Science.gov

Sample records for alaskan coastal tundra

  1. Spatial and Temporal Variation in Primary Productivity (NDVI) of Coastal Alaskan Tundra: Decreased Vegetation Growth Following Earlier Snowmelt

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gamon, John A.; Huemmrich, K. Fred; Stone, Robert S.; Tweedie, Craig E.

    2015-01-01

    In the Arctic, earlier snowmelt and longer growing seasons due to warming have been hypothesized to increase vegetation productivity. Using the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) from both field and satellite measurements as an indicator of vegetation phenology and productivity, we monitored spatial and temporal patterns of vegetation growth for a coastal wet sedge tundra site near Barrow, Alaska over three growing seasons (2000-2002). Contrary to expectation, earlier snowmelt did not lead to increased productivity. Instead, productivity was associated primarily with precipitation and soil moisture, and secondarily with growing degree days, which, during this period, led to reduced growth in years with earlier snowmelt. Additional moisture effects on productivity and species distribution, operating over a longer time scale, were evident in spatial NDVI patterns associated with microtopography. Lower, wetter regions dominated by graminoids were more productive than higher, drier locations having a higher percentage of lichens and mosses, despite the earlier snowmelt at the more elevated sites. These results call into question the oft-stated hypothesis that earlier arctic growing seasons will lead to greater vegetation productivity. Rather, they agree with an emerging body of evidence from recent field studies indicating that early-season, local environmental conditions, notably moisture and temperature, are primary factors determining arctic vegetation productivity. For this coastal arctic site, early growing season conditions are strongly influenced by microtopography, hydrology, and regional sea ice dynamics, and may not be easily predicted from snowmelt date or seasonal average air temperatures alone. Our comparison of field to satellite NDVI also highlights the value of in-situ monitoring of actual vegetation responses using field optical sampling to obtain detailed information on surface conditions not possible from satellite observations alone.

  2. Herbivory and soil moisture drive long-term patterns of vegetation structure and function in Alaskan coastal tundra: results from resampling historic exclosures at Barrow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, D. R.; Lara, M. J.; Shaver, G. R.; Tweedie, C.

    2010-12-01

    Herbivores can be strong drivers of vegetation structure whose effects often vary depending on such things as primary productivity, the species makeup and structure of plants and herbivores, and other factors. In the Arctic however, the strength and direction of these effects have been difficult to detect and often vary widely among tundra types. In the coastal tundra near Barrow Alaska, fluctuations of lemming populations have long intrigued researchers and exclosure treatments were established at various periods between the 1950’s (Naval Arctic Research Laboratory) and early 1970’s (International Biological Program). Approximately 25% of these exclosures and control plots remain intact and were resampled in 2002 and 2010. The plots provide one of the few opportunities to assess how arctic tundra might be structured and function in the absence of herbivores. Plant cover and abundance as well as biomass estimates indicated that herbivores have had varied effects among soil moisture regimes. While herbivore exclusion resulted in a decrease in vascular plant abundance and diversity in all communities, dryer sites became lichen dominated and wetter sites became moss dominant. Additionally between resampling dates, these patterns have intensified as control plot graminoid biomass has increased in wetter sites while deciduous shrub biomass has increased slightly in dryer site control plots. Exclusion also resulted in differences in functional characteristics as well. Generally across all moisture regimes, exclusion increased albedo and decreased active layer, NDVI (normalized difference vegetation index), and CO2 uptake. Drier sites showed little difference in CH4 efflux, while moist and wet sites showed significant decreases in CH4 efflux in the absence of herbivores. These results suggest that herbivores have a strong effect on ecosystem structure and function in this coastal tundra and effects have become more pronounced recently. Because theoretical

  3. Emissions of biogenic sulfur gases from Alaskan tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hines, Mark E.; Morrison, Michael C.

    1992-01-01

    Results of sulfur emission measurements made in freshwater and marine wetlands in Alaskan tundra during the Arctic Boundary Layer Expedition 2A (ABLE 3A) in July 1988 are presented. The data indicate that this type of tundra emits very small amounts of gaseous sulfur and, when extrapolated globally, accounts for a very small percentage of the global flux of biogenic sulfur to the atmosphere. Sulfur emissions from marine sites are up to 20-fold greater than fluxes from freshwater habitats and are dominated by dimethyl sulfide (DMS). Highest emissions, with a mean of 6.0 nmol/sq m/h, occurred in water-saturated wet meadow areas. In drier upland tundra sites, highest fluxes occurred in areas inhabited by mixed vegetation and labrador tea at 3.0 nmol/sq m/h and lowest fluxes were from lichen-dominated areas at 0.9 nmol/sq m/h. DMS was the dominant gas emitted from all these sites. Emissions of DMS were highest from intertidal soils inhabited by Carex subspathacea.

  4. Emissions of biogenic sulfur gases from Alaskan tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Hines, M.E.; Morrison, M.C.

    1992-10-30

    Fluxes of the biogenic sulfur gases carbonyl sulfide (COS), dimethyl sulfide (DMS), methyl mercaptan (MeSH), and carbon disulfide (CS{sub 2}) were determined from several freshwater and coastal marine tundra habitats using a dynamic enclosure method and gas chromatography. In the freshwater tundra sites, highest emissions, with a mean of 6.0 nmol m{sup {minus}2}h{sup {minus}1} (1.5-10) occurred in the water-saturated wet meadow areas inhabited by grasses, sedges, and Shpagnum mosses. In the drier upland tundra sites, highest fluxes occurred in areas inhabited by mixed vegetation and labrador tea at 3.0 nmol m{sup {minus}2}h{sup {minus}1} (0-8.3) and lowest fluxes were from lichen-dominated areas at 0.8 nmol m{sup {minus}2}h{sup {minus}1}. Sulfur emissions from a lake surface were also low at 0.8 nmol m{sup {minus}2}h{sup {minus}1}. Of the compounds measured, DMS was the dominant gas emitted from all of these sites. Sulfur emissions from the marine sites were up to 20-fold greater than fluxes in the freshwater habitats and were also dominated by DMS. Emissions of DMS were highest from intertidal soils inhabited by Carex subspathacea. This Carex sp. was grazed thoroughly by geese and DMS fluxes doubled when goose feces were left within the flux chamber. Emissions were much lower from other types of vegetation which were more spatially dominant. Sulfur emissions from tundra were among the lowest reported in the literature. When emission data were extrapolated to include all tundra globally, the global flux of biogenic sulfur from this biome is 2-3 x 10{sup 8} g yr{sup {minus}1}. This represents less than 0.001% of the estimated annual global flux of biogenic sulfur and <0.01% of the estimated terrestrial flux. The low emissions are attributed to the low availability of sulfate, certain hydrological characteristics of tundra, and the tendency for tundra to accumulate organic matter. 31 refs., 1 fig., 2 tabs.

  5. Emissions of biogenic sulfur gases from Alaskan tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hines, Mark E.; Morrison, Michael C.

    1992-01-01

    Fluxes of the biogenic sulfur gases carbonyl sulfide (COS), dimethyl sulfide (DMS), methyl mercaptan (MeSH), and carbon disulfide (CS2) were determined for several freshwater and coastal marine tundra habitats using a dynamic enclosure method and gas chromatography. In the freshwater tundra sites, highest emissions, with a mean of 6.0 nmol/m(sup -2)H(sup -1) (1.5-10) occurred in the water-saturated wet meadow areas inhabited by grasses, sedges, and Sphagnum mosses. In the drier upland tundra sites, highest fluxes occurred in areas inhabited by mixed vegetation and labrador tea at 3.0 nmol/m(sup -2)h(sup -1) (0-8.3) and lowest fluxes were from lichen-dominated areas at 0.9 nmol/m(sup -2)h(sup -1). Sulfur emissions from a lake surface were also low at 0.8 nmol/m(sup -2)h(sup -1). Of the compounds measured, DMS was the dominant gas emitted from all of these sites. Sulfure emissions from the marine sites were up to 20-fold greater than fluxes in the freshwater habitats and were also dominated by DMS. Emissions of DMS were highest from intertidal soils inhabited by Carex subspathacea (150-250 nmol/m(sup -2)h(sup -1)). This Carex sp. was grazed thoroughly by geese and DMS fluxes doubled when goose feces were left within the flux chamber. Emissions were much lower from other types of vegetation which were more spatially dominant. Sulfure emissions from tundra were among the lowest reported in the literature. When emission data were extrapolated to include all tundra globally, the global flux of biogenic sulfur from this biome is 2-3 x 10(exp 8) g/yr. This represents less than 0.001 percent of the estimated annual global flux (approximately 50 Tg) of biogenic sulfur and less than 0.01 percent of the estimated terrestrial flux. The low emissions are attributed to the low availability of sulfate, certain hydrological characteristics of tundra, and the tendency for tundra to accumulate organic matter.

  6. Alaska Coastal Tundra Vegetation's Links to Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bieniek, P. A.; Bhatt, U. S.; Walker, D. A.; Raynolds, M. K.; Comiso, J. C.; Epstein, H. E.; Pinzon, J. E.; Tucker, C. J.; Thoman, R. L.; Tran, H.; Molders, N.; Ermold, W.; Zhang, J.; Steele, M.

    2012-12-01

    Changes in the seasonal climate in arctic coastal regions of Alaska have been documented during the satellite record and are linked to tundra vegetation productivity. The Arctic Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) data set (a measure of vegetation photosynthetic capacity) has been used to document coherent temporal relationships between near-coastal sea ice, summer tundra land surface temperatures, and vegetation productivity throughout the Arctic. In the tundra of northern Alaska, significant increases have been documented in seasonal maximum (max) NDVI along the Beaufort and Chukchi Sea coasts. In contrast, maxNDVI over coastal tundra areas in southwest Alaska along the Bering Sea has declined. Increasing land surface temperatures have been documented in the Chukchi, Beaufort and Bering Sea tundra regions during the summer, but temperatures have declined in midsummer. NDVI variability has been previously tied with sea ice. The purpose of this study is to identify the climate system components that are linked to Alaska coastal tundra NDVI changes on seasonal and sub-seasonal time scales. Three coastal tundra domains were evaluated based on the Treshnikov divisions and they are named the East Bering, East Chukchi, and Beaufort, in reference to the adjacent seas. In the Beaufort and East Chukchi regions, the strength of the Beaufort High was correlated with NDVI, however the sign of the relationship changes from month to month in summer indicating a complex relationship. The maxNDVI is above average when the June Beaufort High (BH) is stronger, however, a weaker BH in July is also linked with increased TI-NDVI (time-integrated over the season). This suggests that a stronger BH, which suppresses cloudiness and increases solar insolation, may drive warming in June. Trends in wind speeds suggest that the changes in temperature are also linked with changes in the local sea breeze circulation, and stronger winds along the coast are correlated with warmer

  7. Quantifying the historic and future distribution of fire in Alaskan tundra ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Young, A. M.; Higuera, P. E.; Duffy, P. A.

    2012-12-01

    During the past 60 years fire has been relatively rare and small in size within tundra ecosystems. However, historical observations and paleoecological evidence indicates that fire regimes vary widely across Alaskan tundra, in both space and time. These lines of evidence suggest that fire occupies a highly specified niche or ecological space in Alaskan tundra, which may change significantly with future climate warming. The objective of this research was to quantify the relationships between fire occurrence and different seasonal climate variables, and to begin to make inferences about future distributions of fire across the tundra landscape. The results of this research will ultimately contribute to the goal of summarizing the linkages that exist among climate, vegetation, and fire in the historical record, and for making predictions concerning fire disturbance in tundra ecosystems throughout the next century. Historic tundra fires occurred non-randomly across space, and a relationship exists between fire occurrence and warm, dry climates. We quantified this relationship with generalized boosting models (GBM) using datasets of downscaled temperature and precipitation (2 km, 1971-2000), and historic records of tundra area burned (1950-2010). The GBM used six seasonal climate variables, focused on growing season temperature and precipitation, to predict the probability of fire occurrence over the 1950-2010 time period. To understand implications of these historic relationships given ongoing climate warming, we constructed future climatologies of temperature and precipitation for the five GCMs which performed best in Alaska under the IPCC AR4 A1B (middle-of-the-road) emissions scenario for the time period 2021-2050. The GBM performed well predicting the observed spatial distribution of tundra area burned, capturing key regions which experienced the most fire activity from 1950-2010. The mean temperature of the warmest month (MeanMaxTemp) was the most influential

  8. Atmospheric methane sources - Alaskan tundra bogs, an alpine fen, and a subarctic boreal marsh

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sebacher, D. I.; Harriss, R. C.; Grice, S. S.; Bartlett, K. B.; Sebacher, S. M.

    1986-01-01

    Methane (CH4) flux measurements from Alaska tundra bogs, an alpine fen, and a subarctic boreal marsh were obtained at field sites ranging from Prudhoe Bay on the coast of the Arctic Ocean to the Alaskan Range south of Fairbanks during August 1984. In the tundra, average CH4 emission rates varied from 4.9 mg CH4 per sq m per day (moist tundra) to 119 mg CH4 per sq m per day (waterlogged tundra). Fluxes averaged 40 mg CH4 per sq m per day from wet tussock meadows in the Brooks Range and 289 mg Ch4 per sq m per day from an alpine fen in the Alaskan Range. The boreal marsh had an average CH4 emission rate of 106 mg CH4 per sq m per day. Significant emissions were detected in tundra areas where peat temperatures were as low as 4 C, and permafrost was only 25 cm below the ground surface. Emission rates from the 17 sites sampled were found to be logarithmically related to water levels at the sites. Extrapolation of the data to an estimate of the total annual CH4 emission from all arctic and boreal wetlands suggests that these ecosystems are a major source of atmospheric CH4 and could account for up to 23 percent of global CH4 emissions from wetlands.

  9. Recovery of plant biomass and soil N cycling in Alaskan tundra following an unusual fire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bret-Harte, M. S.; Mack, M. C.; Huebner, D. C.; Johnston, M.; Shaver, G. R.

    2012-12-01

    Climate warming is likely to increase the frequency of disturbances in the Arctic. The Anaktuvuk River fire of 2007 burned 1039 km2 of northern Alaskan tundra; this was unprecedented for this vegetation, which is clonal, slow-growing, and long-lived. We harvested plant biomass and soils from severely and moderately burned areas and controls in 2011 to assess recovery of plant productivity and soil N cycling four years after the fire. Biomass of vascular plants had recovered to nearly control levels in moderately burned areas, due primarily to resprouting by graminoids, particularly Eriophorum vaginatum. Graminoid biomass was actually greater in moderately burned tundra than in unburned tundra. Deciduous shrub and evergreen shrub biomass in moderately burned tundra was approximately half that seen in unburned tundra, but non-vascular plant biomass was much less, so that total aboveground biomass in moderately burned tundra had not returned to control levels. Severely burned tundra had less of all components of the community than in moderately burned tundra, except that there was higher biomass of non-vascular plants, due to colonization by fire-following liverworts and mosses. Productivity of vascular plants was similar in unburned and severely burned tundra plots, and higher in moderately burned plots, due in part to higher soil N availability. Recovery of plant biomass was largely due to resprouting of species that survived the fire, though numerous seedlings were seen. Biomass of vascular plants has recovered rapidly in the moderately burned sites, while severely burned sites and nonvascular plants are recovering more slowly, but the relative abundance of different species differs from unburned tundra. The relationship between spectral indices (NDVI, EVI-2) collected at the plot level and either biomass or NPP varied with burn category, which may complicate assessments of NPP by remote sensing following fire.

  10. Fire disturbance effects on land surface albedo in Alaskan tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    French, Nancy H. F.; Whitley, Matthew A.; Jenkins, Liza K.

    2016-03-01

    The study uses satellite Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer albedo products (MCD43A3) to assess changes in albedo at two sites in the treeless tundra region of Alaska, both within the foothills region of the Brooks Range, the 2007 Anaktuvuk River Fire (ARF) and 2012 Kucher Creek Fire (KCF). Results are compared to each other and other studies to assess the magnitude of albedo change and the longevity of impact of fire on land surface albedo. In both sites there was a marked decrease of albedo in the year following the fire. In the ARF, albedo slowly increased until 4 years after the fire, when it returned to albedo values prior to the fire. For the year immediately after the fire, a threefold difference in the shortwave albedo decrease was found between the two sites. ARF showed a 45.3% decrease, while the KCF showed a 14.1% decrease in shortwave albedo, and albedo is more variable in the KCF site than ARF site 1 year after the fire. These differences are possibly the result of differences in burn severity of the two fires, wherein the ARF burned more completely with more contiguous patches of complete burn than KCF. The impact of fire on average growing season (April-September) surface shortwave forcing in the year following fire is estimated to be 13.24 ± 6.52 W m-2 at the ARF site, a forcing comparable to studies in other treeless ecosystems. Comparison to boreal studies and the implications to energy flux are discussed in the context of future increases in fire occurrence and severity in a warming climate.

  11. Greater shrub dominance alters breeding habitat and food resources for migratory songbirds in Alaskan arctic tundra.

    PubMed

    Boelman, Natalie T; Gough, Laura; Wingfield, John; Goetz, Scott; Asmus, Ashley; Chmura, Helen E; Krause, Jesse S; Perez, Jonathan H; Sweet, Shannan K; Guay, Kevin C

    2015-04-01

    Climate warming is affecting the Arctic in multiple ways, including via increased dominance of deciduous shrubs. Although many studies have focused on how this vegetation shift is altering nutrient cycling and energy balance, few have explicitly considered effects on tundra fauna, such as the millions of migratory songbirds that breed in northern regions every year. To understand how increasing deciduous shrub dominance may alter breeding songbird habitat, we quantified vegetation and arthropod community characteristics in both graminoid and shrub dominated tundra. We combined measurements of preferred nest site characteristics for Lapland longspurs (Calcarius lapponicus) and Gambel's White-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys gambelii) with modeled predictions for the distribution of plant community types in the Alaskan arctic foothills region for the year 2050. Lapland longspur nests were found in sedge-dominated tussock tundra where shrub height does not exceed 20 cm, whereas White-crowned sparrows nested only under shrubs between 20 cm and 1 m in height, with no preference for shrub species. Shrub canopies had higher canopy-dwelling arthropod availability (i.e. small flies and spiders) but lower ground-dwelling arthropod availability (i.e. large spiders and beetles). Since flies are the birds' preferred prey, increasing shrubs may result in a net enhancement in preferred prey availability. Acknowledging the coarse resolution of existing tundra vegetation models, we predict that by 2050 there will be a northward shift in current White-crowned sparrow habitat range and a 20-60% increase in their preferred habitat extent, while Lapland longspur habitat extent will be equivalently reduced. Our findings can be used to make first approximations of future habitat change for species with similar nesting requirements. However, we contend that as exemplified by this study's findings, existing tundra modeling tools cannot yet simulate the fine-scale habitat

  12. Greater shrub dominance alters breeding habitat and food resources for migratory songbirds in Alaskan arctic tundra.

    PubMed

    Boelman, Natalie T; Gough, Laura; Wingfield, John; Goetz, Scott; Asmus, Ashley; Chmura, Helen E; Krause, Jesse S; Perez, Jonathan H; Sweet, Shannan K; Guay, Kevin C

    2015-04-01

    Climate warming is affecting the Arctic in multiple ways, including via increased dominance of deciduous shrubs. Although many studies have focused on how this vegetation shift is altering nutrient cycling and energy balance, few have explicitly considered effects on tundra fauna, such as the millions of migratory songbirds that breed in northern regions every year. To understand how increasing deciduous shrub dominance may alter breeding songbird habitat, we quantified vegetation and arthropod community characteristics in both graminoid and shrub dominated tundra. We combined measurements of preferred nest site characteristics for Lapland longspurs (Calcarius lapponicus) and Gambel's White-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys gambelii) with modeled predictions for the distribution of plant community types in the Alaskan arctic foothills region for the year 2050. Lapland longspur nests were found in sedge-dominated tussock tundra where shrub height does not exceed 20 cm, whereas White-crowned sparrows nested only under shrubs between 20 cm and 1 m in height, with no preference for shrub species. Shrub canopies had higher canopy-dwelling arthropod availability (i.e. small flies and spiders) but lower ground-dwelling arthropod availability (i.e. large spiders and beetles). Since flies are the birds' preferred prey, increasing shrubs may result in a net enhancement in preferred prey availability. Acknowledging the coarse resolution of existing tundra vegetation models, we predict that by 2050 there will be a northward shift in current White-crowned sparrow habitat range and a 20-60% increase in their preferred habitat extent, while Lapland longspur habitat extent will be equivalently reduced. Our findings can be used to make first approximations of future habitat change for species with similar nesting requirements. However, we contend that as exemplified by this study's findings, existing tundra modeling tools cannot yet simulate the fine-scale habitat

  13. The footprint of Alaskan tundra fires during the past half-century: implications for surface properties and radiative forcing

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rocha, Adrian V.; Loranty, Michael M.; Higuera, Phil E.; Mack, Michelle C.; Hu, Feng Sheng; Jones, Benjamin M.; Breen, Amy L.; Rastetter, Edward B.; Goetz, Scott J.; Shaver, Gus R.

    2012-01-01

    Recent large and frequent fires above the Alaskan arctic circle have forced a reassessment of the ecological and climatological importance of fire in arctic tundra ecosystems. Here we provide a general overview of the occurrence, distribution, and ecological and climate implications of Alaskan tundra fires over the past half-century using spatially explicit climate, fire, vegetation and remote sensing datasets for Alaska. Our analyses highlight the importance of vegetation biomass and environmental conditions in regulating tundra burning, and demonstrate that most tundra ecosystems are susceptible to burn, providing the environmental conditions are right. Over the past two decades, fire perimeters above the arctic circle have increased in size and importance, especially on the North Slope, indicating that future wildfire projections should account for fire regime changes in these regions. Remote sensing data and a literature review of thaw depths indicate that tundra fires have both positive and negative implications for climatic feedbacks including a decadal increase in albedo radiative forcing immediately after a fire, a stimulation of surface greenness and a persistent long-term (>10 year) increase in thaw depth. In order to address the future impact of tundra fires on climate, a better understanding of the control of tundra fire occurrence as well as the long-term impacts on ecosystem carbon cycling will be required.

  14. Temperature and plant species control over litter decomposition in Alaskan tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Hobbie, S.E.

    1996-11-01

    This study compared effects of increased temperature and litter from different Alaskan tundra plant species on cycling of carbon and nitrogen through litter and soil in microcosms. Warming between 4{degrees} and 10{degrees}C significantly increased rates of soil and litter respiration, litter decomposition, litter nitrogen release, and soil net nitrogen mineralization. Thus, future warming will directly increase rates of carbon and nitrogen cycling through litter and soil in tundra. In addition, differences among species` litter in rates of decomposition, N release, and effects on soil net nitrogen mineralization were sometimes larger than differences between the two temperature treatments within a species. Thus, changes in plant community structure and composition associated with future warming will have important consequences for how elements cycle through litter and soil in tundra. In general, species within a growth form (graminoids, evergreen shrubs, deciduous shrubs, and mosses) were more similar in their effects on decomposition than were species belonging to different growth forms, with gramminoid litter having the fastest rate and litter of deciduous shrubs and mosses having the slowest rates. Differences in rates of litter decomposition were more related to carbon quality than to nitrogen concentration. Increased abundance of deciduous shrubs with future climate warming will promote carbon storage, because of their relatively large allocation to woody stems that decompose slowly. Changes in moss abundance will also have important consequences for future carbon and nitrogen cycling, since moss litter is extremely recalcitrant and has a low potential to immobilize nitrogen. 82 refs., 8 figs., 7 tabs.

  15. Effects of historical changes in climate on carbon storage in Alaskan arctic tundra

    SciTech Connect

    McKane, R.; Rastetter, E.; Shaver, G.; Nadelhoffer, K.; Giblin, A.; Laundre, J. ); Chapin, F.S. III )

    1994-06-01

    Surface air temperature in Arctic regions has increased since pre-industrial times, raising concerns that warmer and drier conditions have increased soil decomposition rates, thereby stimulating the release to the atmosphere of the large stores of C in arctic soils. We used a model (MBL-GEM) of ecosystem C and N dynamics to predict and analyze historical (1829 to 1990) changes in C storage in a tussock tundra ecosystem in Alaska. We calibrated the model by deriving a single parameter set that closely simulated responses to decade-long manipulations of nutrients, temperature, light, and atmospheric CO[sub 2]. Based on the combined effects of reconstructed historical changes in atmospheric CO[sub 2], mean growing-season temperature and two alternative soil moisture scenarios, the model predicts a [minus]3.0 + 2.1 percent change in ecosystem C from 1829 to 1990. These results are consistent with field evidence that historically recent changes in C storage of tussock tundra have been relatively small. However, the model also predicts that relatively large transient losses of ecosystem C(50 to 120 g m[sup [minus]2]yr[sup [minus]1]) may frequently have occurred since the late 1800s, with one of the largest simulated C losses of the 20th century occurring from 1988 to 1990 (85, 92, 61 g C m[sup [minus]2]yr[sup [minus]1], respectively). These simulated losses were at the low end of the range of losses measured in Alaskan tussock tundra from 1983 to 1990 (65 to 487 g C m[sup [minus]2]yr[sup [minus]1]), but nonetheless suggest that these recent losses may be transitory in nature.

  16. Optimizing burn severity assessments in Alaskan tussock tundra from optical imagery

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loboda, T. V.; Jenkins, L. K.; French, N. H.; Bourgeau-Chavez, L. L.

    2013-12-01

    Over the past decade Alaskan tundra has experienced an increase in fire occurrence prompting rising concerns in the scientific community. Fire occurrence in tundra ecosystems has the potential to release a large amount of organic carbon stored in the deep organic layer, modify soil moisture and respiration, and make more organic matter available for decomposition and future burning through impacts on the active depth layer. Monitoring and characterization of fire occurrence and impacts in extensive, remote, and largely inaccessible tundra regions rely on satellite observations of land surface and require robust approaches to burn severity measurements. The relatively low fire activity in tundra regions between 1950 and 2000 has resulted in overall lack of understanding of fire impacts on tundra landscapes outside the Seward Peninsula where tundra fire record is better known. Thus satellite-based mapping of burn severity is limited by the lack of quantified knowledge of fire-induced physical changes on the landscape on the one hand and the capabilities of optical remote sensing systems to capture those characteristics on the other. Here we present an analysis of satellite mapping of burn severity using multi-date Landsat imagery and two field-based measurements of burn severity - the operationally applied Composite Burn Index (CBI) and the more simplistic Burn Severity Index (BSI), also known as the Burn Severity Code Matrix. The BSI used here is a four-point scale (unburned, low, moderate, severe) assessed for the surface substrate and vegetation layers. The BSI and CBI used to compare to the remote sensing data were determined from the field data by converting the qualitative fractional assessment of burn severity within 10 x 10 m plots to a single value. Since both indices represent mostly ocular assessment of the fire-impacted surface, they can relate well to Landsat's optical sensors measurements. The analysis shows that overall satellite indices have closer

  17. Methane transport mechanisms and isotopic fractionation in emergent macrophytes of an Alaskan tundra lake

    SciTech Connect

    Chanton, J.P.; Martens, C.S.; Kelley, C.A.; Crill, P.M.; Showers, W.J. North Carolina Univ., Chapel Hill New Hampshire Univ., Durham North Carolina State Univ., Raleigh )

    1992-10-01

    The stable carbon isotopic composition of methane associated with and emitted by the two dominant emergent macrophytes abundant in the many Alaskan tundra lakes, Carex rostrata and Arctophila fulva, is determined. The carbon isotopic composition of the methane was -58.6 +/- 0.5 (n=2) for Arctophila and -66.6 +/- 2.5 (n=6) for Carex. The methane emitted by these species is depleted in C-13 by 12 per mil for Arctophila and 18 per mil for Carex relative to methane withdrawn from plant stems 1-2 cm below the waterline. The results suggest more rapid transport of (C-12)H4 relative to (C-13)H4 through plants to the atmosphere. Plant stem methane concentrations ranged from 0.2 to 4.0 percent in Arctophila, with an isotopic composition of -46.1 +/- 4.3 percent (n=8). Carex stem methane concentrations ranged from 150 to 1200 ppm, with an isotopic composition of -48.3 +/- 1.4 per mil (n=3). 60 refs.

  18. Methane transport mechanisms and isotopic fractionation in emergent macrophytes of an Alaskan tundra lake

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chanton, Jeffrey P.; Martens, Christopher S.; Kelley, Cheryl A.; Crill, Patrick M.; Showers, William J.

    1992-01-01

    The stable carbon isotopic composition of methane associated with and emitted by the two dominant emergent macrophytes abundant in the many Alaskan tundra lakes, Carex rostrata and Arctophila fulva, is determined. The carbon isotopic composition of the methane was -58.6 +/- 0.5 (n=2) for Arctophila and -66.6 +/- 2.5 (n=6) for Carex. The methane emitted by these species is depleted in C-13 by 12 per mil for Arctophila and 18 per mil for Carex relative to methane withdrawn from plant stems 1-2 cm below the waterline. The results suggest more rapid transport of (C-12)H4 relative to (C-13)H4 through plants to the atmosphere. Plant stem methane concentrations ranged from 0.2 to 4.0 percent in Arctophila, with an isotopic composition of -46.1 +/- 4.3 percent (n=8). Carex stem methane concentrations ranged from 150 to 1200 ppm, with an isotopic composition of -48.3 +/- 1.4 per mil (n=3).

  19. Biomarkers as Indicators of Respiration During Laboratory Incubations of Alaskan Arctic Tundra Permafrost Soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hutchings, J.; Schuur, E.; Bianchi, T. S.; Bracho, R. G.

    2015-12-01

    High latitude permafrost soils are estimated to store 1,330 - 1,580 Pg C, which account for ca. 40% of global soil C and nearly twice that of atmospheric C. Disproportionate heating of high latitude regions during climate warming potentially results in permafrost thaw and degradation of surficial and previously-frozen soil C. Understanding how newly-thawed soils respond to microbial degradation is essential to predicting C emissions from this region. Laboratory incubations have been a key tool in understanding potential respiration rates from high latitude soils. A recent study found that among the common soil measurements, C:N was the best predictor of C losses. Here, we analyzed Alaskan Arctic tundra soils from before and after a nearly 3-year laboratory incubation. Bulk geochemical values as well as the following biomarkers were measured: lignin, amino acids, n-alkanes, and glycerol dialkyl glycerol tetraethers (GDGT). We found that initial C:N did not predict C losses and no significant change in C:N between initial and final samples. The lignin acid to aldehyde (Ad:Al) degradation index showed the same results with a lack of C loss prediction and no significant change during the experiment. However, we did find that C:N and Ad:Al had a significant negative correlation suggesting behavior consistent with expectations. The failure to predict C losses was likely influenced by a number of factors, including the possibility that biomarkers were tracking a smaller fraction of slower cycling components of soil C. To better interpret these results, we also used a hydroxyproline-based amino acid degradation index and n-alkanes to estimate the contribution Sphagnum mosses to soil samples - known to have slower turnover times than vascular plants. Finally, we applied a GDGT soil temperature proxy to estimate the growing season soil temperatures before each incubation, as well as investigating the effects of incubation temperature on the index's temperature estimate.

  20. Paenibacillus tundrae sp. nov. and Paenibacillus xylanexedens sp. nov., Psychrotolerant, Xylan-Degrading, Bacteria from Alaskan Tundra

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Psychrotolerant, xylan-degrading, strains of bacteria were isolated from soil beneath moist non-acidic and acidic tundra in northern Alaska. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequences revealed that each strain belonged to the genus Paenibacillus. The highest levels of 16S rRNA gene sim...

  1. Plant functional types do not predict biomass responses to removal and fertilization in Alaskan tussock tundra.

    PubMed

    Bret-Harte, M Syndonia; Mack, Michelle C; Goldsmith, Gregory R; Sloan, Daniel B; Demarco, Jennie; Shaver, Gaius R; Ray, Peter M; Biesinger, Zy; Chapin, F Stuart

    2008-07-01

    Plant communities in natural ecosystems are changing and species are being lost due to anthropogenic impacts including global warming and increasing nitrogen (N) deposition. We removed dominant species, combinations of species and entire functional types from Alaskan tussock tundra, in the presence and absence of fertilization, to examine the effects of non-random species loss on plant interactions and ecosystem functioning.After 6 years, growth of remaining species had compensated for biomass loss due to removal in all treatments except the combined removal of moss, Betula nana and Ledum palustre (MBL), which removed the most biomass. Total vascular plant production returned to control levels in all removal treatments, including MBL. Inorganic soil nutrient availability, as indexed by resins, returned to control levels in all unfertilized removal treatments, except MBL.Although biomass compensation occurred, the species that provided most of the compensating biomass in any given treatment were not from the same functional type (growth form) as the removed species. This provides empirical evidence that functional types based on effect traits are not the same as functional types based on response to perturbation. Calculations based on redistributing N from the removed species to the remaining species suggested that dominant species from other functional types contributed most of the compensatory biomass.Fertilization did not increase total plant community biomass, because increases in graminoid and deciduous shrub biomass were offset by decreases in evergreen shrub, moss and lichen biomass. Fertilization greatly increased inorganic soil nutrient availability.In fertilized removal treatments, deciduous shrubs and graminoids grew more than expected based on their performance in the fertilized intact community, while evergreen shrubs, mosses and lichens all grew less than expected. Deciduous shrubs performed better than graminoids when B. nana was present, but not when

  2. An Authentic Voice in the Technocratic Wilderness: Alaskan Natives and the "Tundra Times."

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Daley, Patrick; James, Beverly

    1986-01-01

    Examines a pair of critical challenges to the cultural integrity of Alaskan Natives around 1960 as pivotal episodes in the process of native resistance to U. S. dominance. Historically evaluates the fragility of native culture in terms of the political, scientific, and economic interests expressed in the mainstream Alaskan press, particularly the…

  3. NDVI as a predictor of canopy arthropod biomass in the Alaskan arctic tundra.

    PubMed

    Sweet, Shannan K; Asmus, Ashley; Rich, Matthew E; Wingfield, John; Gough, Laura; Boelman, Natalie T

    2015-04-01

    The physical and biological responses to rapid arctic warming are proving acute, and as such, there is a need to monitor, understand, and predict ecological responses over large spatial and temporal scales. The use of the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) acquired from airborne and satellite sensors addresses this need, as it is widely used as a tool for detecting and quantifying spatial and temporal dynamics of tundra vegetation cover, productivity, and phenology. Such extensive use of the NDVI to quantify vegetation characteristics suggests that it may be similarly applied to characterizing primary and secondary consumer communities. Here, we develop empirical models to predict canopy arthropod biomass with canopy-level measurements of the NDVI both across and within distinct tundra vegetation communities over four growing seasons in the Arctic Foothills region of the Brooks Range, Alaska, USA. When canopy arthropod biomass is predicted with the NDVI across all four growing seasons, our overall model that includes all four vegetation communities explains 63% of the variance in canopy arthropod biomass, whereas our models specific to each of the four vegetation communities explain 74% (moist tussock tundra), 82% (erect shrub tundra), 84% (riparian shrub tundra), and 87% (dwarf shrub tundra) of the observed variation in canopy arthropod biomass. Our field-based study suggests that measurements of the NDVI made from air- and spaceborne sensors may be able to quantify spatial and temporal variation in canopy arthropod biomass at landscape to regional scales.

  4. Plant growth form more important than temperature in controlling CH{sub 4} flux in Alaskan tundra communities

    SciTech Connect

    Verville, J.H.; Chapin, F.S. III.; Hobbie, S.E.

    1995-09-01

    We conducted species removals, vegetation and soil transplants, and air temperature manipulations in Alaskan wet meadow and upland tussock tundra communities to determine the relative importance of vegetation type and environmental variables in controlling CH{sub 4} flux. Removal of sedges in the wet meadow community significantly decreased CH{sub 4} flux, while moss removal had no significant effects on emissions. At 15 cm depth, pore water CH{sub 4} concentrations were higher in sedge removals, relative to control plots, suggesting that sedges contribute to CH{sub 4} emissions by transporting CH{sub 4} from anaerobic soil to the atmosphere, rather than by promoting methanogenesis. In reciprocal ecosystem transplants between the wet meadow and upland tussock tundra communities, CH{sub 4} flux was higher in the wet meadow site, but was unrelated to transplant origin. Soil temperature, thaw depth, and water table depth were correlated with CH{sub 4} flux, but their relative importance on a local level varied throughout the season. Plastic greenhouses placed over the wet meadow species removal plots increased soil moisture and air and soil temperatures, but did not affect CH{sub 4} flux. These results suggest that future changes in CH{sub 4} flux in response to climatic change will be more strongly mediated by large-scale changes in soil moisture and vegetation than by direct temperature effects on CH{sub 4} emissions.

  5. Carbon and nutrient responses to fire and climate warming in Alaskan arctic tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Y.; Rastetter, E. B.; Shaver, G. R.; Rocha, A. V.; Kwiatkowski, B.; Pearce, A.; Zhuang, Q.; Mishra, U.

    2015-12-01

    Fire frequency has dramatically increased in the tundra of northern Alaska, which has major implications for the carbon budget of the region and the functioning of these ecosystems that support important wildlife species. We applied the Multiple Element Limitation (MEL) model to investigate both the short- and long-term post-fire succession of plant and soil carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus fluxes and stocks along a burn severity gradient in the 2007 Anaktuvuk River Fire scar in northern Alaska. We compared the patterns of biomass and soil carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus recoveries with different burn severities and warming intensities. Modeling results indicated that the early regrowth of post-fire tundra vegetation was limited primarily by its canopy photosynthetic potential, rather than nutrient availability. The long-term recovery of C balance from fire disturbance is mainly determined by the internal redistribution of nutrients among ecosystem components, rather than the supply of nutrients from external sources (e.g., nitrogen deposition and fixation, phosphorus weathering). Soil organic matter is the principal source of plant-available nutrients and determines the spatial variation of vegetation biomass across the North Slope of Alaska. Across the North Slope of Alaska, we examined the effects of changes in N and P cycles on tundra C budgets under climate warming. Our results indicate that the ongoing climate warming in Arctic enhances mineralization and leads to a net transfer of nutrient from soil organic matter to vegetation, thereby stimulating tundra plant growth and increased C sequestration in the tundra ecosystems.

  6. ERTS imagery applied to Alaskan coastal problems. [surface water circulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wright, F. F.; Sharma, G. D.; Burbank, D. C.; Burns, J. J.

    1974-01-01

    Along the Alaska coast, surface water circulation is relatively easy to study with ERTS imagery. Highly turbid river water, sea ice, and fluvial ice have proven to be excellent tracers of the surface waters. Sea truth studies in the Gulf of Alaska, Cook Inlet, Bristol Bay, and the Bering Strait area have established the reliability of these tracers. ERTS imagery in the MSS 4 and 5 bands is particularly useful for observing lower concentrations of suspended sediment, while MSS 6 data is best for the most concentrated plumes. Ice features are most clearly seen on MSS 7 imagery; fracture patterns and the movement of specific floes can be used to map circulation in the winter when runoff is restricted, if appropriate allowance is made for wind influence. Current patterns interpreted from satellite data are only two-dimensional, but since most biological activity and pollution are concentrated near the surface, the information developed can be of direct utility. Details of Alaska inshore circulation of importance to coastal engineering, navigation, pollution studies, and fisheries development have been clarified with satellite data. ERTS has made possible the analysis of circulation in many parts of the Alaskan coast.

  7. The modeled effects of fire on carbon balance and vegetation abundance in Alaskan tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dietze, M. C.; Davidson, C. D.; Kelly, R.; Higuera, P. E.; Hu, F.

    2012-12-01

    Arctic climate is warming at a rate disproportionately faster than the rest of the world. Changes have been observed within the tundra that are attributed to this trend, including active layer thickening, shrub land expansion, and increases in fire frequency. Whether tundra remains a global net sink of carbon could depend upon the effects of fire on vegetation, specifically concerning the speed at which vegetation reestablishes, the stimulation of growth after fire, and the changes that occur in species composition during succession. While rapid regeneration of graminoid vegetation favors the spread of this functional type in early succession, late succession appears to favor shrub vegetation at abundances greater than those observed before fire. Possible reasons for this latter observation include changes in albedo, soil insulation, and soil moisture regimes. Here we investigate the course of succession after fire disturbance within tundra ecosystems, and the mechanisms involved. A series of simulated burn experiments were conducted on the burn site left by the 2007 Anaktuvuk River fire to access the behavior of the Ecosystem Demography model v2.2 (ED2) in the simulation of fire on the tundra. The land surface sub-model within ED is modified to improve simulate permafrost through the effects of an increased soil-column depth, a peat texture class, and the effects of wind compaction and depth hoar on snow density. Parameterization is conducted through Bayesian techniques used to constrain parameter distributions based upon data from a literature survey, field measurements at Toolik Lake, Alaska, and a data assimilation over three datasets. At each step, priority was assigned to measurements that could constrain parameters that account for the greatest explained variance in model output as determined through sensitivity analysis. Following parameterization, a series of simulations were performed to gauge the suitability of the model in predicting carbon balance and

  8. Species differences in whole plant carbon balance following winter dormancy in Alaskan tundra plants

    SciTech Connect

    Bret-Harte, M.S.; Chapin, F.S. III

    1995-09-01

    We froze ramets of seven vascular plant species and a mixed community of mosses common to upland tussock tundra for several months, then measured whole-plant photosynthesis and respiration in a growth chamber under simulated spring conditions, to examine whole plant carbon metabolism following winter dormancy. In addition, respiration and photosynthesis of aboveground stems and leaves were measured in the field in a spatial gradient away from a melting snowbank, at comparable developmental stages. Species differences in early respiration were not pronounced, but large differences were seen once development of leaves began. Root development in deciduous shrubs delayed their attainment of a positive whole plant carbon balance compared to that seen in aboveground stems and leaves alone, and partially compensated for differences in photosynthetic rates between shrubs and other species. Temporal patterns of carbon metabolism during spring growth may affect competitive balance in tussock tundra and vegetation response to global change.

  9. Spectral indices for remote sensing of phytomass and deciduous shrub changes in Alaskan arctic tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kushida, K.; Hobara, S.; Tsuyuzaki, S.; Watanabe, M.; Harada, K.; Kim, Y.; Shaver, G. R.; Fukuda, M.

    2010-12-01

    The relationships between spectral indices, phytomass, and plant functional types were determined by using field observations of a moist acidic tundra (MAT) and a moist non-acidic tundra (MNT) in the Toolik Lake Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) site and a sedge-shrub tundra (SS) in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, USA. For the MAT and MNT observations, among aboveground phytomass, aboveground vascular phytomass, and vascular plant green phytomass, vascular plant green phytomass was the most sensitive to an exponential function of the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). The coefficient of determination (R2) was 0.73. Vascular plant carbon and nitrogen were estimated with exponential functions of NDVI (R2 of 0.57 and 0.53, respectively). For the MAT, MNT, and SS observations, vascular plant green phytomass was more strongly correlated with an exponential function of NDVI (ENDVI, R2 of 0.62) than any other spectral indices. On the other hand, for deciduous shrub green phytomass, the strongest correlation was with a product of an exponential function of NDVI and a spectral index (MIR - RED)/(MIR + RED) (DSSI, R2 of 0.60). Here, MIR and RED denote the bands with wavelengths 2.09-2.35 and 0.63-0.69 µm, respectively. As a result of a regression analysis, 41% of the ENDVI variance and 60% of the DSSI variance were explained by deciduous shrub green phytomass. Up to 38% of the ENDVI variance and up to 10% of the DSSI variance were explained by green phytomass of evergreen shrubs and graminoids, and phytomass of mosses/lichens. These spectral indices were applicable to evaluating tundra plant community changes.

  10. Blood lead concentrations in Alaskan tundra swans: linking breeding and wintering areas with satellite telemetry

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ely, Craig R.; Franson, Christian

    2014-01-01

    Tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus) like many waterfowl species are susceptible to lead (Pb) poisoning, and Pb-induced mortality has been reported from many areas of their wintering range. Little is known however about Pb levels throughout the annual cycle of tundra swans, especially during summer when birds are on remote northern breeding areas where they are less likely to be exposed to anthropogenic sources of Pb. Our objective was to document summer Pb levels in tundra swans throughout their breeding range in Alaska to determine if there were population-specific differences in blood Pb concentrations that might pose a threat to swans and to humans that may consume them. We measured blood Pb concentrations in tundra swans at five locations in Alaska, representing birds that winter in both the Pacific Flyway and Atlantic Flyway. We also marked swans at each location with satellite transmitters and coded neck bands, to identify staging and wintering sites and determine if winter site use correlated with summer Pb concentrations. Blood Pb levels were generally low (<0.2 μg/ml) in swans across all breeding areas. Pb levels were lower in cygnets than adults, suggesting that swans were likely exposed to Pb on wintering areas or on return migration to Alaska, rather than on the summer breeding grounds. Blood Pb levels varied significantly across the five breeding areas, with highest concentrations in birds on the North Slope of Alaska (wintering in the Atlantic Flyway), and lowest in birds from the lower Alaska Peninsula that rarely migrate south for winter.

  11. Blood lead concentrations in Alaskan tundra swans: linking breeding and wintering areas with satellite telemetry.

    PubMed

    Ely, Craig R; Franson, J Christian

    2014-04-01

    Tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus) like many waterfowl species are susceptible to lead (Pb) poisoning, and Pb-induced mortality has been reported from many areas of their wintering range. Little is known however about Pb levels throughout the annual cycle of tundra swans, especially during summer when birds are on remote northern breeding areas where they are less likely to be exposed to anthropogenic sources of Pb. Our objective was to document summer Pb levels in tundra swans throughout their breeding range in Alaska to determine if there were population-specific differences in blood Pb concentrations that might pose a threat to swans and to humans that may consume them. We measured blood Pb concentrations in tundra swans at five locations in Alaska, representing birds that winter in both the Pacific Flyway and Atlantic Flyway. We also marked swans at each location with satellite transmitters and coded neck bands, to identify staging and wintering sites and determine if winter site use correlated with summer Pb concentrations. Blood Pb levels were generally low (<0.2 μg/ml) in swans across all breeding areas. Pb levels were lower in cygnets than adults, suggesting that swans were likely exposed to Pb on wintering areas or on return migration to Alaska, rather than on the summer breeding grounds. Blood Pb levels varied significantly across the five breeding areas, with highest concentrations in birds on the North Slope of Alaska (wintering in the Atlantic Flyway), and lowest in birds from the lower Alaska Peninsula that rarely migrate south for winter.

  12. Summertime surface O3 behavior and deposition to tundra in the Alaskan Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Dam, Brie; Helmig, Detlev; Doskey, Paul V.; Oltmans, Samuel J.

    2016-07-01

    Atmospheric turbulence quantities, boundary layer ozone (O3) levels, and O3 deposition to the tundra surface were investigated at Toolik Lake, AK, during the 2011 summer season. Beginning immediately after snowmelt, a diurnal cycle of O3 in the atmospheric surface layer developed with daytime O3 maxima, and minima during low-light hours, resulting in a mean amplitude of 13 ppbv. This diurnal O3 cycle is far larger than observed at other high Arctic locations during the snow-free season. During the snow-free months of June, July, and August, O3 deposition velocities were ˜3 to 5 times faster than during May, when snow covered the ground most of the month. The overall mean O3 deposition velocity between June and August was 0.10 cm s-1. The month of June had the highest diurnal variation, with a median O3 deposition velocity of 0.2 cm s-1 during the daytime and 0.08 cm s-1 during low-light conditions. These values are slightly lower than previously reported summertime deposition velocities in northern latitudes over tundra or fen. O3 loss during low-light periods was attributed to a combination of surface deposition to the tundra and stable boundary layer conditions. We also hypothesize that emissions of reactive biogenic volatile organic compounds into the shallow boundary layer may contribute to nighttime O3 loss.

  13. Effects of increased nutrients and warming on CO{sub 2} exchanges in Alaskan wet sedge tundras: Mechanism of response

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, L.C.; Shaver, G.R.; Cades, D.C.

    1995-06-01

    We measured ecosystem- and leaf-level CO{sub 2} exchanges in Alaskan wet sedge tundra that had been warmed or fertilized for 6 years. Gross ecosystem photosynthesis (GEP), both diurnally and seasonally, was nearly double in N+P fertilizer additions. With N+P additions, GEP greatly exceeded ecosystem respiration, thereby increasing ecosystem C storage. Warming for 6 years (in a field greenhouse) had little effect on GEP, ecosystem respiration, or ecosystem C storage compared to controls.(Controls stored {approximately}90 gC m{sup -2} season{sup -1}.) In the N+P additions, higher canopy photosynthetic rates (P{sub max}) under saturating light conditions accounted for the higher GEP; under low light, GEP was similar among treatments. The increased canopy P{sub max} with N+P additions was due more to increased leaf mass than to increased photosynthesis per unit leaf area. Ecosystem respiration (plant plus microbial) strongly increased in response to greater nutrient availability. This increase was due to a stimulation of plant respiration (mostly aboveground) because the microbial component of the gaseous CO{sub 2} flux was small and unresponsive to treatments. In summary, ecosystem response to increased nutrients appears to be primarily dominated by aboveground plant response.

  14. Studies of the Northern Alaskan Coastal System: Ongoing project work and synthesis activities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Douglas, T. A.; Sturm, M.; Ashjian, C. J.; Jorgensen, T.; Oechel, W. C.; Ping, C.; Rhew, R. C.; Stieglitz, M.

    2006-12-01

    Six ongoing projects focus on a better understanding of processes occurring along the Arctic Alaskan Coast. These projects, grouped as "Studies of the Northern Alaskan Coastal System", or SNACS, combine field, laboratory, modeling and human dimensions research. They include: 1) an investigation of climate variability, ocean processes, sea ice, bowhead whales, and Inupiat subsistence whaling, 2) research on the impact of variability within the ocean and atmosphere on terrestrial fluxes of carbon dioxide, dissolved organic matter and energy, 3) an inventory and description of soil organic carbon fluxes and ground ice in the coastal environment, 4) a determination of whether arctic coastal terrestrial ecosystems are significant sources or sinks of atmospheric methyl halides, chloroform and methane, 5) development of generalized discharge- constituent relationships for arctic basins, and 6) an investigation of the processes controlling mercury deposition to the coastal system. Three broad themes unite the projects: 1) nutrient fluxes from rivers and shoreline erosion in the Arctic coastal zone, 2) impacts of cryospheric changes on the Alaskan Arctic Coast, and 3) potential rapid regime shifts controlled by atmospheric and meteorological processes that could affect the Alaskan Arctic Coast. Warming of the Arctic, particularly its impact on sea ice and nutrient transport in arctic rivers is already affecting fundamental coastal system processes. The six SNACS projects are helping to understand how these impacts will evolve and what their ramifications will be both within and outside of the Arctic.

  15. Impact of Climate and Fires on Abrupt Permafrost Thaw in Alaskan Tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chipman, M. L.; Reents, C.; Greenberg, J. A.; Hu, F.

    2015-12-01

    Thermo-erosion from abrupt permafrost thaw is a key pulse disturbance in the Arctic that may impact the global carbon cycle. Abrupt thaw can occur when the permafrost active layer expands in response to climate warming and/or increased wildfire activity. Understanding these drivers of thermo-erosion is necessary to anticipate feedbacks in the Arctic, where summer temperature and fire frequency are predicted to increase. We examine modern and late-Holocene thermo-erosion in high-fire (Noatak) and low-fire (North Slope) tundra ecoregions of Alaska using a combination of remote-sensing and paleo-records. Lakes with active thaw features were identified through Landsat-7 image classification and time-series analysis based on observed 0.52-0.60 μm reflectance peaks following slump formation. We identified 1067 and 1705 lakes with active features between CE 2000-2012 in the Noatak and North Slope ecoregions, respectively. The density of features was higher in the highly flammable Noatak (0.04 versus 0.01 features km-2, respectively), suggesting that warmer climate and/or fires likely promote high thermo-erosional activity at present. To assess modern signals of thermo-erosion and identify past events, we analyzed soil profiles and lake-sediment cores from both ecoregions using X-ray fluorescence. The ratios of Ca:K and Ca:Sr increased with depth in permafrost soils, were higher in soils from younger versus older slump surfaces, and were significantly correlated with the ratio of carbonate to feldspar and clay minerals in lake sediments (r=0.96 and 0.93, P<0.0001, n=15). We interpret past increases in Ca:K, Ca:Sr, and δ13C as enhanced weathering of carbonate-rich permafrost soils associated with thermo-erosion. At the North Slope site, we identified ten episodes of thermoerosion over the past 6000 years and found strong correspondence to summer temperature trends. Events were more frequent at the Noatak site, where 15 thermo-erosional episodes and 26 fires occurred over

  16. Alder Expansion as a Coastal Warming Signal - Linking Coastal Alaskan Carbon to Vegetation Change with Climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peteet, D. M.; Nichols, J. E.; Moy, C. M.; McGeachy, A.

    2014-12-01

    Corser Bog (60.5296364oN, 145.453858oW), 21 km east of Cordova, AK is a sphagnum-dominated peatland 42 m asl. adjacent to Sheridan Glacier and the Copper River Delta. Deglaciation at 11.5 ka began with shallow pond deposition, reflecting regional warmth with the pioneers Alnus crispa subsp. sinuata, Salix, and ferns colonizing the fresh, mineral soils on the landscape. Continued early Holocene warming/melting of glaciers led to the foundation species Alnus dominance and peatland formation, surrounded by shrubs such as Rubus spectabilis, Sambucus racemosa, and wetland species such as Myrica gale and Potentilla palustris. As Sphagnum peat accumulated, the highest rates of carbon accumulation for a few centuries are represented at 50 g/m2/a, similar to short-term very high rates in the early Holocene throughout the circumboreal region but varying within the early Holocene due to development of local wet, bryophytic environments. A shift to sedge peat regionally along the South-Central Alaskan coast 7.6 - 3.7 ka is paralleled by a more evaporative, drier climate with Rhododendron groenlandicum presence, lower carbon accumulation (13 g/m2/a), and minimal macrofossil preservation, which is paralleled regionally in coastal muskegs both to the northwest and southeast and by a hiatus in a nearby lake record. A cooler, moister climate is evident in Corser Bog with the shift to Sphagnum peat at 3.7 ka, regional shifts from sedge to Sphagnum peat throughout the entire coastline from Yakutat to Girdwood, AK and the demonstration of glacial advances in the region. Alnus pollen markedly increases to 60% in the uppermost sample, indicative of a major signal for glacial recession in this region.

  17. Long-term experimental warming alters community composition of ascomycetes in Alaskan moist and dry arctic tundra.

    PubMed

    Semenova, Tatiana A; Morgado, Luis N; Welker, Jeffrey M; Walker, Marilyn D; Smets, Erik; Geml, József

    2015-01-01

    Arctic tundra regions have been responding to global warming with visible changes in plant community composition, including expansion of shrubs and declines in lichens and bryophytes. Even though it is well known that the majority of arctic plants are associated with their symbiotic fungi, how fungal community composition will be different with climate warming remains largely unknown. In this study, we addressed the effects of long-term (18 years) experimental warming on the community composition and taxonomic richness of soil ascomycetes in dry and moist tundra types. Using deep Ion Torrent sequencing, we quantified how OTU assemblage and richness of different orders of Ascomycota changed in response to summer warming. Experimental warming significantly altered ascomycete communities with stronger responses observed in the moist tundra compared with dry tundra. The proportion of several lichenized and moss-associated fungi decreased with warming, while the proportion of several plant and insect pathogens and saprotrophic species was higher in the warming treatment. The observed alterations in both taxonomic and ecological groups of ascomycetes are discussed in relation to previously reported warming-induced shifts in arctic plant communities, including decline in lichens and bryophytes and increase in coverage and biomass of shrubs.

  18. Ecology of tundra ponds of the Arctic Coastal Plain: a community profile

    SciTech Connect

    Hobbie, J.E.

    1984-06-01

    The Arctic Coastal Plain is a flat or gently rolling area of tundra which covers the entire coastal region of northern Alaska. This profile synthesizes data on the ecology of the thousands of small shallow ponds that form an important wetland community on the tundra. These polygonal ponds are formed by the freezing, thawing, and cracking of the perma-frost. Nutrient concentrations and rates of supply to the water column are controlled by interactions with the iron-rich peat sediments. Iron concentrations control phosphorus concentrations and these in turn control the growth of algae. Two fringing emergent vascular plants, Carex and Arctophila, are often the most important primary producers in the ponds. Most algae and higher plant biomass is decomposed by microbes in a detrital food web concentrated in the pond sediments. Chironomid larvae, oligochaete worms and other insects are the dominant benthic animals. Because the ponds freeze to the bottom each winter they contain no fish; however, the community is important for many species of migratory waterfowl and shorebirds that use the ponds for feeding and breeding. Activities associated with oil production, including spills, roads, and off-road vehicles, are the major issues facing managers of this wetland community. 63 references.

  19. Cesium-137 inventories in Alaskan Tundra, lake and marine sediments: An indicator of recent organic material transport?

    SciTech Connect

    Grebmeier, J.M.; Cooper, L.W. |; Larsen, I.L.; Solis, C.; Olsen, C.R.

    1993-06-01

    Tundra sampling was accomplished in 1989--1990 at Imnavait Creek, Alaska (68{degree}37` N, 149{degree}17` W). Inventories of {sup 137}Cs (102--162 mBq/cm{sup 2}) are close to expectations, based upon measured atmospheric deposition for this latitude. Accumulated inventories of {sup 137}Cs in tundra decrease by up to 50% along a transect to Prudhoe Bay (70{degree}13` N, 148{degree}30` W). Atmospheric deposition of {sup 137}Cs decreased with latitude in the Arctic, but declines in deposition would have been relatively small over this distance (200 km). This suggests a recent loss of {sup 137}Cs and possibly associated organic matter from tundra over the northern portions of the transect between Imnavait Creek and Prudhoe Bay. Sediments from Toolik Lake (68{degree}38` N, 149{degree}38` W) showed widely varying {sup 137}Cs inventories, from a low of 22 mBq/cm{sup 2} away from the lake inlet, to a high between 140 to >200 mBq/cm{sup 2} near the main stream inflow. This was indicative of recent accumulation of cesium and possibly organic material associated with it in arctic lakes, although additional sampling is needed.

  20. The influence of the Alaskan Gyre on the coastal circulation in the Gulf of Alaska

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Heim, Paul K., II; Johnson, Mark A.; O'Brien, James J.

    1992-01-01

    The circulation of the northeast Pacific Ocean and the Gulf of Alaska is simulated by means of a reduced-gravity wind-driven model to study seasonal and interannual flow variability. The circulation in the NE Pacific is discussed emphasizing its ramifications for the physical domain, equations, and boundary conditions of the numerical model. The pseudostress fields used to drive the model are based on 20 years of data from the Comprehensive Ocean-Atmosphere Data Set and are analyzed with empirical orthogonal function analysis. The monthly stresses from 1986-89 are used to drive the model, and regional oceanographic features are reproduced including the Alaskan Gyre, Coastal Current, the Sitka eddy, and a severe cyclonic eddy. Comparisons with experimental data show that the high-resolution baroclinic model is valid and demonstrates the applicability of reduced-gravity models.

  1. Plant carbon-nutrient interactions control CO{sub 2} exchange in Alaskan wet sedge tundra ecosystems

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, L.C.; Shaver, G.R.; Cades, D.H.; Rastetter, E.; Nadelhoffer, K.; Giblin, A.; Laundre, J.; Stanley, A.

    2000-02-01

    The authors explored the long-term (8-yr) effects of separate field manipulations of temperature and nutrient availability on carbon balance in wet sedge tundra near the Arctic Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) site at Toolik Lake, Alaska. Their goals were (1) to assess the relative importance of chronic warming (with field greenhouses) and increased N and P availability (by fertilization) in controlling gross ecosystem photosynthesis, ecosystem respiration, and ultimately ecosystem C balance; and (2) to attempt to partition ecosystem responses to these treatments between plant and soil contributions. The authors present results of the effects of these manipulations on whole-system CO{sub 2} exchange over seasonal and duel cycles, and on nonrhizosphere soil microbial respiration using in situ soil incubations.

  2. InSAR detects possible thaw settlement in the Alaskan Arctic Coastal Plain

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rykhus, R.P.; Lu, Zhiming

    2008-01-01

    Satellite interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR) has proven to be an effective tool for monitoring surface deformation from volcanoes, earthquakes, landslides, and groundwater withdrawal. This paper seeks to expand the list of applications of InSAR data to include monitoring subsidence possibly associated with thaw settlement over the Alaskan Arctic Coastal Plain. To test our hypothesis that InSAR data are sufficiently sensitive to detect subsidence associated with thaw settlement, we acquired all Japanese Earth Resources Satellite-1 (JERS-1) L-band data available for the summers of 1996, 1997, and 1998 over two sites on the Alaska North Slope. The least amount of subsidence for both study sites was detected in the interferograms covering the summer of 1996 (2-3 cm), interferograms from 1997 and 1998 revealed that about 3 cm of subsidence occurred at the northern Cache One Lake site, and about 5 cm of subsidence was detected at the southern Kaparuk River site. These preliminary results illustrate the capacity of the L-band (24 cm) wavelength JERS-1 radar data to penetrate the short Arctic vegetation to monitor subsidence possibly associated with thaw settlement of the active layer and (or) other hydrologic changes over relatively large areas. ?? 2008 CASI.

  3. Mercury deposition in the snow pack of the arctic Alaskan coastal system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sturm, M.; Blum, J. D.; Douglas, T. A.; Simpson, W.; Perovich, D. K.; Keeler, G.

    2006-12-01

    Extensive measurements of mercury (Hg), bromine, and ions in the snow pack on both the sea ice and tundra near Barrow, Alaska, show complex spatial and temporal patterns. Based on a comprehensive series of measurements made during the three winters between 2004 and 2006, elevated levels of Hg (50 to 500 ppt) were most often found when sampling diamond dust, surface hoar, frost flowers, or rime, all crystals grown from the vapor phase of water. Due to both the polar light cycle and near-surface re-emission processes, snow pack loading of Hg typically diminished rapidly with depth. Basal snow layers typically had levels less than 5 ppt, with most of the Hg concentrated in the top 10 cm. Similar snow pack loading was observed for snow on land and sea ice though with increasing distance inland (>100 km) the levels fell off. Observed levels were found to loosely correlate with mercury depletion events (MDEs). Hg loading remained elevated into the snow melt period. At the peak of snow melt run-off, Hg concentrations remained in excess of 10 ppt. Soil cores indicate increasing Hg loading with time, indicating that the run-off loading is due to winter deposition of Hg in the snow. We hypothesize that the bulk of the Hg loading in the coastal region occurs during winter. The deposition rate may be highly sensitive to sea ice conditions which are known to be changing as the climate warms.

  4. The contribution of Alaskan, Siberian, and Canadian coastal polynas to the cold halocline layer of the Arctic Ocean

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cavalieri, Donald J.; Martin, Seelye

    1994-01-01

    Numerous Arctic Ocean circulation and geochemical studies suggest that ice growth in polynyas over the Alaskan, Siberian, and Canadian continental shelves is a source of cold, saline water which contributes to the maintenance of the Arctic Ocean halocline. The purpose of this study is to estimate for the 1978-1987 winters the contributions of Arctic coastal polynyas to the cold halocline layer of the Arctic Ocean. The study uses a combination of satellite, oceanographic, and weather data to calculate the brine fluxes from the polynyas; then an oceanic box model is used to calculate their contributions to the cold halocline layer of the Arctic Ocean. This study complements and corrects a previous study of dense water production by coastal polynyas in the Barents, Kara, and Laptev Seas.

  5. Thermal regime of shallow water bodies in the coastal tundra zone of the Hudson Bay Lowlands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duguay, C. R.; Soliman, A. S.; Macrae, M. L.

    2011-12-01

    Many shallow lakes and ponds of the Arctic/sub-Arctic contain thick, organic-rich sediments, which have the potential to release significant amounts of CO2 or CH4 to the atmosphere if sediment decomposition rates increase in response to warmer temperatures caused by global warming. This may be exacerbated by a deepening of the seasonal sediment thaw depth in small water bodies that are underlain by permafrost. An important step in linking climatic conditions to rates of organic matter decomposition and gas production from shallow water bodies is an improved understanding of the thermal properties of lake sediments and how sediment temperatures fluctuate in response to changing air temperatures. This knowledge is also important if the ratio of terrestrial to aquatic landscape units in cold regions changes under a warmer climate. One approach that has been used in terrestrial permafrost environments is the examination of how mean annual permafrost surface temperature deviates from mean annual 2-m screen height air temperature (MAAT). The offset between MAAT and the mean annual sediment surface temperature (MASST) has been found to be much larger in deep aquatic systems (greater than 10 m) than in terrestrial permafrost systems due to the presence of the water column that can efficiently transfer heat through mixing. However, the efficiency of heat transfer in shallow water bodies is expected to larger in summer (thawed) than in winter (frozen) conditions, when thermal energy must move by conduction alone. The present study examined the efficiency of sediment heat transfer in shallow water bodies (less than 3 m) during summer and winter periods. Air, sediment and water temperatures of three shallow water bodies in the coastal tundra zone of the Hudson Bay Lowlands near Churchill, Manitoba, Canada were monitored (December 2009-August 2011). Arrays of thermistors and heat pulse probes were placed at 10 cm increments between 20 cm above the water/sediment interface and

  6. Nesting ecology of tundra swans on the coastal Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Babcock, C.A.; Fowler, A.C.; Ely, C.R.

    2002-01-01

    Nesting ecology of Tundra Swans (Cygnus columbianus columbianus) was studies the Kashunuk River near Old Chevak (61A?26a??N, 165A?27a??W), on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta of western Alaska from 1988-2000. Annual variation in snow-melt chronology, nesting phenology, nesting density, clutch size and nest success was examined. The same area (approximately 23 kmA?) was searched each year and nests were found as early as possible in the laying period. Laying initiation dates ranged from 1-27 May and hatch dates from 12 June a?? 4 July among pairs and years of study. The peak arrival of Tundra Swans and the phenology of nest initiation and hatch were highly correlated with the progression of ice and snow melt in spring. Nest density averaged 0.71 kmA? and 89% of nesting pairs hatched at least one egg. Incubation period ranged from 26 to 33 days with a median of 30 days. Clutch size varied significantly among years, driven by a low mean value of 3.4 eggs in 1999. Clutch sizes were generally larger than found in previous investigations on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, and nearly one egg larger than reported for clutches from Alaskaa??s North Slope (=70A?N). There was no indication of reduced clutch size in years of late spring snow melt, although nesting density tended to be lower.

  7. Effect of thaw depth on fluxes of CO₂ and CH₄ in manipulated Arctic coastal tundra of Barrow, Alaska.

    PubMed

    Kim, Yongwon

    2015-02-01

    Changes in CO₂ and CH₄ emissions represent one of the most significant consequences of drastic climate change in the Arctic, by way of thawing permafrost, a deepened active layer, and decline of thermokarst lakes in the Arctic. This study conducted flux-measurements of CO₂ and CH₄, as well as environmental factors such as temperature, moisture, and thaw depth, as part of a water table manipulation experiment in the Arctic coastal plain tundra of Barrow, Alaska during autumn. The manipulation treatment consisted of draining, controlling, and flooding treated sections by adjusting standing water. Inundation increased CH₄ emission by a factor of 4.3 compared to non-flooded sections. This may be due to the decomposition of organic matter under a limited oxygen environment by saturated standing water. On the other hand, CO₂ emission in the dry section was 3.9-fold higher than in others. CH₄ emission tends to increase with deeper thaw depth, which strongly depends on the water table; however, CO₂ emission is not related to thaw depth. Quotients of global warming potential (GWPCO₂) (dry/control) and GWPCH₄ (wet/control) increased by 464 and 148%, respectively, and GWPCH₄ (dry/control) declined by 66%. This suggests that CO₂ emission in a drained section is enhanced by soil and ecosystem respiration, and CH₄ emission in a flooded area is likely stimulated under an anoxic environment by inundated standing water. The findings of this manipulation experiment during the autumn period demonstrate the different production processes of CO₂ and CH₄, as well as different global warming potentials, coupled with change in thaw depth. Thus the outcomes imply that the expansion of tundra lakes leads the enhancement of CH₄ release, and the disappearance of the lakes causes the stimulated CO₂ production in response to the Arctic climate change. PMID:25461040

  8. Effect of thaw depth on fluxes of CO₂ and CH₄ in manipulated Arctic coastal tundra of Barrow, Alaska.

    PubMed

    Kim, Yongwon

    2015-02-01

    Changes in CO₂ and CH₄ emissions represent one of the most significant consequences of drastic climate change in the Arctic, by way of thawing permafrost, a deepened active layer, and decline of thermokarst lakes in the Arctic. This study conducted flux-measurements of CO₂ and CH₄, as well as environmental factors such as temperature, moisture, and thaw depth, as part of a water table manipulation experiment in the Arctic coastal plain tundra of Barrow, Alaska during autumn. The manipulation treatment consisted of draining, controlling, and flooding treated sections by adjusting standing water. Inundation increased CH₄ emission by a factor of 4.3 compared to non-flooded sections. This may be due to the decomposition of organic matter under a limited oxygen environment by saturated standing water. On the other hand, CO₂ emission in the dry section was 3.9-fold higher than in others. CH₄ emission tends to increase with deeper thaw depth, which strongly depends on the water table; however, CO₂ emission is not related to thaw depth. Quotients of global warming potential (GWPCO₂) (dry/control) and GWPCH₄ (wet/control) increased by 464 and 148%, respectively, and GWPCH₄ (dry/control) declined by 66%. This suggests that CO₂ emission in a drained section is enhanced by soil and ecosystem respiration, and CH₄ emission in a flooded area is likely stimulated under an anoxic environment by inundated standing water. The findings of this manipulation experiment during the autumn period demonstrate the different production processes of CO₂ and CH₄, as well as different global warming potentials, coupled with change in thaw depth. Thus the outcomes imply that the expansion of tundra lakes leads the enhancement of CH₄ release, and the disappearance of the lakes causes the stimulated CO₂ production in response to the Arctic climate change.

