The Arctic in the Anthropocene

Emerging Research Questions

Author: National Research Council,Division on Earth and Life Studies,Polar Research Board,Committee on Emerging Research Questions in the Arctic

Publisher: National Academies Press

ISBN: 0309301866

Category: Nature

Page: 224

View: 1253

Once ice-bound, difficult to access, and largely ignored by the rest of the world, the Arctic is now front and center in the midst of many important questions facing the world today. Our daily weather, what we eat, and coastal flooding are all interconnected with the future of the Arctic. The year 2012 was an astounding year for Arctic change. The summer sea ice volume smashed previous records, losing approximately 75 percent of its value since 1980 and half of its areal coverage. Multiple records were also broken when 97 percent of Greenland's surface experienced melt conditions in 2012, the largest melt extent in the satellite era. Receding ice caps in Arctic Canada are now exposing land surfaces that have been continuously ice covered for more than 40,000 years. What happens in the Arctic has far-reaching implications around the world. Loss of snow and ice exacerbates climate change and is the largest contributor to expected global sea level rise during the next century. Ten percent of the world's fish catches comes from Arctic and sub-Arctic waters. The U.S. Geological Survey estimated that up to 13 percent of the world's remaining oil reserves are in the Arctic. The geologic history of the Arctic may hold vital clues about massive volcanic eruptions and the consequent release of massive amount of coal fly ash that is thought to have caused mass extinctions in the distant past. How will these changes affect the rest of Earth? What research should we invest in to best understand this previously hidden land, manage impacts of change on Arctic communities, and cooperate with researchers from other nations? The Arctic in the Anthropocene reviews research questions previously identified by Arctic researchers, and then highlights the new questions that have emerged in the wake of and expectation of further rapid Arctic change, as well as new capabilities to address them. This report is meant to guide future directions in U.S. Arctic research so that research is targeted on critical scientific and societal questions and conducted as effectively as possible. The Arctic in the Anthropocene identifies both a disciplinary and a cross-cutting research strategy for the next 10 to 20 years, and evaluates infrastructure needs and collaboration opportunities. The climate, biology, and society in the Arctic are changing in rapid, complex, and interactive ways. Understanding the Arctic system has never been more critical; thus, Arctic research has never been more important. This report will be a resource for institutions, funders, policy makers, and students. Written in an engaging style, The Arctic in the Anthropocene paints a picture of one of the last unknown places on this planet, and communicates the excitement and importance of the discoveries and challenges that lie ahead.

Arctic Matters:

The Global Connection to Changes in the Arctic

Author: Polar Research Board,Division on Earth and Life Studies,National Research Council

Publisher: National Academies Press

ISBN: 0309371619

Category: Nature

Page: 32

View: 9410

Viewed in satellite images as a jagged white coat draped over the top of the globe, the high Arctic appears distant and isolated. But even if you don't live there, don't do business there, and will never travel there, you are closer to the Arctic than you think. Arctic Matters: The Global Connection to Changes in the Arctic is a new educational resource produced by the Polar Research Board of the National Research Council (NRC). It draws upon a large collection of peer-reviewed NRC reports and other national and international reports to provide a brief, reader-friendly primer on the complex ways in which the changes currently affecting the Arctic and its diverse people, resources, and environment can, in turn, affect the entire globe. Topics in the booklet include how climate changes currently underway in the Arctic are a driver for global sea-level rise, offer new prospects for natural resource extraction, and have rippling effects through the world's weather, climate, food supply and economy.

Seasonal-to-Decadal Predictions of Arctic Sea Ice:

Challenges and Strategies

Author: Division on Earth and Life Studies,National Research Council,Polar Research Board,Committee on the Future of Arctic Sea Ice Research in Support of Seasonal-to-Decadal Predictions

Publisher: National Academies Press

ISBN: 0309265266

Category: Nature

Page: 80

View: 2560

Recent well documented reductions in the thickness and extent of Arctic sea ice cover, which can be linked to the warming climate, are affecting the global climate system and are also affecting the global economic system as marine access to the Arctic region and natural resource development increase. Satellite data show that during each of the past six summers, sea ice cover has shrunk to its smallest in three decades. The composition of the ice is also changing, now containing a higher fraction of thin first-year ice instead of thicker multi-year ice. Understanding and projecting future sea ice conditions is important to a growing number of stakeholders, including local populations, natural resource industries, fishing communities, commercial shippers, marine tourism operators, national security organizations, regulatory agencies, and the scientific research community. However, gaps in understanding the interactions between Arctic sea ice, oceans, and the atmosphere, along with an increasing rate of change in the nature and quantity of sea ice, is hampering accurate predictions. Although modeling has steadily improved, projections by every major modeling group failed to predict the record breaking drop in summer sea ice extent in September 2012. Establishing sustained communication between the user, modeling, and observation communities could help reveal gaps in understanding, help balance the needs and expectations of different stakeholders, and ensure that resources are allocated to address the most pressing sea ice data needs. Seasonal-to-Decadal Predictions of Arctic Sea Ice: Challenges and Strategies explores these topics.

