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 national program of hydrological monitoring is managed by the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), which is responsible for keeping the monitoring networks representative, for giving instructions concerning observations and measurements, for collecting the results into a database and for information services concerning the water situation. Regional environment centers are responsible for the field work needed for maintaining the monitoring stations, but they also have their own regional monitoring programs and information services. The data available from SYKE for northern Finland also include a land cover classification covering the region with a spatial resolution of 25 m. Actual hydrological monitoring observations are available e.g. on snow water equivalent, snow depth, snow density, fraction of snow covered area, soil frost depth, lake and river ice, water temperature, river discharges and water levels. Fig. 4.1 shows the monitoring network for the whole region of Finland. The snow data include monthly or bimonthly observations at fixed snow courses (each course is track of 2 to 4 kilometres providing an estimate on regional snow cover characteristics separately for open and forested areas (actually for six land cover categories). Also water quality (including some optical characteristics) monitoring data are available from selected lakes of northern Finland. Network type: Hydrological in-situ monitoring
1. Snow cover (Spitsbergen) - Study of multi-year changes in snowiness near Nordenskiöld Land - Study of impact of spring-summer snow melting on superimposed (infiltration) ice formation on glacier surface - Study of mechanical and thermophysical properties of snow cover in different Spitsbergen landscapes - Study of impact of snowiness and summer melting conditions on the STL conditions under modern climate change (by the example of multi-year measurements near Barentsburg) - Study of structure and dynamics of large and multi-year snowfields as indicators of current climate change in this region. Contact person: Nikolay Osokin (firstname.lastname@example.org), Ivan Lavrentiev
The State and Evolution of Canada's Glaciers initiative provides information and data products produced by the Federal Government's National Glacier-Climate Observing System (monitoring, assessment and data portal) and related freshwater vulnerability research in western and northern Canada. The Glacier-Climate Observing System is delivered through an integrated monitoring and research collaborative comprised of Natural Resources Canada-Geological Survey of Canada (lead agency), Geomatics Canada-Canada Centre for Remote Sensing, Environment Canada-National Water Research Institute and Water Survey of Canada, Parks Canada Agency, C-CORE Polar View, and academic partners that include the universities of British Columbia, Northern British Columbia, Alberta, Calgary, Lethbridge, Saskatchewan, Regina, Toronto, Brock, Trent and Ottawa, and related academic initiatives such as the Cold Water Collaborative and those supported by the Canadian Foundation for Climate and Atmospheric Science. SECG is a contribution to the NRCan Earth Sciences Sector - Climate Change Geoscience Program. With this data research is conducted on the relationship between climate, glacier fluctuations and their impacts on freshwater systems (e.g., river flow, cold stream ecology, groundwater recharge, flow to oceans). The development of improved remote sensing tools is also a major research thrust. With the support of the Canadian Space Agency, European Space Agency, the Canadian Consortium for Lidar Environmental Applications Research (C-CLEAR), and the NASA - Wallops Flight Facility, new tools and a systematic approach are increasingly brought to bear to understand more completely and with reduced uncertainty the magnitude, causality and impacts of Canada's changing glaciers. System outputs are used to a) inform national and international climate change programs and process; b) improve knowledge regarding the nature and locations of historical, current, and potential future impacts of climate change, c) assist Canadians in understanding and adapting to climate change impacts on natural resources at a regional and national scale. The System also provides leadership and co-ordination of Canada's contribution to World Meteorological Organization’s Global Terrestrial Observing System (GTOS) and its Global Terrestrial Network for Glaciers (GTN-G), the contribution of Essential Climate Variables for GEO/GEOSS, and providing such as Official Communications to the Parties of the Convention UNFCCC. Main gaps: Regional representativeness has been improving with the re-establishment of former sites or the establishment of new sites. Contributions to thematic needs such as water resources, flow to oceans and sea-level change will require improved co-ordination with hydrometric and other monitoring entities. Which Network type: - Thematical observations: yes - Field stations: yes, 20 reference observing sites - Community based observations: some in development (Grise Fjord) - Coordination: SECG guides and co-ordinates observations conducted by partners; SECG co-ordinates reporting for Canada (e.g., GCOS-GTN-G, WGMS)
The main objective of the Arctic Marine Biodiversity Monitoring Network is to develop and implement, for priority marine ecosystems, an integrated, long-term biodiversity monitoring plan to detect changes in biodiversity temporally and spatially, and to establish links between such changes and anthropogenic drivers. Main gaps: Large gaps both spatially and temporally. Many datasets cover short periods. Network type: - Thematical observations: all trophic levels and appropriate proxy variables for biodiversity - Field stations: fixed locations on land; research ships and icebreakers of the Canadian Coast Guard; other ships of opportunity as available; moorings - Community based observations: connected to scientific projects - Coordination (e.g. not directly involved in observations, but coordinates data and use (for instance AMAP) : national coordination of the network, development of plans, data analysis, reporting
