sequence data were used to help identify the three Botrychium taxa recorded

  20. Present and Future Surface Mass Budget of Small Arctic Ice Caps in a High Resolution Regional Climate Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mottram, Ruth; Langen, Peter; Koldtoft, Iben; Midefelt, Linnea; Hesselbjerg Christensen, Jens

    2016-04-01

    Globally, small ice caps and glaciers make a substantial contribution to sea level rise; this is also true in the Arctic. Around Greenland small ice caps are surprisingly important to the total mass balance from the island as their marginal coastal position means they receive a large amount of precipitation and also experience high surface melt rates. Since small ice caps and glaciers have had a disproportionate number of long-term monitoring and observational schemes in the Arctic, likely due to their relative accessibility, they can also be a valuable source of data. However, in climate models the surface mass balance contributions are often not distinguished from the main ice sheet and the presence of high relief topography is difficult to capture in coarse resolution climate models. At the same time, the diminutive size of marginal ice masses in comparison to the ice sheet makes modelling their ice dynamics difficult. Using observational data from the Devon Ice Cap in Arctic Canada and the Renland Ice Cap in Eastern Greenland, we assess the success of a very high resolution (~5km) regional climate model, HIRHAM5 in capturing the surface mass balance (SMB) of these small ice caps. The model is forced with ERA-Interim and we compare observed mean SMB and the interannual variability to assess model performance. The steep gradient in topography around Renland is challenging for climate models and additional statistical corrections are required to fit the calculated surface mass balance to the high relief topography. Results from a modelling experiment at Renland Ice Cap shows that this technique produces a better fit between modelled and observed surface topography. We apply this statistical relationship to modelled SMB on the Devon Ice Cap and use the long time series of observations from this glacier to evaluate the model and the smoothed SMB. Measured SMB values from a number of other small ice caps including Mittivakkat and A.P. Olsen ice cap are also compared

  1. New High-Resolution Images of Summer Arctic Sea Ice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kwok, Ronald; Untersteiner, Norbert

    2011-02-01

    In 1995 a group of government and academic scientists were appointed by the vice president of the United States to review and advise on acquisitions of imagery obtained by classified intelligence satellites (National Technical Means) and to recommend the declassification of certain data sets for the benefit of science. The group is called MEDEA and was first described by Richelson [1998]. MEDEA disbanded in 2000 but reassembled in 2008. On 15 June 2009, under the auspices of MEDEA, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) released to the public as Literal Image Derived Products (LIDPs) numerous images with 1-meter resolution acquired since 1999 at six locations in the Arctic Basin (Beaufort Sea, Canadian Arctic, Fram Strait, East Siberian Sea, Chukchi Sea, and Point Barrow). These locations are named “fiducial sites” to suggest that the collected imagery establishes a baseline data set for understanding recent and future changes. Data in the Global Fiducials Library (GFL) can be accessed via http://gfl.usgs.gov/. This data repository is updated by USGS as additional data become available.

  2. Hydrocarbon biodegradation by Arctic sea-ice and sub-ice microbial communities during microcosm experiments, Northwest Passage (Nunavut, Canada).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garneau, Marie-Ève; Michel, Christine; Meisterhans, Guillaume; Fortin, Nathalie; King, Thomas L; Greer, Charles W; Lee, Kenneth

    2016-10-01

    The increasing accessibility to navigation and offshore oil exploration brings risks of hydrocarbon releases in Arctic waters. Bioremediation of hydrocarbons is a promising mitigation strategy but challenges remain, particularly due to low microbial metabolic rates in cold, ice-covered seas. Hydrocarbon degradation potential of ice-associated microbes collected from the Northwest Passage was investigated. Microcosm incubations were run for 15 days at -1.7°C with and without oil to determine the effects of hydrocarbon exposure on microbial abundance, diversity and activity, and to estimate component-specific hydrocarbon loss. Diversity was assessed with automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis and Ion Torrent 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Bacterial activity was measured by (3)H-leucine uptake rates. After incubation, sub-ice and sea-ice communities degraded 94% and 48% of the initial hydrocarbons, respectively. Hydrocarbon exposure changed the composition of sea-ice and sub-ice communities; in sea-ice microcosms, Bacteroidetes (mainly Polaribacter) dominated whereas in sub-ice microcosms, the contribution of Epsilonproteobacteria increased, and that of Alphaproteobacteria and Bacteroidetes decreased. Sequencing data revealed a decline in diversity and increases in Colwellia and Moritella in oil-treated microcosms. Low concentration of dissolved organic matter (DOM) in sub-ice seawater may explain higher hydrocarbon degradation when compared to sea ice, where DOM was abundant and composed of labile exopolysaccharides.

  3. Density dependence and phenological mismatch: consequences for growth and survival of sub-arctic nesting Canada Geese

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brook, Rodney W.; Leafloor, James O.; Douglas, David C.; Abraham, Kenneth F.

    2015-01-01

    The extent to which species are plastic in the timing of their reproductive events relative to phenology suggests how change might affect their demography. An ecological mismatch between the timing of hatch for avian species and the peak availability in quality and quantity of forage for rapidly growing offspring might ultimately affect recruitment to the breeding population unless individuals can adjust the timing of breeding to adapt to changing phenology. We evaluated effects of goose density, hatch timing relative to forage plant phenology, and weather indices on annual growth of pre-fledging Canada geese (Branta canadensis) from 1993-2010 at Akimiski Island, Nunavut. We found effects of both density and hatch timing relative to forage plant phenology; the earlier that eggs hatched relative to forage plant phenology, the larger the mean gosling size near fledging. Goslings were smallest in years when hatch was latest relative to forage plant phenology, and when local abundance of breeding adults was highest. We found no evidence for a trend in relative hatch timing, but it was apparent that in early springs, Canada geese tended to hatch later relative to vegetation phenology, suggesting that geese were not always able to adjust the timing of nesting as rapidly as vegetation phenology was advanced. Analyses using forage biomass information revealed a positive relationship between gosling size and per capita biomass availability, suggesting a causal mechanism for the density effect. The effects of weather parameters explained additional variation in mean annual gosling size, although total June and July rainfall had a small additive effect on gosling size. Modelling of annual first year survival probability using mean annual gosling size as an annual covariate revealed a positive relationship, suggesting that reduced gosling growth negatively impacts recruitment.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hendrichsen, Ditte Katrine

    , 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...

  5. 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.

  6. Benthic cyanobacterial mats in the high Arctic: multi-layer structure and fluorescence responses to osmotic stress

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marie eLionard

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available 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 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. 16S rRNA gene clone libraries 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. HPLC analyses showed a parallel gradient in pigments, from high concentrations of 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 increased evaporation and osmotic stress of the littoral mat communities. To assess their capacity to adjust to rising osmolarities, 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 absence of major biological perturbations, these vertically structured communities will continue to be a prominent feature of polar aquatic ecosystems.

  7. "Symptoms of something all around us": Mental health, Inuit culture, and criminal justice in Arctic communities in Nunavut, Canada.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferrazzi, Priscilla; Krupa, Terry

    2016-09-01

    Rehabilitation-oriented criminal court mental health initiatives to reduce the number of people with mental illness caught in the criminal justice system exist in many North American cities and elsewhere but not in the mainly Inuit Canadian Arctic territory of Nunavut. This study explores whether the therapeutic aims of these resource-intensive, mainly urban initiatives can be achieved in criminal courts in Nunavut's resource constrained, culturally distinct and geographically remote communities. A qualitative multiple-case study in the communities of Iqaluit, Arviat and Qikiqtarjuaq involved 55 semi-structured interviews and three focus groups with participants representing four sectors essential to these initiatives: justice, health, community organizations and community members. These interviews explored whether the therapeutic jurisprudence (TJ) principles that guide criminal court mental health initiatives and the component objectives of these principles could be used to improve the criminal court response to people with mental illness in Nunavut. Interviews revealed 13 themes reflecting perceptions of Inuit culture's influence on the identification of people with mental illness, treatment, and collaboration between the court and others. These themes include cultural differences in defining mental illness, differences in traditional and contemporary treatment models, and the importance of mutual cultural respect. The findings suggest Inuit culture, including its recent history of cultural disruption and change, affects the vulnerability of Nunavut communities to the potential moral and legal pitfalls associated with TJ and criminal court mental health initiatives. These pitfalls include the dominance of biomedical approaches when identifying a target population, the medicalization of behaviour and culture, the risk of "paternalism" in therapeutic interventions, and shortcomings in interdisciplinary collaboration that limit considerations of Inuit culture. The

  8. 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...

  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. Endophytic Fungal Communities Associated with Vascular Plants in the High Arctic Zone Are Highly Diverse and Host-Plant Specific.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tao Zhang

    Full Text Available This study assessed the diversity and distribution of endophytic fungal communities associated with the leaves and stems of four vascular plant species in the High Arctic using 454 pyrosequencing with fungal-specific primers targeting the ITS region. Endophytic fungal communities showed high diversity. The 76,691 sequences obtained belonged to 250 operational taxonomic units (OTUs. Of these OTUs, 190 belonged to Ascomycota, 50 to Basidiomycota, 1 to Chytridiomycota, and 9 to unknown fungi. The dominant orders were Helotiales, Pleosporales, Capnodiales, and Tremellales, whereas the common known fungal genera were Cryptococcus, Rhizosphaera, Mycopappus, Melampsora, Tetracladium, Phaeosphaeria, Mrakia, Venturia, and Leptosphaeria. Both the climate and host-related factors might shape the fungal communities associated with the four Arctic plant species in this region. These results suggested the presence of an interesting endophytic fungal community and could improve our understanding of fungal evolution and ecology in the Arctic terrestrial ecosystems.

  11. 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.

  12. Diversity and distribution of fungal communities in the marine sediments of Kongsfjorden, Svalbard (High Arctic)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Tao; Fei Wang, Neng; Qin Zhang, Yu; Yu Liu, Hong; Yan Yu, Li

    2015-10-01

    This study assessed the diversity and distribution of fungal communities in eight marine sediments of Kongsfjorden (Svalbard, High Arctic) using 454 pyrosequencing with fungal-specific primers targeting the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region of the ribosomal rRNA gene. Sedimentary fungal communities showed high diversity with 42,219 reads belonging to 113 operational taxonomic units (OTUs). Of these OTUs, 62 belonged to the Ascomycota, 26 to Basidiomycota, 2 to Chytridiomycota, 1 to Zygomycota, 1 to Glomeromycota, and 21 to unknown fungi. The major known orders included Hypocreales and Saccharomycetales. The common fungal genera were Pichia, Fusarium, Alternaria, and Malassezia. Interestingly, most fungi occurring in these Arctic sediments may originate from the terrestrial habitats and different basins in Kongsfjorden (i.e., inner basin, central basin, and outer basin) harbor different sedimentary fungal communities. These results suggest the existence of diverse fungal communities in the Arctic marine sediments, which may serve as a useful community model for further ecological and evolutionary study of fungi in the Arctic.

  13. Microbes in high arctic snow and implications for the cold biosphere.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harding, Tommy; Jungblut, Anne D; Lovejoy, Connie; Vincent, Warwick F

    2011-05-01

    We applied molecular, microscopic, and culture techniques to characterize the microbial communities in snow and air at remote sites in the Canadian High Arctic (Ward Hunt Island, Ellesmere Island, and Cornwallis Island, latitudes 74 to 83(o)N). Members of the Bacteria and Eukarya were prevalent in the snow, and their small subunit (SSU) rRNA gene signatures indicated strong local aerial transport within the region over the preceding 8 months of winter snowpack accumulation. Many of the operational taxonomic units (OTUs) were similar to previously reported SSU rRNA gene sequences from the Arctic Ocean, suggesting the importance of local aerial transport processes for marine microbiota. More than 47% of the cyanobacterial OTUs in the snow have been previously found in microbial mats in the region, indicating that this group was also substantially derived from local sources. Viable cyanobacteria isolated from the snow indicated free exchange between the snow and adjacent mat communities. Other sequences were most similar to those found outside the Canadian Arctic but were from snow, lake and sea ice, glaciers and permafrost, alpine regions, Antarctica, and other regions of the Arctic, supporting the concept of global distribution of microbial ecotypes throughout the cold biosphere.

  14. Modelling and mapping climate change impacts on permafrost at high spatial resolution for an Arctic region with complex terrain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Zhang

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Most spatial modelling of climate change impacts on permafrost has been conducted at half-degree latitude/longitude or coarser spatial resolution. At such coarse resolution, topographic effects on insolation cannot be considered accurately and the results are not suitable for land-use planning and ecological assessment. Here we mapped climate change impacts on permafrost from 1968 to 2100 at 10 m resolution using a process-based model for Ivvavik National Park, an Arctic region with complex terrain in northern Yukon, Canada. Soil and drainage conditions were defined based on ecosystem types, which were mapped using SPOT imagery. Leaf area indices were mapped using Landsat imagery and the ecosystem map. Climate distribution was estimated based on elevation and station observations, and the effects of topography on insolation were calculated based on slope, aspect and viewshed. To reduce computation time, we clustered climate distribution and topographic effects on insolation into discrete types. The modelled active-layer thickness and permafrost distribution were comparable with field observations and other studies. The map portrayed large variations in active-layer thickness, with ecosystem types being the most important controlling variable, followed by climate, including topographic effects on insolation. The results show deepening in active-layer thickness and progressive degradation of permafrost, although permafrost will persist in most of the park during the 21st century. This study also shows that ground conditions and climate scenarios are the major sources of uncertainty for high-resolution permafrost mapping.

  15. Volatile organic compound emissions from arctic vegetation highly responsive to experimental warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinnan, Riikka; Kramshøj, Magnus; Lindwall, Frida; Schollert, Michelle; Svendsen, Sarah H.; Valolahti, Hanna

    2017-04-01

    Arctic areas are experiencing amplified climate warming that proceeds twice as fast as the global temperature increase. The increasing temperature is already causing evident alterations, e.g. changes in the vegetation cover as well as thawing of permafrost. Climate warming and the concomitant biotic and abiotic changes are likely to have strong direct and indirect effects on emission of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from arctic vegetation. We used long-term field manipulation experiments in the Subarctic, Low Arctic and High Arctic to assess effects of climate change on VOC emissions from vegetation communities. In these experiments, we applied passive warming with open-top chambers alone and in combination with other experimental treatments in well-replicated experimental designs. Volatile emissions were sampled in situ by drawing air from plant enclosures and custom-built chambers into adsorbent cartridges, which were analyzed by thermal desorption and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry in laboratory. Emission increases by a factor of 2-5 were observed under experimental warming by only a few degrees, and the strong response seems universal for dry, mesic and wet ecosystems. In some cases, these vegetation community level responses were partly due to warming-induced increases in the VOC-emitting plant biomass, changes in species composition and the following increase in the amount of leaf litter (Valolahti et al. 2015). In other cases, the responses appeared before any vegetation changes took place (Lindwall et al. 2016) or even despite a decrease in plant biomass (Kramshøj et al. 2016). VOC emissions from arctic ecosystems seem more responsive to experimental warming than other ecosystem processes. We can thus expect large increases in future VOC emissions from this area due to the direct effects of temperature increase, and due to increasing plant biomass and a longer growing season. References Kramshøj M., Vedel-Petersen I., Schollert M., Rinnan

  16. Quaternary geology of the Duck Hawk Bluffs, southwest Banks Island, Arctic Canada: a re-investigation of a critical terrestrial type locality for glacial and interglacial events bordering the Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, David J. A.; England, John H.; La Farge, Catherine; Coulthard, Roy D.; Lakeman, Thomas R.; Vaughan, Jessica M.

    2014-05-01

    Duck Hawk Bluffs, southwest Banks Island, is a primary section (8 km long and 60 m high) in the western Canadian Arctic Archipelago exposing a long record of Quaternary sedimentation adjacent to the Arctic Ocean. A reinvestigation of Duck Hawk Bluffs demonstrates that it is a previously unrecognized thrust-block moraine emplaced from the northeast by Laurentide ice. Previous stratigraphic models of Duck Hawk Bluffs reported a basal unit of preglacial fluvial sand and gravel (Beaufort Fm, forested Arctic), overlain by a succession of three glaciations and at least two interglacials. Our observations dismiss the occurrence of preglacial sediments and amalgamate the entire record into three glacial intervals and one prominent interglacial. The first glacigenic sedimentation is recorded by an ice-contact sandur containing redeposited allochthonous organics previously assigned to the Beaufort Fm. This is overlain by fine-grained sediments with ice wedge pseudomorphs and well-preserved bryophyte assemblages corresponding to an interglacial environment similar to modern. The second glacial interval is recorded by ice-proximal mass flows and marine rhythmites that were glacitectonized when Laurentide ice overrode the site from Amundsen Gulf to the south. Sediments of this interval have been reported to be magnetically reversed (>780 ka). The third interval of glacigenic sedimentation includes glacifluvial sand and gravel recording the arrival of Laurentide ice that overrode the site from the northeast (island interior) depositing a glacitectonite and constructing the thrust block moraine that comprises Duck Hawk Bluffs. Sediments of this interval have been reported to be magnetically normal (ice from the interior of Banks Island coalesced with an ice stream in Amundsen Gulf, depositing the interlobate Sachs Moraine that contains shells as young as ˜24 cal ka BP (Late Wisconsinan). During deglaciation, meltwater emanating from these separating ice lobes deposited outwash

  17. Thallium contamination of water in Canada

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cheam, V. [National Water Research Institute Branch, Burlington, ON (Canada). Aquatic Ecosystems Protection Research Branch

    2001-07-01

    A highly sensitive instrument, a Laser-Excited Atomic Fluorescence Spectrometer, has been developed to study thallium contamination in some important Canadian ecosystems from the Arctic (containing very low thallium concentration) to coal-related industries across Canada and even to the study of thallium toxicity in an invertebrate, Hyalella azteca. Overall, the data indicate that the coal power plants and mines contain higher thallium concentrations than the other ecosystems studied, and the eastern region has the highest Tl concentrations compared to other regions. The range of thallium concentration in ng/L for the Arctic snow and ice was between not detected and 8.4, for the Great Lakes waters 0.9 to 48, for pore waters 0.1 to 213, for western coal power plants and mines 0.1 to 1326, for central coal power plants 1.2 to 175, for eastern coal power plants and mines 0.2 to 23605, and for miscellaneous sites across Canada not detected to 4390 ng/L. Some of these high concentrations and those high ones reported in industrial wastewaters exceeded the chronic toxicity endpoints for Hyalella azteca mortality, growth and reproduction, and thus can cause serious distress to the environment. All data were integrated into a map of thallium distribution, the first one in Canada. Natural background level of thallium for the Arctic was estimated to be 0.02 to 0.03 pg/g.

  18. Climate change impacts on wildlife in a High Arctic archipelago - Svalbard, Norway.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Descamps, Sébastien; Aars, Jon; Fuglei, Eva; Kovacs, Kit M; Lydersen, Christian; Pavlova, Olga; Pedersen, Åshild Ø; Ravolainen, Virve; Strøm, Hallvard

    2017-02-01

    The Arctic is warming more rapidly than other region on the planet, and the northern Barents Sea, including the Svalbard Archipelago, is experiencing the fastest temperature increases within the circumpolar Arctic, along with the highest rate of sea ice loss. These physical changes are affecting a broad array of resident Arctic organisms as well as some migrants that occupy the region seasonally. Herein, evidence of climate change impacts on terrestrial and marine wildlife in Svalbard is reviewed, with a focus on bird and mammal species. In the terrestrial ecosystem, increased winter air temperatures and concomitant increases in the frequency of 'rain-on-snow' events are one of the most important facets of climate change with respect to impacts on flora and fauna. Winter rain creates ice that blocks access to food for herbivores and synchronizes the population dynamics of the herbivore-predator guild. In the marine ecosystem, increases in sea temperature and reductions in sea ice are influencing the entire food web. These changes are affecting the foraging and breeding ecology of most marine birds and mammals and are associated with an increase in abundance of several temperate fish, seabird and marine mammal species. Our review indicates that even though a few species are benefiting from a warming climate, most Arctic endemic species in Svalbard are experiencing negative consequences induced by the warming environment. Our review emphasizes the tight relationships between the marine and terrestrial ecosystems in this High Arctic archipelago. Detecting changes in trophic relationships within and between these ecosystems requires long-term (multidecadal) demographic, population- and ecosystem-based monitoring, the results of which are necessary to set appropriate conservation priorities in relation to climate warming.

  19. 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.

  20. Sources of inorganic and monomethyl mercury to high and sub Arctic marine ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirk, Jane Liza

    Monomethyl mercury (MMHg), a toxic and bioaccumulative form of Hg, is present in some Canadian high and sub Arctic marine mammals at concentrations high enough to pose health risks to Northern peoples using these animals as food. To quantify potentially large sources of Hg to Arctic marine ecosystems, we examined several aspects of Hg cycling in the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (CAA) and Hudson Bay. Firstly, we quantified net Hg inputs to Hudson Bay from atmospheric Hg depletion events (AMDEs). During AMDEs, gaseous elemental Hg(0) (GEM), which is present in the Arctic atmosphere at global background concentrations, is oxidized to inorganic Hg(II) species that deposit to snowpacks. By simultaneously monitoring Hg in the atmosphere and in snowpacks of western Hudson Bay, we demonstrated that most of the Hg(II) deposited during AMDEs is rapidly (photo)reduced and emitted to the atmosphere. Secondly, we examined Hg speciation in marine waters of the CAA and Hudson Bay. We found high concentrations of MMHg and dimethyl Hg (DMHg; a toxic, gaseous form of Hg) in deep marine waters, where they are likely produced from Hg(II). Arctic marine waters were also found to be a substantial source of DMHg and GEM to the atmosphere. Thirdly, we quantified Hg exports to Hudson Bay from two major rivers, the Nelson and the Churchill, which have been altered for hydroelectric power production. When landscapes are inundated during river diversion or reservoir creation, microbial production of MMHg is stimulated in flooded soils. Newly produced MMHg can then be exported to downstream waterbodies. We found that annual inputs of total Hg (THg; includes both Hg(II) and MMHg) to Hudson Bay from combined Nelson and Churchill River discharge were comparable to inputs from AMDEs. MMHg inputs from river discharge are, however, ˜13 times greater than those from annual snowmelt of Hudson Bay snowpacks. Finally, although combined river and AMDE Hg inputs may account for a large portion of the THg

  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......-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...... limits the growth of Cassiope but not that of Salix in North-Eastern Greenland. Summer warming thus has the potential to stimulate biomass production in the High Arctic but major species-specific differences are expected....

  2. Biogenic volatile organic compound emissions along a high arctic soil moisture gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Svendsen, Sarah Hagel; Lindwall, Frida; Michelsen, Anders; Rinnan, Riikka

    2016-12-15

    Emissions of biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) from terrestrial ecosystems are important for the atmospheric chemistry and the formation of secondary organic aerosols, and may therefore influence the climate. Global warming is predicted to change patterns in precipitation and plant species compositions, especially in arctic regions where the temperature increase will be most pronounced. These changes are potentially highly important for the BVOC emissions but studies investigating the effects are lacking. The aim of this study was to investigate the quality and quantity of BVOC emissions from a high arctic soil moisture gradient extending from dry tundra to a wet fen. Ecosystem BVOC emissions were sampled five times in the July-August period using a push-pull enclosure technique, and BVOCs trapped in absorbent cartridges were analyzed using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Plant species compositions were estimated using the point intercept method. In order to take into account important underlying ecosystem processes, gross ecosystem production, ecosystem respiration and net ecosystem production were measured in connection with chamber-based BVOC measurements. Highest emissions of BVOCs were found from vegetation communities dominated by Salix arctica and Cassiope tetragona, which had emission profiles dominated by isoprene and monoterpenes, respectively. These results show that emissions of BVOCs are highly dependent on the plant cover supported by the varying soil moisture, suggesting that high arctic BVOC emissions may affect the climate differently if soil water content and plant cover change.

  3. 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...

  4. 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

  5. Rapid Collapse of the Vavilov Ice Cap, Russian High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willis, M. J.; Zheng, W.; Durkin, W. J., IV; Pritchard, M. E.; Ramage, J. M.; Dowdeswell, J. A.; Benham, T. J.; Glazovsky, A.; Macheret, Y.; Porter, C. C.

    2016-12-01

    Cold based ice caps and glaciers are thought to respond slowly to environmental changes. As sea ice cover evolves in the Arctic, a feedback process alters air-temperatures and precipitation patterns across the region. During the last decades of the 20th century the land-terminating western margin of the Vavilov Ice Cap, on October Revolution Island of the Severnaya Zemlya Archipelago, advanced slowly westwards. The advance was driven by precipitation changes that occurred about half a millennia ago. InSAR shows that in 1996 the margin sustained ice speeds of around 20 m/yr. By 2000 the ice front had moved a short distance into the Kara Sea and had transitioned to a marine-terminating front, although an ice apron around the ice margin indicates the ice there was still frozen to the bed and there is no evidence of calving in satellite imagery. In 2013 ice motions near the terminus had accelerated to around 1 m/day. By late 2015 the main trunk of the newly activated outlet glacier attained speeds of 25 m/day and the inland portion of the ice cap thinned at rates of more than 0.3 m/day. The acceleration of the outlet glacier occurred due to its advance over weak, water-saturated marine sediments that provide little resistance to ice flow, and to the removal of lateral resistive stresses as the glacier advanced out into an open embayment. Longitudinal stretching at the front forces an increase in the surface slope upstream. Rapid rates of motion inland generate frictional melt at the bed, possibly aided by cryohydrological warming. Large areas of the interior of the Vavilov ice cap are now below the equilibrium line and the grounded portion of the ice cap is losing mass at a rate of 4.5 km3 w.e./year. The changes at the Vavilov are likely irrecoverable in a warming climate due to a reduction in the accumulation area of the ice cap. Increased precipitation drove the advance, which accelerated due to the presence of soft sediments. The acceleration lowered the elevation

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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...

  9. Characterizing Arctic sea ice topography using high-resolution IceBridge data

    OpenAIRE

    Petty, Alek A.; Tsamados, Michel C.; Kurtz, Nathan T.; Farrell, Sinead L.; Newman, Thomas; Harbeck, Jeremy P.; FELTHAM, DANIEL L.; Richter-Menge, Jackie A.

