Atmospheric Monitoring Network for Antropogenic Pollution in Polar Regions (ATMOPOL)

Updated 2007-03-24

The project aims at establishing a long-term Arctic-Antarctic network of monitoring stations for atmospheric monitoring of anthropogenic pollution. Based upon the long and excellent experiences with different scientific groups performing air monitoring within the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP), an expanded network will be established including all AMAP stations and all major Antarctic “year-around” research stations. As an integrated project within the “International Polar Year 2007-08” initiative, the ATMOPOL co-operation intend to • Establish a long-term coordinated international Arctic-Antarctic contaminant programme. • Develop and implement a joint sampling and monitoring strategy as an official guideline for all participating stations. • Support bi-polar international atmospheric research with high-quality data on atmospheric long-range transport of contaminants (sources, pathways and fate). • Support future risk assessment of contaminants for Polar Regions based on effects of relevant contamination levels and polar organisms Based upon the well-established experiences of circum-Arctic atmospheric contaminant monitoring in the Arctic under the AMAP umbrella, a bi-polar atmospheric contaminant network will be established and maintained. In conjunction with the polar network of atmospheric monitoring stations for air pollution, surface-based and satellite instrumentation will be utilised to provide the characterization of the Arctic atmospheric-water-ice cycle. Together with numerical weather prediction and chemical transport model calculations, simultaneous measurements of pollutants at various locations in the Arctic and Antarctic will enhance our understanding of chemical transport and distribution as well as their long-term atmospheric trends. In addition to investigating the importance of atmospheric transport of pollutants an understanding of the transference and impact of these pollutants on both terrestrial and marine environments will be sought. A secretariat and a “scientific project board” will be established. During this initial phase of the project (2006), a guideline on priority target compounds, sampling strategies, equipment and instrumentation, analytical requirements, as well as quality assurance protocols (including laboratory intercalibration exercises) will be developed and implemented. The ATMOPOL initiative aims to address highly relevant environmental change processes and, thus, will strive to answering the following scientific questions: • How does climate change influence the atmospheric long-range transport of pollutants? • Are environmental scientists able to fill the gaps in international pollution inventories and identification of possible sources for atmospheric pollution in Polar Regions? • What are the differences in transport pathways and distribution patterns of various atmospheric pollutants between Arctic and Antarctic environments? Why are there such differences? What is the final fate of atmospherically transported pollutants and how does this impact on the environment and indigenous people?In order to understand the underlying atmospheric chemistry of pollution, e.g. atmospheric mercury deposition events, routine surface measurements of UV radiation as well as campaign related measurements of UV radiation profiles will also be included.The project will establish a cooperative network on atmospheric contaminant monitoring in Polar Regions far beyond the IPY 2007/08 period and is, thus, planned as an “open-end” programme. All produced data will be available for all participating institutions for scientific purposes as basis for joint publications and reports from the ATMOPOL database to be developed.

This is not a National Implementation Plan (NIP) project
Comments and additional information:

IPY Endorsed Project

Time frame

Project time span
2007 -
Data collection
2007 -
Data processing
not specified
Data reporting
not specified

Contact information

Contact person
Roland Kallenborn
University Centre in Svalbard (UNIS) P.O. Box 156 NO-9171 Longyearbyen Norway
+47 79 02 33 00 / 33 51
+47 79 02 33 01
Other project contacts
John Burhart, USA ( Øystein Hov, Norway Anna Jones, United Kingdom Elisabeth Isakkson, Norway Hayley Hung, Canada Jon Børre Ørbæk, Norway Torunn Berg, Norway Eva Brorstrom-Lunden, Sweden Sirka Leppaenen, Finland Kristin Olafsdottir, Iceland Martin Dameris, Germany Tracy Shimmield, United Kingdom Geir W. Gabrielsen, Norway Henrik Skov, Denmark Ingela Dahllöf, Denmark

Parameters and Media

Parameter groups measured/observed/modelled
Heavy metals
Persistent organic pollutants (POPs)
Media sampled/studied/modelled


Regions studied
Atmospheric TDC
Atmospheric TDC
Atmospheric TDC
Atmospheric TDC
Atmospheric TDC
Atmospheric TDC
Stations or areas where observations are made

Locations/Coordindates Ny Ålesund research facilities including the 'Zeppelin mountain' clean air station (Svalbard, Norway) 78º 54'N, 11º 52'E University Center in Svalbard (UNIS) 78° 12’N, 15° 49’E Hornsund, Polish Research facilities at Svalbard 77° 08’N, 14° 48’ E GEO summit station, Greenland 72° 34’N, 38° 29’ W Storhofdi, Iceland 63°24’N, 20°17’W Alert, Canada 82°30' N, 62°18' E Pallas and Sodankylæ research facilities, Finland 67°58'N, 24°07'E Neumayer, Antarctic station 70°39´S, 08°15´W

Data availability

Are data archived or planned to be archived at an AMAP Thematic Data Centre?
Data centres
Atmospheric TDC
Samples/specimens archived in specimen banks?

Methods & Procedures

Not specified

Additional Information

Is this a bi- AND multi-lateral project (i.e. a project involving cooperation between different countries)?
Other institutes involved in the project

Nowegian Meteorological Institute, British Antarctic Survey, Norwegian Polar Institute, Meteorological Services Canada, Norwegian Institute for Air Research, IVL-Swedish Environmental Institute, Finnish Meteorological Institute, University of Iceland, DLR Germany, Scottish Association for Marine Sciences, Danish National Environmental Research Institute, Danish Environmental Institute (DMU)

Is this project reporting to other organizations/programmes?

International Polar Year (IPY): ATMOPOL funding status: Norway: No Canada: Partly

Other related projects


Please log in to edit this record