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1. Collaboration Network on EuroArctic Environmental Radiation Protection and Research (CEEPRA)

The aim of the CEEPRA (Collaboration Network on EuroArctic Environmental Radiation Protection and Research) project is establishment of a cooperation network in the EuroArctic region, cross-border exchange of knowledge and skills, improvement of emergency preparedness capabilities and risk assessments in case of nuclear accidents in the region as well as raising awareness and knowledge in the general public and stakeholders with respect to the nature, common challenges and associated risks in the area of nuclear safety, emergency preparedness and radioactivity in the environment. The project will study the current state of radioactive contamination in terrestrial and marine ecosystems in the EuroArctic region by examining environmental samples collected from the Finnish Lapland, Finnmark and Troms in Norway, the Kola Peninsula and the Barents Sea. The results will provide updated information on the present levels, occurrence and fate of radioactive substances in the Arctic environments and food chains. Special attention will be given to collection and analyses of natural products widely used by population in Finland, Russia and Norway, such as berries, mushrooms, fish and reindeer meat. The region-specific risk assessments will be carried out through modelling and investigation of long-term effects of potential nuclear accidents in the EuroArctic region and possible impacts on the region’s indigenous population, terrestrial and marine environments, reindeer husbandry, the natural product sector, tourism and industries. Open seminars for general public and target groups will be arranged in Finland, Russia and Norway during the project implementation period to provide relevant information on radioactivity-related issues and the status in the region.

Environmental safety terrestrial ecosystem Radioactivity Contaminant transport hypothetical assessments Radionuclides levels public awareness marine ecosystem fate of radionuclides in food chains modeling

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.

Biodiversity carbon flux Climate change ecology Ice Marine benthos marine ecosystem monitoring Oceanography Plankton