    2015-01-01

    We present an analysis of Arctic sea ice topography using high resolution, three-dimensional, surface elevation data from the Airborne Topographic Mapper, flown as part of NASA's Operation IceBridge mission. Surface features in the sea ice cover are detected using a newly developed surface feature picking algorithm. We derive information regarding the height, volume and geometry of surface features from 2009–2014 within the Beaufort/Chukchi and Central Arcti...

  10. Modeling seasonal velocity variability and assessing the influence of glacial hydrology and sea-ice buttressing at the Belcher Glacier, Arctic Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pimentel, S.; Flowers, G. E.; Boon, S.; Clavano, W.; Copland, L.; Danielson, B.; Duncan, A.; Kavanaugh, J. L.; Sharp, M. J.; van Wychen, W. D.

    2011-12-01

    Seasonal ice dynamics on marine outlet glaciers can be influenced by the effects of both glacial hydrology and sea-ice buttressing. In summer surface meltwater finds its way through crevasses and moulins into the subglacial drainage system thereby modulating the extent of glacier sliding. Whereas in winter sea-ice build-up in front of the glacier terminus provides a buttressing effect exerting a back stress on the glacier ice. In this study we seek to distinguish between contributions from these two processes at a large fast-flowing tidewater-terminating Arctic glacier. The Belcher Glacier is the largest outlet glacier of the Devon Island Ice Cap in the Canadian high-Arctic. We employ the use of a hydrologically coupled higher-order ice-flow model together with field data collected in 2008 and 2009. Model output is compared against surface GPS observations as well as remotely sensed velocities derived using speckle tracking methods on Radarsat-2 imagery. Five major drainage sub-catchments have been identified on the Belcher and a melt model is used to generate daily surface runoff for each sub-catchment. The observed timing of lake drainage and moulin openings in each sub-catchment allow a seasonal timeseries of meltwater inputs to the subglacial drainage system to be constructed. Model simulations for 2008 and 2009 forced with this meltwater input timeseries are presented. Model responses to tidal forcing and changes in sea-ice back stress at the terminus are examined and compared alongside hydrologically driven accelerations.

  11. Continuous daylight in the high-Arctic summer supports high plankton respiration rates compared to those supported in the dark

    KAUST Repository

    Mesa, Elena

    2017-04-21

    Plankton respiration rate is a major component of global CO2 production and is forecasted to increase rapidly in the Arctic with warming. Yet, existing assessments in the Arctic evaluated plankton respiration in the dark. Evidence that plankton respiration may be stimulated in the light is particularly relevant for the high Arctic where plankton communities experience continuous daylight in spring and summer. Here we demonstrate that plankton community respiration evaluated under the continuous daylight conditions present in situ, tends to be higher than that evaluated in the dark. The ratio between community respiration measured in the light (Rlight) and in the dark (Rdark) increased as the 2/3 power of Rlight so that the Rlight:Rdark ratio increased from an average value of 1.37 at the median Rlight measured here (3.62 µmol O2 L-1 d-1) to an average value of 17.56 at the highest Rlight measured here (15.8 µmol O2 L-1 d-1). The role of respiratory processes as a source of CO2 in the Arctic has, therefore, been underestimated and is far more important than previously believed, particularly in the late spring, with 24 h photoperiods, when community respiration rates are highest.

  12. Astronomical seeing and ground-layer turbulence in the Canadian High Arctic

    CERN Document Server

    Hickson, P; Pfrommer, T; Steinbring, E

    2013-01-01

    We report results of a two-year campaign of measurements, during arctic winter darkness, of optical turbulence in the atmospheric boundary-layer above the Polar Environment Atmospheric Laboratory in northern Ellesmere Island (latitude +80 deg N). The data reveal that the ground-layer turbulence in the Arctic is often quite weak, even at the comparatively-low 610 m altitude of this site. The median and 25th percentile ground-layer seeing, at a height of 20 m, are found to be 0.57 and 0.25 arcsec, respectively. When combined with a free-atmosphere component of 0.30 arcsec, the median and 25th percentile total seeing for this height is 0.68 and 0.42 arcsec respectively. The median total seeing from a height of 7 m is estimated to be 0.81 arcsec. These values are comparable to those found at the best high-altitude astronomical sites.

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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...

  16. 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...... for some species. Responses to cold-season soil warming are vegetation type- and species-specific, with potentially stronger responses in moister vegetation types. This study therefore highlights the contrasting effect of snow in a tundra landscape and has important implications for projections of whole...

  17. 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.

  18. The active methanotrophic community in a wetland from the High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graef, Christiane; Hestnes, Anne Grethe; Svenning, Mette Marianne; Frenzel, Peter

    2011-08-01

    The dominant terminal process of carbon mineralization in most freshwater wetlands is methanogenesis. With methane being an important greenhouse gas, the predicted warming of the Arctic may provide a positive feedback. However, the amount of methane released to the atmosphere may be controlled by the activity of methane-oxidizing bacteria (methanotrophs) living in the oxic surface layer of wetlands. Previously, methanotrophs have been isolated and identified by genetic profiling in High Arctic wetlands showing the presence of only a few genotypes. Two isolates from Solvatnet (Ny-Ålesund, Spitsbergen; 79°N) are available: Methylobacter tundripaludum (type I) and Methylocystis rosea (type II), raising the question whether the low diversity is a cultivation effect. We have revisited Solvatnet applying stable isotope probing (SIP) with (13) C-labelled methane. 16S rRNA profiling revealed active type I methanotrophs including M. tundripaludum, while no active type II methanotrophs were identified. These results indicate that the extant M. tundripaludum is an active methane oxidizer at its locus typicus; furthermore, Methylobacter seems to be the dominant active genus. Diversity of methanotrophs was low as compared, e.g. to wetland rice fields in the Mediterranean. This low diversity suggests a high vulnerability of Arctic methanotroph communities, which deserves more attention.

  19. 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

  20. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swann, Abigail L; Fung, Inez Y; Levis, Samuel; Bonan, Gordon B; Doney, Scott C

    2010-01-26

    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 northern latitudes. We find that the top-of-atmosphere radiative imbalance from enhanced transpiration (associated with the expanded forest cover) is up to 1.5 times larger than the forcing due to albedo change from the forest. Furthermore, the greenhouse warming by additional water vapor melts sea-ice and triggers a positive feedback through changes in ocean albedo and evaporation. Land surface albedo change is considered to be the dominant mechanism by which trees directly modify climate at high-latitudes, but our findings suggest an additional mechanism through transpiration of water vapor and feedbacks from the ocean and sea-ice.

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. Winter temperature conditions (1670-2010) reconstructed from varved sediments, western Canadian High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amann, Benjamin; Lamoureux, Scott F.; Boreux, Maxime P.

    2017-09-01

    Advances in paleoclimatology from the Arctic have provided insights into long-term climate conditions. However, while past annual and summer temperature have received considerable research attention, comparatively little is known about winter paleoclimate. Arctic winter is of special interest as it is the season with the highest sensitivity to climate change, and because it differs substantially from summer and annual measures. Therefore, information about past changes in winter climate is key to improve our knowledge of past forced climate variability and to reduce uncertainty in climate projections. In this context, Arctic lakes with snowmelt-fed catchments are excellent potential winter climate archives. They respond strongly to snowmelt-induced runoff, and indirectly to winter temperature and snowfall conditions. To date, only a few well-calibrated lake sediment records exist, which appear to reflect site-specific responses with differing reconstructions. This limits the possibility to resolve large-scale winter climate change prior the instrumental period. Here, we present a well-calibrated quantitative temperature and snowfall record for the extended winter season (November through March; NDJFM) from Chevalier Bay (Melville Island, NWT, Canadian Arctic) back to CE 1670. The coastal embayment has a large catchment influenced by nival terrestrial processes, which leads to high sedimentation rates and annual sedimentary structures (varves). Using detailed microstratigraphic analysis from two sediment cores and supported by μ-XRF data, we separated the nival sedimentary units (spring snowmelt) from the rainfall units (summer) and identified subaqueous slumps. Statistical correlation analysis between the proxy data and monthly climate variables reveals that the thickness of the nival units can be used to predict winter temperature (r = 0.71, pc research such as data-model comparisons and proxy-data assimilation in climate model simulations.

  7. The Unexpected Re-Growth of Ice-Entombed Bryophytes in the Canadian High Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    La Farge, C.

    2014-12-01

    The rapid retreat of glaciers and ice caps throughout the Canadian Arctic is exposing pristine vegetation preserved beneath cold-based ice. For the past half century this vegetation has been consistently reported as dead. This interpretation has been overturned by the successful re-growth of Little Ice Age (1550-1850 AD) bryophytes emerging from the Teardrop Glacier, Sverdrup Pass, Ellesmere Island (79° N) collected in 2009. Some populations showed regeneration in the field and lab experiments confirmed their capacity to regrow. The species richness of these subglacial populations is exceptional, comprising >62 species that represent 44% of the extant bryophyte flora of Sverdrup Pass. Cold-based glaciers are known to provide critical habitats for a variety of microbiota (i.e., fungi, algae, cyanobacteria, bacteria and viruses) in high latitude ecosystems. The regeneration of Little Ice Age bryophytes fundamentally expands the concept of biological refugia to land plants that was previously restricted to survival above and beyond glacial margins. Given this novel understanding of subglacial ecosystems, fieldwork is now being extended southward to plateau ice caps on Baffin Island, Nunavut, where ice retreat is exposing subglacial populations of greater antiquity (thousands to tens of thousands of radiocarbon years before present). Bryophytes by nature are totipotent (stem cell equivalency) and poikilohydric (desiccation tolerance), which facilitate their unique adaptation to extreme environments. Continuity of the Arctic bryophyte flora extends back through the Holocene to the late Tertiary [Beaufort Fm, 2-5 Ma], when the majority of taxa were the same, based on records spanning the archipelago from Ellesmere to Banks Island. This record contrasts with that of vascular plants, which have had a number of extinctions, necessitating recolonization of arctic populations from outside the region. The biological significance of a stable bryophyte element highlights their

  8. 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...

  9. 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

  10. Nutrient Limitations Constrain the Feedback Capacity of Landscapes in the High Arctic: Nonlinearities and Synergism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arens, S. J.; Sullivan, P. F.; Welker, J. M.; Rogers, M. C.; Holland, K.; Schimel, J.; Persson, K.

    2006-12-01

    Nutrient availability appears to be a controlling factor in the structure and function of High Arctic terrestrial systems as depicted by biological hot spots such as bird cliffs which are found throughout the arctic. Understanding the processes by which nutrients control plant production, canopy structure, and ecosystem carbon cycling have been well studied in the Low Arctic, where fertilization experiments have been employed for decades. Few studies have examined how the amount and type of nutrient augmentations (fertilization) affects the magnitude and pattern of CO2 exchange, species composition and optical properties of prostrate dwarf-shrub, herb tundra, the largest ecosystem in the High Arctic. In this study, amendments of three levels of nitrogen (N) (0.5 g/m2, 1.0 g/m2 and 5.0 g/m2) phosphorus (P) (2.5 g/m2) were initiated in prostrate dwarf- shrub, herb tundra near Pituffik (Thule), Greenland (76¢ªN, 68¢ªW). Species composition, net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE), gross primary photosynthesis (GPP), ecosystem respiration (ER) and plot-level normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) were used to quantify changes in ecosystem structure and function. Non- linear responses to the addition of different levels of N were observed. CO2 gas exchange and NDVI showed indicated the strongest response at middle levels of N addition (1.0 g/m2). Strong and synergystic responses to the combined addition of nitrogen and phosphorus were observed. Increases in vegetation density and a shift in species composition were observed when N and P were added to these systems, partially explaining the near doubling of NDVI values from 0.3 to 0.6. Rates of NEE, GPP and ER were significantly higher when N and P were combined compared to independent additions of each or when compared to non-fertilized areas. Our results indicate that feedback processes such as CO2 exchange, optical properties and vegetation composition and structure are co-limited by N and P and that the addition

  11. Summertime distribution of PAN and other reactive nitrogen species in the northern high-latitude atmosphere of eastern Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Singh, H. B.; Herlth, D.; O'Hara, D.; Zahnle, K.; Bradshaw, J. D.; Sandholm, S. T.; Talbot, R.; Gregory, G. L.; Sachse, G. W.; Blake, D. R.

    1994-01-01

    Aircraft measurements of key reactive nitrogen species (NO, NO2, HNO3, PAN, PPN, NO3(-), NO(y)), C1 to C6 hydrocarbons, acetone, O3, chemical tracers (C2Cl4, CO), and important meteorological parameters were performed over eastern Canada during July to August 1990 at altitudes between 0 and 6 km as part of an Arctic Boundary Layer Expedition (ABLE3B). In the free troposphere, PAN was found to be the single most abundant reactive nitrogen species constituting a major fraction of NO(y) and was significantly more abundant than NO(x) and HNO3. PAN and O3 were well correlated both in their fine and gross structures. Compared to data previously collected in the Arctic/subarctic atmosphere over Alaska (ABLE3A), the lower troposphere (0-4 km) over eastern Canada was found to contain larger reactive nitrogen and anthropogenic tracer concentrations. At higher altitudes (4-6 km) the atmospheric composition was in many ways similar to what was seen over Alaska and supports the view that a large-scale reservoir of PAN (and NO(y)) is present in the upper troposphere over the entire Arctic/subarctic region. The reactive nitrogen budget based on missions conducted from the North Bay site (missions 2-10) showed a small shortfall, whereas the budget for data collected from the Goose Bay operation (missions 11-19) showed essential balance. It is calculated that 15-20 ppt of the observed NO(x) may find its source from the available PAN reservoir. Meteorological considerations as well as relationships between reactive nitrogen and tracer species suggest that the atmosphere over eastern Canada during summer is greatly influenced by forest fires and transported industrial pollution.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garland, A.

    2015-12-01

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

  13. The High Arctic Magnetic High - The Geophysical Manifestation of a Large (1.36 x 10e6 km2) and Voluminous (5-10 x 10e6 km3) Igneous Province

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saltus, Richard; Oakey, Gordon; Miller, Elizabeth; Jackson, Ruth

    2013-04-01

    The High Arctic Magnetic High (HAMH) dominates the magnetic anomaly field of the Earth north of about 75°N; this magnetic domain consists of very high amplitude magnetic highs and lows with variable orientations. The HAMH is visible on satellite magnetic compilations (e.g., MF6) with anomaly amplitudes greater than 200 nT indicating it is a globally significant feature. The magnetic potential of this magnetic feature is a single large intensity high indicative of a large volume of magnetic material in the crust. The map area of this magnetic domain is roughly 1.36 x 10e6 km2. Geographically the HAMH lies within the Amerasian Basin adjacent to the Lomonosov Ridge, encompasses the region of the Alpha and Mendeleev Ridges, and extends beneath the northern portions of the Canada Basin. Ocean floor geomorphology, limited seismic and sonobouy data, sparse dredge samples, and dated samples from the perimeter of the Arctic Ocean are consistent with the interpretation of the HAMH as the geophysical manifestation of a Large Igneous Province. The designation "High Arctic Large Igneous Province (HALIP)" has been applied to portions of the Arctic perimeter based on geologic mapping and sampling. The designation "Alpha/Mendeleev Large Igneous Province (AMLIP)" has been applied to the offshore Alpha/Mendeleev region (e.g., Grantz et al., 2009) with boundaries defined, in large part, by magnetic anomaly patterns. We have constructed 2D and 3D models of the HAMH to investigate the structure and geometry of this significant crustal feature. We estimate the overall volume of magnetic material as between 5-10 x 10e6 km3. The area and volume of this feature are comparable with estimates for the Deccan Traps and the North Atlantic Igneous Province, but are significantly smaller than the Kerguellen or Ontong Java Plateaus (based on tables in Coffin and Eldholm, 1994). In detail we find significant correlation between shorter wavelength portions of this magnetic feature and the

  14. Glacier albedo change and its relationship to surface temperature change from MODIS data: Queen Elizabeth Islands, Arctic Canada, 2001-2015

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mortimer, C.; Sharp, M. J.

    2016-12-01

    Glacier and ice cap surface albedo change over the Canadian High Arctic is assessed using measurements from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) sensors for the period 2001-2015. Mean summer black-sky broadband surface albedo (MCD43A3 v05) over all glaciated surfaces in the Queen Elizabeth Islands south of 80°N decreased at a rate of 0.0038 ± 0.0037 yr-1 over that period. The bulk of this albedo decrease occurred from 2008 to 2012 when mean summer albedo was anomalously low. Albedo declines were greatest in the west of the QEI and at lower elevations on the ice caps. The period 2005-2012 included some of the warmest summers in the region since at least the 1950s. Between 2001 and 2015, mean summer glacier surface temperatures for the QEI (south of 80°N), derived from MODIS data (MOD11A2 v05), increased at a rate of 0.034 ± 0.037 °C yr-1. Net shortwave energy is modulated by changes in the surface albedo and is the largest source of summer melt energy in the QEI. During 2001-2015, the summer albedo record was negatively correlated with the mean summer glacier surface temperature record across 91% of the region; clusters of positive correlations between surface temperature and albedo were observed at high elevations in eastern Ellesmere Island.

  15. Can Canada Avoid Arctic Militarization?

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-05-20

    and Icebergs : Defining Canadian Sovereignty from Mackenzie King to Stephen Harper. Calgary, AB: Centre for Military and Strategic Studies, 2008...Lamborn, Alan C. “ Theory and the Politics in World Politics.” International Studies Quarterly 41, no. 2 (1997): 187-214. Laserre, Frederic. China and the

  16. Arctic Sovereignty Disputes: International Relations Theory in the High North

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-12-01

    Sea USGS United States Geological Service xii THIS PAGE INTENTIONALLY LEFT BLANK xiii ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I would like to express...Osica, “The High North as a New Area of Cooperation and Rivalry,” Nowa Europa Special Issue, vol. 1, no. 4, 2010. 16 Northwest Passage indicates...Osica, Olaf. “The High North as a New Area of Cooperation and Rivalry.” Nowa Europa Special Issue, vol. I, no. 4, 2010. Regjeringen Norway. “Joint

  17. 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

    , as well as with the addition of freeze-dried Spirulina or individual high-molecular-weight polysaccharides. During 50°C incubation experiments, Arctic thermophiles catalysed extensive mineralization of the organic matter via extracellular enzymatic hydrolysis, fermentation and sulfate reduction. This high...... temperature-induced food chain mirrors sediment microbial processes occurring at cold in situ temperatures (near 0°C), yet it is catalysed by a completely different set of microorganisms. Using sulfate reduction rates (SRR) as a proxy for organic matter mineralization showed that differences in organic matter...

  18. Abrupt onset and intensification of the Little Ice Age in Arctic Canada linked to explosive volcanism and sea-ice/ocean feedbacks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, G. H.; Refsnider, K. A.; Zhong, Y.; Otto-Bliesner, B. L.; Lehman, S. J.; Southon, J. R.

    2011-12-01

    At high northern latitudes the most reliable monitors of summer temperature are glaciers and ice caps. Small ice caps are multi-decadal integrators of climate. Precise 14C dates on rooted vegetation exposed by recent recession of more than 70 different ice caps that have remained perpetually frozen to their beds since their inception date ice-cap inception at that site. Unlike valley glacier moraines that are not formed until long after the initial climate shift, entombed plants date the moment of a persistent summer cooling. The composite probability density function of the 138 calibrated 14C ages indicates that ice caps expanded in four discrete intervals within the past 2 ka, with the most abrupt ice-cap growth ~1250 AD following three centuries of relative warmth, and intensified ice expansion ~1450 AD, with maximum ice cover ~1850 AD. These intervals of sudden and sustained ice expansion coincide with the three most volcanically perturbed half centuries of the past millennium. Separating the impacts of solar and volcanic forcings in the late Holocene has been vexing because decades of low solar irradiance largely coincide with decades of frequent explosive volcanism. Transient simulations with a fully coupled climate model show that the main features of our proxy data can be matched by decadally paced explosive volcanism alone, perpetuated by feedbacks related to consequent sea-ice expansion and export into the northern North Atlantic. Exported sea ice cools and freshens surface waters there, leading to a reduction in the AMOC and consequently perpetuation of an expanded sea ice state. The coincidence of low decadal solar irradiance with decades of explosive volcanism suggests that volcanic impacts may have been amplified by solar variability, but scaling the proxies of past solar irradiance remains uncertain. The persistence in the Eastern Canadian Arctic of some ice caps that formed 5000 years ago and remained intact until melting in the past decade

  19. Diversity and Distribution of Aquatic Fungal Communities in the Ny-Ålesund Region, Svalbard (High Arctic): Aquatic Fungi in the Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Tao; Wang, Neng-Fei; Zhang, Yu-Qin; Liu, Hong-Yu; Yu, Li-Yan

    2016-04-01

    We assessed the diversity and distribution of fungi in 13 water samples collected from four aquatic environments (stream, pond, melting ice water, and estuary) in the Ny-Ålesund Region, Svalbard (High Arctic) using 454 pyrosequencing with fungi-specific primers targeting the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region of the ribosomal rRNA gene. Aquatic fungal communities in this region showed high diversity, with a total of 43,061 reads belonging to 641 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) being found. Of these OTUs, 200 belonged to Ascomycota, 196 to Chytridiomycota, 120 to Basidiomycota, 13 to Glomeromycota, and 10 to early diverging fungal lineages (traditional Zygomycota), whereas 102 belonged to unknown fungi. The major orders were Helotiales, Eurotiales, and Pleosporales in Ascomycota; Chytridiales and Rhizophydiales in Chytridiomycota; and Leucosporidiales and Sporidiobolales in Basidiomycota. The common fungal genera Penicillium, Rhodotorula, Epicoccum, Glaciozyma, Holtermanniella, Betamyces, and Phoma were identified. Interestingly, the four aquatic environments in this region harbored different aquatic fungal communities. Salinity, conductivity, and temperature were important factors in determining the aquatic fungal diversity and community composition. The results suggest the presence of diverse fungal communities and a considerable number of potentially novel fungal species in Arctic aquatic environments, which can provide reliable data for studying the ecological and evolutionary responses of fungi to climate change in the Arctic ecosystem.

  20. What are the toxicological effects of mercury in Arctic biota?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dietz, Rune; Sonne, Christian; Basu, Niladri

    2012-01-01

    This review critically evaluates the available mercury (Hg) data in Arctic marine biota and the Inuit population against toxicity threshold values. In particular marine top predators exhibit concentrations of mercury in their tissues and organs that are believed to exceed thresholds for biological...... to be one of the most vulnerable groups, with high concentrations of mercury recorded in brain tissue with associated signs of neurochemical effects. Evidence of increasing concentrations in mercury in some biota in Arctic Canada and Greenland is therefore a concern with respect to ecosystem health....

  1. Freshwater variability in the Arctic: Tracing freshwater sources and quantities from 2005 to 2011 in a transect from Ellesmere Island, Canada to the North Pole

    Science.gov (United States)

    Motz, E. A.; Smethie, W. M.

    2011-12-01

    The Switchyard project has gathered data across the Canadian Basin to determine the Arctic Ocean's fractional freshwater composition from three sources: Pacific water, meteoric water (river runoff and precipitation), and sea ice melt water. With a database of the project extending to 2005 as well as using earlier projects' data to date back further, we can view trends and visualize changes in the freshwater content of the Arctic Ocean. In the past decade the Arctic has experienced increases in freshwater with the largest increases from meteoric fractions. In 2008 there was a major increase in meteoric water and decreases in Pacific freshwater fractions. This could be related to the extreme decrease in summer sea ice of 2007. Freshwater inventories across the Canadian Basin vary over the years and show a relationship in the mixed layer of increasing when the Arctic Oscillation (AO) is positive and freshwater is released from the Beaufort Gyre.1 Increases in the quantity of freshwater in the Arctic could lead to greater freshwater exports to the North Atlantic Ocean. This can inhibit the formation of North Atlantic Deep Water and so affect the global thermohaline circulation which moderates much of our planet's climate.2 1 Jones et al. 2008, Pacific freshwater, river water and sea ice meltwater across Arctic Ocean basins: Results from the 2005 Beringia Expedition, Journal of Geophysical Research vol 113, C08012, doi:10.1029/2007JC004124. 32Morison et al. 1998, Hydrography of the upper Arctic Ocean measured from the nuclear submarine U.S.S. Pargo, Deep Sea Research Part I, vol 45, 15-38.

  2. Heavy metal bioaccumulation and histopathological alterations in wild Arctic hares (Lepus arcticus) inhabiting a former lead-zinc mine in the Canadian high Arctic: A preliminary study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amuno, S; Niyogi, S; Amuno, M; Attitaq, J

    2016-06-15

    A preliminary study was undertaken to determine post-mining baseline accumulation of selected trace metals, and histopathological alterations in free-living arctic hares (Lepus arcticus) inhabiting the vicinity of a former lead-zinc mine located on North Baffin Island in the Canadian High Arctic. Trace metal analysis included measurement of As, Cd, Fe, Pb and Zn in tissues, and histopathological assessment comprised of evaluation and scoring the severity of metal-induced hepatic and renal lesions. Metal contents in hepatic and renal tissues from hares from the mine area compared with the reference locations did not differ significantly suggesting that the animals are not uniformly exposed to background levels of metals in the environment. However, relatively higher accumulation pattern of Pb and Cd were noted in liver tissues of hare from the mine area compared to the background area, but did not induce increased lesions. Surface soils near the mine area contained relatively higher levels of trace metals (Zn>Mn>Pb>Cd>As) compared to reference soils, and with soil levels of Cd showing strong correlation with Cd accumulation in kidney tissues. Generally, both case and reference animals showed similar but varying severities of hepatic and renal lesions at the sublethal level, notably vascular congestion, occasional large hepatocyte nuclei, binucleate hepatocytes, yellow-brown pigmentation in the cytoplasm of hepatocytes and clustering of lymphocytes. Only hares with relatively higher accumulation of Pb from the mine area showed evidence of renal edema and hemorrhage of the capsular surface. This study constitutes the first assessment of metal induced histopathological alterations in arctic hares exposed to a historical mining area in the high arctic.

  3. The Evolving Arctic: Current State of U.S. Arctic Policy

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-09-01

    obvious that improvements need to be made to guard U.S. interests While the U.S. procrastinates in taking its rightful place in the Arctic, Russia...foreign policy priority.87 1. Exercising Arctic Sovereignty As an Arctic nation, Canada firmly understands the importance of ensuring and...domain awareness in the region.88 In May 2010, Canadian and Danish military leaders signed a memorandum of understanding on Arctic defense, security

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-12-01

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

  5. 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.