  9. All-weather ice information system for Alaskan arctic coastal shipping

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gedney, R. T.; Jirberg, R. J.; Schertler, R. J.; Mueller, R. A.; Chase, T. L.; Kramarchuk, I.; Nagy, L. A.; Hanlon, R. A.; Mark, H.

    1977-01-01

    A near real-time ice information system designed to aid arctic coast shipping along the Alaskan North Slope is described. The system utilizes a X-band Side Looking Airborne Radar (SLAR) mounted aboard a U.S. Coast Guard HC-130B aircraft. Radar mapping procedures showing the type, areal distribution and concentration of ice cover were developed. In order to guide vessel operational movements, near real-time SLAR image data were transmitted directly from the SLAR aircraft to Barrow, Alaska and the U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker Glacier. In addition, SLAR image data were transmitted in real time to Cleveland, Ohio via the NOAA-GOES Satellite. Radar images developed in Cleveland were subsequently facsimile transmitted to the U.S. Navy's Fleet Weather Facility in Suitland, Maryland for use in ice forecasting and also as a demonstration back to Barrow via the Communications Technology Satellite.

  10. 2015 DOE Final UF Report. Effects of Warming the Deep Soil and Permafrost on Ecosystem Carbon Balance in Alaskan Tundra. A Coupled Measurement and Modeling Approach

    SciTech Connect

    Schuur, Edward

    2015-06-11

    The major research goal of this project was to understand and quantify the fate of carbon stored in permafrost ecosystems using a combination of field and laboratory experiments to measure isotope ratios and C fluxes in a tundra ecosystem exposed to experimental warming. Field measurements centered on the establishment of a two-factor experimental warming using a snow fence and open top chambers to increase winter and summer temperatures alone, and in combination, at a tundra field site at the Eight Mile Lake watershed near Healy, Alaska. The objective of this experimental warming was to significantly raise air and deep soil temperatures and increase the depth of thaw beyond that of previous warming experiments. Detecting the loss and fate of the old permafrost C pool remains a major challenge. Because soil C has been accumulating in these ecosystems over the past 10,000 years, there is a strong difference between the radiocarbon isotopic composition of C deep in the soil profile and permafrost compared to that near the soil surface. This large range of isotopic variability is unique to radiocarbon and provides a valuable and sensitive fingerprint for detecting the loss of old soil C as permafrost thaws.

  11. Modeling of Dense Water Production and Salt Transport from Alaskan Coastal Polynyas

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Signorini, Sergio R.; Cavalieri, Donald J.

    2000-01-01

    The main significance of this paper is that a realistic, three-dimensional, high-resolution primitive equation model has been developed to study the effects of dense water formation in Arctic coastal polynyas. The model includes realistic ambient stratification, realistic bottom topography, and is forced by time-variant surface heat flux, surface salt flux, and time-dependent coastal flow. The salt and heat fluxes, and the surface ice drift, are derived from satellite observations (SSM/I and NSCAT sensors). The model is used to study the stratification, salt transport, and circulation in the vicinity of Barrow Canyon during the 1996/97 winter season. The coastal flow (Alaska coastal current), which is an extension of the Bering Sea throughflow, is formulated in the model using the wind-transport regression. The results show that for the 1996/97 winter the northeastward coastal current exports 13% to 26% of the salt produced by coastal polynyas upstream of Barrow Canyon in 20 to 30 days. The salt export occurs more rapidly during less persistent polynyas. The inclusion of ice-water stress in the model makes the coastal current slightly weaker and much wider due to the combined effects of surface drag and offshore Ekman transport.

  12. Long-Term Hydrological Changes of Coastal Arctic Tundra Ponds in Drained Thaw Lake Basins

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andresen, C. G.; Lougheed, V.

    2013-12-01

    Given the dominance of these ponds in the tundra landscape, documenting long-term changes in these aquatic systems is essential to understand carbon and energy balance, trophic energy flow, and biodiversity for the Arctic. The combination of remote sensing using historical imagery, as well as rare historical data from the International Biological Program, provides a unique opportunity for understanding long-term changes in hydrology, chemistry and biology of these significant freshwater environments. To assess the changes in pond area and abundance in 22 drained thaw-lake basins (DTLB) across the Barrow Peninsula over the past 60 years, we utilized historic aerial imagery from USGS archives (1948) and modern high-resolution Quickbird (2002, 2008, 2010). Age classification of DTLB was based on Hinkel et al 2003. We compared water temperature, active layer thickness, and aboveground biomass of these systems to historical datasets compiled in the Limnology of Tundra Ponds' by Hobbie et al 1975. We observed an overall decrease of 28% in pond area and 19% decrease in pond number, where smaller ponds (<100m2) had the highest change. These losses were coincident with significantly higher air and water temperature and reduced annual rainfall, which has decreased by 2.5 cm over the past 62 years (-0.4mm/yr). Active layer in ponds increased on average by 15cm. Aquatic grasses increased in density and cover in ponds over the past 40 years. Area and number of ponds loss was independent of DTLB age; however, medium-age DTLBs had significantly higher number of new ponds over old and ancient-age basins. While we observe new ponds due to thaw lake processes, climate seems to be having a stronger effect on these systems by reducing the overall inundated area and pond number in these basins. Increased evaporation due to warmer and longer summers, permafrost degradation, transpiration from encroaching aquatic grasses and changes in precipitation patterns are likely the current major

  13. Modeling dense water production and salt transport from Alaskan coastal polynyas

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Signorini, Sergio R.; Cavalieri, Donald J.

    2002-09-01

    A three-dimensional primitive equation model was used to assess the effects of dense water formation from winter (1996/1997) polynyas on the ambient stratification, salt transport, and circulation in the vicinity of Barrow Canyon. The model, which includes ambient stratification and bottom topography, is forced by time-varying surface heat flux, surface salt flux, and coastal flow. The influence of sea ice drift on the circulation and salt transport is also analyzed by prescribing ice water stress at the sea surface. The surface fluxes and ice drift are derived from satellite observations (Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSM/I) and NASA scatterometer (NSCAT) sensors). The coastal flow (Alaska coastal current), which is an extension of the Bering Sea throughflow, is formulated in the model by using a wind-transport regression. One set of experiments was forced by strong and persistent polynyas, simulated by 20-day averaged heat and salt fluxes originating from the largest events. In this set of experiments both strong and weak steady coastal currents were imposed. The amount of salt exported from the generation area depended on the strength of the current. Another set of experiments was forced by weaker and less persistent polynyas using time-varying forcing. The experiments with time-varying polynya forcing were conducted with two ambient vertical stratifications, one representing fall conditions and one representing winter conditions. The amount of salt retained on the shelf was found to be quite sensitive to the initial stratification. Weaker vertical stratification promotes a deeper mixed layer, which develops 20 times faster than the horizontal advective timescale of the coastal current, thus increasing the residence time of the salt generated by the polynya on the shelf. The time-varying northeastward coastal current, combined with the offshore Ekman transport, can export 29-73% of the salt produced by polynyas upstream of Barrow Canyon, depending upon the

  14. Turbulent transports over tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fitzjarrald, David R.; Moore, Kathleen E.

    1992-01-01

    An extensive period of eddy correlation surface flux measurements was conducted at a site distant from the coast on the western Alaskan tundra. The surface exchange of heat and moisture over tundra during the summer was limited by a strong resistance to transfer from the upper soil layer through the ground cover, with canopy resistances to evaporation observed to be approximately 200 s/m. Though July 1988 was anomalously warm and dry in the region and August was close to normal temperature and rainfall, there was no appreciable difference in the canopy resistance between the periods. During the dry sunny period at the end of July, the observed evaporation rate was 2 mm/d. High canopy resistance led to an approximate equipartition of net radiation between latent and sensible heat, each accounting for 40 percent of the available energy, with heat balance apparently going into soil heat flux.

  15. Community Land Model (CLM) Assessment on Simulating and Analyzing Water, Carbon and Nitrogen Cycles in Arctic Coastal Tundra at Barrow, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuan, F.; Thornton, P. E.; King, A. W.; Ricciuto, D. M.; Post, W. M.

    2012-12-01

    Recent climate warming has been widely hypothesized to be one of primary contributors to shifting both biophysical and biological conditions of Arctic tundra ecosystem and thus water, carbon and nitrogen cycles. Both constrains on integrating multiple-scale observations scattered in various sources and comprehensive process-based model assessments on those may hinder our further and/or deepen understanding of climate impacts on Arctic tundra and their feedbacks. This preliminary study is to assess and improve, as needed, the Community Land Model (CLM-CN mode) on simulating soil water, temperature, nitrogen nutrient and other factors and their effects on soil-plant C stocks and/or fluxes in Arctic tundra at Barrow, Alaska. The model assessment is carried out by exploring and using data compiled from various researches, e.g., AmeriFlux, US/IBP, ITEX and others during past few decades in the area. We add a simple N emission subroutine in the current released CLM4 (in CESM1.0.4) and modify soil water drainage boundary conditions so that model can partially capture the landscape position effects of hydrological process on thermal and biogeochemical processes. We initially parameterize and initialize the model for Arctic tundra at Barrow, AK with 4 new plant functional types (PFTs): mosses, forbs, graminoids, and shrubs, based on literature study. It shows strong inter-annual variance of C fluxes, which tightly coupled with water, temperature and N nutrient dynamics. We then conduct a factory model experiments with drainage classes and varying PFT compositions in order to understand possible water, C and N cycle variations if vegetation changes over landscape. This preliminary analysis is of importance to apply for CLM model in this highly heterogeneous coastal Arctic tundra region under historical and projected climate changes.

  16. Long-term climate patterns in Alaskan surface temperature and precipitation and their biological consequences

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Simpson, James J.; Hufford, Gary L.; Fleming, Michael D.; Berg, Jared S.; Ashton, J.B.

    2002-01-01

    Mean monthly climate maps of Alaskan surface temperature and precipitation produced by the parameter-elevation regression on independent slopes model (PRISM) were analyzed. Alaska is divided into interior and coastal zones with consistent but different climatic variability separated by a transition region; it has maximum interannual variability but low long-term mean variability. Pacific decadal oscillation (PDO)- and El Nin??o southern oscillation (ENSO)-type events influence Alaska surface temperatures weakly (1-2 ??C) statewide. PDO has a stronger influence than ENSO on precipitation but its influence is largely localized to coastal central Alaska. The strongest influence of Arctic oscillation (AO) occurs in northern and interior Alaskan precipitation. Four major ecosystems are defined. A major eco-transition zone occurs between the interior boreal forest and the coastal rainforest. Variability in insolation, surface temperature, precipitation, continentality, and seasonal changes in storm track direction explain the mapped ecosystems. Lack of westward expansion of the interior boreal forest into the western shrub tundra is influenced by the coastal marine boundary layer (enhanced cloud cover, reduced insolation, cooler surface and soil temperatures). In this context, the marine boundary layer acts in an analogous fashion to the orographic features which form the natural boundaries of other Alaskan ecosystems. Variability in precipitation may play a secondary role.

  17. Bacterial and heterotrophic nanoflagellate densities and C-biomass estimates along an Alaskan tundra transect with prediction of respiratory CO2 efflux.

    PubMed

    Anderson, O R

    2014-01-01

    Although tundra terrestrial ecology is significantly affected by global warming, we know relatively little about how eukaryotic microbial communities respond and how much microbial respiratory CO(2) may be released due to available organic nutrient sources in the permafrost melt. Prior research has shown a strong positive correlation between bacteria and fungi in some Arctic locales; this research focused on the relationships of terrestrial bacteria and heterotrophic nanoflagellates. The densities and estimated C-biomass of bacteria and heterotrophic nanoflagellates (a major occurring group of protozoa) were assessed in 14 samples obtained along a 10 km transect in northwest AK during the summer of 2012. Two samples were taken, one at the top and one near the base of seven hummocks along the transect. Densities (no./g soil) of bacteria varied from 2.7-16 × 10(9), and nanoflagellates 0.7-7.9 × 10(7). C-biomass (μg/g soil) of bacteria varied from 358 to 2,114, and nanoflagellates 12-37. Additionally, the rate of respiration was analyzed in the laboratory for each soil sample. A linear relationship between soil respiration and bacterial densities was obtained (20 °C): R(s) = 12.32 + 14.07 Bd (p ≪ 0.01); where R(s) is soil respiration (nmol/min/g soil) and B(d) = bacterial density (no. × 10(9) /g soil).

  18. Distribution and elemental composition of suspended matter in Alaskan coastal waters

    SciTech Connect

    Feely, R.A.; Massoth, G.J.; Paulson, A.J.; Lamb, M.F.

    1980-09-01

    The distribution of suspended matter in the northeastern Gulf of Alaska is affected by a number of parameters which combine to form a unique distribution pattern. East of Kayak Island the surface particulate matter distributions are dominated by the discharge of sedimentary material from the coastal streams which drain the Beering, Guyot and Malaspina Glaciers. The major source of sedimentary material to the Gulf of Alaska is the Copper River. In general, concentrations of suspended matter in the northeast Gulf of Alaska are high at the surface with an average concentration of approximately 1.0 mg/l. Recent studies of oil spills in coastal waters containing high suspended loads have indicated rapid dispersal and removal of the oil by sorption onto particles along frontal zones.

  19. Mercury and major element snowmelt chemistry at an Alaskan Arctic coastal site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Douglas, T. A.; Prevost, R.; Sturm, M.; Blum, J. D.; Sherman, L.; Berezovskaya, S.

    2008-12-01

    Mercury is deposited to snow in Polar Regions during the late winter and early spring. This deposition is driven by photochemical reactions that involve reactive halogens and snow and ice surfaces. The Arctic also receives trace metals, sulfate and black carbon during spring time Arctic haze events. Mercury, Arctic haze metals and sulfate in Arctic snow are likely mobilized during metamorphism, melt and surface runoff in the spring. To investigate this we implemented a daily sampling campaign for mercury and major elements during spring snow melt near Barrow, Alaska in 2008. The area is underlain by continuous permafrost and there is no base flow in the winter. We focused on a small (52,000 m2) ephemeral stream watershed to quantify chemical fluxes at the microscale. Prior to the melt the snow pack was 35 cm high with a density of 0.3 g/cm3. The snow pack height was measured daily at 15 locations along two 1 kilometer long transects throughout the melt to track snow pack loss. Discharge in our micro watershed was measured using a sonic sounder above a small dam constructed in the stream bed and by quantifying flow through a PVC pipe at the dam outlet. Percolation columns began to migrate downward through the snow pack on May 26 and within two days the snow pack was isothermal. Flow in the micro watershed began as a slushy trickle on May 28 that increased to a steady flow by June 4. Peak discharge rates of slightly over 3 L/sec were measured in the late afternoons on June 7, 8 and 9. By June 9 slightly more than half the tundra surface was exposed and snow was relegated to low lying areas. The first melt water to pool at the base of the snow pack had the highest cation (sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium, and ammonium) and anion (chloride, bromide, sulfate, nitrate, bicarbonate) concentrations of all inorganic ions measured in snow, melt water or surface runoff. These major element concentrations were 5 to 10 times higher than pre melt snow pack values. The pre

  20. Changes in Thaw Lake Morphometry on the Barrow Peninsula, Alaskan Arctic Coastal Plain, 1955-2002

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jones, B. M.; Hinkel, K. M.; Eisner, W. R.; Peterson, K. M.; Frohn, R. C.; Beck, R. A.

    2005-12-01

    Since the early 1950s, there have been several studies of thaw lakes on the Barrow Peninsula of northern Alaska that focused largely on lake orientation and morphometry. To date, a comprehensive examination of changes in lake area has not been conducted. Lake expansion can result from shoreline erosion and ground subsidence as permafrost thaws. Lake area reduction occurs in response to complete or partial drainage triggered by infilling, stream activity, or coastal erosion. This study examines the changes in lake area (those >10 hectares) over the period 1955 to 2002. The 1955 data was obtained by digitizing lakes from a digital raster graphic of the 1:63360 scale U.S.G.S. topographic map derived from 1955 aerial survey photography. More recently, lakes were identified on high-resolution ORRI and IFSAR data collected in 2002. During this period, total lake area decreased from 22.0% to 20.8%. The number of lakes decreased by 72, from 337 to 265, and average lake size increased from 139 ha in 1955 to 166 ha in 2002. These changes resulted from lake coalescence, or from partial drainage that reduced lake area below the 10 ha threshold. Of the 72 lakes that are no longer larger than 10 hectares, 22 have completely drained. It appears that 16 have drained by natural causes (headward erosion by streams or coastal erosion) and 6 have drained as a result of human disturbance. There are 4 lakes in 2002 that were not present in 1955; these appear to have resulted from the merger of smaller lakes. By increasing the size of interest to 40 ha to focus on larger lakes, the same general trend is observed. There are currently fewer lakes larger than 40 ha, average lake size has increased, yet aerial coverage of lakes larger than 40 ha has decreased. These results contrast to recent findings reported by Smith and colleagues for large lakes in the continuous permafrost zone of Siberia.

  1. Developing New Strategies for Coping with Weather: Work in Alaskan and Canadian Coastal Communities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atkinson, D. E.

    2014-12-01

    A changing climate is manifested at ground level through the day to day weather. For all Northern residents - community, industrial, operational and response - the need to think about the weather is ever present. Northern residents, and in particular, indigenous community residents, fully understand implications of the weather, however, a comment that has been heard more often is that old ways of knowing are not as reliable as they once were. Weather patterns seem less consistent and subject to more rapid fluctuations. Compromised traditional ways of knowing puts those who need to travel or hunt at greater risk. One response to adapt to this emerging reality is to make greater use of western sources of information, such as weather data and charts provided by NOAA's National Weather Service or Environment Canada. The federal weather agencies have very large and complex forecasting regions to cover, and so one problem is that it can be difficult to provide perfectly tailored forecasts, that cover all possible problems, right down to the very local scale in the communities. Only those affected have a complete feel for their own concerns. Thus, key to a strategy to improve the utility of available weather information is a linking of local-scale manifestations of problematic weather to the larger-scale weather patterns. This is done in two ways: by direct consultation with Northern residents, and by installation of equipment to measure parameters of interest to residents, which are not already being measured. This talk will overview projects in coastal Alaska and Canada targeting this objective. The challenge of designing and conducting interviews, and then of harvesting relevant information, will be visited using examples from the three major contexts: coastal community, industrial, and operational. Examples of how local comments can be married to weather products will be presented.

  2. The Role of Explicitly Modeling Bryophytes in Simulating Carbon Exchange and Permafrost Dynamics of an Arctic Coastal Tundra at Barrow, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yuan, F.; Thornton, P. E.; McGuire, A. D.; Oechel, W. C.; Yang, B.; Tweedie, C. E.; Rogers, A.; Norby, R. J.

    2013-12-01

    Bryophyte cover is greater than 50% in many Arctic tundra ecosystems. In regions of the Arctic where shrubs are expanding it is expected that bryophyte cover will be substantially reduced. Such a loss in cover could influence the hydrological, biogeochemical, and permafrost dynamics of Arctic tundra ecosystems. The explicit representation of bryophyte physiological and biophysical processes in large-scale ecological and land surface models is rare, and we hypothesize that the representation of bryophytes has consequences for estimates of the exchange of water, energy, and carbon by these models. This study explicitly represents the effects of bryophyte function and structure on the exchange of carbon (e.g., summer photosynthesis effects) and energy (e.g., summer insulation effects) with the atmosphere in the Community Land Model (CLM-CN). The modified model was evaluated for its ability to simulate C exchange, soil temperature, and soil moisture since the 1970s at Barrow, Alaska through comparison with data from AmeriFlux sites, USDA Soil Climate Networks observation sites at Barrow, and other sources. We also compare the outputs of the CLM-CN simulations with those of the recently developed Dynamical Organic Soil coupled Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (DOS-TEM). Overall, our evaluation indicates that bryophytes are important contributors to land-atmospheric C exchanges in Arctic tundra and that they play an important role to permafrost thermal and hydrological processes which are critical to permafrost stability. Our next step in this study is to examine the climate system effects of explicitly representing bryophyte dynamics in the land surface model. Key Words: Bryophytes, Arctic coastal tundra, Vegetation composition, Net Ecosystem Exchange, Permafrost, Land Surface Model, Terrestrial Ecosystem Model

  3. Water table height and microtopography control biogeochemical cycling in an Arctic coastal tundra ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lipson, D. A.; Zona, D.; Raab, T. K.; Bozzolo, F.; Mauritz, M.; Oechel, W. C.

    2011-07-01

    Drained thaw lake basins (DTLB) are the dominant land form of the Arctic coastal plain in northern Alaska. The presence of continuous permafrost prevents drainage and so water tables generally remain close to the soil surface, creating saturated, suboxic soil conditions. However, ice wedge polygons produce microtopographic variation in these landscapes, with raised areas such as polygon rims creating more oxic microenvironments. The peat soils in this ecosystem store large amounts of organic carbon which is vulnerable to loss as arctic regions continue to rapidly warm, and so there is great motivation to understand the controls over microbial activity in these complex landscapes. Here we report the effects of experimental flooding, along with seasonal and spatial variation in soil chemistry and microbial activity in a DTLB. The flooding treatment generally mirrored the effects of natural landscape variation in water table height due to microtopography. Areas in the flooded areas had lower dissolved oxygen, lower oxidation-reduction potential (ORP) and higher pH, as did lower elevation areas of the landscape. Similarly, soil pore water concentrations of dissolved ferric iron (Fe III), organic carbon, and aromatic compounds were higher in flooded and low elevation areas. Dissolved carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) concentrations were higher in low elevation areas. In anaerobic laboratory incubations, more CH4 was produced by soils from low and flooded areas, whereas anaerobic CO2 production only responded to flooding in high elevation areas. Seasonal changes in the oxidation state of solid phase Fe minerals showed that significant dissimilatory Fe reduction occurred, especially in topographically low areas. This suite of results can all be attributed to the effect of water table on oxygen availability: flooded conditions promote anoxia, stimulating anaerobic processes, methanogenesis and Fe(III) reduction. Flooding also increased soil temperature, which might

  4. Water-table height and microtopography control biogeochemical cycling in an Arctic coastal tundra ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lipson, D. A.; Zona, D.; Raab, T. K.; Bozzolo, F.; Mauritz, M.; Oechel, W. C.

    2012-01-01

    Drained thaw lake basins (DTLB's) are the dominant land form of the Arctic Coastal Plain in northern Alaska. The presence of continuous permafrost prevents drainage and so water tables generally remain close to the soil surface, creating saturated, suboxic soil conditions. However, ice wedge polygons produce microtopographic variation in these landscapes, with raised areas such as polygon rims creating more oxic microenvironments. The peat soils in this ecosystem store large amounts of organic carbon which is vulnerable to loss as arctic regions continue to rapidly warm, and so there is great motivation to understand the controls over microbial activity in these complex landscapes. Here we report the effects of experimental flooding, along with seasonal and spatial variation in soil chemistry and microbial activity in a DTLB. The flooding treatment generally mirrored the effects of natural landscape variation in water-table height due to microtopography. The flooded portion of the basin had lower dissolved oxygen, lower oxidation-reduction potential (ORP) and higher pH, as did lower elevation areas throughout the entire basin. Similarly, soil pore water concentrations of organic carbon and aromatic compounds were higher in flooded and low elevation areas. Dissolved ferric iron (Fe(III)) concentrations were higher in low elevation areas and responded to the flooding treatment in low areas, only. The high concentrations of soluble Fe(III) in soil pore water were explained by the presence of siderophores, which were much more concentrated in low elevation areas. All the aforementioned variables were correlated, showing that Fe(III) is solubilized in response to anoxic conditions. Dissolved carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) concentrations were higher in low elevation areas, but showed only subtle and/or seasonally dependent effects of flooding. In anaerobic laboratory incubations, more CH4 was produced by soils from low and flooded areas, whereas anaerobic CO2

  5. Photosynthetic Characterization of Plant Functional Types from Coastal Tundra to Improve Representation of the Arctic in Earth System Models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rogers, A.; Xu, C.; McDowell, N. G.; Sloan, V. L.; Norby, R. J.

    2012-12-01

    The primary goal of Earth System Models (ESMs) is to improve understanding and projection of future global change. In order to do this they must accurately represent the carbon fluxes associated with the terrestrial carbon cycle. Photosynthetic CO2 uptake is well described by the Farquhar, von Caemmerer and Berry model of photosynthesis, and most ESMs use a derivation of this model. One of the key parameters required by the Farquhar, von Caemmerer and Berry model is an estimate of the maximum rate of carboxylation by the enzyme Rubisco (Vc,max). In ESMs the parameter Vc,max is usually fixed for a given plant functional type (PFT) and often estimated from the empirical relationship between leaf N content and Vc,max. However, uncertainty in the estimation of Vc,max has been shown to account for significant variation in model estimation of gross primary production, particularly in the Arctic. As part of a new multidisciplinary project to improve the representation of the Arctic in ESMs (Next Generation Ecosystem Experiments - Arctic) we have begun to characterize photosynthetic parameters and N acquisition in the key Arctic PFTs. We measured the response of photosynthesis (A) to internal CO2 concentration (ci) in situ in two sedges (Carex aquatilis, Eriophorum angustifolium), a grass (Dupontia fisheri) and a forb (Petasites frigidus) growing on the Barrow Environmental Observatory, Barrow, AK. The values of Vc,max (normalized to 25oC) currently used to represent Arctic PFTs in ESMs are approximately half of the values we measured in these species in July, 2012, on the coastal tundra in Barrow. We hypothesize that these plants have a greater fraction of leaf N invested in Rubisco (FLNR) than is assumed by the models. The parameter Vc,max is used directly as a driver for respiration in some ESMs, and in other ESMs Vc,max is linked to leaf N content and N acquisition through FLNR. Therefore, these results have implications for ESMs beyond photosynthesis, and suggest that

  6. Alaskan Voices.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Achatz, Mary, Ed.; Caldera, Debra, Ed.; Saylor, Brian; DeGross, Denny

    This paper examines the attitudes of adults and teenagers in 10 predominantly rural Alaskan communities toward their own health and well-being and that of children and families in their community. The communities were located across the state and ranged in size from populations of under 900 to over 50,000. The proportion of Alaska Natives in the…

  7. Soil Carbon Vulnerability in Arctic Coastal Tundra: Seasonal and Spatial Variations in 14C-CO2

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, L. J.; Torn, M. S.; Conrad, M. E.; Curtis, J. B.; Hahn, M. S.

    2013-12-01

    One reason permafrost soils contain large, old soil organic carbon stores is slow decomposition rates due to cold and waterlogged conditions. If climate change causes high latitude soils to warm and dry, carbon emissions from permafrost soils could be an important atmospheric greenhouse gas source. The vulnerability of global Arctic soil carbon stocks to increased decomposition due to thaw is hard to assess, due to environmental heterogeneity, complex controls on microbial processes, uncertain carbon stocks and flux rates, and poorly understood soil carbon stabilization mechanisms. To address these knowledge gaps, we are using radiocarbon measurements to estimate carbon turnover times in polygonal tundra in Barrow, Alaska. Specifically, we ask: (1) how do old versus recently fixed soil carbon pools contribute to total decomposition, (2) how does this vary seasonally, and (3) how does it vary across a permafrost degradation gradient? Old radiocarbon ages of soil organic matter in perennially frozen soils and deep portions of the seasonally thawed active layer reflect slow historic decomposition rates, and changes in the radiocarbon content of respired CO2 indicate relative mineralization rates of this old, stored carbon. At four time points from June-October 2013, we sample soil organic matter and respired CO2 from low-centered, transitional, and high-centered polygons characteristic of a permafrost degradation cycle. We measure the radiocarbon content of CO2 in surface fluxes and soil pore space from 3 depths in the soil profile, and concurrently incubate active layer soils to resolve the 14C-CO2 signatures of individual soil layers. Preliminary data from 2012 suggest that old soil carbon stores are vulnerable to decomposition. CO2 ages increase with depth in the profile from modern radiocarbon ages to as old as 3115 BP, and high incubation flux rates indicate availability to microbes. As part of the Next Generation Ecosystem Experiment (NGEE-Arctic), we now study

  8. Moisture and temperature controls on vertical and lateral soil greenhouse gas emissions in the Alaskan coastal temperate rainforest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    D'Amore, D. V.; Herendeen, P. A.; Yardley, R. R.; Walter, M. T.

    2013-12-01

    The Perhumid Coastal Temperate Rainforest (PCTR) of Alaska and British Columbia is a coastal margin where intense transformations and rapid transfers between atmosphere, land, and ocean characterize the carbon cycle. The cool climate and high precipitation in the PCTR support uptake of atmospheric CO2 by forest and peatland ecosystems. The PCTR has some of the densest terrestrial carbon stocks in the world that is mobilized and re-distributed as dissolved and particulate carbon in streams, and gaseous efflux from both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. These stocks may be vulnerable to changes in soil moisture and temperature regimes that may have notable impacts to terrestrial and marine resources. In particular, methane and nitrous oxide have the potential to be produced in substantial amounts in these wet, organic rich soils and exported via vertical and lateral flux pathways. We have established an integrated catchment observatory to measure the vertical and lateral carbon export, including all greenhouse gases, from terrestrial to both atmospheric and aquatic systems. Initial estimates of net ecosystem production produced from a mass balance carbon flux model in these experimental watersheds ranged from 1.1 to 2.8 Mg C ha-1 y-1. The dissolved component of this flux budget ranged up to 30% of the total carbon export from the watersheds. Soil moisture and temperature fluctuations drive the variability in the overall flux, but the magnitude of lateral carbon delivery is dependent on moisture and temperature conditions within different landscape types, especially peatlands. These observations from the PCTR highlight the importance of lateral carbon fluxes in the total ecosystem carbon budget in this coastal margin system.

  9. Impacts of Arctic Climate Change on Tundra Fire Regimes at Interannual to Millennial Timescales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, F.; Young, A. M.; Chipman, M. L.; Duffy, P.; Higuera, P. E.

    2014-12-01

    Tundra burning is emerging as a key process in the rapidly changing Arctic, and knowledge of tundra fire-regime responses to climate change is essential for projecting Earth system dynamics. This presentation will focus on climate-fire relationships in the Arctic, spatiotemporal patterns of Holocene tundra burning, and the effects of tundra burning on carbon cycling. Analysis of historical records reveals that across the Arctic, tundra burning occurred primarily in areas where mean summer temperature exceeded 9 °C and total summer precipitation was below 115 mm. In Alaska, summer temperature and precipitation explain >90% of the interannual variability in tundra area burned from AD 1950-2009, with thresholds of 10.5 °C and 140 mm. These patterns imply tipping points in tundra fire-regime responses to climate change. The frequency of tundra fires has varied greatly across space and through time. Approximately 1.0% of the circum-Arctic tundra burned from AD 2002-2013, and 4.5% of the Alaskan tundra burned from AD 1950-2009. The latter encompassed ecoregions with fire rotation periods ranging from ~400 to 13,640 years. Charcoal analysis of lake sediments also shows that Arctic tundra can sustain a wide range of fire regimes. Fires were rare on the Alaskan North Slope throughout the Holocene, implying that the climate thresholds evident in the historical records have seldom been crossed. In contrast, in areas of NW Alaska, tundra has burned regularly at 100-250 year intervals during the late Holocene. Tundra burning may cause sudden releases of the enormous amount of Arctic soil C. Charcoal particles from recent burns yielded 14C ages of AD 1952-2006. Thus the C consumed in recent fires may recover through vegetation succession. However, our results suggest that in areas that have burned multiple times in recent decades, old soil C is vulnerable to future fires.

  10. Changes in Landscape-level Carbon Balance of an Arctic Coastal Plain Tundra Ecosystem Between 1970-2100, in Response to Projected Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lara, M. J.; McGuire, A. D.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Genet, H.; Sloan, V. L.; Iversen, C. M.; Norby, R. J.; Zhang, Y.; Yuan, F.

    2014-12-01

    Northern permafrost regions are estimated to cover 16% of the global soil area and account for approximately 50% of the global belowground organic carbon pool. However, there are considerable uncertainties regarding the fate of this soil carbon pool with projected climate warming over the next century. In northern Alaska, nearly 65% of the terrestrial surface is composed of polygonal tundra, where geomorphic land cover types such as high-, flat-, and low-center polygons influence local surface hydrology, plant community composition, nutrient and biogeochemical cycling, over small spatial scales. Due to the lack of representation of these fine-scale geomorphic types and ecosystem processes, in large-scale terrestrial ecosystem models, future uncertainties are large for this tundra region. In this study, we use a new version of the terrestrial ecosystem model (TEM), that couples a dynamic vegetation model (in which plant functional types compete for water, nitrogen, and light) with a dynamic soil organic model (in which temperature, moisture, and associated organic/inorganic carbon and nitrogen pools/fluxes vary together in vertically resolved layers) to simulate ecosystem carbon balance. We parameterized and calibrated this model using data specific to the local climate, vegetation, and soil associated with tundra geomorphic types. We extrapolate model results at a 1km2 resolution across the ~1800 km2 Barrow Peninsula using a tundra geomorphology map, describing ten dominant geomorphic tundra types (Lara et al. submitted), to estimate the likely change in landscape-level carbon balance between 1970 and 2100 in response to projected climate change. Preliminary model runs for this region indicated temporal variability in carbon and active layer dynamics, specific to tundra geomorphic type over time. Overall, results suggest that it is important to consider small-scale discrete polygonal tundra geomorphic types that control local structure and function in regional

  11. Radioisotopes (137Cs, 40K, 210Pb) indicate that cryoturbation processes in Alaskan tussock tundra are accelerated under deeper winter snow: results from short and long-term winter snow depth experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blanc-Betes, E.; Sturchio, N. C.; Taneva, L.; Welker, J. M.; Guilderson, T. P.; Poghosyan, A.; Gonzalez-Meler, M. A.

    2010-12-01

    Permafrost soils cover 8.6% of the Earth land area and contain up to 50% of the global soil organic carbon (SOC) pool. Amplified warming in northern latitudes has resulted directly and/or indirectly in multiple structural and functional changes in arctic ecosystems which may lead to strong forcing feedbacks on the climate system. Cryoturbation is a dominant soil forming process in permafrost regions that results to the mixing of soil layers during freeze-thaw cycles, and may increase in rates following global warming. As a result, the active layer of cryoturbated soils can average 62% larger C stocks than those from non-cryoturbated ones. Cryoturbation is a critical overlooked driver of C dynamics in permafrost soils that will likely play a pivotal role in the fate of Arctic soil C under climate change conditions. However, cryoturbation phenomena is difficult to quantify. We measured cryoturbation rates using a multiple isotope approach at Toolik Lake, Alaska, in moist acidic tundra soils from short- and long-term snow addition experiments. Shifts in cryoturbation rates as affected by these manipulations were measured by the relative activity of natural and weapon-derived radioisotopes (e.g. 137Cs, 40K, 210Pb). By tracking the vertical distribution of these fallout and natural radioisotopes in soils and calculating soil diffusion coefficients, we were able to quantify cryoturbation mixing rates and sediment transport mechanisms that operate at multiannual time scales. Our results show an apparent uplift of buried organic matter to the surface as a result of soil thermal insulation and subsequent deepening of the active layer. These results sharply contrast with current notions that cryoturbation in Arctic systems results in net burial of organic matter, resulting in increased C storage at depth. Mechanisms of this mechanical mixing and its effects on C redistribution and storage of organic matter will be presented to shed light on this apparent contradiction.

  12. Rapid Vegetational Change in Coastal North America: The Response to Climate Since the LGM

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Peteet, Dorothy; Kneller, Margaret

    1999-01-01

    The late-glacial interval provided rapid shifts in climate which are mirrored by dramatic vegetational changes in North America. Through a transect of lake and mire sites from Connecticut to Virginia on the east coast and Kodiak Island on the western coast, we trace the warming following the LGM with the response of forests and tundra. A brief cold reversal in Virginia is seen from 12,260 to 12,200. The subsequent longer and extreme Younger Dryas event is marked in the southern New England - New Jersey region by dramatic boreal and deciduous forest changes. In the southeastern US, forests also change rapidly, with hemlock forest expansion suggesting increased moisture. In Kodiak Island, the warm, moist tundra of the Bolling/Allerod is replaced by colder, windswept Empetrum-dominated tundra during the Younger Dryas. The Pleistocene/Holocene shift in vegetation is remarkably pronounced in eastern North America as well as the Alaskan coastline. Response time of vegetation to climate change appears to be on the order of decades throughout these coastal locations, probably because of the proximity of sites to important ecotonal boundaries, and the magnitude of the events. Even in Virginia's Holocene record, a cold reversal inferred from increases in spruce and fir is noted at 7500 C14 yr BP. This response of the forests to a short-lived cooling shows the sensitivity of the biosphere to a rapid climate shifts.

  13. New York's TUNDRA.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kalinowski, Thomas

    1983-01-01

    Found at the summit of some of the highest peaks of New York State's Adirondack Mountains are low-growing plants similar, and in many cases, identical to plants growing in the Arctic. Describes these plants and the environment in which they are found. Includes a color plate of alpine tundra plants. (Author/JN)

  14. Social indicators study of Alaskan Coastal Villages I. Key informant summaries. Volume 2. Schedule B regions (Bristol Bay, Kodiak, Bering Straits). Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Brelsford, T.; Fienup-Riordan, A.; Jorgensen, J.; McNabb, S.; Petrivelli, P.

    1992-08-01

    The focus of this report is on Alaska Natives--Inupiaq and Yupik Eskimos, Athabascans, and Aleuts--for two important reasons: (1) Alaska Natives are numerically dominant populations in rural areas closest to potential offshore oil development sites and (2) their economic adjustments are most vulnerable to potential impacts from such development. This report is divided into Schedules A, B, and C. Comprising Schedules A and B are the study areas originally identified by Minerals Management Service for this study (North Slope, NANA, Bering Straits, Calista, Bristol Bay, Aleutian-Pribilof Islands, and Kodiak regions). Schedule C is comprised of communities that were added subsequent to the Exxon Valdez oil spill of 1989 in the Prince William Sound and Cook Inlet regions. One aim of this study was to document the attitudes and belief systems or ideologies about quality of life and well-being in the coastal, rural portions of Alaska.

  15. Structural complexity and land-surface energy exchange along a gradient from arctic tundra to boreal forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Thompson, C.; Beringer, J.; Chapin, F. S.; McGuire, A.D.

    2004-01-01

    Question: Current climate changes in the Alaskan Arctic, which are characterized by increases in temperature and length of growing season, could alter vegetation structure, especially through increases in shrub cover or the movement of treeline. These changes in vegetation structure have consequences for the climate system. What is the relationship between structural complexity and partitioning of surface energy along a gradient from tundra through shrub tundra to closed canopy forest? Location: Arctic tundra-boreal forest transition in the Alaskan Arctic. Methods: Along this gradient of increasing canopy complexity, we measured key vegetation characteristics, including community composition, biomass, cover, height, leaf area index and stem area index. We relate these vegetation characteristics to albedo and the partitioning of net radiation into ground, latent, and sensible heating fluxes. Results: Canopy complexity increased along the sequence from tundra to forest due to the addition of new plant functional types. This led to non-linear changes in biomass, cover, and height in the understory. The increased canopy complexity resulted in reduced ground heat fluxes, relatively conserved latent heat fluxes and increased sensible heat fluxes. The localized warming associated with increased sensible heating over more complex canopies may amplify regional warming, causing further vegetation change in the Alaskan Arctic.

  16. Women and Minorities in Alaskan Aviation. Alaskan Equity Publication.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dordan, Mary Lou; Nicholson, Deborah

    This resource guide tells the story of Alaskan women and minority aviators and those in aviation-related businesses, from the early 20th century to the present. Developed for secondary students but also suitable for younger students, the guide combines six accounts of Alaskan women and minority aviators with classroom activities centered around…

  17. Metagenomics Reveals Pervasive Bacterial Populations and Reduced Community Diversity across the Alaska Tundra Ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Johnston, Eric R; Rodriguez-R, Luis M; Luo, Chengwei; Yuan, Mengting M; Wu, Liyou; He, Zhili; Schuur, Edward A G; Luo, Yiqi; Tiedje, James M; Zhou, Jizhong; Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T

    2016-01-01

    How soil microbial communities contrast with respect to taxonomic and functional composition within and between ecosystems remains an unresolved question that is central to predicting how global anthropogenic change will affect soil functioning and services. In particular, it remains unclear how small-scale observations of soil communities based on the typical volume sampled (1-2 g) are generalizable to ecosystem-scale responses and processes. This is especially relevant for remote, northern latitude soils, which are challenging to sample and are also thought to be more vulnerable to climate change compared to temperate soils. Here, we employed well-replicated shotgun metagenome and 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing to characterize community composition and metabolic potential in Alaskan tundra soils, combining our own datasets with those publically available from distant tundra and temperate grassland and agriculture habitats. We found that the abundance of many taxa and metabolic functions differed substantially between tundra soil metagenomes relative to those from temperate soils, and that a high degree of OTU-sharing exists between tundra locations. Tundra soils were an order of magnitude less complex than their temperate counterparts, allowing for near-complete coverage of microbial community richness (~92% breadth) by sequencing, and the recovery of 27 high-quality, almost complete (>80% completeness) population bins. These population bins, collectively, made up to ~10% of the metagenomic datasets, and represented diverse taxonomic groups and metabolic lifestyles tuned toward sulfur cycling, hydrogen metabolism, methanotrophy, and organic matter oxidation. Several population bins, including members of Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Proteobacteria, were also present in geographically distant (~100-530 km apart) tundra habitats (full genome representation and up to 99.6% genome-derived average nucleotide identity). Collectively, our results revealed that

  18. The Blazing Arctic? Linkages of Tundra Fire Regimes to Climatic Change and Implications for Carbon Cycling (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hu, F.; Higuera, P. E.; Walsh, J. E.; Chapman, W.; Duffy, P.; Brubaker, L.; Chipman, M. L.

    2010-12-01

    Among the major challenges in anticipating Arctic changes are “surprises” stemming from changes in system components that have remained relatively stable in the historic record. Tundra burning is potentially one such component. We conducted charcoal analysis of lake sediments from several tundra regions to evaluate the uniqueness of recent tundra fires, and examined potential climatic controls of Alaskan tundra fires from CE 1950-2009. A striking example of tundra burning is the 2007 Anaktuvuk River (AR) Fire, an unusually large fire in the tundra of the Alaskan Arctic. This fire doubled the area burned north of 68 oN in that region since record keeping began in 1950. Analysis of lake-sediment cores reveals peak values of charcoal accumulation corresponding to the AR Fire in 2007, with no evidence of other fire events in that area throughout the past five millennia. However, a number of tundra fires, including one as large as the AR Fire, have occurred over the past 60 years in western Alaska, where average summer temperatures are substantially higher than the AR area. In addition, charcoal analysis of lake sediments from interior and northwestern Alaska suggests that during certain periods of the Late Glacial and Holocene, tundra fire frequencies were as high as those of the modern boreal forests. These records along with the AR and historic fires demonstrate that tundra ecosystems support diverse fire regimes and can burn frequently. Reconciling these dramatic differences in tundra fire regimes requires knowledge of climate-fire relationships. Atmospheric reanalysis suggests that the AR Fire was favored by exceptionally warm/dry weather conditions in summer and early autumn. Boosted regression tree modeling shows that warm, dry summer conditions can explain up to 95% of the inter-annual variability in tundra area burned throughout Alaska over the past 60 years and that the response of tundra burning to climatic warming is non-linear. Additionally, tundra area

  19. Alaskan Commodities Irradiation Project

    SciTech Connect

    Zarling, J.P.; Swanson, R.B.; Logan, R.R.; Das, D.K.; Lewis, C.E.; Workman, W.G.; Tumeo, M.A.; Hok, C.I.; Birklid, C.A.; Bennett, F.L.

    1988-12-01

    The ninety-ninth US Congress commissioned a six-state food irradiation research and development program to evaluate the commercial potential of this technology. Hawaii, Washington, Iowa, Oklahoma and Florida as well as Alaska have participated in the national program; various food products including fishery products, red meats, tropical and citrus fruits and vegetables have been studied. The purpose of the Alaskan study was to review and evaluate those factors related to the technical and economic feasibility of an irradiator in Alaska. This options analysis study will serve as a basis for determining the state's further involvement in the development of food irradiation technology. 40 refs., 50 figs., 53 tabs.

  20. Cold season emissions dominate the Arctic tundra methane budget.

    PubMed

    Zona, Donatella; Gioli, Beniamino; Commane, Róisín; Lindaas, Jakob; Wofsy, Steven C; Miller, Charles E; Dinardo, Steven J; Dengel, Sigrid; Sweeney, Colm; Karion, Anna; Chang, Rachel Y-W; Henderson, John M; Murphy, Patrick C; Goodrich, Jordan P; Moreaux, Virginie; Liljedahl, Anna; Watts, Jennifer D; Kimball, John S; Lipson, David A; Oechel, Walter C

    2016-01-01

    Arctic terrestrial ecosystems are major global sources of methane (CH4); hence, it is important to understand the seasonal and climatic controls on CH4 emissions from these systems. Here, we report year-round CH4 emissions from Alaskan Arctic tundra eddy flux sites and regional fluxes derived from aircraft data. We find that emissions during the cold season (September to May) account for ≥ 50% of the annual CH4 flux, with the highest emissions from noninundated upland tundra. A major fraction of cold season emissions occur during the "zero curtain" period, when subsurface soil temperatures are poised near 0 °C. The zero curtain may persist longer than the growing season, and CH4 emissions are enhanced when the duration is extended by a deep thawed layer as can occur with thick snow cover. Regional scale fluxes of CH4 derived from aircraft data demonstrate the large spatial extent of late season CH4 emissions. Scaled to the circumpolar Arctic, cold season fluxes from tundra total 12 ± 5 (95% confidence interval) Tg CH4 y(-1), ∼ 25% of global emissions from extratropical wetlands, or ∼ 6% of total global wetland methane emissions. The dominance of late-season emissions, sensitivity to soil environmental conditions, and importance of dry tundra are not currently simulated in most global climate models. Because Arctic warming disproportionally impacts the cold season, our results suggest that higher cold-season CH4 emissions will result from observed and predicted increases in snow thickness, active layer depth, and soil temperature, representing important positive feedbacks on climate warming.

  1. Cold season emissions dominate the Arctic tundra methane budget

    PubMed Central

    Zona, Donatella; Gioli, Beniamino; Lindaas, Jakob; Wofsy, Steven C.; Miller, Charles E.; Dinardo, Steven J.; Dengel, Sigrid; Sweeney, Colm; Karion, Anna; Chang, Rachel Y.-W.; Henderson, John M.; Murphy, Patrick C.; Goodrich, Jordan P.; Moreaux, Virginie; Liljedahl, Anna; Watts, Jennifer D.; Kimball, John S.; Lipson, David A.; Oechel, Walter C.

    2016-01-01

    Arctic terrestrial ecosystems are major global sources of methane (CH4); hence, it is important to understand the seasonal and climatic controls on CH4 emissions from these systems. Here, we report year-round CH4 emissions from Alaskan Arctic tundra eddy flux sites and regional fluxes derived from aircraft data. We find that emissions during the cold season (September to May) account for ≥50% of the annual CH4 flux, with the highest emissions from noninundated upland tundra. A major fraction of cold season emissions occur during the “zero curtain” period, when subsurface soil temperatures are poised near 0 °C. The zero curtain may persist longer than the growing season, and CH4 emissions are enhanced when the duration is extended by a deep thawed layer as can occur with thick snow cover. Regional scale fluxes of CH4 derived from aircraft data demonstrate the large spatial extent of late season CH4 emissions. Scaled to the circumpolar Arctic, cold season fluxes from tundra total 12 ± 5 (95% confidence interval) Tg CH4 y−1, ∼25% of global emissions from extratropical wetlands, or ∼6% of total global wetland methane emissions. The dominance of late-season emissions, sensitivity to soil environmental conditions, and importance of dry tundra are not currently simulated in most global climate models. Because Arctic warming disproportionally impacts the cold season, our results suggest that higher cold-season CH4 emissions will result from observed and predicted increases in snow thickness, active layer depth, and soil temperature, representing important positive feedbacks on climate warming. PMID:26699476

  2. Cold season emissions dominate the Arctic tundra methane budget.

    PubMed

    Zona, Donatella; Gioli, Beniamino; Commane, Róisín; Lindaas, Jakob; Wofsy, Steven C; Miller, Charles E; Dinardo, Steven J; Dengel, Sigrid; Sweeney, Colm; Karion, Anna; Chang, Rachel Y-W; Henderson, John M; Murphy, Patrick C; Goodrich, Jordan P; Moreaux, Virginie; Liljedahl, Anna; Watts, Jennifer D; Kimball, John S; Lipson, David A; Oechel, Walter C

    2016-01-01

    Arctic terrestrial ecosystems are major global sources of methane (CH4); hence, it is important to understand the seasonal and climatic controls on CH4 emissions from these systems. Here, we report year-round CH4 emissions from Alaskan Arctic tundra eddy flux sites and regional fluxes derived from aircraft data. We find that emissions during the cold season (September to May) account for ≥ 50% of the annual CH4 flux, with the highest emissions from noninundated upland tundra. A major fraction of cold season emissions occur during the "zero curtain" period, when subsurface soil temperatures are poised near 0 °C. The zero curtain may persist longer than the growing season, and CH4 emissions are enhanced when the duration is extended by a deep thawed layer as can occur with thick snow cover. Regional scale fluxes of CH4 derived from aircraft data demonstrate the large spatial extent of late season CH4 emissions. Scaled to the circumpolar Arctic, cold season fluxes from tundra total 12 ± 5 (95% confidence interval) Tg CH4 y(-1), ∼ 25% of global emissions from extratropical wetlands, or ∼ 6% of total global wetland methane emissions. The dominance of late-season emissions, sensitivity to soil environmental conditions, and importance of dry tundra are not currently simulated in most global climate models. Because Arctic warming disproportionally impacts the cold season, our results suggest that higher cold-season CH4 emissions will result from observed and predicted increases in snow thickness, active layer depth, and soil temperature, representing important positive feedbacks on climate warming. PMID:26699476

  3. Cold season emissions dominate the Arctic tundra methane budget

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zona, Donatella; Gioli, Beniamino; Commane, Róisín; Lindaas, Jakob; Wofsy, Steven C.; Miller, Charles E.; Dinardo, Steven J.; Dengel, Sigrid; Sweeney, Colm; Karion, Anna; Chang, Rachel Y.-W.; Henderson, John M.; Murphy, Patrick C.; Goodrich, Jordan P.; Moreaux, Virginie; Liljedahl, Anna; Watts, Jennifer D.; Kimball, John S.; Lipson, David A.; Oechel, Walter C.

    2016-01-01

    Arctic terrestrial ecosystems are major global sources of methane (CH4); hence, it is important to understand the seasonal and climatic controls on CH4 emissions from these systems. Here, we report year-round CH4 emissions from Alaskan Arctic tundra eddy flux sites and regional fluxes derived from aircraft data. We find that emissions during the cold season (September to May) account for ≥50% of the annual CH4 flux, with the highest emissions from noninundated upland tundra. A major fraction of cold season emissions occur during the "zero curtain" period, when subsurface soil temperatures are poised near 0 °C. The zero curtain may persist longer than the growing season, and CH4 emissions are enhanced when the duration is extended by a deep thawed layer as can occur with thick snow cover. Regional scale fluxes of CH4 derived from aircraft data demonstrate the large spatial extent of late season CH4 emissions. Scaled to the circumpolar Arctic, cold season fluxes from tundra total 12 ± 5 (95% confidence interval) Tg CH4 y-1, ∼25% of global emissions from extratropical wetlands, or ∼6% of total global wetland methane emissions. The dominance of late-season emissions, sensitivity to soil environmental conditions, and importance of dry tundra are not currently simulated in most global climate models. Because Arctic warming disproportionally impacts the cold season, our results suggest that higher cold-season CH4 emissions will result from observed and predicted increases in snow thickness, active layer depth, and soil temperature, representing important positive feedbacks on climate warming.

  4. Coastal geomorphology of arctic Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Barnes, Peter W.; Rawlinson, Stuart E.; Reimnitz, Erk

    1988-01-01

    The treeless, tundra-plain of northern Alaska merges with the Arctic Ocean along a coastal area characterized by low tundra bluffs, and sparse coastal and delta dunes. Coastal engineering projects that aggrade or degrade permafrost will alter the geomorphology and rates of coastal processes by changing coastal stability. Similarly, projects that modify the ice environment (artificial islands) or the coastal configuration (causeways) will cause nature to readjust to the new process regime, resulting in modification of the coast. In this paper the authors describe the coastal geomorphology from Barrow to the Canadian border. In addition, they provide a general outline and extensive references of the major coastal processes operating in this environment that will be useful on coastal environments elsewhere in the Arctic.

  5. Tundra Fire Effects Mapping from Synthetic Aperture Radar Satellite Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jenkins, L. K.; Bourgeau-Chavez, L. L.; French, N. H.; Loboda, T. V.; Chavez, M. C.; Hawkins, S. M.

    2013-12-01

    Traditional electro-optical, satellite-based methods of fire detection and monitoring are severely limited in the arctic due to persistent cloud cover and short growing seasons. Radar data can provide an alternative to traditional electro-optical methods due to all-weather imaging capabilities. Previous research in boreal forests and current evaluation in the Alaskan tundra shows that synthetic aperture radar (SAR) data can be used successfully to map burn perimeters and distinguish burned and unburned areas within the perimeter over a longer period of time than optical sensors. Results will be presented on the use of SAR data to measure spatial variations in the microwave signature across a fire scar as well as temporally throughout the growing season and across multiple years. The extensive historical archive of ERS-1 and -2 SAR data has been used to characterize three burned areas in the tundra regions of Alaska. These fires include the 1993 Wainwright fires in the north-western part of the North Slope (Fig 1), the 1999 Uvgoon fire in the Noatak National Preserve and 2007 Anaktuvuk River fire north of the Brooks Range in the central area of the North Slope. The data record includes pre-burn, burn, and post-burn observations until the fire scars are no longer discernible on the landscape. Our results show that burned areas are visible reliably five years post burn and then faintly apparent thereafter up to 12 or more years post-burn. Conversely, our analysis of electro-optical (Landsat) imagery shows near complete obscuration of the fire scar one year post-burn (Loboda et al. 2013). Also presented are results of an analysis of the effects of post-fire soil moisture, as measured in weather and climate datasets, on the SAR signature measured from the available image data archive. Reference: Loboda, T L, N H F French, C Hight-Harf, L Jenkins, M E Miller. 2013. Mapping fire extent and burn severity in Alaskan tussock tundra: An analysis of the spectral response of

  6. The 1977 tundra fire at Kokolik River, Alaska

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hall, D.; Brown, J.; Johnson, L.

    1981-01-01

    During the summer of 1977, fire totaled 44 sq km of tundra vegetation according to measurements using LANDSAT imagery. Based on the experience gained from analysis of this fire using ground observations, satellite imagery, and topographic maps, it appears that natural drainages form effective fire breaks on the subdued relief of the Arctic coastal plain and northern foothills. It is confirmed that the intensity of the fire is related to vegetation type and to the moisture content of the organic rich soils.

  7. Decade time scale plot to landscape scale change in tundra ecosystem structure and function near Barrow, AK

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, D. H.; Johnson, D. R.; Lara, M. J.; Villarreal, S.; Hollister, R. D.; Webber, P. J.; Tweedie, C. E.

    2012-12-01

    Several models suggest shifts in tundra ecosystem structure and function are likely to affect the future state of the Arctic system and how these shifts may impact the global system. Validation of such predictions remains a challenge, however, due to the lack of sustained environmental observations throughout much of the Arctic. In the absence of sustained monitoring, relocating, rescuing, and retrospectively resampling historic research sites and datasets has proven to be an effective means to establish likely change scenarios and develop hypotheses of future change trajectories. This study, synthesizes several recently published works that have used this retrospective approach to explore plot to landscape change in tundra ecosystem structure and function near Barrow, Alaska over the past half Century. This study is a contribution to the International Polar Year 'Back to the Future' project IPY-BTF, IPY # 512). At the landscape level, analysis of land cover change of time series high spatial resolution aerial and satellite imagery spanning 1948-2008 show an overall increase in the extent of dry and moist land cover and open water, and a decrease in the extent of wet and aquatic, land cover types. The 'drying' trend noted for the coastal landscape of Barrow is similar to that noted for four other Alaskan tundra landscapes but in the same study, the Barrow landscape also showed the most dramatic change in wet and aquatic land cover types. Plot level studies of sites, established in 1972 during the International Biological Program, that have been resampled three times show that species richness and diversity has increased and that wet plant communities have changed more than dry plant communities. An analysis of ecosystem function coupled to this plot level study suggests the greatest functional change has occurred in aquatic and wet plant communities where methane efflux and net ecosystem production (NEP) has increased and albedo and the normalized difference

  8. Shrub tundra snowmelt

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pomeroy, J. W.; Bewley, D. S.; Essery, R. L. H.; Hedstrom, N. R.; Link, T.; Granger, R. J.; Sicart, J. E.; Ellis, C. R.; Janowicz, J. R.

    2006-03-01

    Observations of land surface and snowpack energetics and mass fluxes were made over arctic shrub tundra of varying canopy height and density using radiometers, eddy covariance flux measurements, and snow mass changes from snow surveys of depth and density. Over several years, snow accumulation in the shrubs was found to be consistently higher than in sparse tundra due to greater retention of snowfall by all shrubs and wind redistribution of snowfall to tall shrubs. Where snow accumulation was highest due to snow redistribution, shrubs often became buried by the end of winter. Three classes of shrub-snow interactions were observed: tall shrubs that were exposed over snow, tall shrubs that were bent over and buried by snow, and short shrubs buried by snow. Tall shrubs buried by snow underwent spring-up during melt. Though spring-up was episodic for a single shrub, over an area it was a progressive emergence from early to mid melt of vegetation that dramatically altered the radiative and aerodynamic properties of the surface. Short shrubs were exposed more rapidly once snow depth declined below shrub height, usually near the end of melt. Net radiation increased with increasing shrub due to the decreased reflectance of shortwave radiation overwhelming the increased longwave emission from relatively warm and dark shrubs. Net radiation to snow under shrubs was much smaller than that over shrubs, but was greater than that to snow with minimal shrub exposure, in this case the difference was due to downward longwave radiation from the canopy exceeding the effect of attenuated shortwave transmission through the canopy. Because of reduced turbulent transfer under shrub canopies and minimal water vapour contributions from the bare shrub branches, sublimation fluxes declined with increasing shrub exposure. In contrast, sensible heat fluxes to the shrub surface became more negative and those to the underlying snow surface more positive with increasing shrub exposure, because of

  9. An Alaskan legend

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mann, H.; Blodgett, R.B.

    2009-01-01

    Jack Lee is a prominent personality, an Alaskan individualist and a skeptic worthy of remembrance if for no other reason than being inextricably associated with the catastrophic Katmai eruption in 1912. Jack remains a provocative reminder of Alaska's pre-1958 drilling and was quite possibly the earliest observer (excepting natives and possibly Russians) of the oil seeps in the area now encompassed by the Becharof National Wildlife Refuge. His observation of the impressive live oil seeps in the Ugashik and Becharof Lakes area, and his subsequent involvement in the early drilling entirely consumed his future interests. He is a firm believer that individualism and suspicion are powerful tools when forced to reconsider alternatives to readily accepted interpretations of modern exploration results. His individualism and sometimes annoying, but thought-provoking skepticism remains useful in any field where clich??s provide safe guards from new concepts.

  10. Tundra ponds of the Yukon Delta, Alaska, and their macroinvertebrate communities.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Maciolek, J.A.

    1989-01-01

    The Yukon Delta, a low alluvial tundra in western Alaska, has more than 105 thaw-basin ponds within its 70000 km2 area. In 1984 and 1985, 68 ponds in three interior areas of the Delta were surveyed to determine limnological features, macroinvertebrate fauna, and trophic character. Ponds ranged up to 90 ha in area, 2 m in depth, and 17 m in elevation, and occurred in various temporal stages of growth and senescence. Among the 18 major invertebrate taxa collected, in order of decreasing frequency of occurrence, Trichoptera, Hemiptera, Diptera, Pelecypoda, Isopoda, Coleoptera, Gastropoda, and Oligochaeta were found in over 50% of the ponds. Trichoptera, the only taxon occurring in all ponds, was represented by 22 species of 6 families. The average Delta pond had 6.6 of the nine more common taxa. This measure of faunal richness was similar among study areas but was higher in low-tundra (sea level) ponds and in older ponds on raised tundra. In comparison, lentic invertebrate communities in five other areas of Alaskan and Canadian tundra had fewer taxa and also lower average richness based on occurrence of the same nine taxa.

  11. Anurans in a Subarctic Tundra Landscape Near Cape Churchill, Manitoba

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reiter, M.E.; Boal, C.W.; Andersen, D.E.

    2008-01-01

    Distribution, abundance, and habitat relationships of anurans inhabiting subarctic regions are poorly understood, and anuran monitoring protocols developed for temperate regions may not be applicable across large roadless areas of northern landscapes. In addition, arctic and subarctic regions of North America are predicted to experience changes in climate and, in some areas, are experiencing habitat alteration due to high rates of herbivory by breeding and migrating waterfowl. To better understand subarctic anuran abundance, distribution, and habitat associations, we conducted anuran calling surveys in the Cape Churchill region of Wapusk National Park, Manitoba, Canada, in 2004 and 2005. We conducted surveys along ~l-km transects distributed across three landscape types (coastal tundra, interior sedge meadow-tundra, and boreal forest-tundra interface) to estimate densities and probabilities of detection of Boreal Chorus Frogs (Pseudacris maculata) and Wood Frogs (Lithobates sylvaticus). We detected a Wood Frog or Boreal Chorus Frog on 22 (87%) of 26 transects surveyed, but probability of detection varied between years and species and among landscape types. Estimated densities of both species increased from the coastal zone inland toward the boreal forest edge. Our results suggest anurans occur across all three landscape types in our study area, but that species-specific spatial patterns exist in their abundances. Considerations for both spatial and temporal variation in abundance and detection probability need to be incorporated into surveys and monitoring programs for subarctic anurans.

  12. Metagenomics Reveals Pervasive Bacterial Populations and Reduced Community Diversity across the Alaska Tundra Ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Johnston, Eric R.; Rodriguez-R, Luis M.; Luo, Chengwei; Yuan, Mengting M.; Wu, Liyou; He, Zhili; Schuur, Edward A. G.; Luo, Yiqi; Tiedje, James M.; Zhou, Jizhong; Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T.

    2016-01-01

    How soil microbial communities contrast with respect to taxonomic and functional composition within and between ecosystems remains an unresolved question that is central to predicting how global anthropogenic change will affect soil functioning and services. In particular, it remains unclear how small-scale observations of soil communities based on the typical volume sampled (1–2 g) are generalizable to ecosystem-scale responses and processes. This is especially relevant for remote, northern latitude soils, which are challenging to sample and are also thought to be more vulnerable to climate change compared to temperate soils. Here, we employed well-replicated shotgun metagenome and 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing to characterize community composition and metabolic potential in Alaskan tundra soils, combining our own datasets with those publically available from distant tundra and temperate grassland and agriculture habitats. We found that the abundance of many taxa and metabolic functions differed substantially between tundra soil metagenomes relative to those from temperate soils, and that a high degree of OTU-sharing exists between tundra locations. Tundra soils were an order of magnitude less complex than their temperate counterparts, allowing for near-complete coverage of microbial community richness (~92% breadth) by sequencing, and the recovery of 27 high-quality, almost complete (>80% completeness) population bins. These population bins, collectively, made up to ~10% of the metagenomic datasets, and represented diverse taxonomic groups and metabolic lifestyles tuned toward sulfur cycling, hydrogen metabolism, methanotrophy, and organic matter oxidation. Several population bins, including members of Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Proteobacteria, were also present in geographically distant (~100–530 km apart) tundra habitats (full genome representation and up to 99.6% genome-derived average nucleotide identity). Collectively, our results revealed

  13. Metagenomics Reveals Pervasive Bacterial Populations and Reduced Community Diversity across the Alaska Tundra Ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Johnston, Eric R; Rodriguez-R, Luis M; Luo, Chengwei; Yuan, Mengting M; Wu, Liyou; He, Zhili; Schuur, Edward A G; Luo, Yiqi; Tiedje, James M; Zhou, Jizhong; Konstantinidis, Konstantinos T

    2016-01-01

    How soil microbial communities contrast with respect to taxonomic and functional composition within and between ecosystems remains an unresolved question that is central to predicting how global anthropogenic change will affect soil functioning and services. In particular, it remains unclear how small-scale observations of soil communities based on the typical volume sampled (1-2 g) are generalizable to ecosystem-scale responses and processes. This is especially relevant for remote, northern latitude soils, which are challenging to sample and are also thought to be more vulnerable to climate change compared to temperate soils. Here, we employed well-replicated shotgun metagenome and 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing to characterize community composition and metabolic potential in Alaskan tundra soils, combining our own datasets with those publically available from distant tundra and temperate grassland and agriculture habitats. We found that the abundance of many taxa and metabolic functions differed substantially between tundra soil metagenomes relative to those from temperate soils, and that a high degree of OTU-sharing exists between tundra locations. Tundra soils were an order of magnitude less complex than their temperate counterparts, allowing for near-complete coverage of microbial community richness (~92% breadth) by sequencing, and the recovery of 27 high-quality, almost complete (>80% completeness) population bins. These population bins, collectively, made up to ~10% of the metagenomic datasets, and represented diverse taxonomic groups and metabolic lifestyles tuned toward sulfur cycling, hydrogen metabolism, methanotrophy, and organic matter oxidation. Several population bins, including members of Acidobacteria, Actinobacteria, and Proteobacteria, were also present in geographically distant (~100-530 km apart) tundra habitats (full genome representation and up to 99.6% genome-derived average nucleotide identity). Collectively, our results revealed that

  14. Alaska North Slope Tundra Travel Model and Validation Study

    SciTech Connect

    Harry R. Bader; Jacynthe Guimond

    2006-03-01

    The Alaska Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Division of Mining, Land, and Water manages cross-country travel, typically associated with hydrocarbon exploration and development, on Alaska's arctic North Slope. This project is intended to provide natural resource managers with objective, quantitative data to assist decision making regarding opening of the tundra to cross-country travel. DNR designed standardized, controlled field trials, with baseline data, to investigate the relationships present between winter exploration vehicle treatments and the independent variables of ground hardness, snow depth, and snow slab thickness, as they relate to the dependent variables of active layer depth, soil moisture, and photosynthetically active radiation (a proxy for plant disturbance). Changes in the dependent variables were used as indicators of tundra disturbance. Two main tundra community types were studied: Coastal Plain (wet graminoid/moist sedge shrub) and Foothills (tussock). DNR constructed four models to address physical soil properties: two models for each main community type, one predicting change in depth of active layer and a second predicting change in soil moisture. DNR also investigated the limited potential management utility in using soil temperature, the amount of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) absorbed by plants, and changes in microphotography as tools for the identification of disturbance in the field. DNR operated under the assumption that changes in the abiotic factors of active layer depth and soil moisture drive alteration in tundra vegetation structure and composition. Statistically significant differences in depth of active layer, soil moisture at a 15 cm depth, soil temperature at a 15 cm depth, and the absorption of photosynthetically active radiation were found among treatment cells and among treatment types. The models were unable to thoroughly investigate the interacting role between snow depth and disturbance due to a lack

  15. Evaluation of Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) Snow Albedo Product (MCD43A) over Tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wang, Zhuosen; Schaaf, Crystal B.; Chopping, Mark J.; Strahler, Alan H.; Wang, Jindi; Roman, Miguel O.; Rocha, Adrian V.; Woodcock, Curtis E.; Shuai, Yanmin

    2012-01-01

    This study assesses the MODIS standard Bidirectional Reflectance Distribution Function (BRDF)/Albedo product, and the daily Direct Broadcast BRDF/Albedo algorithm at tundra locations under large solar zenith angles and high anisotropic diffuse illumination and multiple scattering conditions. These products generally agree with ground-based albedo measurements during the snow cover period when the Solar Zenith Angle (SZA) is less than 70deg. An integrated validation strategy, including analysis of the representativeness of the surface heterogeneity, is performed to decide whether direct comparisons between field measurements and 500- m satellite products were appropriate or if the scaling of finer spatial resolution airborne or spaceborne data was necessary. Results indicate that the Root Mean Square Errors (RMSEs) are less than 0.047 during the snow covered periods for all MCD43 albedo products at several Alaskan tundra areas. The MCD43 1- day daily albedo product is particularly well suited to capture the rapidly changing surface conditions during the spring snow melt. Results also show that a full expression of the blue sky albedo is necessary at these large SZA snow covered areas because of the effects of anisotropic diffuse illumination and multiple scattering. In tundra locations with dark residue as a result of fire, the MODIS albedo values are lower than those at the unburned site from the start of snowmelt.