Offshore Oil and Gas Development in the Arctic under International Law

Risk and Responsibility

Author: Rachael Lorna Johnstone

Publisher: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers

ISBN: 9004283390

Category: Law

Page: 346

View: 8805

Offshore Oil and Gas Development in the Arctic under International Law explores the international legal framework for hydrocarbon development in the marine Arctic.

Arctic Sustainability Research

Past, Present and Future

Author: Andrey N Petrov

Publisher: Taylor & Francis

ISBN: 1351614630

Category:

Page: N.A

View: 1430

The Arctic is one of the world's regions most affected by cultural, socio-economic, environmental, and climatic changes. Over the last two decades, scholars, policymakers, extractive industries, governments, intergovernmental forums, and non-governmental organizations have turned their attention to the Arctic, its peoples, resources, and to the challenges and benefits of impending transformations. Arctic sustainability is an issue of increasing concern as well as the resilience and adaptation of Arctic societies to changing conditions. This book offers key insights into the history, current state of knowledge and the future of sustainability, and sustainable development research in the Arctic. Written by an international, interdisciplinary team of experts, it presents a comprehensive progress report on Arctic sustainability research. It identifies key knowledge gaps and provides salient recommendations for prioritizing research in the next decade. Arctic Sustainability Research will appeal to researchers, academics, and policymakers interested in sustainability science and the practices of sustainable development, as well as those working in polar studies, climate change, political geography, and the history of science.

Arctic Matters:

The Global Connection to Changes in the Arctic

Author: Polar Research Board,Division on Earth and Life Studies,National Research Council

Publisher: National Academies Press

ISBN: 0309371619

Category: Nature

Page: 32

View: 1913

Viewed in satellite images as a jagged white coat draped over the top of the globe, the high Arctic appears distant and isolated. But even if you don't live there, don't do business there, and will never travel there, you are closer to the Arctic than you think. Arctic Matters: The Global Connection to Changes in the Arctic is a new educational resource produced by the Polar Research Board of the National Research Council (NRC). It draws upon a large collection of peer-reviewed NRC reports and other national and international reports to provide a brief, reader-friendly primer on the complex ways in which the changes currently affecting the Arctic and its diverse people, resources, and environment can, in turn, affect the entire globe. Topics in the booklet include how climate changes currently underway in the Arctic are a driver for global sea-level rise, offer new prospects for natural resource extraction, and have rippling effects through the world's weather, climate, food supply and economy.

Frontiers in Polar Biology in the Genomics Era

Author: Committee on Frontiers in Polar Biology,National Research Council,Division on Earth and Life Studies,Polar Research Board

Publisher: National Academies Press

ISBN: 0309087279

Category: Science

Page: 186

View: 5314

As we enter the twenty-first century, the polar biological sciences stand well poised to address numerous important issues, many of which were unrecognized as little as 10 years ago. From the effects of global warming on polar organisms to the potential for life in subglacial Lake Vostok, the opportunities to advance our understanding of polar ecosystems are unprecedented. The era of "genome-enabled" biology is upon us, and new technologies will allow us to examine polar biological questions of unprecedented scope and to do so with extraordinary depth and precision. Frontiers in Polar Biology in the Genomic Revolution highlights research areas in polar biology that can benefit from genomic technologies and assesses the impediments to the conduct of polar genomic research. It also emphasizes the importance of ancillary technologies to the successful application of genomic technologies to polar studies. It recommends the development of a new initiative in polar genome sciences that emphasizes collaborative multidisciplinary research to facilitate genome analyses of polar organisms and coordinate research efforts.

