The purpose of the Sustaining Arctic Observing Networks (SAON) is to support and strengthen the development of multinational engagement for sustained and coordinated pan-Arctic observing and data sharing systems. SAON was initiated by the Arctic Council and the International Arctic Science Committee, and was established by the 2011 Ministerial Meeting in Nuuk.
The SAON inventory builds on a survey circulated in the community at the inception of the activity. This database is continously updated and maintained, and contains projects, activities, networks and programmes related to environmental observation in the circum-polar Arctic.
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Ice sheet meltwater and sediment discharge is measured at only very few sites in Greenland. The measurements provide detailed insights into ice sheet surface melting, englacial meltwater routing, subglacial erosion, etc., and their importance increase with the lengthening of the time series. Monitoring was initiated by IGN (Copenhagen University) in 2006, and taken over by the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland in 2014. Data are available through the Programme for Monitoring of the Greenland Ice Sheet (www.PROMICE.dk).
The main objective is to quantify the annual mass loss of the Greenland ice sheet, track changes in the extent of local glaciers and ice caps, and track changes in the position of the ice-sheet margin. Network type: - Observing and modelling the ice-sheet surface-mass balance - Quantifying the mass loss caused by iceberg calving - Monitoring the change of glaciers and ice caps in Greenland - Outlook
At the Zeppelin Station on Svalbard, Stockholm University, Department of Environmental Science and Analytical Chemistry (ACES) measures trends in atmospheric carbon dioxide in background atmosphere (Table 4, #1.6, Table 5, ##3–4). In collaboration with NOAA/CMDL in Boulder, USA, air is regularly sampled in flasks for analysis of CO2, CH4, CO, 13CO2, H2, N2O, SF6, and 18O in CO2. At the top of the micrometeorological tower (102 m) at Norunda north of Uppsala, carbon dioxide and methane concentrations are also measured (Fig. 2, Table 5, #5). Other sites for CO2 measurements are the flux sites described below. Air samples are taken at 10 sites in northern Sweden for analysis of SO2, NO2, and surface-near ozone (Fig. 2, Table 4, #1.2) in the air- and precipitation chemistry network. At the Zeppelin Station on Svalbard, Stockholm University, Department of Environmental Science and Analytical Chemistry (ACES) also measures the amount and composition of aerosols in the background atmosphere. Measurements include particle concentration and size distribution, light absorption and scattering, and cloud residual properties (cloud residuals are the particles which took part in cloud droplet or ice crystal formation)
Monitoring of the sea-level
Dual purpose: Supporting geographical infrastructure in and around Greenland Monitoring changes in Greenland ice sheet as part of GNET
The GeoBasis programme collects data describing the physical and geomorphological environment in Zackenberg, North East Greenland. This includes meteorology, carbon flux and energy exchange, snow cover and permafrost, soil moisture, –chemistry and nutrient balance, hydrology, river discharge and – sediment
The objective of the station is to facilitate ecosystem research in the High Arctic. According to the framework programme of Zackenberg Ecological Research Operations (ZERO) this includes: - Basic quantitative documentation of ecosystem structure and processes; - Baseline studies of intrinsic short-term and long-term variations in ecosystem functions; - Retrospective analyses of organic and inorganic material to detect past ecosystem changes; - Experimental studies enabling predictions of ecosystem responses to Global Change. The programme is coordinated with Nuuk Ecological Research Operations (see below) within the Framework of Greenland Ecosystem Monitoring (GEM). Main gaps: Winter dynamics
To provide the data necessary for quantifying the dynamics of arctic ecosystems, i.e. at the two field sites at respectively Zackenberg (Northeast Greenland) and Nuuk (West Greenland) Main gaps: Winter dynamics
The objective is to allow comparative studies of ecosystem dynamics in relation to climate variability and change in respectively a high arctic and low arctic setting as Nuuk Basic comprises the same components as Zackenberg. According to the framework programme of Zackenberg Ecological Research Operations (ZERO) this includes: - Basic quantitative documentation of ecosystem structure and processes; - Baseline studies of intrinsic short-term and long-term variations in ecosystem functions; - Retrospective analyses of organic and inorganic material to detect past ecosystem changes; - Experimental studies enabling predictions of ecosystem responses to Global Change. The programme is coordinated with Zackenberg Ecological Research Operations (see above) within the Framework of Greenland Ecosystem Monitoring (GEM). Main gaps: Winter dynamics
The first sampling for the soil and vegetation inventory of arable land was done in 1994-1995. The program covers arable land in Sweden and is designed to describe the state of Swedish arable land and the quality of the crop in relation to soil status, cultivation measures, and means of operation. At present soil sampling is made in 2000 fixed sampling points visited every 10th year.