  16. Deposition of ozone to tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jacob, D. J.; Fan, S.-M.; Wofsy, S. C.; Spiro, P. A.; Bakwin, P. S.; Ritter, J. A.; Browell, E. V.; Gregory, G. L.; Fitzjarrald, D. R.; Moore, K. E.

    1992-01-01

    Eddy correlation measurements of O3 deposition fluxes to tundra during the Arctic Boundary Layer Expedition (ABLE 3A) are reported. The mean O3 deposition velocity was 0.24 cm/s in the daytime and 0.12 cm/s at night. The day-to-day difference in deposition velocity was driven by both atmospheric stability and surface reactivity. The mean surface resistance to O3 deposition was 2.6 s/cm in the daytime and 3.4 s/cm at night. The relatively low surface resistance at night is attributed to light-insensitive uptake of O3 at dry upland tundra surfaces. The small day-tonight difference in surface resistance is attributed to additional stomatal uptake by wet meadow tundra plants in the daytime. The mean O3 deposition flux to the world north of 60 deg N in July-August is estimated at 8.2 x 10 exp 10 molecules/sq cm/s. Suppression of photochemical loss by small anthropogenic inputs of nitrogen oxides could have a major effect on O3 concentrations in the summertime Arctic troposphere.

  17. Deposition of ozone to tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Jacob, D.J.; Fan, S.M.; Wofsy, S.C.; Spiro, P.A.; Bakwin, P.S.; Ritter, J.A.; Browell, E.V.; Gregory, G.L.; Fitzjarrald, D.R.; Moore, K.E. NASA, Langley Research Center, Hampton, VA New York State Univ., Albany )

    1992-10-01

    Eddy correlation measurements of O3 deposition fluxes to tundra during the Arctic Boundary Layer Expedition (ABLE 3A) are reported. The mean O[sub 3] deposition velocity was 0.24 cm/s in the daytime and 0.12 cm/s at night. The day-to-day difference in deposition velocity was driven by both atmospheric stability and surface reactivity. The mean surface resistance to O[sub 3] deposition was 2.6 s/cm in the daytime and 3.4 s/cm at night. The relatively low surface resistance at night is attributed to light-insensitive uptake of O[sub 3] at dry upland tundra surfaces. The small day-tonight difference in surface resistance is attributed to additional stomatal uptake by wet meadow tundra plants in the daytime. The mean O[sub 3] deposition flux to the world north of 60 deg N in July-August is estimated at 8.2 x 10 exp 10 molecules/sq cm/s. Suppression of photochemical loss by small anthropogenic inputs of nitrogen oxides could have a major effect on O[sub 3] concentrations in the summertime Arctic troposphere. 34 refs.

  18. Phlorotannins from Alaskan seaweed inhibit carbolytic enzyme activity.

    PubMed

    Kellogg, Joshua; Grace, Mary H; Lila, Mary Ann

    2014-10-22

    Global incidence of type 2 diabetes has escalated over the past few decades, necessitating a continued search for natural sources of enzyme inhibitors to offset postprandial hyperglycemia. The objective of this study was to evaluate coastal Alaskan seaweed inhibition of α-glucosidase and α-amylase, two carbolytic enzymes involved in serum glucose regulation. Of the six species initially screened, the brown seaweeds Fucus distichus and Alaria marginata possessed the strongest inhibitory effects. F. distichus fractions were potent mixed-mode inhibitors of α-glucosidase and α-amylase, with IC50 values of 0.89 and 13.9 μg/mL, respectively; significantly more efficacious than the pharmaceutical acarbose (IC50 of 112.0 and 137.8 μg/mL, respectively). The activity of F. distichus fractions was associated with phlorotannin oligomers. Normal-phase liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (NPLC-MS) was employed to characterize individual oligomers. Accurate masses and fragmentation patterns confirmed the presence of fucophloroethol structures with degrees of polymerization from 3 to 18 monomer units. These findings suggest that coastal Alaskan seaweeds are sources of α-glucosidase and α-amylase inhibitory phlorotannins, and thus have potential to limit the release of sugar from carbohydrates and thus alleviate postprandial hyperglycemia.

  19. Modeling dynamics of circum-arctic tundra plant communities in response to climate warming and grazing pressure

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Q.; Epstein, H. E.; Walker, D. A.; Forbes, B. C.; Vors, L. S.

    2011-12-01

    The Arctic is a complex system with strong interconnectedness among system components. Understanding the responses of the arctic tundra biome to a changing climate requires knowledge of the complex interactions among climate, soils, and the biological system. In this study, we investigate the individual and interactive effects of projected climate change and reindeer/caribou grazing across a variety of climate zones and soil nutrient levels on tundra plant community dynamics using an arctic vegetation model - ArcVeg. Our research questions include: 1) How does soil nutrient availability affect tundra vegetation responses to projected climate warming? 2) How does grazing affect tundra vegetation responses? 3) How do interactions of soil nutrients, climate warming and grazing affect tundra vegetation? We based our simulations on A1B scenario temperature data from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), soil organic nitrogen data from Terrestrial Ecosystem Model (TEM) simulations and grazing pressure derived from reindeer/caribou population data from the CircumArctic Rangifer Monitoring and Assessment Network (CARMA). We found that in general tundra communities responded to warming with increased plant biomass, but the magnitude of the response is affected by the bioclimate zones, warming magnitude, available soil nutrients and grazing pressures. Regions with greater soil organic nitrogen responded to warming with greater biomass increase, Low Arctic tundra tended to have greater biomass increase than High Arctic tundra due to greater shrub abundance. However, such responses are mitigated by grazing. Regions with greater reindeer population and thus greater grazing intensity tended to have stronger negative effects on plant responses to warming than regions with less grazing. For example, in Subzone D, total biomass and NPP increases due to warming were about 71% and 43% in an Alaskan low grazing-intensity region, but 63% and 36% in a northwestern Canada

  20. Social indicators study of Alaskan Coastal Villages I. Key informant summaries. Volume 1. Schedule a regions (North Slope, Nana, Calista, Aleutian-Pribilof). Social and economic studies. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Brelsford, T.; Fienup-Riordan, A.; Jorgensen, J.; McNabb, S.; Petrivelli, P.

    1992-08-01

    The focus of this report is on Alaska Natives--Inupiaq and Yupik Eskimos, Athabascans, and Aleuts--for two important reasons: (1) Alaska Natives are numerically dominant populations in rural areas closest to potential offshore oil development sites and (2) their economic adjustments are most vulnerable to potential impacts from such development. This report is divided into Schedules A, B, and C. Comprising Schedules A and B are the study areas originally identified by Minerals Management Service for this study (North Slope, NANA, Bering Straits, Calista, Bristol Bay, Aleutian-Pribilof Islands, and Kodiak regions). Schedule C is comprised of communities that were added subsequent to the Exxon Valdez oil spill of 1989 in the Prince William Sound and Cook Inlet regions. One aim of this study was to document the attitudes and belief systems or ideologies about quality of life and well-being in the coastal, rural portions of Alaska.

  1. The temperature response of methane emission in Arctic wet sedge tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lim, Edward; Zona, Donatella

    2015-04-01

    low and did not change significantly with temperature, indicating that CH4 emission from drier Arctic tundra soils is not particularly temperature sensitive. Average CH4 emission from 'wet' cores increased with increasing temperature between -5°C and 20°C. Interestingly, continued increases in average CH4 emission as chamber temperature decreased (20°C to 0°C) were observed. Importantly, when chamber temperature was increased (-5°C to 20°C), average CH4 emission in the 'wet' cores was consistently lower at the end of each week-long temperature stage compared to at the start. This suggests that the response of CH4 emission to climate warming might acclimate. Overall, this study is critical for refining the temperature sensitivity of Arctic tundra CH4 emission, and thus improving model predictions of the response of CH4 fluxes to climate change. References McGuire, AD; Christensen, TR; Hayes, D. et al. (2012). An assessment of the carbon balance of Arctic tundra: comparisons among observations, process models, and atmospheric inversions. Biogeosciences. Vol.9, p.3185-3204, doi:10.5194/bg-9-3185-2012. Zona, D; Oechel, WC; Kochendorfer, J. et al. (2009). Methane fluxes during the initiation of a large-scale water table manipulation experiment in the Alaskan Arctic tundra. Global Biogeochemical Cycles. Vol.23, GB2013, doi:10.1029/2009GB003487.

  2. Effects of temperature, moisture, and permafrost thaw on ecosystem carbon exchange in Alaskan tundra.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Natali, S.; Schuur, E. A.; Webb, E.

    2012-12-01

    Carbon has been accumulating in northern high latitude ecosystems for thousands of years because cold and moist conditions have protected soil organic matter from microbial decomposition. Over the past several decades, warming surface air temperatures have been accompanied by thawing of the perennially frozen permafrost layer where much of the accumulated carbon is stored. In addition to its role in carbon storage, permafrost regulates surface hydrology by restricting vertical water flow, thereby maintaining a water table that remains close to the ground surface. In the absence of the permafrost layer, enhanced water drainage will result in increased water table depth and decreased soil moisture. The biological availability of permafrost carbon may increase in a warmer and drier soil environment, as is expected for the region of this study. To determine the effects of warming temperatures and changes in soil moisture on ecosystem carbon exchange, we established a water table drawdown experiment within the footprint of the Carbon in Permafrost Experimental Heating Research (CiPEHR) project, an ecosystem warming experiment in Interior Alaska that warms air and soil temperatures and degrades permafrost. Here we present ecosystem carbon balance results from combined warming and moisture manipulation treatments at the CiPEHR project. Soil warming increased soil temperature by 2-3o C and resulted in a 10% increase in growing season thaw depth. Surprisingly, the additional 2 kg of thawed soil C m-2 in the warmed plots did not increase net growing season CO2 loss from this ecosystem. In contrast, soil warming and permafrost thaw increased growing season CO2 uptake, which was a result of both higher net primary productivity and an inhibition of microbial decomposition by soil saturation at the base of the active layer. The drying treatment (i.e., water table drawdown) decreased soil moisture by 25%, which led to an increase in ecosystem respiration and decrease in net carbon uptake during the growing season. This decline in growing season carbon uptake shifted this ecosystem from carbon neutral to a carbon source on an annual basis. These results highlight the importance of examining whole system changes that can be expected with warming temperatures in permafrost ecosystems. Determining the effects of thawing-mediated changes in soil moisture on ecosystem carbon exchange is essential for quantifying biological feedbacks from permafrost ecosystems to global climate.

  3. Consumption of atmospheric methane by tundra soils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whalen, S. C.; Reeburgh, W. S.

    1990-01-01

    The results of field and laboratory experiments on methane consumption by tundra soils are reported. For methane concentrations ranging from below to well above ambient, moist soils are found to consume methane rapidly; in nonwaterlogged soils, equilibration with atmospheric methane is fast relative to microbial oxidation. It is concluded that lowering of the water table in tundra as a resulting from a warmer, drier climate will decrease methane fluxes and could cause these areas to provide negative feedback for atmospheric methane.

  4. Resistance and resilience of tundra plant communities to disturbance by winter seismic vehicles

    SciTech Connect

    Felix, N.A.; Raynolds, M.K.; Jorgenson, J.C.; DuBois, K.E. )

    1992-02-01

    Effects of winter seismic exploration on arctic tundra were evaluated on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, four to five growing seasons after disturbance. Plant cover, active layer depths, and track depression were measured at plots representing major tundra plant communities and different levels of initial disturbance. Results are compared with the initial effects reported earlier. Little resilience was seen in any vegetation type, with no clearly decreasing trends in community dissimilarity. Active layer depths remained greater on plots in all nonriparian vegetation types, and most plots still had visible trails. Decreases in plant cover persisted on most plots, although a few species showed recovery or increases in cover above predisturbance level. Moist sedge-shrub tundra and dryas terraces had the largest community dissimilarities initially, showing the least resistance to high levels of winter vehicle disturbance. Community dissimilarity continued to increase for five seasons in moist sedge-shrub tundra, with species composition changing to higher sedge cover and lower shrub cover. The resilience amplitude may have been exceeded on four plots which had significant track depression.

  5. Polygonal tundra geomorphological change in response to warming alters future CO2 and CH4 flux on the Barrow Peninsula.

    PubMed

    Lara, Mark J; McGuire, A David; Euskirchen, Eugenie S; Tweedie, Craig E; Hinkel, Kenneth M; Skurikhin, Alexei N; Romanovsky, Vladimir E; Grosse, Guido; Bolton, W Robert; Genet, Helene

    2015-04-01

    The landscape of the Barrow Peninsula in northern Alaska is thought to have formed over centuries to millennia, and is now dominated by ice-wedge polygonal tundra that spans drained thaw-lake basins and interstitial tundra. In nearby tundra regions, studies have identified a rapid increase in thermokarst formation (i.e., pits) over recent decades in response to climate warming, facilitating changes in polygonal tundra geomorphology. We assessed the future impact of 100 years of tundra geomorphic change on peak growing season carbon exchange in response to: (i) landscape succession associated with the thaw-lake cycle; and (ii) low, moderate, and extreme scenarios of thermokarst pit formation (10%, 30%, and 50%) reported for Alaskan arctic tundra sites. We developed a 30 × 30 m resolution tundra geomorphology map (overall accuracy:75%; Kappa:0.69) for our ~1800 km² study area composed of ten classes; drained slope, high center polygon, flat-center polygon, low center polygon, coalescent low center polygon, polygon trough, meadow, ponds, rivers, and lakes, to determine their spatial distribution across the Barrow Peninsula. Land-atmosphere CO2 and CH4 flux data were collected for the summers of 2006-2010 at eighty-two sites near Barrow, across the mapped classes. The developed geomorphic map was used for the regional assessment of carbon flux. Results indicate (i) at present during peak growing season on the Barrow Peninsula, CO2 uptake occurs at -902.3 10(6) gC-CO2 day(-1) (uncertainty using 95% CI is between -438.3 and -1366 10(6) gC-CO2 day(-1)) and CH4 flux at 28.9 10(6) gC-CH4 day(-1) (uncertainty using 95% CI is between 12.9 and 44.9 10(6) gC-CH4 day(-1)), (ii) one century of future landscape change associated with the thaw-lake cycle only slightly alter CO2 and CH4 exchange, while (iii) moderate increases in thermokarst pits would strengthen both CO2 uptake (-166.9 10(6) gC-CO2 day(-1)) and CH4 flux (2.8 10(6) gC-CH4 day(-1)) with geomorphic change from low

  6. Polygonal tundra geomorphological change in response to warming alters future CO2 and CH4 flux on the Barrow Peninsula.

    PubMed

    Lara, Mark J; McGuire, A David; Euskirchen, Eugenie S; Tweedie, Craig E; Hinkel, Kenneth M; Skurikhin, Alexei N; Romanovsky, Vladimir E; Grosse, Guido; Bolton, W Robert; Genet, Helene

    2015-04-01

    The landscape of the Barrow Peninsula in northern Alaska is thought to have formed over centuries to millennia, and is now dominated by ice-wedge polygonal tundra that spans drained thaw-lake basins and interstitial tundra. In nearby tundra regions, studies have identified a rapid increase in thermokarst formation (i.e., pits) over recent decades in response to climate warming, facilitating changes in polygonal tundra geomorphology. We assessed the future impact of 100 years of tundra geomorphic change on peak growing season carbon exchange in response to: (i) landscape succession associated with the thaw-lake cycle; and (ii) low, moderate, and extreme scenarios of thermokarst pit formation (10%, 30%, and 50%) reported for Alaskan arctic tundra sites. We developed a 30 × 30 m resolution tundra geomorphology map (overall accuracy:75%; Kappa:0.69) for our ~1800 km² study area composed of ten classes; drained slope, high center polygon, flat-center polygon, low center polygon, coalescent low center polygon, polygon trough, meadow, ponds, rivers, and lakes, to determine their spatial distribution across the Barrow Peninsula. Land-atmosphere CO2 and CH4 flux data were collected for the summers of 2006-2010 at eighty-two sites near Barrow, across the mapped classes. The developed geomorphic map was used for the regional assessment of carbon flux. Results indicate (i) at present during peak growing season on the Barrow Peninsula, CO2 uptake occurs at -902.3 10(6) gC-CO2 day(-1) (uncertainty using 95% CI is between -438.3 and -1366 10(6) gC-CO2 day(-1)) and CH4 flux at 28.9 10(6) gC-CH4 day(-1) (uncertainty using 95% CI is between 12.9 and 44.9 10(6) gC-CH4 day(-1)), (ii) one century of future landscape change associated with the thaw-lake cycle only slightly alter CO2 and CH4 exchange, while (iii) moderate increases in thermokarst pits would strengthen both CO2 uptake (-166.9 10(6) gC-CO2 day(-1)) and CH4 flux (2.8 10(6) gC-CH4 day(-1)) with geomorphic change from low

  7. Responses of arctic tundra to experimental and observed changes in climate

    SciTech Connect

    Chapin, F.S. III; Shaver, G.R.; Giblin, A.E.; Nadelhoffer, K.J.; Laundre, J.A.

    1995-04-01

    The authors manipulated light, temperature, and nutrients in moist tussock tundra in Alaska to determine how global changes might affect community and ecosystem processes. Some of these manipulations altered nutrient availability, growth-form composition, net primary production, and species richness in less than a decade, indicating arctic vegetation at this site is sensitive to climatic change. In general, short-term (3-yr) responses were poor predictors of longer term (9-yr) changes in community composition. The longer term responses showed closer correspondence to patterns of vegetation distribution along environmental gradients. Nitrogen and phosphorus availability tended to increase with elevated temperature and in response to light attenuation. Nutrient addition increased biomass and production of deciduous shrubs but reduced growth of evergreen shrubs and nonvascular plants. Light attenuation reduced biomass of all growth forms. Elevated temperature enhanced shrub production but reduced production of nonvascular plants. The contrasting responses to temperature increase and to nutrient addition by different growth forms {open_quotes}canceled out{close_quotes} at the ecosystem level, buffering changes in ecosystem characteristics such as biomass, production, and nutrient uptake. The major effect of elevated temperature was to speed plant response to changes in soil resources and, in long term (9 yr), to increase nutrient availability. Species richness was reduced 30-50% by temperature and nutrient treatments. Declines in diversity occurred disproportionately in forbs and in mosses. During our 9-yr study (the warmest decade on record in the region), biomass of one dominant tundra species unexpectedly changed in control plots in the direction predicted by our experiments and by Holocene pollen records. This suggests that regional climatic warming may already be altering the species composition of Alaskan arctic tundra. 73 refs., 9 figs., 4 tabs.

  8. Cardiovascular Deaths among Alaskan Natives, 1980-86.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Middaugh, John P.

    1990-01-01

    Analyzes death certificate data to discover the number of deaths of Alaskan natives caused by cardiovascular disease. Rates from cardiovascular diseases and atherosclerosis from 1980-86 among Alaskan natives were lower than rates among other Alaskans, while death rates from other causes were higher. Discusses the possible impact of diet. (JS)

  9. 7 CFR 1780.49 - Rural or Native Alaskan villages.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ...) Rural or Native Alaskan village. A rural or Native Alaskan community which meets the definition of a... waterborne communicable disease have been documented; or (ii) No community-wide water and sewer system exists... 7 Agriculture 12 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Rural or Native Alaskan villages. 1780.49...

  10. 7 CFR 1780.49 - Rural or Native Alaskan villages.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ...) Rural or Native Alaskan village. A rural or Native Alaskan community which meets the definition of a... waterborne communicable disease have been documented; or (ii) No community-wide water and sewer system exists... 7 Agriculture 12 2014-01-01 2013-01-01 true Rural or Native Alaskan villages. 1780.49 Section...

  11. 7 CFR 1780.49 - Rural or Native Alaskan villages.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ...) Rural or Native Alaskan village. A rural or Native Alaskan community which meets the definition of a... waterborne communicable disease have been documented; or (ii) No community-wide water and sewer system exists... 7 Agriculture 12 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Rural or Native Alaskan villages. 1780.49...

  12. Multi-decadal changes in tundra environments and ecosystems: synthesis of the International Polar Year-Back to the Future project (IPY-BTF).

    PubMed

    Callaghan, Terry V; Tweedie, Craig E; Akerman, Jonas; Andrews, Christopher; Bergstedt, Johan; Butler, Malcolm G; Christensen, Torben R; Cooley, Dorothy; Dahlberg, Ulrika; Danby, Ryan K; Daniëls, Fred J A; de Molenaar, Johannes G; Dick, Jan; Mortensen, Christian Ebbe; Ebert-May, Diane; Emanuelsson, Urban; Eriksson, Håkan; Hedenås, Henrik; Henry H R, Greg; Hik, David S; Hobbie, John E; Jantze, Elin J; Jaspers, Cornelia; Johansson, Cecilia; Johansson, Margareta; Johnson, David R; Johnstone, Jill F; Jonasson, Christer; Kennedy, Catherine; Kenney, Alice J; Keuper, Frida; Koh, Saewan; Krebs, Charles J; Lantuit, Hugues; Lara, Mark J; Lin, David; Lougheed, Vanessa L; Madsen, Jesper; Matveyeva, Nadya; Mcewen, Daniel C; Myers-Smith, Isla H; Narozhniy, Yuriy K; Olsson, Håkan; Pohjola, Veijo A; Price, Larry W; Rigét, Frank; Rundqvist, Sara; Sandström, Anneli; Tamstorf, Mikkel; Van Bogaert, Rik; Villarreal, Sandra; Webber, Patrick J; Zemtsov, Valeriy A

    2011-09-01

    Understanding the responses of tundra systems to global change has global implications. Most tundra regions lack sustained environmental monitoring and one of the only ways to document multi-decadal change is to resample historic research sites. The International Polar Year (IPY) provided a unique opportunity for such research through the Back to the Future (BTF) project (IPY project #512). This article synthesizes the results from 13 papers within this Ambio Special Issue. Abiotic changes include glacial recession in the Altai Mountains, Russia; increased snow depth and hardness, permafrost warming, and increased growing season length in sub-arctic Sweden; drying of ponds in Greenland; increased nutrient availability in Alaskan tundra ponds, and warming at most locations studied. Biotic changes ranged from relatively minor plant community change at two sites in Greenland to moderate change in the Yukon, and to dramatic increases in shrub and tree density on Herschel Island, and in subarctic Sweden. The population of geese tripled at one site in northeast Greenland where biomass in non-grazed plots doubled. A model parameterized using results from a BTF study forecasts substantial declines in all snowbeds and increases in shrub tundra on Niwot Ridge, Colorado over the next century. In general, results support and provide improved capacities for validating experimental manipulation, remote sensing, and modeling studies.

  13. Multi-decadal changes in tundra environments and ecosystems: synthesis of the International Polar Year-Back to the Future project (IPY-BTF).

    PubMed

    Callaghan, Terry V; Tweedie, Craig E; Akerman, Jonas; Andrews, Christopher; Bergstedt, Johan; Butler, Malcolm G; Christensen, Torben R; Cooley, Dorothy; Dahlberg, Ulrika; Danby, Ryan K; Daniëls, Fred J A; de Molenaar, Johannes G; Dick, Jan; Mortensen, Christian Ebbe; Ebert-May, Diane; Emanuelsson, Urban; Eriksson, Håkan; Hedenås, Henrik; Henry H R, Greg; Hik, David S; Hobbie, John E; Jantze, Elin J; Jaspers, Cornelia; Johansson, Cecilia; Johansson, Margareta; Johnson, David R; Johnstone, Jill F; Jonasson, Christer; Kennedy, Catherine; Kenney, Alice J; Keuper, Frida; Koh, Saewan; Krebs, Charles J; Lantuit, Hugues; Lara, Mark J; Lin, David; Lougheed, Vanessa L; Madsen, Jesper; Matveyeva, Nadya; Mcewen, Daniel C; Myers-Smith, Isla H; Narozhniy, Yuriy K; Olsson, Håkan; Pohjola, Veijo A; Price, Larry W; Rigét, Frank; Rundqvist, Sara; Sandström, Anneli; Tamstorf, Mikkel; Van Bogaert, Rik; Villarreal, Sandra; Webber, Patrick J; Zemtsov, Valeriy A

    2011-09-01

    Understanding the responses of tundra systems to global change has global implications. Most tundra regions lack sustained environmental monitoring and one of the only ways to document multi-decadal change is to resample historic research sites. The International Polar Year (IPY) provided a unique opportunity for such research through the Back to the Future (BTF) project (IPY project #512). This article synthesizes the results from 13 papers within this Ambio Special Issue. Abiotic changes include glacial recession in the Altai Mountains, Russia; increased snow depth and hardness, permafrost warming, and increased growing season length in sub-arctic Sweden; drying of ponds in Greenland; increased nutrient availability in Alaskan tundra ponds, and warming at most locations studied. Biotic changes ranged from relatively minor plant community change at two sites in Greenland to moderate change in the Yukon, and to dramatic increases in shrub and tree density on Herschel Island, and in subarctic Sweden. The population of geese tripled at one site in northeast Greenland where biomass in non-grazed plots doubled. A model parameterized using results from a BTF study forecasts substantial declines in all snowbeds and increases in shrub tundra on Niwot Ridge, Colorado over the next century. In general, results support and provide improved capacities for validating experimental manipulation, remote sensing, and modeling studies. PMID:21954732

  14. Alaska tundra vegetation trends and their links to the large-scale climate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bieniek, P. A.; Bhatt, U. S.; Walker, D. A.; Raynolds, M. K.; Comiso, J. C.

    2011-12-01

    The arctic Normalized Vegetation Index (NDVI) data set (a measure of vegetation photosynthetic capacity) has been used to document coherent temporal relationships between near-coastal sea ice, summer tundra land surface temperatures, and vegetation productivity throughout the Arctic (Bhatt et al. 2010). Land warming over North America has displayed larger trends (+30%) when compared to Eurasia (+16%) since 1982. In the tundra of northern Alaska the greatest change was found in absolute maximum NDVI along the Beaufort Sea coast (+14%). In contrast, tundra areas in southwest Alaska along the Bering Sea have seen a decline (-4%). Greenup date in these regions has been occurring as much as 1-4 days earlier per decade, but trends are mixed. Winter snow water equivalent (SWE) has only increased slightly (+0.1 mm/yr) in the Arctic region of Alaska since 1987 (R. Muskett, personal communication). These findings suggest that there have been changes in the seasonal climate in Alaska during the NDVI record. The tundra trends are further investigated by evaluating remotely sensed sea ice, surface air temperature, SWE, daily snow cover, and NDVI3g. While the snow data has a relatively short record (1999-2010), notable trends can be observed in snow melt, occurring as much 15 days earlier per decade in northern Alaska. Unfortunately, other snow data sets have been found to be problematic and could not be used to extend our analysis. This highlights the need for a long-term pan-arctic snow data set that is suitable for climate analysis. Possible climate drivers are also investigated. Results show that the summer tundra, in terms of NDVI and summer warmth index (SWI), has few direct links with the large-scale climate. However, the sea ice concentration along the coast of the tundra regions has strong preseason links to the large-scale climate. This suggests that the large-scale climate influences the sea ice concentration which then affects the NDVI and SWI. Three tundra regions

  15. Climate-Driven Effects of Fire on Winter Habitat for Caribou in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic

    PubMed Central

    Gustine, David D.; Brinkman, Todd J.; Lindgren, Michael A.; Schmidt, Jennifer I.; Rupp, T. Scott; Adams, Layne G.

    2014-01-01

    Climatic warming has direct implications for fire-dominated disturbance patterns in northern ecosystems. A transforming wildfire regime is altering plant composition and successional patterns, thus affecting the distribution and potentially the abundance of large herbivores. Caribou (Rangifer tarandus) are an important subsistence resource for communities throughout the north and a species that depends on terrestrial lichen in late-successional forests and tundra systems. Projected increases in area burned and reductions in stand ages may reduce lichen availability within caribou winter ranges. Sufficient reductions in lichen abundance could alter the capacity of these areas to support caribou populations. To assess the potential role of a changing fire regime on winter habitat for caribou, we used a simulation modeling platform, two global circulation models (GCMs), and a moderate emissions scenario to project annual fire characteristics and the resulting abundance of lichen-producing vegetation types (i.e., spruce forests and tundra >60 years old) across a modeling domain that encompassed the winter ranges of the Central Arctic and Porcupine caribou herds in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic. Fires were less numerous and smaller in tundra compared to spruce habitats throughout the 90-year projection for both GCMs. Given the more likely climate trajectory, we projected that the Porcupine caribou herd, which winters primarily in the boreal forest, could be expected to experience a greater reduction in lichen-producing winter habitats (−21%) than the Central Arctic herd that wintered primarily in the arctic tundra (−11%). Our results suggest that caribou herds wintering in boreal forest will undergo fire-driven reductions in lichen-producing habitats that will, at a minimum, alter their distribution. Range shifts of caribou resulting from fire-driven changes to winter habitat may diminish access to caribou for rural communities that reside in fire-prone areas. PMID

  16. Climate-driven effects of fire on winter habitat for caribou in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic.

    PubMed

    Gustine, David D; Brinkman, Todd J; Lindgren, Michael A; Schmidt, Jennifer I; Rupp, T Scott; Adams, Layne G

    2014-01-01

    Climatic warming has direct implications for fire-dominated disturbance patterns in northern ecosystems. A transforming wildfire regime is altering plant composition and successional patterns, thus affecting the distribution and potentially the abundance of large herbivores. Caribou (Rangifer tarandus) are an important subsistence resource for communities throughout the north and a species that depends on terrestrial lichen in late-successional forests and tundra systems. Projected increases in area burned and reductions in stand ages may reduce lichen availability within caribou winter ranges. Sufficient reductions in lichen abundance could alter the capacity of these areas to support caribou populations. To assess the potential role of a changing fire regime on winter habitat for caribou, we used a simulation modeling platform, two global circulation models (GCMs), and a moderate emissions scenario to project annual fire characteristics and the resulting abundance of lichen-producing vegetation types (i.e., spruce forests and tundra >60 years old) across a modeling domain that encompassed the winter ranges of the Central Arctic and Porcupine caribou herds in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic. Fires were less numerous and smaller in tundra compared to spruce habitats throughout the 90-year projection for both GCMs. Given the more likely climate trajectory, we projected that the Porcupine caribou herd, which winters primarily in the boreal forest, could be expected to experience a greater reduction in lichen-producing winter habitats (-21%) than the Central Arctic herd that wintered primarily in the arctic tundra (-11%). Our results suggest that caribou herds wintering in boreal forest will undergo fire-driven reductions in lichen-producing habitats that will, at a minimum, alter their distribution. Range shifts of caribou resulting from fire-driven changes to winter habitat may diminish access to caribou for rural communities that reside in fire-prone areas.

  17. Climate-driven effects of fire on winter habitat for caribou in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gustine, David D.; Brinkman, Todd J.; Lindgren, Michael A.; Schmidt, Jennifer I.; Rupp, T. Scott; Adams, Layne G.

    2014-01-01

    Climatic warming has direct implications for fire-dominated disturbance patterns in northern ecosystems. A transforming wildfire regime is altering plant composition and successional patterns, thus affecting the distribution and potentially the abundance of large herbivores. Caribou (Rangifer tarandus) are an important subsistence resource for communities throughout the north and a species that depends on terrestrial lichen in late-successional forests and tundra systems. Projected increases in area burned and reductions in stand ages may reduce lichen availability within caribou winter ranges. Sufficient reductions in lichen abundance could alter the capacity of these areas to support caribou populations. To assess the potential role of a changing fire regime on winter habitat for caribou, we used a simulation modeling platform, two global circulation models (GCMs), and a moderate emissions scenario to project annual fire characteristics and the resulting abundance of lichen-producing vegetation types (i.e., spruce forests and tundra >60 years old) across a modeling domain that encompassed the winter ranges of the Central Arctic and Porcupine caribou herds in the Alaskan-Yukon Arctic. Fires were less numerous and smaller in tundra compared to spruce habitats throughout the 90-year projection for both GCMs. Given the more likely climate trajectory, we projected that the Porcupine caribou herd, which winters primarily in the boreal forest, could be expected to experience a greater reduction in lichen-producing winter habitats (−21%) than the Central Arctic herd that wintered primarily in the arctic tundra (−11%). Our results suggest that caribou herds wintering in boreal forest will undergo fire-driven reductions in lichen-producing habitats that will, at a minimum, alter their distribution. Range shifts of caribou resulting from fire-driven changes to winter habitat may diminish access to caribou for rural communities that reside in fire-prone areas.

  18. Mortality in tundra swans Cygnus columbianus

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bartonek, J.C.; Serie, J.R.; Converse, K.A.

    1991-01-01

    Our paper identifies and examines the significance of hunting and non-hunting mortality affecting the Eastern Population (EP) and Western Population (WP) (see Serie & Bartonek 1991a) of Tundra Swans. Sport hunting (Serie & Bartonek 1991b), native subsistence hunting (Copp 1989, Stewart & Bernier 1989), malicious shooting (McKelvey & MacNeill 1981), avian cholera (Friend et al. 1981, Schroeder 1983), ecto- and endoparasites (Trauger & Bartonek 1977, Woebeser 1981), lead poisoning (Sherwood 1960, Friend et al. 1981), collision (Willard 1978), and drowning (Miller et al. 1986) have been documented as being direct or indirect causes of mortality in fledged Tundra Swans; but their relative importance remains unknown.

  19. Gaps in Data and Modeling Tools for Understanding Fire and Fire Effects in Tundra Ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    French, N. H.; Miller, M. E.; Loboda, T. V.; Jenkins, L. K.; Bourgeau-Chavez, L. L.; Suiter, A.; Hawkins, S. M.

    2013-12-01

    capability for accurate estimation of fire emissions in this region. Initial evaluation of Landsat for tundra fire characterization (Loboda et al. 2013) and successful use of the rich archive of Synthetic Aperture Radar imagery for many fire-disturbed sites in the region will be additional topics covered in this poster presentation. References: Breiman, L. 2001. Random forests. Machine Learning, 45:5-32. French, N.H.F., W.J. de Groot, L.K. Jenkins, B.. Rogers, et al. 2011. Model comparisons for estimating carbon emissions from North American wildland fire. J. Geophys. Res. 116:G00K05, doi:10.1029/2010JG001469. Loboda, T L, N H F French, C. Hight-Harf, L. Jenkins, M.E. Miller. 2013. Mapping fire extent and burn severity in Alaskan tussock tundra: An analysis of the spectral response of tundra vegetation to wildland fire. Remote Sens. Enviro. 134:194-209.

  20. Helping Kids Succeed--Alaskan Style.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Association of Alaska School Boards, Juneau.

    The purpose of this book is to serve as a tool for individuals helping to make Alaskan communities places where youth can grow up to be strong, capable, and caring. The book is built around the Search Institute's Youth Developmental Assets Framework, which is comprised of the key building blocks in youth development. The book notes 40 assets that…

  1. Climate Variations and Alaska Tundra Vegetation Productivity Declines in Spring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhatt, U. S.; Walker, D. A.; Bieniek, P.; Raynolds, M. K.; Epstein, H. E.; Comiso, J. C.; Pinzon, J. E.; Tucker, C. J.

    2015-12-01

    lders, M Steele, J Zhang, and W Ermold, 2015: Climate drivers of changing seasonality of Alaska coastal tundra vegetation productivity, (conditionally accepted) Earth Interactions.

  2. Alaskan North Slope petroleum systems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Magoon, L.B.; Lillis, P.G.; Bird, K.J.; Lampe, C.; Peters, K.E.

    2003-01-01

    Six North Slope petroleum systems are identified, described, and mapped using oil-to-oil and oil-to-source rock correlations, pods of active source rock, and overburden rock packages. To map these systems, we assumed that: a) petroleum source rocks contain 3.2 wt. % organic carbon (TOC); b) immature oil-prone source rocks have hydrogen indices (HI) >300 (mg HC/gm TOC); c) the top and bottom of the petroleum (oil plus gas) window occur at vitrinite reflectance values of 0.6 and 1.0% Ro, respectively; and d) most hydrocarbons are expelled within the petroleum window. The six petroleum systems we have identified and mapped are: a) a southern system involving the Kuna-Lisburne source rock unit that was active during the Late Jurassic and Early Cretaceous; b) two western systems involving source rock in the Kingak-Blankenship, and GRZ-lower Torok source rock units that were active during the Albian; and c) three eastern systems involving the Shublik-Otuk, Hue Shale and Canning source rock units that were active during the Cenozoic. The GRZ-lower Torok in the west is correlative with the Hue Shale to the east. Four overburden rock packages controlled the time of expulsion and gross geometry of migration paths: a) a southern package of Early Cretaceous and older rocks structurally-thickened by early Brooks Range thrusting; b) a western package of Early Cretaceous rocks that filled the western part of the foreland basin; c) an eastern package of Late Cretaceous and Paleogene rocks that filled the eastern part of the foreland basin; and d) an offshore deltaic package of Neogene rocks deposited by the Colville, Canning, and Mackenzie rivers. This petroleum system poster is part of a series of Northern Alaska posters on modeling. The poster in this session by Saltus and Bird present gridded maps for the greater Northern Alaskan onshore and offshore that are used in the 3D modeling poster by Lampe and others. Posters on source rock units are by Keller and Bird as well as

  3. Methane flux time series for tundra environments

    SciTech Connect

    Whalen, S.C.; Reeburgh, W.E. )

    1988-12-01

    Seasonal measurements of net methane flux were made at permanent sites representing important components of arctic tundra. The sites include Eriophorum tussocks, intertussock depressions, moss-covered areas, and Carex stands. Methane fluxes showed high diel, seasonal, intra site, and between site variability. Eriophorum tussocks and Carex dominated methane release to the atmosphere, with mean annual net methane fluxes of 8.05 + or{minus}2.50 g CH{sub 4}/sq m and 4.88 + or{minus}0.73 g CH{sub 4}/sq m, respectively. Methane fluxes form the moss sites and intertussock depressions were much lower. Over 90% of the mean annual methane flux from the Eriophorum, intertussock depressions, and Carex sites occurred between thaw and freeze-up. Some 40% of the mean annual methane flux from the moss sites occurred during winter. Composite methane fluxes for tussock tundra and Carex-dominated wet meadow tundra environments were produced by weighting measured component fluxes according to areal coverage. Tussock and wet meadow tundra account for an estimated global methane emission of 19-33 Tg/yr. 39 refs., 7 figs., 2 tabs.

  4. A pleistocene sand sea on the Alaskan arctic coastal plain

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Carter, L.D.

    1981-01-01

    A ridge and thermokarst-basin landscape that is strikingly portrayed in Landsat winter imagery consists of large Pleistocene dunes that have been modified by younger eolian activity and thermokarst processes. This is the most extensive area of large stabilized dunes yet reported in the North American Arctic; the landscape is of particular interest because it has been proposed as a first-order analogfor martian fretted terrain. Recognition ofthe large dunes permits a new interpretation for linear and curvilinear trends visible in Landsat summer imagery.

  5. A Pleistocene Sand Sea on the Alaskan Arctic Coastal Plain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carter, L. David

    1981-01-01

    A ridge and thermokarst-basin landscape that is strikingly portrayed in Landsat winter imagery consists of large Pleistocene dunes that have been modified by younger eolian activity and thermokarst processes. This is the most extensive area of large stabilized dunes yet reported in the North American Arctic; the landscape is of particular interest because it has been proposed as a first-order analog for martian fretted terrain. Recognition of the large dunes permits a new interpretation for linear and curvilinear trends visible in Landsat summer imagery.

  6. Two mechanisms of aquatic and terrestrial habitat change along an Alaskan Arctic coastline

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Arp, Christopher D.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Schmutz, Joel A.; Urban, Frank E.; Jorgenson, M. Torre

    2010-01-01

    Arctic habitats at the interface between land and sea are particularly vulnerable to climate change. The northern Teshekpuk Lake Special Area (N-TLSA), a coastal plain ecosystem along the Beaufort Sea in northern Alaska, provides habitat for migratory waterbirds, caribou, and potentially, denning polar bears. The 60-km coastline of N-TLSA is experiencing increasing rates of coastline erosion and storm surge flooding far inland resulting in lake drainage and conversion of freshwater lakes to estuaries. These physical mechanisms are affecting upland tundra as well. To better understand how these processes are affecting habitat, we analyzed long-term observational records coupled with recent short-term monitoring. Nearly the entire coastline has accelerating rates of erosion ranging from 6 m/year from 1955 to 1979 and most recently peaking at 17 m/year from 2007 to 2009, yet an intensive monitoring site along a higher bluff (3–6 masl) suggested high interannual variability. The frequency and magnitude of storm events appears to be increasing along this coastline and these patterns correspond to a greater number of lake tapping and flooding events since 2000. For the entire N-TLSA, we estimate that 6% of the landscape consists of salt-burned tundra, while 41% is prone to storm surge flooding. This offset may indicate the relative frequency of low-magnitude flood events along the coastal fringe. Monitoring of coastline lakes confirms that moderate westerly storms create extensive flooding, while easterly storms have negligible effects on lakes and low-lying tundra. This study of two interacting physical mechanisms, coastal erosion and storm surge flooding, provides an important example of the complexities and data needs for predicting habitat change and biological responses along Arctic land–ocean interfaces.

  7. Long-term recovery patterns of arctic tundra after winter seismic exploration.

    PubMed

    Jorgenson, Janet C; Ver Hoef, Jay M; Jorgenson, M T

    2010-01-01

    In response to the increasing global demand for energy, oil exploration and development are expanding into frontier areas of the Arctic, where slow-growing tundra vegetation and the underlying permafrost soils are very sensitive to disturbance. The creation of vehicle trails on the tundra from seismic exploration for oil has accelerated in the past decade, and the cumulative impact represents a geographic footprint that covers a greater extent of Alaska's North Slope tundra than all other direct human impacts combined. Seismic exploration for oil and gas was conducted on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, USA, in the winters of 1984 and 1985. This study documents recovery of vegetation and permafrost soils over a two-decade period after vehicle traffic on snow-covered tundra. Paired permanent vegetation plots (disturbed vs. reference) were monitored six times from 1984 to 2002. Data were collected on percent vegetative cover by plant species and on soil and ground ice characteristics. We developed Bayesian hierarchical models, with temporally and spatially autocorrelated errors, to analyze the effects of vegetation type and initial disturbance levels on recovery patterns of the different plant growth forms as well as soil thaw depth. Plant community composition was altered on the trails by species-specific responses to initial disturbance and subsequent changes in substrate. Long-term changes included increased cover of graminoids and decreased cover of evergreen shrubs and mosses. Trails with low levels of initial disturbance usually improved well over time, whereas those with medium to high levels of initial disturbance recovered slowly. Trails on ice-poor, gravel substrates of riparian areas recovered better than those on ice-rich loamy soils of the uplands, even after severe initial damage. Recovery to pre-disturbance communities was not possible where trail subsidence occurred due to thawing of ground ice. Previous studies of

  8. Long-term recovery patterns of arctic tundra after winter seismic exploration.

    PubMed

    Jorgenson, Janet C; Ver Hoef, Jay M; Jorgenson, M T

    2010-01-01

    In response to the increasing global demand for energy, oil exploration and development are expanding into frontier areas of the Arctic, where slow-growing tundra vegetation and the underlying permafrost soils are very sensitive to disturbance. The creation of vehicle trails on the tundra from seismic exploration for oil has accelerated in the past decade, and the cumulative impact represents a geographic footprint that covers a greater extent of Alaska's North Slope tundra than all other direct human impacts combined. Seismic exploration for oil and gas was conducted on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, USA, in the winters of 1984 and 1985. This study documents recovery of vegetation and permafrost soils over a two-decade period after vehicle traffic on snow-covered tundra. Paired permanent vegetation plots (disturbed vs. reference) were monitored six times from 1984 to 2002. Data were collected on percent vegetative cover by plant species and on soil and ground ice characteristics. We developed Bayesian hierarchical models, with temporally and spatially autocorrelated errors, to analyze the effects of vegetation type and initial disturbance levels on recovery patterns of the different plant growth forms as well as soil thaw depth. Plant community composition was altered on the trails by species-specific responses to initial disturbance and subsequent changes in substrate. Long-term changes included increased cover of graminoids and decreased cover of evergreen shrubs and mosses. Trails with low levels of initial disturbance usually improved well over time, whereas those with medium to high levels of initial disturbance recovered slowly. Trails on ice-poor, gravel substrates of riparian areas recovered better than those on ice-rich loamy soils of the uplands, even after severe initial damage. Recovery to pre-disturbance communities was not possible where trail subsidence occurred due to thawing of ground ice. Previous studies of

  9. Flow velocities of Alaskan glaciers.

    PubMed

    Burgess, Evan W; Forster, Richard R; Larsen, Christopher F

    2013-01-01

    Our poor understanding of tidewater glacier dynamics remains the primary source of uncertainty in sea level rise projections. On the ice sheets, mass lost from tidewater calving exceeds the amount lost from surface melting. In Alaska, the magnitude of calving mass loss remains unconstrained, yet immense calving losses have been observed. With 20% of the global new-water sea level rise coming from Alaska, partitioning of mass loss sources in Alaska is needed to improve sea level rise projections. Here we present the first regionally comprehensive map of glacier flow velocities in Central Alaska. These data reveal that the majority of the regional downstream flux is constrained to only a few coastal glaciers. We find regional calving losses are 17.1 Gt a(-1), which is equivalent to 36% of the total annual mass change throughout Central Alaska.

  10. Constraining predictions of tundra permafrost and vegetation through model-data feedbacks and data-assimilation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davidson, C. D.; Dietze, M.

    2011-12-01

    Arctic climate is warming at a rate disproportionate to the rest of the world, and recent interest has emerged in using terrestrial biosphere models to understand and predict the response of tundra ecosystems to such warming. Of particular interest are the potential feedbacks between permafrost melting, plant community dynamics, and biogeochemical cycles. Here, we report on efforts to calibrate and validate version 2 of the Ecosystem Demography model (ED2) for the Alaskan tundra and on the use of model analyses to motivate targeted field measurements. ED2 is a terrestrial biosphere model unique in its ability to scale physiological and plant community dynamics to regional levels. We began by assessing the ability of ED2's land surface model to capture permafrost thermodynamics and hydrology. Simulations at Barrow and Toolik Lake, Alaska bore several incongruities with observed data, with soil temperatures significantly higher and soil moisture lower than observed. Modifications were made to increase the soil column depth and to simulate the effect of wind compaction on snow density, and in turn, the insulation of winter soils. In addition to these changes, a new soil class was created to represent unique characteristics within the organic horizon of tundra soils. Together these changes significantly improved permafrost dynamics without substantially altering dynamics in the temperate region. To capture tundra vegetation dynamics, tundra species were classified into three plant functional types (graminoid, deciduous shrub, evergreen shrub). ED2 was then iteratively calibrated for the tundra using the Predictive Ecosystem Analyzer (PEcAn), a scientific workflow and ecoinformatics toolbox developed to aid model parameterization and analysis. Initial parameter estimates were derived from a formal Bayesian meta-analysis of compiled plant trait data. Sensitivity analyses and variance decomposition demonstrated that model uncertainties were driven by the minimum

  11. Offshore oil in the Alaskan Arctic

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Weeks, W. F.; Weller, G.

    1984-01-01

    Oil and gas deposits in the Alaskan Arctic are estimated to contain up to 40 percent of the remaining undiscovered crude oil and oil-equivalent natural gas within U.S. jurisdiction. Most (65 to 70 percent) of these estimated reserves are believed to occuur offshore beneath the shallow, ice-covered seas of the Alaskan continental shelf. Offshore recovery operations for such areas are far from routine, with the primary problems associated with the presence of ice. Some problems that must be resolved if efficient, cost-effective, environmentally safe, year-round offshore production is to be achieved include the accurate estimation of ice forces on offshore structures, the proper placement of pipelines beneath ice-produced gouges in the sea floor, and the cleanup of oil spills in pack ice areas.

  12. Contexts for change in alpine tundra

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Malanson, George P.; Rose, Jonathan P.; Schroeder, P. Jason; Fagre, Daniel B.

    2011-01-01

    Because alpine tundra is responding to climate change, a need exists to understand the meaning of observed changes. To provide context for such interpretation, the relevance of niche and neutral theories of biogeography and the continuum and classification approaches to biogeographic description are assessed. Two extensive studies of alpine tundra, from the Indian Peaks area, Colorado and Glacier National Park, Montana, are combined. The data are ordinated to describe relations. The pattern that emerges is one of a continuum of vegetation, but with the distinctions one might expect from distant sites. The relationships of the similarity of vegetation on all possible pairs of sites to the environmental differences and geographic distances are analyzed using Mantel correlations. Because distance and environmental differences in climate between the two sites are correlated, partial correlations are weak but still significant. More advanced analyses are suggested for this environment prior to interpretation of monitoring efforts such as GLORIA.

  13. The unseen iceberg: Plant roots in arctic tundra

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Iverson, Colleen M.; Sloan, Victoria L.; Sullivan, Patrick F.; Euskirchen, E.S.; McGuire, Anthony; Norby, Richard J.; Walker, Anthony P.; Warren, Jeffrey M.; Wullschleger, Stan D.

    2015-01-01

    Plant roots play a critical role in ecosystem function in arctic tundra, but root dynamics in these ecosystems are poorly understood. To address this knowledge gap, we synthesized available literature on tundra roots, including their distribution, dynamics and contribution to ecosystem carbon and nutrient fluxes, and highlighted key aspects of their representation in terrestrial biosphere models. Across all tundra ecosystems, belowground plant biomass exceeded aboveground biomass, with the exception of polar desert tundra. Roots were shallowly distributed in the thin layer of soil that thaws annually, and were often found in surface organic soil horizons. Root traits – including distribution, chemistry, anatomy and resource partitioning – play an important role in controlling plant species competition, and therefore ecosystem carbon and nutrient fluxes, under changing climatic conditions, but have only been quantified for a small fraction of tundra plants. Further, the annual production and mortality of fine roots are key components of ecosystem processes in tundra, but extant data are sparse. Tundra root traits and dynamics should be the focus of future research efforts. Better representation of the dynamics and characteristics of tundra roots will improve the utility of models for the evaluation of the responses of tundra ecosystems to changing environmental conditions.

  14. The unseen iceberg: plant roots in arctic tundra.

    PubMed

    Iversen, Colleen M; Sloan, Victoria L; Sullivan, Patrick F; Euskirchen, Eugenie S; McGuire, A David; Norby, Richard J; Walker, Anthony P; Warren, Jeffrey M; Wullschleger, Stan D

    2015-01-01

    Plant roots play a critical role in ecosystem function in arctic tundra, but root dynamics in these ecosystems are poorly understood. To address this knowledge gap, we synthesized available literature on tundra roots, including their distribution, dynamics and contribution to ecosystem carbon and nutrient fluxes, and highlighted key aspects of their representation in terrestrial biosphere models. Across all tundra ecosystems, belowground plant biomass exceeded aboveground biomass, with the exception of polar desert tundra. Roots were shallowly distributed in the thin layer of soil that thaws annually, and were often found in surface organic soil horizons. Root traits - including distribution, chemistry, anatomy and resource partitioning - play an important role in controlling plant species competition, and therefore ecosystem carbon and nutrient fluxes, under changing climatic conditions, but have only been quantified for a small fraction of tundra plants. Further, the annual production and mortality of fine roots are key components of ecosystem processes in tundra, but extant data are sparse. Tundra root traits and dynamics should be the focus of future research efforts. Better representation of the dynamics and characteristics of tundra roots will improve the utility of models for the evaluation of the responses of tundra ecosystems to changing environmental conditions.

  15. Plant community responses to experimental warming across the tundra biome.

    PubMed

    Walker, Marilyn D; Wahren, C Henrik; Hollister, Robert D; Henry, Greg H R; Ahlquist, Lorraine E; Alatalo, Juha M; Bret-Harte, M Syndonia; Calef, Monika P; Callaghan, Terry V; Carroll, Amy B; Epstein, Howard E; Jónsdóttir, Ingibjörg S; Klein, Julia A; Magnússon, Borgthór; Molau, Ulf; Oberbauer, Steven F; Rewa, Steven P; Robinson, Clare H; Shaver, Gaius R; Suding, Katharine N; Thompson, Catharine C; Tolvanen, Anne; Totland, Ørjan; Turner, P Lee; Tweedie, Craig E; Webber, Patrick J; Wookey, Philip A

    2006-01-31

    Recent observations of changes in some tundra ecosystems appear to be responses to a warming climate. Several experimental studies have shown that tundra plants and ecosystems can respond strongly to environmental change, including warming; however, most studies were limited to a single location and were of short duration and based on a variety of experimental designs. In addition, comparisons among studies are difficult because a variety of techniques have been used to achieve experimental warming and different measurements have been used to assess responses. We used metaanalysis on plant community measurements from standardized warming experiments at 11 locations across the tundra biome involved in the International Tundra Experiment. The passive warming treatment increased plant-level air temperature by 1-3 degrees C, which is in the range of predicted and observed warming for tundra regions. Responses were rapid and detected in whole plant communities after only two growing seasons. Overall, warming increased height and cover of deciduous shrubs and graminoids, decreased cover of mosses and lichens, and decreased species diversity and evenness. These results predict that warming will cause a decline in biodiversity across a wide variety of tundra, at least in the short term. They also provide rigorous experimental evidence that recently observed increases in shrub cover in many tundra regions are in response to climate warming. These changes have important implications for processes and interactions within tundra ecosystems and between tundra and the atmosphere.

  16. 7 CFR 1780.49 - Rural or Native Alaskan villages.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... providing grants to remedy the dire sanitation conditions in rural Alaskan villages using funds specifically... 7 Agriculture 12 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Rural or Native Alaskan villages. 1780.49 Section 1780.49 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) RURAL UTILITIES...

  17. 7 CFR 1780.49 - Rural or Native Alaskan villages.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... providing grants to remedy the dire sanitation conditions in rural Alaskan villages using funds specifically... 7 Agriculture 12 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Rural or Native Alaskan villages. 1780.49 Section 1780.49 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) RURAL UTILITIES...

  18. Educational Provisions for the Alaskan Natives Since 1867.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hopkins, Thomas Robert

    The study compiles and records the history of the administration of education for Alaskan natives since the United States purchased the territory from Russia in 1876. Chapter 1, An Overview of the Development of the Alaskan Native, covers the development of missionary and government schools, the growth and development of Native education from 1906…

  19. Migration of Tundra Swans (Cygnus columbianus) Wintering in Japan Using Satellite Tracking: Identification of the Eastern Palearctic Flyway.

    PubMed

    Chen, Wenbo; Doko, Tomoko; Fujita, Go; Hijikata, Naoya; Tokita, Ken-Ichi; Uchida, Kiyoshi; Konishi, Kan; Hiraoka, Emiko; Higuchi, Hiroyoshi

    2016-02-01

    Migration through the Eastern Palearctic (EP) flyway by tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus) has not been thoroughly documented. We satellite-tracked the migration of 16 tundra swans that winter in Japan. The objectives of this study were 1) to show the migration pattern of the EP flyway of tundra swans; 2) to compare this pattern with the migration pattern of whooper swans; and 3) to identify stopover sites that are important for these swans' conservation. Tundra swans were captured at Kutcharo Lake, Hokkaido, in 2009-2012 and satellite-tracked. A new method called the "MATCHED (Migratory Analytical Time Change Easy Detection) method" was developed. Based on median, the spring migration began on 18 April and ended on 27 May. Autumn migration began on 9 September and ended on 2 November. The median duration of the spring and autumn migrations were 48 and 50 days, respectively. The mean duration at one stopover site was 5.5 days and 6.8 days for the spring and autumn migrations, respectively. The number of stopover sites was 3.0 and 2.5 for the spring and autumn migrations, respectively. The mean travel distances for the spring and autumn migrations were 6471 and 6331 km, respectively. Seven migration routes passing Sakhalin, the Amur River, and/or Kamchatka were identified. There were 15, 32, and eight wintering, stopover, and breeding sites, respectively. The migration routes and staging areas of tundra swans partially overlap with those of whooper swans, whose migration patterns have been previously documented. The migration patterns of these two swan species that winter in Japan confirm the importance of the Amur River, Udyl' Lake, Shchastya Bay, Aniva Bay, zaliv Chayvo Lake, zal Piltun Lake, zaliv Baykal Lake, Kolyma River, Buyunda River, Sen-kyuyel' Lake, and northern coastal areas of the Sea of Okhotsk.

  20. Migration of Tundra Swans (Cygnus columbianus) Wintering in Japan Using Satellite Tracking: Identification of the Eastern Palearctic Flyway.

    PubMed

    Chen, Wenbo; Doko, Tomoko; Fujita, Go; Hijikata, Naoya; Tokita, Ken-Ichi; Uchida, Kiyoshi; Konishi, Kan; Hiraoka, Emiko; Higuchi, Hiroyoshi

    2016-02-01

    Migration through the Eastern Palearctic (EP) flyway by tundra swans (Cygnus columbianus) has not been thoroughly documented. We satellite-tracked the migration of 16 tundra swans that winter in Japan. The objectives of this study were 1) to show the migration pattern of the EP flyway of tundra swans; 2) to compare this pattern with the migration pattern of whooper swans; and 3) to identify stopover sites that are important for these swans' conservation. Tundra swans were captured at Kutcharo Lake, Hokkaido, in 2009-2012 and satellite-tracked. A new method called the "MATCHED (Migratory Analytical Time Change Easy Detection) method" was developed. Based on median, the spring migration began on 18 April and ended on 27 May. Autumn migration began on 9 September and ended on 2 November. The median duration of the spring and autumn migrations were 48 and 50 days, respectively. The mean duration at one stopover site was 5.5 days and 6.8 days for the spring and autumn migrations, respectively. The number of stopover sites was 3.0 and 2.5 for the spring and autumn migrations, respectively. The mean travel distances for the spring and autumn migrations were 6471 and 6331 km, respectively. Seven migration routes passing Sakhalin, the Amur River, and/or Kamchatka were identified. There were 15, 32, and eight wintering, stopover, and breeding sites, respectively. The migration routes and staging areas of tundra swans partially overlap with those of whooper swans, whose migration patterns have been previously documented. The migration patterns of these two swan species that winter in Japan confirm the importance of the Amur River, Udyl' Lake, Shchastya Bay, Aniva Bay, zaliv Chayvo Lake, zal Piltun Lake, zaliv Baykal Lake, Kolyma River, Buyunda River, Sen-kyuyel' Lake, and northern coastal areas of the Sea of Okhotsk. PMID:26853870

  1. THE ROLE OF THERMAL REGIMEN IN TUNDRA PLANT COMMUNITY RESTORATION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Mineral extraction activities in the Arctic regions of the world produce long-lasting ecological disturbances. Assisted recovery from such disturbances may require restoration of the tundra thermal regime. We transplanted plugs of entire root zone and live tundra plants to a dist...

  2. Carbon cycle uncertainty in the Alaskan Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, J. B.; Sikka, M.; Oechel, W. C.; Huntzinger, D. N.; Melton, J. R.; Koven, C. D.; Ahlström, A.; Arain, M. A.; Baker, I.; Chen, J. M.; Ciais, P.; Davidson, C.; Dietze, M.; El-Masri, B.; Hayes, D.; Huntingford, C.; Jain, A. K.; Levy, P. E.; Lomas, M. R.; Poulter, B.; Price, D.; Sahoo, A. K.; Schaefer, K.; Tian, H.; Tomelleri, E.; Verbeeck, H.; Viovy, N.; Wania, R.; Zeng, N.; Miller, C. E.

    2014-08-01

    Climate change is leading to a disproportionately large warming in the high northern latitudes, but the magnitude and sign of the future carbon balance of the Arctic are highly uncertain. Using 40 terrestrial biosphere models for the Alaskan Arctic from four recent model intercomparison projects - NACP (North American Carbon Program) site and regional syntheses, TRENDY (Trends in net land atmosphere carbon exchanges), and WETCHIMP (Wetland and Wetland CH4 Inter-comparison of Models Project) - we provide a baseline of terrestrial carbon cycle uncertainty, defined as the multi-model standard deviation (σ) for each quantity that follows. Mean annual absolute uncertainty was largest for soil carbon (14.0 ± 9.2 kg C m-2), then gross primary production (GPP) (0.22 ± 0.50 kg C m-2 yr-1), ecosystem respiration (Re) (0.23 ± 0.38 kg C m-2 yr-1), net primary production (NPP) (0.14 ± 0.33 kg C m-2 yr-1), autotrophic respiration (Ra) (0.09 ± 0.20 kg C m-2 yr-1), heterotrophic respiration (Rh) (0.14 ± 0.20 kg C m-2 yr-1), net ecosystem exchange (NEE) (-0.01 ± 0.19 kg C m-2 yr-1), and CH4 flux (2.52 ± 4.02 g CH4 m-2 yr-1). There were no consistent spatial patterns in the larger Alaskan Arctic and boreal regional carbon stocks and fluxes, with some models showing NEE for Alaska as a strong carbon sink, others as a strong carbon source, while still others as carbon neutral. Finally, AmeriFlux data are used at two sites in the Alaskan Arctic to evaluate the regional patterns; observed seasonal NEE was captured within multi-model uncertainty. This assessment of carbon cycle uncertainties may be used as a baseline for the improvement of experimental and modeling activities, as well as a reference for future trajectories in carbon cycling with climate change in the Alaskan Arctic and larger boreal region.

  3. Engaging Alaskan Students in Cryospheric Research

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshikawa, K.; Sparrow, E. B.; Kopplin, M.

    2011-12-01

    The Permafrost/Active Layer Monitoring Program is an ongoing project, which builds on work begun in 2005 to establish long-term permafrost and active layer monitoring sites adjacent to schools in Alaskan communities and in the circumpolar permafrost region. Currently, there are about 200 schools in Alaska involved in the project including also Denali National Park and Preserve. The project has both scientific and outreach components. The monitoring sites collect temperature data on permafrost, and the length and depth of the active layer (the layer above the permafrost that thaws during summer and freezes again during winter). To ensure scientific integrity, the scientist installed all of the monitoring instruments and selected the sites representative of the surrounding biome and thermal conditions. This is a unique collaboration opportunity in that 1) uses scientifically accurate instruments, 2) is scientist led and supervised including instrumentation set-up and data quality check, 3)has teacher/student organized observation network, 4) increased spatial scale of monitoring sites that covers all of the Alaskan communities. Most of the monitoring sites are located in remote communities, where the majority of residents depend on a subsistence lifestyle. Changes in climate, length of seasons, and permafrost conditions directly impact natural resources and subsistence activities. Changes in permafrost conditions also affect local ecosystems and hydrological regimes, and can influence the severity of natural disasters. In addition to extending our knowledge of the arctic environment, the program involves school-age students. Several students have been using the data for their projects and have been inspired to continue their studies. The data gathered from these stations are shared with other schools and made available to the public through our web site (http://www.uaf.edu/permafrost). Also communities have increasingly become interested in this project not only as

  4. Long-term warming restructures Arctic tundra without changing net soil carbon storage.

    PubMed

    Sistla, Seeta A; Moore, John C; Simpson, Rodney T; Gough, Laura; Shaver, Gaius R; Schimel, Joshua P

    2013-05-30

    High latitudes contain nearly half of global soil carbon, prompting interest in understanding how the Arctic terrestrial carbon balance will respond to rising temperatures. Low temperatures suppress the activity of soil biota, retarding decomposition and nitrogen release, which limits plant and microbial growth. Warming initially accelerates decomposition, increasing nitrogen availability, productivity and woody-plant dominance. However, these responses may be transitory, because coupled abiotic-biotic feedback loops that alter soil-temperature dynamics and change the structure and activity of soil communities, can develop. Here we report the results of a two-decade summer warming experiment in an Alaskan tundra ecosystem. Warming increased plant biomass and woody dominance, indirectly increased winter soil temperature, homogenized the soil trophic structure across horizons and suppressed surface-soil-decomposer activity, but did not change total soil carbon or nitrogen stocks, thereby increasing net ecosystem carbon storage. Notably, the strongest effects were in the mineral horizon, where warming increased decomposer activity and carbon stock: a 'biotic awakening' at depth.

  5. Tundra Soil-Water Content and Temperature Behavior and Implications for Winter Tundra Travel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lilly, M. R.; Paetzold, R.; Kane, D. L.

    2007-12-01

    Unfrozen soil-water content was monitored in the upper meter of tundra soils, using TDR sensors at several locations on the North Slope of Alaska and in the Brooks Range foothills. In addition, soil temperature was monitored to a depth of 1.5 m at these locations using thermistors. Particular attention was paid to soil water and temperature behavior during freezing and thawing conditions. The upper organic layer of soil often exhibited very wet conditions and showed much greater temporal variability than the lower mineral soil layers. Permafrost acts as a barrier to water flow, so the soils usually are wet as they thaw in the spring. Boundaries between soil layers usually are very irregular and the soil materials are mixed due to churning from frost heaving. Soil-water content sensors integrate soil-water content over a relatively large volume compared to the essentially point measurements of the thermistors used to measure soil temperature. Anyone who has worked in the field knows how difficult it is to place sensors at an exact depth. Soil-surface roughness and vegetation under tundra conditions make accurate placement almost impossible. Minor discrepancies between soil-water freezing and thawing behavior should be expected. However, an overall picture of the annual soil-freezing processes still can be described by these matched sets of sensor observations. In addition to this data, general meteorological and snow depth data is collected. Results of this study may be useful in improving tundra travel guidelines. Currently, tundra travel is allowed if the soil temperature in the upper 30 cm of soil is colder than -5C. Soil water content and resulting ice bonding in the soil matrix does impact soil properties and the resulting impacts of tundra travel.

  6. Comparative metagenome analysis of an Alaskan glacier.

    PubMed

    Choudhari, Sulbha; Lohia, Ruchi; Grigoriev, Andrey

    2014-04-01

    The temperature in the Arctic region has been increasing in the recent past accompanied by melting of its glaciers. We took a snapshot of the current microbial inhabitation of an Alaskan glacier (which can be considered as one of the simplest possible ecosystems) by using metagenomic sequencing of 16S rRNA recovered from ice/snow samples. Somewhat contrary to our expectations and earlier estimates, a rich and diverse microbial population of more than 2,500 species was revealed including several species of Archaea that has been identified for the first time in the glaciers of the Northern hemisphere. The most prominent bacterial groups found were Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, and Firmicutes. Firmicutes were not reported in large numbers in a previously studied Alpine glacier but were dominant in an Antarctic subglacial lake. Representatives of Cyanobacteria, Actinobacteria and Planctomycetes were among the most numerous, likely reflecting the dependence of the ecosystem on the energy obtained through photosynthesis and close links with the microbial community of the soil. Principal component analysis (PCA) of nucleotide word frequency revealed distinct sequence clusters for different taxonomic groups in the Alaskan glacier community and separate clusters for the glacial communities from other regions of the world. Comparative analysis of the community composition and bacterial diversity present in the Byron glacier in Alaska with other environments showed larger overlap with an Arctic soil than with a high Arctic lake, indicating patterns of community exchange and suggesting that these bacteria may play an important role in soil development during glacial retreat.

  7. Sufentanil citrate immobilization of Alaskan moose calves.

    PubMed

    Kreeger, Terry J; Kellie, Kalin A

    2012-10-01

    Free-ranging Alaskan moose calves (Alces alces gigas) were immobilized with 0.12 mg/kg sufentanil (S; n=16), 0.12 mg/kg sufentanil plus 0.27 mg/kg xylazine (SX; n=11), or 0.007 mg/kg carfentanil plus 0.36 mg/kg xylazine (CX; n=13). Immobilants were antagonized with 1.2 mg/kg naltrexone (S) or 1.2 mg/kg naltrexone plus 2.4 mg/kg tolazoline (SX, CX). There were no differences in induction (P ≥ 0.29) or processing (P ≥ 0.44) times between groups. Moose given either S or SX had significantly shorter recovery times than moose given CX (P=0.001) and recovery times from S were shorter than from SX (P=0.02). Oxygen saturation values for all groups averaged 85 ± 8%, but were significantly higher (P=0.048) for CX (89 ± 7%) than for S (82 ± 8%). Based on these data, sufentanil at 0.1 mg/kg or sufentanil at 0.1 mg/kg plus xylazine at 0.25 mg/kg could provide effective remote immobilization for Alaskan moose calves and could be substituted for carfentanil or thiafentanil should the need arise.

  8. Nitrogen mineralization in a tussock tundra soil

    SciTech Connect

    Marion, G.M.; Miller, P.C.

