Himalayan Glaciers Climate Change, Water Resources, and Water ...
The Arctic in the Anthropocene Emerging Research Questions Stephanie Pfirman and Henry Huntington Committee Co-Chairs April 28, 2014 Study sponsors: DOE, NASA, NOAA, NSF, Smithsonian, USARC Photo credit: P. Spector Who are we? National Academy of Sciences (NAS) is a nonprofit organization established in 1863. We were chartered by Congress during the Lincoln Administration to provide independent advice to the Nation on science, engineering, and medicine We are not a government agency. National Academy of Engineering (NAE - est. 1964) and Institute of Medicine (IOM - est. 1970) are connected institutions, expanding our breadth and depth of expertise. (National Research Council is operating arm.) Intellectual leadership comes from volunteer experts, chosen for expertise, balance, and objectivity.
Committee reports are most well known (200+ reports each year) but also research grants, fellowships, workshops, & other uses of independent experts. 2 Committee Membership HENRY HUNTINGTON, Co-Chair The Pew Charitable Trusts STEPHANIE PFIRMAN, Co-Chair Barnard College, Columbia University CARIN ASHJIAN Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution LAURA BOURGEAU-CHAVEZ Michigan Technological University JENNIFER FRANCIS Rutgers University SVEN HAAKANSON University of Washington ROBERT HAWLEY Dartmouth College TAQULIK HEPA North Slope Borough DAVID HIK University of Alberta 3 LARRY HINZMAN
University of Alaska, Fairbanks AMANDA LYNCH Brown University A. MICHAEL MACRANDER Shell Alaska GIFFORD MILLER University of Colorado, Boulder KATE MORAN Ocean Networks Canada ELLEN MOSLEY-THOMPSON The Ohio State University SAMUEL MUKASA University of New Hampshire TOM WEINGARTNER University of Alaska, Fairbanks 1. Study Context What happens in the Arctic to ecosystems, people, and climatehas far-reaching implications for the entire planet Climate change is happening faster in the Arctic than anywhere else on Earth, causing the loss of sea ice, thawing of permafrost, and shifts in ecosystems This report connects the dots between future science opportunities and methods to
meet those challenges 4 Charge to the Committee Photo credit: M. Kennedy Summarize the rationale for continued U.S. research in the Arctic Identify key emerging scientific questions in different realms of Arctic science (both disciplinary and cross cutting) Identify the types of research infrastructure, data management, technological developments, and logistical support needed Identify needs and opportunities for improved coordination in Arctic research Explore how agency decision makers might balance their research programs and associated investments 5 Community Engagement Review of published reports and articles (including previous reports from numerous regional, national, and international agencies, organizations, and other institutions )
Online questionnaire (over 300 responses) Targeted interviews (15 researchers) Anchorage Workshop (~50 participants) Ottawa Workshop (~45 participants) 6 Photo credit: P. Spector Community Engagement 9.48% Respondent Career Stage Graduate student 34.56% 24.46% Early career Mid-career Late career 31.50%
Respondent Disciplines 7 Atmosphere/climate Biology/ecology 21.52%10.00% Cryosphere 18.18% 2.73% Oceans 12.12% 6.36%People/social science 17.27%11.82% Terrestrial/geo Paleo Other/interdisciplinary 2. Rationale for Arctic Research Examples of observed impacts of climate change in the Arctic from IPCC 2014 Category Examples Snow and Ice Rivers and Lakes Floods and Drought
Decreasing sea ice cover in summer Reduction in ice volume in glaciers Decreasing snow cover extent Widespread permafrost degradation Increased river discharge for large circumpolar rivers Increased lake water temperatures Disappearance of thermokarst lakes due to permafrost degradation in the low Arctic Terrestrial Ecosystems Increased shrub cover in the tundra Advance of Arctic tree line in latitude and altitude Changed breeding area and population size of subarctic birds Loss of snowbed ecosystems and tussock tundra Coastal Erosion and
Marine Ecosystems Increased coastal erosion Negative effects on non-migratory species Food Production and Livelihoods 8 Impact on livelihoods of indigenous peoples Increased shipping traffic across Bering Strait 3. Emerging Research Questions Existing Questions Those that have been the subject of ongoing research but remain unanswered or for other reasons deserve continued attention Emerging Questions Those that we are only now able to ask because they: Address newly recognized phenomena Build on recent results and insights Can be addressed using newly available technology or access 9 Photo credit: G. Miller Emerging Research Questions
Evolving Connected Undetermined Managed Hidden ERQ: Evolving Arctic Evolving Connected Undetermined 11 Will Arctic communities have greater or
lesser influence on their futures? Will the land be wetter or drier and what are the associated implications for surface water, energy balances, and ecosystems? How much of the variability of the Arctic system is linked to ocean circulation? What are the impacts of extreme events in the new ice-reduced system? How will primary productivity change with decreasing sea ice and snow cover? How will species distributions and associated ecosystem structure change with the evolving cryosphere? Managed Hidden Figure source: NOAA ERQ: Hidden Arctic Evolving Connected Undetermined
What surprises are hidden within and beneath the ice? What is being irretrievably lost as the Arctic changes? Why does winter matter? What can break or brake glaciers and ice sheets? Managed Hidden Image source: NASA 12 How unusual is the current Arctic warmth? What is the role of the Arctic in abrupt change? What has been the Cenozoic evolution of the Arctic Ocean
basin? ERQ: Connected Arctic Evolving Connected Undetermined How will rapid Arctic warming change the jet stream and affect weather patterns in lower latitudes? What is the potential for a trajectory of irreversible loss of Arctic land ice, and how will its impact vary regionally? How will climate change affect exchanges between the Arctic Ocean and sub-polar basins? How will Arctic change affect the longrange transport and persistence of biota? How will changing societal connections between the Arctic and the rest of the world affect Arctic communities?
