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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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
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
MOSJ (Environmental Monitoring of Svalbard and Jan Mayen) is an environmental monitoring system and part of the Government’s environmental monitoring in Norway. An important function is to provide a basis for seeing whether the political targets set for the development of the environment in the North are being attained
1. Monitor transport of oil and hazardous substances from all sources into Norwegian coastal and oceanic waters through modelling, calculations and measurements. 2. Monitor contaminant status in selected indicators (biota, sediments, water, air, acidification). 3. Collect samples for the Norwegian Environmental Sample Bank. 4. Supply data for the Norwegian Integrated Management Plans The programme is operated by Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA) on behalf of NPCA in cooperation with Norwegian Institute of Air Research (NILU), Norwegian Institute of Marine Research (IMR), The National Institute of Nutrition and Seafood Research (NIFES) and Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority (NRPA). - Locations: Norwegian marine waters (see attached map). Main gaps: New stations/indicators/parameters will be included when needed in the integrated management plans
Monitoring of the sea-level
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 mission of the North Slope Science Initiative is to improve the regulatory understanding of terrestrial, aquatic and marine ecosystems for consideration in the context of resource development activities and climate change. The vision of the North Slope Science Initiative is to identify those data and information needs management agencies and governments will need in the future to develope management scenarios using the best information and mitigation to conserve the environments of the North Slope
MRI's activities are organized into three main sections: Environment Section, Resources Section and Fisheries Advisory Section. Marine Environment Section: A large part of the sections work deals with environmental conditions (nutrients, temperature, salinity) in the sea, marine geology, and the ecology of algae, zooplankton, fish larvae, fish juveniles, and benthos. Amongst the larger projects undertaken within the Environment Section are investigations on currents using satellite monitored drifters and other modern technology, assessment of primary productivity, secondary productivity, overwintering and spring spawning of zooplankton, and studies on spawning of the most important exploited fish stocks. Marine Resources Section: Investigations are undertaken on the exploited stocks of fish, crustaceans, mollusks and marine mammals. The major part of the work involves estimating stock sizes and the total allowable catch (TAC) for each stock. Examples of some large projects within the Marine Resources Section are annual ground fish surveys covering the shelf area around Iceland and surveys for assessing inshore and deep‐water shrimp, lobster, and scallop stocks. The pelagic stocks of capelin and herring are also monitored annually in extensive research surveys using acoustic methods. Further, in recent years an extensive program concentrating on multi‐species interactions of exploited stocks in Icelandic waters has also been carried out. A designated project for improving understanding of the dynamics of the ecosystem deep north of Iceland has been conducted in recent years. The Fisheries Advisory Section: The Fisheries Advisory Section scrutinizes stock assessments and prepares the formal advice on TAC´s and sustainable fishing strategies for the government. Supporting departments: Important supporting departments are, the Electronic Department and the Fisheries Library. The Electronic Department supervises installation, testing and maintenance of research instruments. The Fisheries Library collects books and periodicals in all fields of marine sciences and publishes the MRI report series. 20 SAON: Inventory on Monitoring Networks Iceland Main gaps: Not specified Network type: ‐ Thematic observations ‐ Field stations ‐ Community based observations
The main purpose of IMO is to contribute towards increased security and efficiency in society by: • Monitoring, analyzing, interpreting, informing, giving advice and counsel, providing warnings and forecasts and where possible, predicting natural processes and natural hazards; • issuing public and aviation alerts about impending natural hazards, such as volcanic ash, extreme weather, avalanching, landslides and flooding; • conducting research on the physics of air, land and sea, specifically in the fields of hydrology, glaciology, climatology, seismology and volcanology; • maintaining high quality service and efficiency in providing information in the interest of economy, of security affairs, of sustainable usage of natural resources and with regard to other needs of the public; • ensuring the accumulation and preservation of data and knowledge regarding the long-term development of natural processes such as climate, glacier changes, crustal movements and other environmental matters that fall under IMO‘s responsibility. IMO has a long-term advisory role with the Icelandic Civil Defense and issues public alerts about impending natural hazards. The institute participates in international weather and aviation alert systems, such as London Volcanic Ash Advisory Centre (VAAC), the Icelandic Aviation Oceanic Area Control Center (OAC Reykjavík) and the European alarm system for extreme weather, Meteoalarm. Network type: Thematic observations in 6 different fields
Multidisciplinary investigations at the LTER (Long-Term Ecological Research) observatory HAUSGARTEN are carried out at a total of 21 permanent sampling sites in water depths ranging between 250 and 5,500 m. From the outset, repeated sampling in the water column and at the deep seafloor during regular expeditions in summer months was complemented by continuous year-round sampling and sensing using autonomous instruments in anchored devices (i.e., moorings and free-falling systems). The central HAUSGARTEN station at 2,500 m water depth in the eastern Fram Strait serves as an experimental area for unique biological in situ experiments at the seafloor, simulating various scenarios in changing environmental settings. Time-series studies at the HAUSGARTEN observatory, covering almost all compartments of the marine ecosystem, provide insights into processes and dynamics within an arctic marine ecosystem and act as a baseline for further investigations of ongoing changes in the Fram Strait. Long-term observations at HAUSGARTEN will significantly contribute to the global community’s efforts to understand variations in ecosystem structure and functioning on seasonal to decadal time-scales in an overall warming Arctic and will allow for improved future predictions under different climate scenarios.