    1982-01-01

    The effects of substrate quality, temperature, and moisture on nitrogen mineralization from a tussock tundra soil were examined with laboratory soil incubations utilizing both air-dried samples and field-moist intact cores. The potentially mineralizable nitrogen (PMN) was highly correlated to both total soil nitrogen (positively) and the carbon/nitrogen ratio (negatively). All soil horizons exhibited a net nitrogen mineralization even at a high carbon/nitrogen ratio of 92. It was concluded that field-moist intact soil cores provide a more reliable estimate than the air-dried samples of both PMN and the mineralization rate under standard laboratory conditions. There was no significant effect of moisture tension (0.0 to 0.4 bars) on net nitrogen mineralization. The average Q/sub 10/ (temperature effect) for net nitrogen mineralization was 2.5. Based on this study and others, it was concluded that temperature through its effect on nitrogen mineralization plays an important role in controlling plant productivity in these naturally nitrogen-deficient tundra ecosystems.

  9. Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jones, Benjamin M.; Grosse, Guido; Arp, Christopher D.; Miller, Eric K.; Liu, Lingli; Hayes, Daniel J.; Larsen, Christopher F.

    2015-01-01

    Fire-induced permafrost degradation is well documented in boreal forests, but the role of fires in initiating thermokarst development in Arctic tundra is less well understood. Here we show that Arctic tundra fires may induce widespread thaw subsidence of permafrost terrain in the first seven years following the disturbance. Quantitative analysis of airborne LiDAR data acquired two and seven years post-fire, detected permafrost thaw subsidence across 34% of the burned tundra area studied, compared to less than 1% in similar undisturbed, ice-rich tundra terrain units. The variability in thermokarst development appears to be influenced by the interaction of tundra fire burn severity and near-surface, ground-ice content. Subsidence was greatest in severely burned, ice-rich upland terrain (yedoma), accounting for ~50% of the detected subsidence, despite representing only 30% of the fire disturbed study area. Microtopography increased by 340% in this terrain unit as a result of ice wedge degradation. Increases in the frequency, magnitude, and severity of tundra fires will contribute to future thermokarst development and associated landscape change in Arctic tundra regions.

  10. Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Benjamin M.; Grosse, Guido; Arp, Christopher D.; Miller, Eric; Liu, Lin; Hayes, Daniel J.; Larsen, Christopher F.

    2015-01-01

    Fire-induced permafrost degradation is well documented in boreal forests, but the role of fires in initiating thermokarst development in Arctic tundra is less well understood. Here we show that Arctic tundra fires may induce widespread thaw subsidence of permafrost terrain in the first seven years following the disturbance. Quantitative analysis of airborne LiDAR data acquired two and seven years post-fire, detected permafrost thaw subsidence across 34% of the burned tundra area studied, compared to less than 1% in similar undisturbed, ice-rich tundra terrain units. The variability in thermokarst development appears to be influenced by the interaction of tundra fire burn severity and near-surface, ground-ice content. Subsidence was greatest in severely burned, ice-rich upland terrain (yedoma), accounting for ~50% of the detected subsidence, despite representing only 30% of the fire disturbed study area. Microtopography increased by 340% in this terrain unit as a result of ice wedge degradation. Increases in the frequency, magnitude, and severity of tundra fires will contribute to future thermokarst development and associated landscape change in Arctic tundra regions. PMID:26511650

  11. Recent Arctic tundra fire initiates widespread thermokarst development.

    PubMed

    Jones, Benjamin M; Grosse, Guido; Arp, Christopher D; Miller, Eric; Liu, Lin; Hayes, Daniel J; Larsen, Christopher F

    2015-10-29

    Fire-induced permafrost degradation is well documented in boreal forests, but the role of fires in initiating thermokarst development in Arctic tundra is less well understood. Here we show that Arctic tundra fires may induce widespread thaw subsidence of permafrost terrain in the first seven years following the disturbance. Quantitative analysis of airborne LiDAR data acquired two and seven years post-fire, detected permafrost thaw subsidence across 34% of the burned tundra area studied, compared to less than 1% in similar undisturbed, ice-rich tundra terrain units. The variability in thermokarst development appears to be influenced by the interaction of tundra fire burn severity and near-surface, ground-ice content. Subsidence was greatest in severely burned, ice-rich upland terrain (yedoma), accounting for ~50% of the detected subsidence, despite representing only 30% of the fire disturbed study area. Microtopography increased by 340% in this terrain unit as a result of ice wedge degradation. Increases in the frequency, magnitude, and severity of tundra fires will contribute to future thermokarst development and associated landscape change in Arctic tundra regions.

  12. Evidence and Implications of Frequent Fires in Ancient Shrub Tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Higuera, P E; Brubaker, L B; Anderson, P M; Brown, T A; Kennedy, A T; Hu, F S

    2008-03-06

    Understanding feedbacks between terrestrial and atmospheric systems is vital for predicting the consequences of global change, particularly in the rapidly changing Arctic. Fire is a key process in this context, but the consequences of altered fire regimes in tundra ecosystems are rarely considered, largely because tundra fires occur infrequently on the modern landscape. We present paleoecological data that indicate frequent tundra fires in northcentral Alaska between 14,000 and 10,000 years ago. Charcoal and pollen from lake sediments reveal that ancient birchdominated shrub tundra burned as often as modern boreal forests in the region, every 144 years on average (+/- 90 s.d.; n = 44). Although paleoclimate interpretations and data from modern tundra fires suggest that increased burning was aided by low effective moisture, vegetation cover clearly played a critical role in facilitating the paleo-fires by creating an abundance of fine fuels. These records suggest that greater fire activity will likely accompany temperature-related increases in shrub-dominated tundra predicted for the 21st century and beyond. Increased tundra burning will have broad impacts on physical and biological systems as well as land-atmosphere interactions in the Arctic, including the potential to release stored organic carbon to the atmosphere.

  13. Exporting Alaskan North Slope crude oil: Benefits and costs

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-06-01

    The Department of Energy study examines the effects of lifting the current prohibitions against the export of Alaskan North Slope (ANS) crude. The study concludes that permitting exports would benefit the US economy. First, lifting the ban would expand the markets in which ANS oil can be sold, thereby increasing its value. ANS oil producers, the States of California and Alaska, and some of their local governments all would benefit from increased revenues. Permitting exports also would generate new economic activity and employment in California and Alaska. The study concludes that these economic benefits would be achieved without increasing gasoline prices (either in California or in the nation as a whole). Lifting the export ban could have important implications for US maritime interests. The Merchant Marine Act of 1970 (known as the Jones Act) requires all inter-coastal shipments to be carried on vessels that are US-owned, US-crewed, and US-built. By limiting the shipment of ANS crude to US ports only, the export ban creates jobs for the seafarers and the builders of Jones Act vessels. Because the Jones Act does not apply to exports, however, lifting the ban without also changing US maritime law would jeopardize the jobs associated with the current fleet of Jones Act tankers. Therefore the report analyzes selected economic impacts of several maritime policy alternatives, including: Maintaining current law, which allows foreign tankers to carry oil where export is allowed; requiring exports of ANS crude to be carried on Jones Act vessels; and requiring exports of ANS crude to be carried on vessels that are US-owned and US-crewed, but not necessarily US-built. Under each of these options, lifting the export ban would generate economic benefits.

  14. Microbial community composition and function across an arctic tundra landscape.

    PubMed

    Zak, Donald R; Kling, George W

    2006-07-01

    Arctic landscapes are characterized by a diversity of ecosystems, which differ in plant species composition, litter biochemistry, and biogeochemical cycling rates. Tundra ecosystems differing in plant composition should contain compositionally and functionally distinct microbial communities that differentially transform dissolved organic matter as it moves downslope from dry, upland to wet, lowland tundra. To test this idea, we studied soil microbial communities in upland tussock, stream-side birch-willow, and lakeside wet sedge tundra in arctic Alaska, USA. These are a series of ecosystems that differ in topographic position, plant composition, and soil drainage. Phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analyses, coupled with compound-specific 13C isotope tracing, were used to quantify microbial community composition and function; we also assayed the activity of extracellular enzymes involved in cellulose, chitin, and lignin degradation. Surface soil from each tundra ecosystem was labeled with 13C-cellobiose,13C-N-acetylglucosamine, or 13C-vanillin. After a five-day incubation, we followed the movement of 13C into bacterial and fungal PLFAs, microbial respiration, dissolved organic carbon, and soil organic matter. Microbial community composition and function were distinct among tundra ecosystems, with tussock tundra containing a significantly greater abundance and activity of soil fungi. Although the majority of 13C-labeled substrates rapidly moved into soil organic matter in all tundra soils (i.e., 50-90% of applied 13C), microbial respiration of labeled substrates in wet sedge tundra soil was lower than in tussock and birch-willow tundra; approximately 8% of 13C-cellobiose and approximately 5% of 13C-vanillin was respired in wet sedge soil vs. 26-38% of 13C-cellobiose and 18-21% of 13C-vanillin in the other tundra ecosystems. Despite these differences, wet sedge tundra exhibited the greatest extracellular enzyme activity. Topographic variation in plant litter biochemistry

  15. Carbon cycle uncertainty in the Alaskan Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, J. B.; Sikka, M.; Oechel, W. C.; Huntzinger, D. N.; Melton, J. R.; Koven, C. D.; Ahlström, A.; Arain, A. M.; Baker, I.; Chen, J. M.; Ciais, P.; Davidson, C.; Dietze, M.; El-Masri, B.; Hayes, D.; Huntingford, C.; Jain, A.; Levy, P. E.; Lomas, M. R.; Poulter, B.; Price, D.; Sahoo, A. K.; Schaefer, K.; Tian, H.; Tomelleri, E.; Verbeeck, H.; Viovy, N.; Wania, R.; Zeng, N.; Miller, C. E.

    2014-02-01

    Climate change is leading to a disproportionately large warming in the high northern latitudes, but the magnitude and sign of the future carbon balance of the Arctic are highly uncertain. Using 40 terrestrial biosphere models for Alaska, we provide a baseline of terrestrial carbon cycle structural and parametric uncertainty, defined as the multi-model standard deviation (σ) against the mean (x\\bar) for each quantity. Mean annual uncertainty (σ/x\\bar) was largest for net ecosystem exchange (NEE) (-0.01± 0.19 kg C m-2 yr-1), then net primary production (NPP) (0.14 ± 0.33 kg C m-2 yr-1), autotrophic respiration (Ra) (0.09 ± 0.20 kg C m-2 yr-1), gross primary production (GPP) (0.22 ± 0.50 kg C m-2 yr-1), ecosystem respiration (Re) (0.23 ± 0.38 kg C m-2 yr-1), CH4 flux (2.52 ± 4.02 g CH4 m-2 yr-1), heterotrophic respiration (Rh) (0.14 ± 0.20 kg C m-2 yr-1), and soil carbon (14.0± 9.2 kg C m-2). The spatial patterns in regional carbon stocks and fluxes varied widely with some models showing NEE for Alaska as a strong carbon sink, others as a strong carbon source, while still others as carbon neutral. Additionally, a feedback (i.e., sensitivity) analysis was conducted of 20th century NEE to CO2 fertilization (β) and climate (γ), which showed that uncertainty in γ was 2x larger than that of β, with neither indicating that the Alaskan Arctic is shifting towards a certain net carbon sink or source. Finally, AmeriFlux data are used at two sites in the Alaskan Arctic to evaluate the regional patterns; observed seasonal NEE was captured within multi-model uncertainty. This assessment of carbon cycle uncertainties may be used as a baseline for the improvement of experimental and modeling activities, as well as a reference for future trajectories in carbon cycling with climate change in the Alaskan Arctic.

  16. Where do the treeless tundra areas of northern highlands fit in the global biome system: toward an ecologically natural subdivision of the tundra biome.

    PubMed

    Virtanen, Risto; Oksanen, Lauri; Oksanen, Tarja; Cohen, Juval; Forbes, Bruce C; Johansen, Bernt; Käyhkö, Jukka; Olofsson, Johan; Pulliainen, Jouni; Tømmervik, Hans

    2016-01-01

    According to some treatises, arctic and alpine sub-biomes are ecologically similar, whereas others find them highly dissimilar. Most peculiarly, large areas of northern tundra highlands fall outside of the two recent subdivisions of the tundra biome. We seek an ecologically natural resolution to this long-standing and far-reaching problem. We studied broad-scale patterns in climate and vegetation along the gradient from Siberian tundra via northernmost Fennoscandia to the alpine habitats of European middle-latitude mountains, as well as explored those patterns within Fennoscandian tundra based on climate-vegetation patterns obtained from a fine-scale vegetation map. Our analyses reveal that ecologically meaningful January-February snow and thermal conditions differ between different types of tundra. High precipitation and mild winter temperatures prevail on middle-latitude mountains, low precipitation and usually cold winters prevail on high-latitude tundra, and Scandinavian mountains show intermediate conditions. Similarly, heath-like plant communities differ clearly between middle latitude mountains (alpine) and high-latitude tundra vegetation, including its altitudinal extension on Scandinavian mountains. Conversely, high abundance of snowbeds and large differences in the composition of dwarf shrub heaths distinguish the Scandinavian mountain tundra from its counterparts in Russia and the north Fennoscandian inland. The European tundra areas fall into three ecologically rather homogeneous categories: the arctic tundra, the oroarctic tundra of northern heights and mountains, and the genuinely alpine tundra of middle-latitude mountains. Attempts to divide the tundra into two sub-biomes have resulted in major discrepancies and confusions, as the oroarctic areas are included in the arctic tundra in some biogeographic maps and in the alpine tundra in others. Our analyses based on climate and vegetation criteria thus seem to resolve the long-standing biome

  17. Development of Alaskan gas hydrate resources

    SciTech Connect

    Kamath, V.A.; Sharma, G.D.; Patil, S.L.

    1991-06-01

    The research undertaken in this project pertains to study of various techniques for production of natural gas from Alaskan gas hydrates such as, depressurization, injection of hot water, steam, brine, methanol and ethylene glycol solutions through experimental investigation of decomposition characteristics of hydrate cores. An experimental study has been conducted to measure the effective gas permeability changes as hydrates form in the sandpack and the results have been used to determine the reduction in the effective gas permeability of the sandpack as a function of hydrate saturation. A user friendly, interactive, menu-driven, numerical difference simulator has been developed to model the dissociation of natural gas hydrates in porous media with variable thermal properties. A numerical, finite element simulator has been developed to model the dissociation of hydrates during hot water injection process.

  18. Subacute necrotising encephalopathy in an Alaskan husky.

    PubMed

    Wakshlag, J J; de Lahunta, A; Robinson, T; Cooper, B J; Brenner, O; O'Toole, T D; Olson, J; Beckman, K B; Glass, E; Reynolds, A J

    1999-12-01

    A 29-month-old female Alaskan husky was presented recumbent, tetraparetic and in a state of dementia, with blindness and cranial nerve deficits. The dog's progress was followed for over two months, as the signs resolved to an non-progressive mild hypermetria with slight proprioceptive ataxia, a diminished menace response and inability to prehend food. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) revealed bilateral cavitation extending from the thalamus to the medulla, with less pronounced degenerative lesions in the caudate nucleus, putamen and claustrum. Cerebrospinal fluid lactate and pyruvate concentrations were in their normal ranges. Necropsy and histological examination confirmed the MRI findings as well as neuronal degeneration of the cerebellar cortex in the vermis and degenerative changes in the neocortex at the depths of the cerebral sulci. In view of the similarity of lesions to subacute necrotising encephalomyelopathy, known as Leigh's disease in humans, a tentative diagnosis of a mitochondrial encephalopathy was made.

  19. Gastritis in Alaskan racing sled dogs.

    PubMed

    Ritchey, J W; Davis, M S; Breshears, M A; Willard, M D; Williamson, K K; Royer, C M; Payton, M E; Cragun, A S

    2011-07-01

    Alaskan racing sled dogs are a well-established model of exercise-induced gastric disease. The aim of this study was to define the temporal development of microscopical gastric lesions during long distance racing. Two groups of dogs were examined: group I comprised conditioned dogs that were exercising and group II were conditioned dogs not exercising. The gastric mucosa was examined endoscopically and sampled for routine histopathology and microscopical scoring, immunohistochemistry (IHC) and detection of apoptotic epithelial cells. Overall, group I dogs exhibited more significant epithelial lesions, including ulcers, compared with dogs in group II. Group II dogs exhibited the most severe mucosal inflammatory infiltrates. Although the intensity of inflammation differed, the nature of the inflammation was similar between groups, consisting of diffuse lymphocytic infiltration and a unique interface-type infiltrate that obscured the basement membrane zone and was accompanied by intraepithelial infiltration of lymphocytes. IHC confirmed the presence of CD3(+) T and CD79(+) B lymphocytes within the mucosal infiltrates; however, most of the intraepithelial and interface infiltrates were CD3(+) T cells. Spiral-shaped bacterial organisms were seen in the gastric tissues; however, their presence did not correlate with either the severity of epithelial lesions, inflammation or the pattern of interface inflammation. The number of apoptotic epithelial cells was widely variable and not significantly different between groups. These findings confirm previous observations that gastric ulcers develop in conditioned dogs under racing stress. The unique nature of the interface-type gastric inflammation is similar to that of human lymphocytic gastritis and may suggest an immune-mediated mechanism for the changes seen in Alaskan racing sled dogs.

  20. Disturbance and recovery of arctic Alaskan tundra terrain. A review of recent investigations. Report for 1976-1983

    SciTech Connect

    Walker, D.A.; Cate, D.; Brown, J.; Racine, C.

    1987-07-01

    This report summarizes over a decade of CRREL-managed research regarding disturbance and recovery in northern Alaska. Themes emphasized include: 1) Most anthropogenic disturbances have natural analogs, which can provide much inexpensive information that can be related to modern disturbances and their rates of recovery. 2) Most single-event disturbances will heal and develop a functioning ecosystem within a human life span, but a return to the original ecosystem can rarely be expected for major impacts. 3) The concept of recovery must be based on consistent terminology that recognizes the distinction between ecosystem resistance (the ability to withstand impact) and resilience (the ability to return to the previous undisturbed state) and also the distinction between complete recovery (a return to the original ecosystem) and functional recovery (the development of a functional ecosystem different from the original). In permafrost regions with massive ground ice, recovery of the vegetation is limited by alterations to the permafrost regime.

  1. Secrets to a successful researcher-teacher collaboration: field notes from an expedition in the Alaskan tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Webb, E.; Lane, T.

    2013-12-01

    PolarTREC (Teachers and Researchers Exploring and Collaborating) is a program that pairs K-12 teachers with researchers and brings teachers to the polar regions to participate in hands-on field research. In the winter of 2013, Westford, VT high school teacher Tom Lane worked with University of Florida graduate student Elizabeth Webb studying winter ecosystem respiration in interior Alaska. Tom lived and worked with the UF research team for five weeks and participated in field preparation, data collection and processing, daily conversations aimed at improving field methods, and weekly scientific paper discussions. Together Elizabeth and Tom devised ways to communicate the science to Tom's students; they interspersed graphs of field data and discussions of biology with descriptions of the landscape and local lore. Tom communicated with his students daily via blogs and in a question and answer forum. This experience gave Tom a veiw into the inner workings of a field research team and the information he gained has had a profound effect on how and what Tom teaches his high school science students. Elizabeth gained insight and clarification of her own research by explaining the nuances of field methods, answering questions she never thought to ask, and by constantly placing her work in a large context. Here we present the secrets to this successful collaboration and provide a model for effective teacher-researcher partnerships: researcher-student interactions, teacher-research team integration, and the support of an established program such as PolarTREC.

  2. Spatial energy budgets in alpine tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greenland, D.

    1993-12-01

    Modelling and Geographic Information System (GIS) technology are employed in order to extend spatially, estimated and observed growing season values of the components of the surface heat energy budget for an area of alpine tundra in the Colorado Front Range. A surface equilibrium temperature model is calibrated for one sub-class of vegetation surface and is used to model surface heat energy budget component values for other sub-classes of vegetation. The model values compare favorably with values independently estimated or observed. The data are spatially displayed using the Idrisi GIS. At the microclimatic scale the presence of different sub-classes of vegetation plays a large role in controlling the actual values of the surface heat budget components. This is in contrast to the larger scale at which climatic variables such as air temperature control the overall vegetation type found in the area.

  3. 8. DETAIL OF QUONSET HUT SHOWING BOARDWALK ON TUNDRA CONNECTING ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    8. DETAIL OF QUONSET HUT SHOWING BOARDWALK ON TUNDRA CONNECTING QUONSET HUTS THAT DID NOT HAVE INTERCONNNECTING WOOD FRAME CORRIDORS - Fort Randall, Neuro-Psychiatric Ward, Northeast of intersection of California Boulevard & Nurse Drive, Cold Bay, Aleutian Islands, AK

  4. Prevalence, transmission, and genetic diversity of blood parasites infecting tundra-nesting geese in Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ramey, Andy M.; Reed, John A.; Schmutz, Joel A.; Fondell, Tom F.; Meixell, Brandt W.; Hupp, Jerry W.; Ward, David H.; Terenzi, John; Ely, Craig R.

    2014-01-01

    A total of 842 blood samples collected from five species of tundra-nesting geese in Alaska was screened for haemosporidian parasites using molecular techniques. Parasites of the generaLeucocytozoon Danilewsky, 1890, Haemoproteus Kruse, 1890, and Plasmodium Marchiafava and Celli, 1885 were detected in 169 (20%), 3 (<1%), and 0 (0%) samples, respectively. Occupancy modeling was used to estimate prevalence of Leucocytozoon parasites and assess variation relative to species, age, sex, geographic area, year, and decade. Species, age, and decade were identified as important in explaining differences in prevalence of Leucocytozoonparasites. Leucocytozoon parasites were detected in goslings sampled along the Arctic Coastal Plain using both historic and contemporary samples, which provided support for transmission in the North American Arctic. In contrast, lack of detection of Haemoproteus and Plasmodiumparasites in goslings (n = 238) provided evidence to suggest that the transmission of parasites of these genera may not occur among waterfowl using tundra habitats in Alaska, or alternatively, may only occur at low levels. Five haemosporidian genetic lineages shared among different species of geese sampled from two geographic areas were indicative of interspecies parasite transmission and supported broad parasite or vector distributions. However, identicalLeucocytozoon and Haemoproteus lineages on public databases were limited to waterfowl hosts suggesting constraints in the range of parasite hosts.

  5. Russian Arctic warming and ‘greening’ are closely tracked by tundra shrub willows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forbes, B. C.; Macias Fauria, M.; Zetterberg, P.

    2009-12-01

    Growth in arctic vegetation is generally expected to increase under a warming climate, particularly among deciduous shrubs. We analyzed annual ring growth for an abundant and nearly circumpolar erect willow (Salix lanata L.) from the coastal zone of the northwest Russian Arctic (Nenets Autonomous Okrug). The resulting chronology is strongly related to summer temperature for the period 1942-2005. Remarkably high correlations occur at long distances (>1600 km) across the tundra and taiga zones of West Siberia and Eastern Europe. We also found a clear relationship with photosynthetic activity for upland vegetation at a regional scale for the period 1981-2005, confirming a parallel ‘greening’ trend reported for similarly warming North American portions of the tundra biome. The standardized growth curve suggests a significant increase in shrub willow growth over the last six decades. These findings are in line with field and remote sensing studies that have assigned a strong shrub component to the reported greening signal since the early 1980s. Furthermore, the growth trend agrees with qualitative observations by nomadic Nenets reindeer herders of recent increases in willow size in the region. The quality of the chronology as a climate proxy is exceptional. Given its wide geographic distribution and the ready preservation of wood in permafrost, S. lanata L. has great potential for extended temperature reconstructions in remote areas across the Arctic.

  6. Modeled change in carbon balance between 1970-2100 of a polygonal arctic tundra ecosystem near Barrow, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lara, M. J.; McGuire, A. D.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Sloan, V. L.; Iversen, C. M.; Norby, R. J.; Genet, H.; Zhang, Y.; Yuan, F.

    2013-12-01

    Northern permafrost regions are estimated to cover 16% of the global soil area and account for approximately 50% of the global belowground organic carbon pool. However, there are considerable uncertainties regarding the fate of this soil carbon pool with projected climate warming over the next century. In northern Alaska, nearly 65% of the terrestrial surface is composed of polygonal tundra, where microtopographic position (i.e. high center, low center, trough) varies surface hydrology, plant community composition, and biogeochemical cycling, over small (<5m) spatial scales. Due to large spatial heterogeneity and other non-linear responses of soil carbon to altered thermal regime, it is difficult to accurately estimate the fate of terrestrial carbon balance over decadal time-scales without explicitly considering the dynamically coupled processes driving permafrost dynamics, community structure, and ecosystem function. We use a new version of the terrestrial ecosystem model (TEM), which couples a dynamic vegetation and dynamic organic soil model (DVM-DOS-TEM). This large-scale ecosystem model is designed to study interactions among carbon and nitrogen cycling, vegetation composition, and soil physical properties, including permafrost and active layer dynamics. The model is parameterized and calibrated using data specific to the local climate, vegetation, and soils within various polygon land cover types (i.e. high center & rim, low center, trough) collected from sites (71.28°N 156.60° W) on the arctic coastal plain near Barrow, Alaska to estimate the likely change in carbon balance between 1970 and 2100 in this landscape. Model outputs are scaled across the Barrow Peninsula using the distribution of polygonal tundra land cover types, described by a land cover classification of 26.9 km2, using a 2008 multi-spectral QuickBird satellite image. The polygonal tundra land cover classification found high center & rims to represent 37.5% of the study area, low centers 19

  7. Carbon loss from an unprecedented Arctic tundra wildfire.

    PubMed

    Mack, Michelle C; Bret-Harte, M Syndonia; Hollingsworth, Teresa N; Jandt, Randi R; Schuur, Edward A G; Shaver, Gaius R; Verbyla, David L

    2011-07-27

    Arctic tundra soils store large amounts of carbon (C) in organic soil layers hundreds to thousands of years old that insulate, and in some cases maintain, permafrost soils. Fire has been largely absent from most of this biome since the early Holocene epoch, but its frequency and extent are increasing, probably in response to climate warming. The effect of fires on the C balance of tundra landscapes, however, remains largely unknown. The Anaktuvuk River fire in 2007 burned 1,039 square kilometres of Alaska's Arctic slope, making it the largest fire on record for the tundra biome and doubling the cumulative area burned since 1950 (ref. 5). Here we report that tundra ecosystems lost 2,016 ± 435 g C m(-2) in the fire, an amount two orders of magnitude larger than annual net C exchange in undisturbed tundra. Sixty per cent of this C loss was from soil organic matter, and radiocarbon dating of residual soil layers revealed that the maximum age of soil C lost was 50 years. Scaled to the entire burned area, the fire released approximately 2.1 teragrams of C to the atmosphere, an amount similar in magnitude to the annual net C sink for the entire Arctic tundra biome averaged over the last quarter of the twentieth century. The magnitude of ecosystem C lost by fire, relative to both ecosystem and biome-scale fluxes, demonstrates that a climate-driven increase in tundra fire disturbance may represent a positive feedback, potentially offsetting Arctic greening and influencing the net C balance of the tundra biome.

  8. Delineation of Tundra Swan Cygnus c. columbianus populations in North America: geographic boundaries and interchange

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ely, Craig R.; Sladen, William J. L.; Wilson, Heather M.; Savage, Susan E.; Sowl, Kristine M.; Henry, Bill; Schwitters, Mike; Snowden, James

    2014-01-01

    North American Tundra Swans Cygnus c. columbianus are composed of two wellrecognised populations: an Eastern Population (EP) that breeds across northern Canada and north of the Brooks Range in Alaska, which migrates to the eastern seaboard of the United States, and a Western Population (WP) that breeds in coastal regions of Alaska south of the Brooks Range and migrates to western North America. We present results of a recent major ringing effort from across the breeding range in Alaska to provide a better definition of the geographic extent of the migratory divide in Alaska. We also reassess the staging and winter distributions of these populations based on locations of birds tracked using satellite transmitters, and recent recoveries and sightings of neck-collared birds. Summer sympatry of EP and WP Tundra Swans is very limited, and largely confined to a small area in northwest Alaska. Autumn migration pathways of EP and WP Tundra swans abut in southwest Saskatchewan, a region where migrating WP birds turn west, and EP birds deviate abruptly eastward. Overall, from 1989 to 2013 inclusive, 2.6% of recoveries or resightings reported to the USGS Bird Banding Laboratory were of birds that moved from the domain of the population in which they were initially captured to within the range of the other population; a proportion roughly comparable to the results of Limpert et al. (1991) for years before 1990. Of the 70 cross-boundary movements reported since 1989, 39% were of birds marked on breeding areas and 61% were of birds marked on wintering areas. Dispersing swans (i.e. those that made crossboundary movements) did not differ with respect to age or sex from those that did not move between populations. The Brooks Range in northern Alaska effectively separates the two populations within Alaska, but climate-induced changes in tundra breeding habitats and losses of wetlands on staging areas may alter the distribution for both of these populations.

  9. Phenological dynamics of arctic tundra vegetation and its implications on satellite imagery interpretation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juutinen, Sari; Aurela, Mika; Mikola, Juha; Räsänen, Aleksi; Virtanen, Tarmo

    2016-04-01

    Remote sensing is a key methodology when monitoring the responses of arctic ecosystems to climatic warming. The short growing season and rapid vegetation development, however, set demands to the timing of image acquisition in the arctic. We used multispectral very high spatial resolution satellite images to study the effect of vegetation phenology on the spectral reflectance and image interpretation in the low arctic tundra in coastal Siberia (Tiksi, 71°35'39"N, 128°53'17"E). The study site mainly consists of peatlands, tussock, dwarf shrub, and grass tundra, and stony areas with some lichen and shrub patches. We tested the hypotheses that (1) plant phenology is responsive to the interannual weather variation and (2) the phenological state of vegetation has an impact on satellite image interpretation and the ability to distinguish between the plant communities. We used an empirical transfer function with temperature sums as drivers to reconstruct daily leaf area index (LAI) for the different plant communities for years 2005, and 2010-2014 based on measured LAI development in summer 2014. Satellite images, taken during growing seasons, were acquired for two years having late and early spring, and short and long growing season, respectively. LAI dynamics showed considerable interannual variation due to weather variation, and particularly the relative contribution of graminoid dominated communities was sensitive to these phenology shifts. We have also analyzed the differences in the reflectance values between the two satellite images taking account the LAI dynamics. These results will increase our understanding of the pitfalls that may arise from the timing of image acquisition when interpreting the vegetation structure in a heterogeneous tundra landscape. Very high spatial resolution multispectral images are available at reasonable cost, but not in high temporal resolution, which may lead to compromises when matching ground truth and the imagery. On the other hand

  10. Changing snow cover in tundra ecosystems tips the Arctic carbon balance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zona, D.; Hufkens, K.; Gioli, B.; Kalhori, A. A. M.; Oechel, W. C.

    2014-12-01

    The Arctic environment has witnessed important changes due to global warming, resulting in increased surface air temperatures and rain events which both exacerbate snow cover deterioration (Semmens et al, 2013; Rennert et al, 2009; White et al, 2007; Min et al, 2008; Sharp et al, 2013; Schaeffer et al, 2013). Snow cover duration is declining by almost 20% per decade, a far higher rate than model estimates (Derksen and Brown, 2012). Concomitant with increasing temperatures and decreasing snow cover duration, the length of the arctic growing season is reported to have increased by 1.1 - 4.9 days per decade since 1951 (Menzel et al, 2006), and, plant productivity and CO2 uptake from arctic vegetation are strongly influenced by changes in growing season length (Myneni et al., 1997; Schaefer et al., 2005; Euskirchen et al., 2006). Based on more than a decade of eddy flux measurements in Arctic tundra ecosystems across the North slope of Alaska, and remotely sensed snow cover data, we show that earlier snow melt in the spring increase C uptake while an extended snow free period in autumn is associated with a higher C loss. Here we present the impacts of changes in snow cover dynamics between spring and autumn in arctic tundra ecosystems on the carbon dynamics and net C balance of the Alaskan Arctic. ReferencesDerksen, C., Brown R. (2012) Geophys. Res. Lett., doi:10.1029/2012GL053387 Euskirchen, E.S., et al. (2006) Glob. Change Biol., 12, 731-750. Menzel, A., et al. 2006. Glob. Change Biol., 12, 1969-1976. Min SK, Zhang X, Zweirs F (2008) Science 320: 518-520. Rennert K J, Roe G, Putkonen J and Bitz C M (2009) J. Clim. 22 2302-15. Schaefer, K., Denning A.S., Leonard O. (2005) Global Biogeochem. Cycles, 19, GB3017. Schaeffer, S. M., Sharp, E., Schimel, J. P. & Welker, J. M. (2013). Soil- plant N processes in a High Arctic ecosystem, NW Greenland are altered by long-term experimental warming and higher rainfall. Glob. Change Biol., 11, 3529-39. doi: 10.1111/gcb.12318

  11. Development of Antarctic herb tundra vegetation near Arctowski station, King George Island

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kozeretska, I. A.; Parnikoza, I. Yu.; Mustafa, O.; Tyschenko, O. V.; Korsun, S. G.; Convey, P.

    2010-01-01

    We studied the development of the Antarctic herb tundra vegetation formation in relation to the history of deglaciation across a range of habitats near H. Arctowski Research Station (King George Island, South Shetland Islands). Across the three identified environmental zones (coastal, intermediate, periglacial), we quantified the total vegetation cover, cover of the two indigenous flowering plants and bryophytes, age structure and reproductive features of the two flowering plants, and species diversity of mosses and liverworts. Analysis of these data supported the recognition of the three environmental zones; however, there were few indications of systematic differences in biological features of the two higher plants across the three zones, generally supporting the view that these, and the grass Deschampsia antarctica in particular, are effective primary colonists of recently deglaciated ground in this region.

  12. Alaska Is Our Home--Book 3: A Natural Science Handbook for Alaskan Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bury, John; Bury, Susan

    The third book in a series of natural science handbooks for Alaskan students focuses on Alaskan plantlife. The first chapter, on trees, gives general information about trees and explains how to identify and locate trees in the three main Alaskan tree families: pine, willow, and birch. The second chapter, on plants, describes 14 kinds of edible…

  13. 40 CFR 408.90 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.90 Section 408.90 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.90 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  14. 40 CFR 408.100 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.100 Section 408.100 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.100 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  15. 40 CFR 408.100 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.100 Section 408.100 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.100 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  16. 40 CFR 408.90 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.90 Section 408.90 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.90 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  17. 40 CFR 408.100 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.100 Section 408.100 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.100 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  18. 40 CFR 408.90 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.90 Section 408.90 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.90 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  19. 40 CFR 408.100 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.100 Section 408.100 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.100 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  20. 40 CFR 408.90 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.90 Section 408.90 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.90 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  1. 40 CFR 408.100 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.100 Section 408.100 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.100 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  2. 40 CFR 408.90 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. 408.90 Section 408.90 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Shrimp Processing Subcategory § 408.90 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan shrimp processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  3. 40 CFR 408.200 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.200 Section 408.200 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.200 Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  4. 40 CFR 408.200 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.200 Section 408.200 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.200 Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  5. 40 CFR 408.200 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.200 Section 408.200 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.200 Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  6. 40 CFR 408.200 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.200 Section 408.200 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.200 Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  7. 40 CFR 408.200 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.200 Section 408.200 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.200 Applicability; description of the Alaskan bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart are...

  8. American Indian Policy Review Commission Special Joint Task Force Report on Alaskan Native Issues.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Congress of the U.S. Washington, DC. American Indian Policy Review Commission.

    Impact of the Alaskan Native Claims Settlement Act (ANCSA) on Alaskan Natives, particularly at village levels, is the focus of a joint task force report on Alaskan Native issues. Prepared for the American Indian Policy Review Commission, the report is the work of representatives from task forces on tribal government, federal, state, and tribal…

  9. 40 CFR 408.50 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.50 Section 408.50 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.50 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  10. 40 CFR 408.50 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.50 Section 408.50 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.50 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  11. 40 CFR 408.50 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.50 Section 408.50 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.50 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  12. 40 CFR 408.50 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.50 Section 408.50 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.50 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  13. 40 CFR 408.50 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.50 Section 408.50 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.50 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  14. 40 CFR 408.320 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ...-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. 408.320 Section 408.320 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Herring Fillet Processing Subcategory § 408.320 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  15. 40 CFR 408.320 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ...-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. 408.320 Section 408.320 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Herring Fillet Processing Subcategory § 408.320 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  16. 40 CFR 408.320 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ...-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. 408.320 Section 408.320 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Herring Fillet Processing Subcategory § 408.320 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  17. 40 CFR 408.310 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. 408.310 Section 408.310 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Herring Fillet Processing Subcategory § 408.310 Applicability; description of the Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  18. 40 CFR 408.310 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. 408.310 Section 408.310 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Herring Fillet Processing Subcategory § 408.310 Applicability; description of the Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  19. 40 CFR 408.310 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. 408.310 Section 408.310 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Herring Fillet Processing Subcategory § 408.310 Applicability; description of the Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  20. 40 CFR 408.320 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ...-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. 408.320 Section 408.320 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Herring Fillet Processing Subcategory § 408.320 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  1. 40 CFR 408.310 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. 408.310 Section 408.310 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Herring Fillet Processing Subcategory § 408.310 Applicability; description of the Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  2. 40 CFR 408.310 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. 408.310 Section 408.310 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Herring Fillet Processing Subcategory § 408.310 Applicability; description of the Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  3. 40 CFR 408.320 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ...-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. 408.320 Section 408.320 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Herring Fillet Processing Subcategory § 408.320 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan herring fillet processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  4. 40 CFR 408.160 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. 408.160 Section 408.160 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Hand-Butchered Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.160 Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  5. 40 CFR 408.170 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. 408.170 Section 408.170 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Mechanized Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.170 Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  6. 40 CFR 408.160 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. 408.160 Section 408.160 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Hand-Butchered Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.160 Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  7. 40 CFR 408.170 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. 408.170 Section 408.170 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Mechanized Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.170 Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  8. 40 CFR 408.160 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. 408.160 Section 408.160 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Hand-Butchered Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.160 Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  9. 40 CFR 408.160 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. 408.160 Section 408.160 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Hand-Butchered Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.160 Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  10. 40 CFR 408.170 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. 408.170 Section 408.170 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Mechanized Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.170 Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  11. 40 CFR 408.170 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. 408.170 Section 408.170 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Mechanized Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.170 Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  12. 40 CFR 408.160 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. 408.160 Section 408.160 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Hand-Butchered Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.160 Applicability; description of the Alaskan hand-butchered salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  13. 40 CFR 408.170 - Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. 408.170 Section 408.170 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Alaskan Mechanized Salmon Processing Subcategory § 408.170 Applicability; description of the Alaskan mechanized salmon processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  14. Recovery of arctic tundra from thermal erosion disturbance is constrained by nutrient accumulation: a modeling analysis.

    PubMed

    Pearce, A R; Rastetter, E B; Kwiatkowski, B L; Bowden, W B; Mack, M C; Jiang, Y

    2015-07-01

    Abstract. We calibrated the Multiple Element Limitation (MEL) model to Alaskan arctic tundra to simulate recovery of thermal erosion features (TEFs) caused by permafrost thaw and mass wasting. TEFs could significantly alter regional carbon (C) and nutrient budgets because permafrost soils contain large stocks of soil organic matter (SOM) and TEFs are expected to become more frequent as the climate warms. We simulated recovery following TEF stabilization and did not address initial, short-term losses of C and nutrients during TEF formation. To capture the variability among and within TEFs, we modeled a range of post-stabilization conditions by varying the initial size of SOM stocks and nutrient supply rates. Simulations indicate that nitrogen (N) losses after the TEF stabilizes are small, but phosphorus (P) losses continue. Vegetation biomass recovered 90% of its undisturbed C, N, and P stocks in 100 years using nutrients mineralized from SOM. Because of low litter inputs but continued decomposition, younger SOM continued to be lost for 10 years after the TEF began to recover, but recovered to about 84% of its undisturbed amount in 100 years. The older recalcitrant SOM in mineral soil continued to be lost throughout the 100-year simulation. Simulations suggest that biomass recovery depended on the amount of SOM remaining after disturbance. Recovery was initially limited by the photosynthetic capacity of vegetation but became co-limited by N and P once a plant canopy developed. Biomass and SOM recovery was enhanced by increasing nutrient supplies, but the magnitude, source, and controls on these supplies are poorly understood. Faster mineralization of nutrients from SOM (e.g., by warming) enhanced vegetation recovery but delayed recovery of SOM. Taken together, these results suggest that although vegetation and surface SOM on TEFs recovered quickly (25 and 100 years, respectively), the recovery of deep, mineral soil SOM took centuries and represented a major

  15. Thematic mapper study of Alaskan ophiolites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bird, John M.

    1988-01-01

    The two principle objectives of the project Thematic Mapper Study of Alaskan Ophiolites were to further develop techniques for producing geologic maps, and to study the tectonics of the ophiolite terrains of the Brooks Range and Ruby Geanticline of northern Alaska. Ophiolites, sections of oceanic lithosphere emplaced along island arcs and continental margins, are important to the understanding of mountain belt evolution. Ophiolites also provide an opportunity to study the structural, lithologic, and geochemical characteristics of ocean lithosphere, yielding a better understanding of the processes forming lithosphere. The first part of the report is a description of the methods and results of the TM mapping and gravity modeling. The second part includes papers being prepared for publication. These papers are the following: (1) an analysis of basalt spectral variations; (2) a study of basalt geochemical variations; (3) an examination of the cooling history of the ophiolites using radiometric data; (4) an analysis of shortening produced by thrusting during the Brooks Range orogeny; and (5) a study of an ophiolite using digital aeromagnetic and topographic data. Additional papers are in preparation.

  16. Phenological response of tundra plants to background climate variation tested using the International Tundra Experiment.

    PubMed

    Oberbauer, S F; Elmendorf, S C; Troxler, T G; Hollister, R D; Rocha, A V; Bret-Harte, M S; Dawes, M A; Fosaa, A M; Henry, G H R; Høye, T T; Jarrad, F C; Jónsdóttir, I S; Klanderud, K; Klein, J A; Molau, U; Rixen, C; Schmidt, N M; Shaver, G R; Slider, R T; Totland, Ø; Wahren, C-H; Welker, J M

    2013-08-19

    The rapidly warming temperatures in high-latitude and alpine regions have the potential to alter the phenology of Arctic and alpine plants, affecting processes ranging from food webs to ecosystem trace gas fluxes. The International Tundra Experiment (ITEX) was initiated in 1990 to evaluate the effects of expected rapid changes in temperature on tundra plant phenology, growth and community changes using experimental warming. Here, we used the ITEX control data to test the phenological responses to background temperature variation across sites spanning latitudinal and moisture gradients. The dataset overall did not show an advance in phenology; instead, temperature variability during the years sampled and an absence of warming at some sites resulted in mixed responses. Phenological transitions of high Arctic plants clearly occurred at lower heat sum thresholds than those of low Arctic and alpine plants. However, sensitivity to temperature change was similar among plants from the different climate zones. Plants of different communities and growth forms differed for some phenological responses. Heat sums associated with flowering and greening appear to have increased over time. These results point to a complex suite of changes in plant communities and ecosystem function in high latitudes and elevations as the climate warms.

  17. Vegetation shifts observed in arctic tundra 17 years after fire

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Barrett, Kirsten; Rocha, Adrian V.; van de Weg, Martine Janet; Shaver, Gaius

    2012-01-01

    With anticipated climate change, tundra fires are expected to occur more frequently in the future, but data on the long-term effects of fire on tundra vegetation composition are scarce. This study addresses changes in vegetation structure that have persisted for 17 years after a tundra fire on the North Slope of Alaska. Fire-related shifts in vegetation composition were assessed from remote-sensing imagery and ground observations of the burn scar and an adjacent control site. Early-season remotely sensed imagery from the burn scar exhibits a low vegetation index compared with the control site, whereas the late-season signal is slightly higher. The range and maximum vegetation index are greater in the burn scar, although the mean annual values do not differ among the sites. Ground observations revealed a greater abundance of moss in the unburned site, which may account for the high early growing season normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) anomaly relative to the burn. The abundance of graminoid species and an absence of Betula nana in the post-fire tundra sites may also be responsible for the spectral differences observed in the remotely sensed imagery. The partial replacement of tundra by graminoid-dominated ecosystems has been predicted by the ALFRESCO model of disturbance, climate and vegetation succession.

  18. Habitat selection by tundra swans on Northern Alaska breeding grounds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Earnst, Susan L.; Rothe, T.

    2004-01-01

    Habitat selection by the Tundra Swan (Cygnus columbianus columbianus) was evaluated on the Colville River Delta prior to oil field development (1982-1989). Tundra Swan territories comprised a lake, used for refuge and foraging, and terrestrial habitats and ponds near the lakea??s perimeter used for foraging and nesting. Tundra swan sightings from early and late summer aerial surveys were used to investigate habitat selection at the territory and within-territory scale. At the territory or lake scale, swan sightings/lake increased with lake size, and increased from discrete to tapped (i.e., connected to a river channel) to drained lakes within size categories. Overall, 49% of the variation in swan sightings/lake was explained by lake size and type, a size-x-type interaction term, and the proportion of lake perimeter comprised of Halophytic Ponds and Halophytic Wet Meadows. At the within-territory or within-lake scale, foraging swans significantly selected Halophytic Ponds, Halophytic Wet Meadows, and Fresh Ponds relative to Uplands; nesting swans significantly selected Halophytic Ponds and significantly avoided Fresh Wet Meadows relative to Uplands. Vegetation sampling indicated that sites used by Tundra Swans on river channels and tapped lakes were significantly more likely to have Sheathed Pondweed (Potamogeton vaginatus) than control sites. The three major components of Tundra Swan diet were Carex sedges, Sheathed Pondweed, and algae, together comprising 85% of identifiable plant fragments in feces.

  19. The Changing Seasonality of Tundra Nutrient Cycling: Implications for Arctic Ecosystem Function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weintraub, M. N.; Steltzer, H.; Sullivan, P.; Schimel, J.; Wallenstein, M. D.; Darrouzet-Nardi, A.; Segal, A. D.

    2011-12-01

    Arctic soils contain large stores of carbon (C) and may act as a significant CO2 source with warming. However, the key to understanding tundra soil processes is nitrogen (N), as both plant growth and decomposition are N limited. However, current models of tundra ecosystems assume that while N limits plant growth, C limits decomposition. In addition, N availability is strongly seasonal with relatively high concentrations early in the growing season followed by a pronounced crash. We need to understand the controls on this seasonality to predict responses to climate change, but there are multiple questions that need answers: 1) What causes the seasonality in N? 2) Does microbial activity switch seasonally between C and N limitation? 3) How will a lengthening of the growing season alter overall ecosystem C and N dynamics, as a result of differential extension of the periods before and after the nutrient crash? We hypothesized that microbial activity is C limited early in the growing season, when N availability is higher and root exudate C is unavailable, and that microbial activity becomes N limited in response to plant N uptake and immobilization stimulated by root C. To address these questions we are conducting an accelerated snow-melt X warming field experiment in an Alaskan moist acidic arctic tundra community, and following plant and soil dynamics. Changes in the timing of C and N interactions in the different treatments will enable us to develop an enhanced mechanistic understanding of why the nutrient crash occurs and what the implications are for a lengthening of the arctic growing season. In 2010 we successfully accelerated snowmelt by 4 days. Both earlier snowmelt and warming accelerated early season plant life history events, with a few exceptions. However, responses to the combined treatment could not always be predicted from single factor effects. End of season life history events occurred later in response to the treatments, again with a few exceptions

  20. Strength and deformation characteristics of Alaskan offshore silts

    SciTech Connect

    Fleming, L.N.

    1985-01-01

    A comprehensive series of undrained shear tests were performed on representative samples of Alaskan silts in both the normally consolidated and overconsolidated state. The type of tests performed were triaxial compression and extension, torvane and miniature laboratory vane tests. It was found that the Alaskan silt exhibited dilative behavior during undrained shear. Also, the silt is highly anisotropic with respect to the stress-strain characteristics and the undrained shear strength. Sample disturbance reduced the measured strength in the unconsolidated undrained tests. The normalized strength parameter was shown to vary from one silt to another. The importance of evaluating the properties of each new silt deposit are described.

  1. Long-term trends and sources of organochlorine contamination in Canadian tundra Peregrine Falcons, Falco peregrinus tundrius.

    PubMed

    Johnstone, R M; Court, G S; Fesser, A C; Bradley, D M; Oliphant, L W; MacNeil, J D

    1996-01-01

    Levels of eggshell thinning, and organochlorine residues in egg contents, blood plasma of adults and juveniles, tissue samples, and prey species were determined for a population of migratory Peregrine Falcons (Falco peregrinus tundrius) breeding in the Canadian Arctic. Temporal trends were assessed by comparing data collected during 1991-1994, with data from 1982-1986, for the same population. Shells (n=54) from 1991-1994 averaged 15% thinner than eggs produced prior to the introduction of DDT. No improvement in shell thickness was detected between decades. Mean DDE residue levels in eggs showed a decline from 7.6 mg kg (1982-1986) to 4.5 mg kg (1991-1994), but there was no significant change in SigmaPCB residues. Moreover, the proportion of clutches with eggs exceeding critical SigmaPCB, DDE, and dieldrin residue levels (10%) did not change between decades. Relative to Greenland and Alaskan populations, F. p. tundrius at Rankin Inlet show high levels of organochlorine contamination and little reduction in residues over the last decade. These Tundra Peregrines continue to be exposed to organochlorines in Latin America; however, results also link relatively high levels in the study population with waterfowl species that do not leave Canada in winter.

  2. Future distribution of tundra refugia in northern Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hope, Andrew G.; Waltari, Eric; Payer, David C.; Cook, Joseph A.; Talbot, Sandra L.

    2013-01-01

    Climate change in the Arctic is a growing concern for natural resource conservation and management as a result of accelerated warming and associated shifts in the distribution and abundance of northern species. We introduce a predictive framework for assessing the future extent of Arctic tundra and boreal biomes in northern Alaska. We use geo-referenced museum specimens to predict the velocity of distributional change into the next century and compare predicted tundra refugial areas with current land-use. The reliability of predicted distributions, including differences between fundamental and realized niches, for two groups of species is strengthened by fossils and genetic signatures of demographic shifts. Evolutionary responses to environmental change through the late Quaternary are generally consistent with past distribution models. Predicted future refugia overlap managed areas and indicate potential hotspots for tundra diversity. To effectively assess future refugia, variable responses among closely related species to climate change warrants careful consideration of both evolutionary and ecological histories.

  3. Future distribution of tundra refugia in northern Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hope, Andrew G.; Waltari, Eric; Payer, David C.; Cook, Joseph A.; Talbot, Sandra L.

    2013-10-01

    Climate change in the Arctic is a growing concern for natural resource conservation and management as a result of accelerated warming and associated shifts in the distribution and abundance of northern species. We introduce a predictive framework for assessing the future extent of Arctic tundra and boreal biomes in northern Alaska. We use geo-referenced museum specimens to predict the velocity of distributional change into the next century and compare predicted tundra refugial areas with current land-use. The reliability of predicted distributions, including differences between fundamental and realized niches, for two groups of species is strengthened by fossils and genetic signatures of demographic shifts. Evolutionary responses to environmental change through the late Quaternary are generally consistent with past distribution models. Predicted future refugia overlap managed areas and indicate potential hotspots for tundra diversity. To effectively assess future refugia, variable responses among closely related species to climate change warrants careful consideration of both evolutionary and ecological histories.

  4. A Comparative Review of North American Tundra Delineations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Silver, Kirk C.; Carroll, Mark

    2013-01-01

    Recent profound changes have been observed in the Arctic environment, including record low sea ice extents and high latitude greening. Studying the Arctic and how it is changing is an important element of climate change science. The Tundra, an ecoregion of the Arctic, is directly related to climate change due to its effects on the snow ice feedback mechanism and greenhouse gas cycling. Like all ecoregions, the Tundra border is shifting, yet studies and policies require clear delineation of boundaries. There are many options for ecoregion classification systems, as well as resources for creating custom maps. To help decision makers identify the best classification system possible, we present a review of North American Tundra ecoregion delineations and further explore the methodologies, purposes, limitations, and physical properties of five common ecoregion classification systems. We quantitatively compare the corresponding maps by area using a geographic information system.

  5. Policy Statements on Collection Development. A Compendium from Alaskan Libraries.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCabe, Carol, Ed.

    Developed as part of a statewide coordinated collection development effort, this document is a compendium of the narrative statements of collection development policies from 19 Alaskan university, public, school, and special libraries. Only the basic narrative plus any unique appendices are included for each policy, and some of the policies are…

  6. Village Science: A Resource Handbook for Rural Alaskan Teachers.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dick, Alan

    A resource handbook for rural Alaskan teachers covers village science, to make basic science concepts relevant to the physical environment in villages. Material is intended for use as filler for weeks that come up short on science materials, to provide stimulation for students who cannot see the relevance of science in their lives, and to help…

  7. Definition of Alaskan Aviation Training Requirements. Final Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mitchell, M. K.; And Others

    Because of high accident rates and the unique conditions faced in Arctic flying, a project was conducted to develop a training program for airline pilots flying over Alaska. Data were gathered, through the critical incident method in conjunction with traditional job-analysis procedures, about how experienced Alaskan pilots learned to cope with the…

  8. Rural Alaskan Schools: Educational Specifications. Reprinted September, 1971.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alaska State Dept. of Education, Juneau. Office of Public Information and Publications.

    The educational specifications of facilities for rural Alaskan schools are given in this 1964 report. Alaska's 6 recognized geographic regions are briefly described with consideration to topography, climate, permafrost conditions, latitude position, and transportation difficulties which present problems in planning schools. Since the school design…

  9. Standard Implications: Alaskans Reflect on a Movement To Change Teaching.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Calkins, Annie, Ed.; Christian, Scott, Ed.

    In this anthology, rural Alaskan English teachers in the Bread Loaf Rural Teacher Network describe their experiences implementing new state education standards while continuing their commitment to learner-centered and place-based practice. The book presents narratives about teaching grounded in knowledge and understanding of students and…

  10. RESIDUAL MUTAGENICITY OF THE ALASKAN OIL SPILL ORGANICS

    EPA Science Inventory

    RESIDUAL MUTAGENICITY OF THE ALASKAN OIL SPILL ORGANICS. L.D.

    The Exxon Valdez, on March 24, 1989, spilled approximately eleven million gallons of Prudhoe Bay crude oil into the waters of Prince William Sound. Approximately 300 miles of
    contaminated beach are potential...

  11. Effects of the Oil Spill on Alaskan Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oldaker, Lawrence Lee

    Oil-industry-produced revenues, help finance Alaskan state and local governmental services including education. Capital losses incurred by the Exxon Corporation and by commerical fisheries as a consequence of the Exxon Valdez oil spill caused an economic recession, the result being diminished financing for a number of governmental programs and…

  12. STARS (Secondary Training for Alaskan Rural Students): Science. Draft Copy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shepard, Gary; Costello, Bill

    STARS (Secondary Training for Alaskan Rural Students) materials resulted from extensive rewriting of the Vocational Adult Secondary Training (VAST) materials produced by the British Columbia Department of Education, after those materials had been used with the 9th and 10th graders on Kodiak Island. Revision was done by teachers who had been using…

  13. Expansion of forest stands into tundra in the Noatak National Preserve, northwest Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Suarez, F.; Binkley, D.; Kaye, M.W.; Stottlemyer, R.

    1999-01-01

    Temperatures across the northern regions of North America have been increasing for 150 years, and forests have responded to this increase. In the Noatak National Preserve in Alaska, white spruce (Picea glauca [Moench] Voss) forests reach their northern limit, occurring primarily on well-drained sites and as gallery forests along streams. Rolling plateaus of tundra separate the white spruce forests into disjunct stands. We examined patterns of tree age, tree growth, and tree encroachment into tundra ecosystems in six stands along the Agashashok River. Warming over the past 150 years appears to have increased tree growth and resulted in forest expansion into adjacent tundra ecosystems. The forest/tundra ecotone shifted by about 80 to 100 m into the tundra in the past 200 years, as evidenced by declining maximum tree age with distance towards the tundra. The decadal-scale pattern of tree establishment at the farthest extent of trees into the tundra (the tundra-forest ecotone) correlated with the detrended growth index for trees within the forests; climate conditions that led to higher tree growth appeared to foster tree establishment in the tundra. This recent forest expansion has occurred across topographic boundaries, from well-drained soils on slopes onto poorly drained, flatter areas of tundra. Further expansion of the forests may be limited by more severe wind exposure and poor drainage that make the majority of tundra less suitable for trees.

  14. Photosynthetic response of Eriophorum vaginatum to in situ shrub shading in tussock tundra of northern Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anderson-Smith, A.; Pattison, R.; Sullivan, P.; Welker, J. M.

    2009-12-01

    Eriophorum vaginatum (Cotton Grass) is an important component of moist acidic tussock tundra, a plant community that appears to be undergoing changes in species composition associated with climate warming. This species is one of the most abundant in the arctic tundra, and provides important forage for caribou in their calving grounds on the Arctic Coastal Plain and along their migratory route through the foothills of Alaska. Recently, remote sensing data, repeat photography and plot-level measurements have indicated that shrub abundance is increasing while Eriophorum abundance is either constant or decreasing. One possible explanation for the reduction of Eriophorum while Betula nana is increasing, is that lower light levels in the taller Betula canopy may be constraining Eriophorum photosynthesis and subsequently reducing plant growth. This study measured the effect of shading on the light response of Eriphorum leaf photosynthesis in four different sites near Toolik Lake Alaska during the summer of 2009. Measurements were taken in: 1) a shrub patch within the drift zone of the ITEX long term snow fence experiment, 2) an LTER shade house (50% shading) built in 1989, 3) water track site 1 and water track site 2 (i.e. control areas with no experimental manipulations) Average photosynthetic rates for Eriophorum at a light level of 800 PAR varied from 3.8 to 10.9 umol m-2 s-1 and were not significantly different in shaded and unshaded areas. This study indicates that shading by shrubs does not appear to be altering the light response of Eriophorum nor does long-term shading by itself eliminate Eriophorum from the community. An alternative explanation for the decline of Eriophorum while Betula increases in abundance under changing climates may be related to plant and soil mineral nutrition, plant water relations or biotic processes involving herbivores.

  15. METHANE HYDRATE PRODUCTION FROM ALASKAN PERMAFROST

    SciTech Connect

    Ali Kadaster; Bill Liddell; Tommy Thompson; Thomas Williams; Michael Niedermayr

    2005-02-01

    Natural-gas hydrates have been encountered beneath the permafrost and considered a nuisance by the oil and gas industry for years. Engineers working in Russia, Canada and the USA have documented numerous drilling problems, including kicks and uncontrolled gas releases, in arctic regions. Information has been generated in laboratory studies pertaining to the extent, volume, chemistry and phase behavior of gas hydrates. Scientists studying hydrate potential agree that the potential is great--on the North Slope of Alaska alone, it has been estimated at 590 TCF. However, little information has been obtained on physical samples taken from actual rock containing hydrates. This gas-hydrate project was a cost-shared partnership between Maurer Technology, Noble Corporation, Anadarko Petroleum, and the U.S. Department of Energy's Methane Hydrate R&D program. The purpose of the project is to build on previous and ongoing R&D in the area of onshore hydrate deposition to identify, quantify and predict production potential for hydrates located on the North Slope of Alaska. The work scope included drilling and coring a well (Hot Ice No. 1) on Anadarko leases beginning in FY 2003 and completed in 2004. During the first drilling season, operations were conducted at the site between January 28, 2003 to April 30, 2003. The well was spudded and drilled to a depth of 1403 ft. Due to the onset of warmer weather, work was then suspended for the season. Operations at the site were continued after the tundra was re-opened the following season. Between January 12, 2004 and March 19, 2004, the well was drilled and cored to a final depth of 2300 ft. An on-site core analysis laboratory was built and implemented for determining physical characteristics of the hydrates and surrounding rock. The well was drilled from a new Anadarko Arctic Platform that has a minimal footprint and environmental impact. Final efforts of the project are to correlate geology, geophysics, logs, and drilling and

  16. METHANE HYDRATE PRODUCTION FROM ALASKAN PERMAFROST

    SciTech Connect

    Steve Runyon; Mike Globe; Kent Newsham; Robert Kleinberg; Doug Griffin

    2005-02-01

    Natural-gas hydrates have been encountered beneath the permafrost and considered a nuisance by the oil and gas industry for years. Engineers working in Russia, Canada and the USA have documented numerous drilling problems, including kicks and uncontrolled gas releases, in arctic regions. Information has been generated in laboratory studies pertaining to the extent, volume, chemistry and phase behavior of gas hydrates. Scientists studying hydrate potential agree that the potential is great--on the North Slope of Alaska alone, it has been estimated at 590 TCF. However, little information has been obtained on physical samples taken from actual rock containing hydrates. This gas-hydrate project was a cost-shared partnership between Maurer Technology, Noble Corporation, Anadarko Petroleum, and the U.S. Department of Energy's Methane Hydrate R&D program. The purpose of the project is to build on previous and ongoing R&D in the area of onshore hydrate deposition to identify, quantify and predict production potential for hydrates located on the North Slope of Alaska. The work scope included drilling and coring a well (Hot Ice No. 1) on Anadarko leases beginning in FY 2003 and completed in 2004. During the first drilling season, operations were conducted at the site between January 28, 2003 to April 30, 2003. The well was spudded and drilled to a depth of 1403 ft. Due to the onset of warmer weather, work was then suspended for the season. Operations at the site were continued after the tundra was re-opened the following season. Between January 12, 2004 and March 19, 2004, the well was drilled and cored to a final depth of 2300 ft. An on-site core analysis laboratory was built and utilized for determining the physical characteristics of the hydrates and surrounding rock. The well was drilled from a new Anadarko Arctic Platform that has a minimal footprint and environmental impact. The final efforts of the project are to correlate geology, geophysics, logs, and drilling and

  17. Shrub expansion in tundra ecosystems: dynamics, impacts and research priorities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers-Smith, Isla H.; Forbes, Bruce C.; Wilmking, Martin; Hallinger, Martin; Lantz, Trevor; Blok, Daan; Tape, Ken D.; Macias-Fauria, Marc; Sass-Klaassen, Ute; Lévesque, Esther; Boudreau, Stéphane; Ropars, Pascale; Hermanutz, Luise; Trant, Andrew; Siegwart Collier, Laura; Weijers, Stef; Rozema, Jelte; Rayback, Shelly A.; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Schaepman-Strub, Gabriela; Wipf, Sonja; Rixen, Christian; Ménard, Cécile B.; Venn, Susanna; Goetz, Scott; Andreu-Hayles, Laia; Elmendorf, Sarah; Ravolainen, Virve; Welker, Jeffrey; Grogan, Paul; Epstein, Howard E.; Hik, David S.

    2011-12-01

    Recent research using repeat photography, long-term ecological monitoring and dendrochronology has documented shrub expansion in arctic, high-latitude and alpine tundra ecosystems. Here, we (1) synthesize these findings, (2) present a conceptual framework that identifies mechanisms and constraints on shrub increase, (3) explore causes, feedbacks and implications of the increased shrub cover in tundra ecosystems, and (4) address potential lines of investigation for future research. Satellite observations from around the circumpolar Arctic, showing increased productivity, measured as changes in ‘greenness’, have coincided with a general rise in high-latitude air temperatures and have been partly attributed to increases in shrub cover. Studies indicate that warming temperatures, changes in snow cover, altered disturbance regimes as a result of permafrost thaw, tundra fires, and anthropogenic activities or changes in herbivory intensity are all contributing to observed changes in shrub abundance. A large-scale increase in shrub cover will change the structure of tundra ecosystems and alter energy fluxes, regional climate, soil-atmosphere exchange of water, carbon and nutrients, and ecological interactions between species. In order to project future rates of shrub expansion and understand the feedbacks to ecosystem and climate processes, future research should investigate the species or trait-specific responses of shrubs to climate change including: (1) the temperature sensitivity of shrub growth, (2) factors controlling the recruitment of new individuals, and (3) the relative influence of the positive and negative feedbacks involved in shrub expansion.

  18. [The gene pool of native inhabitants of the Samburg tundra].

    PubMed

    Osipova, L P; Posukh, O L; Ivakin, E A; Kriukov, Iu A; Karafet, T M

    1996-06-01

    This study continues a series of investigations of the gene pool of native Siberian ethnic groups. In a population of Tundra Nentsi (Northern Samoyeds) and a group of Komi-Zyryans (Finno-Ugrian) (Samburg settlement, Tyumenskaya oblast, Yamalo-Nenetskii Autonomous okrug), gene markers of the following genetic systems were studied: blood groups (ABO, MNSs, Rhesus, Kell, Duffy, and P), erythrocyte acid phosphatase (AcP), phosphoglucomutase 1 (PGM 1), haptoglobin (Hp), and transferrin (Tf). The population of Samburg Tundra Nentsi was shown to have a close genetic relationship with the "core" of the Forest Nentsi population. In Northern Samoyeds, three carriers of the rare allele K (blood group Kell) were found for the first time. It is suggested that this allele was transferred into the population of Tundra Nentsi from Komi. Samburg Tundra Nentsi are found to have the maximum frequency of the allele PGM 1 (Posphoglucomutase 1) among aboriginal populations of northern Asia. Analysis of original data and the literature revealed a significant genetic distance between the Komi and Northern Samoyed populations. It was shown that Samburg Komi occupy an intermediate position between the clusters of Nenets populations and Finno-Ugrians (Komi) living in Komi Republic.

  19. A Microwave Radiance Assimilation Study for a Tundra Snowpack

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kim, Edward; Durand, Michael; Margulis, Steve; England, Anthony

    2010-01-01

    Recent studies have begun exploring the assimilation of microwave radiances for the modeling and retrieval of snow properties. At a point scale, and for short durations (i week), radiance assimilation (RA) results are encouraging. However, in order to determine how practical RA might be for snow retrievals when applied over longer durations, larger spatial scales, and/or different snow types, we must expand the scope of the tests. In this paper we use coincident microwave radiance measurements and station data from a tundra site on the North Slope of Alaska. The field data are from the 3rd Radio-brightness Energy Balance Experiment (REBEX-3) carried out in 1994-95 by the University of Michigan. This dataset will provide a test of RA over months instead of one week, and for a very different type of snow than previous snow RA studies. We will address the following questions: flow well can a snowpack physical model (SM), forced with local weather, match measured conditions for a tundra snowpack?; How well can a microwave emission model, driven by the snowpack model, match measured microwave brightnesses for a tundra snowpack?; How well does RA increase or decrease the fidelity of estimates of snow depth and temperatures for a tundra snowpack?

  20. DOES NITROGEN PARTITIONING PROMOTE SPECIES DIVERSITY IN ARCTIC TUSSOCK TUNDRA?

    EPA Science Inventory

    We used 15N soil-labeling techniques to examine how the dominant species in a N-limited, tussock tundra plant community partitioned soil N, and how such partitioning may contribute to community organization. The five most productive species were well differentiated with respect ...

  1. 14. VIEW FROM TUNDRA CURVES (ON TRAIL RIDGE ROAD) SHOWING ...

    Library of Congress Historic Buildings Survey, Historic Engineering Record, Historic Landscapes Survey

    14. VIEW FROM TUNDRA CURVES (ON TRAIL RIDGE ROAD) SHOWING FALL RIVER ROAD RISING FROM BENEATH CHAPIN PASS (AT EXTREME RIGHT) TO FALL RIVER PASS (FAR LEFT). - Fall River Road, Between Estes Park & Fall River Pass, Estes Park, Larimer County, CO

  2. Methanogenesis at low temperatures by microflora of tundra wetland soil.

    PubMed

    Kotsyurbenko, O R; Nozhevnikova, A N; Soloviova, T I; Zavarzin, G A

    1996-01-01

    Active methanogenesis from organic matter contained in soil samples from tundra wetland occurred even at 6 degrees C. Methane was the only end product in balanced microbial community with H2/CO2 as a substrate, besides acetate was produced as an intermediate at temperatures below 10 degrees C. The activity of different microbial groups of methanogenic community in the temperature range of 6-28 degrees C was investigated using 5% of tundra soil as inoculum. Anaerobic microflora of tundra wetland fermented different organic compounds with formation of hydrogen, volatile fatty acids (VFA) and alcohols. Methane was produced at the second step. Homoacetogenic and methanogenic bacteria competed for such substrates as hydrogen, formate, carbon monoxide and methanol. Acetogens out competed methanogens in an excess of substrate and low density of microbial population. Kinetic analysis of the results confirmed the prevalence of hydrogen acetogenesis on methanogenesis. Pure culture of acetogenic bacteria was isolated at 6 degrees C. Dilution of tundra soil and supply with the excess of substrate disbalanced the methanoigenic microbial community. It resulted in accumulation of acetate and other VFA. In balanced microbial community obviously autotrophic methanogens keep hydrogen concentration below a threshold for syntrophic degradation of VFA. Accumulation of acetate- and H2/CO2-utilising methanogens should be very important in methanogenic microbial community operating at low temperatures. PMID:8678482

  3. Holocene coastal glaciation of Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calkin, Parker E.; Wiles, Gregory C.; Barclay, David J.