14 How will decreasing populations in rural villages and increasing urbanization affect Arctic peoples and societies? Will local, regional, and international relations in the Arctic move toward cooperation or conflict? How can twenty-first century development in the Arctic occur without compromising the environment or indigenous cultures while still benefitting global and Arctic inhabitants? How can we prepare forecasts and scenarios to meet emerging management needs? What benefits and risks are presented by geoengineering and other large-scale technological interventions to prevent or reduce climate change and associated impacts in the Arctic? Managed Hidden Photo source: USCG ERQ: Undetermined Arctic Evolving
Connected Undetermined Managed Hidden Leaving room for new ideas and making it possible to identify new research directions when the need arises requires: Research to better assess new topics Long-term observations to identify changes and surprises without delay Flexibility in funding to be able to move quickly when a significant event occurs. 15 Direct Application/Basic Understanding Short-term Direct applic ation Medium-term Long-term M2: Cooperation/conflict M3: 21st century development M4: Forecasts
M5: Geoengineering E1: Community futures M1: Urbanization C1: Jet stream C5: Social connections E4: Arctic extremes H2: What is lost C2: Irreversible ice E2: Wetter or drier H3: Winter Basic understanding H4: Break or brake H6: Abrupt change E5: Primary productivity H1: Icy surprises E6: Species distribution E3: Ocean variability C4: Biota transport
H5: Unusual warmth C3: Ocean exchange H7: Cenozoic Social Science/Natural Science Short-term Social Scien ce Medium-term Long-term E1: Community futures M1: Urbanization C5: Social connections M2: Cooperation/conflict H2: What is lost E4: Arctic extremes M4: Forecasts M5: Geoengineering M3: 21st century development E2: Wetter or drier E5: Primary productivity C1: Jet stream C2: Irreversible ice H6: Abrupt change C4: Biota transport
Natural Science H1: Icy surprises E3: Ocean variability H4: Break or brake H5: Unusual warmth E6: Species distribution H3: Winter C3: Ocean exchange H7: Cenozoic Global/Regional/Local Short-term Glob al Medium-term H4: Break or brake H1: Icy surprises C1: Jet stream Long-term
C2: Irreversible ice C3: Ocean exchange H6: Abrupt change C4: Biota transport M5: Geoengineering Regional E3: Ocean variability E4: Arctic extremes C5: Social connections E2: Wetter or drier M3: 21st century development M2: Cooperation/conflict M4: Forecasts E1: Community futures H2: What is lost H7: Cenozoic E6: Species distribution M1: Urbanization Local H5: Unusual warmth
H3: Winter E5: Primary productivity 4. Meeting the Challenges Investment Strategies Human Capacity Operations Information Observations Cooperation Meeting the Challenges Maintaining and Building Operational Capacity Mobile Platforms Fixed Platforms and Systems Remote Sensing
Sensors Power and Communication Models in Prediction, Projection, and ReAnalyses Partnerships with Industry Photo credit: S. Roberts Sustaining Long-Term Observations 20 Rationale for Long-Term Observations Coordinating Long-Term Observation Efforts Meeting the Challenges Enhancing Cooperation Image source: Arctic Collaborative Environment Interagency, International, Interdisciplinary, Intersectoral, Social Media Managing and Sharing Information
Preserving the Legacy of Research through Data Preservation and Dissemination Creating a Culture of Data Preservation and Sharing Infrastructure to Ensure Data Flows from Observation to Users, Stakeholders, and Archives Data Visualization and Analysis Growing Human Capacity Training Young Scientists Community Engagement Photo credit: H. Huntington 21 Meeting the Challenges Investing in Research Comprehensive Systems and Synthesis Research Non-Steady-State Research Social Sciences and Human Capacity Stakeholder-Initiated Research International Funding Cooperation Long-Term Observations Photo source: NOAA 22
5. Building Knowledge and Solving Problems Enhance the ways in which we make use of Arctic research Foster collaboration, especially with decision-makers Manage change to the best of our abilities Study what exists, what is emerging, and what awaits us in the Arctic Photo credit: M. Kennedy 23
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