SpaceTime of the Imperial

Author: Holt Meyer,Susanne Rau,Katharina Waldner

Publisher: Walter de Gruyter GmbH & Co KG

ISBN: 3110418754

Category: History

Page: 514

View: 1403

This volume works through spatio-temporal concepts to be found in imperial practices and their representations in a wide range of media. The individual cases investigated in the volume cover a broad spectrum of historical periods from ancient times up to the present. Well-known international scholars treat special cases of the topic, using cutting-edge theory and approaches stemming from historical, cartographic, religious, literary, media studies, as well as ethnography.

Earth System Science in the Anthropocene

Emerging Issues and Problems

Author: Eckart Ehlers,Thomas Krafft

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 3540265902

Category: Science

Page: 268

View: 2202

This work provides an in-depth perspective and update on special topics in Global Environmental Change in relation to Human Security. It offers an overview of new Joint Projects of the four International Global Change Programmmes and on research efforts in Germany. It is also an up-to-date report on emerging necessities in Global Environmental Change research, and a collection of suggestions for its future evolution.

Polar Icebreakers in a Changing World

An Assessment of U.S. Needs

Author: Committee on the Assessment of U.S. Coast Guard Polar Icebreaker Roles and Future Needs,Polar Research Board,Marine Board,Division on Earth and Life Studies,Transportation Research Board,National Research Council

Publisher: National Academies Press

ISBN: 0309665310

Category: Political Science

Page: 119

View: 6380

The United States has enduring national and strategic interests in the polar regions, including citizens living above the Arctic circle and three year-round scientific stations in the Antarctic. Polar icebreaking ships are needed to access both regions. Over the past several decades, the U.S. government has supported a fleet of four icebreakers -- three multi-mission U.S. Coast Guard ships (the POLAR SEA, POLAR STAR, and HEALY) and the National Science Foundation’s PALMER, which is dedicated solely to scientific research. Today, the POLAR STAR and the POLAR SEA are at the end of their service lives, and a lack of funds and no plans for an extension of the program has put U.S. icebreaking capability at risk. This report concludes that the United States should continue to support its interests in the Arctic and Antarctic for multiple missions, including maintaining leadership in polar science. The report recommends that the United States immediately program, budget, design, and construct two new polar icebreakers to be operated by the U.S. Coast Guard. The POLAR SEA should remain mission capable and the POLAR STAR should remain available for reactivation until the new polar icebreakers enter service. The U.S. Coast Guard should be provided sufficient operations and maintenance budget to support an increased, regular, and influential presence in the Arctic, with support from other agencies. The report also calls for a Presidential Decision Directive to clearly align agency responsibilities and budgetary authorities.

Environmental Politics and Governance in the Anthropocene

Institutions and legitimacy in a complex world

Author: Philipp Pattberg,Fariborz Zelli

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317449924

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 268

View: 4668

The term Anthropocene denotes a new geological epoch characterized by the unprecedented impact of human activities on the Earth’s ecosystems. While the natural sciences have advanced their understanding of the drivers and processes of global change considerably over the last two decades, the social sciences lag behind in addressing the fundamental challenge of governance and politics in the Anthropocene. This book attempts to close this crucial research gap, in particular with regards to the following three overarching research themes: (i) the meaning, sense-making and contestations emerging around the concept of the Anthropocene related to the social sciences; (ii) the role and relevance of institutions, both formal and informal as well as international and transnational, for governing in the Anthropocene; and (iii) the role and relevance of accountability and other democratic principles for governing in the Anthropocene. Drawing together a range of key thinkers in the field, this volume provides one of the first authoritative assessments of global environmental politics and governance in the Anthropocene, reflecting on how the planetary scale crisis changes the ways in which humans respond to the challenge. This volume will be of great interest to students and scholars of global environmental politics and governance, and sustainable development.

Antarctic Sea Ice Variability in the Southern Ocean-Climate System

Proceedings of a Workshop

Author: National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine,Division on Earth and Life Studies,Ocean Studies Board,Polar Research Board

Publisher: National Academies Press

ISBN: 0309456002

Category: Science

Page: 82

View: 3830

The sea ice surrounding Antarctica has increased in extent and concentration from the late 1970s, when satellite-based measurements began, until 2015. Although this increasing trend is modest, it is surprising given the overall warming of the global climate and the region. Indeed, climate models, which incorporate our best understanding of the processes affecting the region, generally simulate a decrease in sea ice. Moreover, sea ice in the Arctic has exhibited pronounced declines over the same period, consistent with global climate model simulations. For these reasons, the behavior of Antarctic sea ice has presented a conundrum for global climate change science. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine held a workshop in January 2016, to bring together scientists with different sets of expertise and perspectives to further explore potential mechanisms driving the evolution of recent Antarctic sea ice variability and to discuss ways to advance understanding of Antarctic sea ice and its relationship to the broader ocean-climate system. This publication summarizes the presentations and discussions from the workshop.