    2001-01-01

    Holocene fluctuations of the three cirque glaciers on the Seward Peninsula and five groups of tidewater- and land-terminating glaciers along the northernmost Gulf of Alaska, provide a proxy record of late Holocene climatic change. Furthermore, the movements of the coastal glaciers were relevant to late Holocene native American migration. The earliest expansion was recorded about 6850 yr BP by Hubbard Glacier at the head of Yakutat Bay in the Gulf of Alaska; however, its down-fjord advance to the bay mouth was delayed until ˜2700 BP. Similarly, expansions of the Icy Bay, Bering, and McCarty glaciers occurred near their present termini by ˜3600-3000 BP, compatible with marked cooling and precipitation increases suggested by the Alaskan pollen record. Decrease in glacier activity ˜2000 BP was succeeded by advances of Gulf coastal glaciers between 1500 and 1300 BP, correlative with early Medieval expansions across the Northern Hemisphere. A Medieval Optimum, encompassing at least a few centuries prior to AD 1200 is recognized by general retreat of land-terminating glaciers, but not of all tidewater glaciers. Little Ice Age advances of land-based glaciers, many dated with the precision of tree-ring cross-dating, were centered on the middle 13th or early 15th centuries, the middle 17th and the last half of the 19th century A.D. Strong synchrony of these events across coastal Alaska is evident.

  4. Organochlorine residues in eggs of Alaskan seabirds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ohlendorf, H.M.; Bartonek, J.C.; Divoky, G.J.; Klass, E.

    1982-01-01

    One egg from each of 440 clutches of eggs of 19 species of Alaskan seabirds collected in 1973-76 was analyzed for organochlorine residues. All eggs contained DDE; 98.9% contained PCB's; 84.3%, oxychlordane; and 82.7%, HCB. Endrin was found in only one egg, but DDD, DDT, dieldrin, heptachlor epoxide, mirex, cis-chlordane (or trans-nonachlor), cis-nonachlor, and toxaphene each occurred in at least 22% of the samples.Concentrations of organochlorines in the samples were generally low. Mean concentrations of eight compounds were highest in eggs of glaucous-winged gulls (Larus glaucescens) from three sites: DDE (5.16 ppm, wet weight), dieldrin (0.214 ppm), oxychlordane (0.251 ppm), and PCB's (3.55 ppm) in eggs from Bogoslof Island; heptachlor epoxide (0.037 ppm), cis-chlordane (0.075 ppm), and HCB (0.188 ppm) in eggs from Buldir Island; and cis-nonachlor (0.026 ppm) in eggs from the Semidi Islands. Highest concentrations of DDD (0.157 ppm), DDT (0.140 ppm), and toxaphene (0.101 ppm) were in eggs of fork-tailed storm-petrel (Oceanodroma furcata) from Buldir Island, and the highest concentration of mirex (0.044 ppm) was in fork-tailed storm-petrel eggs from the Barren Islands.Both frequency of occurrence and concentration of residues in the eggs differed geographically and by species, apparently reflecting non-uniform distribution of organochlorines in the environment, dissimilar feeding habits and migration patterns of the species, or metabolic differences among the species.The overall frequency of residue occurrence was highest in eggs from the Pribilof Islands, but only three species were represented in the samples collected there. Detectable residues also were more frequent in eggs from the Gulf of Alaska colonies than elsewhere, and the lowest frequency was in eggs from nesting colonies on or near the Seward Peninsula. Regionally, concentrations of DDE and PCB's were usually higher than average in eggs from the Gulf of Alaska and lower than average in eggs from the

  5. Wintertime ecosystem respiration shifts tundra from carbon sink to carbon source at tundra warming experiment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Webb, E.; Schuur, E. A.; Natali, S.; Bracho, R.

    2013-12-01

    Northern latitude ecosystems play a significant role in the global carbon (C) budget due to the roughly 1700 Pg of C stored in permafrost soils. As high latitudes warm, previously frozen C is expected to decompose, thereby increasing CO2 fluxes to the atmosphere and potentially creating a positive feedback to climate warming. While warming has been shown to increase plant C uptake during the growing season, these seasonal C gains may be offset on an annual basis by ecosystem respiration (Reco) during the remaining seven months of the year. Here we present research from the Carbon in Permafrost Experimental Heating Research (CiPEHR) project, a tundra ecosystem warming experiment in interior Alaska. We partitioned the non-growing season into three segments: fall (October 1 until first snow), winter (snow-covered period until spring), and spring (snow depth less than 30cm until melt out). During fall, we measured net ecosystem exchange and Reco using a static flux chamber. In winter, we measured Reco using chamber measurements and soda lime. For spring, we modeled fluxes based on known relationships between snow depth and photosynthetic rate of arctic evergreen species. We found that ecosystem warming caused plants to photosynthesize later in fall and increased C uptake during spring but also enhanced respiration during the long winter. We combined these off-season estimates with measurements from growing season auto-chamber data and found that despite the C gained during the growing season, ecosystem warming resulted in net annual C loss for the two years measured. This annual C loss was dependent on the magnitude of wintertime Reco. Our results indicate that snow depth, soil temperature, and day of season are the major determinants of wintertime Reco. Some climate models predict that arctic ecosystems will experience warmer winters with more snow. Thus, despite increased plant productivity during the growing season, we document that increased wintertime temperatures

  6. Summertime N2O, CH4 and CO2 exchanges from a tundra marsh and an upland tundra in maritime Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Renbin; Ma, Dawei; Xu, Hua

    2014-02-01

    This study provides the first concurrent measurements of nitrous oxide (N2O), methane (CH4) and carbon dioxide (CO2) fluxes from a tundra marsh and an upland tundra in maritime Antarctica over the summers of 2007/2008 and 2011/2012. Tundra N2O and CH4 fluxes showed large spatial variations depending on local hydrological regimes. N2O sinks generally occurred at waterlogged marsh sites (-3.0 to 27.5 μg N2O m-2 h-1) whereas relatively dry and mesic sites presented weak or strong N2O sources (2.2-41.6 μg N2O m-2 h-1). Upland tundra sites showed negligible N2O emissions due to low soil TN and NH4+-N contents. Dry/upland tundra sites showed weak to strong CH4 uptake (-4.5 to -85.8 μg CH4 m-2 h-1). The waterlogged sites showed weak to strong CH4 emissions (29.8 μg CH4 m-2 h-1-2.4 mg CH4 m-2 h-1). Both tundra marsh and upland tundra experienced a large net CO2 uptake with the greatest mean CO2 uptake rate (-92.1 mg CO2 m-2 h-1) at dry marsh sites. Mean ecosystem respiration (ER) ranged between 82.5 ± 13.2 and 174.9 ± 25.7 mg CO2 m-2 h-1 at all the sites, and showed a strong exponential correlation (P < 0.001) with 0-10 cm soil temperature. Gross photosynthesis (Pg) was more than two times higher in tundra marsh than in upland tundra due to the difference of vegetation coverage. N2O flux showed a strong negative correlation (P < 0.01) with 0-10 cm soil temperature at the marsh sites, and significant or weak positive correlations with total daily radiation (TDR) and sunlight time (ST). No significant correlation was obtained between CH4 fluxes and environmental variables at tundra marsh and upland tundra sites. There was a significant negative correlation (P < 0.01) between NEE and 0-10 cm mean soil temperature, total daily radiation. Our results indicated that the lowering of water table significantly increased N2O emissions and CH4 consumption, but decreased C loss from the tundra marsh. In the future, the combination of climate warming and frequent precipitation

  7. Hereditary encephalomyelopathy and polyneuropathy in an Alaskan husky.

    PubMed

    Wakshlag, J J; de Lahunta, A

    2009-12-01

    An Alaskan husky puppy was examined for a neurologic disease which began at six weeks of age with generalised paresis that progressed resulting in recumbency by 18 weeks. Thoracic limbs primarily exhibited lower motor neuron signs that included distal muscle atrophy and persistent elbow and carpal flexion that resisted manual extension. Pelvic limb signs primarily exhibited upper motor neuron and general proprioceptive deficits, but also included lower motor neuron signs. Abnormal vocalisation suggested a laryngeal paresis. Histopathologic lesions included a diffuse axonopathy and secondary demyelination in the nerves of the limbs and larynx and a similar bilaterally symmetrical degeneration in the spinal cord white matter suggestive of a dying back axonopathy. In addition, a degenerative process was present in nuclei in the brain stem and cerebellum. Recognition of this disease through clinical and pathologic examination in other related Alaskan Huskies suggested an autosomal recessive inherited disorder.

  8. Revegetation of Alaskan coal mine spoils. Progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Mitchell, W W; Mitchell, G A; McKendrick, J D

    1980-05-23

    Activities initiated after the start of the revegetation project on Alaskan coal mine spoils on September 1, 1979 have consisted mainly of some fall plantings (dormant seedings) and soil and coal spoil samplings and analyses. Because of the late summer start for the project, only a limited amount of field work could be initiated in plant material studies. This consisted of a fall planting at the Usibelli mine site at Healy in interior Alaska. The planting was intended to test the efficacy of seeding in the frost period following the growing season, requiring the seed to remain dormant over winter and to germinate when conditions become favorable in late spring. It also was intended as a comparison of a number of different grasses. Thirty entries were seeded in three replications. Fifteen species of grasses and a clover were included in the trial. The site provided for the trial was on overburden material along a streambed. Among the entries were eight cultivars of introduced grasses, five cultivars of native Alaskan germplasm, one introduced clover cultivar, and sixteen experimental grasses mainly of Alaskan origin.

  9. Diversification of Nitrogen Sources in Various Tundra Vegetation Types in the High Arctic.

    PubMed

    Skrzypek, Grzegorz; Wojtuń, Bronisław; Richter, Dorota; Jakubas, Dariusz; Wojczulanis-Jakubas, Katarzyna; Samecka-Cymerman, Aleksandra

    2015-01-01

    Low nitrogen availability in the high Arctic represents a major constraint for plant growth, which limits the tundra capacity for carbon retention and determines tundra vegetation types. The limited terrestrial nitrogen (N) pool in the tundra is augmented significantly by nesting seabirds, such as the planktivorous Little Auk (Alle alle). Therefore, N delivered by these birds may significantly influence the N cycling in the tundra locally and the carbon budget more globally. Moreover, should these birds experience substantial negative environmental pressure associated with climate change, this will adversely influence the tundra N-budget. Hence, assessment of bird-originated N-input to the tundra is important for understanding biological cycles in polar regions. This study analyzed the stable nitrogen composition of the three main N-sources in the High Arctic and in numerous plants that access different N-pools in ten tundra vegetation types in an experimental catchment in Hornsund (Svalbard). The percentage of the total tundra N-pool provided by birds, ranged from 0-21% in Patterned-ground tundra to 100% in Ornithocoprophilous tundra. The total N-pool utilized by tundra plants in the studied catchment was built in 36% by birds, 38% by atmospheric deposition, and 26% by atmospheric N2-fixation. The stable nitrogen isotope mixing mass balance, in contrast to direct methods that measure actual deposition, indicates the ratio between the actual N-loads acquired by plants from different N-sources. Our results enhance our understanding of the importance of different N-sources in the Arctic tundra and the used methodological approach can be applied elsewhere.

  10. Diversification of Nitrogen Sources in Various Tundra Vegetation Types in the High Arctic

    PubMed Central

    Skrzypek, Grzegorz; Wojtuń, Bronisław; Richter, Dorota; Jakubas, Dariusz; Wojczulanis-Jakubas, Katarzyna; Samecka-Cymerman, Aleksandra

    2015-01-01

    Low nitrogen availability in the high Arctic represents a major constraint for plant growth, which limits the tundra capacity for carbon retention and determines tundra vegetation types. The limited terrestrial nitrogen (N) pool in the tundra is augmented significantly by nesting seabirds, such as the planktivorous Little Auk (Alle alle). Therefore, N delivered by these birds may significantly influence the N cycling in the tundra locally and the carbon budget more globally. Moreover, should these birds experience substantial negative environmental pressure associated with climate change, this will adversely influence the tundra N-budget. Hence, assessment of bird-originated N-input to the tundra is important for understanding biological cycles in polar regions. This study analyzed the stable nitrogen composition of the three main N-sources in the High Arctic and in numerous plants that access different N-pools in ten tundra vegetation types in an experimental catchment in Hornsund (Svalbard). The percentage of the total tundra N-pool provided by birds, ranged from 0–21% in Patterned-ground tundra to 100% in Ornithocoprophilous tundra. The total N-pool utilized by tundra plants in the studied catchment was built in 36% by birds, 38% by atmospheric deposition, and 26% by atmospheric N2-fixation. The stable nitrogen isotope mixing mass balance, in contrast to direct methods that measure actual deposition, indicates the ratio between the actual N-loads acquired by plants from different N-sources. Our results enhance our understanding of the importance of different N-sources in the Arctic tundra and the used methodological approach can be applied elsewhere. PMID:26376204

  11. Seasonal dynamics of previously unknown fungal lineages in tundra soils.

    PubMed

    Schadt, Christopher W; Martin, Andrew P; Lipson, David A; Schmidt, Steven K

    2003-09-01

    The finding that microbial communities are active under snow has changed the estimated global rates of biogeochemical processes beneath seasonal snow packs. We used microbiological and molecular techniques to elucidate the phylogenetic composition of undersnow microbial communities in Colorado, the United States. Here, we show that tundra soil microbial biomass reaches its annual peak under snow, and that fungi account for most of the biomass. Phylogenetic analysis of tundra soil fungi revealed a high diversity of fungi and three novel clades that constitute major new groups of fungi (divergent at the subphylum or class level). An abundance of previously unknown fungi that are active beneath the snow substantially broadens our understanding of both the diversity and biogeochemical functioning of fungi in cold environments.

  12. Natural causes of the tundra-taiga boundary.

    PubMed

    Sveinbjörnsson, Bjartmar; Hofgaard, Annika; Lloyd, Andrea

    2002-08-01

    The tundra-taiga interface is characterized by a change in tree cover or density, tree size and shape, tree growth, and reproduction. Generally, trees get denser, taller, and less damaged as one moves from the tundra into the taiga proper. The environmental covariates and possible mechanisms resulting in these patterns are addressed in the paper. Low seed rain density, lack of safe sites caused by microclimatic variation, low surface substrate moisture, and low soil nutrient availability may limit the density of the tree species. Tree growth may be limited by a short growing season and further diminished, by shoot and root damage reducing carbon and nutrient stores as well as by reducing carbon and nutrient uptake capacities. Positive and negative feedbacks of tree density on tree growth exist at treeline. Increased tree density leads to increased air temperature and decreased wind damage, but also to lower soil temperature, reduced nutrient availability, and greater nutrient competition.

  13. Coastal Prairie

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    ,

    2000-01-01

    The coastal prairie, located along the coastal plain of southwestern Louisiana and southcentral Texas, is the southernmost tip of the tallgrass prairie ecosystem so prevalent in the Midwest. The coastal prairie ecosystem once covered as much as 3.8 million ha (9 million acres); today, more than 99% of this land has been lost to agriculture, range improvement, and urbanization. The remainder is highly fragmented and severely threatened by invasions of exotic species and urban sprawl. In Louisiana, the former 1 million ha of coastal prairie have now been reduced to about 100 ha. In Texas, only about 100,000 ha of coastal prairie remain intact.

  14. Impact of permafrost thaw on Arctic tundra pond geochemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reyes, F.; Lougheed, V.

    2012-12-01

    Increasing evidence indicates the arctic tundra is changing physically, biologically, and chemically due to climate warming. With a warmer climate, permafrost is expected to thaw and influence the chemistry of arctic aquatic ecosystems. However, knowledge is limited on how geochemistry of arctic tundra pond ecosystems will respond. By re-sampling historical IBP ponds in Barrow, AK first sampled in the 1970s, previous studies have shown an increase in water temperature, nutrients and algal biomass through time. Results from this study indicate an increase of Ca, Mg, and Na in the water column, and a decrease in pH relative to the 1970s, suggesting an increased rate and magnitude of carbonate and Mg release. Seasonal trends were also examined to understand what processes, such as mineral weathering, peat decomposition and evaporation, were currently most influential in determining pond geochemistry. An increase in Ca/Na molar ratios, and carbonate and magnesium concentrations indicates that these tundra ponds are experiencing greater carbonate weathering compared to the 1970s and the rate of carbonate weathering increases in ponds as the summer progresses. However, increasing dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentrations originating from peat decomposition are likely neutralizing additional inputs of carbonate, causing pond pH to decrease and exacerbating mineral weathering. A strong positive relationship between element concentrations and active layer pond thaw depth suggests that the origin of these additional solutes is likely from permafrost thaw. Active layer thaw depth has increased substantially over the past 40 years in the IBP ponds. Chloride/Bromide molar ratios and Deuterium/ 18-Oxygen isotope ratios will be used to determine the degree of evaporation occurring in tundra ponds. Ultimately, this study provides evidence for how geochemistry can identify the sources of chemical inputs to Arctic ponds affected by climate change and permafrost thaw.

  15. Analysis of state of vehicular scars on Arctic Tundra, Alaska

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lathram, E. H.

    1974-01-01

    Identification on ERTS images of severe vehicular scars in the northern Alaska tundra suggests that, if such scars are of an intensity or have spread to a dimension such that they can be resolved by ERTS sensors (20 meters), they can be identified and their state monitored by the use of ERTS images. Field review of the state of vehicular scars in the Umiat area indicates that all are revegetating at varying rates and are approaching a stable state.

  16. Biogeochemical modeling of tundra recovery following thermal erosion of permafrost

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pearce, A. R.; Rastetter, E. B.; Bowden, W. B.

    2011-12-01

    We simulate the biogeochemical recovery of tundra from a thermal erosion disturbance using the Multiple Element Limitation model (MEL) and compare model results with soil organic matter and nutrient chemistry measurements collected across a chronosequence of thermal erosion features. Thermal erosion of permafrost initially depletes the tundra of much of its vegetation and shallow soil organic matter. However, several decades later, there is often little distinguishing these scars from the surrounding undisturbed tundra. As thermal erosion features become more abundant on the arctic landscape, we desire to understand how the pools of carbon and nutrients rebuild after these disturbances. MEL is a plot-scale, process-based model that optimizes the acquisition of eight resources (light, water, CO2, PO4, NH4, NO3, DON and N-fixation) by vegetation based on how much of each is required and the effort needed to acquire it. Model output includes pool sizes of carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus in vegetation, litter, young soil organic matter and old soil organic matter and the fluxes among these pools over time. This calibration of MEL, operating on a daily timestep, was created with published data collected at or near the Toolik Field Station (Toolik Lake, AK, USA) from moist acidic tussock tundra sites. We corroborate our calibration with data from plot manipulations (N and P fertilization, greenhouse, and shade house) performed as part of the NSF Arctic LTER project. The initial conditions for the recovery simulations reflect post-failure observations of some of the variation in soil organic matter, and soil and water nutrient chemistry. With sufficient nutrients from residual soil or supplied in soil water from upslope, the model indicates that vegetation can recover within several decades, but recovery of C and nutrients lost from soils may take hundreds of years.

  17. Identification of unrecognized tundra fire events on the north slope of Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jones, Benjamin M.; Breen, Amy L.; Gaglioti, Benjamin V.; Mann, Daniel H.; Rocha, Adrian V.; Grosse, Guido; Arp, Christopher D.; Kunz, Michael L.; Walker, Donald A.

    2013-01-01

    Characteristics of the natural fire regime are poorly resolved in the Arctic, even though fire may play an important role cycling carbon stored in tundra vegetation and soils to the atmosphere. In the course of studying vegetation and permafrost-terrain characteristics along a chronosequence of tundra burn sites from AD 1977, 1993, and 2007 on the North Slope of Alaska, we discovered two large, previously unrecognized tundra fires. The Meade River fire burned an estimated 500 km2 and the Ketik River fire burned an estimated 1200 km2. Based on radiocarbon dating of charred twigs, analysis of historic aerial photography, and regional climate proxy data, these fires likely occurred between AD 1880 and 1920. Together, these events double the estimated burn area on the North Slope of Alaska over the last ~100 to 130 years. Assessment of vegetation succession along the century-scale chronosequence of tundra fire disturbances demonstrates for the first time on the North Slope of Alaska that tundra fires can facilitate the invasion of tundra by shrubs. Degradation of ice-rich permafrost was also evident at the fire sites and likely aided in the presumed changes of the tundra vegetation postfire. Other previously unrecognized tundra fire events likely exist in Alaska and other Arctic regions and identification of these sites is important for better understanding disturbance regimes and carbon cycling in Arctic tundra.

  18. Advancing the long view of ecological change in tundra systems

    PubMed Central

    Post, Eric; Høye, Toke T.

    2013-01-01

    Despite uncertainties related to sustained funding, ideological rivalries and the turnover of research personnel, long-term studies and studies espousing a long-term perspective in ecology have a history of contributing landmark insights into fundamental topics, such as population- and community dynamics, species interactions and ecosystem function. They also have the potential to reveal surprises related to unforeseen events and non-stationary dynamics that unfold over the course of ongoing observation and experimentation. The unprecedented rate and magnitude of current and expected abiotic changes in tundra environments calls for a synthetic overview of the scope of ecological responses these changes have elicited. In this special issue, we present a series of contributions that advance the long view of ecological change in tundra systems, either through sustained long-term research, or through retrospective or prospective modelling. Beyond highlighting the value of long-term research in tundra systems, the insights derived herein should also find application to the study of ecological responses to environmental change in other biomes as well. PMID:23836784

  19. How to preserve the tundra in a warming climate?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Käyhkö, Jukka

    2014-05-01

    The warming climate of the polar regions may change much of the current arctic-alpine tundra to forest or dense scrubland. This modification requires adaptation by traditional livelihoods such as reindeer herding, which relies on diverse, seasonal pasturelands. Vegetation change may also trigger positive warming feedbacks, where more abundant forest-scrub vegetation will decrease the global albedo. NCoE Tundra team investigates the complex climate-animal-plant interaction of the tundra ecosystem and aim to unravel the capability of herbivorous mammals to control the expansion of woody vegetation. Our interdisciplinary approach involves several work packages, whose results will be summarised in the presentation. In the ecological WPs, we study the dynamics of the natural food chains involving small herbivorous and the impacts of reindeer on the vegetation and the population dynamics of those arctic-alpine plants, which are most likely to become threatened in a warmer climate. Our study demonstrates the potential of a relatively sparse reindeer stocks (2-5 heads per km2) together with natural populations of arvicoline rodents to prevent the expansion of erect woody plants at the arctic-alpine timberline. In the climatic WPs we study the impact of grazing-dependent vegetation differences on the fraction of solar energy converted to heat. In the socio-economic WPs, we study the conditions for maintaining the economic and cultural viability of reindeer herding while managing the land use so that the arctic-alpine biota would be preserved.

  20. Effects of chronic warming and nutrient additions on ecosystem respiration and methane fluxes along a tundra moisture gradient

    SciTech Connect

    Nadelhoffer, K.; Murray, G.; Giblin, A.; Shaver, G.; Laundre, J.; Johnson, L.; Stanley, A. ); Schimel, J. )

    1994-06-01

    We measured ecosystem respiration (ER: or CO[sub 2] flux), methane (CH[sub 4]) fluxes and net ecosystem production (NEP) near Toolik Lake, Alaska to compare effects of temperature, moisture and nutrients on tundra C balances. We measured fluxes using closed chambers in control, warmed and fertilized plots in wet, moist and dry tundra. ER rankings of tundra types differed between years. In 1992 ER was [approximately]70 g C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1] in wet and moist tundra and was 50% lower in dry tundra. In 1993 ER was >150 g C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1] in moist tundra and [approximately]55 g C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1] in wet and dry tundra. CH[sub 4] emissions ranged from 3.5 to 7 g C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1] in wet and from 0.6 to 2.8 g C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1] in moist tundra. Dry tundra consumed about 0.1 g CH[sub 4]-C m[sup [minus]2]y[sup [minus]1]. In wet tundra ER increased slightly with warming but dramatically with fertilization. Wet tundra NEP increased with fertilization but not with warming. CH[sub 4] emissions from wet tundra increased with warming but decreased with fertilization. Warming and fertilization increased ER but neither treatment affected NEP in moist tundra. CH[sub 4] emissions from moist tundra responded similarly but less dramatically to treatments than did wet tundra CH[sub 4] fluxes. Warming did not affect ER or NEP in dry tundra, fertilization increased both process. Consumption of CH[sub 4] in dry tundra increased with warming but decreased with fertilization.

  1. 40 CFR 408.210 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ...-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.210 Section 408.210 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Conventional Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.210 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  2. 40 CFR 408.210 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ...-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.210 Section 408.210 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Conventional Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.210 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  3. 40 CFR 408.210 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ...-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.210 Section 408.210 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Conventional Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.210 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  4. 40 CFR 408.210 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ...-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.210 Section 408.210 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Conventional Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.210 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  5. 40 CFR 408.210 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ...-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.210 Section 408.210 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Conventional Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.210 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan conventional bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  6. 40 CFR 408.220 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ...-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.220 Section 408.220 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Mechanized Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.220 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  7. 40 CFR 408.220 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ...-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.220 Section 408.220 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Mechanized Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.220 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  8. 40 CFR 408.220 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ...-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.220 Section 408.220 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Mechanized Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.220 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  9. 40 CFR 408.220 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ...-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.220 Section 408.220 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Mechanized Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.220 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  10. 40 CFR 408.220 - Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ...-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. 408.220 Section 408.220 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Alaskan Mechanized Bottom Fish Processing Subcategory § 408.220 Applicability; description of the non-Alaskan mechanized bottom fish processing subcategory. The provisions...

  11. 40 CFR 408.60 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.60 Section 408.60 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.60 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab...

  12. 40 CFR 408.40 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.40 Section 408.40 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.40 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  13. 40 CFR 408.70 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.70 Section 408.70 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.70 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section...

  14. 40 CFR 408.60 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.60 Section 408.60 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.60 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab...

  15. 40 CFR 408.70 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.70 Section 408.70 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.70 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section...

  16. 40 CFR 408.60 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.60 Section 408.60 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.60 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab...

  17. 40 CFR 408.70 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.70 Section 408.70 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.70 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section...

  18. 40 CFR 408.60 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.60 Section 408.60 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.60 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab...

  19. 40 CFR 408.60 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.60 Section 408.60 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.60 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan whole crab and crab...

  20. 40 CFR 408.70 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.70 Section 408.70 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.70 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section...

  1. 40 CFR 408.70 - Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section processing subcategory. 408.70 Section 408.70 Protection of... SEAFOOD PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Remote Alaskan Whole Crab and Crab Section Processing Subcategory § 408.70 Applicability; description of the remote Alaskan whole crab and crab section...

  2. 40 CFR 408.40 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.40 Section 408.40 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.40 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  3. 40 CFR 408.40 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.40 Section 408.40 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.40 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  4. 40 CFR 408.40 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.40 Section 408.40 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.40 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  5. 40 CFR 408.40 - Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ...-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. 408.40 Section 408.40 Protection of Environment... PROCESSING POINT SOURCE CATEGORY Non-Remote Alaskan Crab Meat Processing Subcategory § 408.40 Applicability; description of the non-remote Alaskan crab meat processing subcategory. The provisions of this subpart...

  6. 25 CFR 243.11 - Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before issuance of this part valid?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before... INTERIOR FISH AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.11 Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before issuance of this part valid? All transfers of live Alaskan reindeer or reindeer products that...

  7. 25 CFR 243.11 - Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before issuance of this part valid?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before... INTERIOR FISH AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.11 Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before issuance of this part valid? All transfers of live Alaskan reindeer or reindeer products that...

  8. 25 CFR 243.11 - Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before issuance of this part valid?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before... INTERIOR FISH AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.11 Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before issuance of this part valid? All transfers of live Alaskan reindeer or reindeer products that...

  9. 25 CFR 243.11 - Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before issuance of this part valid?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before... INTERIOR FISH AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.11 Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before issuance of this part valid? All transfers of live Alaskan reindeer or reindeer products that...

  10. 25 CFR 243.11 - Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before issuance of this part valid?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2012-04-01 2011-04-01 true Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before... INTERIOR FISH AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.11 Are transfers of Alaskan reindeer that occurred before issuance of this part valid? All transfers of live Alaskan reindeer or reindeer products that...

  11. Distinct temperature sensitivity among taiga and tundra shrubs in Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andreu-Hayles, L.; Anchukaitis, K. J.; D'Arrigo, R.

    2014-12-01

    Shrub expansion into Arctic and alpine tundra ecosystems is well documented, mostly over the last 50 years, based on remote sensing data, aerial photography, and in-situ observations. Warming temperatures are considered the main driver of the observed change in shrub vegetation patterns. Here, we assess the relationship between temperatures and shrub growth from five populations of Salix spp. (willow) and Alnus spp. (alder) in Alaska growing within the tundra and the boreal forest (~taiga) using dendrochronological techniques. The three tundra shrub sites are located on the Dalton Highway north from Toolik Lake (~69ºN 148ºW), whereas the two taiga shrub sites are located closer to Fairbanks at the Twelve Mile Summit site (~65ºN 146ºW). Because shrub ages vary among the studied populations lead to different time spans for the ring-width chronologies generated, a common period with available satellite data spanning from 1982 to 2010 was selected for this study. All tundra shrub chronologies shared a strong positive response to summer temperatures despite growing in heterogeneous site conditions and belonging to different species. In contrast, in the taiga, summer temperatures enhance willow growth, whereas alder growth appears almost insensitive to temperature over the interval studied. Extending the analyses back in time, a very strong positive relationship was found between alder ring-width and June temperatures prior to 1970. This phenomenon, a weakening of the previously existing relationship between growth and temperatures, was also detected in white spruce (Picea glauca) growing at the same site, and it is known in the literature as the 'divergence problem'. Thus, at this taiga location, alder shrubs and trees seem to have similar growth patterns. Summer temperatures no longer seem to enhance taiga alder growth. Shrubs of different species exposed to the same climatic conditions can exhibit varied growth responses. The distinct temperature sensitivities

  12. Changing Seasonality of Tundra Vegetation and Associated Climatic Variables

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bhatt, U. S.; Walker, D. A.; Raynolds, M. K.; Bieniek, P.; Epstein, H. E.; Comiso, J. C.; Pinzon, J.; Tucker, C. J.; Steele, M.; Ermold, W. S.; Zhang, J.

    2014-12-01

    This study documents changes in the seasonality of tundra vegetation productivity and its associated climate variables using long-term data sets. An overall increase of Pan-Arctic tundra greenness potential corresponds to increased land surface temperatures and declining sea ice concentrations. While sea ice has continued to decline, summer land surface temperature and vegetation productivity increases have stalled during the last decade in parts of the Arctic. To understand the processes behind these features we investigate additional climate parameters. This study employs remotely sensed weekly 25-km sea ice concentration, weekly surface temperature, and bi-weekly NDVI from 1982 to 2013. Maximum NDVI (MaxNDVI, Maximum Normalized Difference Vegetation Index), Time Integrated NDVI (TI-NDVI), Summer Warmth Index (SWI, sum of degree months above freezing during May-August), ocean heat content (PIOMAS, model incorporating ocean data assimilation), and snow water equivalent (GlobSnow, assimilated snow data set) are explored. We analyzed the data for the full period (1982-2013) and for two sub-periods (1982-1998 and 1999-2013), which were chosen based on the declining Pan-Arctic SWI since 1998. MaxNDVI has increased from 1982-2013 over most of the Arctic but has declined from 1999 to 2013 over western Eurasia, northern Canada, and southwest Alaska. TI-NDVI has trends that are similar to those for MaxNDVI for the full period but displays widespread declines over the 1999-2013 period. Therefore, as the MaxNDVI has continued to increase overall for the Arctic, TI-NDVI has been declining since 1999. SWI has large relative increases over the 1982-2013 period in eastern Canada and Greenland and strong declines in western Eurasia and southern Canadian tundra. Weekly Pan-Arctic tundra land surface temperatures warmed throughout the summer during the 1982-1998 period but display midsummer declines from 1999-2013. Weekly snow water equivalent over Arctic tundra has declined over

  13. Changes in microbial communities along redox gradients in polygonized Arctic wet tundra soils

    SciTech Connect

    Lipson, David A.; Raab, Theodore K.; Parker, Melanie; Kelley, Scott T.; Brislawn, Colin J.; Jansson, Janet K.

    2015-07-21

    This study investigated how microbial community structure and diversity varied with depth and topography in ice wedge polygons of wet tundra of the Arctic Coastal Plain in northern Alaska, and what soil variables explain these patterns. We observed strong changes in community structure and diversity with depth, and more subtle changes between areas of high and low topography, with the largest differences apparent near the soil surface. These patterns are most strongly correlated with redox gradients (measured using the ratio of reduced Fe to total Fe in acid extracts as a proxy): conditions grew more reducing with depth and were most oxidized in shallow regions of polygon rims. Organic matter and pH also changed with depth and topography, but were less effective predictors of the microbial community structure and relative abundance of specific taxa. Of all other measured variables, lactic acid concentration was the best, in combination with redox, for describing the microbial community. We conclude that redox conditions are the dominant force in shaping microbial communities in this landscape. Oxygen and other electron acceptors allowed for the greatest diversity of microbes: at depth the community was reduced to a simpler core of anaerobes, dominated by fermenters (Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes).

  14. Changes in microbial communities along redox gradients in polygonized Arctic wet tundra soils

    SciTech Connect

    Lipson, David A.; Raab, Theodore K.; Parker, Melanie; Kelley, Scott T.; Brislawn, Colin J.; Jansson, Janet K.

    2015-08-01

    Summary This study investigated how microbial community structure and diversity varied with depth and topography in ice wedge polygons of wet tundra of the Arctic Coastal Plain in northern Alaska and what soil variables explain these patterns. We observed strong changes in community structure and diversity with depth, and more subtle changes between areas of high and low topography, with the largest differences apparent near the soil surface. These patterns are most strongly correlated with redox gradients (measured using the ratio of reduced Fe to total Fe in acid extracts as a proxy): conditions grew more reducing with depth and were most oxidized in shallow regions of polygon rims. Organic matter and pH also changed with depth and topography but were less effective predictors of the microbial community structure and relative abundance of specific taxa. Of all other measured variables, lactic acid concentration was the best, in combination with redox, for describing the microbial community. We conclude that redox conditions are the dominant force in shaping microbial communities in this landscape. Oxygen and other electron acceptors allowed for the greatest diversity of microbes: at depth the community was reduced to a simpler core of anaerobes,

  15. Backscatter from ice growing on shallow tundra lakes near Barrow, Alaska, winter 1991-1992

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jeffries, M. O.; Wakabayashi, H.; Weeks, W. F.; Morris, K.

    1993-01-01

    The timing of freeze-up and break-up of Arctic lake ice is a potentially useful environmental indicator that could be monitored using SAR. In order to do this, it is important to understand how the properties and structure of the ice during its growth and decay affect radar backscatter and thus lake ice SAR signatures. The availability of radiometrically and geometrically calibrated digital SAR data time series from the Alaska SAR Facility has made it possible for the first time to quantify lake ice backscatter intensity (sigma(sup o)) variations. This has been done for ice growing on shallow tundra lakes near Barrow, NW Alaska, from initial growth in September 1991 until thawing and decay in June 1992. Field and laboratory observations and measurements of the lake ice were made in late April 1992. The field investigations of the coastal lakes near Barrow confirmed previous findings that, (1) ice frozen to the lake bottom had a dark signature in SAR images, indicating weak backscatter, while, (2) ice that was floating had a bright signature, indicating strong backscatter. At all sites, regardless of whether the ice was grounded or floating, there was a layer of clear, inclusion-free ice overlaying a layer of ice with dense concentrations of vertically oriented tubular bubbles. At some sites, there was a third layer of porous, snow-ice overlaying the clear ice.

  16. Changes in microbial communities along redox gradients in polygonized Arctic wet tundra soils.

    PubMed

    Lipson, David A; Raab, Theodore K; Parker, Melanie; Kelley, Scott T; Brislawn, Colin J; Jansson, Janet

    2015-08-01

    This study investigated how microbial community structure and diversity varied with depth and topography in ice wedge polygons of wet tundra of the Arctic Coastal Plain in northern Alaska and what soil variables explain these patterns. We observed strong changes in community structure and diversity with depth, and more subtle changes between areas of high and low topography, with the largest differences apparent near the soil surface. These patterns are most strongly correlated with redox gradients (measured using the ratio of reduced Fe to total Fe in acid extracts as a proxy): conditions grew more reducing with depth and were most oxidized in shallow regions of polygon rims. Organic matter and pH also changed with depth and topography but were less effective predictors of the microbial community structure and relative abundance of specific taxa. Of all other measured variables, lactic acid concentration was the best, in combination with redox, for describing the microbial community. We conclude that redox conditions are the dominant force in shaping microbial communities in this landscape. Oxygen and other electron acceptors allowed for the greatest diversity of microbes: at depth the community was reduced to a simpler core of anaerobes, dominated by fermenters (Bacteroidetes and Firmicutes).

  17. 25 CFR 243.9 - Who may inherit live Alaskan reindeer and by what means?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... provisions of 43 CFR part 4, subpart D. During the pendency of such a proceeding, the authority to assume control over the affected Alaskan reindeer pursuant to 43 CFR 4.270 may be exercised by the Alaska... 25 Indians 1 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Who may inherit live Alaskan reindeer and by what...

  18. 25 CFR 243.9 - Who may inherit live Alaskan reindeer and by what means?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... provisions of 43 CFR part 4, subpart D. During the pendency of such a proceeding, the authority to assume control over the affected Alaskan reindeer pursuant to 43 CFR 4.270 may be exercised by the Alaska... 25 Indians 1 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Who may inherit live Alaskan reindeer and by what...

  19. 25 CFR 243.4 - Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer? 243.4 Section 243.4 Indians BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR FISH AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.4 Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer? (a) Only Alaska Natives, organizations of...

  20. 25 CFR 243.9 - Who may inherit live Alaskan reindeer and by what means?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... provisions of 43 CFR part 4, subpart D. During the pendency of such a proceeding, the authority to assume control over the affected Alaskan reindeer pursuant to 43 CFR 4.270 may be exercised by the Alaska... 25 Indians 1 2012-04-01 2011-04-01 true Who may inherit live Alaskan reindeer and by what...

  1. 25 CFR 243.4 - Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer? 243.4 Section 243.4 Indians BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR FISH AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.4 Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer? (a) Only Alaska Natives, organizations of...

  2. 25 CFR 243.4 - Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2012-04-01 2011-04-01 true Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer? 243.4 Section 243.4 Indians BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR FISH AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.4 Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer? (a) Only Alaska Natives, organizations of...

  3. 25 CFR 243.4 - Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer? 243.4 Section 243.4 Indians BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR FISH AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.4 Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer? (a) Only Alaska Natives, organizations of...

  4. 25 CFR 243.9 - Who may inherit live Alaskan reindeer and by what means?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... provisions of 43 CFR part 4, subpart D. During the pendency of such a proceeding, the authority to assume control over the affected Alaskan reindeer pursuant to 43 CFR 4.270 may be exercised by the Alaska... 25 Indians 1 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Who may inherit live Alaskan reindeer and by what...

  5. 25 CFR 243.4 - Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer? 243.4 Section 243.4 Indians BUREAU OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR FISH AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.4 Who can own or possess Alaskan reindeer? (a) Only Alaska Natives, organizations of...

  6. 25 CFR 243.9 - Who may inherit live Alaskan reindeer and by what means?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... provisions of 43 CFR part 4, subpart D. During the pendency of such a proceeding, the authority to assume control over the affected Alaskan reindeer pursuant to 43 CFR 4.270 may be exercised by the Alaska... live Alaskan reindeer may pass to the deceased owner's Native heirs by descent or devise. (b) In...

  7. On the Frontline: Tracking Ocean Acidification in an Alaskan Shellfish Hatchery.

    PubMed

    Evans, Wiley; Mathis, Jeremy T; Ramsay, Jacqueline; Hetrick, Jeff

    2015-01-01

    The invasion of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) into the ocean is shifting the marine carbonate system such that saturation states of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) minerals are decreasing, and this is having a detrimental impact on early life stages of select shellfish species. The global, secular decrease in CaCO3 saturation states is occurring on top of a backdrop of large natural variability in coastal settings; progressively shifting the envelope of variability and leading to longer and more frequent exposure to adverse conditions. This is a great concern in the State of Alaska, a high-latitude setting vulnerable to rapid changes in the marine carbonate system, where an emerging shellfish industry plans major growth over the coming decades. Currently, the Alutiiq Pride Shellfish Hatchery (APSH) in Seward, Alaska is the only hatchery in the state, and produces many shellfish species with early life stages known to be sensitive to low CaCO3 saturation states. Here we present the first land-based OA measurements made in an Alaskan shellfish hatchery, and detail the trends in the saturation state of aragonite (Ωarag), the more soluble form of CaCO3, over a 10-month period in the APSH seawater supply. These data indicate the largest changes are on the seasonal time scale, with extended periods of sub-optimal Ωarag levels (Ωarag < 1.5) in winter and autumn associated with elevated water column respiration and short-lived runoff events, respectively. The data pinpoint a 5-month window of reprieve with favorable Ωarag conditions above the sub-optimal Ωarag threshold, which under predicted upper-bound CO2 emissions trajectories is estimated to close by 2040. To date, many species in production at APSH remain untested in their response to OA, and the data presented here establish the current conditions at APSH as well as provide a framework for hatchery-based measurements in Alaska. The current and expected conditions seen at APSH are essential to consider for this

  8. On the Frontline: Tracking Ocean Acidification in an Alaskan Shellfish Hatchery

    PubMed Central

    Evans, Wiley; Mathis, Jeremy T.; Ramsay, Jacqueline; Hetrick, Jeff

    2015-01-01

    The invasion of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) into the ocean is shifting the marine carbonate system such that saturation states of calcium carbonate (CaCO3) minerals are decreasing, and this is having a detrimental impact on early life stages of select shellfish species. The global, secular decrease in CaCO3 saturation states is occurring on top of a backdrop of large natural variability in coastal settings; progressively shifting the envelope of variability and leading to longer and more frequent exposure to adverse conditions. This is a great concern in the State of Alaska, a high-latitude setting vulnerable to rapid changes in the marine carbonate system, where an emerging shellfish industry plans major growth over the coming decades. Currently, the Alutiiq Pride Shellfish Hatchery (APSH) in Seward, Alaska is the only hatchery in the state, and produces many shellfish species with early life stages known to be sensitive to low CaCO3 saturation states. Here we present the first land-based OA measurements made in an Alaskan shellfish hatchery, and detail the trends in the saturation state of aragonite (Ωarag), the more soluble form of CaCO3, over a 10-month period in the APSH seawater supply. These data indicate the largest changes are on the seasonal time scale, with extended periods of sub-optimal Ωarag levels (Ωarag < 1.5) in winter and autumn associated with elevated water column respiration and short-lived runoff events, respectively. The data pinpoint a 5-month window of reprieve with favorable Ωarag conditions above the sub-optimal Ωarag threshold, which under predicted upper-bound CO2 emissions trajectories is estimated to close by 2040. To date, many species in production at APSH remain untested in their response to OA, and the data presented here establish the current conditions at APSH as well as provide a framework for hatchery-based measurements in Alaska. The current and expected conditions seen at APSH are essential to consider for this

  9. Airborne Spectral Measurements of Surface-Atmosphere Anisotropy for Arctic Sea Ice and Tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arnold, G. Thomas; Tsay, Si-Chee; King, Michael D.; Li, Jason Y.; Soulen, Peter F.

    1999-01-01

    Angular distributions of spectral reflectance for four common arctic surfaces: snow-covered sea ice, melt-season sea ice, snow-covered tundra, and tundra shortly after snowmelt were measured using an aircraft based, high angular resolution (1-degree) multispectral radiometer. Results indicate bidirectional reflectance is higher for snow-covered sea ice than melt-season sea ice at all wavelengths between 0.47 and 2.3 pm, with the difference increasing with wavelength. Bidirectional reflectance of snow-covered tundra is higher than for snow-free tundra for measurements less than 1.64 pm, with the difference decreasing with wavelength. Bidirectional reflectance patterns of all measured surfaces show maximum reflectance in the forward scattering direction of the principal plane, with identifiable specular reflection for the melt-season sea ice and snow-free tundra cases. The snow-free tundra had the most significant backscatter, and the melt-season sea ice the least. For sea ice, bidirectional reflectance changes due to snowmelt were more significant than differences among the different types of melt-season sea ice. Also the spectral-hemispherical (plane) albedo of each measured arctic surface was computed. Comparing measured nadir reflectance to albedo for sea ice and snow-covered tundra shows albedo underestimated 5-40%, with the largest bias at wavelengths beyond 1 pm. For snow-free tundra, nadir reflectance underestimates plane albedo by about 30-50%.

  10. Dynamics of Aboveground Phytomass of the Circumpolar Arctic Tundra During the Past Three Decades

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Epstein, Howard E.; Raynolds, Martha K.; Walker, Donald A.; Bhatt, Uma S.; Tucker, Compton J.; Pinzon, Jorge E.

    2012-01-01

    Numerous studies have evaluated the dynamics of Arctic tundra vegetation throughout the past few decades, using remotely sensed proxies of vegetation, such as the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). While extremely useful, these coarse-scale satellite-derived measurements give us minimal information with regard to how these changes are being expressed on the ground, in terms of tundra structure and function. In this analysis, we used a strong regression model between NDVI and aboveground tundra phytomass, developed from extensive field-harvested measurements of vegetation biomass, to estimate the biomass dynamics of the circumpolar Arctic tundra over the period of continuous satellite records (1982-2010). We found that the southernmost tundra subzones (C-E) dominate the increases in biomass, ranging from 20 to 26%, although there was a high degree of heterogeneity across regions, floristic provinces, and vegetation types. The estimated increase in carbon of the aboveground live vegetation of 0.40 Pg C over the past three decades is substantial, although quite small relative to anthropogenic C emissions. However, a 19.8% average increase in aboveground biomass has major implications for nearly all aspects of tundra ecosystems including hydrology, active layer depths, permafrost regimes, wildlife and human use of Arctic landscapes. While spatially extensive on-the-ground measurements of tundra biomass were conducted in the development of this analysis, validation is still impossible without more repeated, long-term monitoring of Arctic tundra biomass in the field.

  11. Sea Ice, Hydrocarbon Extraction, Rain-on-Snow and Tundra Reindeer Nomadism in Arctic Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forbes, B. C.; Kumpula, T.; Meschtyb, N.; Laptander, R.; Macias-Fauria, M.; Zetterberg, P.; Verdonen, M.

    2015-12-01

    It is assumed that retreating sea ice in the Eurasian Arctic will accelerate hydrocarbon development and associated tanker traffic along Russia's Northern Sea Route. However, oil and gas extraction along the Kara and Barents Sea coasts will likely keep developing rapidly regardless of whether the Northwest Eurasian climate continues to warm. Less certain are the real and potential linkages to regional biota and social-ecological systems. Reindeer nomadism continues to be a vitally important livelihood for indigenous tundra Nenets and their large herds of semi-domestic reindeer. Warming summer air temperatures over the NW Russian Arctic have been linked to increases in tundra productivity, longer growing seasons, and accelerated growth of tall deciduous shrubs. These temperature increases have, in turn, been linked to more frequent and sustained summer high-pressure systems over West Siberia, but not to sea ice retreat. At the same time, winters have been warming and rain-on-snow (ROS) events have become more frequent and intense, leading to record-breaking winter and spring mortality of reindeer. What is driving this increase in ROS frequency and intensity is not clear. Recent modelling and simulation have found statistically significant near-surface atmospheric warming and precipitation increases during autumn and winter over Arctic coastal lands in proximity to regions of sea-ice loss. During the winter of 2013-14 an extensive and lasting ROS event led to the starvation of 61,000 reindeer out of a population of ca. 300,000 animals on Yamal Peninsula, West Siberia. Historically, this is the region's largest recorded mortality episode. More than a year later, participatory fieldwork with nomadic herders during spring-summer 2015 revealed that the ecological and socio-economic impacts from this extreme event will unfold for years to come. There is an urgent need to understand whether and how ongoing Barents and Kara Sea ice retreat may affect the region's ancient

  12. Summertime CO2 fluxes and ecosystem respiration from marine animal colony tundra in maritime Antarctica

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhu, Renbin; Bao, Tao; Wang, Qing; Xu, Hua; Liu, Yashu

    2014-12-01

    Net ecosystem CO2 exchange (NEE) and ecosystem respiration (ER) were investigated at penguin, seal and skua colony tundra and the adjacent animal-lacking tundra sites in maritime Antarctica. Net CO2 fluxes showed a large difference between marine animal colonies and animal-lacking tundra sites. The mean NEE from penguin, seal and skua colony tundra sites ranged from -37.2 to 5.2 mg CO2 m-2 h-1, whereas animal-lacking tundra sites experienced a larger net gain of CO2 with the mean flux range from -85.6 to -23.9 mg CO2 m-2 h-1. Ecosystem respiration rates at penguin colony tundra sites (mean 201.3 ± 31.4 mg CO2 m-2 h-1) were significantly higher (P < 0.01) than those at penguin-lacking tundra sites (64.0-87.1 mg CO2 m-2 h-1). The gross photosynthesis (Pg) showed a consistent trend to ER with the highest mean Pg (219.7 ± 34.5 mg CO2 m-2 h-1) at penguin colony tundra sites. When all the data were combined from different types of tundra ecosystems, summertime tundra NEE showed a weak or strong positive correlation with air temperature, 0-10 cm soil temperature or precipitation. The NEE from marine animal colony and animal-lacking tundra was significantly positively correlated (P < 0.001) with soil organic carbon (SOC), total nitrogen (TN) contents and C:N ratios. The ER showed a significant exponential correlation (P < 0.01) with mean 0-15 cm soil temperature, and much higher Q10 value (9.97) was obtained compared with other terrestrial ecosystems, indicating greater temperature sensitivity of tundra ecosystem respiration. Our results indicate that marine animals and the deposition of their excreta might have an important effect on tundra CO2 exchanges and ecosystem respiration, and current climate warming will further decrease tundra CO2 sink in maritime Antarctica.

  13. Tundra in the rain: differential vegetation responses to three years of experimentally doubled summer precipitation in Siberian shrub and Swedish bog tundra.

    PubMed

    Keuper, Frida; Parmentier, Frans-Jan W; Blok, Daan; van Bodegom, Peter M; Dorrepaal, Ellen; van Hal, Jurgen R; van Logtestijn, Richard S P; Aerts, Rien

    2012-01-01

    Precipitation amounts and patterns at high latitude sites have been predicted to change as a result of global climatic changes. We addressed vegetation responses to three years of experimentally increased summer precipitation in two previously unaddressed tundra types: Betula nana-dominated shrub tundra (northeast Siberia) and a dry Sphagnum fuscum-dominated bog (northern Sweden). Positive responses to approximately doubled ambient precipitation (an increase of 200 mm year(-1)) were observed at the Siberian site, for B. nana (30 % larger length increments), Salix pulchra (leaf size and length increments) and Arctagrostis latifolia (leaf size and specific leaf area), but none were observed at the Swedish site. Total biomass production did not increase at either of the study sites. This study corroborates studies in other tundra vegetation types and shows that despite regional differences at the plant level, total tundra plant productivity is, at least at the short or medium term, largely irresponsive to experimentally increased summer precipitation.

  14. (Alaskan commodities irradiation project: An options analysis study)

    SciTech Connect

    Zarling, J.P.; Swanson, R.B.; Logan, R.R.; Das, D.K.; Lewis, C.E.; Workman, W.G.; Tumeo, M.A.; Hok, C.I.; Birklind, C.A.; Bennett, F.L. . Inst. of Northern Engineering)

    1989-09-01

    The ninety-ninth US Congress commissioned a six-state food irradiation research and development program to evaluate the commercial potential of this technology. Hawaii, Washington, Iowa, Oklahoma and Florida as well as Alaska have participated in the national program; various food products including fishery products, red meats, tropical and citrus fruits and vegetables have been studied. The purpose of the Alaskan study was to review and evaluate those factors related to the technical and economic feasibility of an irradiator in Alaska. This options analysis study will serve as a basis for determining the state's further involvement in the development of food irradiation technology.

  15. Decadal changes of phenological patterns over Arctic tundra biome

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jia, G. J.; Epstein, H. E.; Walker, D. A.; Wang, H.

    2008-12-01

    The northern high latitudes have experienced a continuous and accelerated trend of warming during the past 30 years, with most recent decade ranks the warmest years since 1850. Warmer springs are especially evident throughout the Arctic. Meanwhile, Arctic sea ice declined rapidly to unprecedented low extents in all months, with late summer experiences the most significant declining. Warming in the north is also evident from observations of early melting of snow and reducing snow cover. Now a key question is: in the warmth limited northern biome, what will happen to the phenological patterns of tundra vegetation as the global climate warms and seasonality of air temperature, sea ice, and snow cover shift? To answer the question we examined the onset of vegetation greenness, senescence of greenness, length of growing season, and dates of peak greenness along Arctic bioclimate gradients (subzones) to see how they change over years. Here, we combine multi-scale sub-pixel analysis and remote sensing time-series analysis to investigate recent decadal changes in vegetation phenology along spatial gradients of summer temperature and vegetation in the Arctic. The datasets used here are AVHRR 15-day 8 km time series, AVHRR 8-day 1 km dataset, and MODIS 8-day 500m Collection 5 dataset. There were detectable changes in phenological pattern over tundra biome in past two decades. Increases of vegetation greenness were observed in most of the summer periods in low arctic and mid-summer in high arctic. Peak greenness appeared earlier in high arctic and declined slower after peak in low arctic. Generally, tundra plants were having longer and stronger photosynthesis activities, and therefore increased annual vegetation productivities. Field studies have observed early growth and enhanced peak growth of many deciduous shrub species in tundra plant communities. These changes in seasonality are very likely to alter surface albedo and heat budget, modify plant photosynthesis

  16. Analysis of Alaskan burn severity patterns using remotely sensed data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Duffy, P.A.; Epting, J.; Graham, J.M.; Rupp, T.S.; McGuire, A.D.

    2007-01-01

    Wildland fire is the dominant large-scale disturbance mechanism in the Alaskan boreal forest, and it strongly influences forest structure and function. In this research, patterns of burn severity in the Alaskan boreal forest are characterised using 24 fires. First, the relationship between burn severity and area burned is quantified using a linear regression. Second, the spatial correlation of burn severity as a function of topography is modelled using a variogram analysis. Finally, the relationship between vegetation type and spatial patterns of burn severity is quantified using linear models where variograms account for spatial correlation. These results show that: 1) average burn severity increases with the natural logarithm of the area of the wildfire, 2) burn severity is more variable in topographically complex landscapes than in flat landscapes, and 3) there is a significant relationship between burn severity and vegetation type in flat landscapes but not in topographically complex landscapes. These results strengthen the argument that differential flammability of vegetation exists in some boreal landscapes of Alaska. Additionally, these results suggest that through feedbacks between vegetation and burn severity, the distribution of forest vegetation through time is likely more stable in flat terrain than it is in areas with more complex topography. ?? IAWF 2007.

  17. Reanalysis of the USGS Alaskan benchmark glacier dataset

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Beusekom, A. E.; O'Neel, S.; March, R. S.; Sass, L. C.

    2010-12-01

    Resolving the relationship between glacier surface-forcing (climate) and glacier geometry changes is accomplished through mass-balance estimates which can be made with remote sensing methods or field-based observations. The small scale of Alaskan glaciers has prevented remote sensing methods until recently, and field data are essential for validating new techniques. Field data provide the only long duration record that can be studied with respect to climate. The United States Geological Survey has maintained a 44-year mass-balance program at Alaska’s Gulkana Glacier and Wolverine Glacier. We have reanalyzed the Alaskan benchmark glaciers mass balance time series so that all data are treated similarly and systematically. Both glaciers are undergoing sustained mass loss with an increasing rate in recent years. However, the magnitude of the calculated loss depends on the number and location of the data collection sites. We explore the sensitivity of the glacier-wide balance estimates to the method of integration used on the necessarily point data. The robustness of the balance is strengthened with use of independent photogrammetric measurements.

  18. Permafrost degradation stimulates carbon loss from experimentally warmed tundra.

    PubMed

    Natali, Susan M; Schuur, Edward A G; Webb, Elizabeth E; Pries, Caitlin E Hicks; Crummer, Kathryn G

    2014-03-01

    A large pool of organic carbon (C) has been accumulating in the Arctic for thousands of years because cold and waterlogged conditions have protected soil organic material from microbial decomposition. As the climate warms this vast and frozen C pool is at risk of being thawed, decomposed, and released to the atmosphere as greenhouse gasses. At the same time, some C losses may be offset by warming-mediated increases in plant productivity. Plant and microbial responses to warming ultimately determine net C exchange from ecosystems, but the timing and magnitude of these responses remain uncertain. Here we show that experimental warming and permafrost (ground that remains below 0 degrees C for two or more consecutive years) degradation led to a two-fold increase in net ecosystem C uptake during the growing season. However, warming also enhanced winter respiration, which entirely offset growing-season C gains. Winter C losses may be even higher in response to actual climate warming than to our experimental manipulations, and, in that scenario, could be expected to more than double overall net C losses from tundra to the atmosphere. Our results highlight the importance of winter processes in determining whether tundra acts as a C source or sink, and demonstrate the potential magnitude of C release from the permafrost zone that might be expected in a warmer climate.

  19. Tundra disturbance and ecosystem production: Implications for impact assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Truett, Joe C.; Kertell, Kenneth

    1992-07-01

    Environmental regulations governing industrial activities in tundra environments stem largely from the expected ecological effects of the activities. One of the major ecological effects of industrial activities is the surface subsidence associated with thermokarst, which can result in changes in primary and secondary production. The primary production changes associated with thermokarst are strongly governed by three ecosystem properties—soil temperature, water regime, and nutrient availability. Most disturbances set in motion a more-or-less predictable sequence of landscape change related to these properties: soil warming, thermokarst, surface flooding, accelerated organic matter decomposition, and increased nutrient availability. The warmed soil and the enhanced nutrient availability typically lead to increased annual primary production, increased dominance by graminoids, and reduced plant species diversity. These vegetational changes may in turn potentially enhance secondary production, but in general these second-level responses have yet to be quantified. More information is needed about the food-chain effects of tundra landscape disturbances before regulators can make well-informed predictions of impacts or plan useful habitat rehabilitation.

  20. Recovering glycoside hydrolase genes from active tundra cellulolytic bacteria.

    PubMed

    Pinnell, Lee J; Dunford, Eric; Ronan, Patrick; Hausner, Martina; Neufeld, Josh D

    2014-07-01

    Bacteria responsible for cellulose hydrolysis in situ are poorly understood, largely because of the relatively recent development of cultivation-independent methods for their detection and characterization. This study combined DNA stable-isotope probing (DNA-SIP) and metagenomics for identifying active bacterial communities that assimilated carbon from glucose and cellulose in Arctic tundra microcosms. Following DNA-SIP, bacterial fingerprint analysis of gradient fractions confirmed isotopic enrichment. Sequenced fingerprint bands and clone library analysis of 16S rRNA genes identified active bacterial taxa associated with cellulose-associated labelled DNA, including Bacteroidetes (Sphingobacteriales), Betaproteobacteria (Burkholderiales), Alphaproteobacteria (Caulobacteraceae), and Chloroflexi (Anaerolineaceae). We also compared glycoside hydrolase metagenomic profiles from bulk soil and heavy DNA recovered from DNA-SIP incubations. Active populations consuming [(13)C]glucose and [(13)C]cellulose were distinct, based on ordinations of light and heavy DNA. Metagenomic analysis demonstrated a ∼3-fold increase in the relative abundance of glycoside hydrolases in DNA-SIP libraries over bulk-soil libraries. The data also indicate that multiple displacement amplification introduced bias into the resulting metagenomic analysis. This research identified DNA-SIP incubation conditions for glucose and cellulose that were suitable for Arctic tundra soil and confirmed that DNA-SIP enrichment can increase target gene frequencies in metagenomic libraries.

  1. Tundra carbon balance under varying temperature and moisture regimes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huemmrich, K. F.; Kinoshita, G.; Gamon, J. A.; Houston, S.; Kwon, H.; Oechel, W. C.

    2010-12-01

    To understand the effects of environmental change on tundra carbon balance, a manipulation experiment was performed in wet sedge tundra near Barrow, Alaska. Three replicates of six environmental treatments were made: control, heating, raising or lowering water table, and heating along with raising or lowering water table. Carbon fluxes were measured using a portable chamber for six days during the 2001 growing season. Spectral reflectance and meteorological measurements were also collected. Empirical models derived from flux measurements were developed for daily gross ecosystem production (GEP) and ecosystem respiration (Re). The amount of photosynthetically active radiation absorbed by the plants was strongly correlated with GEP. This relationship was not affected by treatment or time during the growing season. Re was related to soil temperature with a different relationship for each water level treatment. Re in the lowered water table treatment had a strong response to temperature changes, while the raised water table treatment showed little temperature response. These models calculated daily net ecosystem exchange for all of the treatments over the growing season. Warming increased both the seasonal carbon gain and carbon loss. By the end of summer the lowered water table treatments, both heated and unheated, were net carbon sources while all other treatments were sinks. Warming and/or raising the water table increased the strength of the net sink. Over the timescale of this experiment, water table primarily determined whether the ecosystem was a source or sink, with temperature modifying the strength of the source or sink.

  2. Tundra swan habitat preferences during migration in North Dakota

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Earnst, S.L.

    1994-01-01

    I studied tundra swan (Cygnus columbianus columbianus) habitat preference in North Dakota during autumn migration, 1988-89. Many thousand tundra swans stop in the Prairie Pothole region during autumn migration, but swan resource use has not been quantified. I examined habitat preference in relation to an index of sago pondweed (Potamogeton pectinatus) presence, extent of open water, and wetland size. I compared habitat preference derived from counts of all swans to those derived from foraging swans only and cygnets only. Foraging swans preferred wetlands with sago pondweed (P = 0.03); the number of foraging swans per wetland was >4 times higher on wetlands with sago pondweed than on wetlands without sago. In contrast, nonforaging swans did not prefer wetlands with sago pondweed (P = 0.85) but preferred large wetlands (P = 0.02) and those with a high proportion of contiguous open water (P < 0.01). Thus, conclusions about habitat preference derived from counts of all swans, most of which were nonforaging, would not have revealed the importance of sago pondweed. Cygnets were more likely to be feeding than adults (P = 0.03) and occurred proportionately more often in smaller flocks (P = 0.04), but cygnets and adults had similar habitat preferences.

  3. Stable isotope natural abundance of nitrous oxide emitted from Antarctic tundra soils: effects of sea animal excrement depositions.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Renbin; Liu, Yashu; Li, Xianglan; Sun, Jianjun; Xu, Hua; Sun, Liguang

    2008-11-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O), a greenhouse gas, is mainly emitted from soils during the nitrification and denitrification processes. N2O stable isotope investigations can help to characterize the N2O sources and N2O production mechanisms. N2O isotope measurements have been conducted for different types of global terrestrial ecosystems. However, no isotopic data of N2O emitted from Antarctic tundra ecosystems have been reported although the coastal ice-free tundra around Antarctic continent is the largest sea animal colony on the global scale. Here, we report for the first time stable isotope composition of N2O emitted from Antarctic sea animal colonies (including penguin, seal and skua colonies) and normal tundra soils using in situ field observations and laboratory incubations, and we have analyzed the effects of sea animal excrement depositions on stable isotope natural abundance of N2O. For all the field sites, the soil-emitted N2O was 15N- and 18O-depleted compared with N2O in local ambient air. The mean delta values of the soil-emitted N2O were delta15N = -13.5 +/- 3.2 per thousand and delta18O = 26.2 +/- 1.4 per thousand for the penguin colony, delta15N = -11.5 +/- 5.1 per thousand and delta18O = 26.4 +/- 3.5 per thousand for the skua colony and delta15N = -18.9 +/- 0.7 per thousand and delta18O = 28.8 +/- 1.3 per thousand for the seal colony. In the soil incubations, the isotopic composition of N2O was measured under N2 and under ambient air conditions. The soils incubated under the ambient air emitted very little N2O (2.93 microg N2O--N kg(-1)). Under N2 conditions, much more N2O was formed (9.74 microg N2O--N kg(-1)), and the mean delta15N and delta18O values of N2O were -19.1 +/- 8.0 per thousand and 21.3 +/- 4.3 per thousand, respectively, from penguin colony soils, and -17.0 +/- 4.2 per thousand and 20.6 +/- 3.5 per thousand, respectively, from seal colony soils. The data from in situ field observations and laboratory experiments point to denitrification as the

  4. Arctic coastal zone mapping: Evolution of sedimentary coasts in Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bendixen, M.; Kroon, A.

    2015-12-01

    Climate change threatens many of the coastal areas all over the world. In the Arctic, the warming happens at a rate which is three times faster than the global average increasing the pressure on the coast. Arctic coasts differ from coasts in lower latitude in terms of the natural conditions prevailing, i.e. sea-ice, permafrost, and thermal erosion. These factors are likely to change with an increasing temperature, and thereby the erodibility of the shores and the erosivity of the coastal processes are changing. The majority of studies on arctic coasts focus on tundra coasts. Here, there is a general increase of coastal erosion rates over the last decades. However, the arctic coastal areas of Greenland differ; they are often close to hard rock protrusions and are characterized by large differences in geomorphology, erodibility of sediments, and erosivity by coastal processes. Sedimentary coasts in Greenland are only sporadically investigated, and it is thus difficult to predict the impact of climate changes in these areas. With this work we focus on sedimentary coasts in Greenland and present shoreline analysis of two sedimentary coastal sites. We show how the position of the shoreline has changed since the 1930'ies and we address the responsible factors controlling this evolution. The hotspots of coastal change are all located near delta mouths and the detected changes are coupled to dominating process occurring here.

  5. Cultural Resilience of Nenets Social-Ecological Systems in Arctic Russia: A Focus on Reindeer Nomads of the Tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forbes, B. C.

    2013-12-01

    Empirical data on resilience in social-ecological systems (SESs) are reviewed from local and regional scale case studies among full-time nomads in the neighbouring Nenets and Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Okrugs, Russia. The focus is on critical cultural factors contributing to SES resilience. In particular, this work presents an integrated view of people situated in specific tundra landscapes that face significantly different prospects for adaptation depending on existing or planned infrastructure associated with oil and gas development. Factors contributing to general resilience are compared to those that are adapted to certain spatial and temporal contexts. Environmental factors include ample space and an abundance of resources, such as fish and game (e.g. geese), to augment the diet of not only the migratory herders, but also residents from coastal settlements. In contrast to other regions, such as the Nenets Okrug, Yamal Nenets households consist of intact nuclear families with high retention among youth in the nomadic tundra population. Accepting attitudes toward exogenous drivers such as climate change and industrial development appear to play a significant role in how people react to both extreme weather events and piecemeal confiscation or degradation of territory. Consciousness of their role as responsible stewards of the territories they occupy has likely been a factor in maintaining viable wildlife populations over centuries. Institutions administering reindeer herding have remained flexible, especially on Yamal, and so accommodate decision-making that is sensitive to herders' needs and timetables. This affects factors such as herd demography, mobility and energetics. Resilience is further facilitated within the existing governance regimes by herders' own agency, most recently in the post-Soviet shift to smaller, privately managed herds that can better utilize available pastures in a highly dynamic environment experiencing rapid socio-economic, climate and

  6. Can antibrowsing defense regulate the spread of woody vegetation in arctic tundra?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bryant, John P.; Joly, Kyle; Chapin, F. Stuart; DeAngelis, Donald L.; Kielland, Knut

    2014-01-01

    Global climate warming is projected to promote the increase of woody plants, especially shrubs, in arctic tundra. Many factors may affect the extent of this increase, including browsing by mammals. We hypothesize that across the Arctic the effect of browsing will vary because of regional variation in antibrowsing chemical defense. Using birch (Betula) as a case study, we propose that browsing is unlikely to retard birch expansion in the region extending eastward from the Lena River in central Siberia across Beringia and the continental tundra of central and eastern Canada where the more effectively defended resin birches predominate. Browsing is more likely to retard birch expansion in tundra west of the Lena to Fennoscandia, Iceland, Greenland and South Baffin Island where the less effectively defended non-resin birches predominate. Evidence from the literature supports this hypothesis. We further suggest that the effect of warming on the supply of plant-available nitrogen will not significantly change either this pan-Arctic pattern of variation in antibrowsing defense or the resultant effect that browsing has on birch expansion in tundra. However, within central and east Beringia warming-caused increases in plant-available nitrogen combined with wildfire could initiate amplifying feedback loops that could accelerate shrubification of tundra by the more effectively defended resin birches. This accelerated shrubification of tundra by resin birch, if extensive, could reduce the food supply of caribou causing population declines. We conclude with a brief discussion of modeling methods that show promise in projecting invasion of tundra by woody plants.

  7. Frequent fires in ancient shrub tundra: implications of paleorecords for arctic environmental change.

    PubMed

    Higuera, Philip E; Brubaker, Linda B; Anderson, Patricia M; Brown, Thomas A; Kennedy, Alison T; Hu, Feng Sheng

    2008-03-05

    Understanding feedbacks between terrestrial and atmospheric systems is vital for predicting the consequences of global change, particularly in the rapidly changing Arctic. Fire is a key process in this context, but the consequences of altered fire regimes in tundra ecosystems are rarely considered, largely because tundra fires occur infrequently on the modern landscape. We present paleoecological data that indicate frequent tundra fires in northcentral Alaska between 14,000 and 10,000 years ago. Charcoal and pollen from lake sediments reveal that ancient birch-dominated shrub tundra burned as often as modern boreal forests in the region, every 144 years on average (+/- 90 s.d.; n = 44). Although paleoclimate interpretations and data from modern tundra fires suggest that increased burning was aided by low effective moisture, vegetation cover clearly played a critical role in facilitating the paleofires by creating an abundance of fine fuels. These records suggest that greater fire activity will likely accompany temperature-related increases in shrub-dominated tundra predicted for the 21(st) century and beyond. Increased tundra burning will have broad impacts on physical and biological systems as well as on land-atmosphere interactions in the Arctic, including the potential to release stored organic carbon to the atmosphere.