  6. Sediment dynamics in paired High Arctic lakes revealed from high-resolution swath bathymetry and acoustic stratigraphy surveys

    Science.gov (United States)

    Normandeau, A.; Lamoureux, S. F.; Lajeunesse, P.; Francus, P.

    2016-09-01

    High Arctic lakes are commonly used for paleoclimatic reconstructions because they are particularly sensitive to climate variability. However, the processes leading to sediment deposition and distribution in these lakes are often poorly understood. Here for the first time in the Canadian High Arctic, we present original data resulting from swath bathymetry and subbottom surveys carried out on two lakes at Cape Bounty, Melville Island. The results reveal the dynamic nature of the lakes, in which mass movement deposits and bedforms on the deltas reflect frequent slope instabilities and hyperpycnal flow activity. The analysis of the mass movement deposits reveals that small blocky debris flows/avalanches, debris flows, and a slide occurred during the Holocene. These mass movements are believed to have been triggered by earthquakes and potentially by permafrost thawing along the shoreline. Altogether, these mass movement deposits cover more than 30% of the lake floors. Additionally, the river deltas on both lakes were mapped and reveal the presence of several gullies and bedforms. The presence of gullies along the delta front indicates that hyperpycnal flows generated at the river mouth can transport sediment in different trajectories downslope, resulting in a different sediment accumulation pattern and record. The dynamic nature of these two lakes suggests that further analysis on sediment transport and distribution within Arctic lakes is required in order to improve paleoclimatic reconstructions.

  7. Deep-ocean predation by a high Arctic cetacean

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laidre, K.L.; Heide-Jørgensen, M.P.; Jørgensen, Ole A

    2004-01-01

    A bioenergetic model for two narwhal (Monodon monoceros) sub-populations was developed to quantify daily gross energy requirements and estimate the biomass of Greenland halibut (Reinhardtius hippoglossoides) needed to sustain the sub-populations for their 5-month stay on wintering grounds in Baffin...... Bay. Whales in two separate wintering grounds were estimated to require 700 tonnes (s.e. 300) and 90 tonnes (s.e. 40) of Greenland halibut per day, assuming a diet of 50% Greenland halibut. Mean densities and length distributions of Greenland halibut inside and outside of the narwhal wintering grounds...... were correlated with predicted whale predation levels based on diving behavior. The difference in Greenland halibut biomass between an area with high predation and a comparable area without whales, approximately 19000 tonnes, corresponded well with the predicted biomass removed by the narwhal sub...

  8. Seasonal narwhal habitat associations in the high Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Laidre, K.L.; Heide-Jørgensen, M.P.; Logdson, M.L.

    2004-01-01

    grounds often coincided with areas of concurrent high density of Greenland halibut (Reinhardtius hippoglossoides, Walbaum) and predictable open water in winter pack ice in Baffin Bay. These quantitative habitat models made it possible to reconcile the behavioral traits of narwhals with dynamic...... and 2000 and fitted with satellite-linked time-depth recorders. Geographic positions of whales at 24-h time steps were linked to dive behavior variables compressed on a daily scale, including numbers of dives to different target depths or durations, time near the surface, daily dive rate, and travel speed....... Whale movements and behavior were linked to biophysical variables in a raster format using a GIS (bathymetry, bottom topography, bottom temperature, and distance from the coastline) and analyzed using linear and generalized linear mixed models, accounting for temporal autocorrelation and random...

  9. Dependence of Arctic climate on the latitudinal position of stationary waves and to high-latitudes surface warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shin, Yechul; Kang, Sarah M.; Watanabe, Masahiro

    2017-02-01

    Previous studies suggest large uncertainties in the stationary wave response under global warming. Here, we investigate how the Arctic climate responds to changes in the latitudinal position of stationary waves, and to high-latitudes surface warming that mimics the effect of Arctic sea ice loss under global warming. To generate stationary waves in an atmospheric model coupled to slab ocean, a series of experiments is performed where the thermal forcing with a zonal wavenumber-2 (with zero zonal-mean) is prescribed at the surface at different latitude bands in the Northern Hemisphere. When the stationary waves are generated in the subtropics, the cooling response dominates over the warming response in the lower troposphere due to cloud radiative effects. Then, the low-level baroclinicity is reduced in the subtropics, which gives rise to a poleward shift of the eddy driven jet, thereby inducing substantial cooling in the northern high latitudes. As the stationary waves are progressively generated at higher latitudes, the zonal-mean climate state gradually becomes more similar to the integration with no stationary waves. These differences in the mean climate affect the Arctic climate response to high-latitudes surface warming. Additional surface heating over the Arctic is imposed to the reference climates in which the stationary waves are located at different latitude bands. When the stationary waves are positioned at lower latitudes, the eddy driven jet is located at higher latitude, closer to the prescribed Arctic heating. As baroclinicity is more effectively perturbed, the jet shifts more equatorward that accompanies a larger reduction in the poleward eddy transport of heat and momentum. A stronger eddy-induced descending motion creates greater warming over the Arctic. Our study calls for a more accurate simulation of the present-day stationary wave pattern to enhance the predictability of the Arctic warming response in a changing climate.

  10. Quantifying snow and vegetation interactions in the high arctic based on ground penetrating radar (GPR)

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gacitúa, G.; Bay, C.; Tamstorf, M.

    2013-01-01

    The quantification of the relationship between accumulation of snow and vegetation is crucial for understanding the influence of vegetation dynamics. We here present an analysis of the thickness of the snow and hydrological availability in relation to the seven main vegetation types in the High...... 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...

  11. Magmatism and Eurekan deformation in the High Arctic Large Igneous Province

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tegner, Christian; Storey, Michael; Holm, Paul Martin

    2011-01-01

    in the Northeast Atlantic resulted in spreading and volcanism (61– 25 Ma) on both sides of Greenland, pushing Greenland northwards relative to North America. The tectonic setting in the High Arctic thus changed from extensional to compressional and volcanic activity was terminated. Evaluation of plate kinematic...... perthite feldspars and coeval resetting of Rb–Sr isotopes by hydrothermal fluids provide further support for thermal overprinting. This thermal event is interpreted as a result of compressional tectonism of the Kap Cannon Thrust Zone in which older Palaeozoic metasediments were thrusted northwards over...

  12. Black Carbon Sources Constrained by Observations in the Russian High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popovicheva, Olga B; Evangeliou, Nikolaos; Eleftheriadis, Konstantinos; Kalogridis, Athina C; Sitnikov, Nikolay; Eckhardt, Sabine; Stohl, Andreas

    2017-04-04

    Understanding the role of short-lived climate forcers such as black carbon (BC) at high northern latitudes in climate change is hampered by the scarcity of surface observations in the Russian Arctic. In this study, highly time-resolved Equivalent BC (EBC) measurements during a ship campaign in the White, Barents, and Kara Seas in October 2015 are presented. The measured EBC concentrations are compared with BC concentrations simulated with a Lagrangian particle dispersion model coupled with a recently completed global emission inventory to quantify the origin of the Arctic BC. EBC showed increased values (100-400 ng m(-3)) in the Kara Strait, Kara Sea, and Kola Peninsula and an extremely high concentration (1000 ng m(-3)) in the White Sea. Assessment of BC origin throughout the expedition showed that gas-flaring emissions from the Yamal-Khanty-Mansiysk and Nenets-Komi regions contributed the most when the ship was close to the Kara Strait, north of 70° N. Near Arkhangelsk (White Sea), biomass burning in mid-latitudes, surface transportation, and residential and commercial combustion from Central and Eastern Europe were found to be important BC sources. The model reproduced observed EBC concentrations efficiently, building credibility in the emission inventory for BC emissions at high northern latitudes.

  13. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skrzypek, Grzegorz; Wojtuń, Bronisław; Richter, Dorota; Jakubas, Dariusz; Wojczulanis-Jakubas, Katarzyna; Samecka-Cymerman, Aleksandra

    2015-01-01

    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.

  15. 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.

  16. Novel sulfur-oxidizing streamers thriving in perennial cold saline springs of the Canadian high Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Niederberger, Thomas D; Perreault, Nancy N; Lawrence, John R; Nadeau, Jay L; Mielke, Randall E; Greer, Charles W; Andersen, Dale T; Whyte, Lyle G

    2009-03-01

    The perennial springs at Gypsum Hill (GH) and Colour Peak (CP), situated at nearly 80 degrees N on Axel Heiberg Island in the Canadian high Arctic, are one of the few known examples of cold springs in thick permafrost on Earth. The springs emanate from deep saline aquifers and discharge cold anoxic brines rich in both sulfide and sulfate. Grey-coloured microbial streamers form during the winter months in snow-covered regions of the GH spring run-off channels (-1.3 degrees C to 6.9 degrees C, approximately 7.5% NaCl, 0-20 p.p.m. dissolved sulfide, 1 p.p.m. dissolved oxygen) but disappear during the Arctic summer. Culture- and molecular-based analyses of the 16S rRNA gene (FISH, DGGE and clone libraries) indicated that the streamers were uniquely dominated by chemolithoautotrophic sulfur-oxidizing Thiomicrospira species. The streamers oxidized both sulfide and thiosulfate and fixed CO(2) under in situ conditions and a Thiomicrospira strain isolated from the streamers also actively oxidized sulfide and thiosulfate and fixed CO(2) under cold, saline conditions. Overall, the snow-covered spring channels appear to represent a unique polar saline microhabitat that protects and allows Thiomicrospira streamers to form and flourish via chemolithoautrophic, phototrophic-independent metabolism in a high Arctic winter environment characterized by air temperatures commonly below -40 degrees C and with an annual average air temperature of -15 degrees C. These results broaden our knowledge of the physical and chemical boundaries that define life on Earth and have astrobiological implications for the possibility of life existing under similar Martian conditions.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, Brage B.; Isaksen, Ketil; Benestad, Rasmus E.; Kohler, Jack; Pedersen, Åshild Ø.; Loe, Leif E.; Coulson, Stephen J.; Larsen, Jan Otto; Varpe, Øystein

    2014-11-01

    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.

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

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Choudhary, Sonal, E-mail: S.Choudhary@sheffield.ac.uk [Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TN (United Kingdom); Management School, University of Sheffield, Conduit Road, Sheffield S10 1FL (United Kingdom); Blaud, Aimeric [Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TN (United Kingdom); Osborn, A. Mark [Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TN (United Kingdom); School of Applied Sciences, RMIT University, PO Box 71, Bundoora, VIC 3083 (Australia); Press, Malcolm C. [School of Biosciences, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT (United Kingdom); Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, M15 6BH (United Kingdom); Phoenix, Gareth K. [Department of Animal and Plant Sciences, University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield S10 2TN (United Kingdom)

    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 {sup 15}N labelling experiment. In 2010, we simulated N depositions at rates of 0, 0.04, 0.4 and 1.2 g N m{sup −2} yr{sup −1}, applied as {sup 15}NH{sub 4}{sup 15}NO{sub 3} in Svalbard (79{sup °}N), during the summer. Separate applications of {sup 15}NO{sub 3}{sup −} and {sup 15}NH{sub 4}{sup +} were also made to determine the importance of N form in their retention. More than 95% of the total {sup 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 {sup 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 {sup 15}NO{sub 3}{sup −} than {sup 15}NH{sub 4}{sup +}, 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

  19. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stohl, A.; Berg, T.; Burkhart, J. F.; Fjæraa, A. M.; Forster, C.; Herber, A.; Hov, Ø.; Lunder, C.; McMillan, W. W.; Oltmans, S.; Shiobara, M.; Simpson, D.; Solberg, S.; Stebel, K.; Ström, J.; Tørseth, K.; Treffeisen, R.; Virkkunen, K.; Yttri, K. E.

    2006-10-01

    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 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 NyÅlesund, 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 enhanced. 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 NyÅlesund. 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 enhanced levels of potassium, sulphate, nitrate and ammonium ions, thus relating the discoloration to the deposition of the smoke

  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. Bioremediation of weathered petroleum hydrocarbon soil contamination in the Canadian High Arctic: laboratory and field studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanscartier, David; Laing, Tamsin; Reimer, Ken; Zeeb, Barbara

    2009-11-01

    The bioremediation of weathered medium- to high-molecular weight petroleum hydrocarbons (HCs) in the High Arctic was investigated. The polar desert climate, contaminant characteristics, and logistical constraints can make bioremediation of persistent HCs in the High Arctic challenging. Landfarming (0.3 m(3) plots) was tested in the field for three consecutive years with plots receiving very little maintenance. Application of surfactant and fertilizers, and passive warming using a greenhouse were investigated. The field study was complemented by a laboratory experiment to better understand HC removal mechanisms and limiting factors affecting bioremediation on site. Significant reduction of total petroleum HCs (TPH) was observed in both experiments. Preferential removal of compounds nC16 occurred, whereas in the field, TPH reduction was mainly limited to removal of compounds nC16 was observed in the fertilized field plots only. The greenhouse increased average soil temperatures and extended the treatment season but did not enhance bioremediation. Findings suggest that temperature and low moisture content affected biodegradation of HCs in the field. Little volatilization was measured in the laboratory, but this process may have been predominant in the field. Low-maintenance landfarming may be best suited for remediation of HCs compounds

  3. A Large Ornithurine Bird (Tingmiatornis arctica) from the Turonian High Arctic: Climatic and Evolutionary Implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bono, Richard K.; Clarke, Julia; Tarduno, John A.; Brinkman, Donald

    2016-12-01

    Bird fossils from Turonian (ca. 90 Ma) sediments of Axel Heiberg Island (High Canadian Arctic) are among the earliest North American records. The morphology of a large well-preserved humerus supports identification of a new volant, possibly diving, ornithurine species (Tingmiatornis arctica). The new bird fossils are part of a freshwater vertebrate fossil assemblage that documents a period of extreme climatic warmth without seasonal ice, with minimum mean annual temperatures of 14 °C. The extreme warmth allowed species expansion and establishment of an ecosystem more easily able to support large birds, especially in fresh water bodies such as those present in the Turonian High Arctic. Review of the high latitude distribution of Northern Hemisphere Mesozoic birds shows only ornithurine birds are known to have occupied these regions. We propose physiological differences in ornithurines such as growth rate may explain their latitudinal distribution especially as temperatures decline later in the Cretaceous. Distribution and physiology merit consideration as factors in their preferential survival of parts of one ornithurine lineage, Aves, through the K/Pg boundary.

  4. Managing scientific diving operations in a remote location: the Canadian high Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sayer, Martin D J; Küpper, Frithjof C; van West, Pieter; Wilson, Colin M; Brown, Hugh; Azzopardi, Elaine

    2013-12-01

    Global climate change is expected to alter the Arctic bioregion markedly in coming decades. As a result, monitoring of the expected and actual changes has assumed high scientific significance. Many marine science objectives are best supported with the use of scientific diving techniques. Some important keystone environments are located in extremely remote locations where land-based expeditions offer high flexibility and cost-effectiveness over ship-based operations. However, the extreme remoteness of some of these locations, coupled with complex and unreliable land, sea and air communications, means that there is rarely quick access (diving medical intervention or recompression. In 2009, a land based expedition to the north end of Baffin Island was undertaken with the specific aim of establishing an inventory of the diversity of seaweeds and their pathogens that was broadly representative of a high Arctic marine environment. This account highlights some of the logistical considerations taken on that expedition; specifically it outlines the non-recompression treatment pathway that would have been adopted in the event of a diver suffering decompression illness.

  5. 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.

  6. 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

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

    2008-11-01

    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, CO(2) 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% CH(4)) 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.

  13. High numbers of heat-loving bacteria found in cold Arctic Ocean

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Anon.

    2009-09-15

    This article reported on a study of subzero sediments in the Arctic Ocean off the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen where scientists from the University of Calgary detected high numbers of thermophilic bacteria. The spores may offer an opportunity to trace seepages of fluids from hot sub-seafloor habitats and potentially indicate undiscovered offshore petroleum reservoirs. The Arctic spores that appear to have been transported from deeper hot spots were revived during experimental incubations at 40 to 60 degrees Celsius. Ongoing surveys are expected to identify the source, or sources, of these misplaced microbes. Since these bacteria are anaerobic, their high abundance and steady supply into the sediments indicate they are coming from a large oxygen-free habitat. One possible source may be a deep pressurized oil reservoir from which upward-leaking hydrocarbons carry bacteria into overlying seawater. Another source could be related to fluid circulation through warm ocean crust at spreading ridges. The thermophiles may get carried out of the abyssal hot spots by ocean currents that disperse them to the cold sediments. The spores also offer insight for understanding how biodiversity is maintained by the passive dispersal of small cells over large distances.

  14. The last polar dinosaurs: high diversity of latest Cretaceous arctic dinosaurs in Russia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godefroit, Pascal; Golovneva, Lina; Shchepetov, Sergei; Garcia, Géraldine; Alekseev, Pavel

    2009-04-01

    A latest Cretaceous (68 to 65 million years ago) vertebrate microfossil assemblage discovered at Kakanaut in northeastern Russia reveals that dinosaurs were still highly diversified in Arctic regions just before the Cretaceous-Tertiary mass extinction event. Dinosaur eggshell fragments, belonging to hadrosaurids and non-avian theropods, indicate that at least several latest Cretaceous dinosaur taxa could reproduce in polar region and were probably year-round residents of high latitudes. Palaeobotanical data suggest that these polar dinosaurs lived in a temperate climate (mean annual temperature about 10 degrees C), but the climate was apparently too cold for amphibians and ectothermic reptiles. The high diversity of Late Maastrichtian dinosaurs in high latitudes, where ectotherms are absent, strongly questions hypotheses according to which dinosaur extinction was a result of temperature decline, caused or not by the Chicxulub impact.

  15. Ocean acidification in the Western Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cai, W.; Chen, B.; Chen, L.

    2011-12-01

    We report carbonate chemistry and ocean acidification status in the western Arctic Ocean from 65-88οN based on data collected in summer 2008 and 2010. In the marginal seas, surface waters have high pH and high carbonate saturation state (Ω) due to intensive biological uptake of CO2. In the southern Canada Basin, surface waters have low pH and low Ω due to the uptake of atmospheric CO2 and sea-ice melt. In the northern Arctic Ocean basin, there is no serious ocean acidification in surface water due to heavy ice-coverage but pH and Ω in the subsurface waters at the oxygen minimum and nutrient maximum zone (at 100-150 m) are low due mostly to respiration-derived CO2 and an increased biological production and export in surface waters. Such multitude responses of ocean carbonate chemistry (northern vs. southern basin, basins vs. margins, and surface vs. subsurface) to climate changes are unique to the Arctic Ocean system. We will explore biogeochemical control mechanisms on carbonate chemistry and ocean acidification in the Arctic Ocean environments in the context of recent warming and sea-ice retreat.

  16. Demographic population structure and fungal associations of plants colonizing High Arctic glacier forelands, Petuniabukta, Svalbard

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jakub Těšitel

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The development of vegetation in Arctic glacier forelands has been described as unidirectional, non-replacement succession characterized by the gradual establishment of species typical for mature tundra with no species turnover. Our study focused on two early colonizers of High Arctic glacier forelands: Saxifraga oppositifolia (Saxifragaceae and Braya purpurascens (Brassicaceae. While the first species is a common generalist also found in mature old growth tundra communities, the second specializes on disturbed substrate. The demographic population structures of the two study species were investigated along four glacier forelands in Petuniabukta, north Billefjorden, in central Spitsbergen, Svalbard. Young plants of both species occurred exclusively on young substrate, implying that soil conditions are favourable for establishment only before soil crusts develop. We show that while S. oppositifolia persists from pioneer successional stages and is characterized by increased size and flowering, B. purpurascens specializes on disturbed young substrate and does not follow the typical unidirectional, non-replacement succession pattern. Plants at two of the forelands were examined for the presence of root-associated fungi. Fungal genus Olpidium (Fungus incertae sedis was found along a whole successional gradient in one of the forelands.

  17. Emerging investigator series: a 14-year depositional ice record of perfluoroalkyl substances in the High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacInnis, John J; French, Katherine; Muir, Derek C G; Spencer, Christine; Criscitiello, Alison; De Silva, Amila O; Young, Cora J

    2017-01-25

    To improve understanding of long-range transport of perfluoroalkyl substances to the High Arctic, samples were collected from a snow pit on the Devon Ice Cap in spring 2008. Snow was analyzed for perfluoroalkyl acids (PFAAs), including perfluoroalkyl carboxylic acids (PFCAs) and perfluoroalkyl sulfonic acids (PFSAs), as well as perfluorooctane sulfonamide (FOSA). PFAAs were detected in all samples dated from 1993 to 2007. PFAA fluxes ranged from <1 to hundreds of ng per m(2) per year. Flux ratios of even-odd PFCA homologues were mostly between 0.5 and 2, corresponding to molar ratios expected from atmospheric oxidation of fluorotelomer compounds. Concentrations of perfluorobutanoic acid (PFBA) were much higher than other PFCAs, suggesting PFBA loading on the Devon Ice Cap is influenced by additional sources, such as the oxidation of heat transfer fluids. All PFCA fluxes increased with time, while PFSA fluxes generally decreased with time. No correlations were observed between PFAAs and the marine aerosol tracer, sodium. Perfluoro-4-ethylcyclohexanesulfonate (PFECHS) was detected for the first time in an atmospherically - derived sample, and its presence may be attributed to aircraft hydraulic system leakage. Observations of PFAAs from these samples provide further evidence that atmospheric oxidation of volatile precursors is an important source of PFAAs to the Arctic environment.

  18. 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...

  19. Diversity and characterization of mercury-resistant bacteria in snow, freshwater and sea-ice brine from the High Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Møller, Annette K; Barkay, Tamar; Abu Al-Soud, Waleed; Sørensen, Søren J; Skov, Henrik; Kroer, Niels

    2011-03-01

    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 Arctic food chains.

  20. Arctic Planning Scenarios: Scenario #1: Defence Scenario

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-07-01

    Arctic, it appeared ready for compromises. Minister Cannon did not rule out, after his talks in Moscow, that Canada and Russia could submit a joint...process. Russia’s national ambitions in the region have been summarised by Artur Chilingarov, an Arctic explorer and the State Duma’s vice-spokesman

  1. Arctic Ocean Pathways in the 21st century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aksenov, Yevgeny; van Gennip, Simon J.; Kelly, Stephen J.; Popova, Ekaterina E.; Yool, Andrew

    2017-04-01

    In the last three decades, changes in the Arctic environment have been occurring at an increasing rate. The opening up of large areas of previously sea ice-covered ocean affects the marine environment with potential impacts on Arctic ecosystems, including through changes in Arctic access, industries and societies. Changes to sea ice and surface winds result in large-scale shifts in ocean circulation and oceanic pathways. This study presents a high-resolution analysis of the projected ocean circulation and pathways of the Arctic water masses across the 21st century. The analysis is based on an eddy-permitting high-resolution global simulation of the ocean general circulation model NEMO (Nucleus for European Modelling of the Ocean) at the 1/4-degree horizontal resolution. The atmospheric forcing is from HadGEM2-ES model output from IPCC Assessment Report 5 (AR5) simulations performed for Coupled Model Intercomparison Project 5 (CMIP5), and follow the Representative Concentration Pathway 8.5 (RCP8.5) scenario. During the 21st century the AO experiences a significant warming, with sea surface temperature increased by in excess of 4 deg. C. Annual mean Arctic sea ice thickness drops to less than 0.5m, and the Arctic Ocean is ice-free in summer from the mid-century. We use an off-line tracer technique to investigate Arctic pathways of the Atlantic and Pacific waters (AW and PW respectively) under this future climate. The AW tracers have been released in the eastern Fram Strait and in the western Barents Sea, whereas the PW tracer has been seeded in the Bering Strait. In the second half of the century the upper 1000 m ocean circulation shows a reduction in the eastward AW flow along the continental slopes towards the Makarov and Canada basins and a deviation of the PW flow away from the Beaufort Sea towards the Siberian coast. Strengthening of Arctic boundary current and intensification of the cyclonic gyre in the Nansen basin of the Arctic Ocean is accompanied by

  2. Yeasts in high Arctic glaciers: the discovery of a new habitat for eukaryotic microorganisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butinar, Lorena; Spencer-Martins, Isabel; Gunde-Cimerman, Nina

    2007-04-01

    Recently a new habitat for microbial life has been discovered at the base of polythermal glaciers. In ice from these subglacial environments so far only non-photosynthetic bacterial communities were discovered, but no eukaryotic microorganisms. We found high numbers of yeast cells, amounting to a maximum of 4,000 CFU ml(-1) of melt ice, in four different high Arctic glaciers. Twenty-two distinct species were isolated, including two new yeast species. Basidiomycetes predominated, among which Cryptococcus liquefaciens was the dominant species (ca. 90% of total). Other frequently occurring species were Cryptococcus albidus, Cryptococcus magnus, Cryptococcus saitoi and Rhodotorula mucilaginosa. The dominant yeast species were psychrotolerant, halotolerant, freeze-thaw resistant, unable to form mycelium, relatively small-sized and able to utilize a wide range of carbon and nitrogen sources. This is the first report on the presence of yeast populations in subglacial ice.

  3. 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...... a gradient in salinity and turbidity along the length of the fjord. The mixed surface layer (ca. 5 m thick) varied in salinity from ca. 10 in the innermost part to 28 at the opening to the Greenland Sea. The depth of the photic zone was highly influenced by the turbidity leading to an increase from 4 m...