Observations of the Arctic Ocean have been made since the 1800s at varying levels of intensity. The objective is to gain a better understanding of the physical and chemical composition of Arctic waters, the circulation of the waters within the Arctic Ocean, and flows into and out of the Arctic Ocean. Physical observations are conducted on properties of the water column including ocean temperature, sea surface temperature, salinity, pH, carbon, changes in ice coverage and extent, hydrographic measurements, nutrients, etc. Surface drifters either embedded in the ice, or (lately) able to float and operate in ice infested waters, provide measurements of a limited number of surface ocean and meteorological variables. . Additional observations are obtained on ocean currents, waves and tides. Biological observations are captured within a separate inventory item titled “Arctic Marine Biodiversity Monitoring”. Recently, a focus has been on increasing understanding of the impacts of climate change on Arctic waters (e.g., increasing temperature, decreasing pH, decreasing salinity, changing ice conditions, etc.). Data is gathered by ship with in situ measurements, deployment of moorings and buoys, helicopters (e.g. for ice measurements), and satellites (e.g. sea surface temperature). Main gaps: Large geographic areas of the Arctic are not covered regularly. Network type: - Thematical observations: of all oceanographic parameters - Field stations: Research ships and ice breakers of the Canadian Coast Guard; other ships of opportunity as available; moorings and buoys - Community based observations: - Coordination: National coordination of the program provided within Fisheries and Oceans Canada, and the National Centre for Arctic Aquatic Research Excellence (NCAARE)
Station realizes optical active remote sensing using multiwavelength elastic and Raman scattering lidar. It gives a view to the atmospheric stratification and aerosol concentration. By spatial and time localization of the higher aerosol concentration evidence there is possible determination of source of aerosol origin using HYSPLIT backward trajectory model. Station is also member of AERONET (Aerosol Robotic Network) within NASA and performing observation of solar radiation for determination of atmospheric optical properties.
Monitoring and modelling of a glaciated terrestrial ecosystem and land ocean fluxes to the adjacent fjord system. Main gaps: - Basic funding for long-term monitoring - Basic funding for data and data base handling A few short gaps due to sensor failures
The aim of the programme is to obtain a snapshot of the occurrence of potentially hazardous substances in the environment, both in regions most likely to be polluted as well as in some very pristine environments. The focus is on little known , anthropogenic substances and their derivates, which are either used in high volumes or are likely to be persistent and hazardous to humans and other organisms. If substances being screened are found in significant amounts this may result in further investigations or monitoring on national level. The results from the screening can be used when analysing possible environmental effects of the selected substances, and to assess whether they pose a risk to the environment or not. The data are used as input to EU chemical eavluation processes and to the UN Stockholm convention. The screening results are valuable when data on chemicals are needed within the REACH-system in Europe. Locations: Varying, according to properties of the substances. Samples from both hot-spot and remote sites are included. Geographical coverage (countries): Norway, including Bear Island and Spitsbergen and Norwegian seas. The Nordic countries are cooperating on screening information exchange and studies, see net site and brochure: http://nordicscreening.org/ http://nordicscreening.org/index.php?module=Pagesetter&func=viewpub&tid=10&pid=1
To monitor radioactivity in the air
This is a cooperation between Institute of Marine Research (IMR) in Norway (contact person Ingolf Røttingen, email@example.com) and Polar Research Institute of Marine Fisheries and Oceanography (PINRO) in Russia. Main objective of the network: - Determine amount and distribution of commercial fish stocks - Describe abundance of biodiversity (benthos, fish, whale, zooplankton, phytoplankton, shellfish) - Determine annual variation in commercial fish biomass and feeding conditions for these fish species. Location: Southern and central Barents Sea – mainly in Norwegian sector. When operational: Area surveys are conducted throughout the year. The number of vessels in each survey differs, not only between surveys but may also change from year to year for the same survey. However, most surveys are conducted with only one vessel. It is not possible to measure all ecosystem components during each survey. Effort is always put on measuring as many species as possible on each survey, but available time put restrictions on what is possible to accomplish. Also, an investigation should not take too long time in order to give a synoptic picture of the conditions. Therefore the surveys must focus on a specific set of species. Other measured species may therefore not have optimal coverage and thereby increased uncertainty, but will still give important information. An overview of the measured species on each main survey is given in the table above. Operation: Observations are taken by IMR from research vessels. The programme is carried out in cooperation with Russia (PINRO) coordinated under the Joint Norway-Russia Fisheries Commission. Assessment of commercial stocks are conducted through ICES. Geographical coverage: Norwegian EEZ of Barents Sea including waters around Svalbard. The joint programme with Russia covers much of the Barents Sea (southern, central, and much of northern part in fall). Network type: Surveys, annual stock assessments
This is a cooperation between Institute of Marine Research (IMR) in Norway (contact person Tor Knutsen, firstname.lastname@example.org ) and Polar Research Institute of Marine Fisheries and Oceanography (PINRO) in Russia. Main objective of the network: 1. Determine amount and distribution of zooplankton biomass (in three size fractions). 2. Describe abundance of dominant zooplankton species. 3. Determine annual variation in zooplankton biomass and feeding conditions of planktonfeeding fishes. Operation: Observations are taken by IMR from research vessels. The programme is carried out in cooperation with Russia (PINRO).