  8. [Vegetation biomass distribution characteristics of alpine tundra ecosystem in Changbai Mountains].

    PubMed

    Wei, Jing; Wu, Gang; Deng, Hongbing

    2004-11-01

    Climate change is one of the hotspots in global environment concerns, while alpine tundra ecosystem is most sensitive to global climate change. Because of the relatively small area of tundra, researches on alpine tundra ecosystem were much less. Based on the measurement of species biomass, dominant species organ biomass and vegetation biomass, this paper discussed the biomass spatial variation in alpine tundra ecosystem of Changbai Mountains. The results showed that among 43 species investigated, the first five species in biomass were Rhododendron chrysanthum (159.01 kg x hm(-2)), Vaccinium uliginosum var. alpinum (137.52 kg x hm(-2)), Vaccinium uliginosum (134.7 kg x hm(-2)), Dryas octopetala var. asiatica (131.5 kg x hm(-2)) and Salix rotundifolia (128.4 kg x hm(-2)), which were the dominant species in the alpine tundra ecosystem of Changbai Mountains. Along with increasing altitude, the ratio of below-/above-ground biomass and below-ground/total biomass gradually increased, while the vegetation biomass gradually decreased. The vegetation biomass showed a significant correlation with altitude in typical alpine tundra ecosystem of Changbai Mountains, and the average vegetation biomass was 2.21 t x hm(-2). Alpine tundra ecosystem is very important for microclimate regulation, soil improvement, water-holding, soil conservation, nutrient cycling, carbon fixation and oxygen production, and currently, it is the CO2 sink of Changbai Mountains.

  9. How will Shrub Expansion Impact Soil Carbon Sequestration in Arctic Tundra?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Czimczik, C. I.; Holden, S. R.; He, Y.; Randerson, J. T.

    2015-12-01

    Multiple lines of evidence suggest that plant productivity, and especially shrub abundance, is increasing in the Arctic in response to climate change. This greening is substantiated by increases in the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index, repeat photography and field observations. The implications of a greener Arctic on carbon sequestration by tundra ecosystems remain poorly understood. Here, we explore existing datasets of plant productivity and soil carbon stocks to quantify how greening, and in particular an expansion of woody shrubs, may translate to the sequestration of carbon in arctic soils. As an estimate of carbon storage in arctic tundra soils, we used the Northern Circumpolar Soil Carbon Database v2. As estimates of tundra type and productivity, we used the Circumpolar Arctic Vegetation map as well as the MODIS and Landsat Vegetation Continuous Fields, and MODIS GPP/NPP (MOD17) products. Preliminary findings suggest that in graminoid tundra and erect-shrub tundra higher shrub abundance is associated with greater soil carbon stocks. However, this relationship between shrub abundance and soil carbon is not apparent in prostrate-shrub tundra, or when comparing across graminoid tundra, erect-shrub tundra and prostrate-shrub tundra. Uncertainties originate from the extreme spatial (vertical and horizontal) heterogeneity of organic matter distribution in cryoturbated soils, the fact that (some) permafrost carbon stocks, e.g. yedoma, reflect previous rather than current vegetative cover, and small sample sizes, esp. in the High Arctic. Using Vegetation Continuous Fields and MODIS GPP/NPP (MOD17), we develop quantitative trajectories of soil carbon storage as a function of shrub cover and plant productivity in the Arctic (>60°N). We then compare our greening-derived carbon sequestration estimates to projected losses of carbon from thawing permafrost. Our findings will reduce uncertainties in the magnitude and timing of the carbon-climate feedback from the

  10. Succession Stages of Tundra Plant Communities Following Wildfire Disturbance in Arctic Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Breen, A. L.; Hollingsworth, T. N.; Mack, M. C.; Jones, B. M.

    2015-12-01

    Rapid climate change is affecting climate-sensitive disturbance regimes throughout the world. In particular, the impacts of climate change on Arctic disturbance regimes are poorly understood because landscape-scale disturbances are infrequent or occur in remote localities. Wildfire in Arctic Alaska is presently limited by ignition source and favorable burn weather. With rapid climate change, a lengthening growing season, and subsequent increase in plant biomass and productivity, wildfire frequency and annual area burned in tundra ecosystems is expected to increase over the next century. Yet, post-fire tundra vegetation succession is inadequately characterized except at a few point locations. We identify succession stages of tussock tundra communities following wildfire using a chronosequence of 65 relevés in 10 tundra fire scars (1971-2011) and nearby unburned tundra from sites on the Seward Peninsula and northern foothills of the Brooks Range. We used the Braun-Blanquét approach to classify plant communities, and applied nonmetric multidimentional scaling (NMDS) to identify ecological gradients underlying community differentiation. The ordination revealed a clear differentiation between unburned and burned tundra communities. Ecological gradients, reflected by ordination axes, correspond to fire history (e.g., time since last fire, number of times burned, burn severity) and a complex productivity gradient. Post-fire species richness is less than unburned tundra; primarily reflected as a decrease in lichen species and turnover of bryophyte species immediately post-fire. Species richness of grasses increases post-fire and is greatest in communities that burned more than once in the past 30 years. Shrub cover and total aboveground biomass are greatest in repeat burn sites. We review and discuss our results focusing on the implications of a changing tundra fire regime, its effect on vegetation succession trajectories, and subsequent rates of carbon sequestration and

  11. Alaskan transect links Holocene carbon shifts to peatland paleoecology and paleoclimate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peteet, D. M.; Nichols, J. E.; Andreev, A.; McGeachy, A.; Perez, M.

    2011-12-01

    Arctic and subarctic peatlands are highly sensitive to climate shifts, and greenhouse warming is greatest at high latitudes. As high latitudes warm and peatlands provide positive and negative feedbacks in carbon sequestration, the paleo-perspective becomes critical in assessing future peatland stocks. We target a north-south (temperature) and east-west (moisture) transect of Alaskan peatlands using pollen and spores, plant macrofossils, charcoal, stable isotopes, and C/N coupled with carbon to explore the relationship of climate and vegetation shifts to carbon storage through time. Since deglaciation, peatlands have developed in a variety of maritime and continental subarctic and arctic environments with vegetation ranging from fens to bogs. Factors affecting the net carbon storage (productivity and decomposition) include the vegetation type, precipitation, temperature, bryophyte component, seasonality, snow history, fire history, and permafrost. New paleoecological records from three Holocene peatlands, each spanning at least 9000 years, include a continental boreal forest site, Goldmine Bog, Fairbanks, (65°N, 147°W), and maritime sites including Phalarope Bog, Kodiak (57°N, 154°W), and Bear Bog, Cordova (60°N, 145°W). Major shifts in moisture and temperature are evident throughout the Holocene from our multiproxy investigations of each site. Our data address several questions about subarctic/arctic carbon storage and climate, such as whether bogs or fens sequester more carbon, as this topic is intensely debated in the current literature. We also compare shifts in inferred moisture and temperature with carbon storage at each site, and with other coastal and interior sites for a fuller understanding of changes in the climate of this important region.

  12. Coastal Center

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    The U.S. Geological Survey dedicated its new Center for Coastal Geology June 12 at the University of South Florida in St. Petersburg. Robert Halley leads the staff of nine USGS scientists studying coastal erosion and pollution and underwater mineral resources in cooperation with the university's Marine Science Department. Current research is on erosion along Lake Michigan and the Gulf Coast of Louisiana. The number of USGS scientists at the center should increase to 30 over five years.

  13. Recent and Holocene climate change controls on vegetation and carbon accumulation in Alaskan coastal muskegs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peteet, Dorothy M.; Nichols, Jonathan E.; Moy, Christopher M.; McGeachy, Alicia; Perez, Max

    2016-01-01

    Pollen, spore, macrofossil and carbon data from a peatland near Cordova, Alaska, reveal insights into the climate-vegetation-carbon interactions from the initiation of the Holocene, c. the last 11.5 ka, to the present (1 ka = 1000 calibrated years before present where 0 = 1950 CE). The Holocene period is characterized by early deposition of gyttja in a pond environment with aquatics such as Nuphar polysepalum and Potamogeton, and a significant regional presence of Alnus crispa subsp. sinuata. Carbon accumulation (50 g/m2/a) was high for a short interval in the early Holocene when Sphagnum peat accumulated, but was followed by a major decline to 13 g/m2/a from 7 to 3.7 ka when Cyperaceae and ericads such as Rhododendron (formerly Ledum) groenlandicum expanded. This shift to sedge growth is representative of many peatlands throughout the south-central region of Alaska, and indicates a drier, more evaporative environment with a large decline in carbon storage. The subsequent return to Sphagnum peat after 4 ka in the Neoglacial represents a widespread shift to moister, cooler conditions, which favored a resurgence of ericads, such as Andromeda polifolia, and increased carbon accumulation rate. The sustained Alnus expansion visible in the top 10 cm of the peat profile is correlative with glacial retreat and warming of the region in the last century, and suggests this colonization will continue as temperature increases and ice melts.

  14. Remotely Sensing Tundra Fire Impacts Using InSAR

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, L.; Schaefer, K. M.; Jafarov, E. E.; Williams, C. A.; Rogan, J.; Zebker, H. A.

    2013-12-01

    Fire is a major disturbance affecting the arctic tundra and boreal forests, with a significant impacts on the ecosystem, soil hydrology, carbon cycling, and permafrost. The increasing trend in frequency and severity of large fires since 1980, associated with progressively drier conditions, is expected to continue and lead to still greater impacts. In this study, we explore the use of Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) to map and quantify several results of tundra fires, including fire severity, the increase in permafrost active layer thickness (ALT), and changes in organic layer thickness. Here we present as an example observations of the Anaktuvuk River fire on the North Slope of Alaska, which burned over 1,000 km2 of tundra in the summer of 2007. Fire causes an abrupt change in the surface scattering characteristics and results in a large drop in InSAR coherence. The magnitude of coherence loss is proportional to the amount of vegetation burned, and thus fire severity. Coherence between two PALSAR images taken by the Japanese ALOS satellite before and after the Anaktuvuk River fire shows a spatial pattern consistent with a map of burn severity based on optical MODIS images using differential Normalized Burn Ratio. Additionally, we used InSAR to calculate the seasonal ground subsidence for the 2006 and 2009 thaw seasons representing pre- and post-fire conditions, and estimated the change in ALT using a retrieval algorithm. Our results are consistent with the 8 to 24 cm ALT increases derived from in situ probing measurements, which we relate to the change in the organic layer thickness due to the fire. Our results illustrate the potential of InSAR for remote sensing of fire impacts in Arctic regions. (a) Burn severity for the Anaktuvuk Rivre Fire based on differential Normalized Burn Ratio (dNBR) from MODIS images. (b) Interferometric coherence loss due to the fire. Spatial mean has been subtracted. Negative values (yellow and red colors) indicate

  15. Applications of remote sensing data to the Alaskan environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Belon, A. E.; Iller, J. M.

    1973-01-01

    The ERTS program provides a means to overcome the formidable logistic and economic costs of preparing environmental surveys of the vast and relatively unexplored regions of Alaska. There is an excellent potential in satellite remote sensing to benefit Federal, state, local, and private agencies, by providing a new synoptic data base which is necessary for the preparation of the needed surveys and the search for solutions to environmental management problems. One approach in coupling satellite data to Alaskan problems is a major program initiated by the University of Alaska and funded by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. This included 12 projects whose aims were to study the feasibility of applying ERTS data to the disciplines of ecology, agriculture, hydrology, wildlife management, oceanography, geology, glaciology, volcanology, and archaeology.

  16. Development of Alaskan gas hydrate resources. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Kamath, V.A.; Sharma, G.D.; Patil, S.L.

    1991-06-01

    The research undertaken in this project pertains to study of various techniques for production of natural gas from Alaskan gas hydrates such as, depressurization, injection of hot water, steam, brine, methanol and ethylene glycol solutions through experimental investigation of decomposition characteristics of hydrate cores. An experimental study has been conducted to measure the effective gas permeability changes as hydrates form in the sandpack and the results have been used to determine the reduction in the effective gas permeability of the sandpack as a function of hydrate saturation. A user friendly, interactive, menu-driven, numerical difference simulator has been developed to model the dissociation of natural gas hydrates in porous media with variable thermal properties. A numerical, finite element simulator has been developed to model the dissociation of hydrates during hot water injection process.

  17. Biocorrosive Thermophilic Microbial Communities in Alaskan North Slope Oil Facilities

    SciTech Connect

    Duncan, Kathleen E.; Gieg, Lisa M.; Parisi, Victoria A.; Tanner, Ralph S.; Green Tringe, Susannah; Bristow, Jim; Suflita, Joseph M.

    2009-09-16

    Corrosion of metallic oilfield pipelines by microorganisms is a costly but poorly understood phenomenon, with standard treatment methods targeting mesophilic sulfatereducing bacteria. In assessing biocorrosion potential at an Alaskan North Slope oil field, we identified thermophilic hydrogen-using methanogens, syntrophic bacteria, peptideand amino acid-fermenting bacteria, iron reducers, sulfur/thiosulfate-reducing bacteria and sulfate-reducing archaea. These microbes can stimulate metal corrosion through production of organic acids, CO2, sulfur species, and via hydrogen oxidation and iron reduction, implicating many more types of organisms than are currently targeted. Micromolar quantities of putative anaerobic metabolites of C1-C4 n-alkanes in pipeline fluids were detected, implying that these low molecular weight hydrocarbons, routinely injected into reservoirs for oil recovery purposes, are biodegraded and provide biocorrosive microbial communities with an important source of nutrients.

  18. Air-cushion tankers for Alaskan North Slope oil

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, J. L.

    1973-01-01

    A concept is described for transporting oil from the Arctic to southern markets in 10,000-ton, chemically fueled air-cushion vehicles (ACV's) configured as tankers. Based on preliminary cost estimates the conceptual ACV tanker system as tailored to the transportation of Alaskan North Slope oil could deliver the oil for about the same price per barrel as the proposed trans-Alaska pipeline with only one-third of the capital investment. The report includes the description of the conceptual system and its operation; preliminary cost estimates; an appraisal of ACV tanker development; and a comparison of system costs, versatility, vulnerability, and ecological effect with those of the trans-Alaska pipeline.

  19. Aerobic Methane Oxidation in Alaskan Lakes Along a Latitudinal Transect

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martinez-Cruz, K. C.; Sepulveda-Jauregui, A.; Walter Anthony, K. M.; Anthony, P.; Thalasso, F.

    2013-12-01

    Karla Martinez-Cruz* **, Armando Sepulveda-Jauregui*, Katey M. Walter Anthony*, Peter Anthony*, and Frederic Thalasso**. * Water and Environmental Research Center, Institute of Northern Engineering, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, Alaska. ** Biotechnology and Bioengineering Department, Cinvestav, Mexico city, D. F., Mexico. Methane (CH4) is the third most important greenhouse gas in the atmosphere, after carbon dioxide and water vapor. Boreal lakes play an important role in the current global warming by contributing as much as 6% of global atmospheric CH4 sources annually. On the other hand, aerobic methane oxidation (methanotrophy) in lake water is a fundamental process in global methane cycling that reduces the amount of CH4 emissions to the atmosphere. Several environmental factors affect aerobic methane oxidation in the water column both directly and indirectly, including concentration of CH4 and O2, temperature and carbon budgets of lakes. We analyzed the potential of aerobic methane oxidation (PMO) rates in incubations of water collected from 30 Alaskan lakes along a north-south transect during winter and summer 2011. Our findings showed an effect of CH4 and O2 concentrations, temperature and yedoma thawing permafrost on PMO activity in the lake water. The highest PMO rates were observed in summer by lakes situated on thawing yedoma permafrost, most of them located in the interior of Alaska. We also estimated that 60-80% of all CH4 produced in Alaskan lakes could be taken up by methanotrophs in the lake water column, showing the significant influence of aerobic methane oxidation of boreal lakes to the global CH4 budget.

  20. Linkage among Vegetation, Microbes and Methanogenic Pathways in Alaskan Peatlands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, L.; Sidelinger, W.; Shu, H.; Varner, R. K.; Hines, M. E.

    2014-12-01

    Northern wetlands are thought to account for one third of the naturally emitted CH4. However, methane production pathways in northern peatlands are poorly understood, yet are predicted to change in response to vegetation shifts due to warming. Previous studies noted that acetate conversion to methane (acetoclastic methanogenesis, AM) in northern wetlands is largely impeded and acetate accumulates, however AM tends to increase with minerotrophy. To understand methanogenic pathways and to provide linkage among pathways, we studied Alaskan wetlands in 2013 and 2014. In 2013, laboratory incubations were conducted in three peatlands representing trophic gradients from bogs to fens. During 2014, 37 different sites in Fairbanks and Anchorage were studied that represented wetlands with pH values from 3.5 to 5.5 and vegetation from primarily Sphagnum to sedges. Measurements in 2014 included vegetation composition, gases (CH4, CO2, H2, and CO), 13CH4 and 13CO2, volatile fatty acids, DOC, other electron acceptors. Further incubation studies are being conducted to decipher controls on decomposition pathways. Gene sequencing was used to characterize microbial community composition, and metagenomic and transcriptomics were conducted to describe community activity. Results showed that methanogenesis was higher in fens than bogs, but hydrogenotrophic methanogenesis (HM) was dominant at all sites. End product ratios showed that AM was occurring in fens, albeit slowly. Fermentation was an important end-point in decomposition and microbial syntrophy was weak. These data, regardless of trophic status, differed greatly from data obtained from temperate wetlands in which terminal respiratory processes were strong and C flow through syntrophy was important. Trophic status influenced C flow in the Alaskan sites, but terminal processes were weak and end product formation tended to end at primary fermentation, which dominated as the terminal step in decomposition.

  1. BRDF characteristics of tundra vegetation communities in Yamal, Western Siberia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buchhorn, Marcel; Heim, Birgit; Walker, Donald A. Skip; Epstein, Howard; Leibman, Marina

    2013-04-01

    Satellite data from platforms with pointing capabilities (CHRIS/Proba, RapidEye) or from sensors with wide swath (AVHRR, MODIS, MERIS) is influenced by the bidirectional reflectance distribution function (BRDF). This effect can cause significant changes in the measured spectral surface reflectance depending on the solar illumination geometry and sensor viewing conditions. The Environmental Mapping and Analysis Program (EnMAP), a German hyperspectral mission with expected launch in 2016, will provide high spectral resolution observations with a ground sampling distance of 30 meters. Since the EnMAP sensor has pointing capabilities, both spectral and directional reflection characteristics need to be taken into account for the algorithms development for vegetation parameters. The 'hyperspectral method development for Arctic VEGetation biomes' (hy-Arc-VEG) project is part of the national preparation program for the EnMAP mission. Within the EnMAP projcect hy-Arc-VEG we developed a portable field spectro-goniometer, named ManTIS (Manual Transportable Instrument for Spherical BRDF observations), for the in-situ measurements of anisotropic effects of tundra surfaces (national and international patent pending - DE 102011117713.6). The goniometer was designed for field use in difficult as well as challenging terrain and climate. It is therefore of low weight, without electrical devices and weatherproof. It can be disassembled and packed into small boxes for transport. The current off-nadir viewing capacity is matched to the EnMAP sensor configuration (up to 30°). We carried out spectral field and goniometer measurements on the joint YAMAL 2011 expedition (RU-US-DE) organized by the Earth-Cryosphere Institute (ECI) in August 2011 on the Yamal Peninsula, northwestern Siberia, Russia. The field goniometer measurements (conducted under varying sun zenith angles) as well as field spectro-radiometrical measurements were carried out at the NASA Yamal Land Cover/Land Use Change

  2. From Tropics to Tundra: Global Convergence in Plant Functioning

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reich, Peter B.; Walters, Michael B.; Ellsworth, David S.

    1997-12-01

    Despite striking differences in climate, soils, and evolutionary history among diverse biomes ranging from tropical and temperate forests to alpine tundra and desert, we found similar interspecific relationships among leaf structure and function and plant growth in all biomes. Our results thus demonstrate convergent evolution and global generality in plant functioning, despite the enormous diversity of plant species and biomes. For 280 plant species from two global data sets, we found that potential carbon gain (photosynthesis) and carbon loss (respiration) increase in similar proportion with decreasing leaf life-span, increasing leaf nitrogen concentration, and increasing leaf surface area-to-mass ratio. Productivity of individual plants and of leaves in vegetation canopies also changes in constant proportion to leaf life-span and surface area-to-mass ratio. These global plant functional relationships have significant implications for global scale modeling of vegetation-atmosphere CO2 exchange.

  3. Spatial Scale Gaps of Turbulent Heat Fluxes in Arctic Tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fochesatto, G. J.; Gruber, M. A.; Cristóbal-Rosselló, J.; Edgar, C.; Kane, D. L.

    2013-12-01

    Large-area averaged turbulent fluxes of scalars (heat and carbon) play an important role in climate and ecosystem models by resolving the scale-gap closure defining top-down and bottom-up scaling schemes. Large Aperture Scintillometer (LAS) measurement of the refractive index structure function (CN2) allows for indirect retrieval of area-averaged (>km2) atmospheric boundary layer sensible heat fluxes. In this work we report observations of LAS in Arctic tundra at Imnavait Creek Basin. LAS-derived fluxes are compared to more localized measurements of heat fluxes obtained by an eddy-covariance (EC) system distributed across the basin. This article discusses the divergence observed in the temporal series of LAS-fluxes in comparison to spatially distributed measurements of EC-fluxes. The comparison stresses the role of the Arctic ABL structure, terrain-flow characteristics and radiative fluxes in the overall spatial representation of fluxes.

  4. Controls over nutrient flow through plants and microbes in Arctic tundra. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Schimel, J.

    1994-02-01

    Ecosystem productivity in the Arctic is strongly controlled by N availability to plants. Thus, disturbances to the Arctic system are likely to have their greatest impacts by altering the supply of nutrients to plants. Thus, to understand the dynamics of Arctic tundra, a complete understanding of the controls on N cycling in tundra soils is necessary. This project focused on understanding nutrient dynamics in arctic tussock tundra, specifically evaluating the role of microbial uptake and competition for nutrients as a control on plant N-uptake. The project consisted of several major components: Short- and long-term partitioning of NH{sub 4}{sup +} in tussock tundra (1990--1991); Measurement of NH{sub 4}{sup +} uptake rates by Eriophorum vaginatum and by soil microbes; Determination of microbial NH{sub 4}{sup +} and NO{sub 3}{minus} uptake kinetics; and Determination of the partitioning of NH{sub 4}{sup +} and amino acids between E. vaginatum and soil microbes.

  5. Potential responses of tundra ecosystems to perturbations from energy development. Part I. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Oechel, W.C.

    1986-01-01

    This report discusses research conducted to understand the effects of energy development on changes in nutrient status, changes in water flow and water availability, and changes in surface energy balance of the arctic tundra. (ACR)

  6. Transformation of nitrogen compounds in the tundra soils of Northern Fennoscandia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maslov, M. N.; Makarov, M. I.

    2016-07-01

    The transformation of organic nitrogen compounds in the soils of tundra ecosystems of Northern Fennoscandia has been studied under laboratory and natural conditions. Tundra soils contain significant reserves of total nitrogen, but they are poor in its extractable mineral and organic forms. The potential rates of the net mineralization and net immobilization of nitrogen by microorganisms vary among the soils and depend on the C: N ratio in the extractable organic matter and microbial biomass of soil. Under natural conditions, the rate of nitrogen net mineralization is lower than the potential rate determined under laboratory conditions by 6-25 times. The incubation of tundra soils in the presence of plants does not result in the accumulation of mineral nitrogen compounds either in the soil or in microbial biomass. This confirms the high competitive capacity of plants under conditions of limited nitrogen availability in tundra ecosystems.

  7. Geochemical drivers of organic matter decomposition in Arctic tundra soils

    SciTech Connect

    Herndon, Elizabeth M.; Yang, Ziming; Graham, David E.; Wullschleger, Stan D.; Gu, Baohua; Liang, Liyuan; Bargar, John; Janot, Noemie; Regier, Tom Z.

    2015-12-07

    Climate change is warming tundra ecosystems in the Arctic, resulting in the decomposition of previously-frozen soil organic matter (SOM) and release of carbon (C) to the atmosphere; however, the processes that control SOM decomposition and C emissions remain highly uncertain. In this study, we evaluate geochemical factors that influence anaerobic production of carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) in the active layers of four ice-wedge polygons. Surface and soil pore waters were collected during the annual thaw season over a two-year period in an area containing waterlogged, low-centered polygons and well-drained, high-centered polygons. We report spatial and seasonal patterns of dissolved gases in relation to the geochemical properties of Fe and organic C as determined using spectroscopic and chromatographic techniques. Iron was present as Fe(II) in soil solution near the permafrost boundary but enriched as Fe(III) in the middle of the active layer, similar to dissolved aromatic-C and organic acids. Dissolved CH4 increased relative to dissolved CO2 with depth and varied with soil moisture in the middle of the active layer in patterns that were positively correlated with the proportion of dissolved Fe(III) in transitional and low-centered polygon soils but negatively correlated in the drier flat- and high-centered polygons. These results suggest that microbial-mediated Fe oxidation and reduction influence respiration/fermentation of SOM and production of substrates (e.g., low-molecular-weight organic acids) for methanogenesis. As a result, we infer that geochemical differences induced by water saturation dictate microbial products of SOM decomposition, and Fe geochemistry is an important factor regulating methanogenesis in anoxic tundra soils.

  8. Geochemical drivers of organic matter decomposition in Arctic tundra soils

    DOE PAGES

    Herndon, Elizabeth M.; Yang, Ziming; Graham, David E.; Wullschleger, Stan D.; Gu, Baohua; Liang, Liyuan; Bargar, John; Janot, Noemie; Regier, Tom Z.

    2015-12-07

    Climate change is warming tundra ecosystems in the Arctic, resulting in the decomposition of previously-frozen soil organic matter (SOM) and release of carbon (C) to the atmosphere; however, the processes that control SOM decomposition and C emissions remain highly uncertain. In this study, we evaluate geochemical factors that influence anaerobic production of carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) in the active layers of four ice-wedge polygons. Surface and soil pore waters were collected during the annual thaw season over a two-year period in an area containing waterlogged, low-centered polygons and well-drained, high-centered polygons. We report spatial and seasonal patterns ofmore » dissolved gases in relation to the geochemical properties of Fe and organic C as determined using spectroscopic and chromatographic techniques. Iron was present as Fe(II) in soil solution near the permafrost boundary but enriched as Fe(III) in the middle of the active layer, similar to dissolved aromatic-C and organic acids. Dissolved CH4 increased relative to dissolved CO2 with depth and varied with soil moisture in the middle of the active layer in patterns that were positively correlated with the proportion of dissolved Fe(III) in transitional and low-centered polygon soils but negatively correlated in the drier flat- and high-centered polygons. These results suggest that microbial-mediated Fe oxidation and reduction influence respiration/fermentation of SOM and production of substrates (e.g., low-molecular-weight organic acids) for methanogenesis. As a result, we infer that geochemical differences induced by water saturation dictate microbial products of SOM decomposition, and Fe geochemistry is an important factor regulating methanogenesis in anoxic tundra soils.« less

  9. Climate feedbacks at the tundra-taiga interface.

    PubMed

    Harding, Richard; Kuhry, Peter; Christensen, Torben R; Sykes, Martin T; Dankers, Rutger; van der Linden, Sandra

    2002-08-01

    Feedbacks, or internal interactions, play a crucial role in the climate system. Negative feedback will reduce the impact of an external perturbation, a positive feedback will amplify the effect and could lead to an unstable system. Many of the feedbacks found in the climate system are positive; thus, for example, increasing CO2 levels will increase temperature, reduce the snow cover, increase the absorption of radiation and hence increase temperature further. The most obvious feedbacks, such as the snow example quoted above, are already included within our models of the climate and earth system. Others, such as the impact of increasing forest cover due to global warming, are only just being included. Others, such as, the impact of global warming on the northern peatlands and the impact of freshwater flows on the Arctic Ocean are not yet considered. The contrast in surface characteristics between low tundra vegetation to high taiga forest is considerable. The contrast is greatest in the winter, when the tundra is snow covered but the trees of the taiga protrude through the snow pack, and is probably the greatest contrast found on the land surface anywhere. This variation causes massive changes in the energy fluxes at the surface and hence the temperature conditions on the ground and within the atmosphere. There will be large resultant changes in the vegetation development, the carbon fluxes, the permafrost and the hydrology. The Arctic is already experiencing change and it is essential for us to understand the basic processes, and how these interact, to be confident of our predictions of environmental change in the future.

  10. Fourfold higher tundra volatile emissions due to arctic summer warming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lindwall, Frida; Schollert, Michelle; Michelsen, Anders; Blok, Daan; Rinnan, Riikka

    2016-03-01

    Biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs), which are mainly emitted by vegetation, may create either positive or negative climate forcing feedbacks. In the Subarctic, BVOC emissions are highly responsive to temperature, but the effects of climatic warming on BVOC emissions have not been assessed in more extreme arctic ecosystems. The Arctic undergoes rapid climate change, with air temperatures increasing at twice the rate of the global mean. Also, the amount of winter precipitation is projected to increase in large areas of the Arctic, and it is unknown how winter snow depth affects BVOC emissions during summer. Here we examine the responses of BVOC emissions to experimental summer warming and winter snow addition—each treatment alone and in combination—in an arctic heath during two growing seasons. We observed a 280% increase relative to ambient in BVOC emissions in response to a 4°C summer warming. Snow addition had minor effects on growing season BVOC emissions after one winter but decreased BVOC emissions after the second winter. We also examined differences between canopy and air temperatures and found that the tundra canopy surface was on average 7.7°C and maximum 21.6°C warmer than air. This large difference suggests that the tundra surface temperature is an important driver for emissions of BVOCs, which are temperature dependent. Our results demonstrate a strong response of BVOC emissions to increasing temperatures in the Arctic, suggesting that emission rates will increase with climate warming and thereby feed back to regional climate change.

  11. Using Discriminant Analysis to Examine Spectral Differences Among Four Tundra Vegetation Communities at Ivotuk, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bratsch, S.; Epstein, H. E.

    2014-12-01

    Warming in the Arctic has resulted in changes in the distribution and composition of tundra vegetation in addition to a lengthening of the growing season. Past studies have mapped tundra vegetation at relatively coarse spatial scales; however, vegetation changes in the Arctic are occurring at spatial scales within a few meters. This research uses hyperspectral remote sensing data to differentiate among four vegetation communities at Ivotuk, Alaska (68.49°N, 155.74°W). Ivotuk is located on the North Slope, and is dominated by four plant communities including moist acidic tundra (MAT), moist nonacidic tundra (MNT), mossy tussock tundra (MT), and shrub tundra (ST). Hand-held hyperspectral data were collected during the 1999 growing season (5 June-27 August) at biweekly intervals using narrow, ~1.42 nm wavebands. Only wavebands within 400-1060 nm were used in analysis. Two sets of comparisons were conducted using stepwise discriminant analysis: 1) MNT and ST, and 2) all four tundra plant communities. MNT and ST classification accuracy ranged from 91.3-100%, with 100% classification and cross-validated accuracy occurring on 27 July. Classification accuracy for the overall growing season was 97.9% for MNT and 98.1% for ST. The stepwise function indicated 18 significant bands including 8 near infrared (NIR) and 4 blue bands. MAT, MNT, MT, and ST classification accuracy ranged from 58-100%, with greatest classification accuracy (100%) also occurring during peak growing season on 27 July. Overall classification accuracy for the growing season was 97.6% for MNT, 92% for MT, 84% for ST, and 70.8% for MAT. There were 14 significant bands including 6 NIR and 3 blue bands. The results presented here demonstrate that discriminant analysis can be useful in distinguishing among the dominant tundra vegetation communities in the Arctic, and can potentially help us to better understand and monitor arctic vegetation and ecosystem responses to environmental changes.

  12. Multi-Sensor Approach for Assessing the Taiga-Tundra Boundary

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ranson, K. J.; Sun, G.; Kharuk, V. I.; Kovacs, K.

    2003-01-01

    Monitoring the dynamics of the tundra-taiga boundary is critical for our understanding of the causes and consequences of the changes in this area. Because of its inaccessibility, remote sensing data will play an important role. In this study we examined the use of several remote sensing techniques for identifying the existing tundra-taiga ecotone. These include Landsat, MISR and RADARSAT data. High-resolution IKONOS images were used for local ground truth. It was found that on Landsat ETM+ summer images, reflectance from tundra and taiga at band 4 (NIR) is similar, but different at other bands such as red, and MIR bands. When the incidence angle is small, C-band HH-pol backscattering coefficients from both tundra and taiga are relatively high. The backscattering from tundra targets decreases faster than taiga targets when the incidence angle increases, because the tundra targets look smoother than taiga. Because of the shading effect of the vegetation, the MISR data, both multi-spectral data at nadir looking and multi-angle data at red and NIR bands, clearly show the transition zone.

  13. Belowground plant biomass allocation in tundra ecosystems and its relationship with temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Peng; Heijmans, Monique M. P. D.; Mommer, Liesje; van Ruijven, Jasper; Maximov, Trofim C.; Berendse, Frank

    2016-05-01

    Climate warming is known to increase the aboveground productivity of tundra ecosystems. Recently, belowground biomass is receiving more attention, but the effects of climate warming on belowground productivity remain unclear. Enhanced understanding of the belowground component of the tundra is important in the context of climate warming, since most carbon is sequestered belowground in these ecosystems. In this study we synthesized published tundra belowground biomass data from 36 field studies spanning a mean annual temperature (MAT) gradient from ‑20 °C to 0 °C across the tundra biome, and determined the relationships between different plant biomass pools and MAT. Our results show that the plant community biomass–temperature relationships are significantly different between above and belowground. Aboveground biomass clearly increased with MAT, whereas total belowground biomass and fine root biomass did not show a significant increase over the broad MAT gradient. Our results suggest that biomass allocation of tundra vegetation shifts towards aboveground in warmer conditions, which could impact on the carbon cycling in tundra ecosystems through altered litter input and distribution in the soil, as well as possible changes in root turnover.

  14. Fire behavior, weather, and burn severity of the 2007 anaktuvuk river tundra fire, North Slope, Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jones, B.; Kolden, C.; Jandt, R.; Abatzoglou, J.; Urban, F.; Arp, C.

    2009-01-01

    In 2007, the Anaktuvuk River Fire (ARF) became the largest recorded tundra fire on the North Slope of Alaska. The ARF burned for nearly three months, consuming more than 100,000 ha. At its peak in early September, the ARF burned at a rate of 7000 ha d-1. The conditions potentially responsible for this large tundra fire include modeled record high summer temperature and record low summer precipitation, a late-season high-pressure system located over the Beaufort Sea, extremely dry soil conditions throughout the summer, and sustained southerly winds during the period of vegetation senescence. Burn severity mapping revealed that more than 80% of the ARF burned at moderate to extreme severity, while the nearby Kuparuk River Fire remained small and burned at predominantly (80%) low severity. While this study provides information that may aid in the prediction of future large tundra fires in northern Alaska, the fact that three other tundra fires that occurred in 2007 combined to burn less than 1000 ha suggests site specific complexities associated with tundra fires on the North Slope, which may hamper the development of tundra fire forecasting models.

  15. Belowground plant biomass allocation in tundra ecosystems and its relationship with temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Peng; Heijmans, Monique M. P. D.; Mommer, Liesje; van Ruijven, Jasper; Maximov, Trofim C.; Berendse, Frank

    2016-05-01

    Climate warming is known to increase the aboveground productivity of tundra ecosystems. Recently, belowground biomass is receiving more attention, but the effects of climate warming on belowground productivity remain unclear. Enhanced understanding of the belowground component of the tundra is important in the context of climate warming, since most carbon is sequestered belowground in these ecosystems. In this study we synthesized published tundra belowground biomass data from 36 field studies spanning a mean annual temperature (MAT) gradient from -20 °C to 0 °C across the tundra biome, and determined the relationships between different plant biomass pools and MAT. Our results show that the plant community biomass-temperature relationships are significantly different between above and belowground. Aboveground biomass clearly increased with MAT, whereas total belowground biomass and fine root biomass did not show a significant increase over the broad MAT gradient. Our results suggest that biomass allocation of tundra vegetation shifts towards aboveground in warmer conditions, which could impact on the carbon cycling in tundra ecosystems through altered litter input and distribution in the soil, as well as possible changes in root turnover.

  16. Tundra ecosystems observed to be CO2 sources due to differential amplification of the carbon cycle.

    PubMed

    Belshe, E F; Schuur, E A G; Bolker, B M

    2013-10-01

    Are tundra ecosystems currently a carbon source or sink? What is the future trajectory of tundra carbon fluxes in response to climate change? These questions are of global importance because of the vast quantities of organic carbon stored in permafrost soils. In this meta-analysis, we compile 40 years of CO2 flux observations from 54 studies spanning 32 sites across northern high latitudes. Using time-series analysis, we investigated if seasonal or annual CO2 fluxes have changed over time, and whether spatial differences in mean annual temperature could help explain temporal changes in CO2 flux. Growing season net CO2 uptake has definitely increased since the 1990s; the data also suggest (albeit less definitively) an increase in winter CO2 emissions, especially in the last decade. In spite of the uncertainty in the winter trend, we estimate that tundra sites were annual CO2 sources from the mid-1980s until the 2000s, and data from the last 7 years show that tundra continue to emit CO2 annually. CO2 emissions exceed CO2 uptake across the range of temperatures that occur in the tundra biome. Taken together, these data suggest that despite increases in growing season uptake, tundra ecosystems are currently CO2 sources on an annual basis.

  17. Shrub expansion and climate feedbacks in Arctic tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loranty, Michael M.; Goetz, Scott J.

    2012-03-01

    Arctic tundra ecosystems stand to play a substantial role in both the magnitude and rate of global climate warming over the coming decades and centuries. The exact nature of this role will be determined by the combined effects of currently amplified rates of climate warming in the Arctic (Serreze et al 2000) and a series of related positive climate feedbacks that include mobilization of permafrost carbon (Schuur et al 2008), decreases in surface albedo (Chapin et al 2005) and evapotranspiration (ET) mediated increases in atmospheric water vapor (Swann et al 2010). Conceptually, these feedback mechanisms are intuitive and readily comprehensible: warming-induced permafrost thaw will make new soil carbon pools accessible for microbial respiration, and increased vegetation productivity, expansion of shrubs in particular, will lower surface reflectance and increase ET. However, our current understanding of these feedback mechanisms relies largely on limited and local field studies and, as such, the quantitative estimates of feedback effects on regional and global climate require spatial upscaling and uncertainty estimates derived from models. Moreover, the feedback mechanisms interact and their combined net effect on climate is highly variable and not well characterized. A recent study by Bonfils et al (2012) is among the first to explicitly examine how shrub expansion in tundra ecosystems will impact regional climate. Using an Earth system model, Bonfils et al find that an idealized 20% increase in shrub cover north of 60°N latitude will lead to annual temperature increases of 0.66 °C and 1.84 °C, respectively, when the shrubs are 0.5 m and 2 m tall. The modeled temperature increases arise from atmospheric heating as a combined consequence of decreased albedo and increased ET. The primary difference between the two cases is associated with the fact that tall shrubs protrude above the snow, thus reducing albedo year round, whereas short shrubs are completely

  18. Transport of Alaskan Dust into the Gulf of Alaska and Comparison with Similar High-Latitude Dust Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crusium, John; Levy, Rob; Wang, Jun; Campbell, Rob; Schroth, Andrew W.

    2012-01-01

    Transport of Alaskan dust into the Gulf of Alaska and comparison with similar high-latitude dust environments. An airborne flux of the micronutrient iron, derived from dust originating from coastal regions may be an important contributor of iron to the Gulf of Alaska's (GoA) oligotrophic waters. Dust blowing off glacier termini and dry riverbeds is a recurring phenomenon in Alaska, usually occurring in the autumn. Since previous studies assumed that dust originating in the deserts of Asia was the largest source of . airborne iron to the GoA, the budget of aeolian deposition of iron needs to be reassessed. Since late 20 I 0, our group has been monitoring dust activity using satellites over the Copper River Delta (CRD) where the most vigorous dust plumes have been observed. Since 2011, sample aerosol concentration and their composition are being collected at Middleton Island (100km off shore of CRD). This presentation will show a summary of the ongoing dust observations and compare with other similar environments (Patagonia, Iceland) by showing case studies. Common features will be highlighted

  19. Densities of breeding birds and changes in vegetation in an alaskan boreal forest following a massive disturbance by spruce beetles

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Matsuoka, S.M.; Handel, C.M.; Ruthrauff, D.R.

    2001-01-01

    We examined bird and plant communities among forest stands with different levels of spruce mortality following a large outbreak of spruce beetles (Dendroctonus rufipennis (Kirby)) in the Copper River Basin, Alaska. Spruce beetles avoided stands with black spruce (Picea mariana) and selectively killed larger diameter white spruce (Picea glauca), thereby altering forest structure and increasing the dominance of black spruce in the region. Alders (Alnus sp.) and crowberry (Empetrum nigrum) were more abundant in areas with heavy spruce mortality, possibly a response to the death of overstory spruce. Grasses and herbaceous plants did not proliferate as has been recorded following outbreaks in more coastal Alaskan forests. Two species closely tied to coniferous habitats, the tree-nesting Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula) and the red squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus), a major nest predator, were less abundant in forest stands with high spruce mortality than in low-mortality stands. Understory-nesting birds as a group were more abundant in forest stands with high levels of spruce mortality, although the response of individual bird species to tree mortality was variable. Birds breeding in stands with high spruce mortality likely benefited reproductively from lower squirrel densities and a greater abundance of shrubs to conceal nests from predators.

  20. Aerial surveys of endangered whales in the Alaskan Chukchi and western Beaufort Seas, 1990. Final report, Oct-Nov 90

    SciTech Connect

    Moore, S.E.; Clarke, J.T.

    1991-06-01

    In keeping with the National Environmental Policy Act (1969), the Marine Mammal Protection Act (1972) and the Endangered Species Act (1973), the OCS Lands Act Amendments (1978) established a management policy that included studies in OCS lease sale areas to ascertain potential environmental impacts of oil and gas development on OCS marine coastal environments. The Minerals Management Service (MMS) is the agency responsible for these studies and for the leasing of submerged Federal lands. The report summarizes the 1990 investigations of the distribution, abundance, migration, behavior and habitat relationships of endangered whales in the Alaskan Chukchi and western Beaufort Seas (hereafter, study area); 1990 was the second of a three year (1989-91) study. The Bering Sea stock of bowhead whales (Balaena mysticetus) was the principal species studied, with incidental sightings of all other marine mammals routinely recorded. The 1990 season was compromised by circumstances that restricted the availability of the survey aircraft (Grumman Goose, model G21G) to the period 26 October - 7 November; opportunistic surveys were flown in the study area from 3-25 October. In 1990, there were 14 sightings of 19 bowheads from 9-29 October; 5 whales, including 2 calves, were seen north of the study area. One gray whale, 110 belukhas and 53 polar bears were also seen. Over nine survey seasons (1982-90), there were 240 sightings of 520 bowhead whales and 148 sightings of 398 gray whales.

  1. Modelling guided waves in the Alaskan-Aleutian subduction zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coulson, Sophie; Garth, Thomas; Reitbrock, Andreas

    2016-04-01

    Subduction zone guided wave arrivals from intermediate depth earthquakes (70-300 km depth) have a huge potential to tell us about the velocity structure of the subducting oceanic crust as it dehydrates at these depths. We see guided waves as the oceanic crust has a slower seismic velocity than the surrounding material, and so high frequency energy is retained and delayed in the crustal material. Lower frequency energy is not retained in this crustal waveguide and so travels at faster velocities of the surrounding material. This gives a unique observation at the surface with low frequency energy arriving before the higher frequencies. We constrain this guided wave dispersion by comparing the waveforms recorded in real subduction zones with simulated waveforms, produced using finite difference full waveform modelling techniques. This method has been used to show that hydrated minerals in the oceanic crust persist to much greater depths than accepted thermal petrological subduction zone models would suggest in Northern Japan (Garth & Rietbrock, 2014a), and South America (Garth & Rietbrock, in prep). These observations also suggest that the subducting oceanic mantle may be highly hydrated at intermediate depth by dipping normal faults (Garth & Rietbrock 2014b). We use this guided wave analysis technique to constrain the velocity structure of the down going ~45 Ma Pacific plate beneath Alaska. Dispersion analysis is primarily carried out on guided wave arrivals recorded on the Alaskan regional seismic network. Earthquake locations from global earthquake catalogues (ISC and PDE) and regional earthquake locations from the AEIC (Alaskan Earthquake Information Centre) catalogue are used to constrain the slab geometry and to identify potentially dispersive events. Dispersed arrivals are seen at stations close to the trench, with high frequency (>2 Hz) arrivals delayed by 2 - 4 seconds. This dispersion is analysed to constrain the velocity and width of the proposed waveguide

  2. Response of Tundra Ecosystems to Elevated Atmospheric CO{sub 2}

    SciTech Connect

    Oechel, Walter C.

    1990-09-05

    OAK B188 Response of Tundra Ecosystems to Elevated Atmospheric CO{sub 2}. Atmospheric CO{sub 2} is expected to double by the end of the next century. Global mean increases in surface air temperature of 1.5-4.5 C are anticipated with larger increases towards the poles predicted. Changes in CO{sub 2} levels and temperature could have major impacts on ecosystem functioning, including primary productivity, species composition, plant-animal interactions, and carbon storage. Until recently, there has been little direct information on the impact of changes in CO{sub 2} and temperature on native ecosystems. The study described here was undertaken to evaluate the effects of a 50 and 100% increase in atmospheric CO{sub 2}, and a 100% increase in atmospheric CO{sub 2} coupled with a 4 C summer air temperature rise on the structure and function of an arctic tussock tundra ecosystem. The arctic contains large stores of carbon as soil organic matter, much frozen in permafrost and currently not reactive or available for oxidation and release into the atmosphere. About 10-27% of the world's terrestrial carbon occurs in arctic and boreal regions, and carbon is accumulating in these regions at the rate of 0.19 GT y{sup -1}. Mean temperature increases of 11 C and summer temperature increases of 4 C have been suggested. Mean July temperatures on the arctic coastal plain and arctic foothills regions are 4-12 C, and mean annual temperatures are -7 to -13 C (Haugen, 1982). The projected temperature increases represent a substantial elevation above current temperatures which will have major impacts on physical processes such as permafrost development and development of the active layer, and on biological and ecosystem processes such as primary productivity, carbon storage, and species composition. Extreme nutrient and temperature limitation of this ecosystem raised questions of the responsiveness of arctic systems to elevated CO{sub 2}. Complex ecosystem interactions with the effects of

  3. Methane dynamics in warming tundra of Northeast European Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marushchak, M. E.; Friborg, T.; Biasi, C.; Herbst, M.; Johansson, T.; Kiepe, I.; Liimatainen, M.; Lind, S. E.; Martikainen, P. J.; Virtanen, T.; Soegaard, H.; Shurpali, N. J.

    2015-08-01

    Methane (CH4) fluxes were investigated in a subarctic Russian tundra site in a multi-approach study combining plot scale data, ecosystem scale eddy covariance (EC) measurements and fine resolution land cover classification scheme for regional upscaling. The flux data as measured by the two independent techniques resulted in a seasonal (May-October 2008) cumulative CH4 emission of 2.4 (EC) and 3.7 g CH4 m-2 (manual chambers) for the source area representative of the footprint of the EC instruments. Upon upscaling for the entire study region of 98.6 km2, the chamber measured flux data yielded a regional flux estimate of 6.7 g CH4 m-2 yr-1. Our upscaling efforts accounted for the large spatial variability in the distribution of the various land cover types (LCTs) predominant at our study site. In particular, wetlands with emissions ranging from 34 to 53 g CH4 m-2 yr-1 were the most dominant CH4 emitting surfaces. Emissions from thermokarst lakes were an order of magnitude lower, while the rest of the landscape (mineral tundra) was a weak sink for atmospheric methane. Vascular plant cover was a key factor in explaining the spatial variability of CH4 emissions among wetland types, as indicated by the positive correlation of emissions with the leaf area index (LAI). As elucidated through a stable isotope analysis, the plant transport was the dominant CH4 release pathway that discriminates against heavier δ13C-CH4. The methane released from wetlands was lighter than that in the surface porewater and δ13C in the emitted CH4 correlated with the vascular plant cover (LAI) implying that the plant-mediated CH4 release dominates. A mean value of δ13C obtained here for the emitted CH4, -68.2 ± 2.0 ‰, is within the range of values from other wetlands, thus reinforcing the use of inverse modeling tools to better constrain the CH4 budget. Based on the IPCC A1B emission scenario, a temperature increase of 7 °C has been predicted for the tundra region of European Russia by the

  4. Satellite based permafrost modeling in low land tundra landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Langer, M.; Westermann, S.; Heikenfeld, M.; Boike, J.

    2012-12-01

    For most of the cryosphere components such as glaciers, ice sheets, sea ice, and snow satellite monitoring and change detection is well established since several decades. For permafrost, however, which represents the largest component of the Arctic cryosphere operational satellite monitoring schemes do not exist so far. Most of the processes which control the Arctic terrestrial ecosystems are related to the thermal state of permafrost and the freeze/thaw dynamics of the active layer. Hence, satellite based permafrost monitoring would be highly beneficial for the impact assessment of climate change in the Arctic. Permafrost monitoring could also be highly beneficial for the risk assessment of infrastructure in the Arctic such as roads, pipelines, and buildings which are directly affected by the thermal stability of permafrost. Increasing thaw depths and prolonged thaw periods can damage pipelines and interrupt the access to vast regions due to road damages. Sustained warming of permafrost can result in thermal erosion and landslides which threaten buildings and other infrastructural facilities. In this study we present a possible permafrost monitoring scheme based on a numerical heat flow model which is forced by multiple satellite products and initialized by weather reanalysis data. The used forcing and initialization dataset includes the land surface temperature (LST), the snow cover fraction (SCF), and the snow water equivalent (SWE). Previous studies demonstrated that MODIS LST products can deliver reasonable surface temperature measurements in tundra landscapes (Langer et al. 2010, Westermann et al. 2011). This study is based on the ten year record of the daily MOD11A1v5 and MYD11A1v5 land surface temperature products with a spatial resolution of 1km. The snow cover evolution is obtained from the daily GlobSnow SWE product with a spatial resolution of about 25km. In addition, the MODIS snow cover products MOD10A1v5 and MYD10v5 with a resolution of 1km are used

  5. Topographic Variation and Methane Production in Siberian Arctic Tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eason, J.; Kuhn, M. A.; Dunn, S.; Spawn, S.; Schade, J. D.

    2014-12-01

    Understanding the fate of soil carbon when permafrost soils begin to thaw is critical for predicting the impact of permafrost thaw on global climate change. Microbial metabolism of soil carbon can produce carbon dioxide or methane, depending on soil conditions, and which pathway dominates has great significance for the strength of climate feedbacks since methane is a much more powerful greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. In Arctic ecosystems, methane production from upland environments is not well understood and generally assumed to be low because conditions there are generally not favorable for methanogenesis. Small changes in topography, however, can lead to great heterogeneity in soil conditions at small scales that may lead to higher methane flux than generally recognized. In this study, we investigated patterns in methane, carbon dioxide, and oxygen concentrations in in surface waters of 15 small ponds in the Kolyma River watershed in Northeast Siberia. The ponds were distributed across a topographic gradient from upland tundra high in the landscape to low-lying ponds in the floodplain of the Kolyma River. In addition, we used chambers to measured methane fluxes from a variety of topographic depressions that ranged from pools to moss-dominated saturated soils lacking surface water, to dry soils dominated by sedges. Dissolved carbon dioxide concentrations in ponds showed no trend down the topographic gradient while methane concentrations decreased downslope. The decrease in methane production may be the result of a switch from green moss to brown moss, which may act as a host for methanotrophic bacteria. Ponds with green moss had significantly higher concentrations of methane than the ponds with brown moss. In addition, we found significantly higher methane fluxes from pools and saturated soils then from drier soils, which showed very low fluxes. These results suggest that upland tundra may be a significant source of methane, and that methane fluxes are driven

  6. Can lemmings control the expansion of woody plants on tundra?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oksanen, Lauri; Oksanen, Tarja; Olofsson, Johan; Virtanen, Risto; Hoset, Katrine; Tuomi, Maria; Kyrö, Kukka

    2013-04-01

    The ongoing expansion of woody vegetation in the arctic, due to global warming, creates a positive feed back loop. Increasing abundance of woody plants reduces surface albedo both directly and via speeding up snow melt. Thus a successively greater fraction of incoming solar radiation is absorbed and converted to heat. Browsing mammals - both big and small - can prevent this by consuming woody plants. However, the grazer/browser community of many tundra areas is dominated by brown/Norwegian lemmings (Lemmus spp.) which eat graminoids and mosses and cannot use woody plants as forage. It would seem a priori likely that in such areas, mammalian herbivores speed up the expansion of woody plants by improving the chances of their seedlings to get established. We studied the impact of lemmings on woody plants by constructing lemming proof exclosures within piece high-altitude tundra at Joatkanjávri, northernmost Norway. The exclosures were constructed in 1998, during a period of low lemming densities, in snow-beds, where Norwegian lemmings (L. lemmus) were the only ecologically significant herbivorous mammals. (Reindeer migrate through the area in May, when snow-beds are inaccessible for them; during the fall migration, the area represents a dead end and is therefore avoided.) We chose pairs of maximally similar vegetation patches of 0.5 by 0.5 m and randomly assigned one of each pair to become an exclosure while the other plot was left open. The initial state of the vegetation was documented by the point frequency method. In 2008, after the 2007 lemming outbreak, the same documentation was repeated; thereafter the plots were harvested, the vegetation was sorted to species, oven dried and weighed. Exclusion of lemmings resulted to pronounced increase in community level plant biomass. Evergreen woody plants were especially favored by the exclusion of lemming: their above-ground biomass in exclosures was 14 times as great as their biomass on open reference plots. The

  7. Bioaccumulation of petroleum hydrocarbons in arctic amphipods in the oil development area of the Alaskan Beaufort Sea.

    PubMed

    Neff, Jerry M; Durell, Gregory S

    2012-04-01

    An objective of a multiyear monitoring program, sponsored by the US Department of the Interior, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management was to examine temporal and spatial changes in chemical and biological characteristics of the Arctic marine environment resulting from offshore oil exploration and development activities in the development area of the Alaskan Beaufort Sea. To determine if petroleum hydrocarbons from offshore oil operations are entering the Beaufort Sea food web, we measured concentrations of hydrocarbons in tissues of amphipods, Anonyx nugax, sediments, Northstar crude oil, and coastal peat, collected between 1999 and 2006 throughout the development area. Mean concentrations of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), saturated hydrocarbons (SHC), and sterane and triterpane petroleum biomarkers (StTr) were not significantly different in amphipods near the Northstar oil production facility, before and after it came on line in 2001, and in amphipods from elsewhere in the study area. Forensic analysis of the profiles (relative composition and concentrations) of the 3 hydrocarbon classes revealed that hydrocarbon compositions were different in amphipods, surface sediments where the amphipods were collected, Northstar crude oil, and peat from the deltas of 4 North Slope rivers. Amphipods and sediments contained a mixture of petrogenic, pyrogenic, and biogenic PAH. The SHC in amphipods were dominated by pristane derived from zooplankton, indicating that the SHC were primarily from the amphipod diet of zooplankton detritus. The petroleum biomarker StTr profiles did not resemble those in Northstar crude oil. The forensic analysis revealed that hydrocarbons in amphipod tissues were not from oil production at Northstar. Hydrocarbons in amphipod tissues were primarily from their diet and from river runoff and coastal erosion of natural diagenic and fossil terrestrial materials, including seep oils, kerogens, and peat. Offshore oil and gas exploration and development

  8. Water track distribution and effects on carbon dioxide flux in an eastern Siberian upland tundra landscape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Curasi, Salvatore R.; Loranty, Michael M.; Natali, Susan M.

    2016-04-01

    Shrub expansion in tundra ecosystems may act as a positive feedback to climate warming, the strength of which depends on its spatial extent. Recent studies have shown that shrub expansion is more likely to occur in areas with high soil moisture and nutrient availability, conditions typically found in sub-surface water channels known as water tracks. Water tracks are 5–15 m wide channels of subsurface water drainage in permafrost landscapes and are characterized by deeper seasonal thaw depth, warmer soil temperatures, and higher soil moisture and nutrient content relative to adjacent tundra. Consequently, enhanced vegetation productivity, and dominance by tall deciduous shrubs, are typical in water tracks. Quantifying the distribution of water tracks may inform investigations of the extent of shrub expansion and associated impacts on tundra ecosystem carbon cycling. Here, we quantify the distribution of water tracks and their contribution to growing season CO2 dynamics for a Siberian tundra landscape using satellite observations, meteorological data, and field measurements. We find that water tracks occupy 7.4% of the 448 km2 study area, and account for a slightly larger proportion of growing season carbon uptake relative to surrounding tundra. For areas inside water tracks dominated by shrubs, field observations revealed higher shrub biomass and higher ecosystem respiration and gross primary productivity relative to adjacent upland tundra. Conversely, a comparison of graminoid-dominated areas in water tracks and inter-track tundra revealed that water track locations dominated by graminoids had lower shrub biomass yet increased net uptake of CO2. Our results show water tracks are an important component of this landscape. Their distribution will influence ecosystem structural and functional responses to climate, and is therefore of importance for modeling.

  9. Water track distribution and effects on carbon dioxide flux in an eastern Siberian upland tundra landscape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Curasi, Salvatore R.; Loranty, Michael M.; Natali, Susan M.

    2016-04-01

    Shrub expansion in tundra ecosystems may act as a positive feedback to climate warming, the strength of which depends on its spatial extent. Recent studies have shown that shrub expansion is more likely to occur in areas with high soil moisture and nutrient availability, conditions typically found in sub-surface water channels known as water tracks. Water tracks are 5-15 m wide channels of subsurface water drainage in permafrost landscapes and are characterized by deeper seasonal thaw depth, warmer soil temperatures, and higher soil moisture and nutrient content relative to adjacent tundra. Consequently, enhanced vegetation productivity, and dominance by tall deciduous shrubs, are typical in water tracks. Quantifying the distribution of water tracks may inform investigations of the extent of shrub expansion and associated impacts on tundra ecosystem carbon cycling. Here, we quantify the distribution of water tracks and their contribution to growing season CO2 dynamics for a Siberian tundra landscape using satellite observations, meteorological data, and field measurements. We find that water tracks occupy 7.4% of the 448 km2 study area, and account for a slightly larger proportion of growing season carbon uptake relative to surrounding tundra. For areas inside water tracks dominated by shrubs, field observations revealed higher shrub biomass and higher ecosystem respiration and gross primary productivity relative to adjacent upland tundra. Conversely, a comparison of graminoid-dominated areas in water tracks and inter-track tundra revealed that water track locations dominated by graminoids had lower shrub biomass yet increased net uptake of CO2. Our results show water tracks are an important component of this landscape. Their distribution will influence ecosystem structural and functional responses to climate, and is therefore of importance for modeling.

  10. Regional biomass and leaf-area estimates derived from satellite imagery as inputs to spatial trace-gas flux models for arctic tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Shippert, M.M.; Walker, D.A.; Auerbach, N.A.; Lewis, B.E. )

    1994-06-01

    Reflectance spectra, leaf area index (LAI), and live biomass measurements were collected for 60 plots near Toolik Lake and Imnavait Creek, Alaska during July and August, 1993. Normalized difference vegetation indices (NDVI) were calculated from the reflectance spectra. NDVI was found to be highly correlated to both LAI and biomass. These relationships have been seen in temperate ecosystems, but have never been tested in Arctic tundra previous to this study. In addition, a clear relationship is seen between NDVI values and pH and moisture. Acidic plots have much higher NDVI values than non-acidic plots, while moist plots have high NDVI values relative to dry and wet plots. The average field NDVI measurements for major physiognomic categories were compared to average NDVI values for the same categories derived from a SPOT multispectral satellite image of the area. These values were also found to be highly correlated. However, field NDVI values were consistently about 40% higher than SPOT NDVI values. Possible explanations for this consistent trend include effects of low sun angle in the Arctic in combination with relatively high view angle of the SPOT sensor. Using the regression equations for the above relationships, biomass and LAI images were calculated from the SPOT image. The resulting images show expected trends in the LAI and biomass across the landscape. The image of biomass will be used as an input to a spatial model of methane emissions for the Alaskan Arctic. Another key input variable to the methane model will be soil moisture. Alternative image processing methods and/or radar images will be used to derive this important variable.

  11. Rapid body size decline in Alaskan Pleistocene horses before extinction.

    PubMed

    Guthrie, R Dale

    2003-11-13

    About 70% of North American large mammal species were lost at the end of the Pleistocene epoch. The causes of this extinction--the role of humans versus that of climate--have been the focus of much controversy. Horses have figured centrally in that debate, because equid species dominated North American late Pleistocene faunas in terms of abundance, geographical distribution, and species variety, yet none survived into the Holocene epoch. The timing of these equid regional extinctions and accompanying evolutionary changes are poorly known. In an attempt to document better the decline and demise of two Alaskan Pleistocene equids, I selected a large number of fossils from the latest Pleistocene for radiocarbon dating. Here I show that horses underwent a rapid decline in body size before extinction, and I propose that the size decline and subsequent regional extinction at 12,500 radiocarbon years before present are best attributed to a coincident climatic/vegetational shift. The present data do not support human overkill and several other proposed extinction causes, and also show that large mammal species responded somewhat individualistically to climate changes at the end of the Pleistocene.

  12. Ice loss and sea level rise contribution from Alaskan glaciers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berthier, E.; Schiefer, E.; Clarke, G. K.; Menounos, B.; Rémy, F.; Cazenave, A. A.

    2009-12-01

    Over the last 50 years, retreating glaciers and ice caps (GIC) contributed 0.5 mm/yr to SLR, and one third is believed to originate from ice masses bordering the Gulf of Alaska. However, these estimates of ice wastage in Alaska are based on methods that directly measure mass changes from a limited number of glaciers and extrapolate the results to estimate ice loss for the many thousands of others. Here, using a new glacier inventory with elevation changes derived from sequential digital elevation models (DEMs), we found that, between 1962 and 2006, Alaskan glaciers lost 41.9 ± 8.6 km**3/yr water equivalent (w.e.) and contributed 0.12 ± 0.02 mm/yr to SLR. Our ice loss is 34% lower than previous estimates. Reasons for our lower values include the higher spatial resolution of the glacier inventory used in our study and the complex pattern of ice elevation changes at the scale of individual glaciers and mountain ranges which was not resolved in earlier work. Our ice elevation changes reveal that glacier dynamics (surges, phase of the tidewater cycle, etc...) have a profound effect on the wastage of Alaska glaciers. 3D satellite view of Columbia glacier, Chugach Mountains, Alaska. (Copyright CNES 2007, Distribution Spot Image, processing E. Berthier CNRS)

  13. Quantifying seismic survey reverberation off the Alaskan North Slope.

    PubMed

    Guerra, Melania; Thode, Aaron M; Blackwell, Susanna B; Michael Macrander, A

    2011-11-01

    Shallow-water airgun survey activities off the North Slope of Alaska generate impulsive sounds that are the focus of much regulatory attention. Reverberation from repetitive airgun shots, however, can also increase background noise levels, which can decrease the detection range of nearby passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) systems. Typical acoustic metrics for impulsive signals provide no quantitative information about reverberation or its relative effect on the ambient acoustic environment. Here, two conservative metrics are defined for quantifying reverberation: a minimum level metric measures reverberation levels that exist between airgun pulse arrivals, while a reverberation metric estimates the relative magnitude of reverberation vs expected ambient levels in the hypothetical absence of airgun activity, using satellite-measured wind data. The metrics are applied to acoustic data measured by autonomous recorders in the Alaskan Beaufort Sea in 2008 and demonstrate how seismic surveys can increase the background noise over natural ambient levels by 30-45 dB within 1 km of the activity, by 10-25 dB within 15 km of the activity, and by a few dB at 128 km range. These results suggest that shallow-water reverberation would reduce the performance of nearby PAM systems when monitoring for marine mammals within a few kilometers of shallow-water seismic surveys.

  14. Soluble trace elements and total mercury in Arctic Alaskan snow

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Snyder-Conn, E.; Garbarino, J.R.; Hoffman, G.L.; Oelkers, A.

    1997-01-01

    Ultraclean field and laboratory procedures were used to examine trace element concentrations in northern Alaskan snow. Sixteen soluble trace elements and total mercury were determined in snow core samples representing the annual snowfall deposited during the 1993-94 season at two sites in the Prudhoe Bay oil field and nine sites in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (Arctic NWR). Results indicate there were two distinct point sources for trace elements in the Prudhoe Bay oil field - a source associated with oil and gas production and a source associated with municipal solid-waste incineration. Soluble trace element concentrations measured in snow from the Arctic NWR resembled concentrations of trace elements measured elsewhere in the Arctic using clean sample-collection and processing techniques and were consistent with deposition resulting from widespread arctic atmospheric contamination. With the exception of elements associated with sea salts, there were no orographic or east-west trends observed in the Arctic NWR data, nor were there any detectable influences from the Prudhoe Bay oil field, probably because of the predominant easterly and northeasterly winds on the North Slope of Alaska. However, regression analysis on latitude suggested significant south-to-north increases in selected trace element concentrations, many of which appear unrelated to the sea salt contribution.

  15. Ecology of invasive Melilotus albus on Alaskan glacial river floodplains

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Conn, Jeff S.; Werdin-Pfisterer, Nancy R.; Beattie, Katherine L.; Densmore, Roseann V.

    2011-01-01

    Melilotus albus (white sweetclover) has invaded Alaskan glacial river floodplains. We measured cover and density of plant species and environmental variables along transects perpendicular to the Nenana, Matanuska, and Stikine Rivers to study interactions between M. albus and other plant species and to characterize the environment where it establishes. Melilotus albus was a pioneer species on recently disturbed sites and did not persist into closed canopy forests. The relationships between M. albus cover and density and other species were site-specific.Melilotus albus was negatively correlated with native species Elaeagnus commutata at the Nenana River, but not at the Matanuska River. Melilotus albus was positively correlated with the exotic species Crepis tectorumand Taraxacum officinale at the Matanuska River and T. officinale on the upper Stikine River. However, the high density of M. albus at a lower Stikine River site was negatively correlated with T. officinale and several native species including Lathyrus japonicus var. maritimus and Salix alaxensis. Glacial river floodplains in Alaska are highly disturbed and are corridors for exotic plant species movement. Melilotus albus at moderate to low densities may facilitate establishment of exotic species, but at high densities can reduce the cover and density of both exotic and native species.

  16. A Formal Messaging Notation for Alaskan Aviation Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rios, Joseph L.

    2015-01-01

    Data exchange is an increasingly important aspect of the National Airspace System. While many data communication channels have become more capable of sending and receiving data at higher throughput rates, there is still a need to use communication channels efficiently with limited throughput. The limitation can be based on technological issues, financial considerations, or both. This paper provides a complete description of several important aviation weather data in Abstract Syntax Notation format. By doing so, data providers can take advantage of Abstract Syntax Notation's ability to encode data in a highly compressed format. When data such as pilot weather reports, surface weather observations, and various weather predictions are compressed in such a manner, it allows for the efficient use of throughput-limited communication channels. This paper provides details on the Abstract Syntax Notation One (ASN.1) implementation for Alaskan aviation data, and demonstrates its use on real-world aviation weather data samples as Alaska has sparse terrestrial data infrastructure and data are often sent via relatively costly satellite channels.

  17. Quantifying seismic survey reverberation off the Alaskan North Slope.

    PubMed

    Guerra, Melania; Thode, Aaron M; Blackwell, Susanna B; Michael Macrander, A

    2011-11-01

    Shallow-water airgun survey activities off the North Slope of Alaska generate impulsive sounds that are the focus of much regulatory attention. Reverberation from repetitive airgun shots, however, can also increase background noise levels, which can decrease the detection range of nearby passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) systems. Typical acoustic metrics for impulsive signals provide no quantitative information about reverberation or its relative effect on the ambient acoustic environment. Here, two conservative metrics are defined for quantifying reverberation: a minimum level metric measures reverberation levels that exist between airgun pulse arrivals, while a reverberation metric estimates the relative magnitude of reverberation vs expected ambient levels in the hypothetical absence of airgun activity, using satellite-measured wind data. The metrics are applied to acoustic data measured by autonomous recorders in the Alaskan Beaufort Sea in 2008 and demonstrate how seismic surveys can increase the background noise over natural ambient levels by 30-45 dB within 1 km of the activity, by 10-25 dB within 15 km of the activity, and by a few dB at 128 km range. These results suggest that shallow-water reverberation would reduce the performance of nearby PAM systems when monitoring for marine mammals within a few kilometers of shallow-water seismic surveys. PMID:22087932

  18. 33 CFR 334.1290 - In Bering Sea, Shemya Island Area, Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ..., Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. 334.1290 Section...; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. (a) The danger zone. An arc of a...) Rockets will normally be launched one each day Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m....