  4. Reduced salinity tolerance in the Arctic grayling (Thymallus arcticus) is associated with rapid development of a gill interlamellar cell mass: implications of high-saline spills on native freshwater salmonids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blair, Salvatore D; Matheson, Derrick; He, Yuhe; Goss, Greg G

    2016-01-01

    Arctic grayling (Thymallus arcticus) are salmonids that have a strict freshwater existence in post-glacial North America. Oil and gas development is associated with production of high volumes of hypersaline water. With planned industrial expansion into northern areas of Canada and the USA that directly overlap grayling habitat, the threat of accidental saline water release poses a significant risk. Despite this, we understand little about the responses of grayling to hypersaline waters. We compared the physiological responses and survivability of Arctic grayling and rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) to tolerate an acute transfer to higher saline waters. Arctic grayling and rainbow trout were placed directly into 17 ppt salinity and sampled at 24 and 96 h along with control animals in freshwater at 24 h. Serum sodium, chloride and osmolality levels increased significantly in grayling at both 24 and 96 h time points, whereas trout were able to compensate for the osmoregulatory disturbance by 96 h. Sodium-potassium ATPase mRNA expression responses to salinity were also compared, demonstrating the inability of the grayling to up-regulate the seawater isoform nkaα1b. Our results demonstrated a substantially lower salinity tolerance in grayling. We also found a significant salinity-induced morphological gill remodelling by Arctic grayling, as demonstrated by the rapid growth of an interlamellar cell mass by 24 h that persisted at 96 h. We visualized and quantified the appearance of the interlamellar cell mass as a response to high salinity, although the functional significance remains to be understood fully. Compared with rainbow trout, which are used as an environmental regulatory species, Arctic grayling are unable to compensate for the osmotic stressors that would result from a highly saline produced water spill. Given these new data, collaboration between fisheries and the oil and gas industry will be vital in the long-term conservation strategies

  5. Short-term herbivory has long-term consequences in warmed and ambient high Arctic tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Little, Chelsea J.; Cutting, Helen; Alatalo, Juha; Cooper, Elisabeth

    2017-02-01

    Climate change is occurring across the world, with effects varying by ecosystem and region but already occurring quickly in high-latitude and high-altitude regions. Biotic interactions are important in determining ecosystem response to such changes, but few studies have been long-term in nature, especially in the High Arctic. Mesic tundra plots on Svalbard, Norway, were subjected to grazing at two different intensities by captive Barnacle geese from 2003–2005, in a factorial design with warming by Open Top Chambers. Warming manipulations were continued through 2014, when we measured vegetation structure and composition as well as growth and reproduction of three dominant species in the mesic meadow. Significantly more dead vascular plant material was found in warmed compared to ambient plots, regardless of grazing history, but in contrast to many short-term experiments no difference in the amount of living material was found. This has strong implications for nutrient and carbon cycling and could feed back into community productivity. Dominant species showed increased flowering in warmed plots, especially in those plots where grazing had been applied. However, this added sexual reproduction did not translate to substantial shifts in vegetative cover. Forbs and rushes increased slightly in warmed plots regardless of grazing, while the dominant shrub, Salix polaris, generally declined with effects dependent on grazing, and the evergreen shrub Dryas octopetala declined with previous intensive grazing. There were no treatment effects on community diversity or evenness. Thus despite no changes in total live abundance, a typical short-term response to environmental conditions, we found pronounced changes in dead biomass indicating that tundra ecosystem processes respond to medium- to long-term changes in conditions caused by 12 seasons of summer warming. We suggest that while high arctic tundra plant communities are fairly resistant to current levels of climate warming

  6. Carbon Bioavailability in a High Arctic Fjord Influenced by Glacial Meltwater, NE Greenland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria L. Paulsen

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available The land-to-ocean flux of organic carbon is increasing in glacierized regions in response to increasing temperatures in the Arctic (Hood et al., 2015. In order to understand the response of the coastal ecosystem metabolism to the organic carbon input it is essential to determine the bioavailability of the different carbon sources in the system. We quantified the bacterial turnover of organic carbon in a high Arctic fjord system (Young Sound, NE Greenland during the ice-free period (July-October 2014 and assessed the quality and quantity of the 3 major organic carbon sources; (1 local phytoplankton production (2 runoff from land-terminating glaciers and a lowland river and (3 inflow from the ocean shelf. We found that despite relatively low concentrations of DOC in the rivers, the bioavailability of the river–DOC was significantly higher than in the fjord, and characterized by high cell-specific bacterial production and low C:N ratios. In contrast, the DOC source entering via inflow of coastal shelf waters had high DOC concentrations with high C:N and low specific bacterial production. The phytoplankton production in the fjord could not sustain the bacterial carbon demand, but was still the major source of organic carbon for bacterial growth. We assessed the bacterial community composition and found that communities were specific for the different water types i.e., the bacterial community of the coastal inflow water could be traced mainly in the subsurface water, while the glacial river community strongly dominated the surface water in the fjord.

  7. Research with Arctic peoples

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Smith, H Sally; Bjerregaard, Peter; Chan, Hing Man

    2006-01-01

    of environmental and health issues that are unique to the Arctic regions, and research exploring these issues offers significant opportunities, as well as challenges. On July 28-29, 2004, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research co-sponsored a working group...... entitled "Research with Arctic Peoples: Unique Research Opportunities in Heart, Lung, Blood and Sleep Disorders". The meeting was international in scope with investigators from Greenland, Iceland and Russia, as well as Canada and the United States. Multiple health agencies from Canada and the United States...... sent representatives. Also attending were representatives from the International Union for Circumpolar Health (IUCH) and the National Indian Health Board. The working group developed a set of ten recommendations related to research opportunities in heart, lung, blood and sleep disorders; obstacles...

  8. 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...

  9. 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...

  10. High resolution modeling of the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere region over the Arctic - GEM-AC simulations for the future climate with and without aviation emissions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Porebska, Magdalena; Struzewska, Joanna; Kaminski, Jacek W.

    2016-04-01

    Upper troposphere and lower stratosphere (UTLS) region is a layer around the tropopause. Perturbation of the chemical composition in the UTLS region can impact physical and dynamical processes that can lead to changes in cloudiness, precipitation, radiative forcing, stratosphere-troposphere exchange and zonal flow. The objective of this study is to investigate the potential impacts of aviation emissions on the upper troposphere and lower stratosphere. In order to assess the impact of the aviation emissions we will focus on changes in atmospheric dynamic due to changes in chemical composition in the UTLS over the Arctic. Specifically, we will assess perturbations in the distribution of the wind, temperature and pressure fields in the UTLS region. Our study will be based on simulations using a high resolution chemical weather model for four scenarios of current (2006) and future (2050) climate: with and without aircraft emissions. The tool that we use is the GEM-AC (Global Environmental Multiscale with Atmospheric Chemistry) chemical weather model where air quality, free tropospheric and stratospheric chemistry processes are on-line and interactive in an operational weather forecast model of Environment Canada. In vertical, the model domain is defined on 70 hybrid levels with model top at 0.1 mb. The gas-phase chemistry includes detailed reactions of Ox, NOx, HOx, CO, CH4, ClOx and BrO. Also, the model can address aerosol microphysics and gas-aerosol partitioning. Aircraft emissions are from the AEDT 2006 database developed by the Federal Aviation Administration (USA) and the future climate simulations are based on RCP8.5 projection presented by the IPCC in the fifth Assessment Report AR5. Results from model simulations on a global variable grid with 0.5o x 0.5o uniform resolution over the Arctic will be presented.

  11. Distribution and abundance of Canadian High Arctic belugas, 1974-1979

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    William R Koski

    2002-07-01

    Full Text Available We conducted >236,000 km of aerial surveys and some supplementary studies of belugas (Delphinapterus leucas in the central and eastern Canadian High Arctic in 974-79. Belugas that wintered in the “North Water” in Baffin Bay moved southwest into Lancaster Sound in April and early May. The main westward migration into Lancaster Sound occurred over a 2 to 3 week period during late June to late July. Estuaries along Somerset Island were occupied for <3 weeks from mid-July to mid-August. Little feeding occurred in estuaries. From mid-August until fall migration began in mid-September belugas occupied estuaries and offshore waters in Peel Sound. Fall migration eastward through Lancaster Sound was exclusively along the south coast of Devon Island, highly co-ordinated, and rapid; most of the population passed through the sound in <1 week. The whales then moved north along the east coast of Devon Island; some entered Jones Sound while others crossed directly to SE Ellesmere Island. Most calving occurred in July and early August; calving was not seen in estuaries and probably occurred offshore. Excluding calves, adults and yearlings formed 77% and 8.4%, respectively, of the population. The proportion of calves during mid-August was consistent with a triennial calving cycle. During late summer, belugas fed on coastal concentrations of polar cod (Boreogadus saida, under pan ice offshore (probably on cod, and in deep offshore waters. The size of the Canadian High Arctic population in the late 1970s was estimated to be at least 10,250 to 12,000 animals without allowing for animals that may have passed between surveys or that were below the surface at the time of the counts.

  12. Microbial dynamics in a High Arctic glacier forefield: a combined field, laboratory, and modelling approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bradley, James A.; Arndt, Sandra; Šabacká, Marie; Benning, Liane G.; Barker, Gary L.; Blacker, Joshua J.; Yallop, Marian L.; Wright, Katherine E.; Bellas, Christopher M.; Telling, Jonathan; Tranter, Martyn; Anesio, Alexandre M.

    2016-10-01

    Modelling the development of soils in glacier forefields is necessary in order to assess how microbial and geochemical processes interact and shape soil development in response to glacier retreat. Furthermore, such models can help us predict microbial growth and the fate of Arctic soils in an increasingly ice-free future. Here, for the first time, we combined field sampling with laboratory analyses and numerical modelling to investigate microbial community dynamics in oligotrophic proglacial soils in Svalbard. We measured low bacterial growth rates and growth efficiencies (relative to estimates from Alpine glacier forefields) and high sensitivity of bacterial growth rates to soil temperature (relative to temperate soils). We used these laboratory measurements to inform parameter values in a new numerical model and significantly refined predictions of microbial and biogeochemical dynamics of soil development over a period of roughly 120 years. The model predicted the observed accumulation of autotrophic and heterotrophic biomass. Genomic data indicated that initial microbial communities were dominated by bacteria derived from the glacial environment, whereas older soils hosted a mixed community of autotrophic and heterotrophic bacteria. This finding was simulated by the numerical model, which showed that active microbial communities play key roles in fixing and recycling carbon and nutrients. We also demonstrated the role of allochthonous carbon and microbial necromass in sustaining a pool of organic material, despite high heterotrophic activity in older soils. This combined field, laboratory, and modelling approach demonstrates the value of integrated model-data studies to understand and quantify the functioning of the microbial community in an emerging High Arctic soil ecosystem.

  13. Suspended sediment in a high-Arctic river: An appraisal of flux estimation methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ladegaard-Pedersen, Pernille; Sigsgaard, Charlotte; Kroon, Aart; Abermann, Jakob; Skov, Kirstine; Elberling, Bo

    2017-02-15

    Quantifying fluxes of water, sediment and dissolved compounds through Arctic rivers is important for linking the glacial, terrestrial and marine ecosystems and to quantify the impact of a warming climate. The quantification of fluxes is not trivial. This study uses a 8-years data set (2005-2012) of daily measurements from the high-Artic Zackenberg River in Northeast Greenland to estimate annual suspended sediment fluxes based on four commonly used methods: M1) is the discharge weighted mean and uses direct measurements, while M2-M4) are one uncorrected and two bias corrected rating curves extrapolating a continuous concentration trace from measured values. All methods are tested on complete and reduced datasets. The average annual runoff in the period 2005-2012 was 190±25mio·m(3)y(-1). The different estimation methods gave a range of average annual suspended sediment fluxes between 43,000±10,000ty(-1) and 61,000±16,000ty(-1). Extreme events with high discharges had a mean duration of 1day. The average suspended sediment flux during extreme events was 17,000±5000ty(-1), which constitutes a year-to-year variation of 20-37% of the total annual flux. The most accurate sampling strategy was bi-daily sampling together with a sampling frequency of 2h during extreme events. The most consistent estimation method was an uncorrected rating curve of bi-daily measurements (M2), combined with a linear interpolation of extreme event fluxes. Sampling can be reduced to every fourth day, with both method-agreements and accuracies agreements were Arctic Zackenberg River, unless sampling was done bi-daily, every day and events sampled high-frequently.

  14. 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.

  15. Ocean Properties and Submarine Melt of Ice Shelves in a High-Arctic Fiord (Milne Fiord)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, A.; Mueller, D.; Laval, B.

    2014-12-01

    The role of ambient stratification, the vertical distribution of heat, and fiord circulation on submarine melt rates in glacial fiords in the Canadian Arctic are largely unknown despite recent widespread collapse of ice shelves in this region. A 3-year field study was conducted to investigate ocean influence on ice loss from an ice shelf and glacier tongue in Milne Fiord (82oN), Ellesmere Island. Direct ocean observations of the sub-ice cavities from through-ice profiles showed a vertically stratified water column consisting of a perennial fresh ice-dammed epishelf lake at the surface, above cold relatively fresh Polar Water, and warm saline waters from the upper halocline of the Atlantic layer at depth. The broad continental shelf and a topographic sill prevented the warmest waters of the Atlantic layer from entering the 450 m deep fiord. Meltwater concentrations were highest near the glacier grounding line, with meltwater exported at depth due to the strong ambient stratification. There was little evidence of increased buoyancy-driven melt in summer from subglacial discharge as observed in sub-Arctic fiords (e.g. southern Greenland), suggesting that circulation in high-latitude fiords is largely melt-driven convection with less pronounced seasonality. Basal melt rates estimated using three methods, meltwater flux, divergence of ice flux, and an ocean thermodynamic model, were broadly consistent. Average melt rates of 0.75 ± 0.46 m a-1 and 1.14 ± 0.83 m a-1 were found for the Milne Ice Shelf and Milne Glacier Tongue, respectively, although showed high spatial variability. The highest melt rates (~4 m a-1) were found near the glacier grounding line and were driven by warm upper halocline waters. Similar melt rates occurred in near-surface waters driven by solar heating of the epishelf lake, enhancing melt along the margins of the glacier tongue and the landward edge of the ice shelf. The Milne Ice Shelf and Milne Glacier Tongue are in a state of negative mass

  16. 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.

  17. Snowpack fluxes of methane and carbon dioxidefrom high Arctic tundra

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pirk, Norbert; Tamstorf, Mikkel P.; Lund, Magnus

    2016-01-01

    the expectedgas emissions to the atmosphere, and conversely lead to snowpack gas accumulations of up to 86 ppm CH4and 3800 ppm CO2by late winter. CH4to C O2ratios indicated distinctly different source characteristicsin the rampart of ice-wedge polygons compared to elsewhere on the measured transect, possibly due...... to 2 orders of magnitude lower than growing season fluxes. Perennially, CH4fluxes resembledthe same spatial pattern, which was largely attributed to differences in soil wetness controlling substrateaccumulation and microbial activity. We found no significant gas sinks or sources inside the snowpack...... togeomorphological soil cracks. Collectively, these findings suggest important ties between growing seasonand cold season greenhouse gas emissions from high Arctic tundra....

  18. Inorganic species distribution and microbial diversity within high Arctic cryptoendolithic habitats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omelon, Christopher R; Pollard, Wayne H; Ferris, F Grant

    2007-11-01

    Cryptoendolithic habitats in the Canadian high Arctic are associated with a variety of microbial community assemblages, including cyanobacteria, algae, and fungi. These habitats were analyzed for the presence of metal ions by sequential extraction and evaluated for relationships between these and the various microorganisms found at each site using multivariate statistical methods. Cyanobacteria-dominated communities exist under higher pH conditions with elevated concentrations of calcium and magnesium, whereas communities dominated by fungi and algae are characterized by lower pH conditions and higher concentrations of iron, aluminum, and silicon in the overlying surfaces. These results suggest that the activity of the dominant microorganisms controls the pH of the surrounding environment, which in turn dictates rates of weathering or the possibility for surface crust formation, both ultimately deciding the structure of microbial diversity for each cryptoendolithic habitat.

  19. 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...... processes underlying maintenance of genetic diversity in plant communities in Northeast Greenland. Wind and water transport of seeds are primary methods by which plants disperse and become established in the High Arctic, particularly at shorter distances. Birds and mammals are also involved and may...... 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...

  20. Effects of substrate differences on water availability for Arctic lichens during the snow-free summers in the High Arctic glacier foreland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Inoue, Takeshi; Kudoh, Sakae; Uchida, Masaki; Tanabe, Yukiko; Inoue, Masakane; Kanda, Hiroshi

    2014-12-01

    We used observational and experimental analyses to investigate the photosynthetic activity and water relationships of five lichen species attached to different substrates in a glacier foreland in the High Arctic, Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard (79°N) during the snow-free season in 2009 and 2010. After the rains ceased, lichens and their attached substrates quickly dried, whereas photosynthetic activity in the lichens decreased gradually. The in situ photosynthetic activity was estimated based on the relative electron transportation rate (rETR) in four fruticose lichens: Cetrariella delisei, Flavocetraria nivalis, Cladonia arbuscula ssp. mitis, and Cladonia pleurota. The rETR approached zero around noon, although the crustose lichen Ochrolechia frigida grown on biological soil crust (BSC) could acquire water from the BSC and retain its WC to perform positive photosynthesis. The light-rETR relationship curves of the five well-watered lichens were characterized into two types: shade-adapted with photoinhibition for the fruticose lichens, and light-adapted with no photoinhibition for O. frigida. The maximum rETR was expected to occur when they could acquire water from the surrounding air or from substrates during the desiccation period. Our results suggest that different species of Arctic lichens have different water availabilities due to their substrates and/or morphological characteristics, which affect their photosynthetic active periods during the summer.

  1. High epibenthic foraminiferal δ13C in the Recent deep Arctic Ocean: Implications for ventilation and brine release during stadials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mackensen, Andreas

    2013-09-01

    Low planktic and benthic δ18O and δ13C values in sediments from the Nordic seas of cold stadials of the last glaciation have been attributed to brines, formed similar to modern ones in the Arctic Ocean. To expand on the carbon isotopes of this hypothesis, I investigated benthic δ13C from the modern Arctic Ocean. I show that mean δ13C values of live epibenthic foraminifera from the deep Arctic basins are higher than mean δ13C values of upper slope epibenthic foraminifera. This agrees with mean high δ13C values of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) in Arctic Bottom Water (ABW), which are higher than mean δ13CDIC values from shallower water masses of mainly Atlantic origin. However, adjustments for oceanic 13C Suess depletion raise subsurface and intermediate water δ13CDIC values over ABW δ13CDIC ones. Accordingly, during preindustrial Holocene times, the δ13CDIC of ABW was as high or even higher than today but lower than the δ13CDIC of younger subsurface and intermediate water. If brine-enriched water significantly ventilated ABW, brines should have had high δ13CDIC values. Analogously, high-δ13CDIC brines may have been formed in the Nordic seas during warm interstadials. During cold stadials, when most of the Arctic Ocean was perennially sea ice covered, a cessation of high-δ13CDIC brine rejection may have lowered δ13CDIC values of ABW, and ultimately the δ13CDIC in Nordic seas intermediate and deep water. So in contrast to the idea of enhanced brine formation during cold stadials, the results of this investigation imply that a cessation of brine rejection would be more likely.

  2. Temporal trends of Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) in arctic air: 20 years of monitoring under the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hung, Hayley; Katsoyiannis, Athanasios A; Brorström-Lundén, Eva; Olafsdottir, Kristin; Aas, Wenche; Breivik, Knut; Bohlin-Nizzetto, Pernilla; Sigurdsson, Arni; Hakola, Hannele; Bossi, Rossana; Skov, Henrik; Sverko, Ed; Barresi, Enzo; Fellin, Phil; Wilson, Simon

    2016-10-01

    Temporal trends of Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) measured in Arctic air are essential in understanding long-range transport to remote regions and to evaluate the effectiveness of national and international chemical control initiatives, such as the Stockholm Convention (SC) on POPs. Long-term air monitoring of POPs is conducted under the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP) at four Arctic stations: Alert, Canada; Stórhöfði, Iceland; Zeppelin, Svalbard; and Pallas, Finland, since the 1990s using high volume air samplers. Temporal trends observed for POPs in Arctic air are summarized in this study. Most POPs listed for control under the SC, e.g. polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethanes (DDTs) and chlordanes, are declining slowly in Arctic air, reflecting the reduction of primary emissions during the last two decades and increasing importance of secondary emissions. Slow declining trends also signifies their persistence and slow degradation under the Arctic environment, such that they are still detectable after being banned for decades in many countries. Some POPs, e.g. hexachlorobenzene (HCB) and lighter PCBs, showed increasing trends at specific locations, which may be attributable to warming in the region and continued primary emissions at source. Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) do not decline in air at Canada's Alert station but are declining in European Arctic air, which may be due to influence of local sources at Alert and the much higher historical usage of PBDEs in North America. Arctic air samples are screened for chemicals of emerging concern to provide information regarding their environmental persistence (P) and long-range transport potential (LRTP), which are important criteria for classification as a POP under SC. The AMAP network provides consistent and comparable air monitoring data of POPs for trend development and acts as a bridge between national monitoring programs and SC's Global Monitoring

  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. Glacier inputs influence organic matter composition and prokaryotic distribution in a high Arctic fjord (Kongsfjorden, Svalbard)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bourgeois, Solveig; Kerhervé, Philippe; Calleja, Maria Ll.; Many, Gaël; Morata, Nathalie

    2016-12-01

    With climate change, the strong seasonality and tight pelagic-benthic coupling in the Arctic is expected to change in the next few decades. It is currently unclear how the benthos will be affected by changes of environmental conditions such as supplies of organic matter (OM) from the water column. In the last decade, Kongsfjorden (79°N), a high Arctic fjord in Svalbard influenced by several glaciers and Atlantic water inflow, has been a site of great interest owing to its high sensitivity to climate change, evidenced by a reduction in ice cover and an increase in melting freshwater. To investigate how spatial and seasonal changes in vertical fluxes can impact the benthic compartment of Kongsfjorden, we studied the organic matter characteristics (in terms of quantity and quality) and prokaryotic distribution in sediments from 3 stations along a transect extending from the glacier into the outer fjord in 4 different seasons (spring, summer, autumn and winter) in 2012-2013. The biochemical parameters used to describe the sedimentary organic matter were organic carbon (OC), total nitrogen, bulk stable isotope ratios, pigments (chorophyll-a and phaeopigments) and biopolymeric carbon (BPC), which is the sum of the main macromolecules, i.e. lipids, proteins and carbohydrates. Prokaryotic abundance and distribution were estimated by 4‧,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI) staining. This study identifies a well-marked quantitative gradient of biogenic compounds throughout all seasons and also highlights a discrepancy between the quantity and quality of sedimentary organic matter within the fjord. The sediments near the glacier were organic-poor (Bacterial total cell numbers in sediments of Kongsfjorden were < 2 × 108 cells ml- 1 and the prokaryotic community structure was strongly influenced by the marked environmental biogenic gradients. Overall, the spatial variability prevailed over the seasonal variability in sediments of Kongsfjorden suggesting that glacier inputs

  5. Net ecosystem exchange of CO2 with rapidly changing high Arctic landscapes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Emmerton, Craig A; St Louis, Vincent L; Humphreys, Elyn R; Gamon, John A; Barker, Joel D; Pastorello, Gilberto Z

    2016-03-01

    High Arctic landscapes are expansive and changing rapidly. However, our understanding of their functional responses and potential to mitigate or enhance anthropogenic climate change is limited by few measurements. We collected eddy covariance measurements to quantify the net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2 with polar semidesert and meadow wetland landscapes at the highest latitude location measured to date (82°N). We coupled these rare data with ground and satellite vegetation production measurements (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index; NDVI) to evaluate the effectiveness of upscaling local to regional NEE. During the growing season, the dry polar semidesert landscape was a near-zero sink of atmospheric CO2 (NEE: -0.3 ± 13.5 g C m(-2) ). A nearby meadow wetland accumulated over 300 times more carbon (NEE: -79.3 ± 20.0 g C m(-2) ) than the polar semidesert landscape, and was similar to meadow wetland NEE at much more southerly latitudes. Polar semidesert NEE was most influenced by moisture, with wetter surface soils resulting in greater soil respiration and CO2 emissions. At the meadow wetland, soil heating enhanced plant growth, which in turn increased CO2 uptake. Our upscaling assessment found that polar semidesert NDVI measured on-site was low (mean: 0.120-0.157) and similar to satellite measurements (mean: 0.155-0.163). However, weak plant growth resulted in poor satellite NDVI-NEE relationships and created challenges for remotely detecting changes in the cycling of carbon on the polar semidesert landscape. The meadow wetland appeared more suitable to assess plant production and NEE via remote sensing; however, high Arctic wetland extent is constrained by topography to small areas that may be difficult to resolve with large satellite pixels. We predict that until summer precipitation and humidity increases enough to offset poor soil moisture retention, climate-related changes to productivity on polar semideserts may be restricted.

  6. Distribution of radium-224 in the western Arctic Ocean

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    QIU Yusheng; CHEN Min; LI Yanping

    2005-01-01

    Radium-224 activities in the western Arctic Ocean were measured via ship-board 220Rn emanation technique during the Second Chinese National Arctic Expedition. The results showed that the 224Ra activities in the study areas ranged from being less than 0.08 to 3.58 Bq/m3, with an average of 0.23 Bq/m3. The low 224Ra concentration in the surface water was attributed to the influence of sea ice melted water. The horizontal distribution of surface 224Ra in the western Arctic Ocean showed a high 224Ra characteristics occurred along the slope around 160°W, providing evidence for the importance of ice-rafted sediments to controlling the distribution of radium isotopes in the Arctic Ocean. Mostly, 224Ra concentrations increased with the depth in the shelf region and reached a maximum at 75 m at the central Canada Basin, which further confirms the importance of the transport of shelf bottom water to maintaining the upper halocline layer in the Canada Basin.

  7. Coal facies studies in Canada

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kalkreuth, Wolfgang D. [Laboratorio de Carvao e de Petrologia Organica, Instituto de Geociencias, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Av. Bento Goncalves, 9500, 91501-970 Porto Alegre, RS (Brazil)

    2004-04-23

    The present study is a compilation of published data on coal facies studies in Canada based on coal petrological and other methods. The geological age of the coals range from the Devonian coal deposits in Arctic Canada to coals of Tertiary age in the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin, intermontane British Columbia and Arctic Canada. In terms of rank, the coal deposits studied range from lignite to low volatile bituminous. Coal petrological methods include maceral and microlithotype analyses, frequently integrated with data from palynological and geochemical analyses. Most recently, a number of studies have applied sequence stratigraphic concepts to the coal-bearing strata including the interpretation of coal petrological data in the context of this concept.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Køie, Marianne

    2009-01-01

    varicus and Lecithaster gibbosus and cestode larvae were found at most stations. Single specimens of the nematode larvae Anisakis simplex were found at four stations. A comparison of the distribution of the larvae of Contracaecum sp. and Hysterothylacium sp. is difficult due to a possible confusion...... of the two genera. Most of the metazoan parasites of B. saida are generalist species found in several fish families. Boreogadus saida acquires most of its endoparasites by eating pelagic crustaceans, mainly copepods and amphipods. It plays an important role in the arctic ecosystem and its parasites...