Adventures in the Anthropocene

A Journey to the Heart of the Planet We Made

Author: Gaia Vince

Publisher: Milkweed Editions

ISBN: 157131928X

Category: Science

Page: 448

View: 7108

We live in times of great change on Earth. In fact, while previous shifts from one geological epoch to another were caused by events beyond human control, the dramatic results of our emission of carbon to the atmosphere over the past century have moved many scientists to declare the dawn of a new era: the Anthropocene, or Age of Man. Watching this consensus develop from her seat as an editor at Nature, Gaia Vince couldn’t help but wonder if the greatest cause of this dramatic planetary change—humans’ singular ability to adapt and innovate—might also hold the key to our survival. And so she left her professional life in London and set out to travel the world in search of ordinary people making extraordinary changes and, in many cases, thriving. Part science journal, part travelogue, Adventures in the Anthropocene recounts Vince’s journey, and introduces an essential new perspective on the future of life on Earth.

Research Objects in their Technological Setting

Author: Bernadette Bensaude Vincent,Sacha Loeve,Alfred Nordmann,Astrid Schwarz

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1351966375

Category: Science

Page: 282

View: 6833

What kind of stuff is the world made of? What is the nature or substance of things? These are ontological questions, and they are usually answered with respect to the objects of science. The objects of technoscience tell a different story that concerns the power, promise and potential of things – not what they are but what they can be. Seventeen scholars from history and philosophy of science, epistemology, social anthropology, cultural studies and ethics each explore a research object in its technological setting, ranging from carbon to cardboard, from arctic ice cores to nuclear waste, from wetlands to GMO seeds, from fuel cells to the great Pacific garbage patch. Together they offer fascinating stories and novel analytic concepts, all the while opening up a space for reflecting on the specific character of technoscientific objects. With their promise of sustainable innovation and a technologically transformed future, these objects are highly charged with values and design expectations. By clarifying their mode of existence, we are learning to come to terms more generally with the furniture of the technoscientific world – where, for example, the 'dead matter' of classical physics is becoming the 'smart material' of emerging and converging technologies.

Science, Geopolitics and Culture in the Polar Region

Norden Beyond Borders

Author: Sverker Sörlin

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317058925

Category: History

Page: 462

View: 9345

Throughout the twentieth century, glaciologists and geophysicists from Denmark, Norway and Sweden made important scientific contributions across the Arctic and Antarctic. This research was of acute security and policy interest during the Cold War, as knowledge of the polar regions assumed military importance. But scientists also helped make the polar regions Nordic spaces in a cultural and political sense, with scientists from Norden punching far above their weight in terms of population, geographical size or economic activity. This volume presents an image of Norden that stretches far beyond its conventional limits, covering a vast area in the North Atlantic and the Arctic Sea, as well as parts of Antarctica. Rich in resources, scarce in population, but critically important in global and regional geopolitics, these spaces were contested by major powers such as Russia, the United States, Canada and, in the Antarctic, Argentina, Australia, South Africa and others. The empirical focus on Danish, Norwegian and Swedish influence in the polar regions during the twentieth century embraces a diverse array of themes, from the role of science in policy and diplomacy to the tensions between nationalism and internationalism, with clear relevance to the important role science plays in contemporary discussions about Nordic engagement with the polar regions.

The World Ocean in Globalisation

Climate Change, Sustainable Fisheries, Biodiversity, Shipping, Regional Issues

Author: Davor Vidas,Peter Johan Schei

Publisher: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers

ISBN: 9004191755

Category: Law

Page: 549

View: 4546

This book addresses emerging challenges for the World Ocean in the Anthropocene epoch and the effects of increasing globalisation on the seas. The issues explored in particular include climate change, sustainable fisheries, biodiversity, shipping and regional seas adjoining Europe.