CircHOB is an international collaborative health information system, involved in systematic, standardized, and consistent data collection and analysis. It is population-based, and produces data for all northern regions in all circumpolar countries CircHOB’s purpose is to monitor trends and patterns in health status, health determinants, and health care, provides quantitative evidence for planning and evaluation of health programs and services. It is on-going and sustainable with periodic updates Main gaps: Data on health-related behaviours, attitudes, and practices currently available from health surveys done in various circumpolar countries and regions are not directly comparable, due to differences in the construction of variables, sampling techniques, and contextual meanings of underlying concepts. Substantial international comparative research is needed before such data can be presented. Network type: CircHOB is a flagship project of the Arctic Human Health Expert Group of the Sustainable Development Working Group of the Arctic Council, formed in 2009. CircHOB is a program within the Institute for Circumpolar Health Research Data Center [www.ichr.ca] CircHOB extracts relevant data from existing data sources managed by different groups and agencies in different countries, including: • National population registries, censuses and intercensal estimates • Vital statistics • Mortality/morbidity/health care utilization databases • National/regional health surveys • Statistical reports CircHOB does NOT involve access to individual-level health records nor do any such records cross national borders. It involves the preparation of tables of aggregate data only. Most data are available from websites of national statistical agencies, health ministries, etc. Many but not all sites are available in English and language proficiency in all circumpolar languages [eg. Russian, Finnish, Icelandic] is essential. Some data require special tabulations produced by host agencies
Distributed network (about 180 sites over Finland). Coverage over Finland mainly according to WMO recommendations including all Finnish polar regions. Some of the stations also include automatic daily snow depth observations and soil moisture monitoring instrumentation. Network type: Automatic operational weather station observations
INTERMAGNET is global network of observatories, monitoring the Earth's magnetic field
The prime objectives of IMAGE are to study auroral electrojets and moving two-dimensional current systems.
The network of observations of SR phenomena consists of 3 points: Hornsund (Svalbard), Belsk (Poland), Nagycenk (Hungary). The data from this network are used for scientific analysis.
Weather forecasting Main gaps: These observations are operational observations of METNO
NILS is a nation-wide environmental protection programme that monitors the conditions and changes in the Swedish landscape.
The programme started in 2003 and includes field inventory and aerial photo interpretation of permanent sample plots in all types of terrestrial environments.
NILS is mainly funded by the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency and an important objective is to provide information for follow-up of the Swedish national environmental objectives and the Natura 2000 network. NILS also contributes data to environmental research and international reporting.
Monitoring and forecast of the sea and atmosphere state in the coastal area, support of safety of navigation and marine activities. Main gaps: Initial data before 1977 have not been digitized.
This station is one of many international stations in Ny-Aalesund, Svalbard. Traditionally research has focussed on the ecology of barnacle geese. The research now includes monitoring of plant production, vegetation change, insect phenology, arctic terns, snowbuntings, barnacle geese, reindeer and arctic foxes. Regular guests are Dutch institutions for marine research like IMARES and NIOZ and researchers from NIOO and VU.
The main objective is to study adaptations to climate warming and understanding dynamics of animal and plant populations.
Fluvial transport, its dynamics and structure, constitute a good indicator of the condition of the natural environment in various climatic zones. Analysis of fluvial transport components allows for precise determination of the rate and directions of transformations of geosystems of any importance. In the polar zone, very sensitive to global changes, it seems expedient to identify the mechanisms and structure of fluvial transport, particularly in the conditions of the observed glacier retreat, the main alimentation source of proglacial rivers. Studies carried out in the zone revealed difficulties in determination of fluvial transport structure, particularly the actual bedload of gravel-bed rivers based on direct measurements, resulting from: short measurement series, lack of standardization of research methods and measurement equipment, and strategy of selection of study objects and sampling. The research project presented concerns determination of mechanisms of fluvial transport and sediment supply to Arctic gravel-bed river channels. The mechanisms reflect the processes of adaptation of proglacial rivers of the Arctic zone to changing environmental conditions, and indicate the dominant directions of transformations of paraglacial geosystems of various importance. For studies on Arctic geosystems, the region of the south Bellsund (SW Spitsbergen) was selected due to extensive knowledge on its hydro-meteorological and glacial-geomorphological conditions, and long-term measurement series carried out by the research station of the MCSU, among others within the framework of the international monitoring network: SEDIBUD (IAG) and Small-CATCHMENT program. For detailed studies, rivers with various hydrological regimes were selected, functioning at the forefield of the Scott and Renard Glaciers. The Scott River glacial catchment and glacier-free catchments of the Reindeer Stream and the Wydrzyca Stream (with a snow-permafrost hydrological regime) meet the selection criteria for representative test catchments analyzed for the following programs: SEDIFLUX, SEDIBUD, and POP.