  11. Would an Increase in High-Skilled Immigration in Canada Benefit Workers?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maxime Fougère

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available This study examines the economic and welfare effects of raising the number of high-skilled immigrants in Canada. It uses a life-cycle applied general equilibrium model with endogenous time allocation decisions between work, education, and leisure. According to the simulation results, raising the number of high-skilled immigrants would boost productive capacity and labour productivity but could lower real GDP per capita. In addition, by raising the supply of high-skilled workers, more high-skilled immigrants would reduce the skill premium and the return to human capital. This in turn would lower incentives for young adults to invest in human capital and have a dampening effect on the domestic supply of skilled workers. Finally, it is found that more high-skilled immigrants would be welfare enhancing for medium- and low-skilled workers but welfare decreasing for high-skilled workers.

  12. High Resolution Modelling of Aerosols-Meteorology Interactions over Northern Europe and Arctic regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahura, Alexander; Nuterman, Roman; Baklanov, Alexander

    2017-04-01

    Aerosols have influence on weather, air quality and climate. Multi-scale modelling, and especially long-range atmospheric transport, dispersion, and deposition of aerosols from remote sources is especially challenging in northern latitudes. It is due to complexity of meteorological, chemical and biological processes, their interactions and especially within and above the surface layer, linking to climate change, and influence on ecosystems. The online integrated meteorology-chemistry-aerosols model Enviro-HIRLAM (Environment - High Resolution Limited Area Model) was employed for evaluating spatio-temporal variability of atmospheric aerosols and their interactions and effects on meteorology with a focus on the Northern Europe and Arctic regions. The model setup covers domain having 510 x 568 grids of latitude vs. longitude, horizontal resolution of 0.15 deg, 40 vertical hybrid levels, time step of 360 sec, 6 h meteorological surface data assimilation. The model was run for January and July-August 2010 at DMI's CRAY-XC30 supercomputer. Emissions used are anthropogenic (ECLIPSE v5), shipping (combined AU_RCP and FMI), wildfires (IS4FIRES), and interactive sea salt, dust and DMS. The boundary conditions were obtained from ECMWF: for meteorology (from IFS at 0.15 and 0.25 deg. for summer and winter, respectively) and atmospheric composition (from MACC Reanalysis at 1.125 deg. resolution). The Enviro-HIRLAM model was employed in 4 modes: the reference run (e.g. without aerosols influence on meteorology) and 3 modified runs (direct aerosol effect (DAE), indirect aerosol effect (IDAE), and both effects DAE and IDAE included). The differences between the reference run and the runs with mentioned aerosol effects were estimated on a day-by-day, monthly and diurnal cycle bases over the domain, Arctic areas, European and Nordic countries. The results of statistical analyses are summarized and presented.

  13. A synthetic data set of high-spectral-resolution infrared spectra for the Arctic atmosphere

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cox, Christopher J.; Rowe, Penny M.; Neshyba, Steven P.; Walden, Von P.

    2016-05-01

    Cloud microphysical and macrophysical properties are critical for understanding the role of clouds in climate. These properties are commonly retrieved from ground-based and satellite-based infrared remote sensing instruments. However, retrieval uncertainties are difficult to quantify without a standard for comparison. This is particularly true over the polar regions, where surface-based data for a cloud climatology are sparse, yet clouds represent a major source of uncertainty in weather and climate models. We describe a synthetic high-spectral-resolution infrared data set that is designed to facilitate validation and development of cloud retrieval algorithms for surface- and satellite-based remote sensing instruments. Since the data set is calculated using pre-defined cloudy atmospheres, the properties of the cloud and atmospheric state are known a priori. The atmospheric state used for the simulations is drawn from radiosonde measurements made at the North Slope of Alaska (NSA) Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) site at Barrow, Alaska (71.325° N, 156.615° W), a location that is generally representative of the western Arctic. The cloud properties for each simulation are selected from statistical distributions derived from past field measurements. Upwelling (at 60 km) and downwelling (at the surface) infrared spectra are simulated for 260 cloudy cases from 50 to 3000 cm-1 (3.3 to 200 µm) at monochromatic (line-by-line) resolution at a spacing of ˜ 0.01 cm-1 using the Line-by-line Radiative Transfer Model (LBLRTM) and the discrete-ordinate-method radiative transfer code (DISORT). These spectra are freely available for interested researchers from the NSF Arctic Data Center data repository (doi:10.5065/D61J97TT).

  14. 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.

  15. Climate adaptation is not enough: warming does not facilitate success of southern tundra plant populations in the high Arctic.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bjorkman, Anne D; Vellend, Mark; Frei, Esther R; Henry, Gregory H R

    2017-04-01

    Rapidly rising temperatures are expected to cause latitudinal and elevational range shifts as species track their optimal climate north and upward. However, a lack of adaptation to environmental conditions other than climate - for example photoperiod, biotic interactions, or edaphic conditions - might limit the success of immigrants in a new location despite hospitable climatic conditions. Here, we present one of the first direct experimental tests of the hypothesis that warmer temperatures at northern latitudes will confer a fitness advantage to southern immigrants relative to native populations. As rates of warming in the Arctic are more than double the global average, understanding the impacts of warming in Arctic ecosystems is especially urgent. We established experimentally warmed and nonwarmed common garden plots at Alexandra Fiord, Ellesmere Island in the Canadian High Arctic with seeds of two forb species (Oxyria digyna and Papaver radicatum) originating from three to five populations at different latitudes across the Arctic. We found that plants from the local populations generally had higher survival and obtained a greater maximum size than foreign individuals, regardless of warming treatment. Phenological traits varied with latitude of the source population, such that southern populations demonstrated substantially delayed leaf-out and senescence relative to northern populations. Our results suggest that environmental conditions other than temperature may influence the ability of foreign populations and species to establish at more northerly latitudes as the climate warms, potentially leading to lags in northward range shifts for some species.

  16. Using High Spatio-Temporal Optical Remote Sensing to Monitor Dissolved Organic Carbon in the Arctic River Yenisei

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pierre-Alexis Herrault

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available In Arctic regions, a major concern is the release of carbon from melting permafrost that could greatly exceed current human carbon emissions. Arctic rivers drain these organic-rich watersheds (Ob, Lena, Yenisei, Mackenzie, Yukon but field measurements at the outlets of these great Arctic rivers are constrained by limited accessibility of sampling sites. In particular, the highest dissolved organic carbon (DOC fluxes are observed throughout the ice breakup period that occurs over a short two to three-week period in late May or early June during the snowmelt-generated peak flow. The colored fraction of dissolved organic carbon (DOC which absorbs UV and visible light is designed as chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM. It is highly correlated to DOC in large arctic rivers and streams, allowing for remote sensing to monitor DOC concentrations from satellite imagery. High temporal and spatial resolutions remote sensing tools are highly relevant for the study of DOC fluxes in a large Arctic river. The high temporal resolution allows for correctly assessing this highly dynamic process, especially the spring freshet event (a few weeks in May. The high spatial resolution allows for assessing the spatial variability within the stream and quantifying DOC transfer during the ice break period when the access to the river is almost impossible. In this study, we develop a CDOM retrieval algorithm at a high spatial and a high temporal resolution in the Yenisei River. We used extensive DOC and DOM spectral absorbance datasets from 2014 and 2015. Twelve SPOT5 (Take5 and Landsat 8 (OLI images from 2014 and 2015 were examined for this investigation. Relationships between CDOM and spectral variables were explored using linear models (LM. Results demonstrated the capacity of a CDOM algorithm retrieval to monitor DOC fluxes in the Yenisei River during a whole open water season with a special focus on the peak flow period. Overall, future Sentinel2/Landsat8

  17. Amplified Late Pliocene terrestrial warmth in northern high latitudes from greater radiative forcing and closed Arctic Ocean gateways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feng, Ran; Otto-Bliesner, Bette L.; Fletcher, Tamara L.; Tabor, Clay R.; Ballantyne, Ashley P.; Brady, Esther C.

    2017-05-01

    Proxy reconstructions of the mid-Piacenzian warm period (mPWP, between 3.264 and 3.025 Ma) suggest terrestrial temperatures were much warmer in the northern high latitudes (55°-90°N, referred to as NHL) than present-day. Climate models participating in the Pliocene Model Intercomparison Project Phase 1 (PlioMIP1) tend to underestimate this warmth. For instance, the underestimate is ∼10 °C on average across NHL and up to 17 °C in the Canadian Arctic region in the Community Climate System Model version 4 (CCSM4). Here, we explore potential mPWP climate forcings that might contribute to this mPWP mismatch. We carry out seven experiments to assess terrestrial temperature responses to Pliocene Arctic gateway closure, variations in CO2 level, and orbital forcing at millennial time scale. To better compare the full range of simulated terrestrial temperatures with sparse proxy data, we introduce a pattern recognition technique that simplifies the model surface temperatures to a few representative patterns that can be validate with the limited terrestrial proxy data. The pattern recognition technique reveals two prominent features of simulated Pliocene surface temperature responses. First, distinctive patterns of amplified warming occur in the NHL, which can be explained by lowered surface elevation of Greenland, pattern and amount of Arctic sea ice loss, and changing strength of Atlantic meridional overturning circulation. Second, patterns of surface temperature response are similar among experiments with different forcing mechanisms. This similarity is due to strong feedbacks from responses in surface albedo and troposphere water vapor content to sea ice changes, which overwhelm distinctions in forcings from changes in insolation, CO2 forcing, and Arctic gateway closure. By comparing CCSM4 simulations with proxy records, we demonstrate that both model and proxy records show similar patterns of mPWP NHL terrestrial warmth, but the model underestimates the magnitude

  18. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dennis Hanke

    2016-07-01

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

  20. 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

    2016-01-01

    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

  1. 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

  2. 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)

    Lettenmaier, Dennis P

    2013-04-08

    Primary activities are reported in these areas: climate system component studies via one-way coupling experiments; development of the Regional Arctic Climate System Model (RACM); and physical feedback studies focusing on changes in Arctic sea ice using the fully coupled model.

  3. Migration patterns of Western High Arctic (Grey-belly) Brant Branta bernicla

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyd, W. Sean; Ward, David H.; Kraege, Donald K.; Gerick, Alyssa A.

    2014-01-01

    This study describes the seasonal migration patterns of Western High Arctic Brant (WHA, or Grey-belly Brent Geese), Branta bernicla, an admixed population that breeds in the Canadian High Arctic and winters along the Pacific coast of North America. Adult WHA Brant were captured in family groups on Melville Island (75°23'N, 110°50'W) in 2002 and 2005 and marked with satellite platform transmitting terminal (PTT) transmitters or very high frequency (VHF) transmitters. During autumn migration, all PTT-tagged Brant followed a coastal route around Alaska and staged for variable lengths of time at the following sites on the north and west coasts of Alaska: Kasegaluk Lagoon (69°56'N, 162°40'W), Ikpek Lagoon (65°55'N, 167°03'W), and Izembek Lagoon (55°19'N, 162°50'W). Izembek Lagoon was the most important staging area in terms of length of stay (two months on average) and the majority (67-93%) of PTT and VHF detections occurred in Moffet Bay (55°24'N, 162°34'W). After departing Izembek Lagoon, the PTT-tagged geese followed a c. 2,900 km trans-oceanic route to overwinter in the southern part of the Salish Sea (i.e. from north Puget Sound, Washington to south Strait of Georgia, British Columbia; centred at c. 48°45'N, 122°40'W). Most (c. 45%) PTT detections in the southern Salish Sea occurred in Samish Bay (48°36'N, 22°30'W) followed by Padilla Bay (48°30'N, 122°31'W; c. 26%). Brant migrated north from the Salish Sea along the coast to southeast Alaska and then followed either an interior route across the Yukon or a coastal route around Alaska. The "interior" birds staged for c. four days at Liverpool Bay (69°20'N, 133°55'W) in the Northwest Territories before flying on to Melville Island. They also departed the Salish Sea two weeks later than the coastal migrants and arrived at Melville Island two weeks earlier. This study and previous research suggest that WHA Brant use similar migration routes each year and are faithful to their breeding, staging, and

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamanouchi, Takashi

    2016-04-01

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

  5. Basal mercury concentrations and biomagnification rates in freshwater and marine food webs: Effects on Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) from eastern Canada

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Velden, S. van der, E-mail: sdorn@uwaterloo.ca [Department of Biology, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, N2L 3G1 (Canada); Dempson, J.B. [Fisheries and Oceans Canada, St. John' s, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, A1C 5X1 (Canada); Evans, M.S. [Environment Canada, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, S7N 3H5 (Canada); Muir, D.C.G. [Environment Canada, Burlington, Ontario, Canada, L7R 4A6 (Canada); Power, M., E-mail: m3power@uwaterloo.ca [Department of Biology, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, N2L 3G1 (Canada)

    2013-02-01

    Patterns of total Hg (THg) and methyl Hg (MeHg) biomagnification were investigated in six pairs of co-located lacustrine and marine food webs supporting a common predator, Arctic charr. Mercury biomagnification rates (the slope of log Hg concentration versus δ{sup 15}N-inferred trophic level) did not differ significantly between the two feeding habitats for either THg or MeHg, but THg and MeHg concentrations at the base of the food web were higher in the lacustrine environment than in the marine environment. The proportion of THg as MeHg was related to trophic level, and the relationship was statistically similar in the lacustrine and marine habitats. The biomagnification rate of MeHg exceeded that of THg in both habitats. We conclude that the known difference in Hg concentration between anadromous and non-anadromous Arctic charr is driven by differential Hg concentrations at the base of the lacustrine and marine foodwebs, and not by differential biomagnification rates. - Highlights: ► Concentrations of total mercury ([THg]) and methylmercury ([MeHg]) were measured in 6 paired lacustrine and marine food webs. ► Biomagnification rates (slopes of [THg] or [MeHg] versus δ{sup 15}N-inferred trophic level) were similar in the two habitat types. ► Mercury concentrations at the base of the food web were higher in lacustrine than in marine food webs. ► The percentage of methylated mercury increased with trophic level similarly in the two habitat types. ► The biomagnification rate of MeHg exceeded that of THg in both habitats.

  6. Impacts of decline harvest of country food on nutrient intake among Inuit in Arctic Canada: impact of climate change and possible adaptation plan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renata Rosol

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Background: The pervasive food insecurity and the diet transition away from local, nutrient-rich country foods present a public health challenge among Inuit living in the Canadian Arctic. While environmental factors such as climate change decreased the accessibility and availability of many country food species, new species were introduced into regions where they were previously unavailable. An adaptation such as turning to alternate country food species can be a viable solution to substitute for the nutrients provided by the declined food species. The objective of this study was to estimate the impact on nutrient intake using hypothetical scenarios that current commonly harvested country foods were reduced by 50%, and were replaced with alternate or new species. Methods: Data collected during the 2007–2008 Inuit Health Survey from 36 Canadian Arctic communities spanning Nunavut, the Inuvialuit Settlement Region and Nunatsiavut were used. Results: A 50% decline in consumption of fish, whale, ringed seals and birds (the food that was reported to be in decline resulted in a significant decrease in essential nutrient intake. Possible substitute foods were identified but some nutrients such as zinc and especially vitamin D were most often found lacking in the alternative diet. Conclusions: If the alternative species are not available or feasible, more expensive and less nutritionally dense store-bought foods may be sought. Given the superior quality of country foods and their association with food security, and Inuit cultural health and personal identity, developing skills and awareness for adaptation, promoting regional sharing networks, forming a co-management agency and continuing nutritional monitoring may potentially preserve the nutritional integrity of Inuit diet, and in turn their health and cultural survival.

  7. 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

  8. 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

  9. Timing, Magnitude and Sources of Ecosystem Respiration in High Arctic Tundra of NW Greenland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lupascu, M.; Xu, X.; Lett, C.; Maseyk, K. S.; Lindsey, D. S.; Thomas, J. S.; Welker, J. M.; Czimczik, C. I.

    2011-12-01

    High arctic ecosystems with low vegetation density contain significant stocks of organic carbon (C) in the form of soil organic matter that range in age from modern to ancient. How rapidly these C pools can be mineralized and lost to the atmosphere as CO2 (ecosystem respiration, ER) as a consequence of warming and, or changes in precipitation is a major uncertainty in our understanding of current and future arctic biogeochemistry and for predicting future levels of atmospheric CO2. In a 2-year study (2010-2011), we monitored seasonal changes in the magnitude, timing and sources of ER and soil pore space CO2 in the High Arctic of NW Greenland under current and simulated, future climate conditions. Measurements were taken from May to August at a multi-factorial, long-term climate change experiment in prostrate dwarf-shrub tundra on patterned ground with 5 treatments: (T1) +2oC warming, (T2) +4oC warming, (W) +50% summer precipitation, (T2W) +4oC + 50% summer precipitation, and (C) control. ER (using opaque chambers) and soil CO2 concentrations (wells) were monitored daily via infrared spectroscopy (LI-COR 800 & 840). The source of CO2 was inferred from its radiocarbon (14C) content analyzed at the AMS facility in UCI. CO2 was sampled monthly using molecular sieve traps (chambers) or evacuated canisters (wells). Highest rates of ER are observed on vegetated ground with a maximum in mid summer - reflecting a peak in plant productivity and soil temperature. Respiration rates from bare ground remain similar throughout the summer. Additional soil moisture, administered or due to precipitation events, strongly enhances ER from both vegetated and bare ground. Daily ER budget for the sampling period was of 53.1 mmol C m-2 day-1 for the (C) vegetated areas compared to the 60.0 for the (T2), 68.1 for the (T2W) or the 79.9 for the (W) treatment. ER was highly correlated to temperature (eg. C = 0.8; T2W = 0.8) until middle of July, when heavy precipitation started to occur. In

  10. Development, sensitivity analysis, and uncertainty quantification of high-fidelity arctic sea ice models.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Peterson, Kara J.; Bochev, Pavel Blagoveston; Paskaleva, Biliana S.

    2010-09-01

    Arctic sea ice is an important component of the global climate system and due to feedback effects the Arctic ice cover is changing rapidly. Predictive mathematical models are of paramount importance for accurate estimates of the future ice trajectory. However, the sea ice components of Global Climate Models (GCMs) vary significantly in their prediction of the future state of Arctic sea ice and have generally underestimated the rate of decline in minimum sea ice extent seen over the past thirty years. One of the contributing factors to this variability is the sensitivity of the sea ice to model physical parameters. A new sea ice model that has the potential to improve sea ice predictions incorporates an anisotropic elastic-decohesive rheology and dynamics solved using the material-point method (MPM), which combines Lagrangian particles for advection with a background grid for gradient computations. We evaluate the variability of the Los Alamos National Laboratory CICE code and the MPM sea ice code for a single year simulation of the Arctic basin using consistent ocean and atmospheric forcing. Sensitivities of ice volume, ice area, ice extent, root mean square (RMS) ice speed, central Arctic ice thickness, and central Arctic ice speed with respect to ten different dynamic and thermodynamic parameters are evaluated both individually and in combination using the Design Analysis Kit for Optimization and Terascale Applications (DAKOTA). We find similar responses for the two codes and some interesting seasonal variability in the strength of the parameters on the solution.

  11. 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

  12. Arctic security in an age of climate change

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kraska, James (ed.)

    2013-03-01

    Publisher review: This book examines Arctic defense policy and military security from the perspective of all eight Arctic states. In light of climate change and melting ice in the Arctic Ocean, Canada, Russia, Denmark (Greenland), Norway and the United States, as well as Iceland, Sweden and Finland, are grappling with an emerging Arctic security paradigm. This volume brings together the world's most seasoned Arctic political-military experts from Europe and North America to analyze how Arctic nations are adapting their security postures to accommodate increased shipping, expanding naval presence, and energy and mineral development in the polar region. The book analyzes the ascent of Russia as the first 'Arctic superpower', the growing importance of polar security for NATO and the Nordic states, and the increasing role of Canada and the United States in the region.(Author)

  13. 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

  14. 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 .

  15. 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

  16. 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

  17. 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...... season length and by protecting or exposing flower buds to cold winter air, but most species studied are resistant to changes....

  18. Spatial and seasonal variations in evapotranspiration over Canada's landmass

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. Wang

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available A 30 yr (1979–2008 dataset of actual evapotranspiration (ET at 1 km resolution was generated over Canada's landmass by integrating remote sensing land surface data and gridded climate data using the EALCO model run at 30 min time step. This long-term high resolution dataset was used to characterize the spatiotemporal variations in ET across Canada. The results show that annual ET varied from 600 mm yr−1 over several regions in the south to less than 100 mm yr−1 in the northern arctic. Nationally, ET in summer (i.e., June to August comprised 65% of the annual total amount. ET in the cold season remained mostly below 10 mm month−1 over the country. Negative monthly ET was obtained over the arctic region in winter, indicating EALCO simulated a larger amount of condensation than ET. Overall, the mean ET over the entire Canadian landmass for the 30 yr was 239 mm yr−1, or 44% of its corresponding precipitation. Comparisons of available ET studies in Canada revealed large uncertainties in ET estimates associated with using different approaches. The scarcity of ET measurements for the diverse ecosystems in Canada remains a significant challenge for reducing the uncertainties; this gap needs to be addressed in future studies to improve capabilities in climate/weather modelling and water resource management.

  19. Human-induced Arctic moistening.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2008-04-25

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

  20. Force balance and deformation characteristics of anisotropic Arctic sea ice (a high resolution study)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feltham, D. L.; Heorton, H. D.; Tsamados, M.

    2016-12-01

    The spatial distribution of Arctic sea ice arises from its deformation, driven by external momentum forcing, thermodynamic growth and melt. The deformation of Arctic sea ice is observed to have structural alignment on a broad range of length scales. By considering the alignment of diamond-shaped sea ice floes, an anisotropic rheology (known as the Elastic Anisotropic Plastic, EAP, rheology) has been developed for use in a climate sea ice model. Here we present investigations into the role of anisotropy in determining the internal ice stress gradient and the complete force balance of Arctic sea ice using a state-of-the-art climate sea ice model. Our investigations are focused on the link between external imposed dynamical forcing, predominantly the wind stress, and the emergent properties of sea ice, including its drift speed and thickness distribution. We analyse the characteristics of deformation events for different sea ice states and anisotropic alignment over different regions of the Arctic Ocean. We present the full seasonal stress balance and sea ice state over the Arctic ocean. We have performed 10 km basin-scale simulations over a 30-year time scale, and 2 km and 500 m resolution simulations in an idealised configuration. The anisotropic EAP sea ice rheology gives higher shear stresses than the more customary isotropic EVP rheology, and these reduce ice drift speed and mechanical thickening, particularly important in the Archipelago. In the central Arctic the circulation of sea ice is reduced allowing it to grow thicker thermodynamically. The emergent stress-strain rate correlations from the EAP model suggest that it is possible to characterise the internal ice stresses of Arctic sea ice from observable basin-wide deformation and drift patterns.

  1. Use of High Resolution UAS Imagery to Classify Sub-Arctic Vegetation Types

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrick, C.; Palace, M. W.; Finnell, D. R.; Garnello, A.; Sullivan, F.; Anderson, S. M.; Varner, R. K.

    2014-12-01

    Sub-arctic permafrost regions are now experiencing annual warming with a resulting thaw that induces changes to the vegetative landscape. This warming trend is directly correlated to increases in annual greenhouse gas emissions including methane (CH4). Vegetation species and composition are indirect indicators of CH4 flux, and may serve as a proxy for estimating changes in CH4emission over time. Three WorldView-2 images (2m2 spatial resolution, 8 multispectral bands) were acquired in Jul/Aug of 2012-2014 over the Abisko region in northern Sweden. Color infrared (CIR) sub-meter imagery was also collected over a 4km2 area in 2014 using both a multi-rotor helicopter and a fixed wing unmanned aircraft system (UAS). Fifty 1m2 ground sample plots were established; these plots cover 5 major ground cover vegetation classes and were used in classification efforts. Texture analysis was conducted on both UAS and WV-2 imagery. Both an unsupervised k-means clustering algorithm to predict vegetation classes and a supervised classification using both random forests and neural networks were conducted; similar texture analysis and clustering were also performed on the UAS imagery. Classifications of the two imagery types were compared with promising results, thus supporting the use of UAS and high resolution satellite image collection to provide landscape level characterization of vegetation.

  2. 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...

  3. Ambient UV-B radiation decreases photosynthesis in high arctic Vaccinium uliginosum

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Albert, K.R.; Ro-Poulsen, H. (Univ. of Copenhagen, Dept. of Terrestrial Ecology, Copenhagen (DK)); Mikkelsen, T.N. (Technical Univ. of Denmark, Risoe National Laboratory for Sustainable Energy, Biosystems Dept., Roskilde (DK))

    2008-06-15

    An UV-B-exclusion experiment was established in high arctic Zackenberg, Northeast Greenland, to investigate the possible effects of ambient UV-B on plant performance. During almost a whole growing season, canopy gas exchange and Chl fluorescence were measured on Vaccinium uliginosum (bog blueberry). Leaf area, biomass, carbon, nitrogen and UV-B-absorbing compounds were determined from a late season harvest. Compared with the reduced UV-B treatment, the plants in ambient UV-B were found to have a higher content of UV-B-absorbing compounds, and canopy net photosynthesis was as an average 23% lower during the season. By means of the JIP-test, it was found that the potential of processing light energy through the photosynthetic machinery was slightly reduced in ambient UV-B. This indicates that not only the UV-B effects on PSII may be responsible for some of the observed reduction of photosynthesis but also the effects on other parts of the photosynthetic machinery, e.g. the Calvin cycle, might be important. The 60% reduction of the UV-B irradiance used in this study implies a higher relative change in the UV-B load than many of the supplemental experiments do, but the substantial effect on photosynthesis clearly indicates that V. uliginosum is negatively affected by the current level of UV-B. (au)

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steinbring, Eric

    2017-01-01

    Nighttime zenith sky spectral brightness in the 3.3-20 μm wavelength region is reported for an observatory site nearby Eureka on Ellesmere Island in the Canadian High Arctic. Measurements are derived from an automated Fourier-transform spectrograph that operated there continuously over three consecutive winters. During that time, the median through the most transparent portion of the Q window was 460 {Jy} {{arcsec}}-2, falling below 32 {Jy} {{arcsec}}-2 in the N band, and to sub-Jansky levels by M and shortward, reaching only 36 {mJy} {{arcsec}}-2 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 that the study location has dark skies across the whole thermal infrared spectrum, typically sub-200 μ {Jy} {{arcsec}}-2 at 2.4 μm. That background is comparable to South Pole and more than an order of magnitude less than estimates for the best temperate astronomical sites, all at much higher elevation. Considerations relevant to future facilities, including for polar transient surveys, are discussed.