The Northern Contaminants Program aims to reduce and where possible eliminate long-range contaminants from the Arctic Environment while providing Northerners with the information they need to make informed dietary choices, particularly concerning traditional/country food. To achieve these objectives the NCP conducts research and monitoring related to contaminants in the Arctic environment and people. Monitoring efforts focus on regular (annual) assessment of contaminant levels in a range of media, including air, biota and humans. Environmental research is conducted into the pathways, processes and effects of contaminants on Arctic ecosystems while human health research focuses on assessing contaminant exposure, toxicity research, epidemiological (cohort) studies, and risk-benefit assessment and communications. Main gaps: Contaminant measurements in Arctic seawater, toxicity data specific to Arctic species. Network type: - Thematical observations: Contaminants levels and relevant ancilliary parameters - Field stations: Atmospheric observing stations at Alert, Nunavut and Little Fox Lake, Yukon. - Community based observations: Numerous communities throughout the Canadian Arctic participate in sample collection - Coordination: National coordination of the program provided by the NCP secretariat, which also acts as liaison with AMAP.
In the context of the tasks SAON SG steering group, the topology of the Arctic hydrometeorological observation network can be presented in the following concise form: 1. Agrometeorological; 2. Actinometric; 3. Aerological (radiosounding); 4. Water balance; 5. Hydrological on rivers; 6. Hydrometeorological on lakes; 7. Glaciological; 8. Meteorological; 9. Marine hydrometeorological (in the coastal zone, river estuaries, open areas including marine vessel and expeditionary); 10. Avalanche; 11. Ozone measuring; 12. Heat balance; 13. Atmospheric electricity; 14. Water, soil and snow surface evaporation; 15. Chemical composition of water and air. Observation network data are operationally transferred to Roshydromet’s data telecommunication network except for those indicated in items 4, 7,12-15. The main networks in terms of the number of observation points and volume of information obtained are meteorological, marine hydrometeorological, river hydrological, aerological and actinometric ones. Meteorological observations are considered as the main type of observations. To establish a common database and control timely and complete collection and distribution of information, a catalog of meteorological bulletins is being created to be the plan of hydrometeorological information transfer from the sources to Roshydromet’s data telecommunication network to distribute among information recipients The catalog of meteorological observations is maintained by State Institution “Hydrometeorological Center” and State Institution “Main Radio-Meterological Center”. Electronic version of the catalogs of meteorological bulletins is maintained by State Institution “Main Radio-Meterological Center” and located on the Internet site http://grmc.mecom.ru. The catalog of meteorological bulletins contains the following information: − Name of Roshydromet’s subordinate Federal State Institution and observation point to input data into the automated data system; − shortened title of the hydrometeorological bulletin in proper format; − observation data coded form; − hours of observation; − data transfer check time; − number of observation points taking part in one bulletin; − lists of five-digit indices for observation points. Changes are entered into the catalogs of meteorological bulletins quarterly. WMO’s WWW is considered as the main foreign information consumer. The lists of WMO correspondent stations are given in WMO publications # 9, vol. C, part 1 (Catalog of Meteorological Observations), vol. A (Observation Stations). 2. SAON is expected to stimulate the process of improving configuration and completeness of the circumpolar region monitoring system as a potential tool for international consolidation of the opportunities available in the functioning of observation networks in order to improve national standards quality and ensure more complete compliance of the Arctic research strategies proposed to socioeconomic needs and interests of Arctic countries 3. The catalog of points and main observations is given in Table 1 (see Fig. 1). The maximum development of the Russian hydrometeorological observations in the Arctic was reached in early 1980s, when information was received from 110 stations. In subsequent years, the number of stations decreased more than twice (Fig. 2). The current level of observations is determined by the functioning of a network consisting of 49 points two of which are automatic weather stations. Three points are temporarily removed from operation. In short term, 8 automatic stations are expected to be opened; while in medium and long term, the number of manned observation points will increase up to 52-54, and the number of automatic ones – up to 20-25. For the manned network, the meteorological program includes a set of eight-hour observations of: atmosphere pressure, wind parameters, air and soil temperature, relative humidity, weather phenomena, cloud height, visual range, precipitation, while for automatic weather stations – a set of reduced 4-hour observations. The marine hydrometeorological program includes coastal observation of temperature, water salinity (density), sea-level variations, heave, ice distribution (and thickness) as well as meteorological parameters under the change of observation conditions from hourly to ten-day observations. The river hydrological program is quite similar to the marine one. It does not include observations of water density, however, they can be included for the stations having a special status, measurement of water discharge, alluvia and chemical composition of water. The programs will include hourly and ten-day observations. The aerological program will include 1-2 –hour measurements of: atmosphere pressure and wind parameters on selected isobaric surfaces. Actinometric observations include measurement of 5 components of atmosphere radiation balance in case of the full program and measurement of total radiation under a reduced program. Network type: The main networks in terms of the number of observation points and volume of information obtained are meteorological, marine hydrometeorological, river hydrological, aerological and actinometric ones.