  19. 33 CFR 334.1290 - In Bering Sea, Shemya Island Area, Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ..., Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. 334.1290 Section...; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. (a) The danger zone. An arc of a...) Rockets will normally be launched one each day Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m....

  20. 33 CFR 334.1290 - In Bering Sea, Shemya Island Area, Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ..., Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. 334.1290 Section...; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. (a) The danger zone. An arc of a...) Rockets will normally be launched one each day Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m....

  1. 33 CFR 334.1290 - In Bering Sea, Shemya Island Area, Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ..., Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. 334.1290 Section...; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. (a) The danger zone. An arc of a...) Rockets will normally be launched one each day Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m....

  2. 33 CFR 334.1290 - In Bering Sea, Shemya Island Area, Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ..., Alaska; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. 334.1290 Section...; meteorological rocket launching facility, Alaskan Air Command, U.S. Air Force. (a) The danger zone. An arc of a...) Rockets will normally be launched one each day Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m....

  3. 25 CFR 243.6 - Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not require a permit?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2012-04-01 2011-04-01 true Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not... AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.6 Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not require a... reindeer or reindeer products; and (b) Sale of transfer of live reindeer between Alaska Natives or...

  4. 25 CFR 243.6 - Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not require a permit?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2013-04-01 2013-04-01 false Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not... AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.6 Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not require a... reindeer or reindeer products; and (b) Sale of transfer of live reindeer between Alaska Natives or...

  5. 25 CFR 243.6 - Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not require a permit?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not... AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.6 Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not require a... reindeer or reindeer products; and (b) Sale of transfer of live reindeer between Alaska Natives or...

  6. 25 CFR 243.6 - Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not require a permit?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2011-04-01 2011-04-01 false Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not... AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.6 Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not require a... reindeer or reindeer products; and (b) Sale of transfer of live reindeer between Alaska Natives or...

  7. 25 CFR 243.6 - Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not require a permit?

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-04-01

    ... 25 Indians 1 2014-04-01 2014-04-01 false Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not... AND WILDLIFE REINDEER IN ALASKA § 243.6 Which sales or transfers of Alaskan reindeer do not require a... reindeer or reindeer products; and (b) Sale of transfer of live reindeer between Alaska Natives or...

  8. Modelling tundra vegetation response to recent arctic warming.

    PubMed

    Miller, Paul A; Smith, Benjamin

    2012-01-01

    The Arctic land area has warmed by > 1 °C in the last 30 years and there is evidence that this has led to increased productivity and stature of tundra vegetation and reduced albedo, effecting a positive (amplifying) feedback to climate warming. We applied an individual-based dynamic vegetation model over the Arctic forced by observed climate and atmospheric CO(2) for 1980-2006. Averaged over the study area, the model simulated increases in primary production and leaf area index, and an increasing representation of shrubs and trees in vegetation. The main underlying mechanism was a warming-driven increase in growing season length, enhancing the production of shrubs and trees to the detriment of shaded ground-level vegetation. The simulated vegetation changes were estimated to correspond to a 1.75 % decline in snow-season albedo. Implications for modelling future climate impacts on Arctic ecosystems and for the incorporation of biogeophysical feedback mechanisms in Arctic system models are discussed. PMID:22864701

  9. Constraints on Microseism Generation and Sea Ice Mechanical Strength from Observations of Alaskan Microseism Variability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsai, V. C.; McNamara, D. E.

    2010-12-01

    Ocean microseism is the primary source of seismic noise in the period band from 2 to 25 seconds period, and is also known to be strongly excited by waves from large storms. However, some ambiguity remains regarding the exact mechanism through which this energy is coupled to the solid Earth and, in particular, where the energy is best coupled. To partly address this concern, we examine secondary microseism variability from a set of coastal Alaskan seismic stations. In this region, sea ice forms annually, preventing large waves from forming and thereby preventing local secondary microseism generation. In a previous study, McNamara and Koper (SSA, 2010) showed that there is a clear difference in secondary seismic noise levels in the 1 to 5 second period band due to this seasonal sea ice variability, which is distinct from the more traditional seasonality in microseism levels. Here, we further quantify these changes by comparing the variability in seismic noise levels with sea ice variability as determined through NOAA satellite observations. As expected, we find that microseism levels at a particular station drop when sea ice surrounds the station. Moreover, shorter-period microseism (1-3 s) is affected primarily by local sea ice concentration, whereas longer-period microseism (>3 s) is also affected by more distant sea ice. This period dependence is quantified and is consistent with models of microseism generation in which most of the observed microseism is generated near-shore. These observations therefore potentially clarify part of the debate regarding source location of secondary microseism. In addition to the first-order attenuation effect that coincides with observed satellite measurements of sea ice, there is also a more subtle variation in microseism levels that we interpret to be due to changes in sea ice mechanical strength that are not readily captured by satellite measurements. While this second-order effect is currently poorly characterized, there is

  10. [The processes of methane formation and oxidation in the soils of the Russian arctic tundra].

    PubMed

    Berestovskaia, Iu Iu; Rusanov, I I; Vasil'eva, L V; Pimenov, N V

    2005-01-01

    Methane emission from the following types of tundra soils was studied: coarse humic gleyey loamy cryo soil, peaty gley soil, and peaty gleyey midloamy cryo soil of the arctic tundra. All the soils studied were found to be potential sources of atmospheric methane. The highest values of methane emission were recorded in August at a soil temperature of 8-10 degrees C. Flooded parcels were the sources of atmospheric methane throughout the observation period. The rates of methane production and oxidation in tundra soils of various types at 5 and 15 degrees C were studied by the radioisotope method. Methane oxidation was found to occur in bog water, in the green part of peat moss, and in all the soil horizons studied. Methane formation was recorded in the horizons of peat, in clay with plant roots, and in peaty moss dust of the bogey parcels. At both temperatures, the methane oxidation rate exceeded the rate of methane formation in all the horizons of the mossy-lichen tundra and of the bumpy sinkhole complex. Methanogenesis prevailed only in a sedge-peat moss bog at 15 degrees C. Enrichment bacterial cultures oxidizing methane at 5 and 15 degrees C were obtained. Different types of methanotrophic bacteria were shown to be responsible for methane oxidation under these conditions. A representative of type I methylotrophs oxidized methane at 5 degrees C, and Methylocella tundrae, a psychroactive representative of an acidophilic methanotrophic genus Methylocella, at 15 degrees C. PMID:15938404

  11. How will the tundra-taiga interface respond to climate change?

    PubMed

    Skre, Oddvar; Baxter, Robert; Crawford, Robert M M; Callaghan, Terry V; Fedorkov, Alexey

    2002-08-01

    The intuitive and logical answer to the question of how the tundra-taiga interface will react to global warming is that it should move north and this is mirrored by many models of potential treeline migration. Northward movement may be the eventual outcome if climatic warming persists over centuries or millennia. However, closer examination of the tundra-taiga interface across its circumpolar extent reveals a more complex situation. The regional climatic history of the tundra-taiga interface is highly varied, and consequently it is to be expected that the forest tundra boundary zone will respond differently to climate change depending on local variations in climate, evolutionary history, soil development, and hydrology. Investigations reveal considerable stability at present in the position of the treeline and while there may be a long-term advance northwards there are oceanic regions where climatic warming may result in a retreat southwards due to increased bog development. Reinforcing this trend is an increasing human impact, particularly in the forest tundra of Russia, which forces the limit of the forested areas southwards. Local variations will therefore require continued observation and research, as they will be of considerable importance economically as well as for ecology and conservation.

  12. Methane emissions from tundra environments in the Yukon-Kuskokwin Delta, Alaska

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bartlett, Karen B.; Crill, Patrick M.; Sass, Ronald L.; Harriss, Robert C.; Dise, Nancy B.

    1992-01-01

    This paper reports CH4 flux to the atmosphere from a variety of tundra environments near Bethel, Alaska during the summer months of 1988. Emissions from wet meadow tundra averaged 144 +/- 31 mg/sq m/d and ranged from 15.6 to 426 mg/sq m/d varying with soil moisture and temperature. Flux from the drier upland tundra was about two orders of magnitude lower and averaged 2.3 +/- 1.1 mg/sq m/d. Tundra lakes emit CH4 from the open water surface as well as from fringing aquatic vegetation; the presence of vegetation significantly enhanced flux over open water rates. Calculated diffusive fluxes from open water varied with lake size, the large lakes emitting 3.8 mg/sq m/d and small lakes emitting an average of 77 mg/sq m/d. An updated estimate of global emissions from tundra indicates an annual fluxes of approximately 11 +/- 3 Tg CH4.

  13. Modeling carbon-nutrient interactions during the early recovery of tundra after fire.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Yueyang; Rastetter, Edward B; Rocha, Adrian V; Pearce, Andrea R; Kwiatkowski, Bonnie L; Shaver, Gaius R

    2015-09-01

    Fire frequency has dramatically increased in the tundra of northern Alaska, USA, which has major implications for the carbon budget of the region and the functioning of these ecosystems, which support important wildlife species. We investigated the postfire succession of plant and soil carbon (C), nitrogen (N), and phosphorus (P) fluxes and stocks along a burn severity gradient in the 2007 Anaktuvuk River fire scar in northern Alaska. Modeling results indicated that the early regrowth of postfire tundra vegetation was limited primarily by its canopy photosynthetic potential, rather than nutrient availability, because of the initially low leaf area and relatively high inorganic N and P concentrations in soil. Our simulations indicated that the postfire recovery of tundra vegetation was sustained predominantly by the uptake of residual inorganic N (i.e., in the remaining ash), and the redistribution of N and P from soil organic matter to vegetation. Although residual nutrients in ash were higher in the severe burn than the moderate burn, the moderate burn recovered faster because of the higher remaining biomass and consequent photosynthetic potential. Residual nutrients in ash allowed both burn sites to recover and exceed the unburned site in both aboveground biomass and production five years after the fire. The investigation of interactions among postfire C, N, and P cycles has contributed to a mechanistic understanding of the response of tundra ecosystems to fire disturbance. Our study provided insight on how the trajectory of recovery of tundra from wildfire is regulated during early succession.

  14. Methane emissions from tundra environments in the Yukon-Kuskokwin Delta, Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Bartlett, K.B.; Crill, P.M.; Sass, R.L.; Harriss, R.C.; Dise, N.B. New Hampshire Univ., Durham Rice Univ., Houston, TX Minnesota Univ., Minneapolis )

    1992-10-01

    This paper reports CH[sub 4] flux to the atmosphere from a variety of tundra environments near Bethel, Alaska during the summer months of 1988. Emissions from wet meadow tundra averaged 144 +/- 31 mg/sq m/d and ranged from 15.6 to 426 mg/sq m/d varying with soil moisture and temperature. Flux from the drier upland tundra was about two orders of magnitude lower and averaged 2.3 +/- 1.1 mg/sq m/d. Tundra lakes emit CH4 from the open water surface as well as from fringing aquatic vegetation; the presence of vegetation significantly enhanced flux over open water rates. Calculated diffusive fluxes from open water varied with lake size, the large lakes emitting 3.8 mg/sq m/d and small lakes emitting an average of 77 mg/sq m/d. An updated estimate of global emissions from tundra indicates an annual fluxes of approximately 11 +/- 3 Tg CH[sub 4]. 41 refs.

  15. Below-ground carbon transfer among Betula nana may increase with warming in Arctic tundra.

    PubMed

    Deslippe, Julie R; Simard, Suzanne W

    2011-11-01

    • Shrubs are expanding in Arctic tundra, but the role of mycorrhizal fungi in this process is unknown. We tested the hypothesis that mycorrhizal networks are involved in interplant carbon (C) transfer within a tundra plant community. • Here, we installed below-ground treatments to control for C transfer pathways and conducted a (13)CO(2)-pulse-chase labelling experiment to examine C transfer among and within plant species. • We showed that mycorrhizal networks exist in tundra, and facilitate below-ground transfer of C among Betula nana individuals, but not between or within the other tundra species examined. Total C transfer among conspecific B. nana pairs was 10.7 ± 2.4% of photosynthesis, with the majority of C transferred through rhizomes or root grafts (5.2 ± 5.3%) and mycorrhizal network pathways (4.1 ± 3.3%) and very little through soil pathways (1.4 ± 0.35%). • Below-ground C transfer was of sufficient magnitude to potentially alter plant interactions in Arctic tundra, increasing the competitive ability and mono-dominance of B. nana. C transfer was significantly positively related to ambient temperatures, suggesting that it may act as a positive feedback to ecosystem change as climate warms.

  16. Ventilation of North Pacific Intermediate Waters - The role of the Alaskan Gyre

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Van Scoy, Kim A.; Olson, Donald B.; Fine, Rana A.

    1991-01-01

    Hydrographic data, tritium data, and potential vorticity calculations suggest that although North Pacific Intermediate Water is formed in the northwest, the Alaskan Gyre might be an additional ventilation site. The proposed ventilation is quantified by a vertical column tritium inventory, which indicates an excess of 0.08 kg of tritium in the Alaskan Gyre. An evaluation of the energy stored in the water column and of wind and buoyancy forcing shows that during winter conditions enough energy can be pumped into the system to force 26.80 sigma(theta) to outcrop in the Alaskan Gyre. Model results suggest that relatively limited outcrops in time and space (tens of days and several hundred kilometers in diameter) can account for the excess tritium.

  17. Alaskan malamute chondrodysplasia IV. Concentrations of zinc, copper and iron in various tissues.

    PubMed

    Brown, R G; Hoag, G N; Smart, M E; Boechner, G; Subden, R E

    1977-09-01

    Trace mineral concentrations in various tissues of the chondrodysplastic (dwarf) Alaskan Malamute are remarkably different as compared to normal. The zinc level in heart tissue was depressed in dwarf animals (26 weeks). Copper concentration in the liver is elevated two to four fold in 26 week old dwarf animals and iron levels are significantly elevated in kidney, liver and pancreas of these animals. These observations suggest that the dwarf Alaskan Malamutes suffer from a genetic defect in trace mineral metabolism. If this is the case, then many of the skeletal lesions reported for these animals may be attributed to disorders in either zinc or copper metabolism.

  18. Variation in bird's originating nitrogen availability limits High Arctic tundra development over last 2000 year (Hornsund, Svalbard)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Skrzypek, Grzegorz; Wojtuń, Bronisław; Hua, Quan; Richter, Dorota; Jakubas, Dariusz; Wojczulanis-Jakubas, Katarzyna; Samecka-Cymerman, Aleksandra

    2016-04-01

    Arctic and subarctic regions play important roles in the global carbon balance. However, nitrogen (N) deficiency is a major constraint for organic carbon sequestration in the High Arctic. Hence, the identification of the relative contributions from different N-sources is critical for understanding the constraints that limit tundra growth. The stable nitrogen composition of the three main N-sources and numerous plants were analyzed in ten tundra types (including those influenced by seabirds) in the Fuglebekken catchment (Hornsund, Svalbard, 77°N 15°E). The percentage of the total tundra N-pool provided by seabirds' feces (from planktivorous colonially breeding little auks Alle alle), ranged from 0-21% in Patterned-ground tundra to 100% in Ornithocoprophilous tundra. The total N-pool utilized by tundra plants in the studied catchment originated from birds (36%), atmospheric deposition (38%), and N2-fixation (26%). The results clearly show that N-pool in the tundra is significantly supplemented by nesting seabirds. Thus, if they experienced climate change induced substantial negative environmental pressure, it would adversely influence the tundra N-budget (Skrzypek et al. 2015). The growth rates and the sediment thickness (<15cm) in different tundra types varied considerably but the tundra age was similar in the whole area, <450 cal BP. The only exception was Ornithocoprophilous bird-N rich tundra with very diverse ages ranging from 235 to 2300 cal BP and thickness up to 110 cm. The growth rates for this tundra (62 cm core, 18 AMS 14C dates) were high (1.5-3.0 mm/yr) between 1568 and 1804 AD and then substantially declined for the period between 1804 and 1929 AD (0.2 mm/yr). These findings deliver an additional argument, that the organic matter accumulation is driven not only directly by climatic conditions but also by birds' contribution to the tundra N-pool. Skrzypek G, Wojtuń B, Richter D, Jakubas D, Wojczulanis-Jakubas K, Samecka-Cymerman A, 2015

  19. Arctic lakes and streams as gas conduits to the atmosphere: Implications for tundra carbon budgets

    SciTech Connect

    Kling, G.W. ); Kipphut, G.W. ); Miller, M.C. )

    1991-01-01

    Arctic tundra has large amounts of stored carbon and is thought to be a sink for atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) (0.1 to 0.3 petagram of carbon per year) (1 petagram = 10{sup 15} grams). But this estimate of carbon balance is only for terrestrial ecosystems. Measurements of the partial pressure of CO{sub 2} in 29 aquatic ecosystems across arctic Alaska showed that in most cases (27 of 29) CO{sub 2} was released to the atmosphere. This CO{sub 2} probably originates in terrestrial environments; erosion of particulate carbon plus ground-water transport of dissolved carbon from tundra contribute to the CO{sub 2} flux from surface waters to the atmosphere. If this mechanism is typical of that of other tundra areas, then current estimates of the arctic terrestrial sink for atmospheric CO{sub 2} may be 20 percent too high. 1 table, 2 figs., 21 refs.

  20. Controls over nutrient flow through plants and microbes in Arctic tundra. Final technical report

    SciTech Connect

    Chapin, F.S. III

    1995-01-01

    We successfully developed a series of models to explore the importance of species differences in phenologies of growth and nitrogen uptake to competitive interactions in upland tussock tundra. We developed growth models for 4 major tussock tundra species, based on observed growth rates and phenologies. We found that differences in phenology and nutrient use strategy could permit coexistence of some, but not all of the tundra plants modeled. The plant that was the best competitor, because of its rapid growth rate and superior ability to retranslocate nitrogen, may be naturally limited in its competitive ability by its tussock growth form. The mechanisms behind this limitation, and the contributions of patterns of mortality to observed production, will be explored in future modeling and experimental studies. In addition, our models point out that our understanding of the dynamics of nitrogen supply is still inadequate.

  1. Contaminants in arctic snow collected over northwest Alaskan sea ice

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Garbarino, J.R.; Snyder-Conn, E.; Leiker, T.J.; Hoffman, G.L.

    2002-01-01

    Snow cores were collected over sea ice from four northwest Alaskan Arctic estuaries that represented the annual snowfall from the 1995-1996 season. Dissolved trace metals, major cations and anions, total mercury, and organochlorine compounds were determined and compared to concentrations in previous arctic studies. Traces (<4 nanograms per liter, ng L-1) of cis- and trans-chlordane, dimethyl 2,3,5,6-tetrachloroterephthalate, dieldrin, endosulfan II, and PCBs were detected in some samples, with endosulfan I consistently present. High chlorpyrifos concentrations (70-80 ng L-1) also were estimated at three sites. The snow was highly enriched in sulfates (69- 394 mg L-1), with high proportions of nonsea salt sulfates at three of five sites (9 of 15 samples), thus indicating possible contamination through long-distance transport and deposition of sulfate-rich atmospheric aerosols. Mercury, cadmium, chromium, molybdenum, and uranium were typically higher in the marine snow (n = 15) in relation to snow from arctic terrestrial studies, whereas cations associated with terrigenous sources, such as aluminum, frequently were lower over the sea ice. One Kasegaluk Lagoon site (Chukchi Sea) had especially high concentrations of total mercury (mean = 214 ng L-1, standard deviation = 5 ng L-1), but no methyl mercury was detected above the method detection limit (0.036 ng L-1) at any of the sites. Elevated concentrations of sulfate, mercury, and certain heavy metals might indicate mechanisms of contaminant loss from the arctic atmosphere over marine water not previously reported over land areas. Scavenging by snow, fog, or riming processes and the high content of deposited halides might facilitate the loss of such contaminants from the atmosphere. Both the mercury and chlorpyrifos concentrations merit further investigation in view of their toxicity to aquatic organisms at low concentrations.

  2. Quantifying and comparing size selectivity among Alaskan sockeye salmon fisheries.

    PubMed

    Kendall, Neala W; Quinn, Thomas P

    2012-04-01

    Quantifying long-term size-selective harvest patterns is necessary for understanding the potential evolutionary effects on exploited species. The comparison of fishery selection patterns on the same species subject to different gear types, in different areas, and over multi-decadal periods can reveal the factors influencing selection. In this study we quantified and compared size-selective harvest by nine Alaskan sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) fisheries to understand overall patterns. We calculated length-specific linear selection differentials (the difference in average length of fish before vs. after fishing), which are produced by different combinations of exploitation rates and length-selectivity values, and nonlinear standardized differentials, describing disruptive selection, across all years for each fishery. Selection differentials varied among years, but larger fish were caught in 73% of years for males and 84% of years for females, leaving smaller fish to spawn. Disruptive selection was observed on female and male fish in 84% and 92% of years, respectively. Linear selection was stronger on females than males in 77% of years examined, and disruptive selection was stronger on males in 71% of years. Selection pressure was influenced by a combination of factors under and beyond management control; analyses using mixed-effects models indicated that fisheries were less size selective in years when fish were larger than average and had lower exploitation rates. The observed harvest of larger than average sockeye salmon is consistent with the hypothesis that size-selective fishing contributes to decreasing age and length at maturation trends over time, but temporal variability in selection and strong disruptive selection suggests that the overall directional pressure is weaker than is often assumed in evolutionary models.

  3. Inorganic and organic contaminants in Alaskan shorebird eggs.

    PubMed

    Saalfeld, David T; Matz, Angela C; McCaffery, Brian J; Johnson, Oscar W; Bruner, Phil; Lanctot, Richard B

    2016-05-01

    Many shorebird populations throughout North America are thought to be declining, with potential causes attributed to habitat loss and fragmentation, reduced prey availability, increased predation, human disturbance, and increased exposure to environmental pollutants. Shorebirds may be particularly vulnerable to contaminant exposure throughout their life cycle, as they forage primarily on invertebrates in wetlands, where many contaminants accumulate disproportionately in the sediments. Therefore, it is important to document and monitor shorebird populations thought to be at risk and assess the role that environmental contaminants may have on population declines. To investigate potential threats and provide baseline data on shorebird contaminant levels in Alaskan shorebirds, contaminant concentrations were evaluated in shorebird eggs from 16 species residing in seven geographic distinct regions of Alaska. Similar to previous studies, low levels of most inorganic and organic contaminants were found, although concentrations of several inorganic and organic contaminants were higher than those of previous studies. For example, elevated strontium levels were observed in several species, especially black oystercatcher (Haematopus bachmani) sampled in Prince William Sound, Alaska. Additionally, contaminant concentrations varied among species, with significantly higher concentrations of inorganic contaminants found in eggs of pectoral sandpiper (Calidris melanotos), semipalmated sandpiper (Calidris pusilla), black oystercatcher, and bar-tailed godwit (Limosa lapponica). Similarly, significantly higher concentrations of some organic contaminants were found in the eggs of American golden plover (Pluvialis dominica), black-bellied plover (Pluvialis squatarola), pacific golden plover (Pluvialis fulva), bar-tailed godwit, and semipalmated sandpiper. Despite these elevated levels, current concentrations of contaminants in shorebird eggs suggest that breeding environments are

  4. Mechanisms influencing changes in lake area in Alaskan boreal forest

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Roach, Jennifer K.; Griffith, Brad; Verbyla, David; Jones, Jeremy B.

    2011-01-01

    During the past ∼50 years, the number and area of lakes have declined in several regions in boreal forests. However, there has been substantial finer-scale heterogeneity; some lakes decreased in area, some showed no trend, and others increased. The objective of this study was to identify the primary mechanisms underlying heterogeneous trends in closed-basin lake area. Eight lake characteristics (δ18O, electrical conductivity, surface : volume index, bank slope, floating mat width, peat depth, thaw depth at shoreline, and thaw depth at the forest boundary) were compared for 15 lake pairs in Alaskan boreal forest where one lake had decreased in area since ∼1950, and the other had not. Mean differences in characteristics between paired lakes were used to identify the most likely of nine mechanistic scenarios that combined three potential mechanisms for decreasing lake area (talik drainage, surface water evaporation, and terrestrialization) with three potential mechanisms for nondecreasing lake area (subpermafrost groundwater recharge through an open talik, stable permafrost, and thermokarst). A priori expectations of the direction of mean differences between decreasing and nondecreasing paired lakes were generated for each scenario. Decreasing lakes had significantly greater electrical conductivity, greater surface : volume indices, shallower bank slopes, wider floating mats, greater peat depths, and shallower thaw depths at the forest boundary. These results indicated that the most likely scenario was terrestrialization as the mechanism for lake area reduction combined with thermokarst as the mechanism for nondecreasing lake area. Terrestrialization and thermokarst may have been enhanced by recent warming which has both accelerated permafrost thawing and lengthened the growing season, thereby increasing plant growth, floating mat encroachment, transpiration rates, and the accumulation of organic matter in lake basins. The transition to peatlands associated

  5. Inorganic and organic contaminants in Alaskan shorebird eggs.

    PubMed

    Saalfeld, David T; Matz, Angela C; McCaffery, Brian J; Johnson, Oscar W; Bruner, Phil; Lanctot, Richard B

    2016-05-01

    Many shorebird populations throughout North America are thought to be declining, with potential causes attributed to habitat loss and fragmentation, reduced prey availability, increased predation, human disturbance, and increased exposure to environmental pollutants. Shorebirds may be particularly vulnerable to contaminant exposure throughout their life cycle, as they forage primarily on invertebrates in wetlands, where many contaminants accumulate disproportionately in the sediments. Therefore, it is important to document and monitor shorebird populations thought to be at risk and assess the role that environmental contaminants may have on population declines. To investigate potential threats and provide baseline data on shorebird contaminant levels in Alaskan shorebirds, contaminant concentrations were evaluated in shorebird eggs from 16 species residing in seven geographic distinct regions of Alaska. Similar to previous studies, low levels of most inorganic and organic contaminants were found, although concentrations of several inorganic and organic contaminants were higher than those of previous studies. For example, elevated strontium levels were observed in several species, especially black oystercatcher (Haematopus bachmani) sampled in Prince William Sound, Alaska. Additionally, contaminant concentrations varied among species, with significantly higher concentrations of inorganic contaminants found in eggs of pectoral sandpiper (Calidris melanotos), semipalmated sandpiper (Calidris pusilla), black oystercatcher, and bar-tailed godwit (Limosa lapponica). Similarly, significantly higher concentrations of some organic contaminants were found in the eggs of American golden plover (Pluvialis dominica), black-bellied plover (Pluvialis squatarola), pacific golden plover (Pluvialis fulva), bar-tailed godwit, and semipalmated sandpiper. Despite these elevated levels, current concentrations of contaminants in shorebird eggs suggest that breeding environments are

  6. Coastal alert

    SciTech Connect

    Holing, D.

    1990-01-01

    This book explains: how offshore drilling affects the environment and the quality of life; how the government auctions off our threatened coast to the oil industry; how offshore oil and gas are developed; how the lease sale process works; how energy alternatives can replace offshore drilling; how citizen action works and how one can become involved; letters and press announcements; important contacts. The author believes that America needs to get off the energy consumption treadmill and onto the track that leads to reliance on renewable resources and energy efficiency. This book is intended to tell citizens how they can help bring about this transition and protect unique coastal resources.

  7. Can Long-Term Precipitation Trends Explain Net Annual Carbon Loss From High Elevation Alpine Tundra?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knowles, J. F.; Blanken, P.; Williams, M. W.

    2013-12-01

    Five continuous years of eddy covariance measurements over predominantly snow-free alpine tundra on Niwot Ridge, Colorado show that ecosystem respiration dominates over gross primary productivity on an annual basis, and that this ecosystem is a significant source of carbon to the atmosphere over long periods of time. Long-term data also show that precipitation has increased since the 1960s, in contrast to modeled forecasts that generally predict decreasing precipitation through the 21st century across the Rocky Mountain region. To constrain the specific relationship between precipitation and the alpine tundra carbon cycle, we tested the degree to which precipitation and soil moisture determined respiration fluxes over the course of three years, and across a range of 17 sites, including xeric, mesic, and hydric alpine tundra soils, within the footprint of ongoing eddy covariance measurements. Overall, we found that respiration from this ecosystem was principally moisture-limited. Cumulatively, the highest respiration rates were measured from hydric soils associated with seasonal ice lenses and perched water tables, however, growing season respiration rates peaked in mesic areas when hydric soils were saturated. Respiration from xeric soils increased with soil moisture, but fluxes from these areas were small in magnitude relative to mesic and hydric soils. Changes in precipitation and resultant soil moisture thus invoked a bidirectional response from alpine tundra soils, as moisture and respiration were positively correlated in some areas, but negatively correlated in others, depending on landscape position and prevailing soil moisture regime. Interannually, however, respiration fluxes were highest in wet years, indicating that moisture stimulated respiration from xeric and mesic soils more than it was suppressed from hydric soils. In sum, increased precipitation over the last half-century may be augmenting respiratory fluxes from alpine tundra, but changes in

  8. Modeling the spatiotemporal variability in subsurface thermal regimes across a low-relief polygonal tundra landscape

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kumar, Jitendra; Collier, Nathan; Bisht, Gautam; Mills, Richard T.; Thornton, Peter E.; Iversen, Colleen M.; Romanovsky, Vladimir

    2016-09-01

    Vast carbon stocks stored in permafrost soils of Arctic tundra are under risk of release to the atmosphere under warming climate scenarios. Ice-wedge polygons in the low-gradient polygonal tundra create a complex mosaic of microtopographic features. This microtopography plays a critical role in regulating the fine-scale variability in thermal and hydrological regimes in the polygonal tundra landscape underlain by continuous permafrost. Modeling of thermal regimes of this sensitive ecosystem is essential for understanding the landscape behavior under the current as well as changing climate. We present here an end-to-end effort for high-resolution numerical modeling of thermal hydrology at real-world field sites, utilizing the best available data to characterize and parameterize the models. We develop approaches to model the thermal hydrology of polygonal tundra and apply them at four study sites near Barrow, Alaska, spanning across low to transitional to high-centered polygons, representing a broad polygonal tundra landscape. A multiphase subsurface thermal hydrology model (PFLOTRAN) was developed and applied to study the thermal regimes at four sites. Using a high-resolution lidar digital elevation model (DEM), microtopographic features of the landscape were characterized and represented in the high-resolution model mesh. The best available soil data from field observations and literature were utilized to represent the complex heterogeneous subsurface in the numerical model. Simulation results demonstrate the ability of the developed modeling approach to capture - without recourse to model calibration - several aspects of the complex thermal regimes across the sites, and provide insights into the critical role of polygonal tundra microtopography in regulating the thermal dynamics of the carbon-rich permafrost soils. Areas of significant disagreement between model results and observations highlight the importance of field-based observations of soil thermal and

  9. Assessing the carbon balance of circumpolar Arctic tundra using remote sensing and process modeling.

    PubMed

    Sitch, Stephen; McGuire, A David; Kimball, John; Gedney, Nicola; Gamon, John; Engstrom, Ryan; Wolf, Annett; Zhuang, Qianlai; Clein, Joy; McDonald, Kyle C

    2007-01-01

    This paper reviews the current status of using remote sensing and process-based modeling approaches to assess the contemporary and future circumpolar carbon balance of Arctic tundra, including the exchange of both carbon dioxide and methane with the atmosphere. Analyses based on remote sensing approaches that use a 20-year data record of satellite data indicate that tundra is greening in the Arctic, suggesting an increase in photosynthetic activity and net primary production. Modeling studies generally simulate a small net carbon sink for the distribution of Arctic tundra, a result that is within the uncertainty range of field-based estimates of net carbon exchange. Applications of process-based approaches for scenarios of future climate change generally indicate net carbon sequestration in Arctic tundra as enhanced vegetation production exceeds simulated increases in decomposition. However, methane emissions are likely to increase dramatically, in response to rising soil temperatures, over the next century. Key uncertainties in the response of Arctic ecosystems to climate change include uncertainties in future fire regimes and uncertainties relating to changes in the soil environment. These include the response of soil decomposition and respiration to warming and deepening of the soil active layer, uncertainties in precipitation and potential soil drying, and distribution of wetlands. While there are numerous uncertainties in the projections of process-based models, they generally indicate that Arctic tundra will be a small sink for carbon over the next century and that methane emissions will increase considerably, which implies that exchange of greenhouse gases between the atmosphere and Arctic tundra ecosystems is likely to contribute to climate warming.

  10. Responses of Tundra Ecosystems to Environmental Change: Observational and Experimental Results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henry, G. H.

    2004-05-01

    Evidence of environmental changes due to human-enhanced climate warming continues to accumulate from polar regions. Responses in tundra and taiga ecosystems to climate changes have been variable because of the wide range in process response rates, from metabolic processes to adjustments in ecosystem carbon balance, and the variability in environmental settings across local to regional scales. For example, strong increases in rates of plant growth and changes in species composition and abundance have been observed in parts of the Low Arctic, but very little change has been measured in high arctic tundra. A dramatic increase in the cover of deciduous shrubs in areas of the western North American Arctic is predicted to result in positive feedbacks to soil temperature, through increased surface roughness and snow depth, and to atmospheric heating by reducing albedo. Increased shrub cover has also been found in long-term experimental warming studies conducted throughout the tundra biome as part of the International Tundra Experiment (ITEX). Warming is also affecting the carbon balance of tundra and taiga, which hold 25% of the soil carbon of global terrestrial ecosystems. However, trajectories of these changes are largely unknown for most northern systems, and differ because of initial conditions of the carbon and nutrient economy. Over the longer-term, the positive increases in plant growth may be constrained by negative feedbacks to nutrient cycling, as increases in C:N ratios of plant litter slow the release of nitrogen to soils. However, nitrogen availability has been shown to increase in response to short-term warming. In this presentation, I will review the responses of tundra ecosystems to climate variability and change, both through observational and experimental studies.

  11. Reduced postfire tree regeneration along a boreal forest-forest-tundra transect in northern Quebec

    SciTech Connect

    Sirois, L.; Payette, S. )

    1991-04-01

    The large 1950s fires that burned > 5,500 km{sup 2} of land across a south-to-north climatic gradient in northern Quebec provide an opportunity to evaluate the role of fire in forest-tundra development on a demographic basis. The tree population density before and {approx} 30 yr after fire was estimated by censusing trees in plots of 400 m{sup 2} located in upland and lowland within four representative ecoregions of northern Quebec. The analysis of tree recruitment before and after fire, in 410 randomly selected sites along a transect crossing the upper boreal forest and forest-tundra zones, indicated that wildfires induced substantial depletion of tree populations. Taken as a whole, fires have significantly reduced the density of black spruce populations in forest-tundra uplands, but not in the lowlands. Sustained reduction of tree population density after several destructive fires appears as one of the main deforestation processed in the subarctic zone. This leads to the patchy distribution of forest stands and scattered tree populations typical of the forest-tundra biome. Comparisons with paleoecological data suggest that the impact of the 1950s fires contributed to the expansion of the forest tundra into the upper boreal forest. The ecological impact of these fires was probably similar to those fires responsible for development of the forest tundra during the Holocene. It is suggested that the fire-climate interaction should be considered in order to predict the ecological impact of warming climate on high-latitude forest ecosystems.

  12. Shrub Abundance Mapping in Arctic Tundra with Misr

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duchesne, R.; Chopping, M. J.; Wang, Z.; Schaaf, C.; Tape, K. D.

    2013-12-01

    Over the last 60 years an increase in shrub abundance has been observed in the Arctic tundra in connection with a rapid surface warming trend. Rapid shrub expansion may have consequences in terms of ecosystem structure and function, albedo, and feedbacks to climate; however, its rate is not yet known. The goal of this research effort is thus to map large scale changes in Arctic tundra vegetation by exploiting the structural signal in moderate resolution satellite remote sensing images from NASA's Multiangle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR), mapped onto a 250m Albers Conic Equal Area grid. We present here large area shrub mapping supported by reference data collated using extensive field inventory data and high resolution panchromatic imagery. MISR Level 1B2 Terrain radiance scenes from the Terra satellite from 15 June-31 July, 2000 - 2010 were converted to surface bidirectional reflectance factors (BRF) using MISR Toolkit routines and the MISR 1 km LAND product BRFs. The red band data in all available cameras were used to invert the RossThick-LiSparse-Reciprocal BRDF model to retrieve kernel weights, model-fitting RMSE, and Weights of Determination. The reference database was constructed using aerial survey, three field campaigns (field inventory for shrub count, cover, mean radius and height), and high resolution imagery. Tall shrub number, mean crown radius, cover, and mean height estimates were obtained from QuickBird and GeoEye panchromatic image chips using the CANAPI algorithm, and calibrated using field-based estimates, thus extending the database to over eight hundred locations. Tall shrub fractional cover maps for the North Slope of Alaska were constructed using the bootstrap forest machine learning algorithm that exploits the surface information provided by MISR. The reference database was divided into two datasets for training and validation. The model derived used a set of 19 independent variables(the three kernel weights, ratios and interaction terms

  13. Terrimonas arctica sp. nov., isolated from Arctic tundra soil.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Fan; Qiu, Xia; Chang, Xulu; Qu, Zhihao; Ren, Lvzhi; Kan, Wenjing; Guo, Youhao; Fang, Chengxiang; Peng, Fang

    2014-11-01

    A novel, Gram-stain-negative, aerobic, non-motile and rod-shaped bacterium, designated R9-86(T), was isolated from tundra soil collected near Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard Archipelago, Norway (78° N). Growth occurred at 4-28 °C (optimum, 22-25 °C) and at pH 6.0-9.0 (optimum, pH 7.0). Flexirubin-type pigments were absent. Phylogenetic analysis based on 16S rRNA gene sequences indicated that strain R9-86(T) belonged to the genus Terrimonas in the family Chitinophagaceae. 16S rRNA gene sequence similarities between strain R9-86(T) and the type strains of species of the genus Terrimonas with validly published names ranged from 93.7 to 95.0%. Strain R9-86(T) contained iso-C(15:1)-G (25.7%), iso-C(15:0) (24.5%), iso-C(17:0)-3OH (18.3%) and summed feature 3 (C(16:1)ω7c and/or C(16:1)ω6c, 8.7%) as its major cellular fatty acids; phosphatidylethanolamine and an unknown polar lipid as its main polar lipids, and MK-7 as its predominant respiratory quinone. The DNA G+C content was 48.4 mol%. On the basis of phenotypic, chemotaxonomic and phylogenetic data, strain R9-86(T) is considered to represent a novel species of the genus Terrimonas, for which the name Terrimonas arctica sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is R9-86(T) ( =CCTCC AB 2011004(T) =NRRL B-59114(T)).

  14. Flowpath Transformations of Precipitation Chemistry in an Arctic Tundra Catchment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quinton, W. L.; Pomeroy, J. W.

    2003-12-01

    This paper traces the drainage pathways followed by rainfall and snowmelt in an actic tundra basin. The major hydrological processes operating within each flowpath segment from the surface of melting snow to the basin outlet are related to changes in the ion chemistry of the water flowing from each segment. In so doing, this paper offers physically-based explanations for the transformation of major ion concentrations and loads of snowmelt water as it travels to the stream outlet in this environment. Despite representing only five percent of the basin water equivalent, snow drifts were found to control the ion chemistry of the water in hillslope flowpaths and in the stream channel. As the initial pulse of ion-rich meltwater was conveyed through hillslope flowpaths, the concentrations of most ions increased, and the duration of peak ionic pulse lengthened. The hillslope runoff process also replaced Na+ and Cl-, the major ions in the percolate with Ca2+ and Mg2+. Over the first three metres of surface flow, concentrations of most ions increased by one to two orders of magnitude, which was roughly equivalent to the concentration increase that resulted from percolation of relatively dilute water through 0.25 m of unsaturated soil. On slopes below a large melting snowdrift, ion concentrations of meltwater flowing in the saturated layer of the soil were very similar to the relatively dilute concentrations found in surface runoff. However, once the snowdrift ablated, sub-surface flow ion concentrations rose steadily above parent meltwater concentrations. Water chemistry in the stream channel strongly resembled that of drainage from adjacent hillslopes. In-channel geochemical processes increased the concentration of most ions with flow distance in the major channel.

  15. Dry deposition of ammonia, nitric acid, ammonium, and nitrate to alpine tundra at Niwot Ridge, Colorado

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rattray, G.; Sievering, H.

    2001-01-01

    Micrometeorological measurements and ambient air samples, analyzed for concentrations of NH3, HNO3, NH4+, and NO3-, were collected at an alpine tundra site on Niwot Ridge, Colorado. The measured concentrations were extremely low and ranged between 5 and 70ngNm-3. Dry deposition fluxes of these atmospheric species were calculated using the micrometeorological gradient method. The calculated mean flux for NH3 indicates a net deposition to the surface and indicates that NH3 contributed significantly to the total N deposition to the tundra during the August-September measurement period. Our pre-measurement estimate of the compensation point for NH3 in air above the tundra was 100-200ngNm-3; thus, a net emission of NH3 was expected given the low ambient concentrations of NH3 observed. Based on our results, however, the NH3 compensation point at this alpine tundra site appears to have been at or below about 20ngNm-3. Large deposition velocities (>2cms-1) were determined for nitrate and ammonium and may result from reactions with surface-derived aerosols. Copyright (C) 2001 Elsevier Science B.V.Micrometeorological measurements and ambient air samples, analyzed for concentrations of NH3, HNO3, NH4+, and NO3-, were collected at an alpine tundra site on Niwot Ridge, Colorado. The measured concentrations were extremely low and ranged between 5 and 70 ng N m-3. Dry deposition fluxes of these atmospheric species were calculated using the micrometeorological gradient method. The calculated mean flux for NH3 indicates a net deposition to the surface and indicates that NH3 contributed significantly to the total N deposition to the tundra during the August-September measurement period. Our pre-measurement estimate of the compensation point for NH3 in air above the tundra was 100-200 ng N m-3; thus, a net emission of NH3 was expected given the low ambient concentrations of NH3 observed. Based on our results, however, the NH3 compensation point at this alpine tundra site appears to

  16. Modeling dynamics of tundra plant communities on the Yamal Peninsula, Russia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, Q.; Epstein, H. E.; Walker, D. A.

    2010-12-01

    Multiple environmental drivers, including climate, soil conditions and herbivory, affect arctic tundra vegetation dynamics. These factors may have been evaluated individually in the past; however, their interactions contribute to more complicated tundra plant community dynamics and may represent a substantial source of uncertainty in predicting tundra ecosystem properties in the changing Arctic. This study investigates the effects of soils, grazing, and climate change on tundra plant communities at the plant functional type (PFT) level, based on previous integrated modeling research at the ecosystem level. The study area encompasses the Yamal Peninsula, northwestern Siberia, where soil and biomass data were collected along the Yamal Arctic Transect (YAT), to drive a nutrient-based tundra vegetation model (ArcVeg) and to validate the simulation results. We analyzed plant functional type biomass and net primary productivity (NPP), and found that with higher temperatures (+2°C mean growing season temperature), most plant functional types responded positively with increased biomass and NPP, while grazing suppressed such responses in both high and low soil organic nitrogen (SON) sites. The magnitudes of the responses to warming depended on SON and grazing intensity. Relatively, there were greater responses of biomass and NPP in low SON sites compared to high SON sites. Moss biomass (in contrast to other plant types) declined 34% with warming in the low SON site and 28% in the high SON site in subzone E (the most southern tundra subzone). Increases in Low Arctic shrub biomass with warming were 61% in the high SON site in subzone E and 96% in the low SON site. Decrease in moss biomass due to warming was mitigated about 2% by high grazing frequency (maximum of 25% of biomass removal every two years) in the high SON site in subzone E, with an opposite effect in the low SON site. High grazing frequency caused greater relative increases in total shrub biomass for both low

  17. Response of tundra ecosystems to elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide: Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Oechel, W.C.

    1986-01-01

    This report includes: a detailed description of the system which we have developed for providing control of CO/sub 2/ and temperature; the effects of this treatment on ecosystem fluxes of CO/sub 2/ at ecosystem; the effects of three years CO/sub 2/ enrichment on the photosynthetic response of important tundra species; effects of mineral nutrition and CO/sub 2/ enrichment on growth, photosynthesis, and biomass partitioning of tundra species; and the effects of CO/sub 2/ on soil respiration.

  18. Biomass and production of tundra vegetation under three eddy covariance towers at Imnavait Creek, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bret-Harte, M. S.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Edgar, C.; Huebner, D. C.; Okano, K.; Tucker, C. L.; Genet, H.; Ray, P. M.; Shaver, G. R.

    2013-12-01

    Understanding the magnitude of, and controls over, CO2 and water fluxes in arctic ecosystems is essential for accurate assessment and prediction of their responses to climate change. There have been relatively few year-round studies of net CO2, water, and energy exchange using micrometeorological methods in the Arctic. We established eddy covariance flux towers in three representative Alaska tundra ecosystems along a toposequence (a ridge site composed of heath tundra and moist non-acidic tundra, a mid-slope site composed of moist acidic tussock tundra, and a valley bottom fen site composed of wet sedge tundra and moist acidic tundra), and have collected CO2, water, and energy flux data continuously for six years. Our ridge site shows a cumulative loss of CO2 over these six years, while the fen site is closer to being in balance. We have also compared net CO2 fluxes measured in chambers and scaled to the footprint of the tower with those measured by the towers. There was good agreement between chamber level fluxes and tower fluxes for overall net ecosystem exchange (NEE), but less agreement for ecosystem respiration (ER) and gross ecosystem production (GEP). In order to improve our assessments of ER and GEP, in 2013 we harvested biomass and soils from the most common community types within the source area for each flux tower during the growing season. We measured above- and belowground biomass and net primary production of the vegetation, soil C and N stocks, and plant-available soil N. Plant biomass and production were greatest in the tussock tundra at the mid-slope tower, and least in the wet sedge community at the fen tower, while plant diversity was greatest in the communities at the ridge site. Soil carbon stocks were greatest at the fen tower, which had the least cumulative CO2 loss over the six years that we have been measuring. These data will be used to improve our calculations of gross ecosystem production and ecosystem respiration, and to parameterize a

  19. Projected future duration of the sea-ice-free season in the Alaskan Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Muyin; Overland, James E.

    2015-08-01

    Global warming and continued reduction in sea ice cover will result in longer open water duration in the Arctic, which is important for the shipping industry, marine mammals, and other components of the regional ecosystem. In this study we assess the length of open water duration in the Alaskan Arctic over the next few decades using the set of latest coupled climate models (CMIP5). The Alaskan Arctic, including the Chukchi and the Beaufort Sea, has been a major region of summer sea ice retreat since 2007. Thirty five climate models from CMIP5 are evaluated and twelve are selected for composite projections based on their historical simulation performance. In the regions north of the Bering Strait (north of 70° N), future open-water duration shifts from a current 3-4 months to a projected near 5 months by 2040 based on the mean of the twelve selected climate models. There is considerable north-south gradient in projected durations. Open water duration is about 1 month shorter along the same latitudes in the Beaufort Sea compared with that in the Chukchi Sea. Uncertainty is generally ±1 month estimated from the range of model results. Open-water duration in the Alaskan Arctic expands quickly in these models over the next decades which will impact regional economic access and potentially alter ecosystems. Yet the northern Alaskan Arctic from January through May will remain sea ice covered into the second half of the century due to normal lack of sunlight.

  20. CYCLING OF DISSOLVED ELEMENTAL MERCURY IN ARCTIC ALASKAN LAKES. (R829796)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Aqueous production and water-air exchange of elemental mercury (Hg0) are important features of the environmental cycling of Hg. We investigated Hg0 cycling in ten Arctic Alaskan lakes that spanned a wide range in physicochemical characteristics. Dissolved...

  1. AlaskaAdvantage[R] Programs Annual Report to Alaskans, Year Ending June 30, 2007

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education, 2007

    2007-01-01

    Through its AlaskAdvantage[R] Programs, the Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education promotes, supports, and provides access to postsecondary education for Alaskans and in Alaska. This publication reports on another year of success for the state's higher education assistance agency. Among the accomplishments this year to make higher…

  2. Radiocarbon evidence of mid-Holocene mammoths stranded on an Alaskan Bering Sea island.

    PubMed

    Guthrie, R Dale

    2004-06-17

    Island colonization and subsequent dwarfing of Pleistocene proboscideans is one of the more dramatic evolutionary and ecological occurrences, especially in situations where island populations survived end-Pleistocene extinctions whereas those on the nearby mainland did not. For example, Holocene mammoths have been dated from Wrangel Island in northern Russia. In most of these cases, few details are available about the dynamics of how island colonization and extinction occurred. As part of a large radiocarbon dating project of Alaskan mammoth fossils, I addressed this question by including mammoth specimens from Bering Sea islands known to have formed during the end-Pleistocene sea transgression. One date of 7,908 +/- 100 yr bp (radiocarbon years before present) established the presence of Holocene mammoths on St Paul Island, a first Holocene island record for the Americas. Four lines of evidence--265 accelerator mass spectrometer (AMS) radiocarbon dates from Alaskan mainland mammoths, 13 new dates from Alaskan island mammoths, recent reconstructions of bathymetric plots and sea transgression rates from the Bering Sea--made it possible to reconstruct how mammoths became stranded in the Pribilofs and why this apparently did not happen on other Alaskan Bering Sea islands.

  3. American Indian/Alaskan Native Grandparents Raising Grandchildren: Findings from the Census 2000 Supplementary Survey

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fuller-Thomson, Esme; Minkler, Meredith

    2005-01-01

    This article documents the prevalence and national profile of American Indian/Alaskan Native (AI/AN) grandparents who are raising their grandchildren, based on data from the American Community Survey/Census 2000 Supplementary Survey. In 2000 there were estimated to be nearly 53,000 AI/AN grandparent caregivers age 45 and older in the United…

  4. 36 CFR 223.10 - Free use to Alaskan settlers, miners, residents, and prospectors.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE SALE AND DISPOSAL OF NATIONAL FOREST SYSTEM TIMBER, SPECIAL FOREST... may take free of charge green or dried timber from the National Forests in Alaska for personal use but... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2014-07-01 2014-07-01 false Free use to Alaskan...

  5. 36 CFR 223.10 - Free use to Alaskan settlers, miners, residents, and prospectors.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE SALE AND DISPOSAL OF NATIONAL FOREST SYSTEM TIMBER, SPECIAL FOREST... may take free of charge green or dried timber from the National Forests in Alaska for personal use but... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2013-07-01 2013-07-01 false Free use to Alaskan...

  6. 36 CFR 223.10 - Free use to Alaskan settlers, miners, residents, and prospectors.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE SALE AND DISPOSAL OF NATIONAL FOREST SYSTEM TIMBER, SPECIAL FOREST... may take free of charge green or dried timber from the National Forests in Alaska for personal use but... 36 Parks, Forests, and Public Property 2 2012-07-01 2012-07-01 false Free use to Alaskan...

  7. Alaskan Native Social Adjustment and the Role of Eskimo and Indian Music

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnston, Thomas F.

    1976-01-01

    Suggests that research into the social and psychological implications of Alaskan Eskimo and Indian musical behavior will continue to provide useful clues to solving current inter-cultural and intra-cultural problems in changing Alaska, particularly within the real of Eskimo and Indian preschool and primary education. (Author/AM)

  8. College Orientation Program for Alaskan Natives (COPAN Program - Education for Survival). Final Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salisbury, Lee H.

    Of the original number of Alaskan natives entering the University of Alaska from rural and urban areas, 50% drop out at the end of their freshman year, and less than 2% are likely to receive a degree at the end of 4 years. This high attrition rate is caused by poor elementary and secondary school preparation, and strong personal feelings of…

  9. Poly(hydroxyalkanoate) Biosynthesis from Crude Alaskan Pollock (Theragra chalcogramma) Oil

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Six strains of Pseudomonas were tested for their abilities to synthesize poly(hydroxyalkanoate) (PHA) polymers from crude Pollock oil, a large volume byproduct of the Alaskan fishing industry. All six strains were found to produce PHA polymers from hydrolyzed Pollock oil with productivities (P; the...

  10. Alaskan Fish Gelatin Films: Thermal, Tensile, and Barrier Properties and Effects of Cross-linking

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Gelatin was extracted from the skins of Alaska pollock (Theragra chalcogramma) and Alaska pink salmon (Oncorhynchus gorbuscha). These skins were by-products generated from the Alaskan fishing industry. Films were then cast from the fish gelatin and their thermal, tensile, water vapor permeability, o...

  11. Understanding the Complex Dimensions of the Digital Divide: Lessons Learned in the Alaskan Arctic

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Subramony, Deepak Prem

    2007-01-01

    An ethnographic case study of Inupiat Eskimo in the Alaskan Arctic has provided insights into the complex nature of the sociological issues surrounding equitable access to technology tools and skills, which are referred to as the digital divide. These people can overcome the digital divide if they get the basic ready access to hardware and…

  12. Alaska Is Our Home--Book 2: A Natural Science Handbook for Alaskan Students.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bury, John; Bury, Susan

    A natural science resource booklet for teachers and students contains detailed materials for teaching and learning about Alaskan wildlife. Each of nine chapters provides background subject information, suggested learning activities, tear-out pages of review questions for students to answer, and supplementary notes for teachers which include…

  13. Intensive Evaluation of Satellite TV Impact on Four Alaskan Villages. Supplement to Basic ESCD Evaluation Design.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Practical Concepts, Inc., Washington, DC.

    A supplement to the final report, "Design for an Analysis and Assessment of the Education Satellite Communications Demonstration (ESCD)," this document is both: (1) a separable, sociologically oriented evaluation of the ESCD impact on Alaskan native villages; and (2) a direct extension of the work described in sections 4 and 5 in the Practical…

  14. It Happens When We Get There. Conversations With Teachers in Alaskan Villages.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beers, C. David

    Developed through in-depth interviews with experienced "bush" teachers from interior Alaska, this booklet is the product of a five-day workshop in the design of vocational education curriculum materials for rural Alaskan secondary schools. The statements in this booklet represent the edited responses of experienced teachers to the following…

  15. EXAMINATION OF THE FEASIBILITY FOR DEMONSTRATION AND USE OF RADIOLUMINESCENT LIGHTS FOR ALASKAN REMOTE RUNWAY LIGHTING

    SciTech Connect

    Jensen, G.; Perrigo, L.; Leonard, L.; Hegdal, L

    1984-01-01

    This report examines the feasibility of radioluminescent light applications for rural Alaskan airports. The work presented in this report covers four tasks: State of the Art Evaluation of Radioluminescent Lights, Environmental, Radiological, and Regulatory Evaluations, Engineering Evaluations, and Demonstration Plan Development.

  16. Petroleum systems of the Alaskan North Slope: a numerical journey from source to trap

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lampe, C.; Peters, K.E.; Magoon, L.B.; Bird, K.J.; Lillis, P.G.

    2003-01-01

    The complex petroleum province of the Alaskan North Slope contains six petroleum systems (Magoon and others, this session). Source rocks for four of these systems include the Hue-gamma ray zone (Hue-GRZ), pebble shale unit, Kingak Shale, and Shublik Formation. Geochemical data for these source rocks are investigated in greater detail and provide the basis for numerical petroleum migration models.

  17. Alaskan glaciers: Recent observations in respect to the earthquake-advance theory

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Post, A.S.

    1965-01-01

    Preliminary aerial photographic studies indicate that the Alaskan earthquake produced some rockfalls but no significant snow and ice avalanches on glaciers. No rapid, short-lived glacier advances (surges) are conclusively associated with this earthquake. Recent evidence fails to support the earthquake-advance theory of Tarr and Martin.

  18. Shaping the Landscape: A Journal of Writing by Alaskan Teachers 1992.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Longenbaugh, Betsy, Ed.

    Intended to encourage Alaska teachers to write, to provide an honest sounding board for those submitting work, and to be a pleasure to read, this booklet presents a collection of 20 pieces of writing (short stories, poems, and life experiences) by Alaskan teachers. The pieces and their authors are as follows: "The First Haiku" (Dan Walker);…

  19. Implications of lifting the ban on the export of Alaskan crude oil

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1990-03-26

    Present legislation effectively bans the export of crude oil produced in the United States. The ban has been in effect for years and is particularly stringent with respect to crude oil produced in Alaska, particularly on the North Slope. The Alaska crude export ban is specifically provided for in the Trans-Alaska Pipeline Authorization Act of 1973 and in other legislation. It was imposed for two reasons. The first was to reduce US dependence on imported crude oil. The Arab oil embargo had been imposed shortly before the Act was passed and a greater measure of energy independence was considered imperative at that time. The second reason was to assure that funds expended in building an Alaskan pipeline would benefit domestic users rather than simply employed to facilitate shipments to other countries. The main objective of this report is to estimate the potential impacts on crude oil prices that would result from lifting the export ban Alaskan crude oil. The report focuses on the Japanese market and the US West Coast market. Japan is the principal potential export market for Alaskan crude oil. Exports to that market would also affect the price of Alaskan crude oil as well as crude oil and product prices on the West Coast and the volume of petroleum imported in that area. 3 figs., 8 tabs.

  20. 77 FR 45921 - Alaskan Fuel Hauling as a Restricted Category Special Purpose Flight Operation

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-08-02

    ... the Federal Register (74 FR 39242) in which the FAA proposed to specify Alaskan fuel hauling as a... Purpose Flight Operation AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), (DOT). ACTION: Notice of policy... submitted was, ``The transport of the fuel could be made safer by limiting the payload on each flight to...

  1. Alaskan Native Games--A Cross-Cultural Addition to the Physical Education Curriculum.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Frey, Richard D.; Allen, Mike

    1989-01-01

    Importing traditional, yet unknown, physical activities from different cultures is an exciting way to add creativity and imagination to the physical education curriculum. Explanations, accompanied by teaching hints, are given of several traditional Alaskan native games which have been successfully used with K-Six students in the Anchorage School…

  2. Controls on Ecosystem and Root Respiration in an Alaskan Peatland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McConnell, N. A.; McGuire, A. D.; Harden, J. W.; Kane, E. S.; Turetsky, M. R.

    2010-12-01

    Boreal ecosystems cover 14% of the vegetated surface on earth and account for 25-30% of the world’s soil carbon (C), mainly due to large carbon stocks in deep peat and frozen soil layers. While peatlands have served as historical sinks of carbon, global climate change may trigger re-release of C to the atmosphere and may turn these ecosystems into net C sources. Rates of C release from a peatland are determined by regional climate and local biotic and abiotic factors such as vegetation cover, thaw depth, and peat thickness. Soil CO2 fluxes are driven by both autotrophic (plant) respiration and heterotrophic (microbial) respiration. Thus, changes in plant and microbial activity in the soil will impact CO2 emissions from peatlands. In this study, we explored environmental and vegetation controls on ecosystem respiration and root respiration in a variety of wetland sites. The study was conducted at the Alaskan Peatland Experiment (APEX; www.uoguelph.ca/APEX) sites in the Bonanza Creek Experimental Forest located 35 km southwest of Fairbanks Alaska. We measured ecosystem respiration, root respiration, and monitored a suite of environmental variables along a vegetation and soil moisture gradient including a black spruce stand with permafrost, a shrubby site with permafrost, a tussock grass site, and a herbaceous open rich fen. Within the rich fen, we have been conducting water table manipulations including a control, lowered, and raised water table treatment. In each of our sites, we measured total ecosystem respiration using static chambers and root respiration by harvesting roots from the uppermost 20 cm and placing them in a root cuvette to obtain a root flux. Ecosystem respiration (ER) on a μmol/m2/sec basis varied across sites. Water table was a significant predictor of ER at the lowered manipulation site and temperature was a strong predictor at the control site in the rich fen. Water table and temperature were both significant predictors of ER at the raised

  3. Seasonal Variations of Biomass Burning Tracers in Alaskan Aerosols

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Haque, M. M.; Kawamura, K.; Kim, Y.

    2015-12-01

    Biomass burning (BB) is a large source of atmospheric trace gases and aerosols. During the burning, several organic and inorganic gases and particles are emitted into the atmosphere. Here, we present seasonal variations of specific BB tracers such as levoglucosan, mannosan and galactosan, which are produced by pyrolysis of cellulose and hemicelluloses. We collected TSP aerosol samples (n= 32) from Fairbanks, Alaska in June 2008 to June 2009. Levoglucosan was detected as the dominant anhydrosugar followed by its isomers, mannosan and galactosan. The result of levoglucosan showed clear seasonal trends with winter maximum (ave.145 ng m-3) and spring minimum (12.3 ng m-3). The analyses of air mass back trajectories and fire spots demonstrated that anhydrosugars may be associated from residential heating and cooking in local region and Siberia in winter time. Levoglucosan showed significant positive correlation with EC (r= 0.67, p= 0.001) and OC (r= 0.51, p= 0.002) but there was no correlation with nss-K+ (r= -0.16, p= 0.37). The emission of K+ from biomass burning depends on burning condition and types of material burned. There are two possible reasons, which can be explained for the lack of correlation between levoglucosan and K+. First, specific burning materials may be used for residential heating, which can't produce K+. Secondly, K+ could be deposit on the surface of chimney breast and it can't emit into the atmosphere. Anhydrosugars contributed 4.4% to water-soluble organic carbon (WSOC) and 2.4% to organic carbon (OC). Their highest values of WSOC (8.1%) and OC (4.9%) in wintertime indicate that contribution of BB to Alaskan aerosols is important in winter period. The current study presents for the first time one-year observation on BB tracers in the subarctic region, which provide useful information to better understand the effect of biomass burning on subarctic atmosphere. It will also be helpful for further long-term climate studies in this region.

  4. Quantitative Interpretation of Arctic Tundra Attributes Using Remote Sensing: Leveraging Field Data, Modern- and Legacy Landsat Data, and Commercial Imagery in Northern Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frost, G. V., Jr.; Macander, M. J.; Nelson, P. R.

    2014-12-01

    Integrated analysis of ground-based vegetation data and remote sensing supports vegetation mapping, landscape-change detection, wildlife habitat assessment, and tracking of phenological events such as green-up and senescence. The life-cycles of tundra plants occur within a highly compressed seasonal window, making the quantitative assessment of vegetation and landscape attributes from ≤30m resolution remotely-sensed imagery, such as above-ground biomass, % shrub cover, and % surface water, a difficult task when applied across large study domains. To support mapping of vegetation and landscape attributes across ~100,000 km2 of Alaska's North Slope, we obtained ground data for tundra vegetation using a point-intercept sampling approach across a network of 107 field plots spanning gradients of bioclimate, landscape position (upland, lowland, riverine), and geomorphic setting (foothills, coastal plain). At each plot, vegetation data were collected along three 50-m linear transects, compatible with 30-m Landsat imagery. We summarized live vegetation, litter, and non-vegetated surfaces using three terms: top cover (uppermost "hit"), percent cover (total areal cover along transect), and hit density (all "hits" at a point). We then evaluated a suite of data models (e.g., General Additive Models, classification tree, clustering) and data-mining approaches (e.g., neural networks, random forest) using midsummer Landsat TM/ETM+ acquisitions since 1985, and OLI acquisitions for 2013-2014. The large size, frequent cloudiness, and interannual variability of the study area necessitated the compositing of a multitude of Landsat scenes. A median NDVI compositing technique was used to select Landsat observations from cloud- and shadow-free pixels that met day-of-year and year constraints. This technique produced seamless, phenologically consistent composites that are largely free of artifacts and suitable for regional-scale analysis. Ground-based training data and an archive of

  5. Estimating carbon and energy fluxes in arctic tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gokkaya, K.; Jiang, Y.; Rastetter, E.; Shaver, G. R.; Rocha, A. V.

    2013-12-01

    Arctic ecosystems are undergoing a very rapid change due to climate change and their response to climate change has important implications for the global energy budget and carbon (C) cycling. Therefore, it is important to understand how (C) and energy fluxes in the Arctic will respond to climate change. However, attribution of these responses to climate is challenging because measured fluxes are the sum of multiple processes that respond differently to environmental factors. For example, net ecosystem exchange of CO2 (NEE) is the net result of gross (C) uptake by plant photosynthesis (GPP) and (C) loss by ecosystem respiration (ER) and similarly, evapotranspiration (i.e. latent energy, LE) is the sum of transpiration and evaporation. Partitioning of NEE into GPP and ER requires nighttime measurements of NEE, when photosynthesis does not take place, to be extrapolated to daytime. This is challenging in the Arctic because of the long photoperiod during the growing season and the errors involved during the extrapolation. Transpiration (energy), photosynthesis (carbon), and vegetation phenology are inherently coupled because leaf stomata are the primary regulators of gas exchange. Our objectives in this study are to i) estimate canopy resistance (Rc) based on a light use efficiency model, ii) utilize the estimated Rc to predict GPP and transpiration using a coupled C and energy model and thus improve the partitioning of NEE and LE, and iii) to test ensemble Kalman filter (EnKF) to estimate model parameters and improve model predictions. Results from one growing season showed that the model predictions can explain 75 and 71% of the variance in GPP and LE in the Arctic tundra ecosystem, respectively. When the model was embedded within the EnKF for estimating Rc, the amount of variance explained for GPP increased to 81% but there was no improvement for the prediction of LE. This suggests that the factors controlling LE are not fully integrated in the model such as the

  6. Methane production in sediments of small tundra ponds during winter

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Macrae, M. L.; Fishback, L.; Bourbonniere, R. A.; Duguay, C. R.; Soliman, A. S.

    2011-12-01

    Shallow tundra ponds in the Churchill region of the Hudson Bay Lowlands (HBL) store large quantities of organic material in the form of sediments. Organic sediments in ponds and wetlands have been identified as a source of atmospheric methane (CH4) during the summer season in many landscapes. However, less is known about CH4 production and emission during the winter months, following the formation of an ice layer on the water surface. Unfrozen sediments may continue to produce methane (CH4) during this time, which may become trapped in the ponds beneath the ice layer. This occurrence has been identified in some regions through the sampling and analysis of CH4 bubbles frozen in lake ice. The goal of this project is to examine the potential for the production and trapping of CH4 in ponds beneath the pond ice (water/ice and sediment profiles) in the Churchill region of the HBL. Thermistor and gas sampling arrays were installed in the water and sediments of two ponds. Gas samples were collected at 1-4 week intervals at the sediment-water interface and at 0-15cm and 20-35 cm depth. Results show that sediments are indeed thawed for 3-4 months of the winter season, and deeper sediments remain within the range of 0 to -5 C whereas shallow sediment temperatures ranged between 10 and -10 C over an annual cycle. Laboratory experiments showed that little difference in CH4 production was observed at sediment temperatures between -2 and 5 C, whereas production was very low at -10 C. No significant differences in CH4 production rates were observed for different sediment depths in the laboratory. Field data collected between August 2010 and June 2011 showed consistent accumulation of CH4 in sediments following the formation of an ice layer on pond surfaces. However, CH4 concentrations in gas samplers decreased in February through April after sediments were frozen, but began to increase again (May-June) as sediments thawed and began to warm. Future work will include the examination

  7. Transformations Of Runoff Chemistry In An Arctic Tundra Catchment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quinton, W. L.; Pomeroy, J. W.

    2004-05-01

    This paper traces the transformation of snow meltwater chemical composition during melt, elution and runoff in an Arctic tundra basin. The chemistry of the water flowing through pathway segments from the surface of melting snow to the basin outlet are related to the relevant hydrological processes. In so doing, this paper offers physically-based explanations for the transformation of major ion concentrations and loads of runoff water arising from snowmelt and rainfall input as it travels to the stream outlet in this environment. Late-lying snow drifts were found to greatly influence the ion chemistry in adjacent reaches of the stream channel. As the initial pulse of ion-rich meltwater drained from the drift and was conveyed through hillslope flowpaths, the concentrations of most ions increased, and the duration of peak ionic pulse lengthened. Over the first three metres of surface flow, the concentrations of all ions except for NO3- increased by one to two orders of magnitude, with the largest increase occurring for K+, Ca2+ and Mg2+. This was roughly equivalent to the concentration increase that resulted from percolation of relatively dilute water through 0.25 m of unsaturated soil. The hillslope runoff pathways replaced Na+ and Cl-, the major ions in the snow melt percolate arriving at the ground surface with Ca2+ and Mg2+. On slopes below a large melting snowdrift, ion concentrations of meltwater flowing in the saturated layer of the soil were very similar to the relatively dilute concentrations found in surface runoff. However, once the snowdrift ablated, sub-surface flow ion concentrations rose steadily above parent meltwater concentrations. Three seasonally-characteristic hydro-chemical regimes were identified in a stream reach adjacent to late-lying drifts. In the first two stages, the water chemistry in the stream channel strongly resembled that of the hillslope drainage water. In the third stage, in-stream geochemical processes, particularly weathering of

  8. CLIMATIC EFFECTS ON TUNDRA CARBON STORAGE INFERRED FROM EXPERIMENTAL DATA AND A MODEL

    EPA Science Inventory

    We used a process-based model of ecosystem carbon (C) and nitrogen (N)dynamics, MBL-GEM (Marine Biological Laboratory General Ecosystem Model), to integrated and analyze the results of several experiments that examined the response of arctic tussock tundra to manipulations of CO2...