  5. Reconstruction of Holocene patterns of change in a High Arctic coastal landscape, Southern Sassenfjorden, Svalbard

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sessford, Evangeline G.; Strzelecki, Mateusz C.; Hormes, Anne

    2015-04-01

    Abrupt shifts in sediment supply, relative sea level, permafrost regime, glacier state, snow cover and sea ice conditions associated with Holocene climate changes control processes operating on High Arctic coasts and make reconstructions of their past evolution a significant research challenge. This study attempts to describe the development of the coastal zone in southern Sassenfjorden, Svalbard, throughout the Holocene focusing on the styles of adjustment to major landscape changes. Five marine terraces (MT1-5) are identified and assessed. Spatial and chronological analysis suggests that the highest terrace, MT5, is pre-LGM (Last Glacial Maximum) and that MT4-3 underwent rapid uplift (151 and 11.4 mm/year, respectively) shortly prior to 11 061 ± 174 cal. yr BP and became fully terrestrial by 9100 years ago (as indicated by emergence rates) during the Holocene Thermal Maximum (HTM). Uplift rates for MT2-1 slowed to 5 and 2 mm/year, respectively, with suggested emergence between 7200 and 6800 cal. yr BP. A final 2 m uplift of the relict alluvial plain probably happened during the Medieval Warm Period (1200-950 cal. yr BP). Most recent coastal development (AD 1912-2012) is characterised by episodes of coastal erosion on the cliff and progradation of the Nøiselva delta. Interactions between sea ice, snow cover, permafrost, wind and wave regimes are assessed to understand their implications on future coastal development in a warming climate.

  6. Object-Based Arctic Sea Ice Feature Extraction through High Spatial Resolution Aerial photos

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miao, X.; Xie, H.

    2015-12-01

    High resolution aerial photographs used to detect and classify sea ice features can provide accurate physical parameters to refine, validate, and improve climate models. However, manually delineating sea ice features, such as melt ponds, submerged ice, water, ice/snow, and pressure ridges, is time-consuming and labor-intensive. An object-based classification algorithm is developed to automatically extract sea ice features efficiently from aerial photographs taken during the Chinese National Arctic Research Expedition in summer 2010 (CHINARE 2010) in the MIZ near the Alaska coast. The algorithm includes four steps: (1) the image segmentation groups the neighboring pixels into objects based on the similarity of spectral and textural information; (2) the random forest classifier distinguishes four general classes: water, general submerged ice (GSI, including melt ponds and submerged ice), shadow, and ice/snow; (3) the polygon neighbor analysis separates melt ponds and submerged ice based on spatial relationship; and (4) pressure ridge features are extracted from shadow based on local illumination geometry. The producer's accuracy of 90.8% and user's accuracy of 91.8% are achieved for melt pond detection, and shadow shows a user's accuracy of 88.9% and producer's accuracies of 91.4%. Finally, pond density, pond fraction, ice floes, mean ice concentration, average ridge height, ridge profile, and ridge frequency are extracted from batch processing of aerial photos, and their uncertainties are estimated.

  7. 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, Helge

    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 leaf angle control. Two sites with natural leaf positions had ground angles of 0° (‘level site’) and 45° (‘sloping site’), while at a third site the leaves were fixed in an angle of 45° to homogenize the irradiance dose (‘fixed leaf angle site’). The photosynthetic performance of the leaves......, nitrogen and UV-B absorbing compounds. Compared to a 60% reduced UV-B irradiance, the ambient solar UV-B reduced net photosynthesis in Salix arctica leaves fixed in the 45° position which exposed leaves to maximum natural irradiance. Also a reduced Calvin Cycle capacity was found, i.e. the maximum rate...

  8. The Arctic lithosphere: an overview

    Science.gov (United States)

    Drachev, S.; Pease, V.; Stephenson, R.

    2012-04-01

    The Arctic is comprised of three deepwater oceanic basins, the Norwegian-Greenland, Eurasia, and Amerasia basins, surrounded by continental masses of the Achaean to Early Proterozoic North American, Baltica and Siberian cratons and intervening Neoproterozoic and Phanerozoic fold belts. Though the tectonic history of the Arctic continental realm spans almost three billions of years, the formation of the Arctic began with the creation of Pangaea-II supercontinent at end of Permian epoch. Between 250 and 150 Ma the Proto-Arctic was represented by the Anyui Ocean, or Angayuchum Sea - a Paleo-Pacific embayment into Pangaea II. During the Mesozoic Pangaea II was destroyed and the Anyi Ocean was isolated from the Paleo-Pacific, finally leading to the separation of Arctic Alaska-Chukchi Microcontinent from the North American side of Laurasia; the collision of this microplate with the Siberian margin occurred at ca. 125 Ma in association with the opening of the Canada Basin. The final stage of the Arctic formation took place in the Cenozoic, and was related to the propagation of the divergent Atlantic lithospheric plate boundary between North America and Baltica with the separation of the Lomonosov continental sliver from the Eurasian margin and opening of the Eurasia oceanic basin between 56 and 0 Ma. The present-day Arctic, especially its shelves and oceanic basins, is one of the least studied places on the Earth. Though we know the geology of the surrounding continental masses, there are still many questions remaining about major lithospheric divides beneath the Arctic seas, such as: • Where are the plate boundaries associated with the Amerasia Basin? • How and when did the Canada Basin open? • What was the pre-drift setting of the Chukchi Borderland? • Which tectonic processes formed the East Siberian shelves? • How and when did the major ridges in the Amerasia Basin form? • Where are the Early Tertiary plate boundaries in the Arctic? • What is the

  9. 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...

  10. Toward Improved Estimation of the Dynamic Topography and Ocean Circulation in the High Latitude and Arctic Ocean: The Importance of GOCE

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Johannessen, J. A.; Raj, R. P.; Nilsen, J. E. Ø.

    2014-01-01

    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 latitude and Arctic is expected to undergo changes although to date it is challenging to accurately......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...... circulation and transport variability in the high latitude and Arctic Ocean. In this respect, this study combines in situ hydrographical data, surface drifter data and direct current meter measurements, with coupled sea ice–ocean models, radar altimeter data and the latest GOCE-based geoid in order...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, H. J.; McGraw, M.

    2009-12-01

    The arctic shoreline is, according to the CIA World Factbook, 45,389 km long. However, a more realistic length from the standpoint of detailed research is the 200,000 km proposed at the 1999 Arctic Coastal Dynamics Workshop. Highly varied in form and material it is dominated by a variety of processes, is relatively remote, is ice-bound much of the year, and has generally been neglected by the scientific community. Before the 20th century, most of the information about its geology, hydrology, geomorphology, and biology was recorded in ship's logs or in explorer's books and was for the most part incidental to the narrative being related. The paucity of specific research is indicated by the relatively few relevant papers included in the more than 100,000 annotated entries published in the 15 volumes of the Arctic Bibliography (1953-1971) and in the nearly as extensive 27 volume bibliography prepared by the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) between 1952 and 1973. Nonetheless, there were some distinctive research endeavors during the early part of the 20th century; e.g., Leffingwell's 1919 Alaskan Arctic Coast observations, Nansen's 1921 strandflat studies, and Zenkovich's 1937 Murmansk research. During that period some organizations devoted to polar research, especially the USSR's Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute and the Scott Polar Research Institute (both in 1920) were established, although the amount of their research that could be considered coastal and arctic was limited. Specific research of the arctic's shoreline was mainly academic until after World War II when military, economic, industrial, and archaeological interests began demanding reliable, contemporary data. At the time numerous organizations with a primary focus on the Arctic were formed. Included are the Arctic Institute of North America (1945), the Snow, Ice, and Permafrost Research Establishment (latter to become CRREL) and the Office of Naval Research's Arctic Research

  12. Mercuric reductase genes (merA) and mercury resistance plasmids in High Arctic snow, freshwater and sea-ice brine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Møller, Annette K; Barkay, Tamar; Hansen, Martin A; Norman, Anders; Hansen, Lars H; Sørensen, Søren J; Boyd, Eric S; Kroer, Niels

    2014-01-01

    Bacterial reduction in Hg(2+) to Hg(0) , mediated by the mercuric reductase (MerA), is important in the biogeochemical cycling of Hg in temperate environments. Little is known about the occurrence and diversity of merA in the Arctic. Seven merA determinants were identified among bacterial isolates from High Arctic snow, freshwater and sea-ice brine. Three determinants in Bacteriodetes, Firmicutes and Actinobacteria showed 99% similar to known merA's. Phylogenetic analysis showed the Bacteroidetes merA to be part of an early lineage in the mer phylogeny, whereas the Betaproteobacteria and Gammaproteobacteria merA appeared to have evolved recently. Several isolates, in which merA was not detected, were able to reduce Hg(2+) , suggesting presence of unidentified merA genes. About 25% of the isolates contained plasmids, two of which encoded mer operons. One plasmid was a broad host-range IncP-α plasmid. No known incompatibility group could be assigned to the others. The presence of conjugative plasmids, and an incongruent distribution of merA within the taxonomic groups, suggests horizontal transfer of merA as a likely mechanism for High Arctic microbial communities to adapt to changing mercury concentration.

  13. Biological productivity and carbon cycling in the Arctic Ocean

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2002-01-01

    Primary production, bacterial production, particulate organic carbon fluxes and organic carbon burial rates were quantified during the summer period of 1999 in the Arctic Ocean via 14C uptake, 3H uptake, 234Th/238U disequilibrium and 210Pbex dating, respectively. The integrated primary production in the water column was as high as 197 mmolC/(m2@d) in the Chukchi shelf and was 3.8 mmolC/(m2@d) in the Canada Basin. These rates are higher than those reported previously. The ratios of bacterial production to primary production in the study region were higher than 0.5, indicating that microbial activity is not depressed but important in cold Arctic waters. 234Th/238U disequilibria were evident at the station in the Canada Basin. The presence of significant 234Th deficiency suggested that scavenging and removal processes are also important to biogeochemical cycles of trace elements in the Arctic Ocean. Particulate organic carbon export flux was estimated to be 1.0 mmolC/(m2@d). Measurements of sediment excess 210Pb profile in the Chukchi shelf allowed us to estimate the amount of organic carbon buried in the bottom sediment, which ranged from 25 to 35 mmolC/(m2@d) and represented about 59%-82% of the mean primary production in the euphotic zone. Overall, our results indicated that the Arctic Ocean has active carbon cycling and is not a biological desert as previously believed. Therefore, the Arctic Ocean may play an important role in the global carbon cycle and climate change.

  14. Intercomparison of atmospheric water vapour measurements at a Canadian High Arctic site

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weaver, Dan; Strong, Kimberly; Schneider, Matthias; Rowe, Penny M.; Sioris, Chris; Walker, Kaley A.; Mariani, Zen; Uttal, Taneil; McElroy, C. Thomas; Vömel, Holger; Spassiani, Alessio; Drummond, James R.

    2017-08-01

    Water vapour is a critical component of the Earth system. Techniques to acquire and improve measurements of atmospheric water vapour and its isotopes are under active development. This work presents a detailed intercomparison of water vapour total column measurements taken between 2006 and 2014 at a Canadian High Arctic research site (Eureka, Nunavut). Instruments include radiosondes, sun photometers, a microwave radiometer, and emission and solar absorption Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectrometers. Close agreement is observed between all combination of datasets, with mean differences ≤ 1.0 kg m-2 and correlation coefficients ≥ 0.98. The one exception in the observed high correlation is the comparison between the microwave radiometer and a radiosonde product, which had a correlation coefficient of 0.92.A variety of biases affecting Eureka instruments are revealed and discussed. A subset of Eureka radiosonde measurements was processed by the Global Climate Observing System (GCOS) Reference Upper Air Network (GRUAN) for this study. Comparisons reveal a small dry bias in the standard radiosonde measurement water vapour total columns of approximately 4 %. A recently produced solar absorption FTIR spectrometer dataset resulting from the MUSICA (MUlti-platform remote Sensing of Isotopologues for investigating the Cycle of Atmospheric water) retrieval technique is shown to offer accurate measurements of water vapour total columns (e.g. average agreement within -5.2 % of GRUAN and -6.5 % of a co-located emission FTIR spectrometer). However, comparisons show a small wet bias of approximately 6 % at the high-latitude Eureka site. In addition, a new dataset derived from Atmospheric Emitted Radiance Interferometer (AERI) measurements is shown to provide accurate water vapour measurements (e.g. average agreement was within 4 % of GRUAN), which usefully enables measurements to be taken during day and night (especially valuable during polar night).

  15. Long photoperiods sustain high pH in Arctic kelp forests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krause-Jensen, Dorte; Marbà, Núria; Sanz-Martin, Marina; Hendriks, Iris E; Thyrring, Jakob; Carstensen, Jacob; Sejr, Mikael Kristian; Duarte, Carlos M

    2016-12-01

    Concern on the impacts of ocean acidification on calcifiers, such as bivalves, sea urchins, and foraminifers, has led to efforts to understand the controls on pH in their habitats, which include kelp forests and seagrass meadows. The metabolism of these habitats can lead to diel fluctuation in pH with increases during the day and declines at night, suggesting no net effect on pH at time scales longer than daily. We examined the capacity of subarctic and Arctic kelps to up-regulate pH in situ and experimentally tested the role of photoperiod in determining the capacity of Arctic macrophytes to up-regulate pH. Field observations at photoperiods of 15 and 24 hours in Greenland combined with experimental manipulations of photoperiod show that photoperiods longer than 21 hours, characteristic of Arctic summers, are conducive to sustained up-regulation of pH by kelp photosynthesis. We report a gradual increase in pH of 0.15 units and a parallel decline in pCO2 of 100 parts per million over a 10-day period in an Arctic kelp forest over midsummer, with ample scope for continued pH increase during the months of continuous daylight. Experimental increase in CO2 concentration further stimulated the capacity of macrophytes to deplete CO2 and increase pH. We conclude that long photoperiods in Arctic summers support sustained up-regulation of pH in kelp forests, with potential benefits for calcifiers, and propose that this mechanism may increase with the projected expansion of Arctic vegetation in response to warming and loss of sea ice.

  16. 100% Retention of Snowpack Derived Nitrogen Over 10 Years in High Arctic Tundra

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choudhary, S.; Tye, A. M.; Young, S. D.; West, H. M.; Phoenix, G. K.

    2013-12-01

    ecosystem sinks for the 15N tracer in the long-term were organic humus soil, followed by bryophytes and then vascular plants, it is concluded that greater N deposition resulting in greater released of N from melting snowpack could significantly enrich the plant N pool and possibly enhance plant growth (with a potential to increase C storage) in the future. Overall, this study shows that high arctic tundra has considerable short- and long term- capacity for retention of snow-melt deposited N, with very tight internal recycling that allows 100% of the initially sequestered N to be retained over 10 years. Such capacity for pollutant N retention may exacerbate the impact that increased N deposition has on high arctic tundra.

  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. 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.

  20. A Convective Cloud Feedback and Spring Arctic Sea Ice Forecasting at High CO2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbot, D. S.; Walker, C. C.; Tziperman, E.

    2008-12-01

    Winter and spring sea ice dramatically cool the Arctic climate during the the coldest seasons of the year and may have remote effects on global climate as well. Accurate forecasting of winter and spring sea ice has significant social and economic benefits. Such forecasting requires the identification and understanding of all the feedbacks that can affect sea ice. A novel convective cloud feedback has recently been proposed in the context of explaining equable climates, e.g., the climate of the Eocene, that might be important for determining future winter and spring sea ice. In this feedback CO2 -initiated warming leads to sea ice reduction, which which allows increased heat and moisture fluxes from the ocean surface, which destabilizes the atmosphere and leads to atmospheric convection. This atmospheric convection produces high and optically thick convective clouds and increases high-altitude moisture levels, both of which trap outgoing longwave radiation and therefore result in a further warming and sea ice loss. Here it is shown that this convective cloud feedback is active during winter in the coupled ocean-sea ice-land-atmosphere global climate models used for the 1%/year CO2 increase to quadrupling scenario of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) fourth assessment report. It is further shown that the convective cloud feedback plays an essential role in the elimination of maximum seasonal (spring) sea ice in NCAR's CCSM model, one of the IPCC models that nearly completely loses spring sea ice. This is done by performing a sensitivity analysis using the atmospheric component of CCSM, run at a CO2 concentration of 1120 ppm, by selectively disabling the convective cloud feedback and the ocean heat transport feedback. The result is that both feedbacks are necessary for the elimination of spring sea ice at this CO2 concentration.

  1. Glacier inputs influence organic matter composition and prokaryotic distribution in a high Arctic fjord (Kongsfjorden, Svalbard)

    KAUST Repository

    Bourgeois, Solveig

    2016-08-23

    With climate change, the strong seasonality and tight pelagic-benthic coupling in the Arctic is expected to change in the next few decades. It is currently unclear how the benthos will be affected by changes of environmental conditions such as supplies of organic matter (OM) from the water column. In the last decade, Kongsfjorden (79°N), a high Arctic fjord in Svalbard influenced by several glaciers and Atlantic water inflow, has been a site of great interest owing to its high sensitivity to climate change, evidenced by a reduction in ice cover and an increase in melting freshwater. To investigate how spatial and seasonal changes in vertical fluxes can impact the benthic compartment of Kongsfjorden, we studied the organic matter characteristics (in terms of quantity and quality) and prokaryotic distribution in sediments from 3 stations along a transect extending from the glacier into the outer fjord in 4 different seasons (spring, summer, autumn and winter) in 2012–2013. The biochemical parameters used to describe the sedimentary organic matter were organic carbon (OC), total nitrogen, bulk stable isotope ratios, pigments (chorophyll-a and phaeopigments) and biopolymeric carbon (BPC), which is the sum of the main macromolecules, i.e. lipids, proteins and carbohydrates. Prokaryotic abundance and distribution were estimated by 4′,6-diamidino-2-phenylindole (DAPI) staining. This study identifies a well-marked quantitative gradient of biogenic compounds throughout all seasons and also highlights a discrepancy between the quantity and quality of sedimentary organic matter within the fjord. The sediments near the glacier were organic-poor (< 0.3%OC), however the high primary productivity in the water column displayed during spring was reflected in summer sediments, and exhibited higher freshness of material at the inner station compared to the outer basin (means C-chlorophyll-a/OC ~ 5 and 1.5%, respectively). However, sediments at the glacier front were depleted

  2. Global View of the Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-01-01

    NASA researchers have new insights into the mysteries of Arctic sea ice, thanks to the unique abilities of Canada's Radarsat satellite. The Arctic is the smallest of the world's four oceans, but it may play a large role in helping scientists monitor Earth's climate shifts.Using Radarsat's special sensors to take images at night and to peer through clouds, NASA researchers can now see the complete ice cover of the Arctic. This allows tracking of any shifts and changes, in unprecedented detail, over the course of an entire winter. The radar-generated, high-resolution images are up to 100 times better than those taken by previous satellites.Using this new information, scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), Pasadena, Calif., can generate comprehensive maps of Arctic sea ice thickness for the first time. 'Before we knew only the extent of the ice cover,' said Dr. Ronald Kwok, JPL principal investigator of a project called Sea Ice Thickness Derived From High Resolution Radar Imagery. 'We also knew that the sea ice extent had decreased over the last 20 years, but we knew very little about ice thickness.''Since sea ice is very thin, about 3 meters (10 feet) or less,'Kwok explained, 'it is very sensitive to climate change.'Until now, observations of polar sea ice thickness have been available for specific areas, but not for the entire polar region.The new radar mapping technique has also given scientists a close look at how the sea ice cover grows and contorts over time. 'Using this new data set, we have the first estimates of how much ice has been produced and where it formed during the winter. We have never been able to do this before, ' said Kwok. 'Through our radar maps of the Arctic Ocean, we can actually see ice breaking apart and thin ice growth in the new openings. 'RADARSAT gives researchers a piece of the overall puzzle every three days by creating a complete image of the Arctic. NASA scientists then put those puzzle pieces together to create a time

  3. Educating for a High Skills Society? The Landscape of Federal Employment, Training and Lifelong Learning Policy in Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibb, Tara; Walker, Judith

    2011-01-01

    Government reports and documents claim that building a knowledge economy and innovative society are key goals in Canada. In this paper, we draw on critical policy analysis to examine 10 Canadian federal government training and employment policies in relation to the government's espoused priorities of innovation and developing a high skills society…

  4. 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...

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. High variability of atmospheric mercury in the summertime boundary layer through the central Arctic Ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Juan; Xie, Zhouqing; Kang, Hui; Li, Zheng; Sun, Chen; Bian, Lingen; Zhang, Pengfei

    2014-08-15

    The biogeochemical cycles of mercury in the Arctic springtime have been intensively investigated due to mercury being rapidly removed from the atmosphere. However, the behavior of mercury in the Arctic summertime is still poorly understood. Here we report the characteristics of total gaseous mercury (TGM) concentrations through the central Arctic Ocean from July to September, 2012. The TGM concentrations varied considerably (from 0.15 ng/m(3) to 4.58 ng/m(3)), and displayed a normal distribution with an average of 1.23 ± 0.61 ng/m(3). The highest frequency range was 1.0-1.5 ng/m(3), lower than previously reported background values in the Northern Hemisphere. Inhomogeneous distributions were observed over the Arctic Ocean due to the effect of sea ice melt and/or runoff. A lower level of TGM was found in July than in September, potentially because ocean emission was outweighed by chemical loss.

  8. 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

  9. Carbon bioavailability in a high Arctic fjord influenced by glacial meltwater, NE Greenland

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Paulsen, Maria Lund; Nielsen, Sophia Elisabeth Bardram; Müller, Jens-Oliver

    2017-01-01

    The land-to-ocean flux of organic carbon is increasing in glacierized regions in response to increasing temperatures in the Arctic (Hood et al., 2015). In order to understand the response of the coastal ecosystem metabolism to the organic carbon input it is essential to determine the bioavailabil...

  10. 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

  11. Biparental incubation patterns in a high-Arctic breeding shorebird: how do pairs divide their duties?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bulla, Martin; Valcu, Mihai; Rutten, Anne L; Kempenaers, Bart

    2014-01-01

    In biparental species, parents may be in conflict over how much they invest into their offspring. To understand this conflict, parental care needs to be accurately measured, something rarely done. Here, we quantitatively describe the outcome of parental conflict in terms of quality, amount, and timing of incubation throughout the 21-day incubation period in a population of semipalmated sandpipers (Calidris pusilla) breeding under continuous daylight in the high Arctic. Incubation quality, measured by egg temperature and incubation constancy, showed no marked difference between the sexes. The amount of incubation, measured as length of incubation bouts, was on average 51min longer per bout for females (11.5h) than for males (10.7h), at first glance suggesting that females invested more than males. However, this difference may have been offset by sex differences in the timing of incubation; females were more often off nest during the warmer period of the day, when foraging conditions were presumably better. Overall, the daily timing of incubation shifted over the incubation period (e.g., for female incubation from evening-night to night-morning) and over the season, but varied considerably among pairs. At one extreme, pairs shared the amount of incubation equally, but one parent always incubated during the colder part of the day; at the other extreme, pairs shifted the start of incubation bouts between days so that each parent experienced similar conditions across the incubation period. Our results highlight how the simultaneous consideration of different aspects of care across time allows sex-specific investment to be more accurately quantified.

  12. Surveys of belugas and narwhals in the Canadian High Arctic in 1996

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stuart Innes

    2002-07-01

    Full Text Available The summer range of belugas (Delphinapterus leucas and narwhals (Monodon monoceros in Prince Regent Inlet, Barrow Strait and Peel Sound in the Canadian High Arctic was surveyed from 31 July to 3 August 1996 with a visual aerial survey of offshore areas and photographic aerial surveys of concentration areas. The visual survey estimate based on the number of belugas visible to the observers using systematic line transect methods was 10,347 (cv = 0.28. This included corrections for whales that were missed by the observers, observations without distance measurements and an estimate of 1,949 (cv=0.22 belugas from a photographic survey in southern Peel Sound. Using data from belugas tagged with satellite-linked time-depth recorders, the estimate was adjusted for individuals that were diving during the survey which resulted in an estimate of 18,930 belugas (cv = 0.28. Finally, counts of belugas in estuaries, corrected for estuarine surface time, were added to provide a complete estimate of 21,213 belugas (95% CI 10,985 to 32,619. The estimated number of narwhals corrected for sightings that were missed by observers was 16,364 (cv = 0.24. Adjusting this for sightings without distance information and correcting for whales that were submerged produced an estimate of 45,358 narwhals (95% CI 23,397 to 87,932.

  13. On the origin of the Amerasia Basin and the High Arctic Large Igneous Province-Results of new aeromagnetic data

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Døssing, Arne; Jackson, H.R.; Matzka, Jürgen

    2013-01-01

    of the Basin remain unaddressed. The difficulty lies in the geodynamic evolution and signature of the Basin being overprinted by excess volcanism of the Alpha-Mendeleev Ridge complex, part of the High Arctic Large Igneous Province (HALIP) and one of the largest (>1 million km2) and most intense magmatic...... as well as large parts of the area between the Lomonosov and southern Alpha Ridges are highly attenuated continental crust formed by poly-phase breakup with LIP volcanic addition. Significantly, our results are consistent with an early ( ~ pre-120 Ma) overall continental scale rotational opening...

  14. Four quasars above redshift 6 discovered by the Canada-France High-z Quasar Survey

    CERN Document Server

    Willott, Chris J; Omont, Alain; Bergeron, Jacqueline; Delfosse, Xavier; Forveille, Thierry; Albert, Loic; Reyle, Celine; Hill, Gary J; Gully-Santiago, Michael; Vinten, Phillip; Crampton, David; Hutchings, John B; Schade, David; Simard, Luc; Sawicki, Marcin; Beelen, Alexandre; Cox, Pierre

    2007-01-01

    The Canada-France High-z Quasar Survey (CFHQS) is an optical survey designed to locate quasars during the epoch of reionization. In this paper we present the discovery of the first four CFHQS quasars at redshift greater than 6, including the most distant known quasar, CFHQS J2329-0301 at z=6.43. We describe the observational method used to identify the quasars and present optical, infrared, and millimeter photometry and optical and near-infrared spectroscopy. We investigate the dust properties of these quasars finding an unusual dust extinction curve for one quasar and a high far-infrared luminosity due to dust emission for another. The mean millimeter continuum flux for CFHQS quasars is substantially lower than that for SDSS quasars at the same redshift, likely due to a correlation with quasar UV luminosity. For two quasars with sufficiently high signal-to-noise optical spectra, we use the spectra to investigate the ionization state of hydrogen at z>5. For CFHQS J1509-1749 at z=6.12, we find significant evol...