INGV operates in the Arctic region with observational activities in Svalbard, near the area of Ny-Ålesund, where the Institute has installed three stations to monitor ionospheric scintillation, currently in operation. In Svalbard, the PEGASO (Polar Explorer for Geomagnetic And other Scientific Observations) project has performed several stratospheric balloon launches (Pathfinders) with the aim of studying the Earth's magnetic field in an area with poor coverage measurements and of studying the possible trajectories of circumpolar winds at high altitudes. At the Greenland Base of Thule, INGV in collaboration with CNR, DMI (Danish Meteorological Institute), University of Rome La Sapienza and ENEA, carries out spectrometric observations for the analysis of stratospheric chemistry and mesosphere to monitor the ozone layer. In cooperation with In addition, an upper atmosphere permanent observatory for magnetosphere and Ionosphere sounding, including Auroras, and other geophysical processes is operated in Greenland, Zackemberg station in cooperation with Danish scientists. INGV is currently involved in the coordination of two European initiatives: a) EMSO (European Multidisciplinary seafloor Observatory) a European research infrastructure of ESFRI (European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures), which counts to establish a multi-parametric permanent network in the surrounding European seas, including the Arctic area. The project began in April 2008 with the participation of 11 European countries; b) EUROANDRILL, created under the aegis of the European Science Foundation, aims to drill key areas of polar areas to study past and future climate. The project involves the involvement of 10 European and 3 extra-European countries. The Institute is also active in other projects in the Arctic, in particular actively participates in the seismic network GLISN, developed from the existing stations in and around Greenland.
OGS conducts scientific activities within the fields of Earth Sciences and Polar Science in the Arctic, primarily but not exclusively, in the sea with the vessel OGS-Explora. Current OGS activities in the Arctic include a) Pergamon, EU COST Action: European network for study and long-term monitoring of permafrost, gas hydrates and release of methane in the Arctic and climate change impacts; b) IBCAO (International Bathymetric Chart of the Arctic Ocean) to develop a digital bathymetric database to the north of 64°. OGS is the Editorial Board and provides multibeam data; c) Research activities in the frame of PNRA (Italian Antarctic and Arctic National Research Programme) through several projects devoted to paleoceanographic study of the thermohaline circulation on the Eirik Drift (Greenland and study of paleoclimate in the Barents Sea using geological and geophysical data from the International Polar Year EGLACOM cruise of OGS Explora. CORIBAR international project (IT, DE, ES, N, DK) will provided in the next 1-2 years new data for the last item, through MEBO drilling on board RV Maria S. Merian.
Within the Unit for Environment and Energy Modeling (UTMEA), the Laboratory Earth Observations and Analyses within UTMEA (UTMEA-TER) carries out long-term observations of stratospheric chemistry and mesosphere in Greenland, Thule station. Stratospheric processes (evolution in atmospheric temperature, ozone depletion) and chemistry are monitored and investigated by stratospheric lidar as well as spectrometers, in strong cooperation with INGV and DMI. Since 1990 numerous measurement campaigns have been carried out, also on the international level (EASOE, SESAME, THESEO, ESMOS/Arctic. ENEA’s Diagnostics and Metrology Laboratory (UTAPRAD-DIM) has been participating in polar campaigns since the late 1990's. In particular, it has developed the laser spectrofluorimeter CASPER (patented) and prototypes of different lidar fluorosensor: for ships, underwater remotely operated vehicles and patented miniature Unmanned Aerial Vehicles. These instruments participated in 3 oceanographic cruises (2006, 2007 and 2008) at Svalbard, on board of the "Oceania" in the context of a collaboration with the Institute of Oceanology of the Polish Academy of Sciences. Their use is also envisaged under the Italian-Canadian CLIMAT (complementary use of lidar to improve bio-optical models derived from satellite system in the St. Lawrence).