  9. Global assessment of experimental climate warming on tundra vegetation: heterogeneity over space and time.

    PubMed

    Elmendorf, Sarah C; Henry, Gregory H R; Hollister, Robert D; Björk, Robert G; Bjorkman, Anne D; Callaghan, Terry V; Collier, Laura Siegwart; Cooper, Elisabeth J; Cornelissen, Johannes H C; Day, Thomas A; Fosaa, Anna Maria; Gould, William A; Grétarsdóttir, Járngerður; Harte, John; Hermanutz, Luise; Hik, David S; Hofgaard, Annika; Jarrad, Frith; Jónsdóttir, Ingibjörg Svala; Keuper, Frida; Klanderud, Kari; Klein, Julia A; Koh, Saewan; Kudo, Gaku; Lang, Simone I; Loewen, Val; May, Jeremy L; Mercado, Joel; Michelsen, Anders; Molau, Ulf; Myers-Smith, Isla H; Oberbauer, Steven F; Pieper, Sara; Post, Eric; Rixen, Christian; Robinson, Clare H; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Shaver, Gaius R; Stenström, Anna; Tolvanen, Anne; Totland, Orjan; Troxler, Tiffany; Wahren, Carl-Henrik; Webber, Patrick J; Welker, Jeffery M; Wookey, Philip A

    2012-02-01

    Understanding the sensitivity of tundra vegetation to climate warming is critical to forecasting future biodiversity and vegetation feedbacks to climate. In situ warming experiments accelerate climate change on a small scale to forecast responses of local plant communities. Limitations of this approach include the apparent site-specificity of results and uncertainty about the power of short-term studies to anticipate longer term change. We address these issues with a synthesis of 61 experimental warming studies, of up to 20 years duration, in tundra sites worldwide. The response of plant groups to warming often differed with ambient summer temperature, soil moisture and experimental duration. Shrubs increased with warming only where ambient temperature was high, whereas graminoids increased primarily in the coldest study sites. Linear increases in effect size over time were frequently observed. There was little indication of saturating or accelerating effects, as would be predicted if negative or positive vegetation feedbacks were common. These results indicate that tundra vegetation exhibits strong regional variation in response to warming, and that in vulnerable regions, cumulative effects of long-term warming on tundra vegetation - and associated ecosystem consequences - have the potential to be much greater than we have observed to date. PMID:22136670

  10. Assessing the Tundra-taiga Boundary with Multi-Sensor Satellite Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ranson, K. J.; Sun, G.; Kharuk, V. I.; Kovacs, K.

    2004-01-01

    Monitoring the dynamics of the circumpolar boreal forest (taiga) and Arctic tundra boundary is important for understanding the causes and consequences of changes observed in these areas. This ecotone, the world's largest, stretches for over 13,400 km and marks the transition between the northern limits of forests and the southern margin of the tundra. Because of the inaccessibility and large extent of this zone, remote sensing data can play an important role for mapping the characteristics and monitoring the dynamics. Basic understanding of the capabilities of existing space borne instruments for these purposes is required. In this study we examined the use of several remote sensing techniques for identifying the existing tundra- taiga ecotone. These include Landsat-7, MISR, MODIS and RADARSAT data. Historical cover maps, recent forest stand measurements and high-resolution IKONOS images were used for local ground truth. It was found that a tundra-taiga transitional area can be characterized using multi- spectral Landsat ETM+ summer images, multi-angle MISR red band reflectance images, RADARSAT images with larger incidence angle, or multi-temporal and multi-spectral MODIS data. Because of different resolutions and spectral regions covered, the transition zone maps derived from different data types were not identical, but the general patterns were consistent.

  11. Global assessment of experimental climate warming on tundra vegetation: heterogeneity over space and time.

    PubMed

    Elmendorf, Sarah C; Henry, Gregory H R; Hollister, Robert D; Björk, Robert G; Bjorkman, Anne D; Callaghan, Terry V; Collier, Laura Siegwart; Cooper, Elisabeth J; Cornelissen, Johannes H C; Day, Thomas A; Fosaa, Anna Maria; Gould, William A; Grétarsdóttir, Járngerður; Harte, John; Hermanutz, Luise; Hik, David S; Hofgaard, Annika; Jarrad, Frith; Jónsdóttir, Ingibjörg Svala; Keuper, Frida; Klanderud, Kari; Klein, Julia A; Koh, Saewan; Kudo, Gaku; Lang, Simone I; Loewen, Val; May, Jeremy L; Mercado, Joel; Michelsen, Anders; Molau, Ulf; Myers-Smith, Isla H; Oberbauer, Steven F; Pieper, Sara; Post, Eric; Rixen, Christian; Robinson, Clare H; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Shaver, Gaius R; Stenström, Anna; Tolvanen, Anne; Totland, Orjan; Troxler, Tiffany; Wahren, Carl-Henrik; Webber, Patrick J; Welker, Jeffery M; Wookey, Philip A

    2012-02-01

    Understanding the sensitivity of tundra vegetation to climate warming is critical to forecasting future biodiversity and vegetation feedbacks to climate. In situ warming experiments accelerate climate change on a small scale to forecast responses of local plant communities. Limitations of this approach include the apparent site-specificity of results and uncertainty about the power of short-term studies to anticipate longer term change. We address these issues with a synthesis of 61 experimental warming studies, of up to 20 years duration, in tundra sites worldwide. The response of plant groups to warming often differed with ambient summer temperature, soil moisture and experimental duration. Shrubs increased with warming only where ambient temperature was high, whereas graminoids increased primarily in the coldest study sites. Linear increases in effect size over time were frequently observed. There was little indication of saturating or accelerating effects, as would be predicted if negative or positive vegetation feedbacks were common. These results indicate that tundra vegetation exhibits strong regional variation in response to warming, and that in vulnerable regions, cumulative effects of long-term warming on tundra vegetation - and associated ecosystem consequences - have the potential to be much greater than we have observed to date.

  12. Importance of Marine-Derived Nutrients Supplied by Planktivorous Seabirds to High Arctic Tundra Plant Communities.

    PubMed

    Zwolicki, Adrian; Zmudczyńska-Skarbek, Katarzyna; Richard, Pierre; Stempniewicz, Lech

    2016-01-01

    We studied the relative importance of several environmental factors for tundra plant communities in five locations across Svalbard (High Arctic) that differed in geographical location, oceanographic and climatic influence, and soil characteristics. The amount of marine-derived nitrogen in the soil supplied by seabirds was locally the most important of the studied environmental factors influencing the tundra plant community. We found a strong positive correlation between δ15N isotopic values and total N content in the soil, confirming the fundamental role of marine-derived matter to the generally nutrient-poor Arctic tundra ecosystem. We also recorded a strong correlation between the δ15N values of soil and of the tissues of vascular plants and mosses, but not of lichens. The relationship between soil δ15N values and vascular plant cover was linear. In the case of mosses, the percentage ground cover reached maximum around a soil δ 15N value of 8‰, as did plant community diversity. This soil δ15N value clearly separated the occurrence of plants with low nitrogen tolerance (e.g. Salix polaris) from those predominating on high N content soils (e.g. Cerastium arcticum, Poa alpina). Large colonies of planktivorous little auks have a great influence on Arctic tundra vegetation, either through enhancing plant abundance or in shaping plant community composition at a local scale. PMID:27149113

  13. Determining Regional Arctic Tundra Carbon Exchange: A Bottom-Up Approach

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Huemmrich, Fred

    2006-01-01

    This viewgraph presentation reviews the carbon atmospheric exchange with Arctic tundra. In the Arctic the ecosystem has been a net carbon sink. The project investigates the question of how might climate warming effect high latitude ecosystems and the Earth ecosystems and how to measure the changes.

  14. Importance of Marine-Derived Nutrients Supplied by Planktivorous Seabirds to High Arctic Tundra Plant Communities.

    PubMed

    Zwolicki, Adrian; Zmudczyńska-Skarbek, Katarzyna; Richard, Pierre; Stempniewicz, Lech

    2016-01-01

    We studied the relative importance of several environmental factors for tundra plant communities in five locations across Svalbard (High Arctic) that differed in geographical location, oceanographic and climatic influence, and soil characteristics. The amount of marine-derived nitrogen in the soil supplied by seabirds was locally the most important of the studied environmental factors influencing the tundra plant community. We found a strong positive correlation between δ15N isotopic values and total N content in the soil, confirming the fundamental role of marine-derived matter to the generally nutrient-poor Arctic tundra ecosystem. We also recorded a strong correlation between the δ15N values of soil and of the tissues of vascular plants and mosses, but not of lichens. The relationship between soil δ15N values and vascular plant cover was linear. In the case of mosses, the percentage ground cover reached maximum around a soil δ 15N value of 8‰, as did plant community diversity. This soil δ15N value clearly separated the occurrence of plants with low nitrogen tolerance (e.g. Salix polaris) from those predominating on high N content soils (e.g. Cerastium arcticum, Poa alpina). Large colonies of planktivorous little auks have a great influence on Arctic tundra vegetation, either through enhancing plant abundance or in shaping plant community composition at a local scale.

  15. DIFFERENTIATION IN N15 UPTAKE AND THE ORGANIZATION OF AN ARCTIC TUNDRA PLANT COMMUNITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    We used N15 soil-labeling techniques to examine how the dominant species in a N-limited, tussock tundra plant community partitioned soil N, and how such partitioning may contribute to community organization. The five most abundant species were well differentiated with respect to...

  16. Importance of Marine-Derived Nutrients Supplied by Planktivorous Seabirds to High Arctic Tundra Plant Communities

    PubMed Central

    Zwolicki, Adrian; Zmudczyńska-Skarbek, Katarzyna; Richard, Pierre; Stempniewicz, Lech

    2016-01-01

    We studied the relative importance of several environmental factors for tundra plant communities in five locations across Svalbard (High Arctic) that differed in geographical location, oceanographic and climatic influence, and soil characteristics. The amount of marine-derived nitrogen in the soil supplied by seabirds was locally the most important of the studied environmental factors influencing the tundra plant community. We found a strong positive correlation between δ15N isotopic values and total N content in the soil, confirming the fundamental role of marine-derived matter to the generally nutrient-poor Arctic tundra ecosystem. We also recorded a strong correlation between the δ15N values of soil and of the tissues of vascular plants and mosses, but not of lichens. The relationship between soil δ15N values and vascular plant cover was linear. In the case of mosses, the percentage ground cover reached maximum around a soil δ 15N value of 8‰, as did plant community diversity. This soil δ15N value clearly separated the occurrence of plants with low nitrogen tolerance (e.g. Salix polaris) from those predominating on high N content soils (e.g. Cerastium arcticum, Poa alpina). Large colonies of planktivorous little auks have a great influence on Arctic tundra vegetation, either through enhancing plant abundance or in shaping plant community composition at a local scale. PMID:27149113

  17. Micrometeorological measurements of CH4 and CO2 exchange between the atmosphere and subarctic tundra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Fan, S. M.; Wofsy, S. C.; Bakwin, P. S.; Jacob, D. J.; Anderson, S. M.; Kebabian, P. L.; Mcmanus, J. B.; Kolb, C. E.; Fitzjarrald, D. R.

    1992-01-01

    Eddy correlation flux measurements and concentration profiles of total hydrocarbons (THC) and CO2 were combined to provide a comprehensive record of atmosphere-biosphere exchange for these gases over a 30-day period in July-August 1988 in the Yukon-Kuskokwin River Delta of Alaska. Over 90 percent of net ecosystem exchanges of THC were due to methane. Lakes and wet meadow tundra provided the major sources of methane. The average fluxes from lake, dry tundra, and wet tundra were 11 +/- 3, 29 +/- 3, and 57 +/- 6 mg CH4/sq m/d, respectively. The mean remission rate for the site was 25 mg/sq m/d. Maximum uptake of CO2 by the tundra was 1.4 gC/sq m/d between 1000 and 1500 hrs, and nocturnal respiration averaged 0.73 gC/sq m/d. Net uptake of CO2 was 0.30 gC/sq m/d for the 30 days of measurement; methane flux accounted for 6 percent of CO2 net uptake.

  18. Does earlier snowmelt lead to greater CO2 sequestration in two low Arctic tundra ecosystems?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Humphreys, Elyn R.; Lafleur, Peter M.

    2011-05-01

    Some studies have reported that spring warming and earlier snowmelt leads to increased CO2 sequestration in Arctic terrestrial ecosystems. We measured tundra-atmosphere CO2 exchange via eddy covariance at two low Arctic sites (mixed upland tundra and sedge fen) in central Canada over multiple snow-free periods to assess this hypothesis. Both sites were net sinks for atmospheric CO2 in all years (2004-2010), but with high interannual variability. Despite a large range in snowmelt date (30 days), we did not find a statistically significant correlation between seasonal accumulated net ecosystem production (NEP) and snowmelt for either site. Although many factors can influence seasonal total NEP, our analysis shows that annual variations in photosynthetic capacity, likely driven by changes in leaf area, is a dominating control at these Arctic sites. At the upland tundra site, protection of overwintering buds by a longer duration of deep snow appears to be linked to greater photosynthetic capacity and NEP. Whereas at the fen site, sedge growth benefits from earlier snowmelt resulting in a strong correlation with early season NEP and an increase in total study period NEP with increasing growing degree days. These results highlight the complexity of interannual variation in ecosystem CO2 exchange in Arctic tundra and suggest that snowmelt date alone cannot predict seasonal, or annual, NEP.

  19. Alpine forest-tundra ecotone response to temperature change,Sayan Mountains, Siberia

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ranson, K Jon; Kharuk, Vyetcheslav I.

    2007-01-01

    Models of climate change predict shifts of vegetation zones. Tree response to climate trends is most likely observable in the forest-tundra ecotone, where temperature mainly limits tree growth. There is evidence of vegetation change on the northern treeline However, observations on alpine tree line response are controversial. In this NEESPI related study we show that during the past three decades in the forest-tundra ecotone of the Sayan Mountains, Siberia, there was an increase in forest stand crown closure, regeneration propagation into the alpine tundra, and transformation of prostrate Siberian pine and fir into arboreal forms. We found that these changes occurred since the mid 1980s, and strongly correlates with positive temperature (and to a lesser extent, precipitation) trends. Improving climate for forest growth( i.e., warmer temperatures and increased precipitation) provides competitive advantages to Siberian pine in the alpine forest-tundra ecotone, as well as in areas typically dominated by larch, where it has been found to be forming a secondary canopy layer. Substitution of deciduous conifer, larch, for evergreen conifers, decreases albedo and provides positive feedback for temperature increase.

  20. Genome sequence of Pedobacter arcticus sp. nov., a sea ice bacterium isolated from tundra soil.

    PubMed

    Yin, Ye; Yue, Guidong; Gao, Qiang; Wang, Zhiyong; Peng, Fang; Fang, Chengxiang; Yang, Xu; Pan, Li

    2012-12-01

    Pedobacter arcticus sp. nov. was originally isolated from tundra soil collected from Ny-Ålesund, in the Arctic region of Norway. It is a Gram-negative bacterium which shows bleb-shaped appendages on the cell surface. Here, we report the draft annotated genome sequence of Pedobacter arcticus sp. nov., which belongs to the genus Pedobacter.

  1. Will Arctic ground squirrels impede or accelerate climate-induced vegetation changes to the Arctic tundra?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalton, J.; Flower, C. E.; Brown, J.; Gonzalez-Meler, M. A.; Whelan, C.

    2014-12-01

    Considerable attention has been given to the climate feedbacks associated with predicted vegetation shifts in the Arctic tundra in response to global environmental change. However, little is known regarding the extent to which consumers can facilitate or respond to shrub expansion. Arctic ground squirrels, the largest and most northern ground squirrel, are abundant and widespread throughout the North American tundra. Their broad diet of seeds, flowers, herbage, bird's eggs and meat speaks to the need to breed, feed, and fatten in a span of some 12-16 weeks that separate their 8-9 month bouts of hibernation with the potential consequence to impact ecosystem dynamics. Therefore Arctic ground squirrels are a good candidate to evaluate whether consumers are mere responders (bottom-up effects) or drivers (top-down) of the observed and predicted vegetation changes. As a start towards this question, we measured the foraging intensity (giving-up densities) of Arctic ground squirrels in experimental food patches within which the squirrels experience diminishing returns as they seek the raisins and peanuts that we provided at the Toolik Lake field station in northern Alaska. If the squirrels show their highest feeding intensity in the shrubs, they may impede vegetation shifts by slowing the establishment and expansion of shrubs in the tundra. Conversely, if they show their lowest feeding intensity within shrub dominated areas, they may accelerate vegetation shifts. We found neither. Feeding intensity varied most among transects and times of day, and least along a tundra-to-shrub vegetation gradient. This suggests that the impacts of squirrels will be heterogeneous - in places responders and in others drivers. We should not be surprised then to see patches of accelerated and impeded vegetation changes in the tundra ecosystem. Some of these patterns may be predictable from the foraging behavior of Arctic ground squirrels.

  2. Greater deciduous shrub abundance extends tundra peak season and increases modeled net CO2 uptake.

    PubMed

    Sweet, Shannan K; Griffin, Kevin L; Steltzer, Heidi; Gough, Laura; Boelman, Natalie T

    2015-06-01

    Satellite studies of the terrestrial Arctic report increased summer greening and longer overall growing and peak seasons since the 1980s, which increases productivity and the period of carbon uptake. These trends are attributed to increasing air temperatures and reduced snow cover duration in spring and fall. Concurrently, deciduous shrubs are becoming increasingly abundant in tundra landscapes, which may also impact canopy phenology and productivity. Our aim was to determine the influence of greater deciduous shrub abundance on tundra canopy phenology and subsequent impacts on net ecosystem carbon exchange (NEE) during the growing and peak seasons in the arctic foothills region of Alaska. We compared deciduous shrub-dominated and evergreen/graminoid-dominated community-level canopy phenology throughout the growing season using the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). We used a tundra plant-community-specific leaf area index (LAI) model to estimate LAI throughout the green season and a tundra-specific NEE model to estimate the impact of greater deciduous shrub abundance and associated shifts in both leaf area and canopy phenology on tundra carbon flux. We found that deciduous shrub canopies reached the onset of peak greenness 13 days earlier and the onset of senescence 3 days earlier compared to evergreen/graminoid canopies, resulting in a 10-day extension of the peak season. The combined effect of the longer peak season and greater leaf area of deciduous shrub canopies almost tripled the modeled net carbon uptake of deciduous shrub communities compared to evergreen/graminoid communities, while the longer peak season alone resulted in 84% greater carbon uptake in deciduous shrub communities. These results suggest that greater deciduous shrub abundance increases carbon uptake not only due to greater leaf area, but also due to an extension of the period of peak greenness, which extends the period of maximum carbon uptake.

  3. Human impacts on the tundra-taiga zone dynamics: the case of the Russian lesotundra.

    PubMed

    Vlassova, T K

    2002-08-01

    The tundra-taiga zone is considered not only as a natural ecotone, but as a unique fringe zone with socioeconomic peculiarities. This holistic approach enables us to analyze several significant types of human impacts (industrial impacts and those associated with renewable resources development, including traditional reindeer herding and human settlements) and their role in the displacement of the lesotundra zone. In Russia, there is much evidence of deforestation and ecosystem degradation in different regions of the lesotundra zone and the northern taiga which borders the lesotundra zone. One indicator of this is that in the Archangelsk region and the Komi Republic, the observed current southern border of the lesotundra zone lies 40-100 km to the south of the southern boundary of the Protection Belt of Pretundra Forests, established in 1959. Human impacts also displace the northern boundary of the lesotundra zone (the boundary with the tundra zone) to the south. As a result, according to published estimations, the total area of human-made tundra and lesotundra stretching from the Kola Peninsula to Chukotka, is c. 470-500,000 km2. The increases in man-made tundra lead to negative consequences for the sociocultural sustainability of the lesotundra zone, a decrease in the quality of life (notably for permanent residents and native people and increases in mortality and depopulation. It cannot be predicted with any certainty that climate warming in the tundra-taiga zone will lead to a northward movement of the boreal forest treeline. We need also to consider the human impacts discussed in this article, which may actually lead to a southward movement of the lesotundra zone.

  4. Surface energy exchanges along a tundra-forest transition and feedbacks to climate

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beringer, J.; Chapin, F. S.; Thompson, Catharine Copass; McGuire, A.D.

    2005-01-01

    Surface energy exchanges were measured in a sequence of five sites representing the major vegetation types in the transition from arctic tundra to forest. This is the major transition in vegetation structure in northern high latitudes. We examined the influence of vegetation structure on the rates of sensible heating and evapotranspiration to assess the potential feedbacks to climate if high-latitude warming were to change the distribution of these vegetation types. Measurements were made at Council on the Seward Peninsula, Alaska, at representative tundra, low shrub, tall shrub, woodland (treeline), and boreal forest sites. Structural differences across the transition from tundra to forest included an increase in the leaf area index (LAI) from 0.52 to 2.76, an increase in canopy height from 0.1 to 6.1 m, and a general increase in canopy complexity. These changes in vegetation structure resulted in a decrease in albedo from 0.19 to 0.10 as well as changes to the partitioning of energy at the surface. Bulk surface resistance to water vapor flux remained virtually constant across sites, apparently because the combined soil and moss evaporation decreased while transpiration increased along the transect from tundra to forest. In general, sites became relatively warmer and drier along the transect with the convective fluxes being increasingly dominated by sensible heating, as evident by an increasing Bowen ratio from 0.94 to 1.22. The difference in growing season average daily sensible heating between tundra and forest was 21 W m-2. Fluxes changed non-linearly along the transition, with both shrubs and trees substantially enhancing heat transfer to the atmosphere. These changes in vegetation structure that increase sensible heating could feed back to enhance warming at local to regional scales. The magnitude of these vegetation effects on potential high-latitude warming is two to three times greater than suggested by previous modeling studies. ?? 2005 Elsevier B.V. All

  5. Atmospheric loading of nitrogen to alpine tundra in the Colorado front range

    SciTech Connect

    Sievering, H.; Burton, D. ); Caine, N. )

    1992-12-01

    Dry deposition of atmospheric nitrogen gas and aerosol species was estimated for the alpine tundra of Niwot Ridge, 3525 m elevation in the Colorado Rockies. Comparisons, for the 4 month long growing season and the remaining 8 months of the year, were made with wet deposition and throughfall incident measurements taken during 1987-1989. Dry deposition of N to the tundra is estimated to be equal to or slightly greater than its wet deposition. During the mid-May to mid-September growing season, atmospheric N deposition is > 1.0 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1] directly from the atmosphere with a similar amount contributed indirectly as NO[sub 3]-N in snowmelt water as a result of dry and wet deposition to the winter snowpack. The total N deposition to Niwot Ridge tundra during the growing season of about 2 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1] may be compared to an earlier measurement of dry plus fog deposition (1-2 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1]) to a subalpine coniferous canopy at Niwot Ridge. Nitrate yields from two small drainage basins at Niwot Ridge match these fluxes. Seven years of record from an unvegetated glacial cirque suggest an average yield from the alpine of 0.7 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1]. The equivalent estimate for a basin with 50% tundra vegetation cover is 0.4 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1]. The contrast in these two estimates of daily averaged N yields for the entire year suggests the retention of nearly 1 mg N m[sup -2] d[sup -1] during the growing season in the more vegetated basin. The sink for this N could be the tundra soil and vegetation where biological activity is often limited by the availability of N. 26 refs., 3 tabs.

  6. Critical review of mercury fates and contamination in the Arctic tundra ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Poissant, Laurier; Zhang, Hong H; Canário, João; Constant, Philippe

    2008-08-01

    Mercury (Hg) contamination in tundra region has raised substantial concerns, especially since the first report of atmospheric mercury depletion events (AMDEs) in the Polar Regions. During the past decade, steady progress has been made in the research of Hg cycling in the Polar Regions. This has generated a unique opportunity to survey the whole Arctic in respect to Hg issue and to find out new discoveries. However, there are still considerable knowledge gaps and debates on the fate of Hg in the Arctic and Antarctica, especially regarding the importance and significance of AMDEs vs. net Hg loadings and other processes that burden Hg in the Arctic. Some studies argued that climate warming since the last century has exerted profound effects on the limnology of High Arctic lakes, including substantial increases in autochthonous primary productivity which increased in sedimentary Hg, whereas some others pointed out the importance of the formation and postdeposition crystallographic history of the snow and ice crystals in determining the fate and concentration of mercury in the cryosphere in addition to AMDEs. Is mercury re-emitted back to the atmosphere after AMDEs? Is Hg methylation effective in the Arctic tundra? Where the sources of MeHg are? What is its fate? Is this stimulated by human made? This paper presents a critical review about the fate of Hg in the Arctic tundra, such as pathways and process of Hg delivery into the Arctic ecosystem; Hg concentrations in freshwater and marine ecosystems; Hg concentrations in terrestrial biota; trophic transfer of Hg and bioaccumulation of Hg through food chain. This critical review of mercury fates and contamination in the Arctic tundra ecosystem is assessing the impacts and potential risks of Hg contamination on the health of Arctic people and the global northern environment by highlighting and "perspectiving" the various mercury processes and concentrations found in the Arctic tundra.

  7. Rheological conditions for emplacement of Ural-Alaskan-type ultramafic complexes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guillou-Frottier, Laurent; Burov, Evgueni; Augé, Thierry; Gloaguen, Eric

    2014-09-01

    Ural-Alaskan- (or Alaskan-) type complexes correspond to a particular class of ultramafic intrusions that attract particular attention due to their deep mantle origin and their platinum-group element (PGE) mineralization. When defined as massifs of dunite-clinopyroxenite, only forty-six complexes are reported in the literature. These large-scale dunite pipe-like structures are rarely isolated and they even can appear in clusters. To better understand genesis of these relatively young (< 460 Ma) complexes, a worldwide compilation has been built, and three categories have been defined: single circular or elliptical bodies, twin bodies with similar shapes, and dismembered dunite bodies. PGE enrichment in Alaskan-type complexes is highest for the second category, where twin bodies are interpreted as horizontal sections of Y-shaped dunite pipes. To constrain mechanical properties of the lithosphere allowing emplacement of the Alaskan-type complexes, the forceful diapiric ascent hypothesis is investigated through numerical thermo-mechanical models. One hundred high resolution experiments accounting for realistic phase changes and softening mechanisms have been performed. The experiments show that with no rheological softening of the host rock and in case of a relatively weak ductile lower crust, the uprising magma tends to spread laterally without reaching the surface. To account for the forceful ascent of deep magmas, it is hence necessary to assume a strong lower crust rheology and strong local softening mechanisms. Besides reproducing the clustered distribution of the weakness zones representing magma pathways, these latter experiments reproduce large-scale pipe-like (cylindrical) structures, Y-shaped and funnel-shaped bodies, and laterally-shifted structures. Interestingly, zones of highest strain rates are located at the bottom parts of the inclined edges of Y-shaped and funnel-shaped bodies. The restricted age range of Alaskan-type complexes (< 460 Ma) would mean

  8. Biosphere/atmosphere CO2 exchange in tundra ecosystems - Community characteristics and relationships with multispectral surface reflectance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Whiting, Gary J.; Bartlett, David S.; Fan, Song-Miao; Bakwin, Peter S.; Wofsy, Steven C.

    1992-01-01

    CO2 exchange rates were measured at selected tundra sites near Bethel, Alaska using portable, climate-controlled, instrumented enclosures. The empirically modeled exchange rate for a representative area of vegetated tundra was 1.2 +/- 1.2 g/sq m/d, compared to a tower-measured exchange over the same time period of 1.1 +.0- 1.2 g/sq m/d. Net exchange in response to varying light levels was compared to wet meadow and dry upland tundra, and to the net exchange measured by the micrometeoroidal tower technique. The multispectral reflectance properties of the sites were measured and related to exchange rates in order to provide a quantitative foundation for the use of satellite remote sensing to monitor biosphere/atmosphere CO2 exchange in the tundra biome.

  9. Biosphere/atmosphere CO[sub 2] exchange in tundra ecosystems - community characteristics and relationships with multispectral surface reflectance

    SciTech Connect

    Whiting, G.J.; Bartlett, D.S.; Fan, Songmiao; Bakwin, P.S.; Wofsy, S.C. New Hampshire Univ., Durham Harvard Univ., Cambridge, MA )

    1992-10-01

    CO2 exchange rates were measured at selected tundra sites near Bethel, Alaska using portable, climate-controlled, instrumented enclosures. The empirically modeled exchange rate for a representative area of vegetated tundra was 1.2 +/- 1.2 g/sq m/d, compared to a tower-measured exchange over the same time period of 1.1 +.0- 1.2 g/sq m/d. Net exchange in response to varying light levels was compared to wet meadow and dry upland tundra, and to the net exchange measured by the micrometeoroidal tower technique. The multispectral reflectance properties of the sites were measured and related to exchange rates in order to provide a quantitative foundation for the use of satellite remote sensing to monitor biosphere/atmosphere CO[sub 2] exchange in the tundra biome. 28 refs.

  10. The effect of a permafrost disturbance on growing-season carbon-dioxide fluxes in a high Arctic tundra ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cassidy, Alison E.; Christen, Andreas; Henry, Gregory H. R.

    2016-04-01

    Soil carbon stored in high-latitude permafrost landscapes is threatened by warming and could contribute significant amounts of carbon to the atmosphere and hydrosphere as permafrost thaws. Thermokarst and permafrost disturbances, especially active layer detachments and retrogressive thaw slumps, are present across the Fosheim Peninsula, Ellesmere Island, Canada. To determine the effects of retrogressive thaw slumps on net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2 in high Arctic tundra, we used two eddy covariance (EC) tower systems to simultaneously and continuously measure CO2 fluxes from a disturbed site and the surrounding undisturbed tundra. During the 32-day measurement period in the 2014 growing season, the undisturbed tundra was a small net sink (NEE = -0.1 g C m-2 d-1); however, the disturbed terrain of the retrogressive thaw slump was a net source (NEE = +0.4 g C m-2 d-1). Over the measurement period, the undisturbed tundra sequestered 3.8 g C m-2, while the disturbed tundra released 12.5 g C m-2. Before full leaf-out in early July, the undisturbed tundra was a small source of CO2 but shifted to a sink for the remainder of the sampling season (July), whereas the disturbed tundra remained a source of CO2 throughout the season. A static chamber system was also used to measure daytime fluxes in the footprints of the two towers, in both disturbed and undisturbed tundra, and fluxes were partitioned into ecosystem respiration (Re) and gross primary production (GPP). Average GPP and Re found in disturbed tundra were smaller (+0.40 µmol m-2 s-1 and +0.55 µmol m-2 s-1, respectively) than those found in undisturbed tundra (+1.19 µmol m-2 s-1 and +1.04 µmol m-2 s-1, respectively). Our measurements indicated clearly that the permafrost disturbance changed the high Arctic tundra system from a sink to a source for CO2 during the majority of the growing season (late June and July).

  11. Changes in tundra vascular plant biomass over thirty years at Imnavait Creek, Alaska, and current ecosystem C and N dynamics.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bret-Harte, M. S.; Shaver, G. R.; Euskirchen, E. S.; Huebner, D. C.; Drew, J. W.; Cherry, J. E.; Edgar, C.

    2015-12-01

    Understanding the magnitude of, and controls over, carbon fluxes in arctic ecosystems is essential for accurate assessment and prediction of their responses to climate change. In 2013, we harvested vegetation and soils in the most common plant community types in source areas for fluxes measured by eddy covariance towers located in three representative Alaska tundra ecosystems along a toposequence (a ridge site of heath tundra and moist non-acidic tundra, a mid-slope site of moist acidic tussock tundra, and a valley bottom site of wet sedge tundra and moist acidic tussock tundra) at Imnavait Creek, Alaska. This harvest sought to relate biomass, production, composition, and C and N stocks in soil and vegetation, to estimates of net ecosystem CO2 exchange obtained by micrometeorological methods. Soil C and N stocks in the seasonally unfrozen soil layer were greatest in the wet sedge community, and least in the heath community. In contrast, moist acidic tussock tundra at the valley bottom site had the highest C and N stocks in vascular plant biomass, while nearby wet sedge tundra had the lowest. Overall, soil C:N ratio was highest in moist acidic tussock tundra at the mid-slope site. Aboveground biomass of vascular plants in moist acidic tundra at the mid-slope site was nearly three times higher than that measured thirty years earlier in vegetation harvests of nearby areas at Imnavait Creek. Other harvests from sites near Toolik Field Station suggest that vascular plant biomass in moist acidic tundra has increased in multiple sites over this time period. Increased biomass in the mid-1990s corresponds with a switch from mostly negative to mostly positive spatially-averaged air temperature anomalies in the climate record. All our sites have been annual net sources of CO2 to the atmosphere over nine years of measurement, but in the last two years, the valley bottom site has been a particularly strong source, due to CO2 losses in fall and winter that correspond with a

  12. The effect of a permafrost disturbance on growing-season carbon-dioxide fluxes in a high Arctic tundra ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cassidy, A. E.; Christen, A.; Henry, G. H. R.

    2015-12-01

    Soil carbon stored in high-latitude permafrost landscapes is threatened by warming, and could contribute significant amounts of carbon to the atmosphere and hydrosphere as permafrost thaws. Permafrost disturbances, especially active layer detachments and retrogressive thaw slumps, have increased in frequency and magnitude across the Fosheim Peninsula, Ellesmere Island, Canada. To determine the effects of retrogressive thaw slumps on net ecosystem exchange (NEE) of CO2 in high Arctic tundra, we used two eddy covariance (EC) tower systems to simultaneously and continuously measure CO2 fluxes from a disturbed site and the surrounding undisturbed tundra. During the 32-day measurement period in the 2014 growing season the undisturbed tundra was a small net sink (NEE = -0.12 g C m-2 d-1); however, the disturbed terrain of the retrogressive thaw slump was a net source (NEE = +0.39 g C m-2 d-1). Over the measurement period, the undisturbed tundra sequestered 3.84 g C m-2, while the disturbed tundra released 12.48 g C m-2. Before full leaf out in early July, the undisturbed tundra was a small source of CO2, but shifted to a sink for the remainder of the sampling season (July), whereas the disturbed tundra remained a source of CO2 throughout the season. A static chamber system was also used to measure fluxes in the footprints of the two towers, in both disturbed and undisturbed tundra, and fluxes were partitioned into ecosystem respiration (Re) and gross primary production (GPP). Average GPP and Re found in disturbed tundra were smaller (+0.41 μmol m-2 s-1 and +0.50 μmol m-2 s-1, respectively) than those found in undisturbed tundra (+1.21 μmol m-2 s-1 and +1.00 μmol m-2 s-1, respectively). Our measurements indicated clearly that the permafrost disturbance changed the high Arctic tundra system from a sink to a source for CO2 during the growing season.

  13. Tsunami Inundation Mapping of Coastal Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Suleimani, E.; Hansen, R.; Marriott, D.; Combellick, R.

    2004-05-01

    Seismic events that occur within the Alaska-Aleutian subduction zone have a high potential for generating both local and Pacific-wide tsunamis. To help mitigate the large risk these earthquakes and tsunamis pose to Alaskan coastal communities, the Alaska Tsunami Modeling Team addresses the problem of predicting runup of tsunami waves using a numerical modeling technique. The model solves nonlinear shallow-water equations with a finite-difference method. Embedded grids of different resolution are employed to increase spatial resolution in the shelf area. Numerical simulations yield runup heights, extent of maximum inundation for chosen tsunami scenarios, depths of inundation on dry land, and maximum velocity current distribution in inundation zones. The communities for inundation mapping are selected in coordination with the Alaska Division of Emergency Services with consideration to location, infrastructure, availability of bathymetric and topographic data, and community involvement.The communities of Homer and Seldovia are located in Kachemak Bay, which is one of the high-priority region for Alaska inundation mapping. We modeled two hypothetical earthquake scenarios as potential sources of tsunami waves that affect the Kachemak Bay communities. They represent both distant and local sources, and we model them using the multiple fault approach. Seward, a community in the Prince William Sound area, suffered an extensive damage and 12 fatalities during the 1964 tsunami. The most destructive waves in Seward were local slump-generated tsunamis. We consider several tsunami scenarios for Seward inundation mapping that include both tectonic and landslide sources.

  14. Relative roles of different-sized herbivores and plant-plant interactions in tall shrub tundra vegetation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ravolainen, Virve; Ims, Rolf; Bårdsen, Bård-Jørgen; Stien, Audun; Kollstrøm, Julie; Lægreid, Eiliv; Bråthen, Kari Anne

    2013-04-01

    Tall shrubs play important roles in the ecology of Arctic tundra ecosystems, including support of high shrub-associated biodiversity and regulation of a range of ecosystem processes. Tall shrub patches and herbaceous vegetation surrounding them often form a two-state vegetation mosaic. Such tall shrub tundra vegetation is an important locus for current vegetation changes in the Arctic. Both abiotic and biotic drivers are known to influence the shrub component. However, although expansion of the shrub state has received much focus lately, relative strengths of the multiple drivers of vegetation state are currently not fully understood. We investigated the role of herbivory relative to temperature and relative to plant-plant interactions, conducting a field survey and experimental studies at large spatial scales in riparian tall shrub tundra in Norway. We found both summer temperatures and summer grazing by reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) to affect tall shrub distribution and expansion potential. Furthermore, we found strong and rapid shrub growth change in response to abundance of key arctic herbivores; small rodents. Finally, we quantified the relative importance of neighboring plants and both herbivore types to recruiting tall shrubs. The previously unforeseen rate at which tall shrub tundra responded to altered herbivore pressures further exemplifies its central role in the tundra ecosystems, promoting tall shrub tundra as a bell-whether of change with respect to both abiotic and biotic drivers. While many of the results clearly relate to herbivory, neighboring plants or climate as drivers, some variation remains unexplained warranting future research focus on this highly dynamic part of the tundra ecosystem. Our results suggest that spatially variable biotic interactions are likely to modify forcing by climate, calling for an ecosystem approach when studying change in tundra ecosystems.

  15. Response of a tundra ecosystem to elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide and CO{sub 2}-induced climate change. Progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Oechel, W.C.

    1992-04-01

    This report presents the progress on the DOE funded project: ``Response of a Tundra Ecosystem to Elevated Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and CO{sub 2}-Induced Climate Change.`` The current funding cycle was initiated on September 1, 1989, to run through August 31, 1992. There was an initial reduction in scope dictated by budget availabilities, primarily manipulations of CO{sub 2}, temperature and nutrients at a wet tundra located at Barrow Alaska. These experiments still need to be done over the mid- to longer term in order to accurately predict, apriori, the effects of climate change on the arctic tundra as well as possible feedbacks. Coordination and cooperation with other agencies was initiated in 1990 and formally proposed in our 1991 renewal at the national and international level and has become an important aspect of the research. To accurately and precisely scale plot and transect measurements to the circumpolar tundra is beyond the scope of the current DOE project. It is possible, however to determine the patterns and controls of CO{sub 2} flux from the current circumpolar arctic tundra with the involvement of additional agencies and governments. Results from the past two years of this project confirm that the arctic has become a source of CO{sub 2} to the atmosphere. This change coincides with recent climatic variation in the arctic, and suggest a positive feedback of arctic ecosystems on atmospheric CO{sub 2} and global change. Measurements along a latitudinal gradient across the north slope of Alaska indicate a loss of carbon from tussock tundra and wet tundra, decreasing in magnitude along a decreasing gradient of temperature but an increasing gradient in soil moisture. These data are in agreement with work done on tussock tundra in 1983{endash}85 and 1987.

  16. Response of a tundra ecosystem to elevated atmospheric carbon dioxide and CO sub 2 -induced climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Oechel, W.C.

    1992-04-01

    This report presents the progress on the DOE funded project: Response of a Tundra Ecosystem to Elevated Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide and CO{sub 2}-Induced Climate Change.'' The current funding cycle was initiated on September 1, 1989, to run through August 31, 1992. There was an initial reduction in scope dictated by budget availabilities, primarily manipulations of CO{sub 2}, temperature and nutrients at a wet tundra located at Barrow Alaska. These experiments still need to be done over the mid- to longer term in order to accurately predict, apriori, the effects of climate change on the arctic tundra as well as possible feedbacks. Coordination and cooperation with other agencies was initiated in 1990 and formally proposed in our 1991 renewal at the national and international level and has become an important aspect of the research. To accurately and precisely scale plot and transect measurements to the circumpolar tundra is beyond the scope of the current DOE project. It is possible, however to determine the patterns and controls of CO{sub 2} flux from the current circumpolar arctic tundra with the involvement of additional agencies and governments. Results from the past two years of this project confirm that the arctic has become a source of CO{sub 2} to the atmosphere. This change coincides with recent climatic variation in the arctic, and suggest a positive feedback of arctic ecosystems on atmospheric CO{sub 2} and global change. Measurements along a latitudinal gradient across the north slope of Alaska indicate a loss of carbon from tussock tundra and wet tundra, decreasing in magnitude along a decreasing gradient of temperature but an increasing gradient in soil moisture. These data are in agreement with work done on tussock tundra in 1983{endash}85 and 1987.

  17. Modeling the spatiotemporal variability in subsurface thermal regimes across a low-relief polygonal tundra landscape

    DOE PAGES

    Kumar, Jitendra; Collier, Nathan; Bisht, Gautam; Mills, Richard T.; Thornton, Peter E.; Iversen, Colleen M.; Romanovsky, Vladimir

    2016-09-27

    Vast carbon stocks stored in permafrost soils of Arctic tundra are under risk of release to the atmosphere under warming climate scenarios. Ice-wedge polygons in the low-gradient polygonal tundra create a complex mosaic of microtopographic features. This microtopography plays a critical role in regulating the fine-scale variability in thermal and hydrological regimes in the polygonal tundra landscape underlain by continuous permafrost. Modeling of thermal regimes of this sensitive ecosystem is essential for understanding the landscape behavior under the current as well as changing climate. Here, we present an end-to-end effort for high-resolution numerical modeling of thermal hydrology at real-world fieldmore » sites, utilizing the best available data to characterize and parameterize the models. We also develop approaches to model the thermal hydrology of polygonal tundra and apply them at four study sites near Barrow, Alaska, spanning across low to transitional to high-centered polygons, representing a broad polygonal tundra landscape. A multiphase subsurface thermal hydrology model (PFLOTRAN) was developed and applied to study the thermal regimes at four sites. Using a high-resolution lidar digital elevation model (DEM), microtopographic features of the landscape were characterized and represented in the high-resolution model mesh. The best available soil data from field observations and literature were utilized to represent the complex heterogeneous subsurface in the numerical model. Simulation results demonstrate the ability of the developed modeling approach to capture – without recourse to model calibration – several aspects of the complex thermal regimes across the sites, and provide insights into the critical role of polygonal tundra microtopography in regulating the thermal dynamics of the carbon-rich permafrost soils. Moreover, areas of significant disagreement between model results and observations highlight the importance of field

  18. Tundra fire alters stream water chemistry and benthic invertebrate communities, North Slope, Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, A. R.; Bowden, W. B.; Kling, G. W.; Schuett, E.; Kostrzewski, J. M.; Kolden Abatzoglou, C.; Findlay, R. H.

    2010-12-01

    Increased fire frequency and severity are potentially important consequences of climate change in high latitude ecosystems. The 2007 Anaktuvuk River fire, which burned from July until October, is the largest recorded tundra fire from Alaska's north slope (≈1,000 km2). The immediate effects of wildfire on water chemistry and biotic assemblages in tundra streams are heretofore unknown. We hypothesized that a tundra fire would increase inorganic nutrient inputs to P-limited tundra streams, increasing primary production and altering benthic macroinvertebrate community structure. We examined linkages among: 1) percentage of riparian zone and overall watershed vegetation burned, 2) physical, chemical and biological stream characteristics, and 3) macroinvertebrate communities in streams draining burned and unburned watersheds during the summers of 2008 and 2009. Streams in burned watersheds contained higher mean concentrations of soluble reactive phosphorus (SRP), ammonium (NH4+), and dissolved organic carbon (DOC). In contrast, stream nitrate (NO3-) concentrations were lower in burned watersheds. The net result was that the tundra fire did not affect concentrations of dissolved inorganic nitrogen (NH4+ + NO3-). In spite of increased SRP, benthic chlorophyll-a biomass was not elevated. Macroinvertebrate abundances were 1.5 times higher in streams draining burned watersheds; Chironomidae midges, Nematodes, and Nemoura stoneflies showed the greatest increases in abundance. Multivariate multiple regression identified environmental parameters associated with the observed changes in the macroinvertebrate communities. Since we identified stream latitude as a significant predictor variable, latitude was included in the model as a covariate. After removing the variation associated with latitude, 67.3 % of the variance in macroinvertebrate community structure was explained by a subset of 7 predictor variables; DOC, conductivity, mean temperature, NO3-, mean discharge, SRP and NH

  19. Impact of disability and other physical health issues on academic outcomes among American Indian and Alaskan Native college students: an exploratory analysis.

    PubMed

    Patterson Silver Wolf Adelv Unegv Waya, David A; Vanzile-Tamsen, Carol; Black, Jessica; Billiot, Shanondora M; Tovar, Molly

    2015-01-01

    This study investigated whether self-identified disabilities among American Indian and Alaskan Native college students impact academic performance and persistence to graduation and explored the differences in health and academic grades between American Indian and Alaskan Native students and students of other racial and ethnic identities using the National College Health Assessment. Findings indicate that American Indian or Alaskan Native students have significantly lower grades than White and Asian students, and American Indian and Alaskan Native women report the highest incidence of health problems of any demographic group. Exploratory results point to future research to determine the full impact of disabilities and poor health on academic success.

  20. REPETITIVE DIGITAL NOAA-AVHRR DATA FOR ALASKAN ENGINEERING AND SCIENTIFIC APPLICATIONS.

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Christie, William M.; Pawlowski, Robert J.; Fleming, Michael D.

    1986-01-01

    Selected digitally enhanced NOAA - Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) images taken by the NOAA 6, 7, 8 and 9 Polar Orbiting Satellites demonstrate the capability and application of repetitive low-resolution satellite data to Alaska's engineering and science community. Selected cloud-free visible and thermal infrared images are enhanced to depict distinct oceanographic and geologic processes along Alaska's west coast and adjacent seas. Included are the advance of the Bering Sea ice field, transport of Yukon River sediment into Norton Sound, and monitoring of plume trajectories from the Mount Augustine volcanic eruptions. Presented illustrations are representative of the 94 scenes in a cooperative USGS EROS/NOAA Alaskan AVHRR Digital Archive. This paper will discuss the cooperative efforts in establishing the first year data set and identifying Alaskan applications.

  1. Preliminary evidence for the involvement of budding bacteria in the origin of Alaskan placer gold

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Watterson, J.R.

    1992-01-01

    Lacelike networks of micrometre-size filiform gold associated wtih Alaskan placer gold particles are interpreted as low-temperature pseudomorphs of a Pedomicrobium-like budding bacterium. Submicron reproductive structures (hyphae) and other morphological features similar to those of Pedomicrobium manganicum occur as detailed three-dimensional facsimiles in high purity gold in and on placer gold particles from Lillian Creek, Alaska. In a scanning electron microscope survey, the majority of gold particles at nine Alaskan placer deposits appear to include gold that has accumulated chemically at low temperatures in and on the cells of P. manganicum. Similar bacterioform gold from a Paleozoic deposit in China and from the Precambrian Witwatersrand deposit in South Africa may indicate that bacterioform gold is widespread. -Author

  2. The dynamics of the tundra-taiga boundary: an overview and suggested coordinated and integrated approach to research.

    PubMed

    Callaghan, Terry V; Crawford, Robert M M; Eronen, Matti; Hofgaard, Annika; Payette, Serge; Rees, W Gareth; Skre, Oddvar; Sveinbjörnsson, Bjartmar; Vlassova, Tatiana K; Werkman, Ben R

    2002-08-01

    The tundra-taiga boundary stretches for more than 13,400 km around the Northern Hemisphere and is probably the Earth's greatest vegetation transition. The trees that define the boundary have been sensitive to climate changes in the past and models of future vegetation distribution suggest a rapid and dramatic invasion of the tundra by the taiga. Such changes would generate both positive and negative feedbacks to the climate system and the balance could result in a net warming effect. However, the boundary is becoming increasingly affected by human activities that remove trees and degrade forest-tundra into tundra-like areas. Because of the vastness and remoteness of the tundra-taiga boundary, and of methodological problems such as problematic definitions and lack of standardized methods to record the location and characteristics of the ecotone, a project group has been established under the auspices of the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC). This paper summarizes the initial output of the group and focuses on our uncertainties in understanding the current processes at the tundra-taiga boundary and the conflicts between model predictions of changes in the location of the boundary and contrasting recently observed changes due to human activities. Finally, we present recommendations for a coordinated international approach to the problem and invite the international community to join us in reducing the uncertainties about the dynamics of the ecotone and their consequences.

  3. The impact of climate change on ecosystem carbon dynamics at the Scandinavian mountain birch forest-tundra heath ecotone.

    PubMed

    Sjögersten, Sofie; Wookey, Philip A

    2009-02-01

    Changes in temperature and moisture resulting from climate change are likely to strongly modify the ecosystem carbon sequestration capacity in high-latitude areas, both through vegetation shifts and via direct warming effects on photosynthesis and decomposition. This paper offers a synthesis of research addressing the potential impacts of climate warming on soil processes and carbon fluxes at the forest-tundra ecotone in Scandinavia. Our results demonstrated higher rates of organic matter decomposition in mountain birch forest than in tundra heath soils, with markedly shallower organic matter horizons in the forest. Field and laboratory experiments suggest that increased temperatures are likely to increase CO2 efflux from both tundra and forest soil providing moisture availability does not become limiting for the decomposition process. Furthermore, colonization of tundra heath by mountain birch forest would increase rates of decomposition, and thus CO2 emissions, from the tundra heath soils, which currently store substantial amounts of potentially labile carbon. Mesic soils underlying both forest and tundra heath are currently weak sinks of atmospheric methane, but the strength of this sink could be increased with climate warming and/or drying.

  4. [Characteristics of erythrocyte lipids in blood of tundra voles (Microtus oeconomus Pall.) inhabiting areas with increased natural radioactivity].

    PubMed

    Shevchenko, O G; Shuktomova, I I; Shishkina, L N

    2011-01-01

    Interrelations between the lipid characteristics of the blood erythrocytes and 226Ra accumulation in the body of tundra voles (Microtus oeconomus Pall.) inhabiting areas with different levels of the radiation background were investigated. It is shown that the ratio of the phospholipid (PL) fractions which cause the blood erythrocyte structure depends on the phase of the population cycle, as well as on the sex and age of tundra voles. The statistically significant interrelation between lysoforms and the sphingomielin content has been revealed in the blood erythrocyte PL of tundra voles; its scale somewhat differs for the animals from the reference and Ra areas. The peroxide concentration in the blood erythrocyte lipids of tundra voles from the Ra area exceeded the control values in all mature groups of the animals trapped at the depression phase of the population density. The 226Ra content in the bodies of the tundra voles which were trapped in the Ra area at the increased phase of the population cycle is for certain higher than that for the animals from the reference area. Interrelations between the lipid peroxidation parameters in the blood erythrocytes and the body 226Ra content for separate sex-age groups of tundra voles have been revealed.

  5. Clinical pathology and assessment of pathogen exposure in southern and Alaskan sea otters.

    PubMed

    Hanni, Krista D; Mazet, Jonna A K; Gulland, Frances M D; Estes, James; Staedler, Michelle; Murray, Michael J; Miller, Melissa; Jessup, David A

    2003-10-01

    The southern sea otter (Enhydra lutris nereis) population in California (USA) and the Alaskan sea otter (E. lutris kenyoni) population in the Aleutian Islands (USA) chain have recently declined. In order to evaluate disease as a contributing factor to the declines, health assessments of these two sea otter populations were conducted by evaluating hematologic and/or serum biochemical values and exposure to six marine and terrestrial pathogens using blood collected during ongoing studies from 1995 through 2000. Samples from 72 free-ranging Alaskan, 78 free-ranging southern, and (for pathogen exposure only) 41 debilitated southern sea otters in rehabilitation facilities were evaluated and compared to investigate regional differences. Serum chemistry and hematology values did not indicate a specific disease process as a cause for the declines. Statistically significant differences were found between free-ranging adult southern and Alaskan population mean serum levels of creatinine kinase, alkaline phosphatase, alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, calcium, cholesterol, creatinine, glucose, phosphorous, total bilirubin, blood urea nitrogen, and sodium. These were likely due to varying parasite loads, contaminant exposures, and physiologic or nutrition statuses. No free-ranging sea otters had signs of disease at capture, and prevalences of exposure to calicivirus, Brucella spp., and Leptospira spp. were low. The high prevalence (35%) of antibodies to Toxoplasma gondii in free-ranging southern sea otters, lack of antibodies to this parasite in Alaskan sea otters, and the pathogen's propensity to cause mortality in southern sea otters suggests that this parasite may be important to sea otter population dynamics in California but not in Alaska. The evidence for exposure to pathogens of public health importance (e.g., Leptospira spp., T. gondii) in the southern sea otter population, and the naïveté of both populations to other pathogens (e.g., morbillivirus

  6. Clinical pathology and assessment of pathogen exposure in southern and Alaskan sea otters

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hanni, K.D.; Mazet, J.A.K.; Gulland, F.M.D.; Estes, James; Staedler, M.; Murray, M.J.; Miller, M.; Jessup, David A.

    2003-01-01

    The southern sea otter (Enhydra lutris nereis) population in California (USA) and the Alaskan sea otter (E. lutris kenyoni) population in the Aleutian Islands (USA) chain have recently declined. In order to evaluate disease as a contributing factor to the declines, health assessments of these two sea otter populations were conducted by evaluating hematologic and/or serum biochemical values and exposure to six marine and terrestrial pathogens using blood collected during ongoing studies from 1995 through 2000. Samples from 72 free-ranging Alaskan, 78 free-ranging southern, and (for pathogen exposure only) 41 debilitated southern sea otters in rehabilitation facilities were evaluated and compared to investigate regional differences. Serum chemistry and hematology values did not indicate a specific disease process as a cause for the declines. Statistically significant differences were found between free-ranging adult southern and Alaskan population mean serum levels of creatinine kinase, alkaline phosphatase, alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, calcium, cholesterol, creatinine, glucose, phosphorous, total bilirubin, blood urea nitrogen, and sodium. These were likely due to varying parasite loads, contaminant exposures, and physiologic or nutrition statuses. No free-ranging sea otters had signs of disease at capture, and prevalences of exposure to calicivirus, Brucella spp., and Leptospira spp. were low. The high prevalence (35%) of antibodies to Toxoplasma gondii in free-ranging southern sea otters, lack of antibodies to this parasite in Alaskan sea otters, and the pathogen's propensity to cause mortality in southern sea otters suggests that this parasite may be important to sea otter population dynamics in California but not in Alaska. The evidence for exposure to pathogens of public health importance (e.g., Leptospira spp., T. gondii) in the southern sea otter population, and the nai??vete?? of both populations to other pathogens (e

  7. Characteristics and petrogenesis of Alaskan-type ultramafic-gabbro intrusions, southeastern Alaska

    SciTech Connect

    Loney, R.A. ); Himmelberg, G.R. Univ. of Missouri, Columbia, MO )

    1993-04-01

    Alaskan-type ultramafic-gabbro intrusions occur along a belt that extends from Duke Island to Klukwan in southeastern Alaska and fall into two age groups, 400 to 440 Ma and 100 to 110 Ma. Most of the smaller bodies are magnetite-bearing hornblende clinopyroxenite; the larger ones consist of dunite, wehrlite, olivine clinopyroxenite, with some gabbro, in addition to hornblende clinopyroxenite and hornblendite. Textural, mineralogical, and chemical characteristics of the Alaskan-type ultramafic bodies indicate that they originated by fractional crystallization of a basaltic magma and accumulation in a crustal magma chamber. The Al[sub 2]O[sub 3] content of clinopyroxene shows a marked enrichment with differentiation, suggesting crystallization from progressively more hydrous melts like those characteristics of arc magmas. REE abundance levels and patterns are markedly similar for given rock units in all the bodies studied suggesting that all the bodies were derived by differentiation of closely similar parent magmas under near identical conditions. The exact composition of the primary melt is uncertain but the authors' preferred interpretation is that the parental magma of most Alaskan-type bodies was a subalkaline hydrous basalt. The striking similarity between the REE abundance levels and patterns of the Alaskan-type clinopyroxenites and gabbros, and the clinopyroxenite xenoliths and plutonic gabbros associated with Aleutian Island Arc volcanism, further suggests that the primary magma was probably a hydrous olivine basalt similar to the primary magma proposed for the Aleutian arc lavas. The mineral chemistry and phase equilibria of the ultramafic bodies suggest that they crystallized in magma chambers at depths greater than about 9 km. Except for the Duke Island body, which has sedimentary structures and shows evidence of ubiquitous current activity, most of the other bodies appear to have accumulated under static conditions.

  8. Projected Duration of the Sea-Ice-Free Season in the Future Alaskan Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, M.; Overland, J. E.

    2014-12-01

    The change in the Arctic climate is fast and broad. Among many changes that have been observed, the reduction of sea ice coverage has been one of the most significant factors. Continued reduction in sea ice cover will probably result in longer open water duration, which is important for the shipping industry, marine mammals as well as other component of the local ecosystem. In this study we are to assess future sea ice conditions, particularly the length of open water duration in the Alaskan Arctic over the next few decades using the latest coupled climate models (CMIP5). The Alaskan Arctic, including the Chukchi and the Beaufort Sea, has been a major region of summer sea ice retreat since 2007. Based on the mean of 12 climate models, for the region north of the Bering Strait (70° N), future open-water duration may extend from a current 3-4 months to around five months by 2050. It is about one month shorter along the same latitude over the Beaufort Sea. The difference in the length of ice-free season between the north and the south will remain, but will be smaller in the 21st century compared with current condition. Open-water duration in the Alaskan Arctic expands quickly in these models over the next decades, in contrast to model under-predictions of sea ice loss for the summer minimum over the Arctic wide domain. Uncertainty is generally ±one month estimated from the range of model results. Continued increases in open-water duration over the next two decades will impact regional economic access and potentially alter ecosystems, yet we need to keep in mind that from December through May most of the northern Alaskan Arctic will remain sea ice covered into the second half of the century.

  9. Juvenile laryngeal paralysis in three Siberian husky x Alaskan malamute puppies.

    PubMed

    Polizopoulou, Z S; Koutinas, A F; Papadopoulos, G C; Saridomichelakis, M N

    2003-11-15

    Three three-month-old Siberian husky x Alaskan malamute crossbreds had suffered episodic inspiratory dyspnoea and stridor for four to eight weeks and their endurance had decreased. In two of them bilateral, and in the other unilateral, laryngeal paralysis was diagnosed by laryngoscopy. In the nucleus ambiguus of the dogs there was a depletion of motor neurons, neuronal degeneration and mild gliosis, but there were no lesions in the root and peripheral segments of the recurrent laryngeal nerves.

  10. Viability of the Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dunham, Kylee; Grand, James B.

    2016-10-11

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is tasked with setting objective and measurable criteria for delisting species or populations listed under the Endangered Species Act. Determining the acceptable threshold for extinction risk for any species or population is a challenging task, particularly when facing marked uncertainty. The Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders (Polysticta stelleri) was listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act in 1997 because of a perceived decline in abundance throughout their nesting range and geographic isolation from the Russian breeding population. Previous genetic studies and modeling efforts, however, suggest that there may be dispersal from the Russian breeding population. Additionally, evidence exists of population level nonbreeding events. Research was conducted to estimate population viability of the Alaskan breeding population of Steller’s eiders, using both an open and closed model of population process for this threatened population. Projections under a closed population model suggest this population has a 100 percent probability of extinction within 42 years. Projections under an open population model suggest that with immigration there is no probability of permanent extinction. Because of random immigration process and nonbreeding behavior, however, it is likely that this population will continue to be present in low and highly variable numbers on the breeding grounds in Alaska. Monitoring the winter population, which includes both Russian and Alaskan breeding birds, may offer a more comprehensive indication of population viability.

  11. Task 27 -- Alaskan low-rank coal-water fuel demonstration project

    SciTech Connect

    1995-10-01

    Development of coal-water-fuel (CWF) technology has to-date been predicated on the use of high-rank bituminous coal only, and until now the high inherent moisture content of low-rank coal has precluded its use for CWF production. The unique feature of the Alaskan project is the integration of hot-water-drying (HWD) into CWF technology as a beneficiation process. Hot-water-drying is an EERC developed technology unavailable to the competition that allows the range of CWF feedstock to be extended to low-rank coals. The primary objective of the Alaskan Project, is to promote interest in the CWF marketplace by demonstrating the commercial viability of low-rank coal-water-fuel (LRCWF). While commercialization plans cannot be finalized until the implementation and results of the Alaskan LRCWF Project are known and evaluated, this report has been prepared to specifically address issues concerning business objectives for the project, and outline a market development plan for meeting those objectives.

  12. Experimentally substantiated equations of the interrelations between the agrochemical characteristics of tundra soils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasil'Evskaya, V. D.; Grigor'ev, V. Ya.; Pogozhev, E. Yu.; Pogozheva, E. A.

    2011-01-01

    The detailed analysis of the results obtained in the course of experimental studying of the tundra soils in Western and Central Siberia and in the European part of Russia has revealed the general regularities of the variability and the relationships between the agrochemical and other properties of the soils. On the basis of these data, the calculated methods for the assessment of a complex of agrochemical properties of natural and disturbed tundra soils under different moisture and thermal conditions were elaborated. Among the properties analyzed, the following are important for plant growth: the acidity and the content of humus, organic carbon, total nitrogen, mobile phosphorus, nitrogen, and potassium. The relationships between the soil agro-chemical properties and the plant productivity allowed applying them for the quantitative evaluation of the environmental threat of the soil-plant cover's degradation because of different predominantly mechanical disturbances.

  13. InSAR detects increase in surface subsidence caused by an Arctic tundra fire

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Lin; Jafarov, Elchin E.; Schaefer, Kevin M.; Jones, Benjamin M.; Zebker, Howard A.; Williams, Christopher A.; Rogan, John; Zhang, Tingjun

    2014-06-01

    Wildfire is a major disturbance in the Arctic tundra and boreal forests, having a significant impact on soil hydrology, carbon cycling, and permafrost dynamics. This study explores the use of the microwave Interferometric Synthetic Aperture Radar (InSAR) technique to map and quantify ground surface subsidence caused by the Anaktuvuk River fire on the North Slope of Alaska. We detected an increase of up to 8 cm of thaw-season ground subsidence after the fire, which is due to a combination of thickened active layer and permafrost thaw subsidence. Our results illustrate the effectiveness and potential of using InSAR to quantify fire impacts on the Arctic tundra, especially in regions underlain by ice-rich permafrost. Our study also suggests that surface subsidence is a more comprehensive indicator of fire impacts on ice-rich permafrost terrain than changes in active layer thickness alone.

  14. [Methanotrophic communities in the soils of Russian northern taiga and subarctic tundra].

    PubMed

    Kaliuzhnaia, M G; Makutina, V A; Rusakova, T G; Nikitin, D V; Khmelenina, V N; Dmitriev, V V; Trotsenko, Iu A

    2002-01-01

    The PCR analysis of DNA extracted from soil samples taken in Russian northern taiga and subarctic tundra showed that the DNA extracts contain genes specific to methanotrophic bacteria, i.e., the mmoX gene encoding the conserved alpha-subunit of the hydroxylase component of soluble methane monooxygenase, the pmoA gene encoding the alpha-subunit of particulate methane monooxygenase, and the mxaF gene encoding the alpha-subunit of methanol dehydrogenase. PCR analysis with group-specific primers also showed that methanotrophic bacteria in the northern taiga and subarctic tundra soils are essentially represented by the type I genera Methylobacter, Methylomonas, Methylosphaera, and Methylomicrobium and that some soil samples contain type II methanotrophs close to members of the genera Methylosinus and Methylocystis. The electron microscopic examination of enrichment cultures obtained from the soil samples confirmed the presence of methanotrophic bacteria in the ecosystems studied and showed that the methanotrophs contain only small amounts of intracytoplasmic membranes.

  15. AmeriFlux US-ICt Imnavait Creek Watershed Tussock Tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Bret-Harte, Syndonia; Euskirchen, Eugenie; Shaver, Gaius

    2016-01-01

    This is the AmeriFlux version of the carbon flux data for the site US-ICt Imnavait Creek Watershed Tussock Tundra. Site Description - The Imnavait Creek Watershed Tussock Tundra (Biocomplexity Station) is located near Imnavait Creek in Alaska, north of the Brooks Range in the Kuparuk basin near Lake Toolik and the Toolik Field Station. The Kuparuk River has its headwaters in the Brooks Range and drains through northern Alaska into the Arctic Ocean. Within these headwaters lies the Imnavait basin at an average elevation of 930 m. Water tracks run down the hill in parallel zones with a spacing of approximately 10 m. The Biocomplexity Station was deployed in 2004, and it has been in operation during the melt seasons ever since.

  16. AmeriFlux US-ICh Imnavait Creek Watershed Heath Tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Bret-Harte, Syndonia; Euskirchen, Eugenie; Shaver, Gaius

    2016-01-01

    This is the AmeriFlux version of the carbon flux data for the site US-ICh Imnavait Creek Watershed Heath Tundra. Site Description - The Imnavait Creek Watershed Heath Tundra (Ridge Station) is located near Imnavait Creek in Alaska, north of the Brooks Range in the Kuparuk basin near Lake Toolik and the Toolik Field Station. The Kuparuk River has its headwaters in the Brooks Range and drains through northern Alaska into the Arctic Ocean. Within these headwaters lies the Imnavait basin at an average elevation of 930 m. Water tracks run down the hill in parallel zones with a spacing of approximately 10 m. The Ridge Station was deployed at the end of Summer 2007.

  17. AmeriFlux US-ICs Imnavait Creek Watershed Wet Sedge Tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Bret-Harte, Syndonia; Euskirchen, Eugenie; Shaver, Gaius

    2016-01-01

    This is the AmeriFlux version of the carbon flux data for the site US-ICs Imnavait Creek Watershed Wet Sedge Tundra. Site Description - The Imnavait Creek Watershed Wet Sedge Tundra (Fen Station) is located near Imnavait Creek in Alaska, north of the Brooks Range in the Kuparuk basin near Lake Toolik and the Toolik Field Station. The Kuparuk River has its headwaters in the Brooks Range and drains through northern Alaska into the Arctic Ocean. Within these headwaters lies the Imnavait basin at an average elevation of 930 m. Water tracks run down the hill in parallel zones with a spacing of approximately 10 m. The Fen Station was deployed at the end of Summer 2007.

  18. The 1977 tundra fire in the Kokolik River area of Alaska

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1981-01-01

    Presumably caused by lightning, a large fire occurred due east of Point Lay several kilometers southwest of the Kokolik River, the farthest north a fire was ever fought by Bureau of Land Management personnel in Alaska. The progress and area extent of the fire were determined by analysis of LANDSAT MSS band 5 and 7 imagery. Low altitude observations from helicopter showed the fire burned a range of vegetation and relief types which included low polygonized and upland tussock tundras. The burned area appeared wetter on the surface than the unburned area, due to a lack of moisture absorbing organic matter and the possible release of moisture from the deeper thawed zone. Suggestions for future investigations of the effects of fire on tundra and permafrost terrains are discussed.

  19. Intense, natural pollution affects Arctic tundra vegetation at the Smoking Hills, Canada

    SciTech Connect

    Freedman, B. ); Zobens, V.; Hutchinson, T.C.; Gizyn, W.I. )

    1990-04-01

    Long-term, natural emissions of sulfur dioxide and acidic aerosols have had an impact on remote tundra at the Smoking Hills. The emissions have caused plant damage by SO{sub 2} toxicity, and have severely acidified soil and freshwater. At the most intensively fumigated locations closest to the sources of emission, pollution stresses have devegetated the terrestrial ecosystem. The first plants that are encountered along a spatial gradient of decreasing pollution stress are Artemisia tilesii and Arctagrostis latifolia, which dominate a characteristic, pollution-tolerant community. Farther away at moderately polluted sites there are mixed communities with floristic elements of both fumigated and reference, unfumigated tundra. This pattern of ecosystem response to a concatenation of stresses caused by natural air and soil pollution is qualitatively similar to the damage that occurs in the vicinity of anthropogenic point sources of air pollution, such as smelters.

  20. Controls over nutrient flow through plants and microbes in Arctic tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Chapin, F.S. III.

    1991-01-01

    During 1990, we worked primarily on two major projects. The first was a field study of {sup 15}N partitioning between plants and microbes at Imnavait Creek. {sup 15}N was absorbed faster on the tundra than in temperate climates, and release of labeled nitrogen occurs much more slowly, indicating a slow turnover. The second major project was a model of nutrient uptake by {und Eriophorum vaginatum}. The major effort for 1991 will be on continued model development to match model predictions with results of current field work. Also scheduled for 1991 is completion of field work with {und E. vaginatum} and related soils. This should provide validation of the applicability of R4D concepts to anthropogenic disturbances in tundra. 5 figs. (MHB)