  15. The Canada-France Ecliptic Plane Survey (CFEPS) - High Latitude Component

    CERN Document Server

    Petit, J-M; Gladman, B J; Jones, R L; Parker, J Wm; Van Laerhoven, C; Pike, R; Nicholson, P; Bieryla, A; Ashby, M L N; Lawler, S M

    2016-01-01

    We report the orbital distribution of the Trans-Neptunian objects (TNOs) discovered during the High Ecliptic Latitude (HiLat) extension of the Canada-France Ecliptic Plane Survey (CFEPS), conducted from June 2006 to July 2009. The HiLat component was designed to address one of the shortcomings of ecliptic surveys (like CFEPS), their lack of sensitivity to high-inclination objects. We searched 701~deg$^2$ of sky ranging from 12$^\\circ$ to 85$^\\circ$ ecliptic latitude and discovered \\lKBO TNOs, with inclinations between 15$^\\circ$ to 104$^\\circ$. This survey places a very strong constraint on the inclination distribution of the hot component of the classical Kuiper Belt, ruling out any possibility of a large intrinsic fraction of highly inclined orbits. Using the parameterization of \\citet{2001AJ....121.2804B}, the HiLat sample combined with CFEPS imposes a width $14^\\circ \\le \\sigma \\le 15.5^\\circ$, with a best match for $\\sigma = 14.5^\\circ$. HiLat discovered the first retrograde TNO, 2008~KV$_{42}$, with an ...

  16. Consumption guideline concerning cadmium in moose meat in northern British Columbia, Canada

    OpenAIRE

    Jin, Andrew; Joseph-Quinn, Kelly M.

    2004-01-01

    Introduction. Disturbed by reports of high concentrations of cadmium in large land mammals in Arctic Canada, community members wondered if they should eat less moose (Alces alces). Study design. Risk assessment modelling. Methods. We measured cadmium concentrations in moose tissues donated by food hunters. As a conservative assumption, we took the upper limits of the 95% confidence intervals for the means. Cadmium intake from other sources we estimated using risk assessment models. Assuming a...

  17. The growth of shrubs on high Arctic tundra at Bylot Island: impact on snow physical properties and permafrost thermal regime

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domine, Florent; Barrere, Mathieu; Morin, Samuel

    2016-12-01

    With climate warming, shrubs have been observed to grow on Arctic tundra. Their presence is known to increase snow height and is expected to increase the thermal insulating effect of the snowpack. An important consequence would be the warming of the ground, which will accelerate permafrost thaw, providing an important positive feedback to warming. At Bylot Island (73° N, 80° W) in the Canadian high Arctic where bushes of willows (Salix richardsonii Hook) are growing, we have observed the snow stratigraphy and measured the vertical profiles of snow density, thermal conductivity and specific surface area (SSA) in over 20 sites of high Arctic tundra and in willow bushes 20 to 40 cm high. We find that shrubs increase snow height, but only up to their own height. In shrubs, snow density, thermal conductivity and SSA are all significantly lower than on herb tundra. In shrubs, depth hoar which has a low thermal conductivity was observed to grow up to shrub height, while on herb tundra, depth hoar only developed to 5 to 10 cm high. The thermal resistance of the snowpack was in general higher in shrubs than on herb tundra. More signs of melting were observed in shrubs, presumably because stems absorb radiation and provide hotspots that initiate melting. When melting was extensive, thermal conductivity was increased and thermal resistance was reduced, counteracting the observed effect of shrubs in the absence of melting. Simulations of the effect of shrubs on snow properties and on the ground thermal regime were made with the Crocus snow physics model and the ISBA (Interactions between Soil-Biosphere-Atmosphere) land surface scheme, driven by in situ and reanalysis meteorological data. These simulations did not take into account the summer impact of shrubs. They predict that the ground at 5 cm depth at Bylot Island during the 2014-2015 winter would be up to 13 °C warmer in the presence of shrubs. Such warming may however be mitigated by summer effects.

  18. Extremotrophs, extremophiles and broadband pigmentation strategies in a high arctic ice shelf ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2005-06-01

    Remnant ice shelves along the northern coast of Ellesmere Island, Nunavut, Canada ( approximately 83 degrees N) provide a habitat for cryo-tolerant microbial mat communities. Bioassays of bacterial and primary production were undertaken to quantify the short-term physiological response of the mats to changes in key variables that characterize this cryo-ecosystem (salinity, irradiance and temperature). The heterotrophic versus autotrophic community responses to these stressors differed markedly. The heterotrophic bacteria were extremophilic and specifically adapted to ambient conditions on the ice shelf, whereas the autotrophic community had broader tolerance ranges and optima outside the ambient range. This latter, extremotrophic response may be partly due to a diverse suite of pigments including oligosaccharide mycosporine-like amino acids, scytonemins, carotenoids, phycobiliproteins and chlorophylls that absorb from the near UV-B to red wavelengths. These pigments provide a comprehensive broadband strategy for coping with the multiple stressors of high irradiance, variable salinity and low temperatures in this extreme cryo-environment.

  19. Preliminary DIMM and MASS Nighttime Seeing Measurements at PEARL, in the Canadian High Arctic

    CERN Document Server

    Steinbring, Eric; Ngan, Wayne; Murowinski, Rick; Leckie, Brian; Carlberg, Ray

    2013-01-01

    Results of deploying a Differential Image Motion Monitor (DIMM) and a DIMM combined with a Multi-Aperture Scintillation Sensor (MASS/DIMM) are reported for campaigns in 2011 and 2012 on the roof of the Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Laboratory (PEARL). This facility is on a 610-m-high ridge at latitude 80 degrees N, near the Eureka weatherstation on Ellesmere Island, Canada. The median seeing at 8-m elevation is 0.85 arcsec or better based on DIMM data alone, but is dependent on wind direction, and likely includes a component due to the PEARL building itself. Results with MASS/DIMM yield a median seeing less than 0.76 arcsec. A semi-empirical model of seeing versus ground wind speed is introduced which allows agreement between these datasets, and with previous boundary-layer profiling by lunar scintillometry from the same location. This further suggests that best 20 percentile seeing reaches 0.53 arcsec, of which typically 0.30 arcsec is due to the free atmosphere. Some discussion for guiding future s...

  20. Seasonal variability in Arctic temperatures during the early Eocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eberle, J. J.; Fricke, H. C.; Humphrey, J.; Hackett, L.; Newbrey, M.; Hutchison, H.

    2009-12-01

    As a deep time analog for today’s rapidly warming Arctic region, early Eocene (~53 Ma) rocks on Ellesmere Island, Arctic Canada (~79° N.) preserve evidence of lush swamp forests inhabited by turtles, alligators, primates, tapirs, and hippo-like Coryphodon. Although the rich flora and fauna of the early Eocene Arctic imply warmer, wetter conditions that at present, quantitative estimates of Eocene Arctic climate are rare. By analyzing oxygen isotope ratios of biogenic phosphate from mammal, fish, and turtle fossils from a single locality on central Ellesmere Island, we provide estimates of early Eocene Arctic temperature, including mean annual temperature (MAT) of ~ 8° C, mean annual range in temperature (MART) of ~ 16.5° C, warm month mean temperature (WMMT) of 16 - 19° C, and cold month mean temperature (CMMT) of 0 - 1° C. Our seasonal range in temperature is similar to the range in estimated MAT obtained using different proxies. In particular, unusually high estimates of early Eocene Arctic MAT and sea surface temperature (SST) by others that are based upon the distribution of branched glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraether (GDGT) membrane lipids in terrestrial soil bacteria and marine Crenarchaeota fall within our range of WMMT, suggesting a bias towards summer values. Consequently, caution should be taken when using these methods to infer MAT and SST that, in turn, are used to constrain climate models. From a paleontologic perspective, our temperature estimates verify that alligators and tortoises, by way of nearest living relative-based climatic inference, are viable paleoclimate proxies for mild, above-freezing year-round temperatures. Although in both of these reptiles, past temperature tolerances were greater than in their living descendants.

  1. The little auk population at the North Water Polynya. How palaeohistory, archaeology and anthropology adds new dimensions to the ecology of a high arctic seabird

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mosbech, Anders; Johansen, Kasper Lambert; Lyngs, Peter;

    The little auk is the most numerous seabird in the north Atlantic and it has its most important breeding area on the eastern shores of the high arctic North Water Polynya in Northwest Greenland. Here an estimated population of 30 mill. pairs breeds in huge colonies. The little auk is a high arctic...... specialist feeding its chicks with large lipid-rich high arctic copepods. With warming of the sea the copepod species assemblage is expected to change to smaller less fatty copepod species with energetic and potentially population consequences for little auks. This presentation takes a broad...... interdisciplinary approach to the analysis of little auk ecology in times of change. Recent and ongoing little auk studies at the North Water Polynya have shown the high densities of little auks (about 2 pairs/m2) breeding under the stones in the vast scree slopes, the highly specialized chick diet (80 % Calanus...

  2. The genetic prehistory of the New World Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Raghavan, Maanasa; DeGiorgio, Michael; Albrechtsen, Anders

    2014-01-01

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

  3. 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

  4. Arctic Newcomers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tonami, Aki

    2013-01-01

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

  5. 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

  6. 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

  7. 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...

  8. Transitions in high-Arctic vegetation growth patterns and ecosystem productivity tracked with automated cameras from 2000 to 2013

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Westergaard-Nielsen, Andreas; Lund, Magnus; Pedersen, Stine Højlund

    2017-01-01

    Climate-induced changes in vegetation phenology at northern latitudes are still poorly understood. Continued monitoring and research are therefore needed to improve the understanding of abiotic drivers. Here we used 14 years of time lapse imagery and climate data from high-Arctic Northeast...... Greenland to assess the seasonal response of a dwarf shrub heath, grassland, and fen, to inter-annual variation in snow-cover, soil moisture, and air and soil temperatures. A late snow melt and start of growing season is counterbalanced by a fast greenup and a tendency to higher peak greenness values. Snow...

  9. 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.

  10. Measurements of an Intrusion of Water Vapor into the High Arctic and its Effect on Wintertime Radiation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nott, G. J.; Doyle, J. G.; Lesins, G. B.; Thackray, C. P.; Perro, C. W.; Duck, T. J.; Drummond, J. R.

    2010-12-01

    Water vapor is the most important greenhouse gas, yet little is known about it in the High Arctic during winter due to a historic lack of measurements and difficulties associated with satellite retrievals. With cold temperatures and a very stable boundary layer, the water vapor mixing ratio peaks around only 0.3 g kg-1. Any influxes of moist air from more moderate latitudes are thus likely to have a significant impact on Arctic tropospheric processes and the radiation budget. With lidar and accompanying radiometer measurements at Eureka (79°59'N, 85°56'W) we present one highly dynamic instance of such an intrusion from the winter of 2009/10. Measurements with the Canadian Network for the Detection of Atmospheric Change (CANDAC) Rayleigh/Mie/Raman lidar, shown in the figure, display distinct and seperate wet and dry air parcels during the case study. Two significant influxes of moist air (mixing ratio peaking at 1.2 g kg-1) are observed while aerosol profiles show associated cloud and precipitation. An animated map of precipitable water measured by the Microwave Humidity Sounder will be presented that shows the moist air originating over the Bering Sea and sweeping north-east into the Arctic, reaching Eureka on Feburary 9. Radiometer measurements of downwelling radiation during this time period show that the influx of water vapor alone caused a 13% increase in longwave radiation at the surface. A radiative transfer model (SBDART) has been used to isolate the effect of the water vapor, temperature, and cloud cover variations associated with this intrusion, on the overall radiation flux. Only the single event will be presented in detail however longer term data sets of water vapor indicate that such intrusions happen once or twice a month each winter. With such significant influxes of water vapor it is possible that these intrusions significantly affect the average wintertime radiation budget. Lidar measurements of water vapor mixing ratio over Eureka showing two

  11. Kelp and seaweed feeding by High-Arctic wild reindeer under extreme winter conditions

    OpenAIRE

    2012-01-01

    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 (Rang...

  12. Estimating Summer Ocean Heating in the Arctic Ice Pack Using High-Resolution Satellite Imagery

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-01

    must be focused on the observed drastic changes in the region (from U.S. Navy 2014)........................................6 Figure 5. Photograph...just one of the many consequences of the increase in open water in the Arctic, and why the Navy must be focused on the observed drastic changes in...the ITP Program website, the underwater package houses a low power CTD as well as mechanical wire crawler mechanism to traverse the profiler up and

  13. Ecological legacies of Indigenous fire management in high-latitude coastal temperate rainforests, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoffman, K.; Lertzman, K. P.; Starzomski, B. M.

    2016-12-01

    Anthropogenic burning is considered to have little impact on coastal temperate rainforest fire regimes in the Pacific Northwest (PNW) of North America, yet few long-term fire histories have been reconstructed in these forests. We use a multidisciplinary approach to reconstruct the ecological impact, scale, and legacies of historic fire regime variability in high-latitude coastal temperate rainforests located in British Columbia, Canada. We map seven centuries of fire activity with fire scars and records of stand establishment, and examine patterns in the distribution and composition of vegetation to assess whether fire was historically used as a tool for resource management. We conduct a paired study of 20 former Indigenous habitation and control sites across a 100 km2 island group to relate historic fire activity with long-term patterns of human land use and contemporary lightning strike densities. Fires were significantly associated with the locations of former Indigenous habitation sites, low and mixed in severity, and likely intentionally used to influence the composition and structure of vegetation, thus increasing the productivity of culturally important plants such as western redcedar, berry-producing shrubs, and bracken fern. Centuries of repeated anthropogenic burning have resulted in a mosaic of vegetation types in different stages of succession. These data are directly relevant to the management of contemporary forests as they do not support the widespread contention that old growth coastal temperate rainforests in this region are pristine landscapes where fire is rare, but more likely the result of long-term human land use practices.

  14. Is religiosity positively associated with school connectedness: evidence from high school students in Atlantic Canada?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Azagba, Sunday; Asbridge, Mark; Langille, Donald B

    2014-12-01

    School connectedness (SC) is associated with decreased student risk behavior and better health and social outcomes. While a considerable body of research has examined the factors associated with SC, there is limited evidence about the particular role of religiosity in shaping levels of SC. Employing data reported by junior and senior high school students from Atlantic Canada, this study examines whether religiosity is positively associated with SC and whether such associations differ by gender. We tested the association between SC and religiosity using a random intercept multilevel logistic regression. The between-school variability in SC was first determined by our estimating a null or empty model; three different model specifications that included covariates were estimated: in Model 1 we adjusted for gender, age, academic performance, parental education, and living arrangement; in Model 2 for sensation seeking and subjective social status in addition to Model 1 variables; and in Model 3 we added substance use to the analysis. Our multilevel regression analyses showed that religiosity was protectively associated with lower SC across the three model specifications when both genders were examined together. In gender-stratified analyses we found similar protective associations of religiosity, with lower SC for both males and females in all three models. Given the overwhelming positive impact of SC on a range of health, social and school outcomes, it is important to understand the role of religiosity, among other factors, that may be modified to enhance student's connectedness to school.

  15. Atmospheric inputs of Ag and Tl to the Arctic: comparison of a high resolution snow pit (AD 1994-2004) with a firn (AD 1860-1996) and an ice core (previous 16,000 yr).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krachler, Michael; Zheng, Jiancheng; Fisher, David; Shotyk, William

    2008-07-25

    Applying strict clean room techniques and sector field ICP-MS, a total of 567 ice and snow samples from Devon Ice Cap, Arctic Canada, have been analysed for silver (Ag) and thallium (Tl), providing a continuous record of atmospheric deposition of both elements for the past approximately 16,000 yr. Concentrations of Ag and Tl ranged from 0.02 to 5.84 pg/g and from 0.03 to 3.40 pg/g, respectively. The natural Tl/Sc background ratio established with ice samples dating between 10,590 and 15,010 yr BP, amounted to 0.11+/-0.03 which is in good agreement with the corresponding value of 0.107 reported for the Upper Continental Crust (UCC). The Ag/Sc background ratio in ice (0.09+/-0.06), in turn, is much more variable and approximately 10-times higher than UCC values. The high temporal resolution provided by 45 samples from the 5 m snow pit representing the period AD 1994 to 2004, revealed the greatest elemental concentrations as well as accumulation rates during the winter months when air masses reach the Arctic predominantly from Eurasia. The greatest Sc concentrations, however, are also found during winter months which clearly reflect strong seasonal variations in atmospheric dust inputs. Enrichment factors calculated for both elements (Ag, Tl) using Sc show contrasting behaviours, with the maximum EF for Tl (up to 48) during summer when air masses arriving to the Arctic are predominantly from North America, probably reflecting coal burning, base metal mining and smelting. The greatest enrichments of Ag (up to 17), on the other hand, tend generally to be found in winter, although some enrichment maxima corresponding to summer months are also seen. While modern Ag EF are comparable to those corresponding to ancient (back to ca. 3 k yr) anthropogenic activities, modern Tl EF clearly exceed the impact of Medieval, Roman and Greek/Phoenician civilization. Accumulation rates during the past decade have been variable (mean 36 and 130 ng/m(2)/yr for Ag and Tl, respectively

  16. Quantification of subaerial and episodic subglacial erosion rates on high latitude upland plateaus: Cumberland Peninsula, Baffin Island, Arctic Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margreth, Annina; Gosse, John C.; Dyke, Arthur S.

    2016-02-01

    Long-term rates of subaerial and episodic subglacial erosion by predominately cold-based ice cover are determined for tors on weathered plateaus on Cumberland Peninsula. By measuring terrestrial cosmogenic nuclide concentrations in differentially weathered surfaces on a given tor, we reconstruct the complex exposure and erosion history involving recurring cold-based ice cover. The style and rate of subaerial and subglacial erosion at multiple tor sites on Cumberland Peninsula are assessed with a Monte Carlo approach that computes plausible exposure histories based on a proxy record of global ice volume. Constant subaerial erosion rates by weathering are low (tors located on coastal ridge crests that have likely never been glaciated. Summit plateaus intermittently covered by cold-based ice throughout the Quaternary have experienced episodic subglacial erosion by plucking of fractured bedrock with rates between 1 and 16 mm ka-1. Variation of episodic erosion rates is associated with topographic position of the sampled tors and bedrock fracture density. Most of the tors were last glacially plucked in pre-ultimate glaciations, not during the Wisconsinan glaciation. Furthermore, the new approach provides evidence for the extent of ice coverage during the late Wisconsinan, which is significant if no erratics are available for exposure dating. Despite late Pleistocene intervals of ice cover and glacial plucking, tor-studded landscapes of Cumberland Peninsula are of considerable antiquity.

  17. 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

  18. Persistent observations of the Arctic from highly elliptical orbits using multispectral, wide field of view day-night imagers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Puschell, Jeffery J.; Johnson, David; Miller, Steven

    2014-09-01

    Persistent satellite observations are essential for monitoring and understanding Earth's environmentally sensitive and rapidly changing Arctic region. Compact wide-field-of-view imagers aboard satellites in Highly Elliptical Orbit (HEO) could stare at the Arctic and collect multispectral, high dynamic range visible and near-infrared imagery with sensitivity similar to that of the Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS) Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) Day/Night Band (DNB) in sun synchronous polar orbit. These HEO Day/Night Imagers (HDNIs) provide high contrast visible wavelength imagery through the long polar night. Their dynamic range -- extending from the brightest sunlit clouds, ice and snow to reflected moonlight from open water -- enables cloud, ice and sea surface discrimination even under very low light and low thermal contrast conditions. Rapidly refreshed HDNI data results in frequent updates to key environmental products such as cloud imagery and microphysical properties, ice and open water distribution (including real-time maps of where leads are opening and new ice is forming), vector ice motion and vector polar winds from cloud motion. The relatively small size of HDNIs makes them ideal for deployment as a hosted payload or as the primary payload onboard a small satellite.

  19. 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.

  20. Glacier surface temperatures in the Canadian High Arctic, 2000–15

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mortimer, Colleen; Sharp, Martin; Wouters, Bert

    2016-01-01

    Canada's Queen Elizabeth Islands (QEI) contain ~14% of the world's glacier and ice-cap area. Sparse in-situ measurements indicate that interannual variability in glacier surface mass balance in this region is driven primarily by variations in summer melt, and that the annual surface mass balance of

  1. 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.

  2. High Arctic plant phenology is determined by snowmelt patterns but duration of phenological periods is fixed: an example of periodicity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Semenchuk, Philipp R.; Gillespie, Mark A. K.; Rumpf, Sabine B.; Baggesen, Nanna; Elberling, Bo; Cooper, Elisabeth J.

    2016-12-01

    The duration of specific periods within a plant’s life cycle are critical for plant growth and performance. In the High Arctic, the start of many of these phenological periods is determined by snowmelt date, which may change in a changing climate. It has been suggested that the end of these periods during late-season are triggered by external cues, such as day length, light quality or temperature, leading to the hypothesis that earlier or later snowmelt dates will lengthen or shorten the duration of these periods, respectively, and thereby affect plant performance. We tested whether snowmelt date controls phenology and phenological period duration in High Arctic Svalbard using a melt timing gradient from natural and experimentally altered snow depths. We investigated the response of early- and late-season phenophases from both vegetative and reproductive phenological periods of eight common species. We found that all phenophases follow snowmelt patterns, irrespective of timing of occurrence, vegetative or reproductive nature. Three of four phenological period durations based on these phenophases were fixed for most species, defining the studied species as periodic. Periodicity can thus be considered an evolutionary trait leading to disadvantages compared with aperiodic species and we conclude that the mesic and heath vegetation types in Svalbard are at risk of being outcompeted by invading, aperiodic species from milder biomes.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. 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

  6. The Caledonian suture in the high Arctic? New data from the Chukchi Borderland, Amerasia Basin

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Brien, T.; Brumley, K. J.; Miller, E. L.; Mayer, L. A.

    2013-12-01

    The Chukchi Borderland (CB) is a bathymetric high in the Arctic Ocean that is extended by N-S and E-W striking faults. Based on sediment cores of talus slope fragments at the base of the Northwind Ridge (NWR), basement of the CB was previously interpreted as a Paleozoic platform sequence comparable to passive margin strata of western Laurentia (Grantz et al., 1998). The discovery of Silurian (~430 Ma) orthogneiss dredged from a fault scarp in the central CB suggests instead that the CB is a displaced fragment of the Caledonian orogen (Brumley et al., 2008). U-Pb geochronology of zircon suites from rocks dredged from the NWR and central CB fault scarps help resolve the make-up of the CB basement. Samples from the central CB are believed to represent the country rocks of the previously dated Silurian orthogneiss. They consist mostly of paragneiss and lesser orthogneiss intruded by leucosomal segregations, all deformed and metamorphosed to amphibolite facies with assemblages Qtz + Kfs + Plag + Bt + Grt × Ms × Chl (retrograde) with accessory zircon, sphene and apatite. The abundance of Kfs + Plag + Bt in paragneiss samples suggest a volcanogenic sediment protolith. Dynamic recrystallization of quartz by grain-boundary migration and recrystallization/myrmekite development along the edges of feldspar crystals suggest final deformation at temperatures of ~450 C. U-Pb geochronology of zircon from an orthogneiss sample from the central CB yields an age of 499.2 × 0.9 Ma with late Neoproterozoic (600 Ma) and Mesoproterozoic - early Paleoproterozoic (1100-1700 Ma) grains. Detrital zircon geochronology from four paragneiss samples show a broad range of ages between 480-650 Ma with a dominant age peak ~500 Ma. Lesser, mostly discordant, Mesoproterozoic and Paleoproterozoic zircons are also present. The paragneiss sampled represent an arc-proximal sediment intruded by Silurian granitoids. Dredge samples from the NWR consist of deformed and metamorphosed calcareous sandstones

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Mesoscale high-resolution modeling of extreme wind speeds over western water areas of the Russian Arctic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Platonov, Vladimir S.; Kislov, Alexander V.

    2016-11-01

    A statistical analysis of extreme weather events over coastal areas of the Russian Arctic based on observational data has revealed many interesting features of wind velocity distributions. It has been shown that the extremes contain data belonging to two different statistical populations. Each of them is reliably described by a Weibull distribution. According to the standard terminology, these sets of extremes are named ‘black swans’ and ‘dragons’. The ‘dragons’ are responsible for most extremes, surpassing the ‘black swans’ by 10 - 30 %. Since the data of the global climate model INM-CM4 do not contain ‘dragons’, the wind speed extremes are investigated on the mesoscale using the COSMO-CLM model. The modelling results reveal no differences between the ‘swans’ and ‘dragons’ situations. It could be associated with the poor sample data used. However, according to many case studies and modeling results we assume that it is caused by a rare superposition of large-scale synoptic factors and many local meso- and microscale factors (surface, coastline configuration, etc.). Further studies of extreme wind speeds in the Arctic, such as ‘black swans’ and ‘dragons’, are necessary to focus on non-hydrostatic high-resolution atmospheric modelling using downscaling techniques.

  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 (PLoS ONE 10(9): e0136536.