Planning for the International Polar Year 2007-2008:

Report of the Implementation Workshop

Author: Committee on International Polar Year 2007-2008: Report of the Implementation Workshop,Polar Research Board,Division on Earth and Life Studies,National Research Council

Publisher: National Academies Press

ISBN: 0309094372

Category: Nature

Page: 65

View: 7451

The International Polar Year (IPY) 2007-2008 will be an internationally coordinated campaign of polar observations, research, and analysis that will further our understanding of physical and social processes in the polar regions, examine their globally-connected role in the climate system, and establish research infrastructure for the future. Within this context, the IPY will galvanize new and innovative observations and research while at the same time building on and enhancing existing relevant initiatives. It also will serve as a mechanism to attract and develop a new generation of scientists and engineers with the versatility to tackle complex global issues. In 2004, the National Academies' Polar Research Board organized a workshop to explore the challenges associated with these initiatives. Planning for the International Polar Year 2007-2008 summarizes the presentations and discussions from this workshop.

Melting Away

A Ten-Year Journey through Our Endangered Polar Regions

Author: Camille Seaman

Publisher: Chronicle Books

ISBN: 1616893818

Category: Photography

Page: N.A

View: 8747

For ten years Camille Seaman has documented the rapidly changing landscapes of Earth's polar regions. As an expedition photographer aboard small ships in the Arctic and Antarctic, she has chronicled the accelerating effects of global warming on the jagged face of nearly fifty thousand icebergs. Seaman's unique perspective of the landscape is entwined with her Native American upbringing: she sees no two icebergs as alike; each responds to its environment uniquely, almost as if they were living beings. Through Seaman's lens, each towering chunk of ice—breathtakingly beautiful in layers of smoky gray and turquoise blue—takes on a distinct personality, giving her work the feel of majestic portraiture. Melting Away collects seventy-five of Seaman's most captivating photographs, lifeaffirming images that reveal not only what we have already lost, but more importantly what we still have that is worth fighting to save.

The Great Acceleration

Author: J. R. McNeill,Peter Engelke

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 0674545036

Category: History

Page: 275

View: 3810

The pace of energy use, greenhouse gas emissions, and population growth has thrust the planet into a new age—the Anthropocene. Humans have altered the planet’s biogeochemical systems without consciously managing them. The Great Acceleration explains the causes, consequences, and uncertainties of this massive uncontrolled experiment.

Abrupt Impacts of Climate Change

Anticipating Surprises

Author: National Research Council,Division on Earth and Life Studies,Board on Atmospheric Sciences and Climate,Committee on Understanding and Monitoring Abrupt Climate Change and Its Impacts

Publisher: National Academies Press

ISBN: 0309287766

Category: Science

Page: 222

View: 8561

Climate is changing, forced out of the range of the past million years by levels of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases not seen in the Earth's atmosphere for a very, very long time. Lacking action by the world's nations, it is clear that the planet will be warmer, sea level will rise, and patterns of rainfall will change. But the future is also partly uncertain -- there is considerable uncertainty about how we will arrive at that different climate. Will the changes be gradual, allowing natural systems and societal infrastructure to adjust in a timely fashion? Or will some of the changes be more abrupt, crossing some threshold or "tipping point" to change so fast that the time between when a problem is recognized and when action is required shrinks to the point where orderly adaptation is not possible? Abrupt Impacts of Climate Change is an updated look at the issue of abrupt climate change and its potential impacts. This study differs from previous treatments of abrupt changes by focusing on abrupt climate changes and also abrupt climate impacts that have the potential to severely affect the physical climate system, natural systems, or human systems, often affecting multiple interconnected areas of concern. The primary timescale of concern is years to decades. A key characteristic of these changes is that they can come faster than expected, planned, or budgeted for, forcing more reactive, rather than proactive, modes of behavior. Abrupt Impacts of Climate Change summarizes the state of our knowledge about potential abrupt changes and abrupt climate impacts and categorizes changes that are already occurring, have a high probability of occurrence, or are unlikely to occur. Because of the substantial risks to society and nature posed by abrupt changes, this report recommends the development of an Abrupt Change Early Warning System that would allow for the prediction and possible mitigation of such changes before their societal impacts are severe. Identifying key vulnerabilities can help guide efforts to increase resiliency and avoid large damages from abrupt change in the climate system, or in abrupt impacts of gradual changes in the climate system, and facilitate more informed decisions on the proper balance between mitigation and adaptation. Although there is still much to learn about abrupt climate change and abrupt climate impacts, to willfully ignore the threat of abrupt change could lead to more costs, loss of life, suffering, and environmental degradation. Abrupt Impacts of Climate Change makes the case that the time is here to be serious about the threat of tipping points so as to better anticipate and prepare ourselves for the inevitable surprises.