Italy’s leading national research institution, the CNR has been supporting research activity at Ny-Ålesund since 1997, when the scientific station “Dirigibile Italia” was acquired. This infrastructure supports Arctic research conducted by the national research community. In 2008, it was improved through the construction of the Amundsen-Nobile Climate Change Tower and the actikvity largely enlarged with the Climate Change Tower Integrated Project (CCT-IP - www.isac.cnr.it/~radiclim/CCTower). Scientific cooperation, particularly focused on atmospheric science including pollutants distribution and ozone studies, on oceanography and on marine biology and biodiversity was developed by CNR scientists in particular with NPI and AWI; CNR is coordinating actions (EU-GMOS project) to improve and implement the observational system related to mercury. CNR is also involved in the SIOS preparatory phase project, and in Italy it is engaged to coordinate interested Italian expertises in a common scientific plan and actively promote Italian participation to SIOS final multidisciplinary platform. In the years to come, CNR intends to promote the improvement of research activity and to reinforce international cooperation of the Italian research groups, and to provide a significant contribution to the observational system in the Arctic, following the lines recommended by SAON. Together with the improvement/development of a supersite at Ny-Ålesund and large contribution to SIOS, CNR will operate to contribute/sustain thematic networks (Polar-AOD for aerosol and GMOS for mercury leading from CNR).
1. Priority Research Theme (1) Clarification of the mechanism of the Arctic amplification. (2) The role of Arctic in the global climate change and future projection. (3) Evaluation on the influence of the Arctic Environmental Change to the weather in the Japan area and fishery. (4) Future projection of the sea ice distribution in relation to the evaluation Arctic route. 2. Basic infrastructure (1) Arctic research cruises by Japanese and foreign ships/ice breaker. (2) Cloud radar system. (3) Data archive system. 3. Establishment of “Japan Consortium for Arctic Environment Research” 4. Budget size: 650, 000, 000 Japanese Yen per year. (appox. 8 million USD per year) Network type: research programme
To provide for the collection, interpretation, and dissemination of surface water quantity data and information and services that are vital to meet a wide range of water management, engineering and environmental needs across Canada. Main gaps: The current hydrometric network is deficient in terms of understanding the regional hydrology and river regimes across Canada. The map below integrates Environment Canada’s two key frameworks: the National Drainage Area Framework with the National Terrestrial Ecological Framework to identify network deficiencies. In order to have sufficient information there needs to be at least one active hydrometric station measuring natural flow in each corresponding ecodistrict within a sub-sub drainage area. This strategy ensures that there will be sufficient information to understand the hydrological processes and the interrelationships with the landscape. This information is essential for research and enhancing our predictive capabilities and data transfer. As the map shows, areas of sufficiency are concentrated in the southern, more populated regions of the country. Network sufficiency declines to the north and northeast, with great extents of northern Canada having no coverage at all. Network type: in-situ.water level and streamflow monitoring stations
The main objective of the Arctic Avian Monitoring Network is to characterize the occurrence of birds in the Arctic to support regulatory responsibilities and conservation of birds and the biodiversity on which they depend. Temporal and spatial changes can be used to indicate changes in ecosystems that might otherwise be difficult to detect (e.g. marine areas) and can also be used to model predicted changes due to human activity. Main gaps: Large gaps both spatially and temporally. Many datasets cover short periods. Some species groups not well covered (e.g. landbirds and shorebirds) Network type: Network consists of programs divided into three species themes that combine common aspects of biology and human use: Waterfowl: e.g. ducks geese and swans • centered on aerial surveys of high density breeding areas and following non-breeding birds using satellite telemetry Seabirds: e.g. gulls, terns and auks • centered on surveys at breeding colonies and of birds at sea (either by direct observation or through the use of data loggers) Shorebirds: e.g. sandpipers, plovers and phalaropes • focused on broad-scale, stratified sampling of terrestrial areas and aerial surveys of non-marine habitats
Ice-drifting buoy observation in sea ice area of the Arctic Ocean Main gaps: not well documented…