This is a cooperation between Institute of Marine Research (IMR) in Norway (Contact person Randi Ingvaldsen, email@example.com) and Polar Research Institute of Marine Fisheries and Oceanography (PINRO) in Russia. Main objective of the network: 1. Describe water mass distribution and properties 2. Document ocean climate variability as part of long time series 3. Relate ocean climate variability to variation in recruitment, growth, condition and size of commercial fish stocks Observations are taken by IMR from research vessels. The programme is carried out in cooperation with Russia (PINRO) coordinated under the Joint Norway-Russia Fisheries Commission. The current meter moorings are shifted once a year.
- To document levels and trends of radioactivity in the environment - Basis for reports to international organisations (mainly OSPAR) - Inform authorities, media and the public in general about status of radioactive contamination
To assess the effects, levels and trends of hazardous substances in marine sediment and biota. The indicator organisms include blue mussel, dogwhelk, cod and plaice. The monitoring sites are mostly coastal and the frequency of sampling is mostly annually for biota and every 10-15 years for sediment. Main gaps: Protected areas and offshore monitoring are generally not included under the CEMP but offshore monitoring is somewhat covered by. IMR/NIFES programmes. Not all substances under EU’s Water Frame Work Directive and Marine Strategy Directive are monitored regularly. Biological effects monitoring is lacking except for IMPOSEX investigations.
The main objective of the RID monitoring programme is to monitor and assess the riverine and direct inputs of selected pollutants to the Norwegian part of OSPAR’s Maritime Area. The entire study area (i.e. main Norwegian land area) is divided into the following four coastal areas/sub-regions: Skagerak, North Sea, Norwegian Sea, and Barents Sea. The monitoring in rivers is carried out in 10 so-called ‘main rivers’ with monthly sampling; and 36 so-called ‘tributary rivers’ with sampling 4 times a year. The catchment areas of these 46 rivers constitute about 50% of the Norwegian area draining to the Convention waters. The inputs from the remaining areas are estimatedby the Teotil model. This includes direct discharges from wastewater treatment plants, industry and fish farming.
To detect changes in concentrations of POPs in freshwater fish due to changes in atmospheric or local anthropogenic input.
To detect changes in concentrations of metals and POPs in lake sediments
To detect changes in concentrations of chemical parameters in surface waters (rivers and lakes) related to changes in anthropogenic deposition input from longrange transboundary air pollution, in particular sulpur and nitrogen. The results are used as a basis to understand the biological responses to changes in acid deposition input.
Survey trends in deposition of long range transported heavy metals and other elements in Norway. For this purpose concentrations in mosses are measured. In year 2000 and 2005 extra samples were taken in areas with metallurgic industry to map the local level of deposition.
Within the State of Alaska, the Alaska Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) program collects and publishes cancer data as part of the National Cancer Institute’s overall SEER program, and the Alaska Native Stroke Registry is a project to increase the understanding of stroke in Alaska Natives, with the goal of improving stroke care. Circumpolar linkage of such networks would facilitate international collaboration, international standardization of data collection international comparison of comparable data, thereby greatly adding to our knowledge of Arctic health, and enhancing design of treatment and prevention.