  12. Scaling properties of Arctic sea ice deformation in high-resolution viscous-plastic sea ice models and satellite observations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hutter, Nils; Losch, Martin; Menemenlis, Dimitris

    2017-04-01

    Sea ice models with the traditional viscous-plastic (VP) rheology and very high grid resolution can resolve leads and deformation rates that are localised along Linear Kinematic Features (LKF). In a 1-km pan-Arctic sea ice-ocean simulation, the small scale sea-ice deformations in the Central Arctic are evaluated with a scaling analysis in relation to satellite observations of the Envisat Geophysical Processor System (EGPS). A new coupled scaling analysis for data on Eulerian grids determines the spatial and the temporal scaling as well as the coupling between temporal and spatial scales. The spatial scaling of the modelled sea ice deformation implies multi-fractality. The spatial scaling is also coupled to temporal scales and varies realistically by region and season. The agreement of the spatial scaling and its coupling to temporal scales with satellite observations and models with the modern elasto-brittle rheology challenges previous results with VP models at coarse resolution where no such scaling was found. The temporal scaling analysis, however, shows that the VP model does not fully resolve the intermittency of sea ice deformation that is observed in satellite data.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Arctic-HYCOS: a Large Sample observing system for estimating freshwater fluxes in the drainage basin of the Arctic Ocean

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pietroniro, Al; Korhonen, Johanna; Looser, Ulrich; Hardardóttir, Jórunn; Johnsrud, Morten; Vuglinsky, Valery; Gustafsson, David; Lins, Harry F.; Conaway, Jeffrey S.; Lammers, Richard; Stewart, Bruce; Abrate, Tommaso; Pilon, Paul; Sighomnou, Daniel; Arheimer, Berit

    2015-04-01

    The Arctic region is an important regulating component of the global climate system, and is also experiencing a considerable change during recent decades. More than 10% of world's river-runoff flows to the Arctic Ocean and there is evidence of changes in its fresh-water balance. However, about 30% of the Arctic basin is still ungauged, with differing monitoring practices and data availability from the countries in the region. A consistent system for monitoring and sharing of hydrological information throughout the Arctic region is thus of highest interest for further studies and monitoring of the freshwater flux to the Arctic Ocean. The purpose of the Arctic-HYCOS project is to allow for collection and sharing of hydrological data. Preliminary 616 stations were identified with long-term daily discharge data available, and around 250 of these already provide online available data in near real time. This large sample will be used in the following scientific analysis: 1) to evaluate freshwater flux to the Arctic Ocean and Seas, 2) to monitor changes and enhance understanding of the hydrological regime and 3) to estimate flows in ungauged regions and develop models for enhanced hydrological prediction in the Arctic region. The project is intended as a component of the WMO (World Meteorological Organization) WHYCOS (World Hydrological Cycle Observing System) initiative, covering the area of the expansive transnational Arctic basin with participation from Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russian Federation, Sweden and United States of America. The overall objective is to regularly collect, manage and share high quality data from a defined basic network of hydrological stations in the Arctic basin. The project focus on collecting data on discharge and possibly sediment transport and temperature. Data should be provisional in near-real time if available, whereas time-series of historical data should be provided once quality assurance has been completed. The

  16. Assessment of High-Resolution Simulations of Precipitation and Temperature Characteristics Over Western Canada Using WRF Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asong, Z. E.

    2016-12-01

    Lack of accurate estimates of precipitation are an important limitation for hydrological and earth systems modelling in Canada. Ground-based measurements are inevitably limited, given the large land area and small population density, fail to capture the effects of mountain topography in important runoff-producing areas and suffer from gross inaccuracies associated with cold climate precipitation processes. The capability of the current generation of atmospheric models to represent precipitation is therefore of major interest for hydrological practice. The skill of a high-resolution 4-km convection resolving regional climate model (RCM)―Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) in capturing the statistics of daily-scale precipitation (P) and temperature (T) over western Canada within the period 2002 - 2013, using observational data sets for comparison is evaluated in this study. We analyze not only the mean pattern of P and T distributions, but also the inter-annual variability and trends in higher order climate statistics such as wet-dry day frequency, spell lengths, 95th percentile daily maximum T, 5th percentile daily minimum T, and 95th percentile daily P are evaluated against ground observations. This preliminary assessment should enable more informed application of high-resolution RCMs for the investigation of current and future changes in socio-economic and environmentally relevant hydro-climatic characteristics over this topographically complex region of western Canada.

  17. 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

  18. 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.

  19. Applying High Resolution Imagery to Understand the Role of Dynamics in the Diminishing Arctic Sea Ice Cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-09-30

    Role of Dynamics in the Diminishing Arctic Sea Ice Cover ” Dr. Sinead L. Farrell University of Maryland, ESSIC, 5825 University Research Court...day Arctic ice cover , enabling the improvement of models used to forecast ice drift. APPROACH Our research is centered on the application of...resolution visible band imagery for deriving geophysical information on the sea ice pack of the Arctic Ocean , and improve understanding of key

  20. Applying High Resolution Imagery to Understand the Role of Dynamics in the Diminishing Arctic Sea Ice Cover

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-30

    melt and freeze onset dates. REFERENCES Hutchings, J. K., et al. (2014), Sea Ice Deformation in the Arctic from 2000-2010, Geophys. Res. Lett., under...Eos, Vol. 92, No. 7, pp. 53-54. Richter-Menge, J., and S. L. Farrell (2013), Arctic Sea Ice Conditions in Spring 2009 - 2013 Prior to Melt ...refereed] Richter-Menge, J., and S. L. Farrell (2013), Arctic Sea Ice Conditions in Spring 2009 - 2013 Prior to Melt , Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 5888

  1. International arctic systems for observing the atmosphere

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Uttal, Taneil; Starkweather, Sandra; Drummond, James R.;

    2016-01-01

    IASOA activities and partnerships were initiated as a part of the 2007-2009 International Polar Year (IPY) and are expected to continue for many decades as a legacy program. The IASOA focus is on coordinating intensive measurements of the Arctic atmosphere collected in the U.S., Canada, Russia, N...

  2. Shallow freshwater ecosystems of the circumpolar Arctic

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rautio, Milla; Dufresne, France; Laurion, Isabelle

    2011-01-01

    This review provides a synthesis of limnological data and conclusions from studies on ponds and small lakes at our research sites in Subarctic and Arctic Canada, Alaska, northern Scandinavia, and Greenland. Many of these water bodies contain large standing stocks of benthic microbial mats that gr...

  3. Seasonal Change in Trophic Niche of Adfluvial Arctic Grayling (Thymallus arcticus and Coexisting Fishes in a High-Elevation Lake System.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kyle A Cutting

    Full Text Available 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.

  4. Analysis of trophic interactions reveals highly plastic response to climate change in a tri-trophic High-Arctic ecosystem

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mortensen, Lars O.; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Hoye, Toke T.

    2016-01-01

    -Arctic tri-trophic system of flowers, insects and waders (Charadriiformes), with latent factors representing phenology (timing of life history events) and performance (abundance or reproduction success) for each trophic level. The effects derived from the model demonstrated that the time of snowmelt directly...... from the tri-trophic community presented here emphasise that effects of climate on species in consumer-resource systems may propagate through trophic levels...

  5. Projected changes to high temperature events for Canada based on a regional climate model ensemble

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jeong, Dae Il; Sushama, Laxmi; Diro, Gulilat Tefera; Khaliq, M. Naveed; Beltrami, Hugo; Caya, Daniel

    2016-05-01

    Extreme hot spells can have significant impacts on human society and ecosystems, and therefore it is important to assess how these extreme events will evolve in a changing climate. In this study, the impact of climate change on hot days, hot spells, and heat waves, over 10 climatic regions covering Canada, based on 11 regional climate model (RCM) simulations from the North American Regional Climate Change Assessment Program for the June to August summer period is presented. These simulations were produced with six RCMs driven by four Atmosphere-Ocean General Circulation Models (AOGCM), for the A2 emission scenario, for the current 1970-1999 and future 2040-2069 periods. Two types of hot days, namely HD-1 and HD-2, defined respectively as days with only daily maximum temperature (Tmax) and both Tmax and daily minimum temperature (Tmin) exceeding their respective thresholds (i.e., period-of-record 90th percentile of Tmax and Tmin values), are considered in the study. Analogous to these hot days, two types of hot spells, namely HS-1 and HS-2, are identified as spells of consecutive HD-1 and HD-2 type hot days. In the study, heat waves are defined as periods of three or more consecutive days, with Tmax above 32 °C threshold. Results suggest future increases in the number of both types of hot days and hot spell events for the 10 climatic regions considered. However, the projected changes show high spatial variability and are highly dependent on the RCM and driving AOGCM combination. Extreme hot spell events such as HS-2 type hot spells of longer duration are expected to experience relatively larger increases compared to hot spells of moderate duration, implying considerable heat related environmental and health risks. Regionally, the Great Lakes, West Coast, Northern Plains, and Maritimes regions are found to be more affected due to increases in the frequency and severity of hot spells and/or heat wave characteristics, requiring more in depth studies for these regions

  6. Gullies on Mars: Origin by snow and ice melting and potential for life based on possible analogs from Devon Island, High Arctic

    OpenAIRE

    Lee, P; Cockell, C. S.; McKay, C. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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

  9. 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].

  10. 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...

  11. 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; Søborg, Ditte Andreasen; Al-Soud, Waleed Abu

    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...

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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

    controlling the internal build up of heat leading to potential self-incineration. However, site specific measurements of temperature-dependent heat production as well as simulation results show that the heat produced from pyrite oxidation alone cannot cause such a temperature increase and that processes......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...... as the release of AMD normally is limited by permafrost. Here we show that temperatures within a 20 year old heat-producing waste rock pile in Svalbard (78°N) can be modelled by the one-dimensional heat and water flow model (CoupModel) with a new temperature-dependent heat-production module that includes both...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-12-01

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

  16. The Arctic zone: possibilities and risks of development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sentsov, A.; Bolsunovskaya, Y.; Melnikovich, E.

    2016-09-01

    The authors analyze the Arctic region innovative possibilities from the perspective of political ideology and strategy. The Arctic region with its natural resources and high economic potential attracts many companies and it has become an important area of transnational development. At present, the Arctic region development is of great importance in terms of natural resource management and political system development. However, the most important development issue in the Arctic is a great risk of different countries’ competing interests in economic, political, and legal context. These are challenges for international partnership creating in the Arctic zone, Russian future model developing for the Arctic, and recognition of the Arctic as an important resource for the Russians. The Russian economic, military, and political expansion in the Arctic region has the potential to strengthen the national positions. The authors present interesting options for minimizing and eliminating political risks during the Arctic territories development and define an effective future planning model for the Russian Arctic.

  17. 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

  18. Arctic smoke - record high air pollution levels in the European Arctic due to agricultural fires in Eastern Europe in spring 2006

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stohl, A.; Berg, T.; Burkhart, J. F.; Fjæraa, A. M.; Forster, C.; Herber, A.; Hov, Ø.; Lunder, C.; McMillan, W. W.; Oltmans, S.; Shiobara, M.; Simpson, D.; Solberg, S.; Stebel, K.; Ström, J.; Tørseth, K.; Treffeisen, R.; Virkkunen, K.; Yttri, K. E.

    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 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 deposition of the smoke

  19. Breeding on the extreme edge : Modulation of the adrenocortical response to acute stress in two High Arctic passerines

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Walker, Brian G; Meddle, Simone L; Romero, L Michael; Landys, MM; Reneerkens, Jeroen; Wingfield, John C.

    2015-01-01

    Arctic weather in spring is unpredictable and can also be extreme, so Arctic-breeding birds must be flexible in their breeding to deal with such variability. Unpredictability in weather conditions will only intensify with climate change and this in turn could affect reproductive capability of migrat

  20. Distribution and air-sea exchange of current-use pesticides (CUPs) from East Asia to the high Arctic Ocean.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhong, Guangcai; Xie, Zhiyong; Cai, Minghong; Möller, Axel; Sturm, Renate; Tang, Jianhui; Zhang, Gan; He, Jianfeng; Ebinghaus, Ralf

    2012-01-03

    Surface seawater and marine boundary layer air samples were collected on the ice-breaker R/V Xuelong (Snow Dragon) from the East China Sea to the high Arctic (33.23-84.5° N) in July to September 2010 and have been analyzed for six current-use pesticides (CUPs): trifluralin, endosulfan, chlorothalonil, chlorpyrifos, dacthal, and dicofol. In all oceanic air samples, the six CUPs were detected, showing highest level (>100 pg/m(3)) in the Sea of Japan. Gaseous CUPs basically decreased from East Asia (between 36.6 and 45.1° N) toward Bering and Chukchi Seas. The dissolved CUPs in ocean water ranged widely from air. Trifluralin in seawater was relatively high in the Sea of Japan (35.2° N) and evenly distributed between 36.9 and 72.5° N, but it remained below the detection limit at the highest northern latitudes in Chukchi Sea. In contrast with other CUPs, concentrations of chlorothalonil and dacthal were more abundant in Chukchi Sea and in East Asia. The air-sea gas exchange of CUPs was generally dominated by net deposition. Latitudinal trends of fugacity ratios of α-endosulfan, chlorothalonil, and dacthal showed stronger deposition of these compounds in East Asia than in Chukchi Sea, while trifluralin showed stronger deposition in Chukchi Sea (-455 ± 245 pg/m(2)/day) than in the North Pacific (-241 ± 158 pg/m(2)/day). Air-sea gas exchange of chlorpyrifos varied from net volatilizaiton in East Asia (<40° N) to equilibrium or net deposition in the North Pacific and the Arctic.

  1. High Arctic flowering phenology and plant-pollinator interactions in response to delayed snow melt and simulated warming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillespie, Mark A. K.; Baggesen, Nanna; Cooper, Elisabeth J.

    2016-11-01

    The projected alterations to climate in the High Arctic are likely to result in changes to the short growing season, particularly with varying predicted effects on winter snowfall, the timing of summer snowmelt and air temperatures. These changes are likely to affect the phenology of interacting species in a variety of ways, but few studies have investigated the effects of combined climate drivers on plant-pollinator interactions in the High Arctic. In this study, we alter the timing of flowering phenology using a field manipulation experiment in which snow depth is increased using snow fences and temperatures are enhanced by open-top chambers (OTCs). We used this experiment to quantify the combined effects of treatments on the flowering phenology of six dominant plant species (Dryas octopetala, Cassiope tetragona, Bistorta vivipara, Saxifraga oppositifolia, Stellaria crassipes and Pedicularis hirsuita), and to simulate differing responses to climate between plants and pollinators in a subset of plots. Flowers were counted regularly throughout the growing season of 2015, and insect visitors were caught on flowers during standardised observation sessions. As expected, deep snow plots had delayed snow melt timing and this in turn delayed the first and peak flowering dates of the plants and shortened the prefloration period overall. The OTCs counteracted the delay in first and peak flowering to some extent. There was no effect of treatment on length of flowering season, although for all variables there were species-specific responses. The insect flower-visitor community was species poor, and although evidence of disruption to phenological overlaps was not found, the results do highlight the vulnerability of the plant-pollinator network in this system with differing phenological shifts between insects and plants and reduced visitation rates to flowers in plots with deep snow.

  2. Temporal sequencing of annual spring runoff in major Arctic-draining rivers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmed, R.; Prowse, T. D.; Dibike, Y. B.; Bonsal, B. R.

    2012-12-01

    For northern Arctic-draining rivers, the spring freshet is the dominant annual discharge event producing the majority of freshwater inflow to the Arctic Ocean. Freshwater storage and circulation within the ocean are affected by seasonality of the spring freshet, which can also have impacts on the Arctic cryosphere, biota and linkages to global climate through thermohaline circulation. Considering the potential consequences, it is important to establish the spatial and temporal variability of spring freshets of Arctic rivers. To accomplish this objective, historic flow data from selected hydrometric stations within four major watershed basins draining to the Arctic Ocean have been analyzed to extract flow metrics of the annual spring freshet. The drainage basins studied provide the greatest freshwater contribution to the Arctic Ocean: the Mackenzie (North America), Lena (Eurasia), Yenisey (Eurasia) and Ob (Eurasia) river basins. Occurrence date of peak flows, length of freshet, volume of freshet, and nominal freshet shape have been extracted for available years of record from hydrometric stations located at the outlets of the four rivers, as well as a subset of stations gauged on tributary systems. Results show the temporal sequencing of the four outlet stations located at the Mackenzie River at Arctic Red River, Lena River at Kusur, Yenisey River at Igarka, and Ob River at Salehard, and identify the major controls of extreme high and low flow years. Specifically, links are made with climatic drivers and atmospheric circulation patterns. Special focus is placed on the Mackenzie River tributary stations located within the Climatic Redistribution of Canada's Water Resources (CROCWR) region, as part of an integrated study of which a partial objective is to determine relationships of spring freshet variability with climatic driving forces and synoptic climatological patterns.

  3. 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

  4. A High Density Ground-Level Ozone Sensor Network in the Lower Fraser Valley, BC, Canada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bart, M.; Ainslie, B.; Alavi, M.; Henshaw, G.; McKendry, I.; Reid, K.; Salmond, J. A.; Steyn, D.; Williams, D.

    2012-12-01

    Ozone can have a detrimental effect on human health, agricultural crops and the environment. To quantify these impacts, tropospheric chemistry models are often employed, which are continually increasing in complexity and resolution. In order to validate these sophisticated models and provide good quality parameterisation and initialisation data, complementary measurements are often made. However, these measurements can often be difficult to perform, expensive and time consuming to make. A low cost sensor network can overcome some of these limitations, by making spatially dense measurements for a fraction of the cost of traditional measurements. Since the mid-1980s, when reliable observations from the fixed monitoring network began, high ozone concentrations have been a health concern in the Lower Fraser Valley (LFV), BC, Canada and numerous studies have been carried out in the LFV previously [1-4]. In the summer of 2012 we embarked on a programme to advance these studies by deploying the world's first ultra-dense fully automated ozone measurement network. The network consisted of approximately 60 high quality tungsten oxide semi-conductor ozone sensors integrated with low-cost cellular telephone modems and GPS receivers, returning data to a webserver in real-time at 1 minute temporal resolution. This ultra-dense network of sensors has enabled us to perform a detailed study of ozone formation and dispersal in the LFV and associated tributary valleys. Peak ozone production areas have been mapped out, particularly in the surrounding region where ozone is not routinely monitored. This has provided a detailed understanding of small scale variability and ozone transport phenomena, with particular emphasis placed on the previously unknown role of tributary valleys to the south of the LFV, Howe Sound, and Hope. Data quality was routinely checked by co-locating sensors with the local authority, MetroVancouver, reference ozone analysers. A statistical method to check data

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. M. Surdu

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available 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 ten 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 seasons, greater biological production and diversity, are confined from the surrounding barren polar desert. The ice regimes of 11 lakes located in both polar-desert and polar-oasis environments, with surface areas between 4 and 542 km2, many of unknown bathymetry, were documented. In order to investigate the response of ice cover of lakes in the CAA to climate conditions during recent years, a 15-year time series (1997–2011 of RADARSAT-1/2 ScanSAR Wide Swath, ASAR Wide Swath and Landsat acquisitions were analysed. Results show that melt onset (MO occurred earlier for all observed lakes. With the exception of Lower Murray Lake, all lakes experienced earlier summer-ice minimum and water-clear-of-ice dates (WCI, with greater changes being observed for polar-oasis lakes (9–24 days earlier WCI dates for lakes located in polar oases and 2–20 days earlier WCI dates for polar-desert lakes. Additionally, results suggest that some lakes may be transitioning from a perennial/multiyear to a seasonal ice regime, with only a few lakes maintaining a multiyear ice cover on occasional years. Aside Lake Hazen and Murray Lakes that preserved their ice cover during the summer of 2009, no residual ice was observed on any of the other lakes from 2007 to 2011.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-05-01

    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 seasons and greater biological productivity and diversity are secluded from the surrounding barren polar desert. The ice regimes of 11 lakes located in both polar-desert and polar-oasis environments, with surface areas between 4 and 542 km2, many of unknown bathymetry, were documented. In order to investigate the response of ice cover of lakes in the CAA to climate conditions during recent years, a 15-year time series (1997-2011) of RADARSAT-1/2 ScanSAR Wide Swath, ASAR Wide Swath, and Landsat acquisitions were analyzed. Results show that melt onset occurred earlier for all observed lakes. With the exception of Lower Murray Lake, all lakes experienced earlier summer ice minimum and water-clear-of-ice (WCI) dates, with greater changes being observed for polar-oasis lakes (9-24 days earlier WCI dates for lakes located in polar oases and 2-20 days earlier WCI dates for polar-desert lakes). Additionally, results suggest that some lakes may be transitioning from a perennial/multiyear to a seasonal ice regime, with only a few lakes maintaining a multiyear ice cover on occasional years. Aside Lake Hazen and Murray Lakes, which preserved their ice cover during the summer of 2009, no residual ice was observed on any of the other lakes from 2007 to 2011.

  7. 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).

  8. THE ARCTIC: A DIALOGUE FOR DEVELOPMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yury Mazurov

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available In September 2010, Moscow hosted the International Arctic Forum “The Arctic—Territory of Dialogue.” The Arctic Forum focused its attention on elements of sustainable development in the Arctic region, i.e., ecology, economics, infrastructure, social services, security, and geopolitics. Many Russian experts and many well-known politicians and experts from leading research centers of the Arctic countries (Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, and USA, as well as by participants from France, Germany, Netherlands, and other countries attended the forum. Scholars and public figures from the European countries, representatives of the NATO, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and other institutions were also present at the conference. In his key-note speech the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Russian Geographical Society (RGS, Prime Minister of the Russian Federation, Vladimir V. Putin formulated the principles of Russian national policy in the Arctic. Russian and foreign participants supported the idea of continuing dialogue on the Arctic under the RGS’s aegis and the transformation of the Arctic Forum into a permanent platform for discussions on the most urgent issues of the region.

  9. 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.

  10. Aphid-willow interactions in a high Arctic ecosystem: responses to raised temperature and goose disturbance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillespie, Mark A K; Jónsdóttir, Ingibjörg S; Hodkinson, Ian D; Cooper, Elisabeth J

    2013-12-01

    Recently, there have been several studies using open top chambers (OTCs) or cloches to examine the response of Arctic plant communities to artificially elevated temperatures. Few, however, have investigated multitrophic systems, or the effects of both temperature and vertebrate grazing treatments on invertebrates. This study investigated trophic interactions between an herbivorous insect (Sitobion calvulum, Aphididae), a woody perennial host plant (Salix polaris) and a selective vertebrate grazer (barnacle geese, Branta leucopsis). In a factorial experiment, the responses of the insect and its host to elevated temperatures using open top chambers (OTCs) and to three levels of goose grazing pressure were assessed over two summer growing seasons (2004 and 2005). OTCs significantly enhanced the leaf phenology of Salix in both years and there was a significant OTC by goose presence interaction in 2004. Salix leaf number was unaffected by treatments in both years, but OTCs increased leaf size and mass in 2005. Salix reproduction and the phenology of flowers were unaffected by both treatments. Aphid densities were increased by OTCs but unaffected by goose presence in both years. While goose presence had little effect on aphid density or host plant phenology in this system, the OTC effects provide interesting insights into the possibility of phenological synchrony disruption. The advanced phenology of Salix effectively lengthens the growing season for the plant, but despite a close association with leaf maturity, the population dynamics of the aphid appeared to lack a similar phenological response, except for the increased population observed.

  11. 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.

  12. Assessing slope dynamics in a climate-sensitive high arctic region with Sentinel-1 dataset

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mantovani, Matteo; Pasuto, Alessandro; Soldati, Mauro; Popovic, Radmil; Berthling, Ivar

    2017-04-01

    As witnessed by an increasing number of studies, the evidence of ongoing climate change and its geomorphological effects is unquestionable. In the Svalbard archipelago, the Arctic amplification of global warming trends currently has a significant effect on permafrost temperatures and active layer thickness. Combined with altered intensity and variability of precipitation, slopes are likely to become more active in terms of both rapid and slow (creep) processes - at least as a temporary effect where the ice-rich transient layer of soils or jointed permafrost rock walls are starting to thaw. The slopes of the Kongsfjorden area aroundNy-Ålesund, NW Spitzbergen comprise a variable set of slopes systems on which to evaluate current modifications of slope sediment transfer; from low-angle fined-grained vegetated slopes to steep rock walls, talus slopes and rock glaciers. In addition, systems influenced by currently retreating glaciers and thermokarst processes are also found, in some settings interfering with the rock wall and talus slope systems. Within the framework of the SLOPES project, we provide baseline data on slope geometry from detailed terrestrial laser scanning and drone aerial image acquisition. Further, in order to document current dynamics, we employ interferometric analysis of data gathered by the new ESA mission SENTINEL. This presentation will report on data from the interferometric analysis.

  13. Bacterial communities in Arctic fjelds of Finnish Lapland are stable but highly pH-dependent.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Männistö, Minna K; Tiirola, Marja; Häggblom, Max M

    2007-02-01

    The seasonal and spatial variations of microbial communities in Arctic fjelds of Finnish Lapland were studied. Phospholipid fatty acid analysis (PLFA) and terminal restriction fragment analysis (T-RFLP) of amplified 16S rRNA genes were used to assess the effect of soil conditions and vegetation on microbial community structures along different altitudes of two fjelds, Saana and Jehkas. Terminal restriction fragments were additionally analysed from c. 160 cloned sequences and isolated bacterial strains and matched with those of soil DNA samples. T-RFLP and PLFA analyses indicated relatively similar microbial communities at various altitudes and under different vegetation of the two fjelds. However, soil pH had a major influence on microbial community composition. Members of the phylum Acidobacteria dominated especially in the low pH soils (pH 4.6-5.2), but above pH 5.5, the relative amount of terminal restriction fragments corresponding to acidobacterial clones was substantially lower. Both T-RFLP and PLFA analysis indicated stable microbial communities as the DNA and fatty acid profiles were similar in spring and late summer samples sampled over 3 years. These results indicate that differences in microbial community composition could be explained primarily by variation in the bedrock materials that cause variation in the soil pH.

  14. Continuous and discrete extreme climatic events affecting the dynamics of a high-arctic reindeer population.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Kung-Sik; Mysterud, Atle; Øritsland, Nils Are; Severinsen, Torbjørn; Stenseth, Nils Chr

    2005-10-01

    Climate at northern latitudes are currently changing both with regard to the mean and the temporal variability at any given site, increasing the frequency of extreme events such as cold and warm spells. Here we use a conceptually new modelling approach with two different dynamic terms of the climatic effects on a Svalbard reindeer population (the Brøggerhalvøya population) which underwent an extreme icing event ("locked pastures") with 80% reduction in population size during one winter (1993/94). One term captures the continuous and linear effect depending upon the Arctic Oscillation and another the discrete (rare) "event" process. The introduction of an "event" parameter describing the discrete extreme winter resulted in a more parsimonious model. Such an approach may be useful in strongly age-structured ungulate populations, with young and very old individuals being particularly prone to mortality factors during adverse conditions (resulting in a population structure that differs before and after extreme climatic events). A simulation study demonstrates that our approach is able to properly detect the ecological effects of such extreme climate events.

  15. 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 orga