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 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 Arctic Station is located on the south coast of the Disko Island in central west Greenland. It is thus facing the Disko Bay and is characterized by an arctic, marine climate. There are 3 building comprising guest facilities, staff accomodation, laboratory and library that are located in a nature sanctuary, approximately 1 km west of a small town, Qeqertarsuaq (formerly Godhavn), with ca. 1100 inhabitants. Within the town community is located all necessary service facilities, incl. several shops, bank, postoffice, church and a hospital. The station offers a 'state of the art' platform for year-round environmental research. The Arctic Station maintains a stat-of-the-art automatic weather station located in the immediate vicinity of the Arctic Station. The datalogging at Arctic Station (every half hour) comprises: air temperatur, humidity, incoming and outgoing radiation, wind speed and direction, rainfall, ground temperatures (5, 60 and 150 cm below surface) and temperature in solid rock 2 metre below surface. In addition to the above the station also maintains a freshwater, a marine and a terrestrial monitoring program. The whole moitoring program is call DiskoBasic.
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